8 Make-or-Break Decisions in the Buying Process

If you’ve ever wondered what goes through buyers’ minds as they make the yes-or-no move-in decision, you’ve reached the right spot.

There are 8 major make-or-break decisions in the buying process.

Especially in the Senior Living industry, buying decisions have more to do with emotion than logic.

While dollars and cents are part of the equation, it’s ultimately the residents’ happiness that is the key factor.

In my years of providing sales training for Senior Living professionals, I’ve discovered the thoughts and questions that float through buyers’ minds. If you can forecast these thoughts, you’ll stay at full occupancy and be able to diversify your property portfolio.

#1 “Do I have all the information?”

Chances are, buyers don’t have all the information relating specifically to their loved one’s wants and needs.

If you leave out the nitty-gritty details that tie to your prospect’s needs, there will be doubt as to whether you are the right fit.

As they say, love is in the details. Be sure to build into your sales training program a system that creates an open forum for lots of open-ended questions.

The goal is to learn as much as possible about prospective leads and to prompt buyers to think beyond price, square footage, and location.

What really is most important to your prospects’ decision?

What’s their greatest concern, the concern that keeps them up at night and will ultimately be the deciding factor regarding the community they choose?

If you don’t train your sales teams to get beyond the basics, you will forever have vacant units creating painful revenue gaps that could otherwise be closed!

#2 “What are my other options?”

Shopping is fair game. And competitiveness makes for a stronger marketplace.

However, mid-sized operators often struggle to compete, especially when pricing is an issue. This is because mid-sized operators lack economies of scale.

To curb this objection, be sure to teach your sales teams the power of the human connection.

While they may think it all comes down to location and price, the truth is people want to know that they matter and that their loved ones will thrive upon making a move.

When 95% of what you offer is the same as your competitors, a true customer experience will ensure you stand out and will drive close conversions even if you are more costly than your competitors.

#3 “How will mom’s social life change?”

Medical care is a top concern, followed shortly by the social life your property provides.

The children who make healthcare decisions care as much about their parents’ mental state as they do their parents’ physical health.

When training your sales teams, be sure to teach them the power of asking great open-ended questions around mom or dad’s hobbies, interests, and desires.

The more you can tailor visits and follow up to demonstrate how your community can meet residents’ social, as well as medical, needs, the more likely you are to close in less time.

#4 “Will dad receive the medical care he requires?”

This one is often the sole reason buyers make the decision to move their parents and grandparents into Senior Living communities.

The medical care question is the first one your sales staff should ask. Yet many times, sales teams gloss over this question quickly, making assumptions about what’s important to a family member or prospect.

Teach your teams to drill down and learn details relating to the care expectations, the past experiences, and the desires of prospects pondering a move.

Mystery shop your communities, and what you will find is that this rarely happens. Yet when it does, it’s a big differentiating factor.

#5 “How will this make my parents happy?”

Buyers need specific details. If your sales staff is properly trained, they will be able to engage a variety of residents during scheduled tours.

With proper training, your sales teams will also be able to incorporate very satisfied adult children of existing residents to serve as third-party endorsements.

While your staff is probably excited to tell prospective residents and their families how great the community is, nothing is more powerful than hearing it from someone else!

Train your sales team to use testimonials and stories of transformation as this will illuminate the specifics prospects need to hear to feel confident in your ability to deliver.

#6 “Will this make mom or dad upset?”

Be sympathetic. Your salespeople need to discuss the truth about there being a rough transition at times.
However, showcase what your team does to ease the transition and create immediate resident engagement and satisfaction.

Pretending it will be easy can be a big mistake; the truth is that no one wants to leave their home.
Create a visual of what week one, two, and three will be like for their loved one. Describe your Ambassador program and more.

#7 “What’s the cost versus the benefit?”

This is a logical concern, but it’s one that happens as you move closer to a signed lease.

I advise sales teams to know why every cent is charged and to detail the cost versus benefit analysis. Think of it as an itemized statement in conversation form.

#8 “How will this affect our family as a whole?”

Senior Living communities are just that—communities.

And that word spreads beyond your staff and the residents they care for.

Take into account not only your resident’s emotional well-being, but also the family’s. Discuss how everyone is in this together.

I know what training your sales team needs to read the buyers’ minds.

I’ll ensure your organization drives move-ins and increases revenue. Email me at tbild@bildandco.com or text 813-390-3349 with your name and number, and I’ll get the sales training process started.

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