When census levels in the Senior Living industry dip, the obstacles you face for increasing occupancy can seem insurmountable.
It’s challenging enough to outsell your competitors when occupancy is robust, so less than stellar economic forecasts seem to spell trouble for your community.
You may especially struggle with concerns like these if you’ve viewed a recent press release from the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing and Care (NIC).
Citing a supply-demand imbalance, the NIC reports a downturn for seniors housing occupancy (which includes assisted living and independent living but excludes skilled nursing).
As the organization states, occupancy fell to 89.3% in the first quarter of 2017—a level untouched since mid-2013—with…
- Independent living occupancy lowering to 90.9%.
- Assisted living occupancy falling to 87.2%.
Despite these statistics, increasing occupancy isn’t contingent on how much the Senior Living industry is struggling. Driving move-ins begins with shattering occupancy myths, identifying your real challenges, and implementing a solution to improve your census.
Myths about Increasing Occupancy
It’s difficult to increase revenue if you’re focused on overcoming the wrong challenges. The key to navigating occupancy downturns may be different than what you think. Here are some common myths about poor metrics:
Myth #1: It’s the economy.
While the economy does play a significant role in your struggles, the market isn’t everything. During an economic downturn, some businesses thrive while others struggle.
The senior care industry is no different, and your assisted living or independent living community is like any other business. Cultivating the characteristics of thriving communities needs to be your focus.
Myth #2: It’s my location.
Perhaps your community is located in a depressed area, or maybe other communities are closer to local amenities. The good news is that location is only one factor in prospects’ decision-making process, and not all leads treat geographic location with equal importance.
Myth #3: It’s the price.
Unaligned and uncompetitive pricing can damage your revenue, but don’t assume you struggle to convert because of price. Your community itself—not the price you’re asking—can drive prospects away.
Each of these three myths contains a valid concern. However, more often than not, there’s a common obstacle that blocks mid-sized operators from increasing occupancy.
The Common Culprit of Occupancy Struggles
If leads are slipping through your fingers, your community probably suffers from a weak sales process and sales counselors who neglect opportunities for driving Senior Living sales.
Unknown to you, your sales team may constantly make blunders that cost you thousands in revenue. Increasing occupancy is difficult because they…
- Fail to leverage inquiry calls for gathering information.
- Don’t close leads gained from outreach events.
- Neglect to follow up with leads.
- Can’t successfully resolve objections and answer questions.
- And more.
Increasing Occupancy in Economic Difficulty
Ultimately, the secret to closing deals when others are struggling lies in tightly managing the factors you can control at your community.
With Senior Living sales training, you can implement a proven sales process and ensure your team leverages every opportunity to convert leads. Professional coaching empowers your sales counselors to…
- Turn inquiry calls into data-mining sessions that create successful tours.
- Build value by matching your community’s strengths with prospects’ needs.
- Sell without relying on discounts and incentives.
Finding the help you need to drive Senior Living sales begins with assessing the current state of your sales team.