News & Resources

The Challenge

While the occupancy goals of Lutheran Sunset Ministries (LSM) were being met in the Independent Living and Assisted Living residences, the community’s census goes up and down. The small town of Clifton, where the community is located, has a limited population to market to, and it is not uncommon for those who are on the waiting list to say they are not ready to move when called upon about a vacancy. To ensure that occupancy goals are consistently met as apartments become available and nearby competition increases, LSM recognized the need to develop a more robust pipeline of prospects.

In an effort to develop that prospect pipeline, LSM hosted an offsite, educational marketing dinner for potential residents at the Saltgrass Steak House in the nearby town of Waco (located 35 miles southeast of the community, with a population of 135,000). An advertisement for the dinner in an upscale local print publication drew six attendees, several of whom may prove to be promising prospects further along the customer journey. While this effort made some inroads toward meeting the community’s overall goal, LSM needed to generate a higher number of qualified leads to grow the waiting list for Independent Living and Assisted Living.

The Solution

LSM engaged Catalyst to create and implement a multichannel campaign to:

  1. Increase regional awareness of LSM among one of their key target audiences — the adult children of potential residents (ages 40-60)
  2. Promote a second dinner event to be held at the same location, this time targeting the adult child audience to increase attendance over the prior event
  3. Generate new qualified leads for the waiting list through lead capture tactics

Catalyst’s targeted, multichannel campaign delivered branded dinner event invitations and brand awareness ads directly into the hands of the adult children of potential Independent Living/Assisted Living residents — all leading them back to a landing page with a lead form that was singularly designed to convert visitors to leads.

Campaign deliverables included:

  • A discovery session to fine-tune the campaign strategy
  • A direct mail invitation for the dinner event sent to the adult child target audience
  • Email targeting with an RSVP landing page, inviting the adult child audience to the dinner event
  • Social media marketing — carousel Facebook ads with a lead form — to increase general brand awareness and capture lead data; the social campaign utilized behavior-based targeting and look-alike audience targeting
  • Geofencing ads with a landing page to increase web and foot traffic, and to capture lead data

The messaging across all deliverables increased general brand awareness for Lutheran Sunset Ministries and promoted themes to appeal to the adult child audience: “Let us help you make difficult decisions easier” addressed the event’s educational topic, and “One decision. One place for every life stage” addressed the continuum of care on one campus theme. The messaging of the direct mail invitation and the targeted email invitations encouraged event registration by creating a sense of urgency and limited seating.

As event registrations rolled in, LSM followed up with a personal phone call to each registrant verifying their registration, asking any qualifying questions, and welcoming them to the event. LSM called each registrant a second time to confirm the day prior to the event, and provided community literature, branded gift bags, and a sign-in sheet at the event, encouraging attendees to sign up for a tour at a later date. Within one week after the event, LSM made a follow-up phone call to each event attendee who had not yet reached out after the event to thank them and encourage them to tour the community.

The Results

Overall, the campaign was a success! The campaign resulted in a successful dinner event with 14 attendees — that’s more than double the attendance of the previous dinner event — and generated a total of 28 new leads.

Event Attendees: 14

  • 7 attendees from direct mail
  • 7 attendees from email targeting

Total New Leads Generated: 28

  • 18 from Facebook
  • 6 from direct mail
  • 4 from email

Average Cost Per Lead: $235

  • Compare to the $431 national average cost per lead for senior care marketing. (2018 State of Senior Care Sales & Marketing, Whittington Consulting)

Lead Breakdown:

Facebook Ads:

  • Summary and Recommendations: The SMM campaign performed well, greatly exceeding the original benchmark goal of 10 leads for the duration of the campaign. Regular optimizations were performed to increase performance. This included updates to the target to utilize custom, look-alike audiences. The campaign also had a high engagement rate with 97 post likes, 2 positive post comments, and 3 new page follows.
  • New Leads: 18
    • Total Cost: $700 media spend
    • Cost Per Lead: $38.89
    • Conversion Rate (CVR): 3.65% (compared to industry average of 2.68%)
    • Click-Through Rate (CTR): 2.69% (compared to industry average of 0.99%)
  • Audience Engagement:
    • Reach: 7,511
    • Impressions: 18,314
    • Ad Clicks: 493
    • Page Likes: 3
    • Post Reactions: 97
    • Post Comments: 2

Direct Mail:

  • New Leads: 6
    • Total Cost: $2,716.53
    • Cost Per Lead: $453

Email Targeting:

  • New Leads: 4
    • Total Cost: $2,100
    • Cost Per Lead: $525.00
  • Sends: 40,000
  • Opens: 5,672
  • Open Rate: 14.18%
  • Clicks: 330
  • CTR: 0.83%

Geofencing:

  • New Leads: 0
    • Total Cost: $1,050
  • Website Sessions: 340
    • Cost Per Website Session: $3.09
  • Impressions: 111,784
  • Ad Clicks: 187
  • CTR: 0.17%