Are We Marketing Home Care and Senior Living to the Right Type of Senior?
Guest Post By Art Carr
Movies and endless reruns on television tend to establish an ageless image in our minds of an individual such as Ursula Andress – the “quintessential” Bond girl from the 1962
film “Dr. No” (the first of the James Bond 007 movies). On the other hand, if asked to conjure a picture of a prospective resident or home care client, we are more likely to think of Will Geer and Ellen Corby as Grandpa and Grandma Walton on the TV series.
To remain effective in marketing our services – be they home-based services or senior living facilities – in the future, we must change and update our images of a “senior citizen”, the “elderly”, etc. The “Bobby-sox generation” , born from 1935 to the end of World War II, will become the new driving force for senior care over the next decade. Ms. Andress who is now 76 years old and others from her generation are now factored into our demographic studies when assessing a need for services in a given location.
IS THAT REALISTIC?
DO WE REALLY EXPECT THAT THE SAME FACILITY DESIGNS, PRODUCTS AND SERVICES CREATED FOR THE DEPRESSION ERA AND WORLD WAR II VETERANS WILL MEET THE NEEDS AND DEMANDS OF NEWER GENERATIONS?
CAN WE CONTINUE WITH A “BUILD IT AND THEY WILL COME” MENTALITY?
The Bobby-sox generation is sometimes referred to as a “between generation” and is frequently overlooked. It is between the “Greatest Generation” and the Baby-boomers. The good news is that the senior living industry has the opportunity to evolve its products and service delivery packages over the next decade before the onslaught of the baby-boomers.
The first step is to RECOGNIZE the need for change and then use the Bobby-sox generation as a testing and proving ground to evolve the breadth and quality of our services.
- Recognize that the newer generations won’t accept a rest home mentality. Provide value by offering an interactive and stimulating lifestyle. Engage clientele and promote healthy aging activities.
- Recognize their individuality and desire to retain their independence. Provide value by offering more options and participation in decision-making.
- Recognize their on-going higher level needs such as ego satisfaction. Provide value with creative and competitive activity programs. Offer customized and small group programs in addition to large group activities.
- Recognize and respect the rich life experiences of clientele. Provide value by addressing the needs of the whole person and focus on capabilities vs disabilities.
- Recognize the capabilities of today’s enabling technologies and provide value by utilizing those to minimize invasiveness and preserve the dignity of the senior.
 Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honey_Ryder
 For more on the Bobby-sox generation, please go to http://progressiveretirement.wordpress.com/category/wake-up-call/bobby-sox-generation-wake-up-call/
 As dubbed by Tom Brokaw in his book of the same name.
 Pyramid of Needs by Abraham Maslow.
About Art Carr
Art Carr, CPA, is the Founder & President of Progressive Retirement Group, providing development, management & consulting services for the senior housing and care industry. In this role, he has created an evolutionary “Village” design of senior neighborhoods with integrated technology and the unique branded Progressive Retirement Lifestyles program of hospitality-based, resident-centered services to meet the differing needs of various senior clients. Previously, he was one of the top Regional Directors for industry leader Holiday Retirement.
For over 20 years, Mr. Carr has provided exceptional corporate-level leadership for all types and sizes of senior housing & care organizations – from fledgling enterprises to complex operations worth more than one billion dollars. His operations and financial expertise includes independent living, long term care (SNF), assisted living, home health, home medical equipment, rehab, and pharmacy.
In both officer and independent consulting roles, Mr. Carr has provided executive and board level leadership, corporate compliance, contract management, information technology, and reimbursement services for start-ups, growth businesses and industry leaders, as well as leading several turnarounds. His achievements include success in entrepreneurial, venture capital backed and corporate environments, including operating a division with 250 locations and $1B in revenues (today’s dollars) for a public LTC company.
He may be contacted by phone at 615-414-5217 or email: [email protected].
Valerie’s motto and favorite saying is: “Impact is not created by big budgets, impact is created by innovative marketing ideas!”
Valerie is a Registered Nurse and the author of three books, Aging Answers (2003), The Senior Solution (2007) and Priceless Caregiving (2009). Her adventure in internet marketing began as a self-promotion experiment and ended up becoming a full time marketing consulting business for the elder care market.
Valerie has appeared on national television (Today Show), has hosted her own local radio show, and has been interviewed for dozens of publications and radio shows across the country regarding her business and the business of elder care.
She fast became the foremost authority in driving sales via the internet, seminars, and e-mail for senior service providers and elder care entrepreneurs.While Valerie’s best known for her expertise in marketing, her students share that her biggest impact comes from her ability to make things happen quickly, even on a small budget.
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