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RECAP: FABTECH 2015

Update: FABTECH in Chicago was another great success.

FABTECH Expo provides a chance for the metal fabrication industry to meet with world-class suppliers and see the latest industry products and developments, and find the tools to improve productivity, increase profits and discover new solutions to all of your metal forming, fabricating, welding, and finishing needs.

Stevens IMG_2871& Tate President Dan Gartlan and Internet Marketing Director Nicole Wagner were selected to share their b2b marketing expertise as speakers at the conference. Dan led a session titled,“Integrated Marketing Strategies to Attract Prospects to Your Brand and Drive Success” and Nicole spoke on“How Your Website & Social Media Can Be Powerful Tools to Enhance Your Online Presence & Drive Success.”

Stevens & Tate was asked to share our expertise at the conference based on our extensive experience in the b2b field – with proven success building brands and growing business with comprehensive marketing programs.
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RECAP: 2015 “Be the Voice” National LeadingAge Annual Meeting and EXPO

Update: The Leading Age National Conference in Boston was another great success. Leading Age is the leading trade show for senior living professionals. Stevens & Tate President Dan Gartlan and Internet Marketing Director Nicole Wagner were selected to share their marketing expertise as speakers at the conference. Dan led a session titled,“Integrated Strategies to Drive Occupancy” and Nicole spoke on“Using Search Engine Marketing and Social Media.”

Stevens & Tate was asked to share our expertise at the conference based on our extensive experience in the senior living field – with proven success building brands and growing business with comprehensive marketing programs.
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Habitat for Humanity Restore

Stevens & Tate Marketing Launches Campaign To Promote Habitat For Humanity ReStores In Chicagoland

Lombard, Ill.—Stevens & Tate Marketing has launched an integrated media campaign for Habitat for Humanity in Chicagoland to promote the organization’s ReStores.

ReStores are retail locations that accept gently used items and resell them to the general public and small contractors. Individuals and corporations can donate home furnishings, appliances, cabinets, tools, building materials, and more. Revenue generated from the sales supports local Habitat for Humanity initiatives.

“Despite all the positive work done by Habitat for Humanity, recent surveys have shown that brand recognition is extremely low,” said Matt Johnson, chief executive officer for Chicagoland Habitat for Humanity. The organization supports eight independent affiliates in the greater Chicago area including Northern Fox Valley, DuPage County, Lake County, McHenry County, Chicago South Suburbs, Fox Valley, Chicago, and Will County.

“For a group of eight stores, the ReStore brand was relatively unknown,” agreed Dan Gartlan, president of Stevens & Tate Marketing. “Many consumers who had heard about ReStores did not realize they were open to the public. We needed to change that perception. It was time to pool resources and promote ReStores at a metro-wide level.”

Prior to the campaign launch, each ReStore was marketed separately, which limited geographic reach due to spending constraints, Gartlan explained. This also restricted the ability for ReStore’s brand awareness to grow throughout Chicagoland.

Stevens & Tate was brought in to execute a Chicago metro market media buy that included broadcast and online components with the goal of creating the best media mix to reach a larger audience with a stronger voice than individual stores could do independently.

The anchor of the plan was radio, with spots placed on multiple stations to blanket the city and suburban markets and reach both male and female audiences. Cable television was added to the mix to support each store locally. Focusing on select zones allowed higher frequency and minimized waste. Plus, ads were concentrated on stations and programming that aligned with the target audience. An ad network provided further targeting—behavioral, geographical and contextual—to deliver the highest return on investment in the digital space.

By consolidating efforts and capitalizing on economies of scale, Stevens & Tate now is telling the brand story on a ?larger scale and achieving efficiencies in spending to reach more potential donors and shoppers.

“Even though manufacturers such as GE and Whirlpool and retailers like Darvin donate items to ReStores, personal donations are important, too,” said Johnson. “Having a fresh inventory of sought-after household goods and building materials brings shoppers in the door…and keeps them coming back.”

As a result, Stevens & Tate is focusing messaging to attract donors, as well as shoppers.

“A key component of this outreach program is to increase the number of donated items for sale to the ReStores while also improving shopper count by building awareness of the stores, their locations, and the types of merchandise available,” said Gartlan.

To complete the story on ReStores and Habitat for Humanity’s mission in Chicagoland, Stevens & Tate developed a new, market-wide website that serves as a single portal for consumers to gather information. The responsive design allows shoppers and donors to find a local ReStore quickly and easily on a mobile device.

This marketing initiative for Habitat for Humanity in Chicagoland was made possible in part by Stevens & Tate, which chose the organization as its 2015 Lend-A-Hand Marketing Giveaway recipient.

“From time to time, Stevens & Tate offers a thriving non-profit the opportunity to utilize our expertise to push its mission forward,” Gartlan explained. “Being even a small part of an organization’s success is satisfying. It’s our way of giving back. Beyond that, it infuses our shop with meaningful work and helps our team members spread their wings and stretch their imaginations.”

The “Habitat for Humanity ReStores in Chicagoland” campaign was chosen for 2015’s Lend-A-Hand project because it exhibits three qualities critical for success: a vision for the organization, strong leadership and the financial ability to execute what is created.

“We thank Stevens & Tate for selecting Habitat for Humanity for their 2015 Lend-A-Hand project,” said Matt Johnson, ”and are grateful for this opportunity to raise awareness of the Habitat and ReStore brands as well as begin working collaboratively among the eight locations.”

Stevens & Tate is a full-service Chicago advertising and marketing agency offering award-winning, on-strategy creative; integrated message development; Internet and digital advertising; and cost-effective media planning and execution. Stevens & Tate creates focused, targeted solutions for its clients in the food/grocery, retail, senior living, real estate, healthcare, business-to-business, travel/tourism, and non-profit industries. To learn more about Stevens & Tate’s services or work, visit the company’s website at www.stevens-tate.com or call (630) 627-5200.

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Senior Living Marketing Experts Dan Gartlan and Nicole Wagner to Speak at Two Upcoming LeadingAge Conferences

LOMBARD, ILL., August 25, 2015 – Year after year, the speakers at Stevens & Tate Marketing continue to be asked to share their senior living marketing expertise at events across the country. Continuing the tradition is the agency’s appearance at numerous conferences for LeadingAge organizations nationwide.

Early this fall, Stevens & Tate President Dan Gartlan and Internet Marketing Director Nicole Wagner will be adding two more of these events to the list: 2015 LeadingAge Missouri Annual Conference and LeadingAge Nebraska Fall Conference & Annual Meeting. As experts in the senior living/aging care industry, Gartlan and Wagner have established notable credibility with the targeted audience groups, and look forward to the new speaking engagements.

The Missouri event will be a repeat performance for Nicole Wagner, having been selected as a featured speaker at last year’s “[re]defining age” event as well. At the upcoming “Be the Voice” Conference in St. Louis, she will focus on online marketing, with a newly updated track for today’s marketplace. “Strategies for Using Search & Social to Attract Seniors” is designed to give aging care marketers a real-world perspective on specific ways they can enhance their websites and social media campaigns to be most effective in an increasingly interactive world. This highly anticipated session is scheduled from 4:45-5:45pm on Wednesday, September 2nd at the Marriott St. Louis Grand Hotel.

In Nebraska, the duo of experts have both been asked to present at the Fall Conference taking place October 14-15, 2015 at the Omaha Marriott Regency Hotel—using their vast experience to help senior living/aging care professionals expand their knowledge of successful marketing techniques.

Dan Gartlan will be heading up a Learning Lounge on Wednesday, October 14th, from 1:30-2:30pm. This informal setting will allow attendees to get a hands-on insight exploring a series of proven tactics and strategies that can help engage new audiences and draw prospects to their facilities. “Integrated Marketing Strategies to Attract Prospects to Your Brand and Drive Occupancy” will focus on Gartlan’s innovative Attraction Marketing program (www.AttractionMarketingUS.com) and the techniques that can strengthen current marketing programs and enhance results. Additionally, it will include discussion on a unique process for monitoring and tracking results to create structure, measurement and accountability for each initiative.

“Attraction Marketing offers senior care organizations a new way of approaching their marketing and a solid foundation for addressing the challenges that most continue to face today,” said Gartlan. “The concept’s ability to be adapted by communities of all sizes and scopes—even those with tighter budget constraints—is what continues to make it so relevant and well received by senior care marketing professionals,” he continued. “Additionally, attendees appreciate specific examples that demonstrate how to implement the program and achieve optimum success.”

On Thursday, October 15th, from 1:15-2:15pm, Nicole Wagner will be presenting her “Strategies for Using Search & Social to Attract Residents” online marketing session. “In a space that is constantly evolving, it is essential that marketers understand how to navigate their options and determine what is best for their audiences, brand and goals,” said Wagner. “My session is geared to show the senior care market tactics that make sense for them, and can immediately enhance their programs—regardless of current social or search engine marketing knowledge,” she continued. “These actionable takeaways have led to success across multiple industries and will continue to advance.”

LeadingAge Missouri and LeadingAge Nebraska are the respective local chapters of the national association, which includes thousands of not-for-profit organizations dedicated to the health care and housing of the aging. The Annual Meetings offer an ideal platform to showcase products and services and provide relevant education to senior living providers representing the full continuum of Independent Living Communities, Assisted Living Communities, Skilled Nursing Facilities, Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs), Adult Day Care, and other home and community-based services throughout these states.

Stevens & Tate Marketing is a full service advertising agency offering award-winning, on-strategy creative; integrated message development; Internet advertising; and cost-effective media planning and execution. Stevens & Tate creates focused, targeted solutions for all its clients in senior living, medical/healthcare, business-to-business, food, grocery, retail, travel/tourism, and real estate industries.

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senior living marketing strategy

Evaluating Your Senior Living Marketing Strategy

Today’s marketplace is far different than even just a few years ago. New and emerging technologies continue to change the media landscape, and seniors continue to change their attitude and how they make purchase decisions. These are all factors that can affect your community’s ongoing success.This makes it even more important for you to take a good hard look at your marketing initiatives regularly. In order to move forward, you must consistently evaluate and update your strategies, programs and processes to adapt to senior living marketing.

5 Key Marketing Initiatives To Evaluate

1.Goals and Objectives

The very first place you should start is with your overall goals and objectives – not only for your community, but specifically for your sales and marketing initiatives. A key thing to remember here is that any previous plans you have set may no longer be appropriate moving forward. By assessing how your CCRC has evolved over the past year, and also how your target audience has evolved, you will be able to determine if your goals are still relevant.

Strategy is essential. Questions you should ask yourself: Is it reasonable in today’s marketplace? Is it feasible within your budget? Does it reflect the behavior and attitude of your target? When you focus on these issues you can create a plan that will best set you up for success.

2.Budgets

While reviewing and renewing budgets is a task on every community’s to-do list, it is not uncommon to get stuck in a habit of just “doing what you have always done” with no regard for results or shifts in the marketplace. Unfortunately, this mentality can be just as detrimental as doing nothing at all. Is your budget real, for today?

As you prepare your budget, make a point to really evaluate the key points of your budget and assess if it is time to adjust. This may mean increasing or decreasing overall budget numbers, or  shifting your spending across specific areas and re-allocating dollars to focus on different initiatives.

Remember to open up your thinking and take a look at your overall sales and marketing budget as a whole, AND also for the individual buckets of spending within your marketing program to make adjustments where needed to get you in line with your objectives.

3.Media Plans and Strategies

The media landscape is ever-changing – with new technologies and trends constantly emerging and existing media platforms continuously evolving. This means that there are more opportunities to reach the senior market than ever before.

Smart marketers are the ones who adapt to these changes, by creating a media strategy that reaches across multiple touch-points – utilizing a variety of media channels to reach seniors. It is essential to evaluate your own media mix to make certain it is in line with this thinking.

4.Overall Brand Image and Messaging

When is the last time you actually took a step back and took a good hard look at your brand from an outsider’s perspective? Maybe you’ve been around for generations, and never thought about updating your brand identity because it well-known. Maybe you are a relatively new company who just established its identity. Either way, things change pretty quickly. And in today’s constantly evolving online, social and interactive world, you need to keep up.

So now ask yourself: how is your brand doing right now? Are you portraying the right image and sending the right message to seniors? Evaluate things like your website design (its look and feel), your logo, and your advertising or marketing in general (both creative and sales-supporting). Next review your messaging—both online and off—and really think about what it is saying. Does it speak to your current audience in a way that is relevant to their mindset and behavior How about the overall content on your website, social sites, and marketing material …is it up-to-date? Have you made adjustments to reflect the changes that have affected your community? Take a look at these things individually, and as a whole, and consider if it is time to do some re-vamping or re-tooling to get where you need to be.

5.Direct Marketing

In today’s fast-moving society, reaching seniors with messaging that is targeted to their needs is essential for increasing conversions. And direct marketing is a great way to do this. Direct can be a smart addition to your marketing mix to help reinforce your brand, encourage immediate action, and, most importantly, stay top of mind with seniors so that when they are ready to act—or know someone who is—yours will be the first senior living community they think of.

Cost-efficient, timely, easily segmented, and trackable, direct marketing can build interest and awareness, educate on key details of your brand, support your other outreach efforts with complementary messaging, or create unique stand-alone pieces designed around specific events or topics. Additionally, direct marketing channels are excellent for testing various messages or offers, or even trying out a new creative campaign.

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senior living marketing

The Benefits Of Marketing Automation For Senior Living Communities

Seniors today are more tech-savvy than ever before. A recent Nielson report shows that the number of adults 65 years old or older actively using the Internet has increased by more than 55 percent in the last five years. Furthermore, adult children continue to play an important role in finding quality elder care for their parents. This means that it is vital for your senior community to maintain a strong web presence, and vital for your company to reap the benefits of marketing automation, as a part of senior living marketing.

When searching for a community online, seniors and their children both expect timely responses to their questions and content that addresses their specific needs. Marketing automation helps enable senior living organizations to engage leads with relevant content, track and score each lead’s behavior and deliver better quality leads.

What is Marketing Automation?

Marketing Automation is a tool that informs, interacts and nurtures leads as they move through the sales funnel. It is a process that manages a community’s interaction with its prospects by providing them the right information at the right time in the buying process. By targeting content, marketing automation informs, entertains, socializes and earns the prospect’s business.

Prospects define the path through their modes of interaction, targeted search, website visits, by downloading brochures, or requesting a tour of your community.

How does it work?

MA tools start with the premise of managing all levels of leads and then apply business rules, analytics, segmentation and scientific data to manage prospects in your sales funnel.

Here is an example of what a basic automated email workflow could look like:

Step 1: Email Invite

You send an email invitation to download your latest community brochure to a targeted list of contacts

Step 2: Thank You Note

You send a thank you note to all the people that downloaded the brochure.

Step 3: Follow Up Email

A few days later, you send a follow up email to the list of people who downloaded the brochure, offering them more detailed floor plans, amenity lists and information about your community.

Step 4: Notification

Finally, when someone reads that information, your sales team will get a notification so they can follow up with them (this person is now much more qualified and is likely farther down the buying process)

Learn more about the Benefits Of Inbound Marketing

Now, put yourself in your prospect’s shoes for a moment. If this was you, receiving information from a senior community about their services and amenities, wouldn’t you prefer to get emails like the ones above over blasts you can tell they’re sending to hundreds of other people? It feels personalized, like it is tailored to you and addresses your individual medical needs. This makes you much more likely to trust that community and ultimately schedule a tour.

This is the foundation of marketing automation. To provide you, as a marketer, with the ability to target your contacts and send them content that is based on their behavior. You’re giving them the information they need when they want it. You’re easing their buying decision. And as a result, your conversion rates will increase and vacancies will decrease.

inbound marketing guide

Advertising Agency Tips: 5 Trends, Movements And Ideas That Are Shaping The Advertising Business

Take it from the leaders in advertising and learn about advertising tips, trends and movements happening in the advertising business.

Michael Lee| Forbes | September 10, 2015

Everything is up for grabs.

New ideas are being put together, tested and learned from, and tested and learned from a little more, to get both agencies and clients operating at a higher level.

Clients are looking at new ways of driving down cost, upping value, efficiency and output, keeping the agency on their toes and it’s ideas heading for the bleachers.

Agencies are also working out how to keep their agency on their toes, ideas also heading for said bleachers, keeping all those new start-up company’s clammy hands stuffed with dollars away their talent, and being grown-up partners to their clients. Read more

Content Marketing Plan For Senior Living Communities

As seniors look to sell their homes and move into retirement communities, reliance on the Internet is greater than ever before. The development of a strong website with relevant content that is search-engine friendly is becoming increasingly important in the senior living industry. It is becoming important to understand what senior living marketing and how to use it in the industry.

With seniors and their adult children becoming savvier in Internet usage, it is becoming critical for the senior living market to address its target audiences online. A strong website, with quality content that is easily found by the search engines is key to generating interest. For some, it is the first step to determine which community to visit. Read more

Basic SEO Steps for Your Senior Living Community

Assisted living, senior living, and skilled nursing are some of the fastest growing and most competitive online searches. The fact is, seniors and their children are  searching online to find information about senior living communities. Implementing a strong senior living SEO strategy is a great way to improve your search engine presence and bring those searchers to your website for senior living marketing.

SEO comes down to three main parts, content, on-page optimization and external optimization. Here are some basic SEO steps for your senior living community. Read more