Walker Blog

At Walker Marketing, we don’t just talk about thought leadership—we practice it. You’re invited to read our blogs and compare your thoughts on marketing and public relations with ours. We welcome your comments and questions.

Why FRESH Content Is King on Your Website

New websites always come with the best intentions.

But as a website ages from brand-spanking new to weeks, months and years old, hopeful notions of frequently adding new content may fall by the wayside. In the beginning, maybe the updates are daily. Weekly updates then stretch to monthly, and suddenly, the “latest news” is staler than the last bagel at a staff meeting.

Using PR to Tell Your Community Story in a Compelling Way

What’s your story? If you don’t know, then it’s time to take a look at how public relations — both earned and owned — can help you get your message out in a compelling way. Why Do You Need a Story? Public relations can differ from purchased media like advertising in a significant way: You don’t always have control over the outcome. If you or your PR agency send out a press release, a media outlet can choose to use it as a basis for their own article, run it as you send it or completely ignore it. That’s why it’s important to understand as much as possible the types of content media outlets seek. To stand out from the pack of press releases editors receive each day, you must have an authentic story. Why? Because stories tap into human emotion and get the attention of editors and their audience. By crafting your organization’s news into a compelling story, you increase the chances that a media organization will either run your piece as is or choose to write their own piece. Persuading a key editor of a TV news program, newspaper, magazine, online publication or other media outlet to publish or broadcast your story is known as “earned” PR. The Benefits of Earned PR Earned PR, also known as earned media, gives you credibility. It’s not you saying how great your community is, it’s a news outlet that your target audience recognizes and trusts. Organizations attempting to capitalize on earned PR frequently have a low degree of control over the process. PR often is all about relationships, which business...

The Value of Accreditation in Marketing: A Validation of Quality?

How many prospective residents ask your marketing team about accreditation? One in 20? One in 100?

Accreditation is not at the forefront of most seniors’ minds when they begin looking for a senior living community. But accreditation measures and formalizes many quality markers — including financial stability, safety and security, and staff qualifications — that matter very much to seniors.

Direct Mail Offers That Get Seniors Responding

In recent years, overall use of direct mail has continued to decrease as digital marketing has taken off in many industries. But in senior living, direct mail continues to serve as an effective means of reaching your target market. More so than most other demographic groups, the over-65 set continues to respond well to direct mail offers. Not all direct mail campaigns are created equal, though. When it comes to crafting an effective direct mail offer, the million-dollar question is: What persuades seniors to respond? To get your phones ringing, consider the following four types of offers. 1. A Special Event Most people love an invitation to an exclusive event, and seniors seem to respond particularly well to a beautiful, well-designed invite. Whether it’s an open house, luncheon, cocktail party or picnic on the grounds, an enticing event will get seniors into your community. If your community develops a reputation for throwing especially fun or interesting events with excellent food, your response rate should increase even more. As you plan events, give careful consideration to the setting, menu, speaker or entertainment. Every event detail matters. Think strategically about how you design your invitation. If your dining program and chef are crowning jewels for your community, don’t be afraid to brag a little. Listing the mouth-watering courses your guests can expect certainly won’t do any harm, either. It also may be beneficial to plan smaller events and have them fill up quickly so you can add prospects to a waiting list for your next date. Exclusivity breeds desire, after all. 2. A Great Deal It’s likely that some of your...