Measuring Success in Seniors Housing Sales

David Smith and Alexandra Fisher present a unique and effective way for measuring success in senior housing sales with their recently published article in NIC’s latest edition of the Seniors Housing & Care Journal.

(From the NIC website)

“One piece deserving special commendation is Measuring Success in Seniors Housing Sales: Prospect-Centered Selling (SM) with the “Stages of Change” Model. In this article, David Smith and Alexandra Fisher provide a data-driven rationale for taking a person-centered approach to seniors housing sales, as opposed to transactional selling. Relating it to a book written about baseball, Moneyball, they elaborate on their successful application of Prochaska¹s “Stages of Change” model of health behavior change to sales opportunities.”


(From an executive summary for the article)

“Despite the benefits of senior housing, there is strong emotional resistance towards age-segregated, congregate living. Prospects find it increasingly difficult to maintain their current situation, yet they nevertheless resist moving. Attempting to sell the benefits of senior housing, before addressing underlying emotional barriers, actually fosters objections and delays the decision-making process.

Compared with transactional selling, which prioritizes sales resources and predicts success based on perceived urgency, Prospect-Centered Selling measures and tracks advances of individual prospects along a continuum of readiness. The continuum is divided into four distinct “Stages of Change.” Based on accepted psychological principals, each stage can be identified by characteristic behaviors and emotions. Through the use of specified behavior-changing guidelines, sales counselors help motivate prospects advance by addressing—and hopefully overcoming — their own emotional barriers.

Prospect-Centered Selling produces better visit-to-close ratios, especially among higher-functioning prospects. The behaviors of sales counselors that help increase the number of prospect advances include investing more time in the “Selling Zone” with each qualified prospect, developing trusting relationships, asking questions that evoke change talk, planning for strategic advances and using personalized, creative follow-up.

Advances are the sales equivalent to baseball’s on-base percentage since they set up additional opportunities for closes. A consistent focus on advances provides a much greater overall probability of achieving better visit-to-close conversions. Prospect-Centered Selling gives providers the type of “huge opportunity” for increased sales that Billy Beane gave baseball owners when he changed the way they consider what makes a successful hitter.”



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