by Wendy O’Donovan Phillips


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Does this sound like your marketing team? Lots of projects and tasks, not much direction. Vague clarity on what’s working and what’s not, but no real evidence of traction. Lots of action, but no time to examine or replicate what’s working best.

This is a typical situation Wendy O’Donovan Phillips sees with senior living marketing teams. And fixing this kind of chaos is her specialty. As the CEO of Big Buzz, a full-service marketing agency and Foresight partner, Wendy helps teams focus.

Focus leads to increased productivity and effectiveness, and decreased stress and turnover. “Taking some time now to get everyone on the same page will make all the marketing go more smoothly for years to come,” she says.

Does your team have a focus problem? Here are some of the signs.

Sign 1: Objectives Are Unclear (or Not Set)

If your marketing team can’t identify its top three objectives, Wendy says, you have a focus problem.
Objectives are destinations—goalposts on a journey toward making your organization what you want it to be. To start creating objectives, look to your mission statement, vision statement, and core values for inspiration. Take it further by considering your brand promise and differentiators.
Here are some examples of marketing objectives:

  • We have a highly functioning marketing team.
  • We have a positive impact on all our stakeholders.
  • We are known as the authority in our area of expertise.
  • We have a growing and engaged client base.

Objectives become litmus tests for marketing tactics. If one objective is, “We are the known memory care provider in our area,” this alerts the team to focus efforts on such tactics as writing memory care case studies, building out memory care content on the website, and running digital advertising to draw people seeking memory care to the website. The custom-made monthly event calendar for every location may have to wait or take a more automated form to create bandwidth for these more pressing tactics.

Click here to read the full article featuring Big Buzz CEO Wendy O’Donovan Phillips.

Big Buzz is a marketing agency delivering a steady stream of move-in-ready leads to teams serving the senior living industry. For more than 15 years, Big Buzz has helped senior living marketing and sales teams nurture leads to increase occupancy, grow and scale. CEO Wendy O’Donovan Phillips is the author of the book Flourish!: The Method Used by Aging Services Organizations for the Ultimate Marketing Results, has been published in McKnight’s, has been a regular contributor to Forbes, and has been quoted in The Washington Post, ABC News and Chicago Tribune. The Big Buzz leadership team regularly lectures in front of audiences ranging from 25 to 3,000 attendees, including at Argentum and various LeadingAge chapters. Agency awards and accolades include recognition for excellence by the American Marketing Association, Gold Key Award Winner by the Business Marketing Association, HubSpot Academy Inbound Marketing Certification, and Top Advertising and Marketing Agency by Clutch.

by Wendy O’Donovan Phillips



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