Adjust Your Marketing and Sales Practices
Different sales strategies and practices will ensure compliance
- By Barbara Holliday
- Nov 01, 2016
Baby Boomers are typically defined as
the group born from 1946 to 1964,
which means they are now between
50 and 70 years old. According to the
U.S. Census Bureau, by the year 2030, 20 percent
of Americans will be 65 and older, up from 13 percent
That means the Boomer market is becoming
more important to our industry, since seniors
are typically better educated and wealthier than
prior generations. New products and services
that provide greater comfort and allow seniors to
remain in their homes longer play a huge role in
engaging these buyers.
Marketing to older homeowners requires
sales strategies and practices that will not only
help improve results, but also ensure compliance
with regulations intended to protect the elderly.
PROTECTION AGAINST FRAUD
Elder fraud involves attempting to deceive older
adults with promises of goods, services or financial
benefits that do not exist or were misrepresented.
In 2011, the FTC reported that 7.3 percent
of adults aged 65-74 and 6.5 percent of adults over
75 had been the target of fraudulent activities. By
2014, lawmakers in more than 20 states had introduced
legislation to address this concern.
Homeowners with mental illness or a degenerative
mental health condition have special
protections under the law when entering into
contracts or other binding documents. Even
mild cognitive decline is a risk factor for financial
capability, leaving some seniors at risk of
Because of this risk, it is important that sales
representatives and technicians receive specialized
training in ethics and sales tactics. Everyone
can benefit from home security and the convenience
of our home automation products. It is
important to make sure that a buyer is cognitively
aware that they are entering into an agreement.
SIMPLE AND STRAIGHTFORWARD
All homeowners appreciate and respect being approached
in a straightforward manner by those
who are experts in their field, and seniors are no
exception. Sales transactions based on reputation
and trust, are likely to result in long-term
customers who will almost certainly spread the
word about your company and services.
When selling to seniors, keep it simple. Listen
to your prospects. Patience and respect will
go a long way in helping you understand specific
opportunities where your services may be
of use. Without being condescending or patronizing,
explain how your offering will help meet
their needs, increase their security and contribute
to their lifestyle.
Naturally, some elderly homeowners are cautious
when approached by sales representatives. It
is your responsibility to make sure that your sales
representatives and technicians understand, and
are prepared to address this concern directly and
honestly. As security professionals, it falls on us
to set the standard for practices that will enhance
and uphold our mission, which is to protect lives
Here are examples of how your team can arrive
- Have available your solicitors’ permit and/or alarm industry license. If asked,
you should also be willing to
show your driver’s license or
state-issued identification card.
- Your offer should be made
clearly and in writing. When using
eContract, you may provide
the homeowner a quote or allow
time to review the agreement including
the monitoring rate and
term of agreement.
- Provide verbal instructions for the
notice of cancellation as well as
referencing it on the agreement.
- Be prepared to provide your
company’s website and online
ratings. Senior homeowners,
like most, are interested in your
company’s reputation. Transparency
and documentation will
evoke confidence and trust.
EMPHASIZE THE BENEFITS
Many elderly homeowners enjoy
learning about new technology, and
some even consider themselves early
adopters or trendsetters. Today’s
alarm systems and automation products
are so intuitive and convenient
that it truly aids the sales process to
demonstrate how they work using a
hands-on approach. The Internet of
Things (IoT) might seem like techtalk
to us, but end-users are often
positively surprised by today’s advancements
and how our services
are positioned for future automation
and integration. Empower your
prospects with the knowledge to feel
confident in their buying decision.
It may also be useful to acknowledge
the importance of selfcare.
Obviously, it is not selfish or
foolish to invest in personal protection.
When your services can
provide peace of mind and quality
of life, share those benefits with
the homeowner. You may discover
ways to allay concerns through
economically agreeable system design
As you review your marketing
plans and incorporate specialized
training, be cognizant of how you
can prevent elder fraud and become
an ally in the fight to prevent it.
In the end, the most predictive
measure of your success – no matter
which generation of buyer – is
that you provide exceptional service.
When engaging prospects and supporting
customers, be mindful with
your words, be thoughtful in your
intentions and be kind in your approach.
Demonstrate the value added
by your personalized approach
and attention to customer service so
that yours will be the go-to company
in your community.
This article originally appeared in the November 2016 issue of Security Today.