Reputation Accelerator: How a Simple Kiosk Can Transform Community Experience
Director of Marketing - Brightview Senior Living
By Jack Silverstein, Senior Housing News
The food was better with the old chef.
I love that we added pickleball — I hope there are more times to play!
Mom said she’s having trouble with her TV and she doesn’t know who to talk to for assistance.
Senior living staff members might overhear these and any number of similar comments about resident experience, whether from the residents or family members. But they’re only comments made in passing, sometimes privately among friends or family — a conversation in the dining room, a hallway, a games room.
Is this the experience of just one resident, or is it part of a community-wide trend?
Baltimore-based Brightview Senior Living is answering those questions one at a time, one by one by one, in the location where residents and family members are all guaranteed to be: the front desk.
“Our residents and family members, when they’re coming in and out of the building, have to use the Accushield kiosk,” says Brightview Director of Marketing Mike Thompson. “So if you have an independent living resident, being that they’re independent they’re probably leaving the community on a pretty frequent basis. This is a way to get a pulse check on them by facilitating some kind of question to them as part of the check-in process.”
The Accushield kiosk is Brightview’s front-desk system, and its first, most obvious benefit is tracking who is in the building. Moving from a manual log to a digital log brings efficiency and staffing benefits.
And reputational benefits, too.
The logistical benefits of digital check-ins
Manual log books stall the visitor process, creating traffic jams and adding to staff members’ daily tasks. That was a challenge for Brightview even prior to 2020. The pandemic increased those operational stresses, as their front desk concierges saw a lot added to their duties.
Sign-ins also became problematic from a health standpoint, as Brightview sought to reduce any unnecessary face-to-face interactions.
“That was really the main reasoning for why we started engaging with Accushield: to create a healthier and streamlined approach to allow people to enter and exit,” Thompson says.
When people enter or exit Brightview now, they use the Accushield kiosk to sign in and out. They enter what type of person they are with regards to the community — resident, family or guest, staff, vendor, health care provider — and that alone gives the community a digital log of everyone coming in and everyone leaving.
And because the front desk is no longer managing sign-ins, they have more immediate availability to answer questions or answer calls.
“It really segmented what people needed,” he says.
The reputational benefits of digital check-ins
But the data that Brightview is collecting goes beyond logging who enters and exits. With each check-in and check-out comes the opportunity for the operator to ask short, specific, vital questions that capture the daily experience of residents, family members, staff or even prospects.
“We have their attention when they’re leaving the community or entering the community, so it’s very seamless,” Thompson says. “The way that I look at it from a marketer’s perspective: I’m getting a high level of engagement and interaction with that because they have to check in and check out at the kiosk.”
The questions are customizable, both in content and count. They include a standard experience question, where visitors are asked to rank their experience from one to five stars, with reports of one and two stars brought immediately to the attention of the executive director. And then operators can add additional questions about which they are curious, targeted to the user — a resident gets resident-centric questions, a family member gets family member-centric questions, and so on.
But wait, there’s more!
The value reaches beyond just experience surveys, as operators can elect to further engage with users after they complete their survey. The most popular next step is to ask users if they would leave a Google review for the community. Increasing and improving the Google reviews, and ranking for your community, improves your website’s position in Google search results, which delivers:
- Increased visibility to your brand
- More prospects visiting your website
- Higher lead generation
Other engagement options include requesting reviews or rankings on other social platforms (such as Facebook, Yelp or Caring.com), or directing users to a custom online survey (like SurveyMonkey or Google Forms) for more in-depth feedback.
“We initially piloted Reputation Accelerator in eight communities with great success, and then launched all communities, which increased our Google reviews 289%, with an average rating of 4.84 stars in just 1.5 months,” Thompson says. “In addition to the increased online review boost from this launch, we have a better understanding of, and a more frequent understanding of, what our residents and family members are thinking and feeling. We’re just scratching the surface with this and are excited about the future.”
“We initially piloted Reputation Accelerator in eight communities with great success, and then launched all communities, which increased our Google reviews 289%, with an average rating of 4.84 stars in just 1.5 months.”