A Case for Unified Marketing

Bill Bengen

 

When people search for their ideal retirement community, they often scour the internet for listings of “The Best Retirement Communities.” In this essay, we will exam three of those sources, to gain a sense of how SaddleBrooke is faring against its competition.

 

55places.com:

 

One of the most popular websites is “55places.com”, which publishes an annual list of “The Best 55+ Communities” in the entire nation. A total of fifty-five communities are included in the list, and they are ranked from #1 through #55.  The methodology for the ranking includes multiple factors, including site analytics, sales data, and independent research of communities.

 

Here is how SaddleBrooke has ranked on this list since 2017:

 

2017:         #3

2018:         #9

2019:         #18

2020:         not ranked

2021:         #50

 

Following is a graphic summarizing these statistics:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As is evident, SaddleBrooke’s rankings have plunged since 2017.  Last year our community just managed a place near the very bottom of the list. In 2020 it failed to make the list at all! As a SaddleBrooke resident, it is concerning to see this downward trend. Are there really 49 retirement communities in this country that are better than our beloved SaddleBrooke?

 

In addition to these disappointing rankings, the narrative about the community on 55places.com contains several factual errors, which have persisted for several years. For example, it describes the community as having only 27 holes of golf, when in fact SaddleBrooke has 63. Also, there is mention of a “9-hole Tuscan Golf Club”, which does not exist. Why have these errors not been corrected?

 

AARP:

 

The American Association of Retired Persons recently began rating of adult communities on a 100-point “Livability Index.” It incorporates data from seven categories: neighborhood, transportation, environment, health, social engagement and opportunity. Here is how SaddleBrooke stacked up against four local competing adult communities:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All these scores seem unreasonably low, but what stands out is that SaddleBrooke has the lowest score of all. It is substantially out rated by its sister community of SaddleBrooke Ranch, which, although a fine development, lacks the stunning mountain views of SaddleBrooke. What is going on here?

 

Ideal Living:

 

Ideal Living publishes a list of the “Top Planned Communities in the West.” This is an unranked, unrated list, currently consisting of twelve communities. Does SaddleBrooke make the list? Sort of. SaddleBrooke TWO appears on the list! There is no mention of SaddleBrooke One. The description on the site was clearly written by a representative of SaddleBrooke 2, so kudos to them for getting included. But isn’t this confusing to prospective homebuyers?

 

 

Summary:

 

SaddleBrooke as a whole is faring poorly on the internet. Its rankings and ratings seem inexplicably low and are trending in the wrong direction. Factual inaccuracies about our community appear on several websites. Nowhere on the internet can a prospective buyer find information about SaddleBrooke as a whole. Instead, SaddleBrooke One and SaddleBrooke Two pursue their own disjointed online marketing strategies.

 

We contend that SaddleBrooke’s internet presence is vital to its long-term attractiveness to homebuyers. SaddleBrooke’s online ratings are sagging, information about our community is inaccurate, and there is no master website for homebuyers to visit that is descriptive of the whole community.  This is bound to frustrate and confuse potential buyers.  In turn, this lack of unity puts  SaddleBrooke at a huge competitive disadvantage vis a vis other local community which are marketing in a comprehensive manner.  All of this potentially affects our home sales in the future.

 

This is a problem which needs to be remedied. One sure solution is a unified SaddleBrooke government which aggressively markets our entire community and all its many appealing features. The current disjointed marketing efforts are ineffective and inefficient and . We can do better by taking a unified marketing approach when it comes to promoting SaddleBrooke.  It’s time to give SaddleBrooke- all of SaddleBrooke- its due.

55places graph.png
Saddlebrooke livability.png
Ideal Living clip.png