Senior living sales enablement firm Sherpa has hired market data expert Lana Peck with the goal of broadening its research and analytics services.
The St. Louis-based company on Monday announced Peck is joining as vice president of research and analytics. Peck previously spent six years at the National Investment Centers on Seniors Housing (NIC) as a senior principal, where she tracked and analyzed senior living market trends.
While at NIC, Peck authored more than 120 articles on senior housing data and trends, along with publishing the NIC Investment Guide. At Sherpa, she will put those talents to work by taking the lead on the company’s annual Best Sales Performers Report.
“We’re thrilled and fortunate to add Lana to our team,” Sherpa CEO Pedro Soares told Senior Housing News. “She brings this unique perspective both from the capital and operator side of the business, but more importantly she really shares our passion to understand the customer and the customer journey.”
Peck’s hiring represents an effort from Sherpa to double down on data collection and analysis. In addition to hiring her, the company plans to double its current employee count by adding five new staffers who will help deepen the company’s new efforts in data.
The ultimate goal with Peck’s hire is to turn data into insights and strategies for Sherpa customers, and for the wider industry. Through having collected so much data over the years, Sherpa Co-Founder and Principal Alex Fisher told SHN said expanding the data team is “really moving the needle” on the company’s ability to analyze information quickly and efficiently.
Peck said she sees a need for more clarity and transparency around resident and prospect data and key performance metrics that help inform and guide senior living sales and marketing teams.
“The data are not easily accessible and often lacking context, [and] so much of it resides in operator databases and is not pooled or aggregated for benchmarking,” Peck told SHN. “I see the opportunity at Sherpa to analyze a high-quality, deep database and present the industry with meaningful analysis within the context of the market fundamentals, too.”
Fisher said she also envisions Peck and her team being able to provide actionable insights for senior living customers on a more routine basis. For example, the company is planning on publishing its Best Sales Performers Report on a more regular basis.
Peck also will help create more frequent and bite-sized pieces of information that senior living operators, owners and investors can use to inform their sales and marketing strategies as the industry evolves. Specifically, she wants to study how resident characteristics such as age, acuity and length of stay have changed since Covid.
“I’m also very excited about my team providing clarity into sales and marketing KPIs to help advance outreach with the ultimate goal of getting more older Americans moved into senior housing and increase penetration,” Peck said.
With all the pressures on the operating side, from tight margins and occupancy fluctuations to rising labor costs and expenses, identifying what drives top performance is important, Soares said. And with Peck on board, Sherpa hopes to identify more benchmarks around which the industry can build better sales strategies during a critical time for innovation.
“Without a doubt, the senior living industry is undergoing a massive transformation that will lead us in directions we haven’t even thought about yet,” Peck said.
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