How A.I. Can Improve the Lives of Seniors in Retirement Communities (Part Two)

How A.I. Can Improve the Lives of Seniors in Retirement Communities (Part Two)

By: Anthony Herring

This article continues the subject matter first introduced in “How A.I. Can Improve the Lives of Seniors in Retirement Communities (Part One).”

1 – A Solid Pairing

As mentioned at the end of Part One, A.I. has already been implemented within senior living: two prominent programs are used by retirement communities that are quite beneficial to its residents.

The first program, dubbed “Minerva,” is mentioned by the retirement website myLifeSite in a piece they wrote; the program was created by the tech company TSOLife. Minerva acts as an A.I.-based software that collects data on residents within retirement communities. (Said data is collected with residents’ consent.) This software is in use by the retirement organization known as Benchmark. (The U.S.-based org is responsible for maintaining dozens of smaller communities on the East Coast.) They have a program called “Something in Common,” which is a project that aims to connect residents through mutual interests; Minerva is used to collect data on the residents and find possible matches for them through the project.

The second program, created by the tech company CareSmartz360, is called…well, “CareSmartz360.” This software is based upon A.I., and is used for home care usage within retirement communities. As detailed by the company itself, CareSmartz360 helps residents maintain their daily lives through multiple avenues: sending reminders for taking medicines, providing communication methods with friends and family, etc. Not only that—and this is probably the tool’s most beneficial feature—CareSmartz360 is capable of monitoring residents’ activities, which can potentially prevent emergency situations from happening.

For example, take the passive sensor technology that was discussed in Part One. An A.I. system like CareSmartz360 can be applied within a retirement community as a method both to help detect when a resident is about to fall on the floor or perhaps even predict the likelihood of a resident falling (a similar estimation made for if A.I. was applied to smart tech like Google Home in Part One). Depending on the situation, community staff can enact measures based on what CareSmartz360’s data determines and act accordingly.

2 – Proceed with Caution

As with every new technological advancement, there are grounds for caution—and A.I. is no exception. With the software’s usage growing at a rather alarming rate, it is unsurprising to see that people are worried at how frequently it’s appearing in our day-to-day lives.

Sadly, this means that seniors—the most vulnerable demographic regarding technology—are at great risk. A.I. is an incredibly malleable tool, so much so that it can be manipulated to spread misinformation, which the media company Decrypt has discussed in an article on the subject. The author, Nathan Reiff, notes that artificial intelligence can be used to create false news articles, blog posts, videos, etc., and that among certain circles, these pieces can spread like locusts. If seniors were a part of these groups—or even just generally browsing the Internet—and found these pieces, they might actually believe that they’re real. Now, if their loved ones were able to catch them in time, then they can prevent them from falling for misinformation in the future. (However, if they can’t, then these seniors might fall deeper down the rabbit hole, believing these pieces more and more to the point of disaster.)

Another notable danger is one that hurts everyone: the scam. Scams have grown more sophisticated since the Internet became more prominent in our lives, and unfortunately, they show no signs of stopping—especially when A.I. gets thrown into the mix. A.I. is capable of fabricating voices, so scammers can make it sound like anyone they wish. Their cousin? No problem. President Joe Biden? No brainer. Your little brother? Of course. It is a scary and dangerous practice, and with seniors as more-than-possible victims, they are easy targets.

One particularly troubling scam aimed at seniors is called “the Grandma scam,” which Forbes deliberates on in an article regarding A.I. According to its author, Carolyn Rosenblatt, this scheme involves scammers using A.I. to trick seniors into giving money to their “grandchildren.” The “children” in this instance aren’t that at all, and are actually the scammers using fabricated voices. Since seniors aren’t able to tell that the voices are falsified, they fall right into the trap.

Conclusion – Time Will Tell

A.I. is here to stay, and with it now being a part of senior living, it can be an incredibly helpful tool for seniors. Unfortunately, it is important to remain mindful of how it can be manipulated to harm them, and to take the necessary precautions. We shall see just how far A.I. goes in this industry.

The details present in this blog article were comprised of information gathered from the sources listed below. I want to give credit where credit is due.


A Bearded Man Playing Chess · Free Stock Photo (

Artificial Intelligence Used in Senior Living Communities (

TSOLife | Happier more connected senior living community

TSOLife | Minerva–AI for Improved Senior Living

Benchmark Senior Living | Assisted Living and Memory Care Communities

Home Care Management Software for Home Care Agencies | About Us (

Cloud-based Advanced Home Care Agency Software Solution (

Artificial Intelligence Enhancing Home Care for the Elderly (

Cloud-based Advanced Home Care Agency Software Solution (

What Are the Dangers of AI? – Decrypt

Will AI Help Or Hurt Our Aging Parents? (

How A.I. Can Improve the Lives of Seniors in Retirement Communities (Part One)

How A.I. Can Improve the Lives of Seniors in Retirement Communities (Part One)

By: Anthony Herring

Introduction – A Sudden Surge

Over the course of 2023, you’ve no doubt heard about a particular tool that is popping up in various industries: A.I. (short for “artificial intelligence”). With it seen as an eventual technological advancement, this surge was inevitable. A result of that inevitability is the growing presence of A.I. in the senior living industry. It will no doubt revolutionize the way retirement communities take care of their residents, acting as a platform to improve their experiences. Before we can further discuss said improvements, an important question must be answered.

1 – What is A.I.?

The technology firm McKinsey and Company defines A.I. as “a machine’s ability to perform cognitive [thinking and reasoning] functions we usually associate with the human mind.” From this definition, McKinsey considers A.I. to be a part of a long line of “smart machines,” which include devices such as calculators and personal computers.

As mentioned earlier, A.I. has been increasingly utilized in many different industries, and Forbes contributor Bernard Marr talks about these specific usages. He details that the retail sectors have been able to create more specific marketing practices and customer service chatbots; financial companies receive help with financial planning, wealth management, and fraud detection; security divisions can make more powerful surveillance networks and threat detection technology; healthcare providers can better customize treatment plans, collect patient data, monitor mental health, and so much more.


2 – What Technology is Present in Communities?

With A.I. making its way in senior living, it’s important to know what technology is already in use to see how this will soon embed itself on a larger scale.

In an article from December 2022, HealthTech Magazine reported that there will be a substantial digitalization of senior care in 2023. Its authors, Jessica Longly and Liz Cramer noted that there will be a rise in audio and video devices—such as FaceTime on Apple products—that can help seniors to communicate with their family and friends, along with allowing them to interact with smart technology, such as thermostats. Longly and Cramer also discussed how the implementation of A.I. could help with what they called “passive sensor technology,” a tool that can aid workers in preventing senior injuries such as falls.

With 2023 now here, was HealthTech right in their predictions? Well, yes, they were (and there is an example to prove it)! President and CEO Mike King authored an article about his retirement community, Jewish Senior Life, and the advancements it has made it using digital devices. He talks about how residents are able to use a plethora of audio and video tools to converse with friends and family, particularly Google Home (a smart speaker) and a computer system named “It’s Never 2 Late” or “iN2L” (a computer system that can help tailor residents’ interests).

Now, while A.I. doesn’t appear to be directly mentioned as part of Jewish Senior Life’s digital devices, it is easy to see how its presence could be applied: both Google Home and It’s Never 2 Late are smart tech, so A.I. could be used to predict what residents might plan to do that day or perhaps change their pre-adjusted schedule (Google Home) and provide specific—or even block—content based on what residents engaged with in the past (iN2L).

Conclusion – To Be Continued

With that, Part One is concluded. We hope this article has helped to give you a better understanding of A.I.’s growing presence and how it can affect the current technology in use at retirement communities. Part Two will go into more detail about two A.I. programs that certain communities are already using, and the potential dangers that could arise. Stay tuned!

The details present in this blog article were comprised of information gathered from the sources listed below. I want to give credit where credit is due.


A Robot Holding a Cup · Free Stock Photo (

What is AI (Artificial Intelligence)? | McKinsey

15 Amazing Real-World Applications Of AI Everyone Should Know About (

3 Senior Care Tech Trends to Watch in 2023 | HealthTech Magazine

Smart Technology Takes Hold in Retirement Communities (

Smart home automation from Google | Google Home

iN2L | Senior Engagement Technology

Virtual Doors Open Literal Doors:
 10 Characteristics of a Truly Outstanding Senior Community Website

Virtual Doors Open Literal Doors:
 10 Characteristics of a Truly Outstanding Senior Community Website

The very first web page went live 30 years ago. It was dedicated to Tim Berners-Lee’s World Wide Web project. While it was bland and uninviting, in retrospect, we know that this first URL opened the door to today’s websites, which virtually open the door to the whole wide world. 

With nearly two billion websites in existence, the competition to attract the attention of the 4.72 billion web users across the globe is staggering. Unless you’re Craigslist or Wikipedia, whose unattractive physical look is so embedded in public awareness it would be foolish to change design, a modern website needs some curb appeal – and a whole lot more. 

Four years ago, we blogged about the all-important home page. A killer home page is still paramount, but let’s take a fresh look at the multiple characteristics of a truly outstanding website – one that visitors will remember and return to time and again, one that builds trust in your brand and leads visitors to take action. 

For the purpose of this blog, we will focus on the senior living industry. Indeed, most of the features that make a great senior community site apply to all websites, but the onus on the senior space to provide an exceptional online experience is particularly great. As literal doors have been closed to visitors, virtual doors must do the lion’s share of the work attracting prospects. 

Ten Things That Make Your Website Outshine the Rest

  1. Virtual tours. Because COVID has severely restricted (if not completely prohibited) in-person tours of senior communities, virtual tours of indoor and outdoor spaces, common areas, amenities, and individual apartments are absolutely essential. Engaging online tours are more than still photographs; they are interactive, three-dimensional, and offer a 360-degree perspective – as close to the real thing as if one were walking through your property. 
  2. Navigability. Getting lost in an illogical, disorganized website is like driving in a strange city and not knowing your way around – with one major difference: you can immediately click out of a website, never to return again. A move to senior living is one of life’s major decisions and, unfortunately, one that is sometimes made during crisis. The first point of entry should be an easy, orderly glide through your community. Studies have shown that the eye tracks text in a certain pattern, and visual hierarchy in the arrangement of your site’s elements points to what is most important and how to seamlessly find subsequent content. Main and sub-tabs designed with first-time visitors in mind guide prospects through a well-organized, stress-free visit.  
  3. Clean, simple design. An unfussy, uncluttered design throughout your entire site, but especially on the home page, makes for a pleasant, positive user experience. Simplicity in design is fresh, timeless and soothing. There’s also great business benefit in a simple design, as several studies have shown that minimalism garners more conversions by establishing legitimacy and confidence in a brand. Endless clicking and scrolling is distracting and comes off as amateurish and “salesy.” On that note, if at all possible, avoid sponsored ads on your site. 
  4. Uniform branding. Along with a clean design goes visual uniformity across your entire site, including color schemes, typography, logo, and other graphic elements unique to your brand. “Cookie cutter” designs are a dime a dozen and will do nothing to distinguish you from the nearly 30,000 other senior communities in the U.S. 
  5. Animation and interactivity. Today’s Internet users are seeking an “experience,” particularly now when in-person visits and events at your senior community are limited. Animated and user-driven interactive elements bring life to your site and create memorable journeys throughout your pages and in your visitors’ minds. These elements also increase engagement with your community and more clicks to discover what’s around the next corner, so to speak.  
  6. Readability. Small type and hard-to-read fonts are a no for any website, especially those serving older adults whose eyesight may be compromised. A simple, legible font scheme (consistent across your entire site) will serve your visitors’ needs and keep them engaged. It will also lend a more professional, sophisticated appearance, establishing trust and credibility in your brand. 
  7. Great Content. You can use the most awesome typestyle and graphics in the world, but without great content on your site, it may as well be gobbledegook. At its core, the “king” – content – is information that benefits your audiences on its own merit – a takeaway, so to speak, that is meaningful regardless of a lead. Great content creates a positive connection between you and your visitors, the ripple effects of which can be boundless. 
  8. Response Time. Sites that load slowly will be abandoned quickly. Optimal load speed is under three seconds; 40 percent of consumers will reportedly abandon a site if it takes longer than three seconds to load. Response time is a function of underlying infrastructure (e.g., a good content delivery network) and design element choices, among other things, and it is essential not only to keeping visitors on your site, but good SEO. 
  9. Mobile friendly. A whopping 90 percent of Internet users across the globe access the web from their mobile devices. Websites that adapt to whatever device one is using allow for significantly greater reach and more shareability among visitors. In essence, you can’t survive without a mobile friendly website. 
  10. Expert designers. Achieving all of the above is a tall, but very necessary order. It is not a layman’s endeavor, nor the work of a pre-fab template. Professionals trained in web design and management on both the front and back ends are a must for a truly outstanding website. 

IVY’s team of experts in the senior living space can bring excellent web content and design to life, bringing prospects to your virtual community and in your literal doors. 

Contact us today at 630-790-2531 or visit


It’s addicting!  The fast-paced, ever changing world of public relations and marketing captures your interest and keeps you charged up to learn more everyday.  I love to find the best ways to tell our client’s stories and man, they have awesome stories!

It’s my job to discover our client’s goals and then match the best processes to achieve them, within their budgets, of course.  I get to explore traditional, digital and every manner of communication to determine which tactics, whether it is direct mail or TV advertising, a new website or PPC (to name just a few) will efficiently and effectively capture the attention of prospects. 

I also get to work with great people at IVY – they’re creative, fun, caring and super smart.  We’ve all been around the industry a while so there is not a novice among us.  Our clients are very cool too and totally passionate about the services they offer.  We’ve been working with most of them for years so we know they truly care about being innovative and responsible to the markets they service.  I have great admiration for all of them and look forward to every day. 

It’s true what “they” say, if you love what you do, you won’t work a day of your life!


IVY was established in 1990 with a basic premise to offer professional, ethical and highly creative marketing, advertising and public relations services. We have successfully maintained our core values and have been part of many amazing projects, client growth and changes in the world of marketing that continue to happen at lightening speed. Most of our clients serve older adults in some capacity so we keep abreast of the opportunities and challenges they face.   Each day, we keep it real and fun and consistently deliver positive results to our clients and their markets.


As a hybrid graphic and digital designer/web developer with over 17 years of experience, I am always on the lookout for innovative digital and print visual communications. IVY Marketing Group’s broad range of projects keeps my job challenging and rewarding, as each campaign is a new and exciting opportunity to effectively communicate our clients’ messages and help them achieve their goals. It’s my passion!

My body of work encompasses a diverse design style and wide base of clients, ranging from national associations, small businesses and big name brands like Hyatt and LiftMaster. I firmly believe that form follows function and highly value the communicative power of simplicity. 

Areas of professional expertise include Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator, Word Press, Responsive Design, CSS3, and HTML5. The industries I’ve served include senior living, health care, hospitality and finance.


All my life, I have loved writing. As a child, I could often be found in my room “writing a book.” While “novelist” is not (yet) on my resume, I am a storyteller. I believe that everyone and everything has a great story, and it is my joy to find that story and share it with the world.

After earning my bachelor’s degree in journalism and completing my master’s studies in the same field, I joined a small advertising agency with powerhouse clients in the hospitality industry, such as Hyatt, Hilton International and Carnival Cruise Lines. I began as a proofreader and achieved the position of senior copy writer within a year.

After my first son was born, followed by two more, I started a freelance writing business that included (among several others) such clients as Advocate Health Care and Coldwell-Banker Realty. Clients in the education arena included DeVry University’s Becker CPA and Stalla CFA Reviews, DePaul University, and Naperville School District 203, for which I won two state public relations awards.

For nine years, I was employed as Communications Director for a large faith community, where I managed all aspects of internal and external communications. I was writer, editor, designer, web master, and content manager.

As such, I am experienced and comfortable writing multimedia for a broad variety of industries, products and services.

I joined IVY Marketing Group in 2013, when I began writing client press releases on a freelance basis. I loved the work—and my teammates—so much, I was thrilled when I was invited to come on board in a greater capacity.

I have immensely enjoyed getting to know our valued clients in the senior housing industry, the people they serve, and telling the many wonderful stories that come out of content marketing done right—with the love and care our IVY teams puts into everything we do.


It all starts with one idea. Working with the Ivy creative team for over two decades has always meant taking one great idea and bringing it to life to help our clients meet their goals. We enjoy the challenges offered with every creative opportunity and try to make the design process itself enjoyable for our clients.


Making certain that the projects IVY produces are word- and picture-perfect is my specialty. But I also love implementing marketing campaigns and programs that bring our clients success. Details are my thing, so it is a pleasure to have worked with IVY twice now, first after college four years ago and, recently, for the past two years.

The IVY Group is a terrific team of creative, positive and talented professionals that I love working with and, judging from the length of stay of our clients, I think they love our team, too!


Rock-climbing, training for an 80-floor stair climb event, running a 5K…This is just a tiny peek into what people 20 and even 30 years older than I am, are doing on a fairly regular basis at some of the retirement communities that IVY represents.

I’m of the generation that still has reoccurring nightmares about what the next step looked like when my grandmother could no longer live by herself. The very best option at that time was living at a “facility” and  included eating rubbery chicken and playing an occasional game of BINGO. Period. That’s why my parent’s generation begged us not to ever put them into “one of those places.”

I am so proud that IVY’s clients are at the very forefront of an industry that creates opportunities, challenges, and most of all freedom for seniors, allowing them to explore hobbies, interests, passions…the next chapter of their very full lives.

I feel reassured for my own future. Even more, I feel honored to be able to share the impactful stories about this paradigm shift in the world of senior housing. What we hear and see at our clients’ communities is fascinating and inspiring!


Keeping up to date on new public relations strategies, online engagement tactics, and promotional tools is my passion.

With my hospitality background in marketing top Chicago restaurants and hotels, I was eager to bring fresh concepts and communication strategies to our clients and have really enjoyed learning various industries.

Our clients have such exciting and unique events and programs, which really makes it motivating for me to make the most of their content.  Results like increased sales leads, website visits and social media connections make everyday rewarding and interesting.


I oversee, plan and implement projects and processes at IVY.  Often,  I am the conduit between our writers and designers, with printers, and other vendors to fulfill the marketing needs for our clients. I also manage media buys and coordinate production of advertisements.

Working for a flexible and fluid company that is constantly growing, changing and evolving is fun and rewarding. There is always something new to learn.


My bio has a big blank in the beginning—Mom and Dad rescued me in Wisconsin, and no one really knows my origins. They were probably ruff. What matters though is where I am now, running IVY Marketing Group. There are humans here who think they’re in charge. In truth, they do actually have amazing experience in content marketing and public relations, but I’m super important and the center of attention. I mean, look at this face. Right? And I know I’m the top dog because honestly, I’m the only one allowed to sleep through staff meetings and eat things that people drop on the floor.

The fact is though that I truly love staying awake at staff meetings. Everyone talks and laughs and they’re always excited. That surprises me a little because it’s not like anyone has thrown a ball to play fetch or anything. But I guess what gets my pack of peoples’ tails wagging is their work and their clients. I don’t know what a website or a blog is, but I do know that my pack must be good at them because they’ve earned all sorts of awards for these and other things. My bed had to be moved because the framed certificates were taking up so much room. Despite the inconvenience, I’m proud of these awards!

I serve several important purposes at IVY. I always let Mom (and the world) know when the mailman is here. When people come into the office, just one (usually) quick non-invasive (usually) sniff, allows me to determine important characteristics…like if they had anything good for breakfast, own any pets (pet owners are the best!) or if they stepped in anything on the way in. (It’s sort of like me conducting a first job interview.) I generously share my tummy because I know people like to give it a good scratch. I always give kisses, whether one is feeling lonely or not. And I’m always happy to share someone’s meal, especially if they’re trying to lose weight. My pack describes me as being engaging, amusing, and entertaining. (When I hear a siren, I “sing” along and it makes them laugh.) NPR talks about the benefits of having a pet at the workplace. Studies show pets lower stress hormones and improve morale and productivity. I wholeheartedly agree that a dog in the workplace is the best thing since rawhide bones.

As for my pack of people at IVY…they are amazing and always make my tail wag!


I could not be more thrilled to work alongside the IVY team.

For over 25 years, I have been employed in top executive positions across the Chicago area and have consistently built profitable businesses, generated sales, and developed and launched new product lines.

Strategically positioning companies and commodities for growth is a strong suit I’m eager to bring to ResponderHub™, IVY’s new crisis communications solution. I’m also excited to help expand IVY’s reach in the senior marketing industry.

I believe people are more open than ever to thinking outside the box and looking at new ways to reach their customer base, while at the same time reducing their cost of sale. The senior industry is exploding, and IVY is perfectly positioned to respond to the need for innovative, quality content marketing services and effective crisis communications.


I love being able to use my skills to help improve other people’s lives, and with a growing elderly population, it’s important to create meaningful and user-friendly digital solutions to aid the senior living industry.I have a wide range of technology and design skills with a deep interest in Human-Computer Interaction– helping IVY provide outstanding web design and print design services. IVY has a long-proven track record of excellence, and I’m proud to be able to help carry on that tradition.