A Revamped Multifamily Marketing Plan for 2020

Every year, the rental market evolves, presenting new challenges for property managers. As such property managers must fine-tune their multifamily marketing efforts accordingly.

That’s why we’ve compiled a list of 9 effective digital marketing strategies to inspire, attract, and retain new residents this year.

The Current Multifamily Market

To market strategically, it’s important to understand the current industry landscape, as it has shifted in a few notable ways.

In the past, short-term rentals were a stepping stone towards becoming a homeowner. Nowadays, renting is a long-term lifestyle choice

According to a study by Freddie Mac, owning a home is pricier than ever. In the past three years, the cumulative cost to rent has risen 14%, whereas the cost to own has increased by nearly 24 percent! As a result, renting is much more attractive financially.

However, cost isn’t the only factor. The fastest-growing renter segment, high-income earners, is made up of people who earn over $150,000. This influx of wealthy renters shows that owning a home isn’t the ultimate goal anymore. Renting, for this demographic, allows for greater freedom, flexibility, and convenience, unlike home-ownership.

By the Numbers

A RentPath study provided the following insights about the current renting population:

  • Nearly half of renters are 35 years or older.
  • 52% of renters have previously owned a home.
  • 50% of renters move at least every three years.
  • 85% of renters say that their rental home “needs to feel like home.”

These statistics show that more people are renting by choice than ever before. Many residents have the means to buy a house but choose to rent instead. However, they still desire the feeling of “home” that was previously achieved by actual homeownership.

With this in mind, property managers can strategically craft their multifamily marketing tactics to resonate with prospective renters.

Multifamily Marketing Strategies to Implement in 2020

As we enter the new decade, property managers should shift their focus to enhancing the “hominess” of the property’s residences, while also taking advantage of tried-and-true digital marketing techniques.

Here are 9 effective marketing strategies for property managers to try out in 2020.

#1 Cultivate a Sense of Home

In the past, multifamily communities could get away with cold, corporate communication. In order to connect with today’s residents, it’s important for the community to appear warm, friendly, and welcoming.

“There’s no place like home.” Property managers should keep this message in mind when creating website content, communicating with residents, and conducting tours. By infusing the community with a sense of home, residents will receive the living experience they’re looking for and have higher long-term satisfaction with their community.

#2 Host Community Events

Community events are an effective way to bring people together. They foster valuable connections between residents and create positive associations with property management.

Some event marketing ideas include:

  • A monthly movie night
  • A weekly food truck
  • Scheduled workout classes in the gym
  • Holiday-themed parties
  • Community yard sales

These events can bolster the community and build positive rapport with residents. To ensure these events are successful, property managers should promote them ahead of time. By placing flyers in elevators, sending out email invitations, and providing detailed information on the resident portal, property managers will likely see higher resident turn-out

#3 Offer Unmatched Perks and Promotions

Happy residents are worth the price of some well-executed promotions and desirable lobby amenities. Property managers should consider giving residents unexpected, unique perks that they won’t find anywhere else. For example, offering a month of free parking or a complimentary meal voucher to a nice restaurant when a new resident signs their lease.

Property managers should also focus on building relationships with local businesses. By doing so, they’ll be in a better position to offer special promotions to residents. They may also get prospective resident leads from these businesses. For example, if someone is new in town and joins a local gym, the gym manager can promote the property to them.

Here are some strategic businesses property managers should look to build relationships with:

  • Gyms
  • Restaurants and coffee shops
  • Banks
  • Moving companies
  • Storage companies
  • Furniture stores

#4 Invest in Parcel Pending Smart Lockers

Online shopping is more popular than ever. Both renters and homeowners are ordering online packages in droves. However, multifamily residents may be at a greater risk for package theft. How to prevent package theft in multifamily communities? Smart package lockers.

Property managers can improve resident satisfaction by installing Parcel Pending smart lockers on the property. Smart package lockers not only streamline parcel management but also enhance multifamily communities by providing a desirable convenience for residents. They provide safe storage space for delivered packages until residents are available to pick them up. That means residents can have peace of mind knowing their package is secure, as they’ll receive a notification to their smartphone upon delivery. This message will contain a unique access code to open the locker.

With smart lockers, package theft opportunities are eliminated. Package lockers also offer built-in video surveillance, refrigeration capabilities, and 24/7 accessibility. Residents love smart refrigerator parcel lockers for their convenience and flexibility. In fact, package lockers have been shown to increase lease renewals by 40%.

#5 Offer a Resident Referral Program

“Word of mouth” is the most coveted form of marketing. 92% of people trust recommendations from family and friends more than they trust advertising. Multifamily property managers can proactively promote WOM (word of mouth) marketing by offering an incentivized referral program.

Start by encouraging happy residents to refer their friends and family to the property. Motivate them with a discount on rent or some other exciting promotion. Not only will this attract new residents, but it will strengthen resident ties within the community.

#6 Update the Company Website

When residents are looking for a new place to live, they’ll begin their search by checking out property websites. That’s why property managers should ensure their website is beautiful, professional, and properly updated. If not, they’ll likely lose out on potential residents.

A multifamily property website should give a glimpse into how wonderful the community is. It should also enhance the perception of the community. Whether the property is known for its luxurious apartment amenities, business integrity, or affordability, make sure its unique value propositions are spotlighted.

Here are some starting points for conducting a website refresh in 2020, based on RentPath’s Study:

  • Invest in professional photography – 81% of website visitors look for high-quality photos of the community. Make sure photos feature good lighting, great staging, and attractive shots. Ensure that the photographer captures high-value amenities like gyms, pool areas, or smart package lockers. Potential residents will judge the property based on these pictures; maintaining high standards for photos will help ensure your property and website make the right impression.
  • Ensure the website is mobile-friendly – More than half of all web browsing sessions take place on a smartphone or tablet. Thus, it’s imperative to ensure modern business websites are mobile-friendly. Multifamily community websites are no exception.
  • Include up-to-date pricing and availability – 88% of visitors expect detailed pricing and 82% want to see up-to-date availability. Property managers can satisfy prospective residents by making this information easily accessible.

#7 Refresh the Property’s Google My Business Listing

A multifamily community’s Google Business listing is just as important as its website. Google My Business receives tons of traffic from potential residents. Presenting a positive image on this platform will help to draw in more residents.

Property managers can refresh the community’s Google My Business listing by improving the quality of photos and updating availability and pricing details. Also, property managers should take a proactive approach to gathering positive reviews. Ask long term residents to share their experience and motivate them with incentives or a polite request in their lease renewal. Property managers should also prioritize responding to negative reviews with professionalism and a commitment to do better.

By cleaning up the community’s Google My Business listing, property managers can boost their property’s rating and overall appeal to people searching online.

#8 Utilize Remarketing

Remarketing is a form of digital advertising that targets leads who have already interacted with a website but have yet to take concrete action. For example, remarketing ads will show up for someone who visited the community website and began filling out a form but failed to complete it.

By retargeting these people, property managers can focus their advertising and marketing efforts on reaching parties that have already presented interest in the community. Remarketing is available with both Facebook and Google ads.

#9 Start a Company Blog

Content marketing is a reliable way to boost SEO (search engine optimization) and attract interested website visitors. Creating a blog is a great way to get started.

Property managers can start off the property’s blog by writing articles for the audience of people who are looking to move to the area.

A property blog should be an informative resource for residents who want to learn about their new city. By using these articles to offer value to residents, property managers can attract views and visitors who will want to explore other areas of the property website.

Here are some initial blog post ideas:

  • Everything You Need to Know About Living In [Property City]
  • Top 10 Things to Do In [Property City]
  • 20 Moving Tips To Save You Time and Money
  • Top 15 Restaurants to Try in [Property City]
  • Top 7 Gyms in [Property City]
  • Top 20 Attractions in [Property City]
  • 12 DIY Tips for Renters

Multifamily Marketing Made Easy

There are many creative ways to enhance the current resident experience with smart apartment solutions, as well as beef up the community’s online presence to attract new residents. Make the most out of 2020 and try out some of these multifamily marketing strategies today!

For more insights, stay on top of current industry trends with our 5 Renovation Ideas With Millennial Renters in Mind and keep residents happy with our 9 Tenant Retention Ideas that Win Residents Over.

Sources:

Freddie Mac. 2019 Outlook Multifamily Research Center. http://www.freddiemac.com/fmac-resources/research/pdf/2019-Outlook.pdf

Multifamily Executive. Fastest-Growing Renter Segment: High-Income Earners.

https://www.multifamilyexecutive.com/property-management/rent-trends/fastest-growing-renter-segment-high-income-earners_o

PR Newswire. RentPath Study: Recent Renters as Emotionally Invested as Homeowners.

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/rentpath-study-recent-renters-as-emotionally-invested-as-homeowners-300330765.html

The Nielsen Company.  GLOBAL CONSUMERS’ TRUST IN ‘EARNED’ ADVERTISING GROWS IN IMPORTANCE.

https://www.nielsen.com/us/en/press-releases/2012/nielsen-global-consumers-trust-in-earned-advertising-grows/