Create a comprehensive and effective plan to reach a target audience.
The internet has revolutionized how apartments are marketed, moving beyond print ads and word-of-mouth referrals to an ability to reach a global audience with the click of a button. However, this revolution doesn’t mean that online apartment marketing is easy; in fact, it can be quite challenging to stand out in such a crowded marketplace.
Apartment marketing is all about creating a comprehensive and effective plan to reach the target audience. There are several ways to go about this, but the most important consideration is to ensure the marketing strategy is tailored to the specific needs of the prospective community.
So, what are the best strategies for marketing apartments online? Here are five ideas to get started:
1. Create a Compelling Multifamily Website
The community’s website often is the first impression that prospective residents have of the property. It’s therefore important to ensure it's up-to-date, user-friendly and informative.
Include high-quality photos and videos of the property, as well as detailed descriptions of the floorplans, amenities and location. And be sure to include an easy-to-use contact form so that interested prospects can reach out with any questions.
2. Invest in Pay-Per-Click Advertising
Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is a great way to get a multifamily property in front of prospective residents who are already searching for apartments online. And, because fees are only generated when someone clicks on the ad, it can be a very cost-effective way to market a community.
When creating PPC ads, be sure to use relevant keywords and target the ads to the right geographic location. Negative keywords can also be used to exclude people who are not interested in the community (e.g., "studio" if there are only one-bedroom units available).
3. Use Social Media as an Advantage
Social media is a powerful tool that can be used to reach a wider audience and build relationships with prospective residents. Use platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to share compelling content about the property. And be sure to use relevant hashtags so that prospects can easily find the posts.
Keep in mind that social media for apartments is like a cocktail party: 20% of the conversation should focus on you while the other 80% should be about who you’re talking to.
Think of social media as an opportunity to delight residents by sharing great happy hour specials, the top dog parks nearby or community events like 5Ks, wine walks or trivia nights. Fostering resident relationships ultimately translates into retention, so put their needs in the spotlight, and the reward may very well be their loyalty.
4. Optimize Listings on Apartment Rental Sites
Many prospective residents start their apartment search on popular internet listing services (ILSs), so it's important to ensure a presence on these sites.
And, once the units are listed, be sure to optimize the listings with high-quality photos, videos and detailed descriptions. Also included should be contact information so that interested prospects can easily get in touch.
5. Implement an Effective SEO Strategy
Search engine optimization (SEO) is critical for any multifamily community that wants to be found online. By optimizing the website and content for the right keywords, the website can attract more visitors from search engines.
Google is an exhaustive resource when it comes to the search and delivery of information, especially in the multifamily market. However, what most people fail to realize is that Google requires assistance from sites to successfully find the right information, crawl the site and spit it out where and when it’s appropriate.
The means by which search engines accomplish this is known as SEO, and it requires a lot of work — including the correct tags for a website to read, a submitted sitemap and keywords.
If uncertain where to begin with SEO, consider working with a marketing agency that specializes in this area. It can help create content that is both search engine-friendly and informative for prospective residents.
Watch Multifamily Property Occupancy Rate Soar
By following these multifamily marketing strategies, a larger audience of prospective residents can be reached, thereby increasing the chances of filling vacant apartments and the chances of filling units. Don't wait to get started: Implement these ideas today and watch the multifamily property occupancy rate soar.
Ashley Tyndall is Director of Business Development for Criterion.B.