Using Surveys to Improve Your Reputation
Consistent surveys can entice residents to provide positive reviews, which offer a host of benefits.
Reputation management is so important to The Bozzuto Group that it sets a goal for the number of reviews it wants to receive each month. The company’s digital, operations, sales and marketing and onsite staff members are encouraged through gamification to stimulate enough reviews to hit the company’s internal review goal.
“Reviews are built into our customer journey,” says Benjamin Burns, The Bozzuto Group’s Director of Digital Strategy & Technology. “We are nearly 100-percent automated in our review capturing, based on analyzing prospect and resident touch points.”
Why is it so important for companies to generate and capture reviews? In a recent survey, more than 62 percent of 25,000 residents indicated that they use online ratings at the beginning of their apartment search, J Tuner Research’s Priyanka Agarwal wrote for Multifamily Insiders. If that is not enough, Google’s new search algorithms reward companies with good online reviews.
That is why Wood Partners encourages onsite staffers to ask for reviews after they have positive interactions with residents.
“The entire team knows how important it is,” says Christy Ebert, a Manager at Wood Partners. “The key is to not be afraid to ask for them.”
For many companies, the first opportunity to gain reviews is the prospect tour.
“A prospective resident could have had a fabulous time during the property tour, but maybe the floorplan was not what they wanted,” Burns says. “But if the property was clean and the staff friendly, that’s a positive review even if the person doesn’t sign a lease.”
Burns uses post-move-in surveys because it gives residents time to move in to the property, experience community events and meet the staff.
“At that point, they should have a good idea of whether they are going to enjoy their new home and community,” he says.
At Wood, the leasing team asks prospective residents to post a review, particularly if they feel like the prospect had a positive experience.
FPI Management surveys residents at several touchpoints through a resident’s stay.