Multifamily marketers and community managers live a life where there’s always far more that needs to be done, than there is time to do it. In addition to a constantly growing to-do list, disruptions and surprises frequently occur. Finding ways to use time more efficiently or, even better, eliminating the need to do certain things is a requirement for success…and sanity.
While strategy is often thought of as a way to improve the results from marketing efforts, it’s often overlooked as an area that can save time, energy, and enable marketers to fully delegate or eliminate tasks that need to be done. It is crucial that operators constantly control costs while simultaneously looking for areas that can also drive performance improvements.
How can you market your properties effectively, while keeping your leasing office and day-to-day operations running smoothly? Here are 5 ways to increase your marketing efficiency, without sacrificing quality and effectiveness.
1. Know Your Potential Residents
Many examples exist where multifamily marketers spend too much time trying to reach people that simply don’t fit the type of person that would enjoy living in their communities.
What is it that makes your community unique? And who does it appeal to? Is it the millennial searching for their first independent “home away from home?” Are your properties designed for the soon-to-be “empty nesters” looking to downsize?
It’s critical to determine who your audience is, what they’re looking for and then properly align your amenities and location. In addition, consider incentivizing your current residents to refer potential lessees into your communities. This also increases resident satisfaction and engagement, and creates a strong list of potential leads.
Knowing who cares the most, what they care about and where to find them will eliminate wasted time trying to speak to people who simply don’t want or need your information.
2. Streamline Your Processes
A typical property will engage with between 7 – 12 vendors to support their non-media (such as multiple designers, promotional vendors, print vendors, name tag companies, mat companies, apparel vendors, etc.) marketing needs. Additionally, it is not unusual for leasing associates or community managers to “make a run” to the local Home Depot or JoAnn fabrics to pick some things up.
This creates increasing degrees of havoc, confusion and lost productivity, putting everyone in a position of playing “catch up.” What’s worse, because of the anarchy associated with this approach, operators don’t have the data to know what’s really happening. This results in higher costs and greater inconsistency.
Streamlining and centralizing the procurement, logistics and management of these various purchases saves time, creates consistency, enables team members to stay focused on the most important tasks, and ensures that everyone has the right data and information to continually optimize the process. For example, with Benson’s Centralized Marketing Platform (CMP), managing your marketing projects becomes simple and efficient. The online Smart Store and purchasing guides allow everyone to order and manage products related to tactical execution. Having one place to call, or one person to talk to is a huge time-saver.
One-stop shopping makes the procurement and production process smooth and efficient, freeing up time for strategy and project planning instead of administrative execution, without sacrificing quality. This gives you more time to drive lead generation efforts and increase foot traffic to your properties.
3. Invest Time in Your Marketing Campaigns
Your marketing strategy needs to be all-inclusive and use multiple channels, including tactical execution of a social media strategy. Ensure your posts, tweets or pins are being seen by your target audience, by implementing social media best practices, keyword research, and even PPC tactics. Develop must-read content that drives traffic to your website or ILS and in turn, increases foot traffic to your properties. Finally, analyze the benefit of your strategy through marketing KPIs, and be sure to show the value of your strategy.
Once all channels are streamlined and your “road map” is established, you’ll be able to direct the marketing content and message to a large group of prospects in a short amount of time.
4. Ensure Brand Standards Are in Place
One thing that can truly hamper effective marketing efforts is dealing with mistakes or inconsistencies. While it seems like a simple color variation on your logo would be easy to fix, in reality “little” mistakes like this can be costly and waste valuable time.
Brand standards that are managed and maintained save time and allow you to showcase the value of your marketing strategy. A more efficient workflow provides additional control over marketing standards and budget, and allows you to spend more time considering strategy instead of dealing with errors.
Having a single branding guide, marketing executive or team is not enough to maintain brand standards. You must use an advanced smart store to manage the thousands of marketing transactions that will take place annually.
5. Track and Listen to the Data
There’s no question that multifamily marketing is becoming increasingly important in your operator’s overall business strategy. Limiting vacancies through effective lead generation is critical to ensuring the success of your properties.
One way to show the value of your marketing efforts is by tracking, managing and controlling your marketing spend data. Ensuring you have the right platform and process to record and track marketing spend over a wide variety of categories enables you to make better, faster decisions. This provides insight into what’s working, what’s not working and allows you to make necessary adjustments that increase overall tactical efficiencies.
Increasing marketing efficiencies is possible when you use the right partners and the right tools. Let your multifamily marketing efforts drive effective lead generation and increase foot traffic, and show the true value of a competent and valuable team.