Snapchat is quickly becoming the “go-to” marketing platform used to reach the coveted millennial target audience. Since its launch in 2011, Snapchat now has a base of more than 100 million monthly users, 63% of which are between the ages of 13 and 24.
Multifamily marketing professionals, take note! This is extremely important considering millennials are the largest demographic living in multifamily housing. Communicating with your target audience through a medium that resonates with them will not only increase current resident satisfaction and engagement, but also drive foot traffic to your properties through social sharing.
Why should you, the expert in multifamily marketing, add one more bullet point on your already long list of social media marketing tactics? Because Snapchat can’t be ignored. Here’s why:
Target Market Match
There’s simply no denying the usage and subsequent impact that Snapchat is having with millennials and Gen Z. Multifamily demand for millennials is rising; in the next 10 years, millennials will raise the ranks of the households aged 18 to 44 by 4.1 million.
Rarely can you match a specific marketing tool that is so deeply imbedded with your target audience. In addition, the Gen Z demographic (ages 13-17) will begin looking for student housing and afterwards, transition into their chosen career and resulting housing on their own.
Through Snapchat, you can supply relevant content via a communication tool that your residents and prospects are completely comfortable using. You’ll be speaking to them in a language and through a medium that they can easily relate to and in turn, easily share with their friends.
Engagement through Snapchat? Really? How can a photo that lasts mere seconds on your mobile device create engagement – at such a high level – with your audience? That’s the inherent beauty of Snapchat…because the “snaps” are so quick, your audience is much more intentional with their usage of the app. If it’s only available for a short time, you’d better believe they’re tuned in.
Of the millions of users of Snapchat, the average amount of in-app time spent daily per Snapchat user is 25 minutes. And that’s usage with a purpose – not just a quick scan of the latest “likes.” In addition to the short direct messages, Snapchat now includes a “story” feature where users can post public messages that are available for 24 hours.
Snapchat stories give you the opportunity to create a true “story” about your property and the people who work there that builds trust and a positive relationship with potential residents. Want to share more personalized information about the property management staff, or the results of the community-wide recycling event? Creating a story on Snapchat can do just that. A.J. Keilty, CEO of Varsity Properties in Kingston, Ontario, Canada has experienced great success using Snapchat, specifically using stories. “Our engagements on Snapchat are through the roof,” said Keilty. “That’s because, if you don’t watch something right now, you’ll miss a chapter of the story.”
Delmondo’s Snapchat Year in Review shows the impact of Snapchat stories - if you have 1,000 followers on Snapchat, 900 of them will watch your story.
Start by showcasing property management staff or community special events through stories. Using the Snapchat story to highlight new listings or community amenities is also a way to further engage your potential residents and encourage them to visit your property.
Residents Take Ownership Through Snapchat
Effectively communicating information to your residents takes time, even in this age of instant-everything and immediate gratification. When you can actively communicate with them through a platform like Snapchat – especially because they are so familiar with it – sharing information becomes much easier.
Encourage your residents to take ownership of your community presence within the app. Encourage them to send private snaps to the management team regarding noise complaints or personal property needs. Empower your leasing staff to connect with residents through Snapchat to easily communicate and build relationships.
When your millennial residents are comfortable and engaged within your community, they’ll definitely tell their friends…sharing your social media savvy and attention to their needs with their friends. Social sharing means residents are satisfied, and will increase engagement and foot traffic to your properties.
Recently, Snapchat introduced their Geofilters option for users. Geofilters allow users to create custom-branded artwork that will appear as an optional filter within the app, (like the ‘regular’ filters) but in a specific region. Users can then use that geofilter in the message that they snap to friends.
Knowing your audience and where they may be spending their time – the local coffee shop, for example – can help you leverage the use of a Geofilter to showcase your property and your overall brand. Using the coffee shop example, you can easily design and utilize a geofilter that immediately pops up in the app when your potential residents walk into the shop. Suddenly your potential residents are snapchatting about not only where they are, but can show how close your properties are to this trendy, local shop.
As renowned Snapchat guru, Gary Vaynerchuk (@garyvee) puts it, “Compared to other mediums, a custom Snapchat Geofilter is a branded impression on steroids.”
Finally, Snapchat is easy to use and provides incredible impact for very little time and effort. The nature of the platform encourages quick tidbits, does not require a lot of training, and there’s no need to appear “polished.” Multifamily marketers who make this a part of their tactical marketing strategy will see increased resident engagement and more foot traffic, without having to make a huge monetary investment.
Snapchat isn’t going away any time soon – be sure to add Snapchat to your overall social media marketing strategy. This highly engaging platform will foster stronger relationships with your residents which increases satisfaction; directly impact your target audience to generate more leads and increased foot traffic; and create a high level of ROI because of its ease of use…clearly demonstrating the value of marketing and creating a more effective and efficient team.