Multifamily professionals can no longer just “wing it” when it comes to social media. With more and more multifamily marketers shifting their budgets and ad dollars to the web, it’s not enough to just haphazardly throw up a few Facebook posts each month and expect to see results.
Social media might seem pretty straightforward, but like any marketing endeavor, we encourage you to have a strategy.
What Are Your Goals?
When it comes to defining your goals, don’t forget to be measurable, specific, and realistic. For most multifamily professionals, KPIs like occupancy rate and resident turnover are crucial, but it’s important to dive deeper to think about how your online platforms impact those KPIs to determine campaign goals.
So, what are you looking to accomplish through your marketing efforts? We suggest the following to each of our clients:
Increased Website Visits
Is your website well-optimized to convert visitors into leads? Do you offer online tools for maintenance requests and rent payment to make your residents (and property managers) lives easier? Getting more traffic to your site — from both new prospects and current renters — should be a primary goal. Social media can be a great avenue for generating targeted, quality website visitors.
One of the biggest perks of social media as a marketing channel is the ability to create an engaged, online community of the individuals that build up your target audience. For example, Criterion.B launched a “Mark the Moment” campaign for Preston Hollow Village (PHV), a Dallas-based mixed-use development. The goal was to spark engagement among customers and retailers.
The campaign encouraged patrons to share their moments with #MarkTheMoment at any of the PHV retailers. This campaign not only resulted in more engaged residents and locals but also a 50 percent increase in website traffic.
Enhanced Customer Experience
Social media marketing can certainly be used as a lead generation strategy, but we’d argue that one of the main goals should not be lead focused but focused on providing a better resident experience.
As it turns out, social media is a crucial part of improving the resident experience. The internet allows word-of-mouth communication to spread easier than ever, both positive and negative.
In the multifamily industry, negative commentary from residents is commonly found online via sites such as Yelp, Twitter, and Google business pages. Residents who are frustrated with a property’s maintenance issues or poor customer service often express those feelings publicly online. The way a multifamily property responds will ultimately determine how a negative comment affects your business.
Where Does Social Media Fit Into Your Online Marketing Strategy?
In the world of digital marketing, it can be hard to know which tactic works best. Many multifamily properties mistakenly focus too much of their efforts on one specific tactic like blogging or social media.
Each part of your marketing strategy should fit together into one cohesive piece. Your website, social media presence, user experience, customer experience, etc., should operate in harmony in order to establish a successful online marketing strategy. This is also helpful for determining which channel or advertising method makes the most sense for your apartment community.
How Does Your Online Presence Encapsulate Your Brand?
You didn’t think we would let you forget about the importance of your brand, right? The most distinct online presences are the ones that adhere to a visual style and brand. For example, you could strip Kate Spade’s Instagram account of every mention of the brand and fans would still be able to identify it based on the company’s distinct visual style.
It’s not just fashion brands that have a strong online presence. To separate Preston Hollow Village from surrounding retail competitors, our team at Criterion.B branded the mixed-use development as colorful, vibrant, and dynamic. With directed campaigns, a targeted advertising strategy, and influencer outreach, we leveraged digital platforms to delight and attract a strong audience.
Determining Your Budget
The most important thing to remember when determining your social marketing budget is that you should look beyond your marketing budget. While social media is certainly a viable marketing strategy, it is also part of your customer service strategy. Budget accordingly!
When it comes to developing a social media strategy, take a data-driven approach and think holistically about where social media fits into your larger online strategy. Who is your buyer persona? What goals are you trying to accomplish? How can social media help you accomplish these goals? Once your strategy and team are aligned, you can position your property for digital marketing success.
Download our social media guide to learn the dynamics of social media and how to market each post to multiple personas.