Have you ever noticed marketing efforts change quite frequently? As technology changes, people change, and the economy changes, so to will your marketing strategies. Today, this is more true than ever before with social distancing and unaccompanied tours and more and more leasing efforts being handled virtually.
What I think is important to remember is regardless of how tech savvy your marketing efforts are, you still need to have some good old fashioned property management sales skills to close the deal.
It never fails, you receive an email at the first of the month letting you know your team needs to get at least 25 move ins this month to make the owners occupancy goals. You already know if you don’t, you’re going to be further behind in making next months goals, so you have got to hit your numbers this month. You’ve got the team in place that can lease dirt to a worm, but do you know how to figure out how many pieces of traffic you need in order to get those 25 move ins? There is a quick and easy formula to figure this out and all you need to know is your closing ratio and how many move ins you need.
A few years ago I got put on a property that had to bring in 30 move ins a month. Talk about stressful! So, I designed a spreadsheet (for those of you who know me this is not shocking – I have a spreadsheet for just about everything) to help my team break down the daunting task by week. By breaking it down weekly it makes the goal a bit easier to digest. For example, if there are 3 leasing agents, 4 weeks in the month, and 25 move ins needed, that breaks down just 2 per week for each leasing agent. See – that was easy! Now that you’ve got it broken down into a bite size piece, how many prospects do you need to get the 2 per week for each leasing agent?
Simple, just take the total leases needed and divide it by the closing ratio! So, if the team’s closing ratio is 33% (which is way below what it should be…need to get this over 65% at a minimum), and you need 25 move ins for the month, then you need to bring in 76 pieces of traffic. That’s only 19 pieces of traffic a week – piece of cake for a talented team of leasing professionals!
Next, you need to decide where you are going to go to get that traffic. You’ve got walk ins (maybe – just depends on your state requirements during Covid-19), you’ve got emails, phone calls, websites, Facebook pages, etc. You want to make sure you are maximizing all the social media avenues you can in order to make your goals!
Next step, devise a plan of action to make sure you and your team are responding promptly to each and every prospect request that contacts you. Set aside dedicated time throughout the day to answer emails, check the website, and don’t forget to make sure you are updating your online ads daily with your availability (this tends to get forgotten sometimes). If you have a few available units but your advertiser’s website shows none available, prospects will go look elsewhere. Get with your company’s marketing department as they may have additional guidance on how they want availability portrayed online.
You could send out an E-Postcard – those are not only fun to make, but people like them. There are quite a few sites out there that do this, I use Smilebox.Com. You can go look at one I did today by clicking here. I know Apartments.Com has an absolutely fantastic marketing platform where you can get videos, flyers, just about anything you need to do some great marketing. You have to have an advertising account with them and have access to their Media Library, but well worth it!
You can also make your own flyers to do outreach marketing. I suggest you put them on different color paper and keep your colors separated by location. This way you can track which location generates more interest. You can make quick “goodie bags” and do some barter marketing with local businesses. Just ask them if you can take some of their information back to your property (free advertising for them) if they’ll let you leave some of your information in their waiting area.
VistaPrint is another great and very inexpensive site where you can design direct mail postcards, flyers, brochures, rack cards…just about anything you might need to use with your marketing efforts.
The list of things you can do goes on and on of things you can do to attract prospects. Be creative, know your competitors, know your property, and always remember to be remarkable!
Stay tuned … more marketing madness to come!
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