The New Year is rapidly approaching, bringing with it a multitude of new opportunities and a multitude of problems. In the meantime, however, a new marketing year is thrust upon us, one that deserves more immediate attention if we are to position ourselves for next year.
Now’s the time for some reflection on the year ahead, and it’s also an opportune time for commitment to new and higher goals. Just as many of us pause to formulate New Year’s resolutions in our personal lives, perhaps we should apply the same thinking to our marketing efforts. What should I invest in next year? Was my idea to buy views on youtube a good one? Should I do it again next year? Just as our personal resolutions require commitment, so do our professional ones. Of course, commitment requires that you have a clear goal in mind, so here are some suggested goals to consider in forming your New Year’s Marketing Resolutions.
Use at least one new marketing tool or one new marketing method every year
Our world is changing dramatically and our marketing efforts must also change to simply keep up with the increasing competition. Perhaps we could introduce an interactive way of leasing. We must break out of the same old marketing rut of the past by enhancing our leasing efforts, increasing our income and strengthening our market position. After all, we are rapidly approaching a new multifamily market cycle where there is a slight descent in the market.
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Emphasize and expand decision-making based on solid research data.
Knowing our competitor’s strengths, weaknesses, and directions will help us be proactive, anticipating rather than reacting. Measuring the effectiveness of our communications both on and off line allows us to more efficiently use our often limited financial resources.
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Make a true effort to fully understand our residents and their needs.
Resident visits, surveys, panels, focus groups, database marketing all provide the information we need about our residents. Armed with the correct information, we can better understand the communications they will respond to. We can focus on developing the services they need and even the products that they will buy and help us increase our ancillary income.
Focus our communications on our residents and future residents and not on ourselves.
The prospect is interested in one thing: what’s in it for them. Forget about how great our community is, but concentrate on the benefits the resident receives from our community, apartments and services.
Promptly and completely follow-up on all future resident inquiries generated by advertising, PR, Internet, reviews, locators, mail or word-of-mouth.
We spend thousands of dollars on generating these inquiries, but too often fail to tend to the future residents request. Send the proper information — make the necessary call, email or text. And, do it all before the competition does.
Perhaps one or more of these resolutions will fit your marketing plan. If not, develop your own using these as starting points. Make some resolutions. Set some goals. Commit to accomplishment. Then at year’s end, when you review the results, you can celebrate with a sense of accomplishment and progress, ready to make a new set of marketing resolutions for the next year!
Tami L. Siewruk began leasing apartments more than 30 years ago, and has since held positions up to and including Vice President of Marketing. Now founder and Chief Imagination Officer of Multifamilypro Data Recovery Software, Tami specializes in solutions that increase occupancy, rents and traffic while reducing resident turnover.