As a property management professional, your success is measured by your occupancy rate. With over 90% of renters starting their property search online, it’s critical to connect with prospective residents and build community to engage with your existing residents – online and offline. No pressure, right?
We happen to know about a marketing tool rife with opportunity for your target audience that you may have A) written off for reasons we will be making a case for below, or B) just haven’t quite gotten around to yet.
Hint: it achieves greater reach among millennials than TV, gets your message in front of the right people with pinpoint accuracy, and it’s a networking behemoth your community needs to befriend. Like, yesterday.
Have you guessed yet?
Behold the property marketing power of Facebook.
Read on to learn 5 ways you can make the most of the social media giant’s reach to market your property management business or newest property.
As it becomes more entrenched in our daily lives, Facebook has become a de facto source of news for a growing percentage of the public–which includes your residents. As you sit down to crank out your property’s latest memo about building updates like, say, the annual fire alarm testing or scheduled maintenance, don’t forget to copy + paste your message to your Facebook page.
Using your page as an informational hub sends the message to current residents that their needs matter, and it shows prospective residents that keeping your residents in the know is important to you. When your residents know you care, they’re more likely to stick around.
As social media increasingly becomes pay-to-play, organic reach continues to bottom out. If your ad spend is on the lean side, consider unleashing the power of the people. Host Facebook-exclusive giveaways, like a month of free parking or a handsome discount off the first month of rent to give people a reason to ‘like’ your page and follow your activity. Once your fan numbers begin to ramp up, your prospects and existing residents will start realizing that they’ve been missing out.
3. Paid Promotion
Conversely, if you’re planning to saddle up for social advertising, paid Facebook ads are an effective way to get in front of your prospects. Its granular targeting features and ease of use essentially pays for itself. Just make sure you target the right audience by defining who your ideal renters are. Are they millennials looking for their first post-grad apartment? Older professionals more established in their careers? A singular ad can’t appeal to all of the above, so make sure you create separate ads for specific renter groups. The more targeted the ad, the higher the click-through rate.
4. Share Sneak Peek Content
The average video post on Facebook generates 135% greater organic reach compared to photo posts, and users engage with Facebook videos more than any other video sharing platform, including YouTube. In a Home.com and ForRent.com survey, 80% of potential tenants accessed virtual tours and videos from a rental property’s Facebook page.
Are you picking up what we’re putting down? You’re already aware that placing a virtual tour on your website can build interest, but if you’re not also sharing that content on Facebook, you’re not getting your full mileage out of it.
Repurpose your tour video on Facebook to inspire your followers to take note and take action. Consider putting some dollars behind it to increase awareness of your Facebook page and drive more traffic to your website. That way, your prospective residents can have a better look at the units you’re trying to fill.
Thanks to its low barrier of entry, it’s only a matter of time before your followers begin to take to your Facebook page’s ‘Reviews’ feature to share their experience as a resident of your community–for better or for worse, since online reviews tend to veer toward either end of the extreme. And that’s OK. While you can’t control what’s being said about you, you can manage how you guide people to interact with your community and how you respond to their experiences.
While positive reviews are, of course, the ultimate end goal, negative reviews can also be positive for your community. They allow you the opportunity to make a case in the face of criticism, and open up a two-way dialogue with your residents.
If you do catch wind of someone who’s had a positive experience with your community, build up your social proof by requesting they share this experience to your Facebook page. Consider incentivizing with a gift card to sweeten the deal.
Facebook can work wonders to advertise and market your community, bring new prospective residents in and help you master resident retention.