It should be obvious as a property manager that one of the most important things you need to do is establish a marketing plan. This goes for whether you manage one or two individual properties or if you manage several large buildings with multiple rentals units. I’m not going to argue that a plan is necessary – to me this is common sense. If you don’t establish a plan for something, it simply will not happen, and you will not grow your business.
Your primary responsibility as a manager is to keep rented properties filled with happy tenants, and this involves finding new tenants, filling vacancies, and keeping people living at the property. Every step of your marketing plan is going to shape the image of your management company.
I like to look at marketing in three distinct sections – and this effectively mirrors the primary stages of your responsibilities in managing tenants. First, you must find prospective tenants and compel them to visit your property. Next, when you have attracted people to your property, you need to have a plan in place for turning them into tenants. Finally – and I believe this is often the ignored part of marketing – you need to have a plan in place for after you have made someone a tenant.
Let’s back up and look at the whole picture of managing rental properties. Your goal is to make sure each unit is filled with a tenant, that they are happy (this should be one of your goals anyways), and that they renew their lease every cycle (insofar as this is possible). Property management marketing is no different than marketing for any other type of business – with the possibly unique exception that your customers stay with you for a long time.
The reason for splitting up your marketing plan into three sections is so that you can segment your intentions. If you look closely, your intention is different in each of those sections.
- The first section, your intent is to attract new business and get them to visit your property.
- In the second, your intent is to turn those visitors into customers.
- In the third section, your intent is actually to make your customers so enamored of you that they champion your business to other people – either by word of mouth or reviews, etc – and so that they feel compelled to stay with you.
So you see that by splitting up our approach to the plan, we are able to strategically craft each section to be the most effective, yet so that the entire system flows together. Over the course of this week I will talk about each of these sections and share some ideas and concepts for creating truly powerful marketing strategies.
Tomorrow, we will start with the first stage – attracting new people and compelling them to visit your properties.