Social media has taken a considerable shift over the past few years. In addition to offering a platform for friends and family to interact with one another, it is now a place for users to be inspired, educated, and informed about the events and opportunities happening around them. Social media users flock to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and various other outlets to read the news, find new events in their area, shop for products, and so much more.
With the wealth of opportunities available in the form of videos, photos, blog posts, and other engagement options, marketing managers have a wide range of advertising choices to choose from. Most importantly, marketing managers can use social media to foster an authentic community for their current and prospective residents, helping tenants to connect with and learn from one another in new ways.
In doing so, not only can marketing managers help inform residents and create a community of trust—they can also effectively market their properties to other prospective renters seeking to partake in the community.
Here are some ways in which marketing managers and real estate developers can foster an authentic community among current and prospective residents:
With over 100 million users in the United States, Facebook is one of the most widely-used social media platforms available.
Facebook groups are a great way for marketing managers to create a strong community among current and prospective residents. Marketing managers can use Facebook groups to share events happening at certain properties or in the local area. Facebook groups are also a great platform for residents to share their own content, which can be reviewed and approved by the marketing manager prior to being posted. Prospective residents who are unsure if they want to move forward with a property may be more inclined to do so after joining the Facebook group and learning more about community events and engaging with other residents in the group.
In addition to Facebook groups, marketing managers can also create business pages that showcase the property’s amenities, room sizes, and other attributes. In regards to amenities, younger residents (also known as the “social media generation”), tend to favor high-tech amenities such as high-speed Wi-Fi, keyless entry, Wi-Fi operated fitness equipment, USB charging ports, and digital property management processes, so highlighting those features when applicable can be particularly effective.
Marketing managers can also use a business page to post resident features interviewing exemplary residents. For example, if a resident has lived in your building for over 10 years, you can interview that tenant and write an interesting piece about their favorite aspects of the property. Business pages are also a great place to post photos and information about community events for current and prospective residents.
Live video has been a game-changer in the world of social media. Marketing managers can use Facebook Live to do property tours, feature a resident’s beautifully decorated home, or showcase a building’s impressive amenities.
Instagram is a fantastic way for marketing managers to post pictures and videos of properties and amenities. Instagram users like to see more than just pictures of buildings, however; they also like to see images of the neighborhood where properties are located, home design or organization ideas, and other helpful resources. This is also a great place to share stories and features about residents.
In addition to offering a great platform to showcase properties and amenities, Instagram stories also have great engagement tools such as “questions,” “polls,” “registration,” and “countdowns.” Marketing managers can use the “ask me a question” option to engage in conversation with tenants. This is an attractive feature for prospective residents as well, as it creates a more humanistic element to the social media account and shows that the marketing manager is willing to answer residents’ questions in a variety of mediums. The registration and countdown tools can also be used to inform current or prospective residents about upcoming events.
Despite Twitter’s 280-character limit, it is still a powerful platform for connecting and engaging with current and prospective residents. Humorous and informative posts tend to do best on Twitter, particularly in the form of memes and gifs, as seen on popular Twitter accounts such as Netflix, Chipotle, and GEICO.
Marketing managers can engage with current and prospective residents by following and retweeting residents’ content and hosting Q&A sessions where they respond to questions in the comments.
While previously known as a career placement tool, LinkedIn now functions as a medium for reading the news, learning more about different companies, and connecting with colleagues, friends, and family members. LinkedIn is unique in that it displays user engagement in the newsfeed, whereas other platforms do not.
For example, if someone “likes” or “applauds” another LinkedIn user’s post, that engagement will appear in the newsfeed. This unique feature helps LinkedIn users see content beyond just their personal network. Knowing that, in addition to posting content related to their residents, properties, and community events, marketing managers should also make a genuine effort to engage with their residents’ content to help other residents connect with one another.
According to Hubspot, marketers who prioritize blogging are 13 times more likely to see a positive return on investment. In addition to being one of the most effective ways to boost SEO, blogging also provides an excellent platform to inform and educate current and prospective residents on information about buildings, neighborhoods, amenities, events, and more. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram are effective platforms to share blog posts to a broader audience.
Marketing managers can engage with current and prospective residents by asking what they would like to learn about via Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or LinkedIn and then write articles based on users’ feedback. The blogging platform should also have a comments section where current and prospective residents can ask questions.
In addition to posting content on social media, it is imperative that marketing managers engage with residents and answer questions, comments, and concerns in a quick, kind, and respectful manner. Users are far more likely to engage with content when they know a “real person” is on the other side of a computer. It is also always best for marketing managers to make social media posts informative and educational, as opposed to overly sales-driven.
Draper and Kramer’s property managers are dedicated to fostering an active community via social media by sharing community events, updates, news, photos, and videos that are useful and inspiring to current and prospective residents. To learn more about Draper and Kramer’s community-oriented luxury properties, visit draperandkramer.com.