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More Tenants, Less Effort: 5 Ways an AI Leasing Assistant Increases Conversions

No longer a far-fetched concept reserved to sci-fi movie plots, artificial intelligence is now an indispensable tool in your prospects’ daily routines. Think about it: Chances are you’ve posed a question or two to your favorite AI assistant today, whether that’s Google, Siri, Alexa, or else. Maybe you needed directions to a meeting, store hours for the nearest pharmacy, or a rundown of your calendar appointments — and you had no time or desire to read through a website, call customer support, or click through a handful of dashboards. You wanted answers in seconds, and AI delivered it.  Likewise, the tenants you’re trying to attract have a serious digital addiction and craving for instant answers. It’s why AI leasing assistants are no-brainers in delivering measurable improvements in conversions, engagement, and revenue.     Below are five ways an AI Leasing Assistant will bring more tenants to your properties: 1. Satisfy consumers’ craving for easy self-service and instant gratification Today’s consumers expect the same ease, immediacy, and anytime/anywhere access they enjoy from online retailers and media platforms. Fail to deliver those experiences and they’ll jump ship to a more responsive website, sinking your profits. Astute multifamily property marketers understand that to remain relevant and profitable, they must compete on the battlefield of user experiences, often measured against the ease and speed of Siri or Google. AI Leasing Assistants make that possible.   Speaking of speed and ease, todays’ consumers also don’t want to talk to a sales rep until they’ve completed some basic research, narrowed thei......
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The Research Is In On Multifamily Lead Conversions

If - like me - you're in the business of demand optimization, you'll know that it's been getting harder and harder to talk about any trend in multifamily without first referencing the ten years of unprecedented growth that the industry has been experiencing.  For as long as anyone can remember, residents have been relatively plentiful. That's great news for operators and investors, but a growth environment can paper over cracks in sales and marketing performance. This inescapable trend was on our minds when we embarked on a new study of lead conversion tactics.  A couple of weeks ago at the AIM Conference, we published a new white paper "Converting Leads to Leases." It is an update to a study that we had run previously in 2014 and 2017.   The results of the first study were instructive, presenting a call-to-action for marketers and operators.  They highlighted the extent to which operators were failing to implement some of the most effective and least expensive tactics for increasing lead conversion.  We updated the data nearly three years later with an identical study, which yielded mostly similar results. The 2019 paper reproduces the methodology from those studies to report back on how the multifamily marketing has progressed in the last five years.  Framing the Research Replicating our 2014 and 2017 research, we generated leads online for 33 different communities through the individual company websites (not through apartment marketing sites).  The 33 properties represented mostly the same group of operators from the 2014 and 2017 stu......
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Five Reasons Manual Rental Payment History Checks Don't Work

The multifamily market didn't exactly crater in 2017. In fact, according to preliminary numbers from Marcus & Millichap, a commercial real estate brokerage and research firm, the average effective apartment rent in the U.S. grew by 4.5 percent last year, to $1,343 per month.  Still, there's no denying that apartment markets in many metros across the country have softened in recent years, and operators must always be on the lookout for a true downturn. What goes up must come down. When the pressure to fill their units ratchets up, operators must make sure their screening process is in first-class shape so they have a crystal-clear view of the risk an applicant poses and they can move quickly to sign suitable prospects. To do this, operators need to eliminate manual rental payment history checks and incorporate payment history that is gathered electronically and automatically. Below are five ways manually checking payment history by phone puts operators at a disadvantage in markets both soft and strong: 1. They're impracticalFor applicants with significant rental history, it can be virtually impossible for leasing agents to reach someone at every community an applicant has previously rented to check payment history.   2. They can be incompleteApplicants may not list all the apartment communities they’ve ever rented from, because they either simply forgot about a community or intentionally left a place out after a bad experience. This leads to operators having an incomplete picture of a prospect's past.  3. They don't workAt a session at the 2017 NMHC O......
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Building a Modern Multifamily Marketing Organization

It’s not as archaic as the dial-up modem, but viewing marketers as those who design flyers and assemble balloon bouquets is a thing of the past. Previously regarded as nothing more than a cost center, multifamily marketing teams are morphing into more strategic roles.   The evolution of technology is largely responsible for this shift, as marketing teams are now expected to drive enough leads to match – or exceed – the budget-growth goals set by operations teams.   As new marketers join multifamily, they’ll need to bring with them a diverse set of technical skills not previously seen in the industry.   An understanding of lead-to-revenue management: A hot lead can be something of an ambiguous concept in multifamily, which has a longer lead-to-conversion timeline than most consumer products and services. Not all renters who are considering your community are ready to lease immediately. Even those who have submitted a notice to vacate their current apartment require nurturing and, in some case, saintly patience.   But continuing to effectively market to these individuals – while striking the balance of not over-pursuing – can lead to a profound difference. For instance, a prospect might be locked in a lease at another community but will consider yours when their lease ends in three months. Those who understand lead management will be much more successful driving lead-to-lease conversion among these renters, as well as increasing their funnel velocity. Modern marketers know that the funnel isn’t a straight shot from the top to the bottom, so co......
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