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Get with the Program... Lifecycle Programming, that is. :CLM Series

  What is Lifecycle Programming? Lifecycle Programming is a way to automate customer lifecycle marketing for Multifamily.It combines customer lifecycle marketing efforts from employees and the digital workforce to build stronger customer relationships. Let’s dive deeper.   How Does it Work? Using a series of plays, Lifecycle Programming provides targeted content to customers. The customer’s stage in the lifecycle determines the play used. Each play is a collection of email topics to send to customers in a particular stage of the lifecycle. A play contains a mix of automated drips, triggered alerts and eBlasts.All together, these emails work to move customers from one stage to the next.  Plus, they are faster and easier than traditional email marketing campaigns! Automation is the key to making Customer Lifecycle Marketing for Multifamily work. Each of the email types used in a play involves some degree of automation. Let’s learn a little more.   Triggered Alert Triggered alerts have the highest level of automation. These emails rely on ambient intelligence to sense and respond to an event. Trigger events can be a result of a property’s action or prospect’s action. Property triggers result from property management company actions. These can vary from price changes to policy changes. Prospect triggers are a result of actions taken by the prospect. Events like submitting an application or clicking through an email are prospect triggers. Take a look at the chart below. It makes it easy to see how little agent effort is required. For example, a prospect may only click through emails featuring one bedroom apartments. The system uses that information to infer the......
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Hey Property Managers — Branding isn’t just for Apple and Google

BrandingResidentLoyalty Most companies think branding is for giants like Apple and Google. After all, these tech monsters yield a combined $270 billion in value from their efforts. All the result of a well-coordinated branding effort that includes frequently focused messaging and a consistent visual presence at every touch point.However, just because you’re a smaller property management company, don’t think for a moment that branding isn’t just as important for you.Branding maintains consistency with messaging, emails, and other regularly used outreach tools that over time leaves with the consumer a lasting impression of the quality of your company. Done properly, branding can also influence the reactions and thoughts prospective residents, current residents and first-timers have when they interact with your property. First impressions last a lifetime - and with so many other choices out there for your potential residents, it's important that you're building trust and brand loyalty every step of the way - whether they're still a potential lead or an active member of your community.Think about it—a potential resident is evaluating whether or not they want to live at your property (or continue living at your property.) If they walk away feeling like your company is “cheap”, lackluster and disorganized, they’re going to pass you over and set their sights on somewhere else. Having a strong and consistent internet presence is more important than ever - resident communities have become a world full of choices. Properties are a dime a dozen in the mind of the resident, so it’s your job to present y......
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All About Convenience: 5 Value Adds for More Renewals

All About Convenience: 5 Value Adds for More Renewals
I once read a social media post where a customer wrote a personal thank you to a popular grocery store.  In his post, he explained that he attempted to enter the store, not realizing it had closed ten minutes prior.  He found the entrance locked, however a manager opened the door and asked how she could help him.  The customer explained he just needed to get one item and didn’t know the store had closed.  As he turned to walk back to his car, the manager invited him into the store and told him to take his time getting the item he needed.  The man hurriedly grabbed the item and headed to the checkout.   At the checkout, he was greeted cheerfully by a cashier who proceeded to ask if the customer needed anything more than just that one item.  The man told her that he didn’t want to hold them up and would come back the next day.  The cashier smiled and responded, “You should get it now.  That’s what we’re here for”.  The customer told her that his one item was enough, paid for his purchase, thanked the cashier and left the store. As he sat in the parking lot, he felt compelled to write about his positive experience.  Not only had he arrived ten minutes after the store had closed, but he was allowed to enter the store and make his purchase.  He also was given the opportunity to continue shopping without feeling rushed by employees who were ready to go home ......
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The Cost of Untrained Leasing Consultants

The Cost of Untrained Leasing Consultants
Most of us have published an ad looking for “experienced leasing consultants” and received an array of resumes that may have included a rookie or two. Sometimes, we try our luck with first-timers; maybe because something sparked our eye, or maybe we’re just desperately in need of new talent. Sometimes, we find people with experience, and sometimes an impressionable candidate finds their way onto the top of the pile, regardless of their experience in multifamily. I’ve had the pleasure of training diamonds-in-the-rough a few times, but more often than not, due to time constraints and manager obligations, consultants are thrown into the fire, head first, and told to take an online leasing class or wait until a company trainer comes in. So smile, answer the phone, and lease. The number of leasing consultants that are on the front line that lack proper training is surprising. This is often because companies either don’t accurately assess the legal and financial ramifications of untrained staff, or they have not allocated the time or resources necessary. I preach an old saying that multifamily vets know all too well, “It costs money to make the phone ring.” And how much does it cost? Usually quite a bit. Even with a minimal marketing budget, you’re ideally still allocating funds for “curb appeal” i.e. flags, banners, signage. With larger budgets, allocation for ILS services for lead generation, SEO, answering services, chat bot, websites, and tracking systems are standard. Not to mention the presence of any outreach marketing, resident and employee events......
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CLM: Multifamily's Next Big Thing.

Multifamily Customer LifecycleWhat is Customer Lifecycle Marketing? Everyone knows in business the customer comes first. Customer Lifecycle Marketing is founded on this principle. The goal of Customer Lifecycle Marketing is to send content to leads based on their stage in the customer lifecycle. What is exciting for a prospect may not matter to a dead lead and vice versa. So why would you send them the same content? Plus, customers who received emails specific to their stage in the customer lifecycle have a 72% higher conversion rate. Did we mention? Marketers who use segmented email marketing campaigns experience a 760% increase in revenue! Let’s see what this looks like for Multifamily. Still confused about CLM? Download the Customer Lifecycle Marketing Infographic.   How Does it Work? Every potential Multifamily customer falls into one of the following zones: Prospect Zone Resident Zone Dormant Zone So let’s take a look at the normal lifecycle for a Multifamily customer.   The idea is to get every lead into the Resident Zone. A.K.A.the zone where you are making money. Obviously having full occupancy forever is a fantasy, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t form your strategy with that goal in mind. Norman Vincent Peale said it best, “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.” That’s what we are doing with Lifecycle Programming.   How to Put it into Play We have developed ready-made ‘plays’ to make the transition from each stage to the next as easy as possible. And maximize the number of customers in the Resident Zone!     By engaging with each customer at every step of th......
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Can’t Keep Up With Your Tenants’ Maintenance Requests? Here Are 3 Ways To Fix This

Dealing with tenants’ maintenance requests is one of the biggest issues landlords face, especially with so much (rental) competition around. Tenants know that they can get the same or better service for their buck virtually wherever they turn. It is giving them a confidence boost to demand their landlord’s active involvement in their apartment upkeep, repairs, and all other pending issues, no matter how trivial. Naturally, every landlord’s goal is to keep the tenant’s happy; on that note, we’re listing a few ways that can help you get on top of your tenants’ demands and find the best solutions for both insignificant and significant requests. Have a Plan Whether you are dealing with your rental property yourself or through a property management company, the best way to handle your tenants’ requests is to have a plan for maintenance requests. That way you’ll respond promptly as requests come through, and you’ll know what do. Outline how the tenant should notify you of any problems Chart your response timeframe Keep a list of local contractors, such as plumbers, electricians, and general contractors to be ready should something urgent happens   Know the Law Running your property rental business needs to be done within the landlord/tenant law for you to execute your rights as a landlord. Since this law considerably varies from state to state, make sure you’re within the right one to avoid any potential problems. Also, it’s crucial you stay within both federal and state legislation. Most states have clear guidelines on how soon you’re required to res......
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Rethink renter communication in today’s hyper-connected world

Electronic communication is dominating our waking hours.   According to Adobe Campaign’s third annual consumer email survey, people spend 5.4 hours every weekday checking email. Add that to the nearly two hours per day consumers spend on social networks, and that’s nearly seven-and-a-half of our 16 waking hours.   Getting consumer attention in this saturated, hyper-connected consumer environment isn’t easy. So, how can you make your messages stand out?   Data-driven personalized interactions Prospective renters are tired of having to set the same preferences and fill out the same forms over and over again in order to shop for their next home. They want to complete these tasks once and for the property managers to provide some degree of personalized interaction based on those preferences.   This expectation will be even more important when Generation Z, the next big multifamily market, reaches renting age. According to a WP Engine study, 50 percent of Gen Z consumers said they would stop visiting websites that don’t anticipate what they need, like or want.   Property managers need to utilize technology that remembers a person’s browsing history, automatically redirects a prospect to the floor plan they spent the most time on, and auto-fills their contact form or online leasing form.   Leverage advancements in social media marketing The industry has been talking about the role of social media since Facebook was a private company, which in tech time was a hundred years ago. Yet most multifamily owner/operators still aren’t leveraging social media to advance thei......
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Four Reasons Why Property Managers Must Embrace Text and Email

Text and Email      With 88 percent of residents preferring to communicate via email and 90 percent of text messages being read within 3 minutes of delivery, property managers can no longer ignore the fact that the mainstream expectations on how a resident prefers to communicate has changed. It makes sense - texting friends and family is second-nature, it’s only natural that they now prefer to communicate with their property managers in the same immediate and convenient channel. It's also minimally time invasive and gives your residents the opportunity to stay connected no matter where they are or what they're up to.Still not convinced? Here are four reasons you should seriously consider embracing text and email as a day-to-day way to communicate with your residents:Reason 1: Bye-bye Baby Boomers, hello Millennials We’re all witnessing a paradigm shift away from baby boomers and over to the future of business growth in millennials, specifically in the housing category. According to Pew Research, millennials have surpassed baby boomers as the largest living generation and are driving up the rental market every month. To meet this shift, property managers need to embrace the communication channels that this new generation has grown up with. More importantly, they must provide experiences that allow everything to be resolved on a smartphone without them having to pick up and call. This new-age group is a large percentage of the renters that will be shopping and comparing your community, and ultimately determining whether or not they want to sign or renew a lea......
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"Does your company require technicians to do HVAC work outside once it is dark out?"

Below is a video of some of my thoughts on "Does your company require technicians to do HVAC work outside once it is dark out?"

What is expected where you work?  

 

 

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To buy technology or to build technology? The cost is the true question.

To buy technology or to build technology? The cost is the true question.
There are certain technologies that apartment operators simply shouldn’t build on their own – like property management and revenue management systems, business intelligence platforms and even customer relationship management programs. With the growing demand for resident-facing technology from renters, many apartment operators are left with this question: should we build the tech ourselves, or should we buy it from a proven supplier? There’s a reason you wouldn’t ask a fisherman to cut your hair – you end up paying for it in the long run, and the same can be true when trying to build a technology someone else has already developed. Translation: an apartment operator serves itself and its residents best when it hires a company that specializes in the design and implementation of new technologies to do the work. The True Costs of Building a Technology YourselfIn theory, it may make sense to tackle building a new technology in-house – I mean, you may already have an IT team. But in reality, building the technology that will deliver the results and success you are looking for can be costly, both in terms of actual expenses and the extent to which an operator has to draw valuable resources away from its core mission. Let’s take building a custom, white-label mobile app for an apartment community as an example. White-labeled apps are those used by residents to communicate with management, pay rent online, make service requests, for example. They are created with both the resident experience and onsite process top-of-mind and are different......
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