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What Are You Handing Out to Hot Prospects?

What Are You Handing Out to Hot Prospects?

When was the last time you took a good look at what you were giving out to prospects that just toured your community?

Is it just an application? A community folder with the application inside? A brochure?

Why not switch to a custom branded box that wows your prospect. Then fill the box with your necessary information plus a few extra goodies.

You could call it your “New Lease Toolkit.” What would you put inside? Here are a few ideas:

•    Floor Plan Sheets, Brochures, Application

•    Local Area Discounts, Movie Tickets

•    Tape Measure, Candles

•    Scratch Off Lottery Tickets

•    Candy

Here's a recent box we created using Packlane.com.

Packlane lets you customize every square inch of the box - inside and out. The cost is minimal and you can order as many or as few as you need.

Don't forget -  Your  overall goal is to give your hot prospects a leave-behind that holds their attention. If your box is good enough, you may even benefit from a prospect opening the box on video and then sharing it on social media.

Consider this - on Instagram you’ll find over 475,000 posts tagged #unboxing. And since 2010, YouTube videos with “unboxing” in their title have increased 871%.

What would you rather have - a fun box full of goodies or a community folder with information?



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"Think About All The Money You Will Be Saving On A Gym Membership!"

I bet most of us in the industry have used that line when discussing their fitness center, so it cracked me up hearing that same line from a real estate agent pitching a $67 MILLION dollar town home in Manhattan.  

Recent comment in this post
Guest — Annmarie Cristiani
I changed that line to, "Our fitness center is a great supplement to whatever membership you may have -or a great place to start a... Read More
Tuesday, 19 March 2019 15:47
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1 Comment

20 for '20 - A New Perspective on Multifamily Leadership

This week we released our much-anticipated white paper, 20 for '20: 20 Conversations with Senior Executives About the Outlook for 2020 and Beyond. For those of you who hadn’t heard about it, we interviewed 20 operations and technology executives at the end of 2018 to get their perspectives on the state of the industry and their own priorities. We felt that by contrasting our 20 interviewees' current priorities with priorities for the next few years, we could gain and share insight into the outlook to 2020 and beyond. We’ll be discussing some of the findings in more detail on this blog over the coming weeks. But today, aside from making sure you know it’s now available for download, I thought I would share what motivated us to put in the many hours of research and to invest in writing this white paper. Not another opinion piece Simply put, we wanted to write something that wasn’t just an opinion. So we worked to find a structured way to collect expert input and develop a neutral, sober perspective on where the industry is heading.  We wanted to identify and understand broad themes and trends, rather than just articulate a viewpoint to go with all the others. To this end, we structured our interviews around a combination of quantitative statistics and qualitative discussion.  While this white paper was not primarily designed as a piece of quantitative research, we feel that by comparing 20 sets of responses to the same questions, we can draw some inference from the answers. ......
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Email Marketing Best Practices for New Construction Lease Ups

Email Marketing Best Practices for New Construction Lease Ups
If you have a new construction project, email marketing needs to be part of your overall lease up plan.  Before I get into our email marketing best practices, there are two things you need to have ready first:  #1 - You want construction banners posted around the development directing people to a website.  #2 - The actual website that you'll setup needs to be a landing page (just one page) with the goal of building an interest list. On this interest list website, prospective residents can enter their contact information to stay in the loop as your new apartment community is developed. This will help you build a solid list of good prospects. The best way to stay top of mind with hot prospects is through email marketing. Here are 5 best practices: #1 - How often should I email?  Send one to two emails monthly. When prospects opt-in for more information on your website, they should receive a welcome email immediately. This first email is probably the most important, as it is your first contact with your prospects and sets the tone for their entire experience with your community. Confirm you received their information, thank them, welcome them, and let them know what to expect next.  Spend extra time making sure you're creating the right experience with your words. Then set this email up as an autoresponder, so they automatically receive it a few minutes after leaving their information. #2 - What should I say in my emails?  Include updates on construction, making prospects feel......
Recent Comments
Brent Williams
Josh, are QR codes still relevant to put on banners?
Wednesday, 06 March 2019 11:33
Josh Grillo
Hi Brent, Thanks for the comment. For large construction banners definitely not. I view these type of banners like billboards. I... Read More
Thursday, 07 March 2019 10:40
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“Mom, mom, mom, mom, mom, mom.” “Honey, I’m trying to talk to the leasing consultant!”

  Some kids are quiet, sweet, and completely respectful when their parents are trying to talk with someone.  This does not describe my kids.  My kids are incredibly talkative and energetic, and when they were younger, having an adult conversation while they were around was an exercise in extreme patience.  As a leasing consultant, if one of these families walks through the door, the key to that lease very well may depend on your ability to provide a bit of quiet to allow a normal conversation with the parents! From a kid’s perspective, apartment hunting has got to be painfully boring.  They might be interested as you walk by the pool or playground, but a discussion about the family’s needs in an apartment, especially when they have had the same discussion five other times that day, is going to drive those kids bonkers.  And when they flip out, then you have lost the parent’s attention, as well as the sale.  So the key is to distract, distract, distract!    My initial inspiration for this blog was actually from my sister-in-law, who is a teacher and shared her reading nook in her classroom: My reaction was immediate – wouldn’t something like this be great for a community leasing office that had a high percentage of families with kids?  As a parent, this is an incredible lifeline giving me a few minutes a peace and quiet so I could have a conversation with the leasing consultant about what we were looking for.  Stress goes down......
Recent Comments
Guest — Anne Sadovsky
Brent, in the past I had small tables and chairs, crayons and coloring books. In today's world, the Legos sound great. I thought... Read More
Monday, 04 March 2019 11:57
Guest — Debi gagermeier
IHA ve done that I my office on a small level. I have a box full of toys that kids can play with, so when the adults are trying to... Read More
Tuesday, 12 March 2019 08:35
Guest — Sheila Stanko
The reader's nook is a fantastic idea. Perhaps partnering up with the local school or day care for a couple reading hours will fr... Read More
Tuesday, 12 March 2019 08:35
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Why Grouping Floor Plans Is Like Selling Shoes

Last week we were talking about the experience of leasing up big projects, and it reminded me of something that I’ve advised companies against doing for years.  It’s to do with the setup of pricing and revenue management systems (RMS) – a set of tasks that do not always receive the attention that they should. When companies set up new properties on an RMS, one of the most frequent missteps, even for experienced revenue management departments, is the execution of floor plan groupings.  It’s an essential set-up step, as it determines the level at which the system will forecast and make pricing recommendations. Here’s the problem that I’ve seen again and again over the years: companies tend to form the groups that make the revenue management system easier to manage, rather than the ones that will yield the best results.  There is some logic to this approach: revenue management systems generate statistics, and segments with large unit counts usually yield more reliable statistics and hence results. However, when 5, 10, or even 15 different floor plans are lumped together in 1x1's or 2x2's and so on, it becomes hard to interpret the pricing recommendations.  The risk is that when managers are unable to make sense of the recommendations, they look for quick ways to affect changes to unit pricing, with mismanagement of amenity pricing a common and potentially damaging consequence. Why bottom-up beats top-down Through years of experience, I’ve found that the key to good unit type segmentation is to build from the bottom rather t......
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Leasing Up in London - Familiar Challenges in a New Multifamily Market

  Last week I was in London – the city where I grew up and spent most of my formative years. I have never used trips home to view multifamily real estate, but this time was different. A couple of weeks ago at NMHC Annual, I attended the session that provided an overview of London’s Wembley Park project. With that presentation still fresh in my mind, I couldn’t leave my home town without taking a tour of the development. For those unfamiliar with the project or its locale, Wembley is home to England’s national soccer stadium. It is familiar to most people as a concert venue, the home of the annual FA Cup final, and the iconic site where England won the World Cup (in 1966). Although it is not far from central London, all paths lead to the imposing stadium that dominates the whole area. Crowds arrive for the game or concert and then leave – or at least that’s the way things used to work. Today a revolution is underway that will change that forever. Inventing a Neighborhood and an Industry The Wembley Park project is exciting for a number of reasons. First of all, it includes 7,000 units of high-end, high-rise residential real estate. Having grown up in London that’s a jaw-dropping idea. Stadium aside, Wembley was an unlovely suburb in which relatively few denizens of London aspired to live. You’d pass it on the North Circular (the Northern half of London’s “inner loop”) but would seldom linger. That looks set to change. A vibr......
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7 Crucial Questions to Address Prior to Implementing Self Tours

7 Crucial Questions to Address Prior to Implementing Self Tours
The shiny new object of our industry in 2019 is “self-guided tours,” allowing prospects to visit communities and tour without a team member. While allowing someone to tour themselves isn’t new, and was how less professional buildings conducted operations even as recent as a decade ago, this time it’s here to stay.   With the evolution of technology, the self-guided tour experience can now be purposeful, intentional and fabulous. Before jumping in the self-tour deep end, however, there are crucial questions to address. Of course, there will be lessons learned and pivots to perfect this approach, but thinking ahead will create a better experience and save headaches down the road. Remember when Facebook was a new shiny object and properties started creating pages with fake birthdays as if the property was a person? Then the page sat stagnant because there wasn’t a plan on how to implement and manage them.  Knowing the objective is half the battle.   As you determine whether you want to implement self-guided tours as an option for your prospects, think through your objective, your brand and the experience you want prospects to have. Consider what industries and businesses have effective self-service business models and what you like about their models from your local grocery store to Silver Car.  Then, address these questions: Will prospects have a choice or will self-guided tours be the only way to see a home? Will prospects be able to tour outside of the office hours? How will you verify people who will be walking t......
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From Imagination to Implementation – MICA in Review

MICA II 2019 (8 of 53)As long-standing supporters of the annual AIM conference in Southern California, we had been looking forward to the launch of its south-eastern sister conference – MICA (Multifamily Innovation Conference Atlanta) – which took place last week. The inaugural MICA event promised a showcase for innovation in one of the nation’s multifamily industry hotbeds, and it didn’t disappoint. An impressive crowd experienced a program that ranged from the creative, cutting edge of marketing to the nuts and bolts of implementing the innovations that residents are increasingly expecting of multifamily providers.  First, the “Wow Factor”  Day One featured – amongst other things - Frederik Eklund, uber-successful New York residential real estate broker and the star of Million Dollar Listing. Besides bringing some much-appreciated stardust to this new meeting, Frederik shared insights into brand-building in the New York luxury real estate market. The themes are familiar: beyond location, location, location, high-end buildings are increasingly using hospitality-like services and experiences to attract buyers. The discussion on stage was punctuated by some quite beautiful examples of websites for multifamily properties. The content reminded us of the ways that immersive, persona-based branding is helping to establish the lifestyle experiences that attract today’s discerning residents. Interestingly, the discussion turned at one point to self-show, and its appeal relative to current leasing experiences. A show of hands revealed that only one company represented in the audience was currently inviting prospects to conduct an unaccompanied tour. Those following this area of multifamily technology will be unsurprised to learn that it was a single-family housing company.......
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Ten Questions You Should be Asking Yourself about Leasing

iStock-949178104Recently it's been my privilege to interview 20 senior multifamily executives to get their viewpoints and understand their priorities for the next few years. (The interviews were part of our research for a new white paper that we'll be publishing soon - you can pre-register for your copy here.) Through the interviews, one thing was crystal clear: most companies see sales as a top training priority for 2019. Readers of this blog will not be surprised by this finding - we have long been calling for a revolution in multifamily sales. Multifamily leaders seem to agree, and there are good reasons for that: after a decade of growth in multifamily, the sales muscles have perhaps not received the most rigorous of workouts lately. It makes sense to strengthen them before markets start to soften - whenever that is. While the motivation to change and upgrade sales is clear, the question remains: what is it that we should be changing? Through the experience of working with companies to help boost their sales performance, we’ve found ten questions that will help you understand what your opportunities are. Ask yourself these ten questions about your organization: 1. Is your leasing process driving higher occupancies and rents?Of course, it is - we train our leasing associates to close as many leases as possible, right? However, think of the sales conversation at your property: do many of your prospects become residents because of the leasing process? You can only say yes to this question if you think your agents ar......
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