December 19, 2018

Competition to Attract Renters at All-Time High. How Do You Generate More Leads?

We have experienced unprecedented economic expansion over the last few years, and one of the most noteworthy things is that it still shows no sign of running out of gas. A healthy job market nationwide, along with depressed home ownership rates, among other factors, should propel the multifamily market for the next 18 months. And according to JLL’s research, we expect multifamily deliveries to hit more than 350,000 units nationwide by the end of 2018, plus another 300,000 units are anticipated to come online in 2019.

Much of the demand for apartments is fueled by Millennials and empty nesters alike in search of walkable living, close proximity to central business districts, and a monthly rent that is more affordable than the costs and headaches associated with home ownership. To underscore the continued demand for apartment units, Millennial homeownership stands 8.4 percentage points lower compared with Gen X in their 20s. What this means is, where we saw past generations migrating out of the cities and into the suburbs to start families, Millennials are displaying a higher propensity to remain in rental options that provide the walkable, urban-like lifestyle that has become so popular within the cohort.

So, what does this mean for multifamily owners and property managers? With an ever-increasing amount of apartment options and a growing number of the population inclined to rent, there is a lot of competition to attract and retain renters.

One way developers are competing for renters’ lease agreements is through design and amenities. We’ve learned over the years that young renters want highly designed spaces, so much that developers have taken aesthetics and amenities into consideration in nearly every build nationwide. But the question still remains, once you’ve peaked renters’ interest with a great location and appealing design, how do you convert them among tough competition in the marketplace?

There’s a solution for that: text message marketing. If there is only one other thing we know about Millennials, it’s that their phones are not far from reach. But they aren’t the only ones; in today’s world, 77 percent of U.S. adults have smartphones and have become increasingly dependent upon their phones. It is no wonder that studies show text messages have a 98 percent read rate, compared to email’s 22 percent open rate. To further solidify texting’s impact on users, most texts (approx. 90 percent) are read within 3 minutes of delivery. Can you think of a more meaningful and effective way to communicate with people? We can’t.

Many apartment property managers continue promoting their communities with traditional forms of marketing, such as email, web and even print advertising. Yet, marketing via text messaging is proving to be the form of communication that makes the most sense.

That is the why we created a platform that provides custom SMS/MMS solutions for property managers to not only generate high-quality leads, but to convert interested parties into signed renters. With our Text-4-Info solution, property managers can display a keyword on a building, website, or any type of signage to allow potential renters the ability to text in and receive more information. Using automated response technology, leads can have information delivered instantly in the form of links, photos, videos or simple text. Our Live Chat solution takes it a step further to place a leasing associate at the other end of the text conversation to communicate in real time with a potential renter about tours, pricing, availabilities and more.

These solutions have been used by some of the largest apartment owners in the nation. One such example yielded more than 2,000 qualified potential renter leads in less than 6 months – which amounted to nearly $24 million in possible new annual leases. Another program yielded more than 230 lease renewals in a 30-day period.

Brands, businesses and apartment owners are constantly looking for new digital ways to connect with current and potential tenants. We know that apartment property managers have a tough job to get people in the door and to retain renters in this highly competitive multifamily market. Let us help you innovate: no more notes in mailboxes or tacked to doors. No more unchecked voicemails. No more emails residents won’t read. Contact us today to learn how we can help you break out above the competition, engage prospective renters and retain tenants.