Services To Look For From Your New Start Real Estate Marketing Partner

Services To Look For From Your New Start Real Estate Marketing Partner

Setting a new start community up for success is among the most complex projects you can undertake as a real estate developer or property manager. From branding and positioning to floor plan creation and event planning, the sheer number of marketing projects necessary to attract new residents and turn great construction into a successful community can quickly become overwhelming. That complexity is multiplied when you take into account the various touch points you’ll need along the way to translate a central brand identity across every digital and print asset, from websites to brochures to signage.

That’s why new start developers and asset managers often turn to full-service marketing agencies to help them navigate all the moving parts. A full-service agency is a marketing partner that covers the full array of digital, print, and strategic services that feed into a successful marketing plan for you property. Because new start developments are working from scratch to stand out among the competition and reach an untapped audience, working with a full-service partner is key. Spreading your marketing needs across multiple partners and vendors can compromise your strategic vision and dilute your brand identity, leading to less effective real estate marketing.

So what services should you look for in a real estate marketing partner? For new starts, here are the key services your marketing partner should be able to cover.

Research & Discovery

Any good real estate marketing plan begins with research and discovery. Skipping this step can be tempting if you are already familiar with your market (especially if you live locally yourself), but that’s never a good idea. Every new start enters a unique market defined by its precise location, existing competition, and ever-changing audience demographics and interests. That’s why we always recommend working with a marketing partner that will do their own research and discovery before launching into the branding process.

Although savvy developers usually conduct their own internal market research in order to design communities that will meet market demand, a marketing partner will cover additional nuances that help you activate a specific target audience and ensure your vision comes through loud and clear. While a developer might pay attention to rental rates, amenities, floor plan availability, and housing density in the area, a marketing partner might pay extra attention to competing brands, audience demographics, local history and culture, and other details that complete the picture of how your community can connect with new residents.

Naming & Branding

Without a cohesive naming and branding strategy, all marketing collateral suffers. You need a brand identity that is unique and recognizable so that potential renters have something to latch onto when comparing you to a sea of competitors. After all, details like amenities and floor plans matter when selecting a home, but what matters even more is how you tell the story of those advantages so that your audience takes the time to engage and learn more.

brand guidelines document for apartment brand

Telling this story begins with a suite of branding decisions that can be consistently applied across all collateral in order to amplify brand recognition and brand loyalty. That means naming, logo design, colors and patterns, typography, voice guidelines, and lifestyle imagery guidelines should all be established with your marketing partner, then codified into a comprehensive brand guidelines document so that future collateral builds upon the central brand identity.

Web Design & Development

In many cases, a landing page or full website is the first place your brand will come to life and get the chance to connect with your audience. Working with the same marketing partner on web design and development that you worked with for research, naming, and branding helps ensure that this crucial milestone fully realizes the brand identity you worked so hard to create. Few things can compromise an otherwise solid marketing plan more easily than a poorly executed website that is out of step with your larger marketing strategy.

real estate website design

Along the way, it’s also essential that your web designers and developers understand UX and SEO best practices so that your website isn’t just pretty and on-brand, but also pleasurable to use and easy to find so that your audience of potential renters can actually connect and take action. Make sure your marketing partner is well-versed in UX and SEO so that your websites and landing pages continue to pull their weight long after they’ve been launched. In fact, we recommend working with a real estate marketing partner that offers long-term hosting, management, optimizations, and periodic design refreshes on your site so that as trends change, you can stay ahead of the curve.

Print & Digital Asset Creation

In addition to website design and development, there is a wide array of digital and print assets that contribute to your brand efficacy and help your audience make their housing decision. Included in this category are assets like floor plans and site plans, virtual tours, photography and videography, brochures, flyers, business cards, and letterhead. Each of these separate touch points is a chance to amplify your brand identity and engage your audience. If executed poorly, they can have the opposite effect—diluting your brand identity and failing to connect with potential renters.

apartment brochure design

Once again, consistency is key when it comes to asset creation. Every asset should be an extension of your larger branding and marketing strategy in order to maximize ROI. Details like these can often go unnoticed unless they clash with your brand or otherwise fail to meet expectations, so they can sometimes become an afterthought for developers and property managers. A great marketing partner knows how important it is to get these details right so that everything fits seamlessly together.

Environmental Graphics

The real estate marketing funnel is increasingly digital, but environmental graphics still play a key roll in raising awareness, driving foot traffic, and creating great tour experiences. From construction banners and billboard graphics to temporary lease space design decked out with floor plan graphics, rendering graphics, and targeted messaging that speaks to your unique differentiators, your marketing partner should be able to help with it all. Meanwhile, permanent signage should also be carefully crafted to amplify your brand identity so that you’re never at risk of blending in among your local competitors.

student apartment leasing office design

Digital Marketing

As you work hard to complete your new development project, your digital marketing should be working just as hard to raise brand awareness, generate leads, and nurture those leads so that your efforts pay off with a swift lease-up. When it comes to digital marketing, you’ll benefit from having the same partner involved in your ad campaigns and email tactics that was present for the research & discovery, branding, and design projects along the way. This digital marketing partner is then better equipped to target your unique audience with the right message at the right time in the right place.

Promo & Swag

As you prepare for open houses, housing fairs, grand opening events, and move-ins, branded promotional items can go a long way in keeping your new community top of mind with prospects and delivering a great move-in experience that turns residents into brand advocates. Welcome kits, giveaway items, and event promo should be more than an afterthought; the right item outfitted with a unique design can be the difference between a memorable brand experience and a throwaway object that people quickly forget about.

promotional item for real estate brand

If you’re still looking for a new start marketing partner who covers all these bases from discovery to promo, we’d love to chat! Threshold covers all this and more in order to deliver cohesive marketing strategies that build on one another to accelerate lease-ups and drive high ROI. Keep us in mind for your next new start project or use our chatbot, Trent, to schedule a no-strings consultation to learn more about what we do.

How The Metaverse Could Change Real Estate Marketing

How The Metaverse Could Change Real Estate Marketing

image of the author, ZacWritten by Zac Segula, Digital Success Manager

Whether we are talking cryptocurrency, virtual reality (VR), non-fungible tokens (NFTS), or Web 3.0, they all center around a progressive switch from physical to digital. As many things like art, events, and currency shift to become more digital, it seems inevitable that the digital realm will continue to expand into more and more places where we spend our time. That’s exactly what the Metaverse intends to accomplish.

If you are unfamiliar with the term, The Metaverse is an immersive, computer and user-generated digital environment consisting of virtual avatars that represent actual people and combines aspects of augmented and virtual reality. If this still doesn’t make sense, watch the trailer for Steven Spielberg’s 2018 film Ready Player One. The Metaverse will combine video games, technology, and social media in one place.

person using VR headset in their home office

Is The Metaverse a Fad or the Future?

Just as print advertising was king in the ’90s and slowly began to lose ground to the digital ads and social media marketing we see today, we are at the beginning of a similar transformation to marketing in The Metaverse. Facebook, which saw over 31 billion dollars in ad spend in 2020, announced in October 2021 that they were rebranding their company name to Meta. This shift in name reflects the company’s new focus on The Metaverse. If Facebook is shifting its billion-dollar advertising business to The Metaverse, it’s fair to say that many savvy real estate marketers will follow suit.

What Will Be Different?

Did you know that during a global pandemic, a musical concert drew an attendance of 12 million viewers? Maybe you didn’t, but your kids did. That is because the show was performed by musical artist Travis Scott in a digital arena in Fortnight, one of today’s most popular video games in which users create avatars and compete in a large-scale battle royale. Fortnight can be considered almost a beta version of what The Metaverse is becoming and how companies will use it creatively to connect millions of people in a digital world.

As the way we reach users changes, so will our metrics for real estate marketing success. Conversions will pivot to be more inclusive of virtual actions. Ads will become more immersive and likely call upon marketers to incorporate all five senses. Tracking a user’s phone behavior will no longer be as valuable as that user’s avatar movement. Moreover, if The Metaverse is built on a decentralized platform, advertisers’ restrictions could likely disappear.

Since real estate digital marketers will go where they can get the most traffic, as The Metaverse evolves, so will our marketing strategy.

person sitting on floor playing an instrument and using a VR headset

What Marketing In the Metaverse Might Look Like

As we begin attending more digital events and living within a completely digital universe, we won’t be spending time on our phones so much as in our phones. As that evolution continues, so will the need to adapt our real estate digital marketing campaigns. Instead of going to YouTube on their computer, users might put on their virtual reality headsets and walk their avatar to a YouTube Movie theatre. The way we create real estate digital ads will be completely different because they will be consumed in a different medium. Facebook banners will be replaced by digital billboards at
a busy intersection across from a Van’s Virtual Skatepark. Pictures of floor plans and clickable Matterport videos of apartments will likely become obsolete. Instead, the Metaverse will allow prospects to virtually walk around that apartment before signing a PDF and emailing it in. The buyers’ journey will be completely different, thus so will a real estate marketer’s touchpoints.

So ultimately, the question isn’t, “will The Metaverse change digital marketing?” it’s “how will it change digital marketing and how can we keep up as real estate marketers?” It is hard to fully grasp the changes likely to come from The Metaverse. After all, we didn’t know having a GPS on our phones would lead to the emergence of Uber until it was already happening. But one thing is sure: those changes aren’t just coming; they are already beginning, right now. With that in mind, the important question becomes, “Are you ready to change your digital marketing for The Metaverse?”

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