With the NAA in Las Vegas this year, we thought it would be fitting to embrace the Vegas theme in delivering this latest blog post. Discover how you can understand, relate, and turn your marketing into “Marketing Magic For Millennials”.
Who are Millennials?
Answer: Millennials are categorized as being born between 1980-2000.
Millennials already have an enormous impact on renting, making up over 25% of the rental market (JCHS tabulations of US Census Bureau, Current Population Surveys). This tech savvy, know-it-all group is who you’re going to need to relate to and understand if you are to secure its business and future rent. So what is important to Millennials? From the stats below we can see that online presence is a must. After all – this generation grew up with the internet.
Millennials and Rent
Stats from appfolio.com/blog
The two main desires of Millennials which you should be striving to fulfill are:
- Having your apartment found online
- Having the facility to accept online payments
The vehicle needed to satisfy these needs is an optimally functioning website.
Do you have a Contemporary Website?
The positive impact extends not only to first impressions, but also a usability and user-experience standpoint. If you have no idea what a modern looking website is, check out our 10 Web Design Trends for 2015 to learn about how having a responsive website could put you ahead of the competition. When a site is responsive, the content will fluidly adjust to any device or screen size, without loss of content or user experience. (Say goodbye to the annoyance of having to pinch your phone screen to zoom in and read text).
Having a website that utilizes Responsive Web Design is now the standard of a modern day website. When users visit your website, they expect it to work fluently with mobile devices, load faster, and have an eye-catching design that positively shows your brand. This web design best practice becomes even more necessary with the latest Google Algorithm update affectionately nicknamed Mobilegeddon. If you haven’t heard of it and had no idea about Google Algorithms, not to worry, the bottom line is:
You are either mobile friendly or not. There is no middle ground.
And being mobile-friendly is now going to be a more important factor than before in your website showing up in Google’s mobile search results.
Just remember the look and feel of your website is important, especially with the increasing flow of traffic to your website from various devices.
Don’t underestimate the importance of being mobile ready.
According to ThinkWithGoogle,
4 in 5 Millennials own smartphones.
52% – Say bad mobile experience made them less likely to engage with a company
48% – Say sites that didn’t work well on their smartphones made them feel like those companies didn’t care about their business.
How else do Millennials communicate?
Preferred Digital Communication Methods
When given the choice to state a preference for which digital channel they use often, an overwhelming 92% of millennials use email, closely followed by texting and Facebook (statita.com).
Having a Facebook page might be one of the best (free) investments you can make. Consider that over a billion people use Facebook, so there’s a good chance that your current and potential residents are active on Facebook. Since Millennials are tech-savvy and do just as much research as (if not more than) any other generation before making a decision, then they are probably going to check you out on Facebook.
With an attractive Facebook page, you can be relatable, show off your attractive features, reviews and make enormous strides by making a great first impression.
So what else can you put on Facebook besides crazy cat pictures? Let’s take out the guess work and see how residents typically currently use social media pages.
Residents current Social Media page use
Use your creativity to understand and explore what content could fit into the above categories:
- Video tours of units or past events.
- Posts containing directions and reviews on the best coffee shops only the locals know.
Another social network to consider, although slightly different in its usage, is your Twitter page. The benefits of Twitter are that you can quickly build relationships, address resident issues, or get current event information out to the masses.
Not to be overlooked, YouTube is a potential giant, under-utilized resource. For the YouTube generation, online video is quickly becoming the media of choice. If you want engagement –video is your answer. With almost every current smartphone having video and online capabilities, it’s never been easier to shoot a short video to showcase your apartment. Some possibilities include:
- Meet the team video
- Tour of the features and amenities
- Clips of the latest apartment events
Communicate the way they do
With smartphones attached to their hips and with thumbs as dexterous as an Olympic gymnast, Millennials appreciate when you communicate the way they do. For most Millennials that would be texting and emailing. Texting to them is not weird or too informal (they text on average 20 times a day, according to Pew). The speed of information is critical, and the fastest way for them to communicate with you and vice versa is most likely through texting. Remember that keeping them in the loop with updates on progress and next steps goes a long way to building rapport and increased tenancy.
Think outside-the-box for modern solutions. Some apartments are now harnessing the video power of Skype and Facetime to give video tours of apartments.
Outline the Lease Process
One of the most confusing aspects of renting not usually addressed by apartments is the leasing process. For most Millennials (especially if it’s their first time away from the nest), it’s like speaking in a foreign language. Don’t underestimate the power of outlining and articulating their unspoken fears of what to do and expect when moving. They will love you for it.
What’s the timeline for the various moving parts in going from inquiry to moving in? What paperwork and documents do we need to have? There’s a multitude of common questions that you answer on a regular basis but haven’t written down. Writing it down forms a dual purpose:
- You don’t need to repeat the answer to every person coming in.
- You educate and inform your prospective renters before they even come to talk to you.
Key Takeaway: By expanding your visibility online, managing your reputation, and utilizing social marketing, you can make strides in allowing your marketing to build a relationship with Millennials, which will yield a higher return from your efforts.
How do you currently stack up in your Marketing Magic for Millennials? If you’re an apartment manager, we understand the chaos and the many hats you need to wear just to keep things from falling apart. That’s why we created our Apartment Marketing Toolkit. We firmly believe that by taking the time to work honestly through our thought-provoking toolkit, you will gain clarity and make leaps in improving every aspect of your apartment marketing.
Sign up below to receive your Apartment Marketing Toolkit and receive future emails to improve your apartment marketing.