Practical Magic – Marketing

Automation for Multifamily

Sponsored by RENTCafé

Practical Magic – Marketing

“On average we only read about 30 percent of our own emails… so think of all the emails you miss,” said Jamie Gorski, Chief Marketing Officer of The Bozzuto Group. But, according to Gorski, most people do read 99 percent of their texts. “If we can get in people’s phones and communicate with them by text, we’ll have a better outcome,” Gorski added. “We need to focus on the channels people actually use to communicate.”

Marketers are starting to explore other avenues — beside email — that can provide more bang for the buck when it comes to getting consumers’ attention. Some of the most innovative ideas were shared on Day One of AIM | 18 during “Practical Magic – Marketing Automation for Multifamily” moderated by Esther Bonardi, Vice President of Marketing, Yardi.

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“Texts require an immediate response,” said Bonardi. “This is a step you can take today. The statistics say 47 percent of our text leads convert to tours. And 17 percent of those leads ultimately result in a lease. Compared to non-text leads, these numbers are extremely compelling.”

In addition to text message marketing, Gorski and Bonardi are also enthusiastic about cart abandonment and recapture techniques on relevant websites. According to Gorski, The Bozzuto Group compared their websites to Amazon’s in order to glean insights about how the behemoth retailer keeps customers interested and how it nurtures the sale.

“Amazon lets their site be evergreen,” Gorski explained. “They’re constantly using data to change it. That way, Amazon is always slightly different every time you come back — in ways you probably don’t even notice. That’s what we wanted to do with our site.”

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The Bozzuto Group’s

The Bozzuto Group’s newly revamped website will launch in July with new functionalities designed to appeal to prospects, such as the ability to do more with eCommerce and to set personal favorites. All those adaptations will encourage personalization and enhanced user-specific capabilities, including the ability to save upcoming appointments, add communities to favorites and bookmark floor plans.

On the flip side, The Bozzuto Group will also benefit — they’ll get access to all that valuable preference data from engaged and motivated prospects. Further, Gorski emphasized, multifamily websites really ought to make more consistent use of exit intent pop-ups and nudge marketing. “Sometimes when we talk about pop-ups, there’s a strong reaction,” she said. “But, they really work. You spend so much time on your brand and your positioning, creating these fantastic websites. When customers come to you, you should do everything you can to keep them on-page. You need to have great calls to action.”

Still, Bonardi cautioned, marketers looking to employ nudge marketing widgets must be judicious about how and when the end user encounters them. “For the most part, your homepage is the wrong place for a nudge message,” she said. “It’s like asking someone to marry you on the first blind date.” A better place to put nudge messaging? According to Bonardi, the floorplan page is optimal. She finds that it consistently converts very well — sometimes, at a rate 95 percent higher than the homepage.

Don’t be afraid to think outside the box, or to wrap other technologies or conveniences around your services. “We had an idea about scheduling tours based on something we saw with Sephora,” Gorski said. “They had a scheduling tool for makeup consultations. We took that and ran with it. When you schedule a tour on one of our properties, we’ll send you a pre-tour text reminder with a link to order an Uber and we also have a text with a map that we send you. Now we’re doing things like audio podcasts of neighborhoods, too.”

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