This storyline isn't new. Jennifer has blogged about what her kids
about SEO, what her kids taught her about blogging,
and what her kids taught her about Social Media
. A friend in the apartment business just blogged
about Bass Fishing and Leasing Apartments. As you can tell Gus is a
dog, a mostly wonderful Bull Terrier. Gus is a year and a half old and
is my first dog of my own. Gus goes to the office regularly, and has
learned to regularly tweet on his own twitter account @Gus_Urbane
has created quite a stir from time to time.
ENGAGE AND EMOTION
We have all heard about the Four P's of Marketing, but what about the two E's, Emotion and Engagement,
are you fully utilizing them? Gus,
like most pets really knows how to evoke our emotions. In our small
business, a boutique property management business
, we decided to go
after the pet market, and accept pets. Lots of places accept pets, but
with weight and breed restrictions, and a hefty pet deposit. We decided
to keep it simple; We Love Pets at Urbane, no fees and no breed
restrictions. The theory was this, If we have a good resident, they
likely have a good pet. If we have a bad resident, they likely have a
bad pet. We worked really hard on an enhanced resident screening system
and attracting great residents, which has also improved collections. A
nice side benefit to accepting pets!
But the success of this program isn't about accepting pets, It is about
"Urbane Loves Pets"
which has successfully evoked prospects and
residents emotion. Consequently, we own the local pet market. If you
are going after sliver markets, go with vengeance and own them.
MAKE IT A PLAYFUL EXPERIENCE
Gus is a pretty happy guy, tail always wagging. He just wants to play,
play and play. He is Fun Boy. With that, we have lightened up the
entire leasing process. Apartment hunting is not a walk in the park. We
have a Centralized Leasing Center, known as Urbane Underground that is
anything but typical. There are farm watering troughs with tropical
plants in them. A forty-five foot long bamboo planter. Crazy music
playing. A Tropical bird hanging out. A conference table that hangs
from the ceiling with no legs. Anything but typical. Point is, it is
very whimsical and fun. Lighten up your approach, have some fun along the way. Life is Short.
EVERYONE LOVES TREATS
Anyone who has pets know they love treats. Gus is no different, he
lives for treats. We have developed a pretty interesting program and
have created Urbane VIP cards. They resemble a credit card and enable
the holder to cash in on several discounts locally. During the tour, we go
through the program, explain the benefits and send them off with an
Urbane VIP Card. I am pretty sure our competitors aren't forking over
any treats. It is a great way to differentiate, and is funded by the
MAKE ME LAUGH
Gus loves to make me laugh, and he does a great job of that. Our
marketing at Urbane is anything but typical or traditional. We set up
movies that reverse play against a backdrop that show silhouettes of
girls dancing together
, guys dancing together and a variety of other
wacky stuff. We can set up the movie in minutes, and it comes on at
dark and shuts off at 2;00 AM.
Cars and people literally stop in the
street and stare. They laugh, and make lots of comments about Urbane,
including some who think that two guys dancing together is too
provocative. We like that. Is your marketing material causing your
prospects to talk about you, or does it end up in the trash because it
is outdated old and stale? BTW, the movie we made cost us nothing to
make, the projector is reused over and over.
Perhaps the most significant thing I have learned from Gus is that he
loves to connect with people,
and so do your customers.
Our blog, The Urbane Life
has caused lots of folks to connect with
hip and cool local business, blathering and goings on and just a
general give back to the community. But how can you do those kind of
things one may ask, what is the pay back. Try this on, page one Google,
number one ranking for Apartments Royal Oak
, one of the most used
search's. Where does your Small Business fare with a Google Ranking. Even
more, what kind of web traffic does your community drive? We will have
over 14,0000 visitors this month. We only have 360 units. I think the
blog is a great payoff don't you?
You too can try these things. They aren't hard, and they are not
expensive. We would love to hear your thoughts.
June 22, 2009
Eric Brown has (30) years in the Multi-Family Apartment Business having built and developed over 17,000 apartment units, both market rate, luxury and tax credit apartments. Having started Urbane Apartments in 2003 after leaving a lengthy stint as a Senior Vice President at Village Green Companies, a national apartment developer, Eric decided he wanted to create wealth, and set out from Corporate America on his own and created Urbane Apartments in Royal Oak, MI.