What does marketing success look like for your property management company? Have you defined what a "win" looks like—or is it an ever-changing target you can never seem to hit? Without a property management marketing plan, you'll inevitably succumb to random acts of marketing, risk overspending on various "shiny objects," and have a very difficult time trying to get traction with your marketing.
If you're managing your marketing in-house, you'll need a marketing plan just as much as someone working with an expert property management marketing agency.
Great news for our clients: RentBridge creates quarterly campaign plans for you! We can also create annual marketing plans if you prefer to see the bigger picture. If you're not working with us, here are some tips for creating a marketing plan on your own.
Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats (SWOT)
A SWOT analysis is a business owner's best friend. When you understand where your business stands relative to the competition, you end up with valuable data that you can use to help craft your marketing strategy. We wrote a great blog about it here.
Your property management marketing should play up your strengths, target your opportunities, and look at ways to minimize weaknesses and threats. A SWOT analysis should be done at least annually; as the market continually changes, so will your analysis.
Define Your Audience
One of the very first things we do with a client is to build a set of buyer personas.
Personas let our content creation team know who we are creating content for, your ideal client. Negative personas let us know who we should avoid (usually, the landlord who is unwilling to pay for repairs and maintenance, who wants to micromanage every penny, that sort of thing). Think of it as a net: you need the right sized holes for the fish you're trying to catch—so you don't end up with a bunch of carp.
SMART goals are our favorite: specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely.
- A goal of improving leads by 5% month over month for the next six months is an example of a SMART goal.
- Be sure you are taking the time to build your numbers before you set goals so you can look at actual metrics and choose attainable goals.
- If your closing ratio is only 2%, it might not be possible to add 100 doors in six months—but increasing your closing ratio to 10% would be possible and would make the most of the property management leads you are getting.
- Goals should always be specific to you, based on your data and SWOT analysis.
Choose Your Actions
After you've laid the groundwork, you can decide what marketing activities you want to focus on to help you achieve your goals. If your goal is to improve your closing ratio, you might lay out a plan like this:
- Enroll your business development team in a training course.
- Improve the quality of leads coming in by implementing a lead scoring system and not talking to leads until they are ready.
- Adding a new content offer and campaign focused on a persona's pain point not previously targeted.
All three of these things can help support that goal. If your goal is to increase leads, perhaps your goal is to improve your overall ranking by 20%. It really depends on what your goals are—and the ways you can reach them within your budget.
Set a Budget
You have to set a budget to be able to stay within it. You also need a budget to be able to determine your ROI and give the people working on your marketing parameters to stay within.
- Map out how much each element of your plan should cost—along with how long each element is expected to take. This will help you ensure your project stays on track or alert you when the plan needs to be revisited.
- Setting a budget will also force you to focus on specific elements of your plan if your wishlist is large, and your budget cannot accommodate it.
- Instead of trying to do everything with a thin budget, choose a few things to do well, measure their success, and then use that data when you are creating your next marketing plan.
If you don't have the time to create a property management marketing plan, contact RentBridge! We specialize in property management marketing, property management websites, and property management process automation.
We're a group of property managers working to make property management better for our clients and the industry as a whole! If you choose to work with RentBridge, we'll create a custom marketing plan and campaigns that make sense for your business.