Now that we've reached 2020, it's hard to believe that "The Great Recession" ended ten years ago. For many established real estate investors, this was a great time to snatch up properties at a discount.
For many others, property managers were there to save the day, helping them turn a house that was once worth more than their mortgage into an asset. The Great Recession provided property managers with a clear plan of attack when it came to their property management marketing: find drowning owners and help them turn their ship around.
The stressors causing our current economic conditions may or may not careen us into another recession. If they do—and many experts suggest they will—a different strategy will be necessary.
- Cities are closing restaurants, bars, and shutting down entertainment venues: in a sense, local culture is turning off the lights and closing the shutters for the long haul.
- Tenants—even the best tenants—may struggle to pay the rent while policymakers work to fund programs that will make the sudden hemorrhaging of jobs easier for the market to bear.
- If tenants struggle to make rent, naturally, some property owners will panic and want to back out of management services.
This is absolutely not the time to stop marketing out of fear for one's bottom line. Instead, it's time to double down on your property management marketing efforts. Why? The answers might surprise you.
Here are the top four reasons why you should protect your marketing budget through an economic downturn.
Your Competition Is Reducing Their Marketing
If your gut instinct is to cut marketing expenditures, you can bet that as times get tough your weaker competitors—as well as your more reactionary competitors—are going to slash or eliminate their marketing spend. When they do so, every dollar that you spend on marketing will be more effective by orders of magnitude.
Owners who are looking for support and hands-off management in the face of a crisis will be able to cut through the noise easier and get right to your business. Not only will property owners be able to find you more easily, but you will be the only one seeming to offer the kind of services they need after everyone else has gone dark.
You'll Be the Expert
Inbound marketing is based around creating content that is meant to help people. Your current and future clients are going to be just as uneasy as you are—and they are going to look to the experts for reassurance. Continuing to create content—especially relevant, current content—will build your audience in a big way.
As you've probably learned (if you have been a reader of our blog for long enough), you'll know that the buyers' journey is three stages: awareness, consideration, and decision. Not every person moves through this journey at the same pace—but they all have the same needs: answers to their questions. Keep answering those questions and guide your potential clients through the tough times, and you're sure to be their choice when the economy recovers and doors reopen.
You'll Show Your Stability
- If your clients read your blog, and it abruptly stops, that is a signal that you aren't confident in your ability to manage the downturn.
- It is also a signal to your competitors that are watching that the time is perfect for them to make their move.
- Continuing to market shows your clients that it is business as usual at your company—and there is no cause for alarm.
- This not only shores up the confidence of your current clients but paves the way for new ones that have watched you weather the storm.
You'll Help Your Clients Grow
When interest levels drop, it is the perfect time to advertise to your owners how you can help them expand their investment portfolio. Know this: someone is going to send them that message—so it might as well be you!
- Partner with a realtor or create a landing page to showcase new investment purchasing services.
- Use property management marketing directed at property owners who are listing their properties for sale.
- Provide these property owners with alternatives to draw in new business.
Keeping Calm, Carrying On
So, how do you continue to market smart when times get tough?
- Ensure you have a marketing budget: Thoughtful and intentional spending is best! Random acts of marketing are rarely successful compared to well-strategized campaigns.
- Keep up with your metrics: You should know when you are making improvements or falling behind so you can adjust your strategy accordingly.
- Adjust your marketing spend: Distribute as makes sense between inbound and outbound techniques. Your various marketing efforts should all support each other.
- Review your campaigns: Are some of them just not working? Time to adjust your strategy. Times change—and so does consumer response to messaging. Be sure it is on point.
RentBridge is here to support our clients through the good times and the bad. Our marketing team is here to carefully monitor the metrics of our clients' campaigns and adjust to ensure that we continue to see the successes we have—no matter how the market is faring.
If you're not a RentBridge client and want to learn more about inbound-based property management marketing and if it could help your business thrive, there has never been a better time. We not only offer marketing services; we also offer process automation so your business can reduce overhead while continuing to grow. This kind of technology is going to be crucial in the coming days, and we'd love to talk to you about how to put it to work for your business.