Creating brand connection in a remote world means reaching people where they are
At one time, advertising campaigns relied on clever catchlines and upbeat jingles, but most companies have grown to understand that success now means reaching people on a deeper level. Meaningful brand connection in a remote world can prove elusive, but people really do seek out brands that fit their sense of values and that reflect their lifestyle.
Turn off your mute button
In 2020, even the most hands-on brands have had to pivot to online formats. Even hugging mom has become a virtual event for many. That has left people searching for authentic experiences online and in person.
“You’re on mute” has become 2020’s most uttered phrase and fodder for many jokes in virtual meetings. For multifamily brands, we think that phrase can serve as a gentle reminder to listen to your audience. Make sure they can hear you, and ask for feedback on whether your message hits home.
Content you spent months developing means nothing if your audience can’t hear it. Taking time to better understand your target market, and what they need, will help you craft marketing and customer service messages that ring loud and clear.
What multifamily residents need
Home has taken on a whole new level of importance amid a global pandemic. Now, more than ever, residents need to know that:
- Home is a safe place
- Property managers have their best interests at heart
- They have access to the tools they need to work from home
- Technology will remain reliable
- Delivery of food and other wants and needs will be easy and streamlined
- Pets are welcomed members of the community
- Neighbors don’t just share walls and hallways, but a community spirit
- Outdoor spaces will provide the recreation and respite they need
Your communication with existing residents and prospective ones should include information on each of those areas.
Show people that their health and safety is priority number one by clearly communicating your property’s safety protocols, from sanitation measures to building security. After that, make sure your residents and prospects know that you understand what they need to live – not just survive – and show them how you support all of their lifestyle needs.
Even if your on-site amenities remain closed or at limited capacity, how you support lifestyle needs with technology, concierge services and more can make a big difference in attracting and retaining renters.
Taking the connection deeper
Beyond the basics of safety and lifestyle, multifamily brands have a unique opportunity to blend virtual and in-person experiences for their residents.
As we head into late fall and winter, and as many cities have reinstated social distancing restrictions, multifamily residents will be looking for ways to stay connected. A property that helps them do so could prove invaluable to them. As this Grazia contributor writes:
“For many of us – single or attached – the pandemic has brought feelings of isolation into sharp focus, blown open the meaningfulness of our relationships and sent anxieties and identities reeling. Who are we without the thrill and pace of our ordinary lives? Who are our real friends? What are we left with when the rug is pulled out from underneath us? And what do we do when we only have ourselves?”
As a property manager, you can foster a sense of community among your residents – pandemic or not. From community-wide decorating contests to virtual book clubs, you can bring people together. Yes, people could seek out these types of events among their broader network, but don’t underestimate people’s desire to know their neighbors and to connect on a hyper-local level.
This article offers 25 ideas for socially distanced or virtual community events, including scavenger hunts and multiplayer games. The National Apartment Association expands on those ideas here.
Again, the key to success with community engagement programs is understanding your residents. Ask them for ideas and feedback. The stronger sense of belonging you can cultivate will lead to a happier and more loyal resident base – and one that others will seek out.
Developing a connected brand
Our team has worked in the multifamily industry for more than two decades. We have seen it all – the great, the good, the bad and the ugly.
We have also seen the magical! The spark that happens when a property moves from a basic brand on paper to a living, breathing, connected community. That magic occurs when leadership, staff and residents work together to build something special. Throughout it all, communication and branding support helps ensure that both residents and prospects see and hear the magic every day – and that any images or messages shared reflect the true culture, vibe and values of the place.
Need help creating a connected brand? Reach out to us. Our team of multifamily branding and design mavens can help you develop a strategy based on years of experience and creative collaboration.