Resident retention starts on move-in day.
Although the initial lease is signed the effort doesn’t stop there and leasing managers should continue to sell the renewal every 30 days with meaningful contact with residents in some way, either in person through hosting an event or activity, or through marketing collateral you send them via email, snail mail or a personal door hanger.
Below are some apartment resident retention ideas using social media, traditional communications and event planning to create the sense of community that leads to tenant retention.
An Apartment Resident Retention Plan that Leads to Renewals
Use this guide for apartment resident retention ideas that will help you develop a successful renewal plan for new customers:
- Move-in Day – Acknowledge a new resident with a welcome home door hanger they see the first time they use their key. Custom change-of-address cards make a unique welcome gift or get the love flowing when you fill the refrigerator with ingredients for dinner. Don’t forget the recipe card.
- 30-Day Touch – Introduce leasing or maintenance staff through a signed greeting card. Send a personal V.I.P. invitation to new residents to make sure you see them at this month’s event.
- 60-Day Touch – It’s time for a Resident Satisfaction survey. Follow up with a thank you postcard when you get a survey response.
- 90-Day Touch – Life is good. It’s time to ask for a referral for friends, family and coworkers who may want to live in your community. Also, send postcards asking for maintenance work orders for anything that needs repair so that you can solve the small problems before they become frustrating.
- 120-Day Touch – Recurring community activities offer valuable time to build relationships and establish rapport. Host a gathering where you and your residents can mingle and connect.
- Upon Renewal – Send a thank you card when residents renew because you’ve just earned a repeat customer.
Social Media Keeps You Relevant and Ripe for Apartment Resident Retention
Apartment resident retention ideas that connect with renters on an ongoing basis include one of the more popular forms of communication.
If you’re not engaging residents via social media, you’re missing out on the opportunity to interact with them daily. It’s a free, immediate and fun way to create a conversation and a sense of community.
Social media isn’t meant to be an additional outlet to sell, but rather an avenue for retention. Online media outlets offer a creative and casual place for you to share a more authentic and approachable persona.
Every expert and survey on social media will concur – postings with images get the most attention. That’s your permission to share your apartment marketing flyers online. Be sure to use your apartment Facebook page, Twitter, Pinterest or blog to share recent happenings in not only the apartment community, but also the neighborhood at large. Are you an expert about life in your ‘hood?
Social media allows you to build your identity quickly, so be sure what you’re posting is the kind of message you want to get across. It allows people to get to know the various aspects of your apartment community and the kind of on culture you want to create at your property.
Decide what your persona will be, develop a voice for creating messages and show followers what to expect if they choose to engage with your property management team.
When you take advantage of the networking opportunities that social media offers, it tells people that you’re keeping current with the forms of communication they value.
Traditional Apartment Resident Retention Ideas with A Renewal Purpose
Modern technology makes it easier than ever to keep in touch with residents regularly, but don’t forget the power of simple apartment resident retention ideas such as walking the property and engaging in conversations.
Face-to-face human encounters will inspire your next step when you learn more about what’s happening in a customer’s personal life. To recognize the personal moments that make up a resident’s life, community managers can send birthday cards, get-well-soon wishes, notes of congratulations or praise, as well as invitations to recurring events happening on site.
When onsite events take place your property management team should be front and center, the ambassadors so to speak, of interaction, networking and cruising the crowd for information.
You know whose apartment lease renewal is coming up soon and this is a leasing agent’s chance to influence the signing decision in a casual, relaxed setting.
Property managers can seek out apartment residents attending who are supporters and encourage a positive social media post or online review. Yes, many apartment resident retention ideas will move through your online portals but it still takes a personal push to direct customers there.
Event Planning: An Abundance of Resident Retention Ideas
Hosting events is an essential way to bond with residents and take their happiness temperature.
Plan fun activities for your residents that create a unique community vibe and reinforce the benefits of living in your multifamily housing.
Remember that resident events are not just a time to party, but also an opportunity for leasing agents to talk face to face with renters about their living satisfaction, improvements, and lease renewals. You may even walk away with a few referrals.
If you’re ready to host an apartment retention event, the challenge starts with getting prospects and residents to attend.
Here’s a plan to implement apartment resident retention ideas and increase attendance at events:
- First of Month – Write a newsletter about your apartment community news and include a blurb about the event as a first step in advertising. Reinforce the date announcement by sending an email blast to current residents and mail a post card to future prospects as save-the-date invitations.
- 10 Days Prior – Put posters in high-traffic areas such as the apartment leasing office, resident lobby and community elevator, laundry room, recycle center, clubhouse and fitness center or wherever residents gather. Now you’re creating a buzz.
- Invite – Mail Personal VIP Cards to new residents moving soon, attach or link the property event flier in resident emails or post on your resident portal.
- 2 Days Prior – Deliver marketing door hangers to resident doorknobs for a last-minute event reminder they are sure to see.
- Event Day – Display an A-board with event details at the apartment leasing office as well as an on-screen display as a visual reminder at entrances and exits to your property driveway, parking lot or building lobby.
- The Day After – Send thank you cards to attendees from your resident event and post untagged photos on social media outlets or in resident portal message boards. Make sure you have permission before snapping a photo.
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