I’m on the hunt for an apartment. Every weekend I walk into an apartment community, give the leasing agent my email address, and tour beautifully decorated model spaces. A week later, I receive an email from that leasing agent telling me how much they enjoyed our meeting, and how if I’d sign a lease they’d fly me to Bora Bora, along with giving me every Apple product I ever dreamed of… okay, I wish that was an actual offer. I’d sign right there. No questions.
But still. These leasing agents email me after every visit, and they tell me what I need to hear. It’s like they know I’m sitting there thinking about my future home…
These apartment complexes may not be mind readers, but they have a competitive edge that other communities do not— automated emails. When you’re searching for a home, it’s easy to forget who’s who on your search list, which is why it’s nice to have someone emailing you, reminding you who they are and what you saw.
Here’s the deal; marketing automation works. Specifically email automation. It simplifies processes and it really simplifies the email process. It’s efficient and it’s cool. And like all simple, efficient, cool tools, it has quirks. But don’t you worry. These quirks can be managed. Here are some ways to ensure your email automation efforts provide high-return marketing, not high-risk marketing.
1. Divide and Conquer.
Most email automation systems allow you to build custom email lists. It’s important to segment those lists based off certain criteria. For example, you may have a college student looking for housing. Or, instead, you may have a family seeking a pet-friendly neighborhood— two very different types of potential residents. These differences need to be captured. Make a survey, or simply have your leads fill out a guest card, so you can organize appropriately. A strong lead management system will help you minimize errors and maintain current information about your potential residents.
2. Tailor the Message.
Now that you have organized lists, create the picture perfect message. Inform the college students of “Back to School” deals, or update the pet-friendly seekers on your current animal policy. Then, find an automation system that adds personalization to your messages. You want to address the people you email by name (this reduces the likelihood of them viewing your emails as spam). Also, make sure you get permission to email. Give leads the chance to opt-in to emails, whether that be in person, online, or during the application process. This will give you higher qualified leads, and pleasant interactions with future residents.
3. Make Life Convenient.
Email automation is only one of several tools in the automation category. Create better experiences with automated processes. The world is becoming more mobile and more technical, so people have less and less time to physically tour apartments. Find a solution for these potential residents. Develop a process that allows virtual tours, online lease agreements, and community updates, all from the convenience of a computer or phone.
I am happy to say that I did find my future home. It is a quaint two bedroom, one bathroom apartment. I am also happy to say that I filled out my apartment application online, during lunch, and received same day approval. Without that convenience, I may have been on the hunt much, much longer. Oh! And they just emailed and welcomed me to the community. How nice.
Automation works. Think about it.