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Multifamily Housing Internet Marketing White Paper


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A 5-month case study of a multifamily housing portfolio that, by using Axiom Media Service, increased occupancy and revenue while cutting marketing expenses by more than 56%.

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Multifamily Housing Internet Marketing White Paper

  1. 1. ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! Multifamily Housing Internet Marketing 5-Month Case Study ! Revenues Increased 3.8% ! Marketing Expenses Reduced 56.3% ! Occupancy Increased from 96.2% to 99.9% ! 850-Unit Portfolio ! Results Tabulated December 15, 2009 – May 1, 2010 !
  2. 2. ! Multifamily Housing 5-Month Case Study: Revenues Increased 3.8%; Marketing Expenses Cut 56.3% By Michael Menche Managing Director, Axiom Media Service On May 1, 2010, Company A, an owner/manager of multifamily housing in the Northeast, reported one Company A vacancy out of 850 units, down from 32 vacancies on increased its December 15, 2009. occupancy rate from A 99.9% occupancy rate is remarkable in any 96.2% to market, but it is especially so in this economic 99.9% and climate. In the apartment industry, vacancy rates cut its track with the unemployment rate. In the First marketing Quarter of 2010, the unemployment rate was 9.7% expenses by nationwide and 9.8% in New Jersey, according to the 56.3%! New Jersey Department of Labor. New Jersey’s rate ! was just off a 33-year high of 10.1% in December 2009. Reports on vacancies vary. National vacancy rates in the first quarter 2010 were 10.6 percent for rental housing, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Reis, the New York research firm, announced that nationally, the apartment vacancy rate stayed flat at 8%. Reis added that apartment rents rose during the first quarter, ending five straight quarters of declines and signaling the worst may be over for the hard- hit sector. This gloomy environment begs for an analysis of Company A, which increased its monthly revenues 3.8% in less than five months. Here is a snapshot comparison of the portfolio’s performance: Table 1 Company A Portfolio Statistics Dec. 15, 2009 May 1, 2010 % Change Number of Properties 9 9 Total Units 850 850 Occupancies 818 849 Occupancy Rate 96.2% 99.9% 3.85% Average Monthly Rent $1,000 $1,000 Monthly Revenues $818,000 $849,000 3.80%
  3. 3. ! Integrated Int ernet Marketing “The Internet has emerged as the primary tool consumers use to find their next apartment,” said David Cardwell, National Multi Housing Council Vice President of Technology and Like any other Capital Markets. “More than 70 percent of renters begin business their apartment search online, and many firms now report reliant on more than 50 percent of their leasing activity is coming from consumer online sources.” search, an apartment This observation dates from April 2008. Since then Web 2.0 owner/ technology and social media platforms have exploded in manager popularity and accelerated consumer’s online activity. must optimize Facebook alone has gone from 60 million users to more than its Internet 400 million users as of February 2010. presence to avoid Like any other business reliant on consumer search, an competitive apartment owner/manager must optimize its Internet irrelevance presence to avoid competitive irrelevance and prohibitively and expensive catch-up in the future. Web 2.0 is becoming 3.0; prohibitively Internet search is becoming mobile and personal. Social expensive media networks are impacting organic search engine catch-up in rankings. the future.! ! Company A chose to leverage its existing strength to the Internet, hiring Axiom Media Service to conduct an integrated program to boost occupancy and reduce the cost of tenant acquisition. Craigslist & Paid Search In December 2009, Axiom Media Service initiated its craigslist program, featuring V-flyers, which are enhanced templates with photos and descriptions. A pay per click campaign with hundreds of keywords was begun via Google AdWords. In two weeks, eight units were rented at one property. As a result of the occupancy upswing, the company received an FDA $5.5 million refinancing loan that it had been in danger of losing. Directory Listing & Content Rep urposing Axiom Media Service created or edited each of the nine communities’ profiles—with key words, photos and links as appropriate—in dozens of search engine directories and third-party sites.
  4. 4. ! All suitable community and corporate promotional literature was repurposed for SEO visibility, tagged with keywords, and hosted on the Axiom Media Service platform, with links to As a result of Company A’s website. its Internet marketing Social Media campaign, Company A For middle-market housing stock such as Company A’s, reduced its social media supplements marketing indirectly by facilitating marketing leads and improving SEO rankings through link-building. expenses, Axiom Media Service created community pages on increased its Facebook, to be used as multimedia bulletin boards for occupancy tenants and local businesses, and on other platforms such and received as Twitter, YouTube and Flickr. a $5.5 million refinancing Reducing the Cost of Tenant Acquisition loan. The demonstrable success of the integrated Internet marketing campaign allowed Company A to slash its marketing expenses by more than half. Table 2 Company A Monthly Marketing Expenses Dec. 15, 2009 May 1, 2010 Change % Change $7,020 $7,020 Newspaper $6,000 $1,600 $5,220 $0 Realtor (one month rent) $3,666 $0 $1,790 $0 (avg. 4 leases/mo.) $1,556 $0 Axiom Media Service $0 $1,250 Google Paid Search $0 $1,176 V-flyer $0 $95 Total $25,252 $11,046 -$14,206 -56.3% Conventional media were weaned from the marketing mix and replaced by lower cost online sources. With its apartments almost entirely leased up, Company A now has a larger referral base for future rentals. Company A’s accelerated web presence continues to attract more qualified traffic. The company now maintains a waiting list at every property. The strong will get stronger.
  5. 5. ! Axiom Media Service: Experts in Online Residential Management We take on only one property or portfolio per market so each of our clients dominates its niche on the Internet. Our service is remarkably affordable and takes less than a month to implement. To schedule an introductory office visit or web demo, call us at (201) 348-8998, or visit ! ! ! ! !