Marketing On The Internet


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From the MIchigan Conference on Affordable Housing, April 12, 2011

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  • Other things that might get you ghosted:Posting the same floor plan multiple times per dayUsing all CAPS in your posting titleA posting title with lots of special characters: !!! ***
  • Story about girl in college who thought it was weird when I emailed her“Events” are young people’s social calendars
  • Marketing On The Internet

    1. 1. Marketing on the Internet<br />Jeremy Schneider<br />Founder, RentLinx<br />Lead Developer, MSHDA’s<br />Michigan Conference on Affordable Housing<br />April 12, 2011<br />
    2. 2. Why Market? Sales Funnel/Pipeline<br />Starts with a lead:<br />Marketing/Advertising<br />Phone calls, emails, walk-ins<br />Onsite Tour<br />Sales/Qualifying<br />Application<br />Qualify<br />$$<br />Signed Lease!<br />
    3. 3. What’s a lead worth?<br />Who cares if you miss a few? They’ll find me!<br />Example:<br />100 unit building, 95% occupancy<br />Average rent $800<br />10% lead to lease conversion ratio<br />Marketing generates 20 leads/month<br />2 new leases signed/month<br />$1600 new rent / 20 leads = $80/lead!<br />
    4. 4. *<br />Brought to you by MSHDA<br /><br />Free to list! Free to search!<br />Affordable and Accessible housing options<br />24x7 Access, Unlimited updates<br />Easy to use<br />Part of the RentLinx network<br />FREE!<br />
    5. 5. MHL Success (Through April 2011)<br />Went live December, 2006<br />5 Million Property Views in last 12 months!<br />98,000+ leads in last 12 months!<br />31,000+ properties representing 386,000+ Michigan rental housing units listed – and more are added every day<br />All of these numbers increased 20%-50%over 1 year ago!<br />EXCLUSIVE<br />
    6. 6. Michigan Housing Locator<br />
    7. 7. MHL:Search Results<br /><ul><li>Sorted by Modification Date
    8. 8. Users can mark favorites</li></li></ul><li>TIP<br />Keep your property information current! *<br />Jump to the top of the list! Properties are sorted by modification date<br />Click “Mark as Current” to update modification date<br />
    9. 9. MHL:Favorites<br /><ul><li>Save, view and send your favorites!
    10. 10. E-mail a list of potentials to a client or to yourself to save!</li></li></ul><li>MHL:<br /><ul><li>Hone in on exact location
    11. 11. Change search radius
    12. 12. Drag and drop starting point</li></li></ul><li>MHL:View results on a map<br />
    13. 13. TIP<br />EXCLUSIVE<br />Add photos!<br />Take photos on sunny days!*<br />More photos = More traffic!<br />*Statistics as tracked by RentLinx on the RentLinx network of sites<br />
    14. 14. Where Would You Rather Live?<br />
    15. 15. MHL:Property Details<br /><ul><li>Attachments & Links
    16. 16. Labels by MSHDA
    17. 17. Photo Gallery
    18. 18. Print Brochure
    19. 19. Mark as favorite
    20. 20. Utilities</li></li></ul><li>TIP<br />Use the description!<br />Potential residents crave the details<br />A great place to list everything that won’t fit elsewhere<br />Generate more qualified leads!*<br />More opportunities to match keyword searches<br />Search engines thrive on this content!<br />
    21. 21. The Long Tail – Search Keywords<br />EXCLUSIVE<br />* keyword stats from Google Analytics<br />
    22. 22. What are renters searching for?<br />“Top” Keywords<br />#1. “ann arbor apartments”<br />#2. “kalamazoo apartments”<br />#3. “east lansing apartments”<br />Some other “down the list” searches<br />#941. “houses for rent in manistee michigan” <br />#3,139. “senior subsidized living in garden city michigan”<br />#13,052. “all bills paid apartments flint, mi”<br />#22,361. “for rent gas light district of grand rapids, mi”<br />#35,477. “show me all the apartments by the #3 bus route”<br />EXCLUSIVE<br />* keyword stats from Google Analytics<br />
    23. 23. Do longer descriptions help?<br />0: Blank!<br />1-200: One or two sentences<br />201-500: One long paragraph<br />501-1000: Two long paragraphs<br />1000+: Getting kind of wordy!<br />EXCLUSIVE<br />
    24. 24. MHL:Unit Details<br /><ul><li>Interior Photos
    25. 25. Map
    26. 26. Modification Date</li></li></ul><li>TIP<br />Add interior photos and floor plans!<br />Renters love it<br />Some sign leases sight-unseen!<br />
    27. 27. TIP<br />List the rent or rent range!<br />Renters prefer to see places they know they can afford instead of calling to be disappointed<br />If your rent is based on income, use the description to describe general qualifications<br />Provide a link to your income qualifications<br />
    28. 28. MHLSchool Districts<br />
    29. 29. MHL:School Districts<br /><ul><li>Automatically decided based on latitude and longitude
    30. 30. View boundaries on map</li></li></ul><li>MHL:School Districts<br /><ul><li>Easy to change, if necessary!</li></li></ul><li>TIP<br />Add links & attachments!<br />Links provide helpful info to renters and improve the search engine rank of your website<br />Attachments give your future residents access to important documents before they walk in the door<br />
    31. 31. TIP<br />Upload your attachments in PDF format<br />Everyone can view on any type of computer<br />Will always be viewed and printed as you expect<br />“But Jeremy,” you may be asking yourself, “don’t you need expensive software to create PDF documents?”<br />No! Visit for a free converter!<br />OR: Send your documents as an attachment to It’s like magic!<br />Any file that you can print, you can convert to PDF<br />
    32. 32. MHLRent Reasonableness/ Comparables Report!<br />
    33. 33. MHLRent Reasonableness/ Comparables Report!View similar units sorted by similarity. Choose 3 units of your choice!<br />
    34. 34. MHLRent Reasonableness/ Comparables Report!Generate and customize a report to print or download!<br />
    35. 35. But wait, there’s more!<br />Many More!<br />
    36. 36. RentLinx .<br />Track and record your phone leads<br />Advertise on additional pay-to-list sites<br />Generate custom average rent reports<br />Pay only $10/verified Plus! lead<br />MHL Leads always 100% free<br />Set your own monthly budget<br />No contracts no commitments<br />
    37. 37. How to Get Listed?<br /><ul><li>Visit
    38. 38. Click “List your Properties”</li></li></ul><li>*<br />Free classified site<br />Posts sorted by date<br />City specific sub-sites<br />Pros:<br /><ul><li>Free!
    39. 39. High traffic in Detroit and Ann Arbor
    40. 40. Some swear by it</li></ul>Cons:<br /><ul><li>Can attract spam or fraud
    41. 41. Necessary to repost often
    42. 42. May get less attention from affordable/senior housing seekers</li></li></ul><li>NEW craigslist helper!<br />Save time when posting to craigslist<br />NEW FOR ‘11<br />
    43. 43. This is one of 3 craigslist templates<br />
    44. 44. Craigslist posting tips<br /><ul><li>DON’T use ***ALL CAPS OR EXCESSIVE !!! AND OTHER SYMBOLS @@@
    45. 45. DON’T use the word “Free”
    46. 46. DON’T over post. Leave at least 2 days between posts
    47. 47. DO delete your old post before you post again
    48. 48. DO check to make sure your ads appear in the list
    49. 49. DO obey craigslist’s terms of use
    50. 50. DO choose to “anonymize” your email address
    51. 51. DO describe a specific available unit instead of general community information</li></li></ul><li>Know if you’ve been ghosted by craigslist!<br />If you see “Viewed 0 times”, you’ve been ghosted<br />
    52. 52. Social Media<br />Includes: Blogs, micro-blogging, social networking, event coordinating, etc.<br />Great way to stay top of mind, increase referrals<br />“Inbound” marketing. Let leads come to you.<br />
    53. 53. Kid’s be usin’ facebook<br />Create a “Page” not an “Account” (Google “Create facebook page” for instructions)<br />Invite residents to events<br />Tag residents in photos*<br />Residents can “become a fan”<br />Status updates: “Free cookies in the office!”<br />Follow the site rules, or risk alienating users<br />Example: facebook<br />
    54. 54. Benefits:<br /><ul><li> Appear in news feeds
    55. 55. Residents get reminders about events
    56. 56. Your name will appear when browsing photos
    57. 57. Your property will appear on all your “fans” profile pages
    58. 58. Stay top of mind</li></li></ul><li>What is <br />?<br /><ul><li>Examples:
    59. 59. Stuck in line at popular concert
    60. 60. Find out from friends about traffic or restaurants
    61. 61. For properties:
    62. 62. Tweet about positive/informative things
    63. 63. Free cookies in the office!
    64. 64. Pot hole fixed in parking lot
    65. 65. New special/referral program</li></li></ul><li>Your Website!<br />Best Marketing?<br />Renters trust as the most accurate source<br />Can be very inexpensive<br />A little can go a long way<br />Cheap domain names:*<br />
    66. 66. Market Your Website!<br />Signs<br />Business Cards<br />E-mail Signatures<br />Brochures<br />Print and Internet Ads<br />Voicemail <br />Welcome magnets<br />Links from Partner websites! *<br />Add a link from your RentLinx listing!<br />
    67. 67. Your Listings on Your Site!<br />Your Website!<br />Visit and click on “WebLinx” for more details<br />
    68. 68. IDEA: New Tenant Fridge Magnet!<br />
    69. 69. Review LeadsReview all incoming e-mails and phone calls (plus only)<br />
    70. 70. When Are Renters E-Mailing?<br />EXCLUSIVE<br />
    71. 71. When Are Renters E-Mailing?<br />EXCLUSIVE<br />
    72. 72. When Are Renters Looking? Moral.<br />Only 40.9% of MHL web leads came in during 9-5, M-F business hours<br />Many renters may not bother calling after hours<br />Make sure your e-mail works!<br />Reply (preferably call) as promptly as possible!<br />
    73. 73. Phone Call Study!<br />Phone call tracking implemented in Sept. ‘09<br />RentLinx Plus! Properties track their phone leads via special toll free numbers<br />Michigan calls by the numbers:<br />7,000+: Calls tracked and recorded<br />600+: Distinct properties receiving calls<br />150+: Distinct management companies<br />EXCLUSIVE<br />
    74. 74. When Are Renters Calling?<br />EXCLUSIVENEW FOR ‘10<br />
    75. 75. When Are Renters Calling?<br />EXLCUSIVENEW FOR ‘10<br /><ul><li>76.1% of calls came in between 9-5, M-F
    76. 76. 12.1% came in between 9-5, Sat and Sun</li></li></ul><li>How Are The Calls Answered?<br />Notes:<br /><ul><li> Only 44% of renters could talk to a human during business hours
    77. 77. 62% of renters hung up when answered by machine
    78. 78. *55% of renters who hung up never called back or e-mailed</li></ul>EXCLUSIVE<br />
    79. 79. Does Answering Help?<br />EXCLUSIVE<br />
    80. 80. Crazy Idea: Call back hang ups!<br /><ul><li>When you miss a call and no message is left, call them back!
    81. 81. “Wow!” customer service
    82. 82. Has never freaked someone out!</li></li></ul><li>Average Rent Report<br /><ul><li> Compare prices, amenities, property types and sizes
    83. 83. Customize to match your chosen area based on specific location, zip code, city or county.
    84. 84. Included free when any property is upgraded to Plus!</li></ul>EXCLUSIVE<br />
    85. 85. Why Market? Sales Funnel/Pipeline<br />Phone calls, emails, walk-ins<br />Onsite Tour<br />Application<br />Qualify<br />$$<br />Signed Lease!<br />
    86. 86. Why Market? Sales Funnel/Pipeline<br />Attachments<br />Links<br />Answer phone<br />facebook<br />Up-to-date<br />Good<br />Description<br />Your site<br />RentLinx Plus!<br />MHL<br />craigslist<br />Prompt reply<br />Photos<br />twitter<br />RentLinx network<br />Phone calls, emails, walk-ins<br />Onsite Tour<br />Application<br />Qualify<br />$$<br />Lots of Signed Leases!!!<br />
    87. 87. Questions?<br />