The 3 Keys To An Effective Virtual Gathering Strategy for Apartments
July 23, 2020
The ability to have friendly connections with people outside of our core circles has changed dramatically since March 2020. For those looking to make a move, understanding our new communities is more top of mind than ever. Leveraging technology brings neighbors — both new and old — together for virtual experiences that make the present time feel a little like things used to be. The future of events and activations for multifamily operators will be constantly evolving. While we’ve seen restaurants and retailers dip a toe into reopening and socially distant, safe activity, it’s crucial for apartment communities to implement and maintain a number of virtual options to give prospective renters and residents both ample opportunity to engage and connect.
Whether to attract prospective tenants and/or elevate current resident satisfaction, thoughtful gatherings foster meaningful connections within communities. The rules have changed, but the needs remain the same. We’ve curated (and managed) three core types of virtual gatherings residential communities have implemented:
Hospitality-driven experiences specifically for prospective renters.
Virtual tours had been gaining steam long before the pandemic, but as we’re seeing with many other industry trends, COVID-19 has accelerated this need. With prospective renters largely unable (or unwilling) to tour properties, it’s never been more important for multifamily operators to deliver a thoughtful virtual experience. We recommend a variety of Introduction tactics, to give prospective renters the opportunity to engage in their preferred medium:
+ 24-Hour Open Houses: Self-guided 360-degree tours of available units and amenity spaces
+ Virtual Agent: Pre-recorded guided tours through the units and amenity spaces
+ Remote Live: Live virtual walk-throughs, one-on-one with leasing agent
+ Virtual Concierge: 24-hour chat bot that leads prospective residents to virtual leasing options
Activations that illustrate your property’s programming and partnerships.
These activations should live primarily on social media, to illustrate and amplify the level of programming offered at the property. More and more, these activations feature a tangible element to further connect with audiences — whether it’s a giveaway, at-home cocktail kit, or meal delivery.
+ Influencer Takeovers: Live social content created by social media influencers that your prospective renter may follow, including fitness how-tos, F&B at-home, and lifestyle DIYs
+ Games and Giveaways: Foster friendly competition and provide opportunities for giveaways from local, community-based businesses
+ Pre-ordered Perks: Takeout and delivery are here to stay — many multifamily properties are leveling up this offering by forging partnerships with local restaurants to bring exclusive experiences to their residents
Invitation-only for larger groups that engage and delight residents.
These invitation-only virtual events are more involved and add more value than the Lifestyle Activations — “going the extra mile” for residents will promote re-leases and supercharge word-of-mouth recommendations. The following examples provide residents never-before-offered opportunities to engage one-on-one with local experts.
+ Chef-Led Cooking Classes: An exclusive opportunity for residents to get face time with local chefs, be able to engage and interact (in addition to patronizing)
+ Fitness Classes with Local Studio Instructors: While some fitness locations have been opening up, we still find that people are more comfortable at home — give your residents the small-group boutique fitness experience at home.
+ DIY Hacks by Masters of the Craft: Your local plant shop, bike shop, and leather goods stores would all be excellent resources for creating a curated experience.
As the state of the pandemic continues to evolve, as will our strategy and implementation for multifamily communities. Need help evolving your strategy? We create and implement virtual gatherings, as well as smaller in-person experiences — contact us to make sure you’re maximizing your virtual gathering strategy.
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