This time of year can terrify even the most seasoned builder and new construction marketing teams…it’s the heart of the dreaded planning season! Don’t fear; there are ways to make the experience less frightful and more insightful. Here are some things to consider as you approach 2016.
Is your spending mix designed to optimize results for how media is consumed today or are you relying too much on what has worked in the past? There’s a new media mix—and it is far different than ever before, with more media channels, more devices, and even more opportunities to connect with home shoppers. How do you find the most effective balance within a budget that makes sense now?
Take social marketing, for example, which has completely redefined the digital media space. Many builders are still struggling to understand how to monetize social media. The key is to treat it like any other corporate initiative—establish a business and messaging strategy that elevates your brand and execute it.
There’s no doubt social marketing has changed the way builders disseminate their messages. We’ve moved past simply pushing messages at home shoppers through mass media and into a world where building relationships and dynamic two-way conversation is essential. Your potential buyers expect to be able to access your brand in real-time on any given channel, and offer feedback, comments, questions, complaints and praise—whenever and wherever they choose. As a business, however, you must be able to guide the conversation to achieve the results you desire. How well does your social media strategy match your brand promise and your prospects’ interests?
In real estate, you often have to reach out to multiple consumer groups. It’s simply not effective to blanket the market with one message because what attracts a young professional does not necessarily appeal to a growing family. As active adults become seniors, their housing needs change, too.
Does your message resonate with each of your target audiences and what’s important to them today? Has your creative evolved or are you hanging on to last year’s strategy? To grab the attention of diverse audiences, builders and senior living facilities need to customize their message based on who they are trying to influence—first timer or downsizer, urban chic or suburban DINK, home shopper or Realtor.
But don’t abandon your brand…expand upon it. Promote competitive advantages that are relevant now. Put yourself in the mind of your customers and focus on what they want—and need—to know. Then speak to them in a manner that connects with them. Motivate your core audience by delivering a message that is on point.
With 20 years of advertising and PR experience, Debbie Szwast understands the multifaceted nature of marketing. A true believer in the art of communication, she acquired an MBA in marketing and a Master’s degree in writing. Today, she calls on the knowledge she has gained over the past two decades to formulate big-picture strategies and execute comprehensive marketing plans for clients across the country.