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How to Promote Your Rental on Social Media

You go where your customers are. It’s the first law of any sort of marketing or promotion. And where are there a lot of your potential customers? On social media, so marketing to them there is pretty much essential for renting out your property.

But how to do it? That’s the real question that comes up, and it can seem overwhelming if you’re not overly familiar with the various social media sites out there. It’s not impossible, though - with these tips and guidelines, you can promote your rental on social media much more easily and with greater focus.

Have a goal/strategy in mind

You’re turning to social media for a reason, which is getting more potential tenants, but how are you going to find them? How many people do you want to reach out to? What kind of people are you trying to reach? Even if you’re not sure, just starting with an idea will help you a lot along the way. By all means, adjust as you go and get more experience, but just starting with what you want to do and how you might do it will give you a leg up early on.

Use cross-posting carefully

You probably do want to be on most networks, so cross-posting seems like a godsend. Just open up Buffer or another similar app, write a post, and it goes everywhere at once. Job done.

Not quite. Twitter is not Facebook is not Instagram and so on. While there are times to use cross-posting, it also doesn’t help you use each service the way it’s best used. If you want to be really effective, you should try to build each post to fit the network you’re posting it on. Simple posts or posts on different networks are fine for cross posting, but anythingthat takes advantage of a particular platform should be made for it and not just cross posted everywhere.

Take advantage of pictures

Pictures are a perfect example of the above. They’re obviously native to Instagram and Pinterest, with less emphasis placed on the pictures on other sites. You want to emphasize them differently depending on where you’re posting.

They’re also something you really need to take advantage of. Post pictures of units when they go up for rent, showing off where people could move in to. Post pictures of the building, or events going on in the community, or anything else that draws attention. If it’s visually striking, people will be drawn to them and make positive associations with you.

Stay active

No, you don’t need to post every hour on the hour, nor should you put out bad posts just for the sake of posting something. What you should do is make sure that people don’t look at you and wonder why you haven’t posted anything in days, weeks, or months. Whenever you have something worth sharing, from an announcement to new pictures to pictures from an event, put it out there so you don’t get forgotten.

Respond to people who message or mention you

This is part of being active, but a good point to bring up on its own. When someone reaches out to you, acknowledge and interact with you. Sometimes it’s as simple as answering a question or giving a thank you, but just interacting with them makes you look less like the faceless person that owns the building and more like a normal person who interacts with people, makes jokes, and wants to be helpful.

Sell the community as much as the property

We get it - you’re proud of your building and the things in it and want to tell the world about it. That’s part of what tenants want, but not all. They also want to be part of a community or a particular neighborhood, and showing that off is a great draw for potential tenants. But that’s not all you can do.

Go after retention, not just new customers

You want to find new tenants, but what about the ones that already live there? It’s a pain when they leave since you’re back to the "finding new tenants" stage, so what can you do to help with retention?

You can use social media marketing for that as well. Specifically, you’ll want to…

Arrange events and help your tenants interact with each other

You’re managing a community, so use social media to do that. Use it to set up events, or open up something like a Facebook group to act as a forum for tenants to talk to each other. Show pictures of that great event you had last week, with promises of the same or even better coming in a couple of weeks.

Reach out to other property managers

Beyond just tenants, you’ll want to find other property managers and landlords. Do you have a lead for someone who’s looking for a rental but doesn’t quite fit what you have? Offer them a referral to the tenant, and they can do the some for you if they have someone who doesn’t work for them. They can be more than just your competitors - there’s a reason we have the phrase “friendly competition”.

Remember that social engagement isn’t the final goal

A common affliction of the social media marketer is a focus on specific metrics. You want to get as many followers as you can, or maybe you’re counting likes instead, but the affliction is a fixation on those numbers. You’re trying to get those to go up.

But remember why you’re doing this in the first place. You’re trying to rent out your property or help retain the tenants you already have. Remember that likes aren’t leases, but one step along the way. If you spend all your time and energy trying to get more likes or followers, you’re missing the point of marketing in the first place.

Social media marketing can be difficult but is manageable. It’s another outlet to get your property out there and can be a lot more fun than most of the others. With the right amount of effort, you can get in front of a whole other group of potential tenants in a place where they voluntarily spend a lot of time.

Categories: Landlords

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About the Author
The managing editor of Apartment Guide and rent.com, Brian Carberry has more than 10 years’ experience as a content creator and award-winning journalist. Brian’s work has been featured on CNN, Search Engine Land, Randstad and a number of other organizations around the world. In his free time, Brian enjoys sports, cooking and debating the correct pronunciation of “gif.”