Alexis Krisay: Summer Leasing Necessity — Selfie Tours

by Katie Sloan

Engaging your prospects through Selfie Tours is this summer’s hidden gem to ensure that your property stays top of mind and is the first place they think of when making their last minute housing decision. While students may be out of the market for the summer holiday, they are not out of reach.

Tactics like selfie tours and digital tours of your property allow prospects — and their parents — to see the personality of your property through the leasing consultants’ eyes and enable them to feel like they are there walking through the property. These videos can then also be repurposed for social content and boosted on Facebook to target the top infill cities that your property’s prospects live in.

According to a study done by Visual Critical, Generation Z watches twice as many videos on their mobile device compared to any other demographic. In addition, 70 percent of Generation Z watches at least two hours of online videos a day from different social media outlets. Video is the new visual, and incorporating it is a crucial component to your property’s online marketing strategy.

In order to capture and convert your prospects into leases during the summer months, the following digital video strategy should be implemented for optimization:

Creating a Video Tour

Creating a video tour is not easy — there are multiple components to making a future resident feel as though they are taking an in-house tour. The following video tips will ensure that your online video tour will be a spectacular first impression for your student viewers and that they will be excited to lease at your property.

  1. Video Personality — One of the main perks of doing a selfie tour is being able to showcase not only your property’s personality, but also your staff members’ personalities as well, as they are the ones virtually showing prospects around the property. Capturing the vibrant, genuine and fun personality that your leasing consultants have provides your future residents with the home-away-from-home feeling that they are searching for and provides them with a way to still feel like they are there in person touring.
  2. 2.     Video Content — Every good tour video consists of a variety of action shots inside of the model and around the amenities, as well as enthusiastic and descriptive commentary describing each of the features. It is important to provide your student viewers with all of the details that would come with an in person tour; that way they get the full picture and feel confident in the decision to sign online without being there. Walk them through a day in the life at the property and get them excited about the thought of living there!
  3. Facebook Live Integration — Facebook has made it easier than ever to stream in real time with anyone you wish online with the introduction of the Facebook Live initiative. With Facebook being the leading social media outlet, using Facebook Live is the perfect way for you to reach your target audience as you promote your property. However, there needs to be strategic planning and promotion beforehand, that way you capture the largest audience when going live. Promotion should include a branded graphic series counting down to when the Facebook live stream will take place, as well as a unique incentive only available for those that tune in.

Best Practices to Promote

Now that you have created your online video tour, you are ready to spread the love and boost that baby everywhere. When sharing the video, keep in mind the following areas to promote it:

  1. Social Media — Social media is where the students are and where your video needs to be strategically boosted. Publishing your video tour on Facebook, Snapchat, Twitter, YouTube, your property’s blog and more will get your property the attention and leads required to convert into leases.
  2. Marketing Emails — Email follow-up to prospects who aren’t able to tour or even to transfer students outside of the market is a great way to stand out in your email strategy. As you email information about your property, attach a link to your online video tour. That way, they can easily access the video and see firsthand how amazing the property is in a very inviting and engaging way.
  3. Snippet Clips — A great way to mix up the usage of the video tour is to promote little snippets that catch their attention and then link to view the full video. Also, creating animated images to promote the video through the use of the Boomerang app will catch the attention of new viewers and drive new online leases.

An online selfie or video tour is the perfect opportunity for your community to stand out and reach your audience during the summer months. Making a video that your student demographic will be able to relate to and share with their friends and family will allow them to feel more comfortable about signing their lease. This marketing tool will reach a larger targeted audience, drive leads and new leases, and allow your property to stand out from your competitors.

Alexis Krisay is a partner and the vice president of marketing for Serendipit Consulting, a public relations, marketing, branding and event-planning firm with a specialization in the student housing She can be reached directly[email protected] or at (602) 283-5209.

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