"It turns out that two avid Starwood fans created a whole site
where customers can find unbiased reviews of the chain’s properties
uploaded by other customers — the users themselves. The site was
created at the end of 2005 by John H. and John P." [Read More Here]
The article also mentions the fact that Starwood started their own blog some time ago. They use it to provide local information and events in the surrounding area.
Customer created content and blogs have been around for a long time in internet years but have only recently gained a wide acceptance (and that is likely an overstatement) in the business world. That being said, I predict these two trends are front and center in the apartment world in 08.’
We will see the likes of a apartment resident creating a custom site where they invite the reviews of others, not unlike apartmentratings.com. To that I say, Property Management companies think about an open forum on your resident portals. Give them the tools as they will find them elsewhere. It is a scary proposition but one I think would work on many levels but that is for another post.
We will also see the emergence of Apartment Community Blogs. I think you will see this trend from two perspectives, 1. They will be used internally for employee appreciation [See Example Here] and 2. They will be used much like the Starwood example written about above [See Example Here].
On a frigid side note; I am experiencing my first winter in the Midwest. I can think of only one word to describe it: Misery.
Have a great Friday. M