Facebook Go-Live: Good and Bad for Multifamily

I can see Facebook Go-Live used as a way to advocate and annihilate your property management brand.

Facebook Go-Live is the next belle of the ball in multifamily. In essence, the functionality gives you the ability to live stream your experiences in the moment. While the idea of live streaming on mobile is not new , it is new for the masses on Facebook.  And I can see so many uses and misuses as it relates to multifamily. Some awesome and some no so awesome.

Facebook Go-Live 2Leasing/Sales – I can see live streaming community tours answering questions, personalizing and customizing along the way.

Residents – I can see John and Stacy broadcasting their watch party or pool party attendance.

Vendor Management – I can see live streaming various issues, problems or successes. Catch the landscaper going the extra mile; edify him or her by broadcasting your praise for a select audience that cares.

Advocates – I can see residents that love their apartment living experience – live streaming something nice and positive about their community.

And, Resident Critic – this is the one that peaks my interest the most. I can see resident live streaming that leaky faucet, leaky ceiling or flooded basement or a bad customer service interaction live and in person. It gives a whole new meaning to the lead in; “Coming to you live from…”

Item of note: The function is only live on my personal page. It’s not yet live on my Apartment Hacker page and I can’t find anything that tells me when it might be.

Nevertheless, it adds a whole new level to reputation monitoring/management.

Your looking forward to watching some Facebook go-live entertainment multifamily maniac,



Apartment Marketing Brass Tacks

“You need the kind of objectivity that makes you forget everything you’ve heard, clear the table, and do a factual study like a scientist would.” – Steve Wozniak

Short and sweet question(s) post today.

Do you ever feel like using social media to marketing apartments is like trying to smash a square peg into a round hole? Do you get the sense that we are trying so hard to make it work just because we just want it to? As opposed to following the advice of Steve W. and clearing the tables for some hard-core study of the real impact it is or is not making?

Have we been clouded by the hint of success we have seen from any one of the many mediums out there? A lease or two from Facebook, a lead from Twitter or a conversation stimulated by a killer resident function and we are quick to tout the success.

Have you found the effort to be worth the result? Do you think the real successes are down the road and over time?

In the end, content is not king – people are. People move business. And, people in relationship talk about businesses they like to do business with. Believe it or not – they usually do that offline.

Is it time to clear the table?

Your brass tacks multifamily maniac,


photo credit: blog mosaic

#apartmentmarketing: Twitter

I was very encouraged to see their use of the medium included push marketing.

The biggest mistake we see companies make when they first hit Twitter is to think about it as a channel to push out information. – Tim O’Reilly & Sarah Milstein – The Twitter Book

For those veterans out there in the media space this seems like a no brain-er but in a world steeped in tradition, it seems like the right thing to do. Take a new medium, insert old practices and principles and voila, we experience success. Except that we don’t.

Apartment Twitter Marketing in Saint Louis

We have Amazing Apts...

Just this week, I followed up some new #STL Twitter handles [new apartment deliveries in the city proper]. I will admit, I was very encouraged to see their use of the medium included push marketing. Special after special, floor plan after floor plan, us – us – us & look at me copy – it all makes me smile inside.

It makes me smile because I don’t think it’s what those who use the space expect or even want to see. In other words, it’s a big turn off and at best it’s ignored and left to rot in a digital dump-ground way off over there in the dark ‘Cloud.’

Not that we at Mills Properties have it all figured out and are knocking it out of the park as a result. That being said, we do seem to experience a ton of participation from the people that work with and for us, the people that they serve in our some fifty properties in the Saint Louis Apartment Market and our coaches and mentors in the multifamily industry. All by using just the opposite approach and all for which we are immensely thankful. We keep experimenting, failing, learning, tweaking, experimenting & thanking those who give us feedback along the way.

Push Marketing on Twitter

Back to the point at hand; is there a time and place where this works? Have we reached that point or are we approaching a time where the masses that frequent Twitter, Facebook and the like expect, heck even desire to see some push marketing for goods and services? 

#apartmentmarketing: Facebook vs. G+

Are you wondering if G+ business pages, when they debut, will be worth the work for your apartment community or property management company?

Here is my take –

He who controleth the algorithm’s to Page Rank is the one for all of thee…

Short answer – yes

That is not to mention, I predict 9/10 of the work is already done via their Places platform

Ignore at your Rank’s risk…


#Apartmentmarketing: Share

People share, read and generally engage more with any type of content when it’s surfaced through friends & people they know and trust! – Malorie Lucich – Facebook Spokesperson

Know and Trust

When it comes to using social media to market apartments, I think we are still in the early miles of a endless endurance pace across the deserts of Africa. Some in the business have caught the fact that business is transacted by great story tellers. And, it is incumbent upon us, on the selling end, to give exceptional reasons for our buying constituents to echo the very stories we tell them when we sell our goods and services.

Park Clayton Apartments

Park Clayton rests just about a mile from Washington University in Saint Louis. The apartment community is but 104 units and boasts zero meaningful amenities outside of location. Even that has it’s challenges as it relates to getting to the university. It sits on the opposite side of a major freeway that disects its way to downtown Saint Louis. Yet we have Likers and we have occupancy.

Our Mills Branded Park Clayton Specific Facebook site boasts just over 300 likes. They are made up of current residents, former residents, industry professionals from in and out of Saint Louis and employees of Mills. Within in the diverse mix of people is a group that hails from the Far East and they love Park Clayton. They love the Luaus, they love the open houses to show off our upgraded units, they love the annual St. Patrick’s Parade that makes its way down the street in front of the building and they love Reb’s dump joke Friday. And they love to share.

Share to Rent

About a year ago Teresa, the Property Manager, used Facebook to give away some goodies and the response was over the top. One resident shared with over 100 of his friends in order to stand out in his quest to receive the prize. He shared the story with his friends in the Far East and they shared back. And, they shared back in a big way. You see, this young man had friends who were in wait to come to the states. More specifically in wait to attend Washington University in Saint Louis. And, you better believe they leased at Park Clayton. All because we told some stories that people could share.

Update – MyNewPlace Implements Facebook Connect: Apartment Search Goes Social

I tried this application out this morning and while it is very cool and I applaud MNP for giving it a shot, it needs a little tweaking. That being said, I am no expert when it comes to understanding the nuances of Facebook so forgive me if I mispeak in any way.

What I love about it is that it was a seamless exercise to post a property to Facebook – one click on the “post to Facebook” button and and I was taken to the page below. I assume if I were not logged into Facebook, I would have been taken to a Facebook connect log in page.

mynewplace-search-apartments-for-rent-and-earn-cash-back_1235071172893Next, a quick click on the publish button sent the post to Facebook. Now here is where it became a little interesting for me. I logged into my FB account and by default to my news feed page. I anticipated seeing the property posting somewhere in the newsfeed but it was not there. I had to click over to my profile page to finally see the posting.

I find that to be a bit cumbersome in the sense that I hardly ever view my own profile page or the profile pages of my friends. In other words to see the properties that my friends were talking about I would have to navigate to each of there individual profile pages. That is very disconnected and not very useful to say the least.

All that being said, I really applaud the effort but would encourage MNP to make a quick adjustment that would allow these postings to move right to the newsfeed on FB – that is if it is possible to do so.

On a side note, MNP has been actively participating in a Twitter conversation this morning about the launch. It’s been fun to watch as it has included everyone from industry consultantss and users to competitors. I really applaud them for being present and open to the feedback. Check it out here: @mynewplace.

Related story: Apartment Search Goes Social…Almost

MyNewPlace Implements Facebook® Connect: Apartment Search Goes Social

SAN FRANCISCO, CA- February 19, 2009 – MyNewPlace™, the Web’s fastest growing apartment and home rentals site, today announced that it has added Facebook® Connect functionality to its Web site – allowing its users to get feedback on prospective apartments, condos and home rentals by posting property information to their Facebook page. MyNewPlace is the first real estate and apartments Web site to implement Facebook Connect, allowing consumers to tap into their social graphs to make more informed decisions about where to live.

“Most people want the opinion of friends, family and roommates before choosing a new place to live. Facebook’s more than 150 million users can now quickly and easily log into MyNewPlace using their Facebook account, post properties they are interested in to their Facebook page and get feedback and advice from the people that are most important to them,” commented Mark Moran, Vice President of Marketing and Business Development for MyNewPlace.  “With Facebook Connect, getting opinions from friends and family is as simple as a click.”

Over 3 million people use MyNewPlace monthly – ranging from recent college grads with several roommates, to families with young children, to corporate relocations. MyNewPlace’s internal research indicates that over one third of its visitors already have a Facebook account, while many others may choose to sign up for a new Facebook account to utilize this functionality.

Facebook users communicate and share information through the social graph, the network of connections and relationships between people. Giving users control over their privacy is paramount on Facebook. With Facebook Connect, users can be assured that the same privacy settings they have set up on Facebook will follow them when they log in to MyNewPlace.com.

About MyNewPlace

MyNewPlace is a nationwide apartment and home rental site where consumers can efficiently search through over six million rentals to find the perfect place to live. The award winning site combines extensive and up-to-date property information, including photos and videos, with advanced mapping and other functionality. The company provides the multifamily marketing professional with the most innovative and cost-effective tools to fill their vacancies.   From MyNewPlace.com: the industry’s fastest growing Internet Listing Service for apartment search, to MyNewSite: the industry’s most cost-effective website solution, MyNewPlace puts the best tools in the hands of owners and managers to help market their apartments for rent. Headquartered in San Francisco, CA, MyNewPlace was founded in 2005 by John Helm, the founding CEO of AllApartments/SpringStreet, which became the number one apartment rental and relocation site on the Internet before its sale to Homestore in 1999. For more information, visit http://www.mynewplace.com.

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Facebook® is a registered trademark of Facebook, Inc.

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