Creative Building Events a Hit with Property Managers

beach_selfie_stationEservus has had a very busy summer organizing building events and barbecues for our property manager clients. With more and more property managers looking for ways to engage their tenants, many have turned to building events to create a stronger relationship with their community and generate tenant goodwill. One of the challenges that property managers face is coming up with events that are fresh and original – events that will grab the tenants’ attention – and that’s where Eservus has been focusing our attention. Here are a few examples of how Eservus put a new spin on our PM clients’ events over the past year.

THE GREENEST OF PENCILS

One of the more innovative products we sourced for a PM client’s Earth Day event was a pencil that you could plant in soil and would actually take root and sprout! The pencils come in a number of varieties, including basil, forget me not and thyme. We also arranged for one of our clients a “living wall,” an actual plant wall that we set up in the building lobby. Talk about going green!

COOKIN’ ON THE BEACH

Tenant barbecues are one of the most popular events that property managers organize, and when Eservus was asked by one of our PM clients to take care of their annual BBQ, we tried to bring a unique spin to the event by organizing a beach-party theme. Our Tenant Engagement Manager, Kristin Mackey-Bernatt, went all out on the beach theme and even went to The Home Depot to pick up giant bags of sand for the tropical selfie station!

WHAT WOULD YOU DO FOR A COOKIE?

How do you motivate your tenants to participate in evacuation drills? One of our PM clients decided to use bribery and offered delicious cookies customized with their logo to everyone who made the trek down the stairs and outside the building during the drill. Not only did the tenants welcome the tasty treat, but the property manager built both their brand and tenant goodwill.

As more property managers look for innovative ways to engage their tenants, building occupants can expect to see events that have a fresh and unique spin on the tried and true. What’s the most creative idea for a tenant event that you’ve seen in the past year? Leave a reply below … I’d love to hear about it!

Kirk Layton is the president of Eservus, an online corporate concierge company servicing over 30 property management clients in Toronto, Calgary, Vancouver, Boston and Houston.

What’s Your New-Tenant Welcome Strategy?

welcome_matOne of the ways that my company, Eservus, introduces ourselves to new tenants in the office buildings we serve is to hold a prize draw for the company’s employees. We ask the employees to create a free member account with Eservus and their name goes into a draw to win, say, one of ten pairs of admit-one movie passes. It’s a fun way to engage the new employees and welcome them to the building. So that got me thinking … how can property managers welcome new tenants to the building?

Let’s face it … often the key to starting a strong relationship is making a strong first impression. This holds true in personal as well as professional relationships. The new-tenant move-in is a great time for property managers to kick off the landlord/tenant relationship on the right foot. So here are a few ideas that can help you make a strong first impression on that all-important move-in day:

The Basics: 

  • Send a bouquet of flowers, a gift basket or other goodie with a card welcoming the tenant to the building. Better yet, hand-deliver it during the first few days of move-in so you can introduce yourself (if you haven’t already of course!)
  • If you’re not able to make it in person, leave the flowers or gift basket along with the card in front of the suite’s door on a residential-style welcome mat. It’s a little kitschy for sure but it will definitely be remembered!
  • Put together a tenant welcome kit with information on the building, coupons from retailers and gift cards from nearby restaurants. Sometimes retailers and restaurants give away free gift cards or coupons in exchange for promoting them to your tenants. To add some pizazz, have the folder designed to look like a little welcome mat. (Love those welcome mats!)

Upping the Ante:

  • Show up on moving day with enough pizza and soft drinks to feed the entire team. If you can’t make it in person, have the pizzas delivered.
  • Deliver a few dozen cookies or cupcakes customized with a welcome message and the company’s logo. (It’s not as hard as it sounds … Eservus works with companies who do a great job on custom confections!)
  • Buy a large tool kit and fill it with move-in must-haves (paper towels, window cleaner, tape, small tools, etc.). Wrap it with a large bow and include a nice card welcoming the tenant to the building.

A well-executed welcome strategy doesn’t have to break the bank, and can set the stage for a great landlord/tenant relationship!

Have you done something especially creative or unique to welcome your new tenants to the building? If so, I’d love to hear about it, so please click on the “Leave a Reply” link at the bottom of the page and post a comment.

Kirk Layton is the president of Eservus, an online corporate concierge company servicing over 30 property management companies in Toronto, Calgary, Vancouver and Boston.

Buyer Personas Help Target Marketing Efforts

A few years ago I read a book called The New Rules of Marketing and PR by David Meerman Scott. (If you haven’t read it, it’s a great book and I highly recommend it.) One of my favourite sections of the book talked about buyer personas. According to the author, a buyer persona is “a representative of a type of buyer that you have identified as having a specific interest in your organization or product or having a market problem that your product or service solves.” Companies can create a variety of buyer personas to help them craft their marketing messages to address the unique needs of each persona.

Meerman Scott points out that marketers for the major U.S. political parties have been using buyer personas for years. For example, one buyer persona might be called “NASCAR Dads” (rural, working-class males, many of whom are NASCAR fans) or Security Moms (mothers who are worried about terrorism and concerned about security). Says Meerman Scott, “by segmenting millions of voters into distinct buyer personas, candidates build marketing campaigns and PR programs that appealed specifically to each.”

That made a lot of sense to me, so I set out to create a set of buyer personas for my company, Eservus, which provides online concierge services to tenants in office buildings. By brainstorming and strategizing with my team, and after carefully analyzing our member survey and purchase data, we came up with five distinct buyer personas:

sports_fan_samSports Fan Sam: Does a clear image of Sam pop into your head? Of course! Sam is, obviously, into a variety of sports, so when we target Sam, we make sure that he knows about all the great Raptors, Blue Jays, Stampeders and Red Sox tickets we have available … at a discount.

 

soccer_mom

Soccer Mom Sally: You can tell if your buyer persona is effective if it creates a strong image in your mind of a particular personality type, and Soccer Mom Sally certainly does that. Sally lives in the suburbs, is married and has young children at home. We think Sally is looking for savings and convenience, so when we target her in our e-mail promotions, we make sure that we highlight these attributes in our communications.

footloose_fiona

Footloose Fiona: Fiona is young, single and enjoys going out with her friends. For Fiona, we promote a variety of lifestyle products that better meet her needs, including restaurants, fitness and social engagement.

cultured_chrisCultured Chris: Chris is a little older, can me male or female, whose kids are no longer living at home. Chris enjoys the finer things in life, and loves going to the ballet, the symphony or perhaps the opera. We target Chris with messaging that appeals to their more “sophisticated” sensibilities.

corporate_chris_1Corporate Casey: Casey makes purchases on behalf of his or her company, and so is not necessarily looking for the best deal, but definitely needs to find the right product quickly and easily … Casey doesn’t have any time to waste! For Casey, we focus our messaging on the ease of use of the Eservus online platform and timely response to questions and requests.

Does anyone else use buyer personas to segment their customers? If so, I’d love to hear about them!

Kirk Layton is the president of Eservus, an online corporate concierge company servicing over 30 property management companies in Toronto, Calgary, Vancouver and Boston.