Grand Opening – Home Builder Edition
So you are bringing a new community to market. How do you ensure it is going to be a success? It starts at the very beginning and in hiring the right team to oversee and ensure your success. There are many things that need to be done and if you are an expert in home building, you might not be an expert in marketing your community to the right audience, for the right price and with the right designs.
NOTE: Before we formally begin, I feel like when I post a blog about a subject like Grand Opening strategies, for instance, it is because I am having similar conversations on a daily/weekly/monthly basis with my clients. There is so much to discuss and write about so I have tried to touch on a few of the major subjects. I hope this information starts to lead you toward creating a great neighborhood and successful grand opening!
- Market Studies
Do your homework and your market research. There is no crying in baseball and there is no guessing in real estate. Is a professional gathering the information about surrounding communities, pricing, features, and square footage? Doing this market study will ensure a home builder’s success. If you have confidence in your grand opening prices you will never have to worry about “dropping the price” because you will have done the leg work to create value for your customers from the beginning. Update the information just prior to your Grand Opening.
- Picking your target market & creating personas
Knowing your audience affects everything. From the name of the project, the logo design, the lifestyle photos and the architectural details, speaking to your audience tastes is paramount. Create personas to insure success and creating common brand & theme throughout your selling campaign, which is specifically targeted to your audience.
- Setting up a winning team
You are only as good as the people you surround yourself with. In the most successful and high profile neighborhoods, it all starts with a team meeting. The developer lays out his vision; your marketing team will then review all community details, including the architectural plans, site plan, landscaping, community name, target marketing, project timing and sales goals. Plan to plan.
- Trends in Advertising & The Web
This is a game changer. The internet is the most profound, dynamic and increasingly important marketing tools any company can invest in. A well designed and proper website design can be a company’s best and most effective ways to capture leads and gain new customers.
Newspapers now mix internet and print media in their proposals. Hire an expert to manage your web marketing to insure customer find you!
- On -site marketing
People still want to touch and feel. It makes for a much easier sell when you have model homes, a design studio, a sales center and an emotional and interactive on-site presentation. The on-site presentation needs to be well thought out from the entry to the front door of the sales center. The right sales person and a hint of helpful hospitality will warm your prospects in no time. Your goal is to train your sales team to bond emotionally with your prospects to gain trust – Then follow up, follow up, follow up!
- Customization Trends
People want what they want. The trend of All inclusive (Everything’s included) features or selling in packages has remained because it is easy for the customer. Savvy home builders are back in their design studios as we speak and re-organizing them to maximize each potential home sale and to give their buyers an authentic “experience”. They will also use this experience as a marketing tool to attract and engage new customers. Please remember sometimes “too many choices” can potentially confuse and turn off buyers when they are left on their own..
Measure Everything. Everything is measurable! Do more of what works and less of what does not. It amazes me how many much information you can decipher while reading an analytics report. Think of your website as a living/breathing thing. Think of Google as a monster who eats NEW information… feed the monster and track everything you do. Be socially engaged and surround yourself with your 6 best friends: Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, You Tube and inbound marketing. A Well rounded and well connected social website is paramount to climbing Google’s ranking ladder to page 1.
- Previewing Opening vs. Grand Opening
I am seeing a clear trend on holding back. You only get one chance at a first impression so grand opening when you are ready is the only way I recommend opening. When your models are properly merchandised, the landscape is complete and the brochures are ready, then it is time to preview. The strategy is to allow your most interested buyers preview, select and buy for a one-two week period before the public grand opening. This will also create urgency. When you have your public Grand Opening, you will also have had time to work out and address any bugs you might have found during the preview opening period.
For more information on preparing your community for a grand opening and strategy, visit www.johnrodandco.com or call today for a consultation about your project.