Best Practices for Using Technology in Multifamily Marketing

Pinnacle's Jennifer Staciokas discusses some of the latest technology initiatives for multifamily.
Jennifer Staciokas

When it comes to digital marketing trends for the multifamily industry, there’s always lots of chatter. Jennifer Staciokas is an executive who could be considered a consensus-builder on the subject.

One year ago, she moved to Pinnacle from Lincoln Property Company, where she had worked for 15 years. With experience at two major industry players, her opinion holds great weight when it comes to what strategies are most effective in the digital marketing space. As Pinnacle’s senior vice president for marketing and training, she’s moved the company forward with best practices and technology initiatives.

MHN had to chance to catch up with Staciokas after the recent NAA convention in Las Vegas.

MHN: Recently at NAA, you weighed in on digital marketing strategies for multifamily. Which digital strategy has had the most significant return on investment for you at Pinnacle over the last year, and how did you measure its results?

Staciokas: Honestly, we view our digital strategy as a holistic approach that includes paid search, organic search, display advertising, social media and reputation management. In the last year, we solidified our approach and chose our strategic partners to put this plan into action.

MHN: To what extent do you think it’s necessary to have individual marketing strategies targeted toward unique demographic groups?

Staciokas: There is a lot of talk about having marketing plans targeted at the different generations, but I honestly feel like there is so much crossover between the wants and needs of Baby Boomers, Gen X and Gen Y. It is important to not silo your efforts on any one generational or demographic group at the risk of alienating the others.

MHN: Tell us about any new technologies and/or workflow approaches that your team is testing in 2015.

Staciokas: We are constantly testing new products and services available in the market, but currently focusing on Google certified photography/virtual tours, a centralized dashboard to claim directory listings, geo-fencing, paid search via social media and various services to engage the five senses of our residents as they visit our communities for a lasting impression.

MHN: Pinnacle places a heavy corporate focus on customer satisfaction. How does your team help execute that strategy with digital tools?

Staciokas: In order to measure customer satisfaction, we have implemented a five-touchpoint survey program that gives us feedback during the entire life cycle of a resident. By receiving this constant data stream of information, we are able to quickly take action based on the feedback we receive from our residents. We also have a reputation management dashboard in place that consolidates all reviews, allows our team to spot trends and respond immediately to their feedback.

MHN: With communities under management across the U.S., what’s your approach to keep up with regional trends in marketing and leasing, and can you provide an example of how that helped your site-based teams succeed?

Staciokas: Our marketing toolkit is comprised of all of the marketing products/services that we endorse from a national level. Our Regional Marketing Directors analyze each community individually and decide which products/services to recommend based on their location, traffic needs and budget.

MHN: You attend many major industry conferences each year. Any new approach or tool that you’ve seen this year so far that you have been particularly impressed by, and why?

Staciokas: Social media has been all of the buzz for many years now, but the trends seem to be transitioning to using social for paid search instead of just brand awareness, SEO and resident communication. We are also experimenting with geo-fencing at certain communities to see the impact of precision targeting in terms of potential residents from a hyper-local approach.