10 Marketing Plan Elements to Help Sell or Rent Your Property

Whether you have a marketing plan in place or are looking to create one, understanding its elements is key in helping sell or rent your property.

A marketing plan is a tool for organizing the planning, pricing, and promotion of a product. Creating a marketing plan is a fundamental exercise for every business. Your building is a business. Its marketing plan should identify the target market to which you are going to sell space, the price, how you are going to make the building unique, and methods for communicating with those target markets.

Writing the marketing plan requires research and analysis. The steps involved in preparing a strategic marketing plan include:
  1. Analyzing the owner’s position
  2. Assessing the property
  3. Performing a market analysis
  4. Formulating goals and a strategy
Once the plan is established, you need to prepare a budget to fund it and pick people to execute it. In large property management organizations, entire departments may be devoted to marketing. If you do not have the luxury of a marketing department and are short on time, the following items are the basics for preparing a marketing plan:
  • Financial goals of the building: This information comes from discussions with the ownership.
  • Building analysis: This is a survey of the building—its classification, amenities, features, financing, reputation, and construction.
  • Analysis of competing buildings: An analysis of the buildings in your micro-market that are competing for tenants.
  • Macro- / Micro-market analysis: Understanding absorption, vacancy rates, real estate trends, and new developments.
  • Economic and business forecasts: Assessing business trends, interest rates, employment, and other data that indicate the economic health of your area’s business market and are a factor in the leasing program.
  • Target market for tenant prospects: What is the profile of the most likely candidates for leasing space in your building? This will be determined by your floor plate, rent, and tenant mix.
  • The amount of space to be leased over a given time: Start with all the vacant space currently available, then make a chart showing which leases will be coming up for renewal and whether you want to renew them. You can estimate how long it will take to fill the space after learning how long it took to lease space in competing buildings.
  • A plan to actively promote the building to probable tenants: Communicating information about the building is a function of advertising and public relations.
  • Detailed listing of who is assigned to execute the plan: This list should specifically cover the responsibilities and goals of all the personnel involved; for example, leasing agent A will make a designated number of calls per week.

Creating a Marketing Budget

Here are some typical costs to include:
  • Hiring a market researcher or research firm to perform the analysis, and the interaction point analysis or the cost of staff time to perform these tasks.
  • Entertainment costs, travel, meals, luncheons, golf outings, etc., for prospective tenants, key brokers, and others who can help you obtain tenants.
  • Writing, illustrating, designing, and printing literature, brochures, and promotional materials. Costs escalate proportionately as more colors and types of paper stock are used.
  • Hiring an advertising agency to design and produce an ad campaign. The agency should also give you a media analysis and recommendations where the ad should run to reach your target market.
  • Buying ad space in various media platforms. If you are using an ad agency, this cost will be included in the agency’s overall cost
  • Community relations program that is designed to improve the building’s recognition as a cornerstone of the community. Tradeshow booths and any other types of promotional activities that will give the building greater exposure to its target market.
  • Following up leads generated from marketing efforts.

Marketing Budget Time Lines

When you are developing budgets, you should also be creating time lines, which provide a guide for implementing the project that the budget is funding. A time line is simply a project road map.

For example, if you are planning a direct mailing to independent brokers, here are the steps:
  1. Prepare the mailing list and enter it into the mail merge database of a word processing program.
  2. Draft a letter, add any pictures or graphics, and proof a copy.
  3. Print each customized letter using the mail merge database.
  4. Print envelopes or labels.
This article is adapted from BOMI International’s course Leasing and Marketing for Property Managers, part of the RPA® designation program. More information regarding this course or the High-Performance certificate courses is available by calling 1.800.235.2664. Visit BOMI International’s website, www.bomi.org.


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