One of the best ways to build your business is to invest time in building your neighborhood. While this may seem counteractive, creating a community will help to increase the value of your neighborhood, therefore increasing the value of your property as well. Supporting local businesses will prevent storefront vacancies, which are often a detractor to apartment seekers (and may send your current residents packing). Check out these cross-promotion campaigns aimed to keep your businesses booming and your tenants and customers content:
- Social Media Speaks
Social media is often the most effective and relatable means of promotion today. Utilize technology by mentioning local partners in your posts, “checking in” online to their businesses on location-based apps, and sharing relevant photos of their products or services. Ask your affiliates to share your post on their page, and you’ll both be promoting each other while promoting yourselves for a win-win situation (and best of all – it’s free!).
- Elevate with Events
Partnering with local businesses for an event is a great way to increase exposure for all parties involved. Hosting the event will be in your best interest, as it will get new people on your property and will give your building time to shine. Consider a charity- or community-focused event, which will show attendees that you care about, and invest in, your community. Collect donated prizes or services from the local partners involved, such as catering, gift cards to their stores, or gift baskets full of goodies. This will increase both exposure for the businesses, and incentives for the attendees. Also, be sure to clean and prep your property prior to the event to ensure you make a great first impression!
Additionally, with any public event, prioritize having security personnel on staff to supervise, ensuring all guests stay within the designated event area. You may also want to check guests in and out with a valid ID, so that you know exactly who is on your property at all times.
- Maximize Promotional Materials
Tangible promotional materials and items still prove to be powerful when it comes to boosting business. Perhaps join forces with select local partners to create a business-based map of the neighborhood. On the front, feature an illustration of the surrounding area, marking the businesses involved. On the back, offer coupons, promotions or information regarding your products and services. It will be in everyone’s best interest to display and distribute the materials, promoting all parties involved. Alternatively, you may consider the traditional route of brochures and coupons to exchange and display in each other’s location. Enlist your concierge staff to distribute any new marketing collateral to your residents as they pass through your lobby, or create a “welcome bag” for new tenants full of local guides and coupons to help them familiarize with the neighborhood.
Examples of potential partnership opportunities, utilizing these strategies:
- Social Media: Offer your property as a backdrop for a product photoshoot, and you can both use the photos as promotional images for your businesses. Be sure to credit each other when you post!
- Event: Host a monthly ‘pop-up shop’ in your lobby, featuring discounted, ready-to-go bouquets. This will offer your residents a great convenience, as well as attract outsiders who will see the thoughtful services your property provides!
- Promotion: Ask the florist to provide a weekly bouquet for your front desk with a display card featuring their information. This will liven up your lobby, while keeping their business fresh in your residents’ minds.
- Social Media: Post a photo featuring a branded beverage cup from the shop with one of your amenities in the background. For instance, posting a picture of an iced coffee with your property’s pool in the background will promote your building while subliminally making your viewers crave a coffee – and they’ll know exactly where to get some! In return, ask your partner to share your post on their page, tagging your property as the location. This will associate your building with their viewers’ favorite coffee shop!
- Event: Host an open house featuring coffee and/or pastries from the shop.
- Promotion: Secure a special on their menu with your property name as the product name (i.e. the Smith Towers Latte) in exchange for displaying their menu in your lobby.
Pet Store (for Pet-Friendly Properties)
- Social Media: Feature a photo of an adorable adopted pet who resides at your building. In return, ask the pet shop to share the post and story on their page, mentioning the great home the pet has!
- Event: Host a public outdoor pet adoption event, which will offer more room for more animals to be showcased (as well as minimize the mess your janitorial staff will have afterwards)!
- Promotion: Offer your residents a discounted “pet fee” if they adopt from this specific store. In return, ask the pet shop to post and promote that you’re a local, pet-friendly building, and mention the discount as well.
If you’re unsure about whether or not these reciprocal referral tactics will work for you, consider a test run with one local business. For instance, try it for one small event, one week of social media post exchanges, or one limited run of shared marketing collateral. Committing to small increments of time or materials will be a good test to see which cross-promotions do and don’t work for you, and prevent you from getting stuck in a partnership that isn’t mutually beneficial.
Do you have any personal tips to share when it comes to cross-promoting with local businesses? Please comment below; we encourage and value your opinion!
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This article was written by Jillian O’Connor (Marketing Communications Manager) for Planned Companies, the industry leaders in janitorial, maintenance, concierge/front desk, and security services in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic. Catering to both residential and commercial properties, we proudly provide services throughout New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, and Washington DC. For more information about our services, please visit our website at www.plannedcompanies.com or call us at 888-706-8600.