A brand is a complex entity in the commercial property industry. You could differentiate a few approaches to creating a brand in our sector, such as a corporate brand or one which is conceived for a specific project or building.
A corporate brand as an external and internal identity of your organisation shapes all your outgoing communications and influences how you’re perceived by your stakeholders. Property marketing, on the other hand, is often overlooked from the brand perspective, especially when completely outsourced to third parties.
The relationship between a corporate brand and an identity created for individual building can, at times, be non-existent.
There is underestimated value in connecting the dots and aligning both forms of marketing activities.
Why consistency matters
We live in a world of total transparency. Almost all aspects of your business can be scrutinised online. With Twitter raving with customer complaints and Facebook being used for political propaganda, it’s hard to deny the power of those channels in shaping people’s perception.
It would be counterintuitive not to align your property marketing with your brand identity. To external stakeholders, your corporate marketing and your property marketing are one and the same. They do not distinguish one from the other.
An example illustrating this way of perceiving a brand well is Amazon as a marketplace. Amazon, as you know, sells their own products and acts as a retailer for other brands. However, Amazon is a marketplace where other retailers sell their product too. In the perception of most of the customer, there is no difference between those two. Therefore, Amazon puts significant resources towards working with sellers to ensure the service is aligned with the level of Amazon’s own customer service. The company goes as far as offering services like ‘fulfilled by Amazon’ to sellers to ensure smooth and timely delivery.
Translating this example into the commercial property context, a landlord’s brand is perceived through marketing outputs produced by their commercial agents. A close alignment of a landlord’s own activities with their agent’s activities could prove fruitful in reinforcing desired client experience from the reputation perspective. Any inconsistency with the brand image will potentially reflect negatively on the landlord’s brand.
New technology offers tools for seamless collaboration between landlord brands and their agents. One of those tools is Realbase - an all-in-one marketing, reporting and contact management platform designed for commercial property.
Aligning your partner’s asset creation and distribution with your brand
From the commercial property agent’s standpoint, property marketing starts with creating marketing assets. These assets mostly include a digital and printed brochure, an email campaign and potentially a website showcasing the building.
Ensuring those materials reflect the identity of the building as well as embody the identity of your corporate brand is key to keeping your brand image consistent. Your marketing assets should be subliminally associated with your brand.
Do your social channels reflect your brand personality?
Social media for corporate communication is a hard nut to crack. Often it’s tricky to find an angle to go with when it comes to content creation and identity of your channels. A natural way of putting your social media to work is to use it as an extension of your current distribution channels. For instance, your LinkedIn and Twitter channels can be used to post reports, survey results or inspiring quotes from your leadership team. More valuable pieces of content can be put behind the gate to start building a contact list. Some of those could be your potential tenants.
As the real estate industry is highly visual, Instagram seems like a perfect fit for your development updates, sharing new plans and mockups of upcoming projects. You can also use it to show some love to your existing tenants by showcasing their business or amplifying their reach. They will only thank you for it.
From a social media perspective, working with partners (in this case, commercial property agents) gives you an extra benefit. For example, sharing each others social content extends the reach of the marketing material and brand awareness even further. It’s a win-win situation.
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