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Leverage PR—from project ideation to sellout
Much like it’s necessary to prepare the land before posting a single stake, savvy residential developers understand the value of teaming up with a Public Relations specialist—right from the start.
Using a three-phase strategy, a PR specialist during Pre-Launch can help home builders establish connections with local community leaders, residents, businesses and other interested parties.
Here, we share our top six reasons to involve PR as early as possible:
1. Pre-PR builds early brand awareness.
First impressions matter. A PR specialist who is experienced in effective brand messaging can help home builders shape public opinion—long before any potential local objections arise. This leads to fewer hassles navigating government red tape and can help influence how a project is treated in media coverage.
2. Pre-PR leads to pre-sales.
Early public relations activity means potential buyers can be reached sooner. This enables the sales team to position pre-sales offers available to those who act before the official grand opening, creating an immediate sense of urgency.
Making sales earlier means you’ll close out sooner. And we all know time is money.
3. Pre-PR gives you time to plan.
It’s always better to act than react. Going into a new residential development project with a personalized PR strategy can help you do just that.
A PR specialist, for starters, will go over your business plan with you in detail to create a comprehensive calendar for major milestones. This will make it easy to plan ahead for the release of the appropriate facts and information at the most strategic times.
4. Pre-PR protects your reputation.
In today’s world of instant news, the time to have an on-call media liaison is before the need is urgent. Having a PR specialist on retainer means you'll be prepared to move quickly if (or when) media or community challenges arise.
In such a case, a PR specialist would be able to field incoming calls, confirm a few facts and issue an initial holding statement. From there, PR would prepare to follow up within a carefully crafted plan until the story dies out.
After all, it’s far more difficult to fight 200 news articles being spread as fact by word of mouth than to address the matter head-on.
5. Pre-PR can facilitate media connections.
First and foremost, you need to make people aware this project is coming. Whether they are local leaders or local residents and business owners, they need to know its reason for existence and how it will fit into their world.
Attracting media coverage is a vital part of any effective overall marketing plan. Even in today’s climate of fake news, editorial pieces build trust paid ads can’t.
Drafting a press release is no guarantee it will be well received. And a poorly executed message can actually damage your brand.
PR specialists, however, are well-positioned to reach out to the media on your behalf. With the proper experience, a media announcement can promote the rationale behind your community. When it includes the right tools, the media will be able to cast your property in its best light.
By the time you're ready for the ribbon-cutting ceremony, the community (and the media) will already be invested and engaged.
6. Pre-internal communications matter, too.
Internal announcements are just as important as those facing the public. From articles written for the company newsletter to memos aimed at upper management, PR can deliver professional information to the appropriate internal stakeholders.
If investors are involved, professional messaging in the earliest stages possible is especially important. From proposal to profit, an experienced PR specialist can assist at every step.
You've (we've) got this!
So, you’ve executed pre-PR like a pro. Proceed to phases two and three...with the benefit of a pre-paved road and a message ready to roll.
By Launch, for example, you’ll already have laid the groundwork. We'll help you build excitement with events and personalized releases to key media members with exclusives, etc., as dictated by your specific needs.
And, once the sales office is open, Post-Launch activities will provide media just the right story angle at the most appropriate time—right up until it’s time to close out.
LAVIDGE is an award-winning agency with 35 years of experience. We’re perfectly sized to tackle your needs in a professional manner, without sacrificing the personal touch often missing with larger agencies. And, when we say no brand is too big or too small, we mean it.
To learn more, give us a call at 480.998.2600 or send email to [email protected].
2018 Southwest Residential Development Marketing Report
This article is a brief abstract of our exclusive study about home buyers and their preferences for advertising and marketing tactics used by new home builders.