Resident Retention: 3 Tips for Turning On-Site Gratitude into Positive Online Reviews
Want to improve resident retention at your apartment community? Maximize the “good” that’s happening every day.
Want to drown out those negative online reviews and comments? Start by asking your satisfied residents to stand up and be heard.
Here are three simple ways a property management team can improve resident retention by generating on-site gratitude for positive online reviews.
Step 1: Revisit and Respond to Older Online Reviews from Residents
Respond to every review that has ever been posted to your ratings page. Even those that were left for the previous manager or property management company.
Sample response for old online reviews:
Although this comment was posted x years ago, I feel everyone who takes the time to leave their feedback deserves a response. I’m sorry that your experience was less than stellar at community name and I can assure you that wonderful changes have taken place to improve the level of service and resident satisfaction. If you are currently a resident, I invite you to meet with me directly if you still have any concerns. If you are no longer a resident, I encourage you to stop by community name for a visit. We’d love to show you the changes in person.
Step 2: Give Residents Something Good to Talk About Your Apartment Community
Residents have two reasons to post online reviews about your community or property management staff: 1. They have a problem/issue/concern that has gone unresolved; and 2. They want to sing your praises. So, is living at your community worry-free or worrisome? Is there a common thread among the reviews (i.e., outstanding maintenance issues, property management staff is unresponsive, etc.).
Listen to what these online reviews are saying and make the necessary changes. Sometimes, the changes are as simple as putting a new procedure in place (for example: setting a deadline for returning calls and emails). More often than not, these changes have no financial impact on your community budget.
Step 3: Ask Residents for Online Apartment Reviews
Did you just get a “thank you” from a resident? When a compliment is received, acknowledge the feedback and let the resident know you plan on sharing it with the rest of the team. Then, take it a step further and ask the resident if they would be willing to repeat their great experience on your ratings and review page.
Provide the resident with the direct link to your online reviews page (either by email or a pre-printed card). Happy residents will gladly post a positive review. All you need to do is ask!
Another option – if you have a business center – is to bookmark your ratings page on one of the computers. Encourage your residents to post their comments before they have a chance to leave your property management office.
Remember, what happens on site could end up online. Make sure you give residents something good to talk about.