There are some big-picture, strategic parts of property marketing that you need to work on occasionally. Your commercial real estate’s positioning, naming, and visual identity are elements that should only need to be addressed rarely — no more than every decade or so. In contrast, some parts of your property marketing efforts need to be consistently monitored and updated to ensure you’re able to attract new tenants and get leases signed.
It should go without saying that you’ll need up-to-date space drawings if you hope to get your property leased up. If your vacant spaces haven’t changed in a decade or more (really?), you may be able to get away with using your old drawings. Before you rely on those, however, ask yourself who they are designed to help.
The space drawings done for marketing plans should be different than those used for construction work. In our experience, the best marketing plans are designed to be easy-to-read for tenants, not just commercial real estate professionals. This means they have only the most relevant details, such as room sizes, space between columns, and total square feet.
Another way to help get spaces leased fast is to have sample fit plans ready to send out to prospective tenants. Then, when you have a lead, you can quickly send them a plan that shows them how the space can meet their needs. A commercial interior designer can help with sample space planning in advance, based on a few likely tenant scenarios. Think of it as paper-only spec suites. Alternatively, as you develop fit plans for prospective tenants, if they don’t end up signing, you can re-use their fit plan as a way to entice other prospects.
Professional space photography is one of the best ways to help sell your commercial real estate. People have a hard time visualizing what could be, especially if all they have to go on is a space drawing. High quality space photography makes it easy for them. They can get a sense of the space before they visit — and remember it better. After visiting five to ten spaces with their broker, great photos will help your space stand out from the pack. (Hint: your smart phone isn’t going to cut it.)
The best commercial real estate photography gives the viewer a sense of the space. This typically means wide shots, so viewers can see how elements relate to one another. Wider angles also help spaces look larger, which is almost always a plus in real estate. Likewise, you’ll want to have elements in your photos — furniture, doors, or equipment — that can give the space a sense of scale. This goes a long way to helping the viewer picture themselves in the space.
Your photos should also be professionally edited. While professional photographers can get high-quality results directly out of the camera, your photos will be even better after a touch-up. From color correction to lens profiles to perspective adjustments (and more!), the right editing makes all the difference. See the before-and-after samples below for a better sense of the power of editing.
This before-and-after sample shows the importance of professional photo editing for your property marketing.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
With more than 80% of buyers checking the web first when looking for commercial real estate, this is a part of your marketing strategy you can’t afford to overlook. When prospective tenants search online for their next space, does your listing show up? And is it high enough in the search results to get clicked?
Search engine optimization isn’t magic or brain surgery, but it does require deliberate effort. To get the results that will bring more tenants to your site, you have to know what they’re searching for. What keywords do prospects use when searching for a space like yours? If they’re looking for tech office space in the North Loop, you’ll want to use those terms in your description. Is there a popular amenity nearby? Include its specific name to catch those searches. The key here is to think about SEO from your prospects perspective and use the words they’re using.
Whenever possible, you’ll also want to link those keywords back to your space listing. So if you have a page on your site where you describe your services, for example, you can use it to link to your biggest listings. Search engines will follow those links and identify the listing pages with your keywords. Don’t have a place to put those links? It might be time for a new commercial real estate website design.
Remember as well that search engines like Google reward fresh content. You can keep your listings fresh with new photos, space plans, and targeted descriptions. This kind of ongoing maintenance will help ensure your listings are at the top of Google’s results.
Looking to bring your property marketing up-to-date and driving new leases? Contact us today.