Paid media continues to be one of the most effective ways to capture the attention of your apartment community’s online audience. However, these types of campaigns require a reasonable budget and it becomes increasingly difficult to compete with larger organizations that have higher budgets for the same offering as yours in the same area as yours. Fortunately, the emergence of Geotargeting allows you to capture your most relevant, local audience at fractions of the cost.
Geotargeting works by giving you the capability to target your ads to those physically in a specific location, or set of locations. This can mean anyone in a particular state, a city, a zip code, or even a small radius around a particular address. The strategy is always the same – choose your target by the areas where your target demographic is located at.
Before the internet, your physical location meant everything to where you advertised. Your location heavily dictated where you would include print ads and billboards. For instance, you wouldn’t place a billboard about your community on the other side of the state. Instead, you would place a billboard nearby on the highway going towards your community. Basically, advertising your apartment to anyone in the country makes about as much sense as advertising your apartment in an issue of USA Today.
That is why if you’re paying by the number of eyes that see the ad (such as CPM), then you should make the most use out of which eyes see that ad and where your ad dollars go. Which is why we like to look locally. Going wider than that can be wasteful.
Geotargeting for Apartments
When creating a new search campaign for an apartment community, start with specific, relevant keywords aimed at capturing those searching at the national or regional level. These can be branded keywords such as the apartment community’s name or hyperlocal identifiers that only capture extremely relevant searchers. That means that you won’t be wasting the budget on general search queries since your keyword targeting is specific enough.
After that, you’ll want to capture your search traffic from local searchers such as those actually in the city or those located in specific zip codes that are searching general keywords. These general keywords can be anything from “new apartments” to “apartments near me”. The goal is to capture those already living in town but want to experience a new living experience, hopefully at your apartment community.
Ready for the real fun? That’s when you can take your campaign to the street-level and target ads within a small radius. You can target out those searching for similarly broad terms (ie: “apartments near me”, “apartments near the train station”, “apartments with washer and dryer”) and are located close to your apartment. These targeted locations can be anything from the commuters at a nearby metro station, anyone currently on-campus at the local university, or those located at an actual competing apartment community!
Think of all of this like a funnel. As you move down the funnel, you get more and more specific on the audience you want to reach based on location. The wider your audience, the narrower your keyword targeting needs to be.
Here are some of the ways in which you benefit directly by utilizing Geotargeting for your apartment’s PPC campaigns:
More possibilities with a limited budget. Potential highly relevant leads won’t fall through the cracks when you’re working with a limited budget as the campaign is highly targeted to a small geographic area. Your budget will go a longer way.
More control over your hyperlocal area. Whether you’re targeting an audience at a competitor down the street, users at the metro station a block away, or want to target out just those driving by your property, you can decide what “pins” to utilize for this campaign. We will target and optimize these areas based on results.
More leads at a lower cost. For the communities we’ve managed at GTMA, we’ve found a dramatically lower average cost to obtain a lead for campaigns that run very specific Geotargeting.
More purposeful leads. These leads are going to come from potential residents that are in a highly targeted area typing in highly relevant keywords. When they fill out lead information, they will be immediately engaged and ready to move down the sales funnel to tour the property and sign that lease.
These campaigns get pretty technical, which is why GTMA is here to help with your PPC campaigns. And we’re always here to answer any questions you may have. Feel free to drop them in the comments below or hit us up on Twitter at @GoToMyApartment.