Apartment Tours: Virtual Reality or 360 Photography?

Len Kody

Often your dream home is exactly that—a dream, somewhere beyond time and space. The apartment renters journey begins with an intent-laden Google search, perhaps at the same time when the ground is being broken on the towering highrise that will one day be their home. Multifamily developers feel the pressure to lease-up apartments that haven’t even been built yet, oftentimes to renters moving in from another state across the country.

Two seekers searching for solutions. That’s where GTMA comes in.

High-quality photography is a necessity for multifamily, both for lease-ups and stabilized properties. But what if the building isn’t built yet? Or what if your leads must journey from far, far away to behold your awesome amenities? Time and space are two not-so-easy challenges to overcome. We have two solutions at GTMA, each with its own strengths relative to the other: Virtual Reality and 360 Photography.

Let’s see how these two marketing methods stack up.

No Building? No Problem!

The future of real estate isn’t on the ground, but in the cloud! It’s a common mantra around the GTMA offices, especially when we’re communicating with our partners in multifamily about the job we do for them: “You build and manage the real building, while we manage your virtual real estate online.”

Perhaps we’ve never meant it so literally as we do with Futriciti—we build without ever breaking ground!

Futriciti is an immersive, virtual reality app that uses video game engines to take you on a tour of an apartment before it’s even been built. “We can show future residents an exact floor plan,” boasts Barrie Buckner, GTMA’s Director of Partnerships. “The 3D renderings are fully modeled and even have the option to show the exact view from the apartment home they will live in.”

For 12 to 16 months before the doors of the new apartment building officially open, leads encounter Google Analytics pins in the virtual building. There’s also a contact form in the experience so building owners can grow an email list which can also be used in social advertising efforts.

If You Got It, Flaunt It.

The millennial professional interested in renting a luxury apartment in an urban hub is usually someone relocating from yet another urban hub—or their college dorm room. GTMA’s 360 Experience is not only for lease-ups; it’s ideal for stabilized properties interested in targeting this highly-desirable, cosmopolitan demographic.

The 360 Experience uses existing photography to recreate an apartment community’s most stunning sights and amenities. As far afield as your leads may be, they’ll be able to experience the apartment home before committing to a one year (or more) lease.

From VR to 360, GTMA Has You Covered!

GTMA is continuing to develop the 360 Experience so that it will work in goggles like VR. Until the tech is perfected, however, there’s no matching the immersive quality of virtual reality. Still, the world you see in VR is made of CGI renderings rather than actual photography.

The 360 Experience allows for photos, video and custom copy to highlight selling points of the apartment home. It’s not as flexible as VR which GTMA uses to track lead generation data to further refine our campaigns.

Winning the attention of apartment-seekers is what we do best here at GTMA. And, depending on the specific situation, we have proven tools for every stage from development to stabilization.

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Len Kody

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