Congratulations, you’ve made it to the next level of rental property ownership! As you step into this new reality, you are going to be faced with many new challenges. One of the most important ones will center around how to manage your time and your staff resources. All too often, property owners find they end up spending all of their time attending to every detail of their business themselves.
Luckily, you’re not alone. Most business owners have to face this dilemma sooner or later as they become more successful. Michael Gerber’s classic business book “The E-Myth” expressed this brilliantly: “how much time should I be working IN the business vs. working ON the business?”
Outsource expert Chris Ducker believes the first step every business owner needs to take to achieve freedom is to complete three lists:
- Jobs that you hate to do.
- Jobs you can’t do.
- Jobs you shouldn’t be doing.
The goal is to hire cost-effective help to do these jobs so that you can focus on what you really should be doing as a business owner. A great exercise is to have your staff do this as well, especially if you use employee scorecards.
For property owners, one of the jobs that always ends up on one or more of these lists is managing online property listings.
Do I Really Need Help?
If you own one or two rental units, using a property management company to handle your online listings may be a consideration, but not always necessary. But once your volume increases, getting a steady flow of quality tenants becomes critical.
Competition for good tenants is fierce. A quick google search for “seattle apartment rentals” brought up 5,380 competing websites with over 4,100 available apartments showing on one of the sites. Standing out from the crowd is important to your bottom line.
Benefits of Hiring an Expert
According to Chuck Cohn from Forbes, “One of the best ways to decide whether or not to outsource a task is to perform a cost/time calculation.”
But many people don’t fully consider the “expert factor.” An expert obtains results that are superior to those obtained by the majority of the population.
There are a number of reasons for this. Firstly, experts see patterns start to emerge. Tasks become second nature because they’ve done them so often. They understand the power of subtle changes and how click-through rates impact overall lead generation.
Experts have also made mistakes (and understand their importance to future success). They’ve learned from these mistakes and their education comes from the real world and not solely from reading.
When using a professional property management company, you are essentially buying expert time. This will include years of experience and access to their expert systems and processes.
Benefits Of Having a Property Manager Handle Your Listings
When dealing with a property marketing expert, you should expect them to know your market. That means understanding the neighborhood where each of your units are located and the ideal target audience.
The reality is there is no ‘one size fits all’ solution in marketing. And what works in today’s economic environment may not necessarily work in the future. An expert will be able to see new patterns emerging and adapt immediately.
You should expect to get additional value from your property manager with:
- Selection (or creation) of professional high-converting photography.
- Well written, conversion-focused write ups.
- Rental site directory selection.
- Headline copywriting tactics (an often overlooked strategy to get more clicks).
- Lead tracking and funnels.
- Social sharing strategies.
- Marketing segmentation strategies by neighborhoods.
- Continual education on new online tactics.
- Leveraging relationships with advertising websites to get priority positions or lower costs.
Many people overlook the experience factor when deciding to do the work on their own. Hiring an expert usually pays for itself because, most importantly, you have a dedicated team marketing your property to its fullest.
As you develop your portfolio of properties, you’ll need an expert to help. Contact Lori Gill and Associates. They can provide a range of property management services so you will be able to manage your time and your staff resources effectively.
Todd Jamieson is the President at EnvisionUP (a Google Partner) and has extensive experience in Internet Marketing, Web Development and Local SEO. To learn more about Todd, visit his company’s website at EnvisionUP.com.