Why is public relations important in property development?
In the highly competitive property market, public relations helps developers and agents sell and build their profile to attract future buyers and deals.
What should never be underestimated is the ‘halo’ effect of being quoted as an industry expert in newspapers or interviewed on TV and the value of on-sharing that coverage across social media.
As a PR agency which has helped property clients achieve millions of dollars of ‘free’ publicity across local, state and national TV, radio, print and online we have put together a guide on how PR can help developers, agents and others in the property market including surveyors, planners and architects.
1.Promote key stages of your development
Seems obvious but each time a development hits a key milestone is a potential opportunity for media attention. Think scale and statistics, think sales figures and think pictures. Your PR agency should be prompting you for updates and information to find a newsworthy angle for a media release and photos/video that shows the progress.
2. Become a ‘go-to’ market commentator
Show you are an expert and step up to offer your opinion and help put market research into context for local media markets. Your understanding of the property market is what helps sell your service to find a PR agency that can seek out opportunities for you to comment.
3. Offer up human interest stories
Testimonials are powerful and the media – TV, radio and print – regularly need ‘case studies’ to help personalise stories about trends in the property market. Persuade your clients to talk to the media. The publicity can often help sell a property and promotes the team behind the project whether it is the developer, architect and builder or an agent.
4. Watch out for trends
Identify trends in the market. A new “property hotspot” or design trend can create a headline for journalists. Where possible have figures to support your findings and again a case study is always useful.
5. Tips and how-to advice
Journalists like to give viewers, readers and listeners information they can use so think about tips and advice you can give that may be timely or seasonal. The advantage of providing this type of advice piece is that it further helps position you as an expert meaning the reporter will have you on their list next time they are looking for comment.
Pose and answer commonly asked questions to generate a following and attract enquiries. Think about the challenges your clients face and the questions you and your team are regularly asked. Unlike news stories, blogs are less likely to go out of date and you can share them on social media.
7. International market attention
Property PR can put your development or property in front of international investors by targeting real estate magazines and publications in key overseas markets. It is particularly useful for promoting prestige properties and developments.
8. Make social media a priority
Media Releases, blogs and media coverage created and earned through PR is fresh, quality content for social media. The added value of news coverage earned through PR is that news organisations share stories to their audience therefore far increasing the exposure of your brand.
9. Build a network of media contacts
Property PR puts you top-of-mind for journalists looking for stories and comment and by interacting with the media you are building an invaluable network of contacts. PR firms, the very good ones, have great relationships with working journalists and they are your gateway to building your own strong network.
10. Schedule a newsletter
As well as sharing on social media, all the good content being created can help you create a newsletter that can be sent to your growing database of customers, investors and stakeholders. Remember to comply with legislation though, you will need to build a mailing list that gives your contacts a way to ‘opt out’.
Leisa Goddard is a journalist with 30 years media experience and Founder & Managing Director of award-winning PR firm, Adoni Media which has proven success delivering property PR. Adoni Media is a national firm with offices in Brisbane, Sydney and Perth.