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June 16, 2021

Key Performance Indicators for Multifamily Digital Marketing

As we delve further into our multifamily digital marketing series, we now come to the most important part: results. The best way to track whether your marketing efforts are getting results is through KPIs, or key performance indicators. 

Back in the marketing days of old, companies placed ads on traditional billboards, on TV, the radio etc., but they had no way of knowing if the ad worked unless someone came to their business and mentioned it. There were no hard results to measure from traditional advertising. The difference with digital advertising is with every single step—from when you launch a campaign to when somebody signs a lease or a mortgage—there are trackable data points that tell you whether your ads are working effectively.

Grouping Key Performance Indicators

You want to track the right metrics in real time, so you can identify and make the strategy pivots that are necessary to optimize for better performance—improve ROI, reduce costs, increase profit, and grow your business. 

In digital marketing, there are basically three groupings of KPIs:

  • Off-page KPIs. These happen at the ad channel level and track traffic that’s being pushed to you from other sites. 
  • On-page KPIs. These happen on your website or your Google My Business Page. (Social media can be considered on page or also off page depending on how you’re looking at it.)
  • End Results. Sales, signed leases, dollars in the bank—this is where the real value comes in.

Whereas a novice digital marketer might focus on getting clicks and impressions and a good bounce rate on your website, those metrics don't mean anything unless you have the end result in mind. Tracking all the way to the lease is how those other metrics become meaningful, by defining them thoroughly. 

Off-Page KPIs

While there are many data points that you can look at in digital marketing, it really boils down to a handful of KPIs that really show the exact results that you want to see—particularly if you're focused on the end result: driving revenue.

Off-page KPIs start with impressions. 

How many people are seeing your ad? What is your click-through rate? How often people are actually clicking on the ad is a crucial KPI. The importance of the impressions alone is dependent on the context. In display ads or in paid search ads, impressions don't matter as much. With social media, on the other hand, impressions are much more significant.

Impressions are about brand awareness and brand lift. Your goal may be to get maximum impressions, but in digital marketing, that’s more of a supplemental KPI. Click-through rate is where you find real value, whether through organic search, paid search side, or display ads.  A good CTR indicates that you are hitting the right audience. 

What should you do if you’re getting tons of impressions but few or no clicks? Well, you're not reaching the right people, which means one of two things: 

  • Your audience is not defined correctly; or
  • Your ads aren't speaking the message effectively. 

Click-through rate is what really helps determine ad relevance. This is where you can experiment with images and ad copy to determine what actually works.

On-Page KPIs

Results in this grouping are commonly referred to as conversions. In digital advertising or marketing, they’re known as goal completions. Whatever you call them, these are the actions that you want your customers or your potential tenants to take whenever they get to your website. These typically take the form of a click action, which is tracked using Google Analytics or Google Tag Manager.

There are four basic types of click actions in multifamily: scheduled tours, contact forms, phone calls, and web chats. (Web chat systems can be tricky to track, as they’re often third party software.)

End Result KPIs

They've converted on the website. Now what? This is where the end result comes in, where you take all the data that you're tracking and determine what's actually generating revenue for you. 

How much money are you willing to pay to get somebody to fill out a contact form online, schedule a tour, or sign a lease? Companies rarely have a target CPA (cost per acquisition) nailed down, but this is how you really measure marketing effectiveness. So, how do you decide on that number?

  • Focus on defining your end result and figure out how you can get that result as efficiently as possible. 
  • Determine how valuable your KPIs are. How valuable is a phone call? A completed contact form? A booked (or completed) tour? What is a target CPA for each of these items? 
  • Look at how many marketing dollars go into retainers, media spends, website design, development, branding, etc. Then you can decide what a target CPA is for each signed lease.

The Agency Difference

The difference with a seasoned digital marketer or agency is simple: strategy. There’s intention, deliberateness involved in the process. You’re setting a goal, creating a plan, and tracking the data to see where adjustments need to be made. You’re making conscious choices about who your audience is, and how to best resonate with them. And you’re getting valuable results without blowing out your marketing budget.

If you’re looking for help with tracking KPIs or determining your target CPA, we’ve got you! Visit our
website or give us a call. Don’t forget to check out the podcast and share it (and this blog!) on social media or with anyone needing a little digital marketing advice.

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