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May 13, 2024

Mastering Residential Reputation Management - Decoding Multifamily Podcast

Up your reputation management game with expert insights on responding to reviews, leveraging positive feedback and using technology to stand out in the competitive multifamily market.

In this episode of the Decoding Multifamily property management podcast, hosts Paul Marks and Suzanne Hopson Hogan sit down with Katie Ritter and Jake Hughes from Widewail, a leading provider of reputation management solutions.

The group discusses online reviews' crucial role in the apartment search process and shares proven strategies for improving your property's residential reputation.

If you want to attract more prospects and retain happy residents, this episode is a must-listen.

Property Management Podcast 2-1

Property Management Podcast - Episode Summary:

The conversation kicks off with Katie and Jake explaining why the first page of Google’s (organic and local) search results is the new definition of “curb appeal” for apartment communities. They emphasize the importance of claiming and optimizing your Google Business Profile, as it's often the first touchpoint for potential residents.

"Your online reputation is really the curb appeal of today. Just like people used to drive by a property to see how it looks, now they're going online to read reviews and see what others are saying about your community." - Katie Ritter

Next, the hosts dive into the challenges of responding to negative reviews. Katie shares her framework for crafting professional, empathetic responses that address the reviewer's concerns while highlighting the property's strengths. She also discusses how negative feedback can be used to identify areas for actionable improvement and prevent future issues.

"It's not just about responding to negative reviews, it's about responding to all reviews. Every review, whether it's positive or negative, is an opportunity to engage with your residents and show that you value their feedback." - Jake Hughes

The episode then explores the power of positive reviews and how to leverage them as social proof and residential community marketing assets. Jake shares examples of properties that have successfully showcased glowing reviews on their website and social media channels to build trust and credibility with prospects ranging from students to families to seniors.

"Reputation management is not a one-time project, it's an ongoing process that requires consistent effort. You need to be monitoring and responding to reviews on a regular basis, not just when there's a crisis." - Katie Ritter

Finally, the group discusses the role of technology in streamlining residential reputation management efforts. Katie and Jake introduce Widewail's AI-powered platform, which helps properties classify and analyze large volumes of reviews - across multiple sites - to provide actionable insights for property management companies. They share case studies of clients who have seen significant improvements in their online reputation and lead generation thanks to these tools.

Key Takeaways:

  • Respond to all reviews promptly and professionally, aiming to resolve issues offline when possible
  • Use negative reviews as an opportunity to demonstrate your commitment to customer service
  • Encourage satisfied residents to share their experiences on Google, Yelp, and ApartmentRatings
  • Showcase positive reviews prominently on your website and social media profiles
  • Invest in reputation management software to save time and gain actionable insights

We hope that you found value in this property management podcast. In today's competitive multifamily market, online reputation management is no longer optional. As Katie and Jake explain, properties that proactively monitor and respond to resident reviews, leverage positive feedback and use technology to streamline the improvement process will have a significant advantage in attracting and retaining residents. 

For more expert advice on mastering your online reputation, be sure to listen to the full episode of the Decoding Multifamily podcast.

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Additional Resources:

Dave Pye

A digital marketing dinosaur, my SEO career began in 1999 at one of Boston's first digital marketing agencies. Prior to becoming Widewail's Director of Search I had a long focus on GMB, reviews and local organic visibility for automotive dealerships in competitive locales. Regardless of a specific industry, this decade of experience was the perfect precursor for a role supporting our innovative Engage and Invite services. Originally from Canada, I enjoy hockey, Frank Sinatra, writing on a variety of subjects, old movies - and am the proud parent of a geriatric Boston Terrier. Customers, peers, or anyone with online review-related questions are encouraged to contact me, anytime.

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