- Trust Marketing Platform
Boost review volume and rating to accurately reflect online the positive experience residents have in-person & use reviews to inform operations decisions
Avanti Residential manages multifamily communities across Colorado, Arizona, Utah, Kansas, Missouri and Florida. The Avanti team takes pride in delivering an excellent experience for residents, specifically developing a program called Ignite Happy, focused on bringing joy to residents and onsite staff.
Dedicated to resident satisfaction, Avanti teams are always quick to address any concerns that arise. However, the team found themselves struggling to increase review volume and overcome a high rate of negative sentiment online, as many multifamily teams do. Property management reputation improvement requires effort, strategy and follow-through.
In the eyes of Avanti Residential’s VP of Marketing, Allison Walentowicz, “reviews are a numbers game. The more reviews you have, the fairer your score is, and you have a true understanding of where you’re at.”
“Reviews are a numbers game. The more reviews you have, the fairer your score is, and you have a true understanding of where you’re at.
—Allison Walentowicz, VP of Marketing
Without enough reviews to fairly reflect the positive experience Avanti residents were having, Walentowicz sought out a review generation software to help Avanti’s properties increase review volume and, in turn, boost Google star ratings. To supplement, they also looked for a managed service that could assist with responding to reviews.
Over the past several years, the Avanti team struggled to find a reputation management vendor that fit its needs.
Avanti’s prior vendor offered review response and review solicitation tools, but these services weren’t giving them the data they wanted.
Walentowicz needed a new vendor that sends review invitations automatically instead of manually and included a review response service that would allow her teams to have some input and oversight over the replies being published.
Plus, she saw an opportunity to use the reviews Avanti was getting to make operational changes, but she and her team needed data to back up decisions.
It was time to find a new partner that could support property management clients like Avanti Residential with automatic review solicitation tools, bespoke response services, and insightful data and reporting details.
Avanti Residential partnered with Widewail on July 1, 2022, launching two Widewail products across multiple locations: Engage and Invite.
Invite integrates with Avanti’s property management software to automatically send personalized SMS requests to leave a review after customized trigger points within the resident lifecycle.
Engage is Widewail’s managed review response service where an expert team of responders writes custom, personalized, and keyword-rich responses to all reviews, with input and approval from Avanti teams when needed.
Integrated with Avanti’s PMS, Yardi, Widewail’s Invite makes the process of getting more reviews across Avanti communities hands-off for Walentowicz and her team.
Reflecting on the effectiveness of Widewail’s tool when plugged into Yardi, Walentowicz said “It’s been invaluable. The Yardi integration gives us the capability to ask for reviews much more frequently and at a cadence that isn’t a nuisance.”
Now, the team doesn’t have to manually upload contact records to solicit reviews. Instead, Invite automatically sends out review requests at predetermined stages of the resident lifecycle: Tour, Move-In and Renewal, and soon, Move-Out. The process with Widewail frees up onsite and corporate teams to focus on performance and attending to residents’ needs.
Walentowicz wanted her onsite teams to be aware of the reviews posted about their respective communities without utilizing too much of their time to keep track of them. From her perspective, a perk of Widewail was the way responders loop in onsite team members when negative reviews come in. Responders craft a personalized reply to all reviews, and, for negatives, they send a suggested response for onsite staff’s approval prior to publishing.
This way, her teams can provide additional context and take some accountability over how that response was crafted, a process which “requires onsite teams to think about the content in the review or why the review was left in the first place to make adjustments on the ground.”
Managing onsite operations is always tricky, but the Avanti team is pleased with the balanced level of involvement the Widewail platform allows for onsite staff to contribute to and affect the outcome of addressing review content.
Widewail’s Trust Marketing Platform includes a robust data and reporting section to illustrate review volume and rating over time. Further, Widewail’s reporting breaks down reviews by touchpoint so the Avanti team can drill down to see ratings by tours, move-ins and renewals.
“Ultimately, why Avanti made the switch to Widewail was that the data capabilities were much deeper than other reputation management vendors.”
—Allison Walentowicz, VP of Marketing
Allison Walentowicz noted that “Ultimately, why Avanti made the switch to Widewail was that the data capabilities were much deeper than other reputation management vendors.” Specifically, the ability to filter data by touchpoint helps Walentowicz make informed decisions.
“My marketing team views all our reviews as an opportunity. They tell you where you’re doing well or where you’re falling down and gives you the opportunity to make adjustments.”
Using the information in reviews, she makes adjustments to Avanti’s operations and what each team is doing. Widewail’s reporting makes it possible for Walentowicz and her team to be data-informed when changing policies, revising strategies and proposing budget allocations to make updates.
“We’re using Widewail data and layering it on top of resident surveys, pricing strategy and operational information. It’s helping us to revise each step of the customer journey and really be thoughtful because we have the data to inform those decisions.”
Increasing review volume and average rating across Avanti’s locations was an important goal for Walentowicz and her team because she knew just how important reviews are in her industry and to the prospective resident’s journey.
“At this point, [multifamily marketers] know that people are reading reviews and they’re doing all their research prior to deciding where to visit. They’re only visiting one or two properties. They’ve narrowed it down and they now just need to see, touch, and feel the property.”
For Google reviews, Avanti was striving to reach a 4.0 rating across the board because good reviews increase search engine visibility, are more appealing to prospective residents, and even make them willing to pay more.
“58% of people said they would be willing to spend more money with businesses that have positive reviews. We know that a reputation management strategy is vitally important to making sure we can capture not only those who want to visit our properties but those who are able to pay the rents that we ask for.”
—Allison Walentowicz, VP of Marketing
Across the board, Avanti properties have seen improvements in both volume and rating in the first year since their launch with Widewail.
More Google visibility and engagement
In the first half of 2023 alone, Avanti Residential properties
The effectiveness of Invite became especially clear in a specific case. Avanti used Campaigns– a feature of Invite that allows businesses to customize the language and timing of review requests– to send specific requests by resident touchpoint: tour, move-in and renewal.
When the Avanti team started a Campaign that used Renewal as a trigger to ask residents for reviews in Q4, 2022, the results by Q1, 2023 were astonishing:
Further, Invite enabled the Avanti Team to get reviews after Tours and Move-Ins. In the first half of 2023:
Great reviews and boosted performance make the life of Avanti’s VP of Marketing easier, who said that Widewail’s responsiveness and ability to answer any question “help me have really nice conversations with the on site teams. Any time I’m allowed to be a cheerleader because my property teams are succeeding is a great day.”
*See more of our Property Management Reputation case studies.
Learn how Widewail can help your multifamily portfolio get more Google reviews and attract more prospective residents. Schedule a demo today.