Click to watch the full Cracking the Multi-Source Attribution Code Roundtable video
The prospect journey in multifamily is more complex than ever before. Prospective renters typically visit multiple websites and use an array of social media apps to gather information about a property before reaching out to a community or scheduling a tour.
Because of that, multi-source attribution – i.e., identifying and determining the value of each touchpoint of the prospect journey – is more important than ever. But, as a whole, the apartment industry has yet to embrace this process.
That was one of the takeaways of the “Cracking the Multi-Source Attribution Code” roundtable at the recent AIM Reconnect.
“As far as I know, our industry does not do too much with multi-source attribution,” said Jaime Conde, vice president of sales at Anyone Home and the moderator of the roundtable.
“I’ve had multiple conversations where operators will come to me and say, ‘Hey, we would love to see multi-source attribution.’ And my question always is, ‘Great, how would you like to see that or use that?’ A lot of times the answer I get is, ‘I don’t really know yet. I’ve never seen it before. I don’t know what I would really do with that.'”
One of the session’s participants, Jonas Bordo, co-founder and CEO of Dwellsy, voiced doubt that true multi-source attribution is even attainable.
“I don’t think the renter’s process makes multi-source attribution possible because of privacy restrictions,” he said. “I’ve done several hundred renter interviews over the past year. And the renters do not know which ILSs they used. They haven’t a clue.”
Bordo admitted that detailed tracking of the various websites a prospect visits in their apartment search is what marketers need to truly understand the role of different sources.
For instance, it could help an operator understand that a site such as Craigslist, which might be a relatively small direct source of leads, still plays a valuable role in the prospect journey.
“How many people are seeing us on Craigslist, then going onto our property website organically or going on Google and searching for customer sentiment and trying to learn more about our property?” Choi said. “Maybe they end up on Apartments.com or end up on our property website and then become a lead.”
According to Anyone Home data, the average prospect makes 3.2 contacts with an apartment community.
A strong multi-source attribution solution also can help marketers optimize their spends, noted Joe Mendez, vice president of marketing at Advenir Living.
“If I have that multi-touch attribution, I know where I can pull money away from, which are those advertising sources that are just generating leads for the sake of generating leads, and I can focus that money better on areas that are producing higher-quality and higher-conversion leads,” he said.
Looking ahead, in addition to optimized multi-source attribution solutions, marketers could also benefit from more predictive analytics, according to Leigh Sublett, director of marketing at Venterra Realty.
“I would like to see some type of analytics that can adjust your spend based on the kind of exposure you have,” Sublett said. “I would love to get there. The decisions we make right now are based on the previous data.”