5 ways housing associations can improve their sales and marketing

5 ways housing associations can improve their sales and marketing
by Jordan Wheat 1 June 2021

Sales and marketing for new home sellers has certainly had to adapt over the last 18 months. Whilst some have thrived by seizing the opportunity, others have retreated on development programmes.

Working with some of the most successful homebuilders and housing associations, we believe that there are some key approaches to drive sales efficiencies, performance, and growth.

 

  1. Understand your processes: how can automation be used to drive more personable experiences?

The best customer experiences are personable. When making big emotive decisions, we all require some level of reassurance - which is arguably best served up with human interaction, in person or over the phone. In the sales and marketing world, we refer to this as driving better experiences with ‘prime customer time’. If prime customer time is key to successful selling, then surely, we need to maximise this time for our sellers and marketers, right?

A clear mapped out set of processes will help drive consistency and efficiency amongst the team, whether its right to buy, shared ownership, or even private sale. With these processes agreed, you can then leverage digital customer engagement platforms to drive automation and remove manual tasks from sales users - freeing up time to spend with the customer.

 

  1. Remove paper-based risk and convert more effectively

Are you still using traditional methods like postage to secure your reservation signatures and confirm with customers? Payment gateways and e-signature tools can ensure an almost instant turnaround of commercial documentation and deposit receipt, meaning speed and security of cash handover for both you and the customer.

Whether it is home demonstration forms or completion statements, there are tools to remove paper-based customer touch points which ultimately mitigates risk (of wrongly completing or misplacing). These can be leveraged by sales team members on mobile and tablet devices to create an improved experience for both colleagues and customers.

 

  1. Informed reporting and intelligent insights

Having a single view of the customer journey and development activity means that you can make both proactive and reactive decisions to improve sales and marketing performance. Whether it’s being notified of something blocking a completion, or even a notice of a drop of enquiries in the past seven days, real-time insights will allow you to take action faster.

We all know we can be guilty of spending too much time gathering information and data to satisfy a management summary or report. What if we could get this time back and have it in real-time at our fingertips? Having an integrated solution to show sales and marketing data can drive this real-time reporting experience for you.

 

  1. Make the most of what you have

Are you getting enquiries from your website and portals but often find that they are isolated in email inboxes or spreadsheets? This can mean that gauging a sense of priority or visibility is preventing your teams from making the most of what’s coming inbound.

Rightmove, Zoopla, and other enquiry portals with new homes for sale offer up API’s to allow you to hook them into modern customer engagement solutions – ensuring no double handling, and in some cases real time workflow to notify sales executives of website activity and lead scoring.

Rather than looking outside for further lead generation, are you really doing enough with those enquiries that you have? Are you tracking their web interaction and referring back to them when new property types of their interest become available?

 

  1. Create a thriving, people-centred culture

With Covid-19 teaching a lot of us about remote working and restricted interaction, its important that we don’t forget how important a people-first approach will be to ensure a thriving sales and marketing environment.

The two sides to this are: First, to ensure that your people the sales and marketing departments are empowered to deliver their accountabilities successfully via remote working, with easy use and efficient tools. Second, that you don’t lose that personable customer experience approach despite of temporary and future interaction regulations. Having personable communications and face time is still going to give and sales and marketing team that edge. Creating that sense of going the extra mile will always help you go the furthest, and for the foreseeable the old saying of ‘people buy people’ will continue to stay true.

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Topics: Sales, Marketing, housing associations, housing