Social media is changing, still. More specifically, Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat are constantly evolving to better serve businesses from an advertising and marketing standpoint. The question you should be asking: How can multifamily leverage these platforms to get in front of potential residents?

We’ve been thinking through the same thing. Luckily, these social platforms give multifamily properties a great opportunity to get creative.

The Surge of Social Media

Why spend time marketing on social media? Because that’s where your target audience is spending their time. A quick look at the numbers revealed 24 percent of U.S. adults use Snapchat, 69 percent use Facebook, and 37 percent use Instagram. Not to mention, many brands, advertising, and promotions have found their home within these apps.

Over time, these social media channels have taken some big strides in making their platforms more business-friendly, which means there’s room for multifamily. Let’s talk through how this will look for the industry.

Planning Your Content

Content is still king. What we mean is, if you don’t think through the content you’re sending out, you’re going to crash and burn. This question should always lead the way: What kind of content would our residents find valuable?

Content on social media shouldn’t be a chance to promote your available units or competitive prices. It should be a fun, creative outlet to engage your current (and potential) residents. Hosting a resident appreciation event? Get a few clips of residents saying what they love about your property. This type of content is a chance to relate to residents in a relevant way and show off your community’s personality.

Social Media Stories

One of the most popular features on social media currently are “Stories,” which are images and videos that hang around for 24 hours and can be viewed repeatedly. Stories allow marketers to curate content and get creative — not only with their own content but with user submissions.

Snapchat stories were first to market, followed by Instagram in November 2016, and Facebook in March 2017. What’s the biggest difference between the three? The audience.

Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat each have very different audiences — Facebook and Instagram offer a better opportunity to grow your following organically, while Snapchat requires users to input a username to follow an account, which isn’t as explorative as Instagram and Facebook.

Engage your followers by using these platforms to showcase the property, events, reminders, office antics, and everything in between. Is your property hosting a pool party this weekend? Why not snap an inviting picture of the pool and remind everyone that the “Party starts at 3 p.m.!” Are there amenities or offerings that your residents aren’t taking advantage of? Remind everyone that there’s fresh coffee in the leasing office every morning. Are the wheels churning yet?

The bottom line: Stories are an effective tool for engaging up-and-coming market segments. If you’re not utilizing this feature yet to promote your property, now is the time to start!