Resident Onboarding is one of the most time-consuming tasks for property managers. It’s tough because you want your new residents to feel welcomed. After all, moving into a new building is a big deal. You want to give a personalized service, be helpful and start the relationship the best way possible. A really great way to achieve this time and time again is using videos during your resident onboarding process.
Why are videos better than resident guides?
Resident guides are great, don’t get us wrong. They are useful and necessary for your building but you have to admit, they’re also kinda boring. People don’t want to read through it all. So what happens?
A) You end up answering the same questions over and over, repeating the same info that’s available in your resident guide.
B) You do one-on-one walk-throughs with all your new residents to make sure they know everything they need to when moving to your building.
C) Both A + B
Yikes! That’s a lot of time and energy wasted that you could’ve used to, say, book an amazing event powered by the Flamingo Event Marketplace 👀
Heavy PDFs, printed guides or a policy book are hard sells, even if they have important information (think privacy policies, have YOU ever read one?). On the other hand, videos are easily consumed and more entertaining to watch than reading a 30 page document. People actually enjoy watching videos, there’s a reason YouTube gets more than 1 billion views per day! Millenials and Gen Z’s are all about digestible content, instead of fighting it, embrace it!
How to Approach Onboarding Videos for Residents
First off, we suggest partnering up with your corporate Marketing team. They might have some objections at first but in reality these resident onboarding videos could be incredibly beneficial for them as well. If done correctly and with care, this material can (and should) make its way into your Instagram Reels, stories, feed, even to your YouTube channel or your website. One set of videos to engage both new residents AND prospects? Yes please.
To figure out the topics, try to focus on the stuff that:
- Your residents HAVE to know about from the get-go.
- Your residents WANT to know from the get-go.
Let’s go through a couple of examples to get you started…
1. Maintenance 101 Videos
You can partner up with your maintenance supervisor to figure out the most common requests. If you get this series right, you’ll not only will you remove uncertainty from your new residents but you’ll help out your maintenance crew. Tickets are likely to come down and common issues will be resolved much quicker if people have the information they need from the beginning. For reference, check out how our friends at Centerspace and their now famous “Maintenance in a Minute” videos. Centerspace realized that their residents wanted to feel empowered and to have a self-service option when it came to small maintenance fixes. Are there any DIY maintenance videos that would make sense for your building?
2. Resident Services Videos
For example, your package handling policies or how to book amenities. How about how to contact management? You want to educate your residents on the best way to get in touch with you. A short-friendly video around the preferred method to contact you will improve your chances of people actually using that method.
3. Major Policies
Resident onboarding is the perfect time to get your policies across because, as you know, common sense isn’t really that common. Take this opportunity to talk about your rent, pet, amenities or any other major policies you want your residents to keep in mind.
4. Moving In and Moving Out
My favorite! For folks that are moving in, get creative and record a welcome home video. You could get the whole staff to participate and do a fun, authentic welcome home video that will make your residents happy and get them on your side from day one. As for moving out, a few topics you could touch on are: how to do a unit inspection, how to renew your lease or how the moving out process looks like.
Video tips and tricks
A few things to keep in mind when producing these videos:
- Keep them short and sweet! Anywhere from 30 seconds to 2 minutes, tops.
- Show you and your team’s personality.
- Make it fun! You want your videos to be entertaining so that residents retain the info.
- Make them accessible and easy to find. Youtube playlists are a great resource!
- Add them to your resident app with your resident guide.
We understand you have busy lives and adding video production to your list of to-do’s might seem like a lot. Our recommendation is to make this something you do once a week. Just figure out with your team what’s pressing and create the video around it. Even a simple thing like recording yourself going through a Power Point presentation can do so much for your onboarding. It will make you stand out from your competitors, who are doing things the old way and expecting residents to do things they’ve never done before (read a whole-a$$ resident guide on their moving day). Good thing is, you’re not them. You do things differently. You innovate, are creative and like to stand out.
As a bonus, below is the recording of a webinar we had on the topic, followed by the slides.