The impact of COVID-19 has extended its way into paid social media performance for multifamily. The economic toll of the global pandemic has forced every business, large and small, to reevaluate their marketing strategies as we shelter-in-place. While certain e-commerce goods have boomed during the lockdown- at-home fitness equipment, puzzles, cooking supplies, etc.- many businesses have pulled back on their digital marketing spend until life becomes a bit more certain and consumer optimism returns. The result has led to a reduced amount of competition within Facebook ads alongside an increase in user time spent on social media sites as we spend more time at home. With an increase in time on site and less competition, multifamily social media campaigns seem to have benefited in some ways in April with signs of renter optimism returning in the early days of May.
When comparing April social media ad performance to March, Street Digital Media saw a 9.08% increase in Reach, the number of unique users who see your ad, on Facebook and Instagram. While overall impressions remained flat month over month, it shows that more individual users are seeing your multifamily social media ads, giving your brand greater exposure in your local market without having to
change your budget. While multifamily benefited from greater brand awareness, the economic and scientific uncertainty of COVID-19 looks to have led to a decrease in engagement and conversions from the ads themselves. Overall cost per click on Facebook Ads saw an increase of $.09 while unique clicks on the ads to the property website saw as high as a 31% decrease in some markets. Understandably, renters were apprehensive to move during a global pandemic.
The shift in consumer optimism seems to be changing, however. When comparing the first week of May to the first week of April, Street Digital Media saw a 5% increase in results, a 4.82% increase in unique clicks, and a 5.66% increase in landing page views on our Facebook remarketing campaigns. This shows glimmers that prospective renters are seeing multifamily social media ads and are more interested in moving to different apartment communities based on their increased engagement with the ads. As states ease into re-opening businesses timed with the beginning of the Summer leasing season, signs of renter optimism could not come at a better time. While rent collections continue to surprise many in and out of the industry, many properties are reporting concerns of lower projected occupancy in future months as some renters have been forced to adjust their living situations given the financial impact of COVID-19. Early signs of greater reach and increasing engagement show that renter optimism might be starting to shift and can help drive more traffic during the Summer.