HOA Boards: Attracting Homebuyers to Your Community

An HOA guide to creating a new homebuyer marketing plan

HOA boards manage many aspects of their communities, from deciding how to spend funds to choosing service providers and conducting strategic planning. However, one key area that can get forgotten is making and executing a plan to attract new homebuyers. Marketing an HOA is still just marketing

HOAs unsure how to promote their properties should understand that the principles of marketing are universal, no matter what you’re selling. The tactics Ford uses to sell cars and Tiffany uses to sell jewelry can also attract homebuyers to a community or condo. The process is always about identifying people who are likely to buy the product and then finding ways to reach them.

Let’s break down how to develop a marketing campaign to attract new homebuyers.

Determine the community’s brand

Before an HOA can begin to promote its community, it needs to understand the property’s brand. Branding is vital, as it determines how to sell any product or service. It lets buyers know what they’re going to get, whether they’re shopping for clothes, watches or frozen meals.

The same goes for an HOA; branding helps it focus on what is most attractive about their property and what to emphasize. To crystallize those thoughts, here some questions to ask about the community:

  • What is its “flavor”?
  • What would make someone want to live there?
  • What can homebuyers expect if they live there?
  • What are its top selling points and amenities?
  • What sets it apart? Why is it a great place to live?
  • What would its “tagline” be?

The HOA should decide “who” they are as a community and let that direct all marketing efforts.

Determine your target audience

In marketing terms, a target market refers to the people most likely to buy your product or service. In this case, it is those most likely to buy a home/condo in the HOA. To answer that question, the board should ask whether the community is:

  • A retirement property that caters to active seniors
  • A family-friendly community
  • A downtown condo building that appeals to single working professionals 
  • A luxury complex that attracts people with a certain income
  • A community in a desirable location that is close to entertainment and shopping

Board members should then come up with a profile of their “ideal buyer” that includes the following:

  • Age
  • Family status (single/married/children/empty nesters)
  • Working or retired
  • Location
  • Income level
  • Lifestyle
  • Interests
  • Single family home or high-rise condo

Once you have a profile, create messaging that speaks to those people.

Find out where the target audience “lives”

Marketers place ads where their target market is likely to see them. A successful plan will find ways to connect with the target audience, both online and in the real world.

Questions to consider:

  • Where do they shop?
  • What shows do they watch? What movies?
  • Are they on social media? What channels?
  • Do they cook or eat out? Where do they eat out?
  • What activities do they enjoy?
  • What do they read?
  • Do they have kids? What are they involved in? Are they interested in being near good schools?
  • Do they travel?

Advertise the community

Once the HOA has profiled the target audience and where they live, the next step is advertising. There are many approaches and venues to explore, from billboards and print ads to online sources and social media. Focusing on the target audience should guide marketers to the right advertising decisions.

Marketing an HOA through community engagement

Events can be a way to engage potential buyers directly and attract them to the community. Here are some ideas:

  • Sponsor or have a booth at local community events
  • A “senior day” with free blood pressure/blood sugar screenings and health lectures
  • A back-to-school event, with doctors and other experts talking about nutrition, dealing with anxiety about school, safety, etc.
  • Cooking demonstrations with local chefs
  • Fitness events that cater to young professionals
  • Classic movie nights under the stars

Think about what would interest the target market and plan an event that will attract those people.

Don’t forget the real estate community

Events geared toward real estate agents and brokers can also lead people in the industry to steer their clients your way. A free “open house” event can enable both homebuyers and agents to experience the attractions and benefits of a property firsthand. Marketing your community or condo is vital if you want to attract new homebuyers. Use this guide to help create an effective marketing campaign that will sell the benefits of living in your community. Then use VendorSmart to ensure you hire the right vendors for your HOA and manage them effectively.