Valentine Thought: 12% of all marriages are a result of an online introduction.

It happened again at lunch today….another online dating success story and a pretty new diamond on the left hand to prove it. Yes, two more people have found love through online dating. I also have a friend who met a wonderful man online and they had their first date on Valentin’s Day. Wow, these online dating sites kick out results! And I thought I had to move to Phoenix to date a man! Little did I know people are finding their perfect match by clicking away.

Let’s think about this trend. I feel this means that, more than ever, people are trusting the Internet to be the hub of their social expansion. This is good news and means that Internet Listing Services (which act like Match.com but for apartments) will continue to gain popularity. The renter will see that the site can be trusted to help them with their relocation to a new apartment home.

A friend of mine recently told me that as soon as she knew she was getting divorced she hopped on to a dating site and got back in the game! (Results: After 34 coffee dates, she found Mr. Wonderful. They are getting married this weekend in Costa Rica!)
So, it must be true that if an Internet Listing Service helped the customer find their current apartment, they will return to that site when it is time to search for another apartment. For this reason, it would be wise to study not only what sites generate traffic but take it a step further and invest in the listing services that generate leases.

What makes an effective Internet listing? First off, would you consider meeting someone for a coffee date if you did not have a photo to view on the matching Web site? My guess is your answer is no. Same is true for apartment shoppers, they want to see photos. You can have unlimited photos so snap away and get them posted to the Web page.

Next, it is important to get the highest search ranking you can. Figure out which site is currently bringing in the most traffic and leases and maximize your presence by upgrading to their premium package. Make that site work even harder for you have already figured out it is money well spent.

And finally, follow up on every lead within an hour….yes, an hour. In fact, that is almost too late. In the world of texting and instant messaging, people expect a response now. They may forget about you in an hour and move on to the next profile, I mean apartment community.