What's your unique selling point?
What's the difference between a good property manager and a fantastic one? This is a question we are often asked on the REIQ's Property Management Support Service hotline and typically, our response is this: a fantastic property manager has a unique selling point (USP) that sets them apart from their competition.
What is a USP?Before we delve into what your USP is, let's clarify what it isn't. A USP should not be about arrears management or the fact you conduct four routine inspections on your rent roll per year. These elements form part of your job description and aren't unique to the tasks other property managers in your area are doing.
However, your USP could be the way you perform these tasks. For example, you may use innovative proptech for easy maintenance approval that your direct competitors aren't utilising.
What USPs Are My Clients/Target Market Looking For?You might be reading this and thinking, how do we know if we're different from our competitors? Without spending an excessive amount of time obsessing over what your competitors are doing, it's still essential to do some light research on other agencies in the area to see what they offer, what they don't, and of course, what their USP is.
From there, you can conduct research on your current and past client database by way of service calls or surveys. Ask them what you've done well, and things that have impressed them as a client. It's also important to ask if there's anything you could do differently to ensure you're on the right track. As the old adage goes, see a need, fill a need.
How Do I Find My USP?Performing a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis on an annual basis is not only a useful exercise for finding or creating your USP, but it's also a great way to enhance your business year on year.
SWOT ANALYSIS PROMPTS:
|Identify your strengths||- What are they?
- Why are they your strengths?
- Do these strengths bring direct benefits to your customers and your business?
|Identify your weaknesses||- What are your weaknesses?
- Why are they a weakness?
- What impact will these weaknesses have if you don't change them?
- What will happen if you do change them?
|If you haven't already investigated your opportunities by way of market research, ask yourself:||- What are your opportunities for improvement?
- How can you take them?
- Why has no one else taken up this opportunity?
- What will be the outcome of seizing these opportunities?
|Finally, examine your threats:||- What impact do they have?
- What can you do to remove them?
- What is the result if you don't act?
Once you've conducted your SWOT analysis, you're likely to be in a better position to identify your USP.
Stop Saying "It's The Way We've Always Done Things"In every industry, there are good and poor suppliers. Failing to review the way you conduct your business simply because 'it's the way you've always done things' is a sure-fire way to put you behind your competitors and can lead you to have a negative USP in the marketplace.
So, rather than being known for doing the bare minimum or having to cut fees to stand out in the marketplace; become an advocate of your USP, market it, and use it to your potential.
Remember, clients are looking for value, innovation and communication - make sure you and your agency can provide all three.
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