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October 2013

Who is Your Ideal Resident

By Customer Experience & Engagement: Keeping the Customer You Earned No Comments

You are probably working on your 2014 marketing strategies right about now.  I want you to stop what you are doing and think about what kind of car your ideal resident drives.  Also think about what coffee they drink each morning.  Grab a team member for a quick brainstorm to really try to figure it out.


<a href=””><img class=”alignleft size-full wp-image-3321″ src=”” alt=”who is your ideal resident” width=”300″ height=”225″ /></a>You may be a bit confused right now, but there is a method to my madness.  I first experienced the “car and coffee” game when I used to work in a marketing and advertising agency.  Anytime we got a new client, a new team member, or even a new big project, we kicked off our discussions with these two questions.

Why did we do this, and why should you care?  Identifying your ideal resident’s car and coffee choices tells you a lot about them.  It tells you what kind of disposable income they have.  It also tells you what they value.  Maybe they are single and ready to mingle with a luxury coupe.  Or if they drive a van, there is a good chance they have a family.

This is information that you can’t find in your demographics report; it is part of their persona.  And, identifying your prospect persona means understanding your ideal resident’s goals, motivation, and behavior patterns.  Knowing and applying this knowledge is the difference between a high volume of unqualified leads and the right amount of qualified leads.

<a href=””><img class=”alignright size-full wp-image-3322″ src=”” alt=”the car and coffee game” width=”300″ height=”200″ /></a>When you play the “car and coffee” game, I also want you to (very honestly) answer the following questions to better understand your ideal resident.
<li>Who currently rents from you? (the good and the bad)</li>
<li>Why do people rent from you? (be honest!)</li>
<li>Where do your prospects live?</li>
<li>Who and what influence their decision?</li>
<li>Where are they getting their information?</li>
<li>What features and benefits are important?  (think playground or concierge)</li>
<li>What are common objections of the ideal group?</li>
Knowing all of this information will help you more effectively tailor your marketing strategy and tactics to the type of resident that best fits your property.  This means a much shorter sales cycle and less frustration from your team.

I’d love to hear about your discoveries and experience!


Misty Sanford
Social Insight Thought Leader
Renter’s Voice



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