Starting any business is a daunting proposition. It takes an incredible amount of hard work and dedication. Different types of businesses present unique challenges and obstacles. In the case of starting a condo management business specifically, there are additional considerations that the entrepreneur needs to factor in to ensure the business starts up as smoothly as possible. We explore some items that must be included in any checklist when starting a condo management business.
1. Company Name, Website and Domain Name
Nowadays, finding a name for a business is done in parallel with verifying the availability of the domain name. There are several advantages of having a memorable name (as long as the name is easy to remember for the right reasons). The most obvious reason is that customers and potential customers will more easily remember it. Having the corresponding domain name will allow customers and others to easily find your business online. This has become such an important facet of starting up that it has been listed as #1 on this list.
Creating a website has become pretty easy nowadays with do-it-yourself tools such as Wix, Squarespace and others. There are step-by-step instructions on how to do it with plenty of tutorials on Youtube and other sites. Technical skills are not required. One thing to note about the actual website is that among other content, the contact information should be made very clear so that potential customers may easily reach you.
For creative designs on the website and also with branding, there are plenty of freelancers or agencies that can help you with this. Similar to the company name, having memorable logos, taglines and branding not only on the website, but across all branding materials is critical in conveying a sense of dependability and professionalism.
2. Digital Marketing/Advertising
Having create a home on the internet is one thing, but the next step would be to funnel traffic (i.e., potential customers) onto your website. This is done via digital marketing and advertising. The best way to funnel traffic to your website would be to begin with Google AdWords and search engine optimization.
Other avenues that are a must include signing up for Google My Business. This channel will give your website more visibility for attracting potential clients. This provides the business visibility on Google in a way only Google can present it.
3. Registering with Relevant Associations
In most every geographic region, there are associations that act as resources to property managers in the area. They are generally a great place to start in terms of learning about the competitive landscape, industry best-practices and trends. They generally have a directory of all property managers in the region and also present avenues for advertising. For example, it would be a great idea to sign up in Ontario for ACMO and in Quebec, RGCQ.
4. Networking and Outreach
Similar to other service-based business, networking will be a critical component in the success of a property management business. The goal is to meet, engage and get to know as many people as possible in the industry, whether it is vendors, board members or even competitors. There are plenty of networking groups and events, most of which are listed in the respective associations of property managers (see above). Not only will this help in increasing business but also become a primary channel for recruiting employees to the business.
5. Leveraging Technology
In today's world, a successful condo manager has to be tech savvy. New technologies are pushing the boundaries of efficiencies in terms of workflow, communication and overall satisfaction of clients. Without leveraging technologies, a property manager would simply be lagging behind the best. As the duties and responsibilities become ever more complex and challenging for property managers, the top tier managers resort to getting help from technologies to organize, communicate and to drive efficiencies across the board. This allows them to do more in less time.
Not only does technology improve the efficiencies of property managers, it has actually become an expectation on the part of boards and residents. Exceptional managers listen and recognize this and are able to deliver on these expectations.
While this is a non-exhaustive list of things to be mindful of when starting a condo management business, it is certainly not everything. We'd be more than happy to elaborate and share with you our experiences during a free demo of Condo Manager.