When prospects signed up to lease some of the posh apartments at Circle West Campus in Austin, Texas, it wasn’t because they toured the property—the development wasn’t yet complete. Instead, they were lured by the “Live in the Circle” marketing campaign’s bold ads and interactive sessions with leasing agents. The leasing office featured “coming soon” mock movie posters. And the leasing agents took prospects on a virtual tour, complete with 3-D renderings of the units on iPads.
Circle West, the brainchild of Crescent Resources, depended on students’ desire for eco-friendly housing that boasts a large creative community. The Charlotte, N.C.–based company made sure to frame Circle West as a stylish community, with marketing efforts driven by multimedia and social media emphasizing lifestyle over physical attributes. Interested students could spot the Circle Mini driving around Austin and keep up-to-date on the status of construction via Facebook, all while participating in Circle West events and giveaways.
By June, the 167-unit building, a mix of one- to four-bedrooms, was 92.4 percent leased.