Location, location, location—the key to real estate success—seemed a potential problem for TROY Boston, a rental building planned for the city’s South End neighborhood. The site stood across from a gas station and homeless shelter and next to a highway overpass, hardly a spot young entrepreneurs and professionals dream of as a hip place to call home. So the developer hired a creative marketing/advertising team to go after prospects (not at the site, but in a variety of locations where prospects congregated) and developed a campaign based on the tag line “The South End’s New Modern Classic.”
The team rented a food truck that it transformed into a cool leasing center with black-and-gold decor and the hash tag #MeetTROY. The vehicle roamed the city to find tenants, and people flocked to the truck and posted their images on Facebook and Instagram.
Since the building’s completion, the marketing team has continued its interactive approach. After noticing that residents were taking sunset photos from the rooftop deck, it launched #SunsetOfTroy to encourage them to post their photos for the chance to win prizes. Another campaign has invited local businesses and organizations to have artists, fitness instructors, chefs, and musicians host events and cross-promote one another.
The building’s occupancy has reached almost 94%, and its two retail spaces are leased. Meanwhile, the South End has gained more new development, including a Whole Foods Market, and has earned a 95 Walk Score. Success has offered a twist on the adage, “Build it, and they will come”: Sometimes, you first must reach out and find them.