Traditions of America has been building and selling homes in the Pittsburgh area since 2008. Specializing in 55+ active communities, the builder has delivered thousands of homes in its growing portfolio of communities throughout Pennsylvania. Interest in the Traditions of America’s lifestyle and custom home options skyrocketed with Sewickley Ridge in 2014, its second community in Pittsburgh, which sold out in record time. That momentum continued with Summer Seat in the North Hills and Pinnacle at Adams in Butler County. Through partnership and collaboration with Creating Results, Traditions of America has developed a strategic approach to driving high lead volume and pre-sales activity when launching new communities, with a particular focus on the pre-sales launch event.
1. The Situation
Traditions of America was starting development on its newest community located in Cranberry Township, in Pittsburgh’s North Hills. The community is set on 48 acres of beautiful countryside with 102 homes. Among the many amenities, homeowners will have access to walking trails throughout the community, a clubhouse and a heated pool.
Creating Results was tasked with helping potential buyers visualize life at Cranberry. While the community itself was desirable, a few challenges had to be overcome:
- The site was an empty field.
- The company was actively selling homes at two nearby developments and did not want Cranberry to cannibalize those ongoing sales.
- Traditions of America was entering the market at a higher price point than its other developments, possibly keeping buyers away.
2. The Solution: Targeted Launch Event
As Traditions of America’s long-time strategic marketing partner, Creating Results was able to apply insights from years of marketing metrics to Cranberry’s integrated plan. There were three high-level goals for this launch:
- Raise brand awareness.
- Capture new leads.
- Accelerate purchase decisions.
The integrated marketing elements that worked together to engage prospective homebuyers included:
- community partnerships
- database emails to existing VIPs
- Facebook ads
- print advertising and advertorials
- purchased, targeted email campaign to drive VIPs and registrations for the information session
- targeted direct mail
Creating an integrated approach for Cranberry moved prospects along their buying journey — engaging them through a variety of targeted avenues. Combining offline and online marketing channels has proven very successful with Baby Boomers across the country, and Cranberry was no exception. Direct mail, PR, print and online ads, along with email and a feature on Traditions’ website drove invitees to a custom landing page that was optimized for search and RSVPs (lead capture).
In the past, Traditions of America used multiple, carefully orchestrated pre-opening events that led up to a big grand opening event. However, this time we did something a bit different. Rather than multiple events, we created excitement and urgency by holding one large launch event, a VIP informational session.
The VIP informational launch event built a sense of community by bringing prospective homeowners together in a social setting while giving them a true sense of exclusivity: becoming VIP buyers entitled to special perks like being among the first to choose their homesite. Only those who signed up for a “gator tour” that day were eligible for these perks. The session featured a multimedia presentation introducing the new community, highlighting the award-winning single family home floor plans, resort-style amenities and active lifestyle that future Cranberry homeowners will enjoy.
3. The Results
The first advertorial we ran announcing the development of Traditions of America at Cranberry resulted in over 75 calls in one day! Subsequent ads and advertorials, in coordination with targeted Facebook ads and email campaign, garnered over 500 RSVPs to the VIP information session with 425 attending. During that session, 120 buying units registered for personal appointments with new home counselors. During these appointments, they learned more about the community and attended exclusive tours.
Later that month, Traditions held a premier sales event, where these prospective homeowners were able to place a deposit on a home. In addition, Traditions of America gave them priority selection of homesites. This event resulted in 40 deposits on the 102 homesites — 1.6 times their goal of 25. As of June 30, 30 deposits had converted to contracts, which is 1.5 times their goal of 20!
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