The Demand Solutions Blog

It’s the (Revenue Management) Strategy, Stupid!

Posted by Dom Beveridge on Aug 14, 2019 11:03:51 AM

You reach an age when everything reminds you of something in the past, often for reasons that aren’t immediately obvious. A few weeks ago I was talking to a seasoned pricing and revenue management (PRM) practitioner, and I found myself reminded of an old political slogan.

Most readers of this blog are probably too young to remember the 1992 US general election. But after Bill Clinton won it, it came to light that the mantra “It’s the economy, stupid,” had been drilled into campaign staff. The slogan was intended to remind them never to stray from the core theme of the campaign, which was the plight of the American worker. An overarching strategy begat an overarching message that dominated an ultimately successful campaign.

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Topics: Revenue Management, pricing and revenue management, Future

7 Reasons Why There Ain’t Nothing Like a Downturn

Posted by Donald Davidoff on Jul 30, 2019 12:07:11 PM

A few weeks ago, I wrote about some of the core skills of Pricing and Revenue Management (PRM) and how those skills have diminished in the industry talent pool during the last decade. As I explained - using Warren Buffett’s playful metaphor about tides and skinny-dipping - it’s relatively easy to deliver growth in a generally growing market. Skillful, difference-making PRM professionals are adept in delivering upside even in less favorable market conditions.

Nobody likes downturns, but having been in multifamily PRM for more than 20 years, I can attest to the stress-test that they impose on PRM capabilities and practitioners. If your pricing managers haven’t been pricing for at least 10 years, then they have never dealt with a softening market. That’s true whether they’re internal employees, associates of your third-party fee manager or serve on the staff on a pricing services team that is offered by your pricing software vendor.

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Topics: multi-family housing, Multifamily Trends, Future

The Next Big Thing in Multifamily Revenue Management

Posted by Dom Beveridge on Apr 23, 2019 9:42:19 AM

Pricing and Revenue Management (PRM) in multifamily turned 18 years old this year. For those interested, the first-ever deployment of a PRM system took place in February 2001 at the Hunters Run apartment complex in Austin, TX. When we sat down recently with 20 multifamily executives to discuss the industry outlook towards 2020 and beyond, we invited them to provide their perspectives on the current state of PRM.

We discuss the results of our research in greater detail in our 20 for '20 white paper. Below we have summarized the feedback that we received on possible future PRM advancements and areas of opportunity.  We found that PRM system-specific feedback fell into two broad categories: how to improve the current models; and more radical improvements and future direction.   

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Topics: pricing and revenue management, Multifamily Trends, Future

Multifamily’s Last Technological Inflection Point

Posted by Dan Amedro on Apr 9, 2019 8:15:00 AM

Since we published the findings of our 20 for ‘20 research, we have found a broad consensus that multifamily technology is at a technology inflection point, the like of which we have not seen since the 1999-2004 timeframe. During that period pricing and revenue management, web-based property management systems and resident and prospect portals all came to market at once. Dan Amedro was CIO at Archstone from 1997 through 2012. He not only had a front seat to all those changes but as often in the driver’s seat. We asked him to reflect on that time in the industry. As you read this, we think you’ll agree that the experience 15-20 years ago provides a great map to help navigate technology today.

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Topics: Multifamily Trends, Technology, Future, Change Management

How the Multifamily Technology Environment is Changing

Posted by John Helm on Apr 1, 2019 11:40:00 AM

As we were researching our new white paper, 20 for ‘20 - we learned about the multifamily technologies that are currently top of mind from the 20 senior executives who we interviewed. As we mention in the white paper, multifamily is at a technology tipping point, the like of which we have not seen since the late 1990s. This time, however, there seem to be some differences in the way that the industry is approaching new technologies.

Guest Blog by John Helm - Managing Director of Real Estate Technology Ventures

Real estate technology has significantly matured over the past few years, with seismic shifts in resident preferences changing the adoption of technology. Increasingly tech-savvy, digitally-native residents have the same expectations of their living experiences as they have for all other services they consume.

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Topics: Technology, Future

Why Short and Long-Term Priorities Aren't the Same for Multifamily Leaders

Posted by Dom Beveridge on Mar 27, 2019 9:13:44 AM

After a decade of unprecedented growth, the multifamily cycle is hard to predict, as each new year of growth moves us further beyond historical norms. Our industry has lately acquired the habit of starting each year wondering if this will be the one where the bull run comes to an end. When we interviewed 20 executives at the end of 2018 for our 20 for ’20 white paper, we were keen to understand they saw the next few years and how that impacted their priorities.

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Topics: Multifamily Trends, Future

Multifamily Talent and Culture: When People Issues Align

Posted by Andy Helmer on Mar 12, 2019 11:01:10 AM

As we were researching our new white paper, 20 for ‘20 - we asked senior multifamily operators about a range of issues, including recruitment and retention of talent. 2018 was a challenging year, and leaders repeatedly cited culture as a lever in an increasingly competitive employment market. It reminded us of an organization that exists to address a social issue - homelessness - while simultaneously providing a source of new candidates to multifamily operators. Shelters to Shutters is an organization that partners with the multifamily industry to transition people out of homelessness.

Guest Blog By Andy Helmer, CEO of Shelters to Shutters.

In an unusually challenging market for talent, it makes sense to seek new sources of employees. At Shelters to Shutters we work with a network of partners to provide a private industry solution to a public social issue - homelessness. We find that many people are surprised at the difference multifamily companies can make to this problem and by the potential benefits of being part of the solution.

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Topics: Multifamily Trends, Future

20 for '20 - A New Perspective on Multifamily Leadership

Posted by Donald Davidoff on Mar 6, 2019 12:00:25 PM

This week we released our much-anticipated white paper, 20 for '20: 20 Conversations with Senior Executives About the Outlook for 2020 and Beyond. For those of you who hadn’t heard about it, we interviewed 20 operations and technology executives at the end of 2018 to get their perspectives on the state of the industry and their own priorities.

We felt that by contrasting our 20 interviewees' current priorities with priorities for the next few years, we could gain and share insight into the outlook to 2020 and beyond. We’ll be discussing some of the findings in more detail on this blog over the coming weeks. But today, aside from making sure you know it’s now available for download, I thought I would share what motivated us to put in the many hours of research and to invest in writing this white paper.

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Topics: Multifamily Trends, Technology, Future

From Imagination to Implementation – MICA in Review

Posted by Dom Beveridge on Feb 12, 2019 10:49:52 AM

As long-standing supporters of the annual AIM conference in Southern California, we had been looking forward to the launch of its south-eastern sister conference – MICA (Multifamily Innovation Conference Atlanta) – which took place last week.

The inaugural MICA event promised a showcase for innovation in one of the nation’s multifamily industry hotbeds, and it didn’t disappoint. An impressive crowd experienced a program that ranged from the creative, cutting edge of marketing to the nuts and bolts of implementing the innovations that residents are increasingly expecting of multifamily providers. 

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Topics: Multifamily Trends, Future, Short-Term Rentals

The Multifamily Executive's Quick Access Guide to Artificial Intelligence

Posted by Donald Davidoff on Jun 15, 2018 4:00:00 PM

There’s a lot of buzz about artificial intelligence (AI) these days, so much so that it’s hard to separate the reality from the hype. Add to that the fact that multifamily housing (MFH) is typically a technology laggard, and it’s easy to assume that MFH executives can afford to wait a few years to see how things shake out before worrying at all about AI. Yet AI is potentially applicable to any business process that has measurable data inputs and a complex process to get to outcomes that are also measurable—a description that matches many MFH processes.

Not surprisingly, AI has been accompanied by a tremendous amount of hype, myth and confusion. To help MFH executives makes some sense of AI, we’ve put together a quick guide on the key areas where AI can (and often should) impact your operation. We highlight:

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Topics: Multifamily Trends, Technology, Future, Artificial Intelligence