Pay-per-click digital advertising is essential for multifamily marketers to promote their apartments on social media, websites, and, most notably, Google as the primary search engine, with targeted advertisements incorporating text, images, and videos highlighting a property’s appearance, units, and amenity features.

Digital ads aim to increase a community’s online visibility and brand awareness across multiple platforms toward renters genuinely interested in those apartments, as that helps improve the quality of the traffic to the community’s website and, ultimately, increase lease conversions.

Hey, I’m Michael from RentVision, an apartment marketing company that helps thousands of communities like yours get better-qualified leads with an automated pay-per-click solution called Predictive Advertising (shameless plug!).

While we’re not branding experts like Stacey and her team at Zipcode Creative, we believe that multifamily marketers who care about owning a strong, cohesive apartment brand can create a powerful online search presence that wows renters and benefits leasing by prioritizing PPC ads in their marketing strategy.

Your brand empowers your digital ad campaigns and overall online presentation, allowing you to leverage your property’s appearance, logos, color scheme, and more to resonate with prospective renters and keep your apartments in mind throughout their search. Let’s look at what combining brand and PPC advertising can do for you:

Strong Apartment Brand + Apartment PPC = Trust

Let’s start with the big picture. It’s sometimes easy to forget that choosing which apartment to live in is a life-changing, financially impactful decision for your renters. 

To feel confident about their selection, they must trust that your apartments meet their preferences and deliver the resident experience you promise.

Of course, your brand tells your community’s story by describing to renters how your apartment features and lifestyle benefit them and how they differ from your peers. Your brand, if done correctly, is a means by which you instill trust in renters. 

However, for your community’s brand to help renters develop more trust and impact leasing performance, it is best to pair it with a strong digital advertising strategy.  

Knowing initial impressions are huge, imagine someone’s reaction when, at the beginning stage of their apartment search, they go to Google looking for a community like yours. They see an ad for your community that ‘pops’ off the top of the search results page (and top rankings in the organic and local listings). 

You can gain that opportunity by pairing a strong apartment brand with pay-per-click advertisements targeting specific or relevant keywords your typical renters search for online.

That authoritative presence in Google establishes a strong level of trustworthiness that will make renters feel more confident about pursuing a lease in your community.

It also helps renters to feel better about selecting your apartments when you actively show you care about your community’s overall online presentation and make it easily discoverable with advertisements across Google, YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Tik-Tok and other large PPC platforms.

From their perspective, they equate the care you put into your marketing presence to you also caring about their needs and living experience.

Plus, the more exposure you provide renters to your community’s name, colors, property images, and other assets of your brand online in photo or video display ads during their decision-making process, the more familiarity they gain in your community. And the more familiar they are to your apartments, the more they begin to trust that yours is best for them.

Establishing trust is the power you have when you put effort into your community’s brand and pay-per-click ads.

Apartment branding drives specialization

Communities intentionally curating their brand’s presence typically have a better definition of their ideal resident and thus develop messaging and a visual identity that resonates with those renters. 

This is what we mean by specialization—your brand makes you, well, you. You’re telling renters, “You can trust us to provide the lifestyle and resident experience you’re looking for.” 

A great apartment brand that achieves this specialization also elevates your PPC campaigns because, truthfully, many apartments are the same. 

Believe it or not, your community isn’t the only one with a pool or Pelotons in the clubhouse. While those are features you’d undoubtedly want prospective residents to know about, they don’t move the needle for everyone.

Prospective renters will choose to rent an apartment from a community that appears to know and understands their needs above amenities like a stationary bike. That is, in essence, the foundation and purpose of your brand, and utilizing such a brand throughout your marketing strategy—especially in your PPC campaigns—will drive home to renters the story about how your apartments meet their specific needs.

That is how your apartments, though they may be similar to other properties, stand out apart and above the competition in PPC advertisements.

Apartment PPC drives leasing performance

Since you’re also a multifamily marketer, and your ultimate objective is to generate leads and leases, you must also leverage your community’s brand to get it in front of renters at critical stages throughout their apartment search. 

That’s why PPC advertising is essential. You gain little from your apartment’s brand if it’s difficult for renters to discover it.

Every renter goes through three stages during their apartment search:

  1. The ‘Awareness’ stage, or “Hey, I need to move out and find an apartment.”

  2. The Consideration stage is when you say, “Okay, here are a couple of apartment communities available that meet what I’m looking for.”

  3. There’s the ‘Decision’ stage, where one final community has emerged as the favorite. At that point, the renter will contact the community and begin the touring, applying, and leasing process.

PPC advertisements drive visibility for your apartments throughout each distinct stage

Sometimes, you can expedite someone’s selection process with a powerful combination of targeted ads and strong apartment branding that meets the right renters at the right time. 

But since everyone’s leasing journey varies in time, you must also consider that you’ll need PPC campaigns running on multiple platforms simultaneously to maintain visibility and push more qualified traffic to your community website. 

Getting started with Apartment PPC campaigns

Now, we’ve gone long enough describing the positive impact of combining your apartment’s brand with pay-per-click advertising that you’re probably wondering, “Okay, so how do we actually do this?!”

Beginning (or just optimizing) a PPC strategy for your apartments is pretty hard, so I want to share a couple of other helpful resources that go into further detail and make the process seem less daunting:

Start there to get more depth into starting with PPC advertising. But while we’re here, let’s go over a couple of easy tips to remember as you combine brand and PPC into your apartment’s strategy:

  1. Know what search terms people use to discover your community’s website.

You can use Google Search Console for free to see what visitors to your website searched for in Google to find your apartment community’s website. This will help you establish a list of keywords to possibly target in your PPC campaigns. One tip is to avoid using branded descriptors in keywords you would target; truthfully, you won’t get many renters searching terms like ‘upscale apartments with chic amenities in downtown Denver’. However, those descriptors, like ‘upscale’, would be more effective in ad copy. 

  1. Use your display campaigns to highlight your community’s best offerings.

Your photo and video display ads are the time and place where you want to highlight the very best of your community. Your clubhouse, exteriors, Pelotons, and pool are great features that look great in your PPC display ads; don’t overcomplicate. That said, highlighting those features in your ad campaigns is fine as long as you’re using those things to drive traffic to a website that lets interested renters see the inside of your units. That content moves the needle for renters more than anything as the space they’re ultimately going to live in is essential information they need. 

  1. Have your apartment’s logo, name, and brand visuals in every display ad campaign.

Then, in your display ads, be sure they’re designed to feature your apartment’s name, logo, and brand visuals (even if the primary item displayed is the inside of a unit). This builds recognition for your brand—which sticks in renters’ minds throughout their search in a meaningful way.

  1. Utilize Google Performance Max Campaigns.

Lastly, one easy way to get started with PPC is by utilizing Google’s Performance Max Campaigns feature. Performance max campaigns do a lot of the hard work for you because they use whatever creative assets you give Google (photos/videos of your units, amenities, property, logo) and find the suitable variation of text/visuals that produces the most clicks and traffic to your website on both Google’s Search and Display networks (a.k.a. basically the whole Internet)! Google’s Performance Max Campaigns are excellent options for communities with great visuals and branding.


Ultimately, investing in your apartment’s brand and PPC advertising enhances its online presence, cultivates trust, and drives leasing performance, making it an indispensable component of your marketing strategy.