Industry News

Seat-of-the-pants lifestyle marketing

Lessons from early condo development still apply today

This column may not help you make sales directly, but it should make people wonder how you got so smart. We are going deep here about lifestyle marketing and how it got started. Obviously, I don't have the space or stamina to go into detail for every amenity, but here is what developers and retirement communities learned early about swimming pools, boat slips, golf courses and "security." I was a young, clueless project manager for one of the first major condominium developments in the U.S. -- Bay Islands Club in St. Petersburg, Fla. -- with a $1 million yacht club and marina. Few people at the time could pronounce "condominium" or spell it. When we began marketing the units, Realtors started insisting that we needed to heat the pools, beef up our security, and offer more boat slips for sale in addition to the 12 we had installed. I had sold my public relations firm to my developer client -- who was now my boss -- so I knew we needed psychographic researc...