Sunday, March 27, 2011

Chicken Marketing

Hi World:

This month, I visited three different liquor stores in my neighborhood.  I noticed that all of these stores are using the same pens, stamped with the name of a local apartment complex.  This tells me three things:

1.  We probably drink too much.
2.  If the number of package stores is a sign, everyone in our neighborhood drinks too much.
3.  The local apartment complex marketing guy thinks that drunk people make good tenants

I can appreciate the thought process:  If your tenants are alcoholics, where better to find new tenants than a liquor store? Makes sense, right?

Oh, apartment complex manager, you are so very wrong. 

Here's why:

1.  Do you really want more alcoholics moving in?  Think about it:  Red wine stains on the carpet, people puking in your bushes and ruining the vegetation, constantly having to readjust the PH in the pool because tenants are just too drunk to get out and pee in the appropriate receptacle?

2.  How long do you think the average alcoholic's work tenure is, anyway?  Sure, they are employed when they move in, but before you know it, they get laid off for unspecified reasons (included, but not limited to, being drunk at 9 am staff meetings assuming they make it in for said meetings, getting into fist fights with important clients, and let's not even get into the holiday party debacle.) which will give him more time to hang around the pool but less money with which to pay rent.

3.  Drunk tenants + drunk friends = more pee in the pool.

And that's assuming your pen ploy will work, which it won't.

Here's why:

1.  How many people visiting a liquor store are looking for an apartment?

2.  How many of those people visiting the liquor store and looking for an apartment are coherent enough and/or interested enough to read the very small writing on your pen, memorize or take notes, and then call you later?

I'll give you a hint.  You have a better chance of winning the lottery and getting rid of this sucky apartment complex marketing job.  Seriously, Friend,  people buying alcohol are concerned with several things, such as:

1.  Whether the store sells lime to go with their Corona or whether they will have to make an extra stop, cutting into their drinking time. 

2.  Do these jeans make my butt look big.  Seriously.  Be honest. (note:  Be very very careful)
3.  Which schnapps has the absolute highest alcohol content

4.  How the hair looks

6.  Crap.  Do you sell condoms here?  How about ping pong balls?

Anyone in the liquor store not preoccupied with these issues already owns a house.  Anyone in the liquor store preoccupied with these issues is not in a state of mind to think about apartment choices. 

You see, apartment complex marketing person, those choices are made in the morning. 

Here is a typical scenario:

Jason and Jennifer have happily cohabitated for 8 months.  One Saturday night, Jason attends his good friend, Brad's, bachelor party.  On the way, he stops at the neighborhood liquor store and buys a case of Bud and a bottle of Sambuca.  He has a hard time choosing between the Sambuca and the Jagermeister.  But at least his hair is perfect. 

The party starts out at Brad's apartment, where the case of Bud and multiple other cases of assorted beer are consumed, then moves to a local club, and then a strip joint.  Somewhere along the way, Jason meets Angel and, at that moment in time, Angel does appear to be celestial.  Almost as high as Jason, in fact, and quite enamored of Jason's perfect hair.  Jason and Angel hook up. 

The next morning, Jason is horrified to wake up in Angel's bed.  He looks at Angel.  She looks at him.  Enlightenment happens.  Jason winds his way home, stopping off at Dunkin' Donuts for his hangover vanilla extra extra iced coffee.  He arrives home to find all his belongings on the sidewalk in a, shall we say, untidy pile.  Almost as if they had been thrown there through an open window, which they almost certainly had.

Da dum da dum.

Jason calls Brad.  Brad is no longer engaged, having consumed too much sambuca and, feeling playful, having sent a pic of the lap dance he received to his beloved.  It goes without saying that Brad is not awfully bright. 

Brad and Jason meet up for breakfast at the local diner to commiserate and clear their heads.  Brad and Jason are suddenly homeless.  As this sinks in, the waiter brings their check.  Jason picks up the tab.  As he signs for the check, he heaves a big sigh and says, "Whaddayah say, Dude?  Want to be room mates again?"

Apartment complex marketing guy, do you see where I am going with this? 

And even that is debatable.  Do you think anyone is reading your pen?  The ones you pay fifty cents apiece for?  No.  They really are not.  Except me.  I also pick up random business cards, though, so I'm not a good example.  And I don't need an apartment.

If you really want to pick up some extra tenants, here are some proven strategies:

1.  Loan out your pool for bachelor parties.
2.  Hang out at the local diner
3.  Give hot people a discount.
4.  Pay a referral fee to the hot tenants to bring in more hot tenants
5.  Start a reality show based on the hotness and debauchery of your tenants.

You'll still have to deal with stains, dead vegetation, and public urination, but you seem okay with that.

So, apartment complex marketing guy, while normally I prefer to be paid for my marketing advice, I do have three of your pens in my purse, so let's call it even. 

And by the way, apartment complex marketing guy, could you get rid of the "eye-catching" balloons outside your complex that my kid clamors for every time we drive by?   If you do, I'll stop letting him pee in your pool.  Not that it makes that much of a difference, exept his pee doesn't have the antiseptic advantage of alcohol in it.

Do any of these people look like they need a pen?
 Chicken out