Why Effective Communication is the best way to retain tenants


There are multiple factors which strengthen tenant loyalty and effective communication is the glue that binds them. To encourage tenants to stay for the long term, property managers must create a welcoming environment. Not only must the physical building be attractive to tenants but ensure all those who work there are more productive, informed and engaged.

If there is a communication void, where property managers feel out of reach, none of this can be achieved. Developing clear and open communication channels builds trust, enhances engagement and drives efficiencies – a recipe that ultimately leads to higher retention rates and property values.

Communication pitfalls

However, for larger developments, especially shopping centres, communicating with hundreds of tenants is often considered a daunting, difficult task. That’s because, in many cases, there isn’t a consistent strategy in place, creating a mountain for property managers to climb. Various tools are used to try and reach tenants, including time-consuming manual processes. 

This also tends to result in a blanket approach to communication, instead of more customised, targeted information.
Without the right communication tools in place, the productivity of tenants can be impacted as well. Any questions or maintenance requests for example, can take much longer to be addressed, increasing the risk of frustration and damaging relationships.

Mall of America is a case in point. As the largest retail and entertainment destination in the United States, it is home to more than 520 tenants across 5.6 million sq ft. Prior to transforming its communications strategy, the same messages were sent to every tenant and contact details had to be manually updated. Any vital information was communicated via print outs, hand delivered by mall employees to every store, restaurant and attraction. The limitations of this approach came to a head when Mall of America hosted a huge super bowl event, attracting more than 1.5 million guests. This required crucial information such as changes to opening hours and transport locations to be communicated to all tenants. At a time when managers had to juggle many other tasks, this ineffective, manual communication method wasted significant time and resources.

A streamlined approach

To overcome these challenges, a single source of communication is essential – and that is best achieved through digital technology. Recognising this opportunity, Mall of America adopted the Mallcomm platform. Bringing key information into one place, Mallcomm makes messaging faster and more efficient. Contact details are easy to find and memos and other documents can be sent at the touch of a button. Individual tenants or a whole community can be contacted more effectively and in real-time, the technology will show who has read the messages.

As well as more effective messaging, Mallcomm provides a tool for communicating tailored information which enhances engagement, sales, and a sense of community. Details of special offers, events and job vacancies can all be promoted using the technology as well as a shopping centre’s latest news. These benefits are underlined by the Mall of America’s IT Director. Speaking about the impact of Mallcomm, she said: “Although it sounds like hyperbole, Mallcomm has been a game-changer at Mall of America. It has greatly increased our effectiveness when communicating with our tenants.

“For the first time in our 28-year history, tenants have a single resource which they can access to receive standard documentation, timely messages and helpful information. They can also send questions directly to mall management to help them with any issues they may be facing.“Another clear benefit for our mall stores, and the thousands of people that work in this building, are the sales that have resulted from the ’deals’ that are posted on Mallcomm by our retailers. This option raises awareness of discounts and sales – and helps to drive internal customers into the stores to increase sales volume. Very quickly we saw great adoption of this feature by our tenants and in no time hundreds of deals were posted, much to the delight of our employees.”

Adding value

Thanks to digital technology like Mallcomm, improving communication with multiple tenants is much simpler than property managers may realise. Tenants can quickly benefit from more effective messaging, information and updates, enhancing their experience and boosting retention.

If you would like to discover how Mallcomm can support your tenant retention, click the button below to speak to our team.