AvalonBay hopes similar marketing events like this concert held at AVA Queen Anne in Seattle will attract Gen Y renters to AVA H Street in Washington, D.C.

AvalonBay hopes similar marketing events like this concert held at AVA Queen Anne in Seattle will attract Gen Y renters to AVA H Street in Washington, D.C.

When AvalonBay unveiled two new brands earlier this year, it launched marketing campaigns with highly targeted renters in mind.

The Arlington, Va.-based company's new “eaves” brand focused on the suburban rental market, while “AVA” targeted Gen Y renters living in urban centers.

So far, marketing efforts for AVA properties in Northern California and Seattle have been successful in generating high numbers of leasers. And AvalonBay is now hoping to bring some of that momentum to Washington, D.C. with its new AVA H Street property by activating a marketing campaign that is highly “social,” according to Kurt Conway, senior vice president of brand strategy and marketing.

The idea of being social will extend throughout the marketing campaign, as well as the property itself. “Through its location in the heart of the H Street district and the social spaces of the community, which serve as an extension of a resident's apartment and through amenities in the lobby loft and outdoor courtyard, [we’ll offer] places to both "chill" and socialize,” Conway says. “We’ll also reach the target audience online through online listing services, blogs, social media, and local outreach to the H Street market.”

Conway says AvalonBay hopes to attract plenty of “young, urban socials” with that campaign. And he thinks unique features at H Street, including bike repair stations, bike parking and electric car charging stations, as well as units designed for roommate-style living (with identical sized bedrooms, bathrooms and closets in “egalitarian” style)  will be easy to market to the Gen Y demographic.

With a heavy focus on local events and happenings in the community, the marketing for H Street will be consistent with the rest of the AVA brand. For instance, at its AVA Queen Anne development in Seattle, AvalonBay hosted a rock concert and offered those attending a goodie bag of branded snacks like organic granola bars, and Tchotchkes.  

The focus is the same in D.C. “We’ll be integrating into the neighborhood, participating in events like the H Street festival and co-sponsoring events with local merchants,” Conway says.