Hale Pawa‘a (O‘ahu)
Headquartered on the U.S. mainland, this Real Estate Investment Trust has owned and managed medical office buildings in Hawai‘i since 2003. With a limited history of doing business in the state, this REIT faced several challenges with a new building it was planning for Honolulu: the lack of local name/brand recognition for the project and the company’s need to better understand the local market, including its political, cultural and community landscapes.
Before turning the first shovelful of dirt, the REIT asked CommPac both to familiarize the community with the company (thereby minimizing potential opposition to the construction of the building) and assist with its marketing efforts.
To facilitate outreach to the community, CommPac recommended developing a brand for the building that was consistent with the vision of a Class-A office property. To that end, CommPac convened a Native Hawaiian cultural resources group to develop a culturally appropriate name. The name chosen referred to the area’s history as a location for sheltering canoes. CommPac then created a logo that embodied the symbolism of the name.
A community-based website was also launched where those interested could learn more about the project and submit comments and questions. CommPac developed and implemented plans for a groundbreaking/blessing event while also securing favorable media coverage for the event.
CommPac then worked closely with the project’s leasing agents to design a high-end marketing brochure that is now the centerpiece of the leasing and marketing effort. The brochure became the inspiration for transitioning the website to an interactive marketing tool that allows prospective tenants to learn more about the project, download renderings and floor plans, view the status of construction through a webcam, and leave contact information for the leasing agents.
CommPac’s outreach efforts assuaged the surrounding community’s concerns about the project and secured the support of officials during the permitting phase. In addition, the favorable media coverage, combined with the marketing brochure and websited, has generated “buzz” about the project, as evidenced by the high number of leasing inquiries the company has received from prospective tenants.