Cell Site Marketing: What to Watch Out For
Some lease optimization companies offer to “market” property (typically property that already houses cell sites – but not always) to wireless carriers. Steel in the Air does not provide this service. If you are a landowner who wants information on how to get a wireless carrier interested in leasing land that you own, please see our featured article, How To Get a Tower on Your Property. If you are already engaged in a cellular lease with a wireless carrier but would like to attract additional tenants, you may find some of the information below to be helpful.
If one carrier found you, then another one will. Be patient.
If you are already engaged in a wireless lease with a wireless carrier or cell tower company, then your property currently exists in more than one database, including the FCC, with whom carriers are required to register. Additional wireless carriers will contact you when they expand their networks into your area, or if they require additional capacity. They already know where you are and, since you are already party to a cellular lease, you will likely be the first landowner approached when they are ready to expand or augment their existing networks.
We are not in the business of marketing properties – either for a commission or a flat fee.
"Quite simply, the value of marketing properties is negligible, and we are not in the business of taking money from our clients without producing something in return."
If would be fairly easy for us to sign hundreds of new clients each year (for a fee), then do nothing but sit back and wait for wireless carriers to express interest – and that is basically what any company who offers to market your property or cell tower is going to do.
Only in the rarest of instances, will we advise clients to proactively expand their tenant base, and only then if we are certain that the interest is already viable and that any “marketing” efforts will be successful.
Cell tower leasing and rooftop antenna leasing is a complicated business. The only possible way marketing could be effective is in the case where the company who wishes to market your lease represents a wide base of wireless carriers who desire to expand their networks into your particular area. In addition, only tower owners can market cell sites, so if you are not the tower owner, nothing can be done.
If you’ve received a solicitation from a third party company who suggests that they will market your property or that they have a carrier ready to lease your tower, they are probably interested in something else entirely – a lease buyout. Their “offer” is a ploy to get you to respond. If the company who contacts you is site acquisition firm, then understand that they are working for the carriers. The offer letter you receive will state specifically which carriers they have “lined-up” to lease your property or rooftop – but we caution against getting your hopes up.
In the world of cell tower leasing, patience is a virtue. There is no use spinning your marketing wheels in an attempt to entice a carrier to use a property that doesn’t fit their network infrastructure needs. And since that information is proprietary, you’ll never be able to find out if your site meets those specifications. So rather than giving up 25% or 50% of your future revenue, we recommend that you just sit tight.
If you are a property owner who is currently party to a cellular lease, then please know we are happy to answer any questions you might have.