Almost gone are the days of finding your dream house by walking past, and noticing a large, bold, sign outside, saying: For Sale.
Now, 10 minutes into your commute and eight minutes into scrolling on social media, you’re exposed to a range of property images and videos beyond anything you could ever dare to dream of. The same can be said for commercial property, with the online world playing a crucial, and growing, part of the marketing process.
How has the one thing we physically inhabit, gained such a strong virtual presence?
Today, the people we want to target exist beyond their physical addresses. With the birth of social media, the ways in which we network and communicate have multiplied exponentially. It is now possible for everyone and anyone from across the globe to be present and have access to the same content all at once. However, with each platform being tailored towards a different demographic, it’s important to look at data when deciding where to start your marketing endeavours.
Simple statistics suggest how property marketing can be targeted successfully to the right people. According to research, the age bracket of people most likely to invest in property are between 30-50 or 60-64. The average age of first-time buyers in the UK is 34. Looking at the graphs above, we can decipher that we are more likely to find investors that are more interested in commercial property on LinkedIn which is more business focussed. On the other hand, a residential property which is aestheticly pleasing and aimed at the wider public may perform better on a platform such as Instagram where the audience is younger and content is aspirational with lots of opportunity and content options with which to so showcase beautiful properties.
It is important to note that Google is usually the first stop for those on the hunt for a property. Although social media can be a great way to reach a large audience, it is more effective when assisting a website listing which uses SEO (search engine optimisation), rather than as a standalone tactic.
After research found that it takes British adults only 25 seconds to decide whether a property is right for them, Purplebricks in 2021 launched a TikTok house brochure service. By creating 25 second, virtual tours which highlighted the key features of the property and posting these on a fast growing and highly popular platform like TikTok, their marketing made headlines.
Creating a sense of ownership
Over the years, less deals have been made in a boardroom between two men wearing suits, and more deals have completed over a game of golf or brunch in a high-end London bistro. By prioritising innovation, through meticulous event planning and relationship building, property transactions have come to rely on curated experiences for the client.
People may ask: Why did my colleague once receive a £100 John Lewis gift voucher? Why did another receive a hamper filled with wine, a loaf of fresh sourdough bread and olives when attending a launch near Borough Market?
Behind every incentive, there’s a smart sales and marketing tactic in place. I believe to successfully showcase your property; you must sell a story around it. Perhaps the relevance of receiving a hamper with locally sourced items is to entice you with the location and surroundings. Maybe being gifted John Lewis vouchers is so you can buy yourself some necessities when you move into your new property.
Creating memorable experiences, whilst simultaneously building brand awareness, psychologically instils your client with an insight into the life they may have once they complete a deal with you.
It is important to understand that everything that exists physically, now has its own mark in the virtual space. From my perspective, there is only so much that social media can do, and it is important to optimise all marketing methods with a strategy in place which combines the traditional and the modern. One thing that remains important – whether online or offline – is the power of networking and creating shared experiences with your client.
About the author
Bela Pitamber is a member of the London Offices and Marketing & Communications teams at Colliers who specialises in content creation, digital marketing and events.
To contact Bela email, Bela.Pitamber@colliers.com