Millennials are a tricky bunch to connect with, aren’t they? They’re described as both fickle and fiercely brand loyal. They are accused of having minimal attention spans yet an impressive laser focus when it comes to their passions. Marketers cannot underestimate the power of social media, yet Millennials’ buying decisions are often based on recommendation from their peers.
To complicate matters further, it’s no longer simply addressing a need, it’s now establishing a need. Millennials have grown accustomed to taking matters into their own hands and distancing themselves from traditional processes and channels.
With the unique challenges that come with this group, is it worth your effort? According to recent stats and the National Association for Realtors®, the answer is yes. Read our last blog post, Real Estate Marketing to Millennials: NAR Partners with Modern Family, for more on that.
The first and most important thing to keep in mind when real estate marketing to Millennials is that It’s no longer a matter of building recognition – it’s building a connection. Here are our top tips for doing just that:
- Do not jump into sales mode right away.
Most millennials consider a salesperson or sales-speak a “turn off” until they are in the middle or end stages of the purchasing process – after they have performed independent research. This presents a couple of unique opportunities and challenges for real estate professionals. The obvious opportunity is that you can get in front of them without cold calling or foot pounding. Instead, provide valuable home buying information via social media marketing and your personalized real estate newsletters. The challenge, of course, is fighting your well-honed instinct to jump into sales mode as soon as you see a spark of interest. Instead, allow them to do their research and encourage them to utilize you as the valuable information source that you are. Additionally, make sure that your online reputation is strong. Online reviews are second only to referrals from their peers.
- Be authentic and offer genuine content.
At first thought, this tip seems like an easy one to follow. This is because “be authentic” is easily misinterpreted as “be yourself”. In this sense, however, being authentic means focusing on displaying genuine content. Take a selfie at the home you’re selling. If you think your dog would love the backyard, mention it in a tweet. If you have a mild coffee addiction, start posting about the coffee shops in the different neighbourhoods that you represent or visit. Create Pinterest boards that showcase your interests while also providing information to help millennials in the home buying process.
- Go visual on social media.
Millennials love visual content and as a real estate professional, you hold a distinct advantage above many other professions. There are virtually endless photo ops within the homes and neighbourhoods you visit. Take advantage of this while honing your amateur phone photography skills. And don’t be afraid to show pictures outside of the real estate world (see tip above). Love gardening, running 10ks or street art? Share it visually via photos and/or videos!
- Appeal to values.
More than any other generation to-date, Millennials want to align themselves with companies and people that share their values. This is just one of the reasons why it is so important to align yourself with causes, particularly in the communities you are farming. Social awareness and activity should be an active component in any geographic farming plan.
- Appeal to FOMO.
When you create marketing messaging for Millennials, it is important to remember that a huge motivational factor is Fear of Missing Out (FOMO). Once you have proven your relevance and built a relationship with your Millennial client, it is important to help them leap into buying that home – an extra scary decision for the many whom are first-time home buyers. Appealing to FOMO through strategic messaging and communication will help you accomplish this. Do houses in this neighbourhood typically get snapped up quickly? Were there several other showings today? Did your photo of this house on Instagram get 1,200 likes? Let them know!
These are our top 5 tips for real estate marketing to Millennials. If you found them useful or would like to add to the conversation, please leave your comment below.