The marketing suite is an essential element of any property marketing campaign – and in today’s ever-competitive market, the pressure to stand out and deliver a truly memorable experience is greater than ever. One of the best ways of doing this is to have a rethink and explore the benefits that interactivity – and joining the dots between the offline and online marketing experience – can provide.
In this post, we run through three of the main drivers behind why developers are increasingly choosing to bring a fresh approach to this stage of the property buying journey.
Create distinction and memorability
With the marketing suite being such a key touchpoint in a potential buyer’s purchase journey, it’s vital to create distinction that will stand out in their mind long after they have left. And in more buoyant cities such as London and Manchester, where new residential developments are coming online all the time, it’s even harder to stand out from the crowd. But if you get it right, the benefits to your sales pipeline and subsequent conversion rates can be huge. So how do you go about cutting through all of that noise and leaving a lasting impression with potential buyers? Here are two top tips to get ahead.
- Consider your setting and staging – the more unique, the better. You want your marketing suite to provide a standout experience that creates affinity from the get-go and really starts to warm buyers up to the idea of living at your development. You might also be mindful that the days of bland prefabs are numbered. So what can you do? If they fit the essence of your development’s branding, temporary build solutions can make for a marketing suite experience that truly sticks in the minds of buyers. In recent years, developers on both the commercial and residential side have used modular units to this effect, with Bruntwood’s pop-up development Hatch being one particularly great example. On the subject of pop-ups, might you want to take your marketing suite ‘on tour’? Vacant retail and office units, with the right staging, can provide brilliant blank-slate backdrops, with the added benefit of being closer to commuter footfall than your site might initially be.
- Provide interactive experiences – engage early to boost brand impact. We know that adding interactivity to digital advertising and signage can make it up to eight times more impactful than static displays, so why aren’t more developers making more of this in their marketing suites? Research from Ocean’s Neuroscience research programme shows that adding features such as Wi-Fi, live streaming, augmented reality and social media interaction to advertising can lead to better peaks in emotional response, increased positivity in emotional response and improvements to the number of brand impacts saved in people’s memories. Augmented reality, 360-degree visual content and social media interactions make for fitting updates to the modern marketing suite experience and allow you to really start engaging, literally, with your potential buyers from this early touchpoint. Some ideas to consider include putting AR-enabled artwork up on the walls of your showhome, or letting people ‘look around’ their new apartment via a 360-degree canvas landing page on your marketing website, both of which give buyers the chance to use their mobile phones to start interacting with your brand.
Refine the digital marketing opportunities
This is a big one: the more forward thought you give to the digital marketing tactics that will follow a potential buyer’s visit to your marketing suite, the more able you will be to tailor what happens in the suite to benefit that process. Capturing customer information and feeding it into sales workflows has always been a key consideration, but smarter developers are now exploring the personalisation possibilities offered up by mobile. Take the above example of giving potential buyers the ability to ‘look around’ apartments using 360-degree visual content. If you show them how to do this on their own phones, you’ll be able to land marketing cookies on their devices, track what they look at on your marketing site and open up the ability to serve personalised content and advertising to them following their visit. This can be especially powerful when it comes to remarketing, because you can show tailored follow-up ads to people based on the homes they have displayed an interest in. So the first-time buyers who browsed two-bed apartments and the empty nesters who looked at duplexes will see social advertising relating to just those unit types, increasing the chances they will come back to your website and progress along the purchase journey.
Join the dots with the living experience
It follows that as parts of the journey which are by their nature truly experiential, your marketing suite and showhome provide the perfect opportunity to deliver an experience synonymous with your development’s brand, giving potential buyers a real flavour of what their eventual living experience will be like. This is another reason why bland, cookie-cutter implementations should be avoided at all costs. Say, for example, you’ve got a development aimed at young, urban buyers and you’re trying to emphasise the cultural credentials of the locale in your marketing messaging. Would it not make sense to ramp this association up in your suite and showhome? You could hang pieces from local artists on the walls, install a landscape model showing local cultural highlights, or stage a photography exhibition. You could even be bold and use the suite as a pop-up performance space, putting on guerilla gigs or art battles. Likewise if you’re trying to get across the peacefulness and wellbeing benefits of a new neighbourhood, you can make your suite all about that lifestyle, with content and programming geared towards residents’ health. Making sure your marketing suite matches your marketing message is a vital step in establishing an authentic experience that is synonymous with what people can expect if they choose to buy a home within your development.
Your offline and online marketing, the interplay between them, and the ability to drive affinity at every possible touchpoint, will be central to the success of your development. Getting things right can really make the difference when it comes to hitting full occupancy within the right timescales.