Millennials have quietly carved out the lion’s share of the real estate market. They represent 38 percent of home buyers in 2021, and that percentage grows by the year. As the covid-19 pandemic reshapes how we work and buy homes, marketing effectively to Millennials has become more important than ever.
Younger real estate agents and brokers grew up with these new home buyers, so they share a comfort with mobile technology, text messaging, and social media that earlier generations had to learn. However, the real estate industry is still led by Gen Xers and Baby Boomers, so traditional lead generation methods continue to dominate the market.
In 2021, we now have tools that not only help us market more effectively to Millennials, but also save an unprecedented amount of work-hours with automation. Your real estate signs can now do work for you, generating more leads and pre-screening leads so you spend less time on qualification calls. Younger generations also appreciate a tech-forward approach and will more likely engage with your shop when they see you using these tools.
Real Estate Text Messaging: The Old Signs Versus the New
Before the era of text messages and marketing automation, the real estate sign served a simple function: Give prospective buyers a phone number to call for more information. After initiating the call, the sign no longer played a role in the sales process. Instead, real estate agents were left to field calls throughout the day, sometimes burning precious work-hours to give information about a listing to unqualified leads — or worse, sometimes missing calls from qualified leads.
Today, technology offers better options. The new real estate sign uses a mobile shortcode as the initial touchpoint between leads and a real estate agent. Leads see your real estate sign, send a text to the shortcode on the sign, and immediately receive information about the property. On the agent side, you instantly receive their contact information on your phone. When you call the lead, they already know key details about the property, and the conversation can skip ahead to qualifiers.
Millennials respond well to text message marketing — 76 percent say texting is more convenient and allows them to communicate on their own schedule. According to an OpenMarket survey, three-fourths of Millennials would prefer a text-only phone to one that was voice-only. With Millennials now comprising the largest percentage of home buyers, real estate agents can only benefit from marketing via text.
Building a Real Estate Customer Journey Around Millennials
Digital presence plays a big role in marketing to younger generations. Unless you’re the proprietor of a speakeasy that doesn’t take reservations, Millennials expect to find information about your product or service on the internet — and this includes real estate listings.
With platforms like Zillow already available and known to most Millennial home buyers, real estate agents really need web listings to engage younger leads. Web listings can take time to build and update — time that agents would prefer to spend engaging and qualifying leads. Fortunately, technology can step in yet again and offer a solution.
What if, after texting the mobile shortcode on your (new) real estate sign, a lead was automatically sent a link to a web listing for the property? What if the listing gave them not only key details about the property but also a place to send you their contact information? Best of all — what if that listing could be created or updated in less than a minute using the same platform that manages your mobile shortcodes?
This scenario describes a Millennial-centric customer journey driven by marketing automation. Your first touchpoints use a communication mode that Millennials prefer. You meet their expectations with an internet-based information source. They send you their contact information, and your conversation with them begins three steps into the sales process instead of square one.
Better Lead Generation in a Millennial Market
The ever-growing Millennial dominance of the home buyer market presents forward-thinking real estate agents and brokers with a spectacular opportunity. Those who phase out the traditional customer journey and real estate sign will find themselves generating — and being able to handle — more leads than ever.
Building the tech stack to support this new customer journey can prove complex and expensive. Marketing automation tools range from single-use to comprehensive, all the way from shortcode-only platforms to massive contact resource managers like HubSpot.
DriveBuy Technologies offers a solution designed specifically for real estate agents, brokers, and property managers. We trim off the extra features that yield fewer dividends to the real estate industry and combine mobile shortcodes, web listings, and more under one affordable roof! Click here to learn more.