In the last five years, Generation Y—more commonly known as millennials—have become the majority of today’s homebuyers. Whether you are a new agent or a seasoned broker, marketing to this group is vital for success.
The first step to appealing to this generation is understanding their place in the current market. According to the National Association of REALTORS® Home Buyers and Sellers Generational Trends Report 2020, millennials made up 36% of the buyers share last year. Boomers came in a close second at 33%, followed by Gen Xers at 23%. It was also reported that 86% of younger millennials and 52% of older millennials were first-time homebuyers, the largest of all generational groups.
When it comes to shopping for a home, this generation is tech-savvy, utilizing online listing services and social media in their home search. In fact, 83% of millennials used the internet to search for properties as their first step in the home-buying process. This is why your online presence and a millennial-focused marketing strategy should be your top priority.
For agents who are looking to build their lead generation and take on the most prominent group in the market today, there are many ways you can appeal to this new generation of homebuyers.
Keep Up With the Latest Technology
From video to virtual reality, millennials are obsessed with the newest and latest tech available. For those who are searching for new homes—and have every search option at their fingertips—finding a real estate agent who utilizes these tools is a priority. Though some older millennials will take a reference from family and friends, most young millennials will only reach out about a property after seeing it online, with photos being the most important feature. Be sure to hire a professional photographer and consider offering virtual tours of your listings, including aerial shots using drones. This will allow your potential clients to tour your properties anytime, anywhere and on their schedule.
Be Accessible On- and Offline
With a generation that depends on instant gratification, it is important to be accessible to these clients at almost any time of the day. Of course, social media is a great tool when it comes to constant communication, as you can respond to comments, questions and inquiries immediately. However, social media is not the only form of communication. Be prepared to respond to texts, calls and emails, as well as meeting on video calls. Because so many in this generation are shaping their work and home lives to fit their lifestyle, a traditional nine-to-five schedule may not work for them. However, realistically, being available 24/7 is impossible. Consider hiring a virtual assistant to help with overnight inquiries, use an AI chatbot to answer frequently asked questions or even put together a reference guide that clients and leads can easily download for reference on your off-hours.
Share Positive Reviews and Testimonials
No matter how much you choose to boast about yourself and your business success, most millennials will only work with someone they can trust and who they feel is authentic. To showcase that you are trustworthy, consider sharing reviews and testimonials from previous clients who can offer these potential leads many reasons why you will be the right agent to work with. Of course, you want to be sure to grab—and keep—their attention. Because video is the most viewed form of content online, ask your former clients if they could record their testimonials and get permission to share across your social media or on your website. This will not only illustrate your ability as an agent, but will also come across to this generation as genuine and authentic, which, in this day and age, is vital for any business success.
Use Social Media Strategically
Because many millennials aren’t sitting at home reading a newspaper, your online presence is essential. If you haven’t already, be sure to incorporate social media into your marketing strategy as soon as possible. Though many agents already utilize these platforms, there are still many who do not use it to its full potential. The content you share must be relevant, educational and entertaining to this group, and for this generation especially, it is important to understand the type of content you share on each platform. For example, Facebook and LinkedIn are both great platforms to share videos, especially those glowing testimonials, as well as educational articles, such as the content you will find through RISMedia’s ACESocial. Instagram, on the other hand, is all about visuals. Whether you post a virtual tour of a property or photos of a listing with superior staging and styling, be sure the post is visually appealing. When done right, social media can be your business’s best friend.
As millennials continue to grow as the top homebuyers in today’s market, so should your marketing strategy. Though you may have to put a little more thought and time into your online marketing strategy, it will be worth the effort to gain a millennial client base. This is a powerful target market who are constantly looking to connect and learn. So if you’re looking to take your business into the future with success, meaningful relationships and opportunities for more leads and transactions from the most prominent group in the market, be sure your marketing appeals to the millennial generation.
Paige Brown is RISMedia’s content editor. Email her your real estate news ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org.