This year will not be the year of artificial intelligence, but you’re sure going to hear a lot about it.
While AI, augmented reality and things like blockchain work on closing the gap between market promise and market reality, plenty of other important trends are set to hit the Australian real estate sector in 2020.
Here are four you’ll want to know about before it’s too late.
1. EMAIL UNSUBSCRIBES WILL RISE, NO MATTER HOW GOOD YOUR LETTERS ARE
According to researchers, more than 50 per cent of emails sent today get marked as spam, and unsubscribe rates are going up.
The reason people unsubscribe, however, remains the same: too many emails, lack of relevance, lack of legitimacy as a brand.
Consumers expect businesses to have marketing emails right by now.
As a channel, email marketing is decades old and perhaps over-relied upon.
Unsurprisingly, consumers have had enough.
Now, they’re only willing to hear from businesses that respect their inboxes.
So in 2020, plan to up your email game.
Send, at most, one marketing email a week, and make sure you’re focusing on producing beautifully polished and highly relevant emails for your audience.
2. IT’S GETTING EASIER TO BE GREEN
Millennials have now become the largest market demographic, comprising 44 per cent of the Australian working economy in 2019 (McCrindle, 2019).
Of millennials, 31 per cent rate climate change and the environment as their top concern (Deloitte, 2019).
And contrary to the avocado stereotype, millennials are 30 per cent more likely to save regularly than their parents, and 80 per cent of them have a budget, compared to 66 per cent of their Gen X and Baby Boomer parents (www.aph.gov.au, 2019).
What this amounts to is a strong trend towards the environment, and money saving preferences in the market in 2020.
The time has come to ask how you can help. Perhaps you help landlords make greener choices by partnering with solar providers or smart water devices.
Can you encourage better environmental practices among the properties on your rent roll, such as a policy to let lawns die in drought periods?
Get educated, go green, and grab those millennial advocates.
3. CONTENT MATTERS EVEN MORE
Someone will look at your website, on average, between nine and 12 times before deciding to do business with you.
Consumers now do even more research online, and in that research mix, they’re likely to be looking for articles to read related to your business.
So if your agency doesn’t have a blog, it’s time to get one.
Use content to educate your customers and communicate your expertise to them.
Generally speaking, your audience is more forgiving of imperfect content on your website than via email. So get writing.
4. AND SO DO USER REVIEWS
Between 20 and 50 user reviews will cement a company’s reputation as trustworthy, even if some of those reviews are negative (in fact, especially if some are somewhat negative).
According to Zendesk, reviews influence 88 per cent of buyers in their buying decision.
Fan and Fuel Group says 92 per cent of consumers hesitate to purchase if there are no customer reviews.
The reality is that trust in brands and businesses online is at an all-time low.
Customers trust each other more than they trust you.
Still, that doesn’t have to be a bad thing.
Building more business in 2020 might be as simple as campaigning for more of your clients to leave a review about your agency online.
They shouldn’t be gushing essays either – a smattering of good reviews with the odd middling or poor review is better for establishing trust in your business than the too-good-to-be-true promise of 100 per cent, five-star reviews.