Growing up, millennials were faced with globalization, digital technology and economic struggles that have given them a very different view as consumers. As the largest generation in history they are now either about to enter, or are in the crux of, their prime spending years.
If you are not familiar with this term, it was coined by educator Marc Prensky. Millennials are the closest thing to being “digital natives”, born into the digital age second only to the fully entrenched Gen Z. They have always had the internet as a tool (and toy) during their life. Chances are you are a “digital immigrant”, the people in generations prior who have had to learn to adapt to the use of the internet and the digital age. As a digital immigrant it is often hard to understand just how organically tied to the internet the millennials feel. Using technology is second nature to them. They begin all of their major (and minor) purchase planning with tons of online research, and this is also how they will begin their house hunting journey.
Ask yourself how the millennials will find you. Do you have a website? Are you providing valuable information online that will help them in the buying process? Do you have testimonials from prior clients to help them see your value? Millennials want instant information about everything including reviews, listings, pricing and how to get in touch with someone who can help them. If you are not providing them with instant information, they’ll move on to an agent who is.
Social networking plays a number of roles in the millennials’ house search. First, it provides them with a tool to shout out to friends and family that they are house hunting. This means people in turn can reach out to them offering advice, congrats and yes, even referrals to the awesome real estate agent who just helped them find their dream home. Second, 34 percent of millennials will use their own social network to find new goods and services before buying. If you are liked on Facebook by tons of past clients, chances are you will end up being the agent of choice for that clients’ network of friends. Considering millennials average between 360 to 649 connections on their Facebook pages alone, that is a lot of potential referrals.
In hand with social networking, new millennials also look to their connections for approval, advice and buy in to the decisions and lifestyle they are leading. Over 70 percent say they will want to get their friends on board with their decision making. It is always good for you to be understanding of this process and to encourage them to use this major resource. Offer to share things with their friends such as professional real estate photos you have of the properties they are considering, or links to virtual tours friends can view. This brings you closer to them and shows you are willing to share what you know.
Being connected is a very important aspect of the millennials’ lifestyle. They want to know what everyone is up to, while sharing their every move with their circle of friends. They will expect you to connect with them both face to face, via social media, by text, cell phone and email. Remaining available and also keeping in touch in a timely manner is an absolute must in order to show millennials you are engaged. From sharing valuable information via a real estate newsletter, to providing them timely responses to their inquiries, staying in touch and remaining connected makes you accessible and desirable.
Millennials are not only obsessed with technology, social media and what their friends are doing, but also are reminded of the economic challenges of the times in which they were raised. This makes them a tech savvy lot looking for value, advice and peer interaction to help drive their decisions. Knowing how to become an important part of their network and meet their need for connectivity will help you provide successful services designed for their very specific needs.
Realtour has the real estate marketing tools that can help you tap into the digital age and reach out to millennials more effectively.