Published on March 8, 2022
We’re in the midst of one of the hottest real estate markets ever. Some developers can’t build fast enough to keep up with demand, while others struggle with a lack of land parcels for their next projects. Developers, private communities, resort communities, and country club community leadership are seeing homes selling at record-breaking highs. But that doesn’t mean it’s time to stop generating and nurturing leads—and laying the foundation now to attract the right target audience. By doing so, home builders and development sales leadership will be set up to succeed at a time where rising prices may impact momentum soon.
Recent PCR research revealed that 86% of homebuyers said “within 2 years” when asked how soon they planned to buy. Adults between 55 and 64 years old are just at the beginning stages of their searches for a maintenance-free, active community that aligns with their plans for retirement living. What this means is they are looking, browsing, and taking their time right now before they pull the trigger in the future.
“Regardless, of how well the real estate market is trending, developers can never have too many leads,” says Laurie Andrews, president of Cotton & Company. “With three decades of real estate marketing experience behind us, we have learned that markets rise and fall, and homebuyers can take as long as three years to move and/or purchase a home.”
Bottom line: All leads are extremely valuable to builders and developers, especially with market conditions changing so quickly. Even though some of your current leads may not immediately become present-day buyers doesn’t mean they won’t be ready to move forward with a purchase when the market transitions into the next cycle.
In the real estate industry, marketing trends, information, and details are constantly evolving. With more homebuyers researching their options from remote locations, now’s the time to really consider where your marketing will have the most impact.
Without overspending, marketing leaders can repurpose some of their budget to put towards image-building channels such as video presentations, 3D tours, ADA compliance, and establishing a stronger social media and digital marketing presence. Partnering with agencies and websites to boost SEO and organic search results for your communities and property listings can also pay dividends in the not-too-distant future when the real estate market cools.
The PCR research we mentioned earlier also discovered that health and wellness amenities are huge among community homebuyers these days. So, taking the time now to create new brochures and videos, and update your photos and imagery to put the “lifestyle” your community offers front and center will work to take your brand to the next level as you separate yourself from the competition.
“Take a fresh look at your brand and how you’re presenting your community through your web presence,” says Laurie. “Psychological changes happen in your market. Review your audiences based on current market conditions and then pivot your strategies towards communicating more effectively and visually to those specific target audience members.”
Cotton & Company CEO, Stephann Cotton, observes that “nobody has a crystal ball of what’s to come or how long this hot streak is going to last. As a result, it’s important for builders, developers, and master-planned communities to keep their marketing efforts steady and capitalize on the strength of the market with new opportunities well into the future.”
Rising prices will create some pressure on sales momentum, so developers need to continue to market keeping their end goals in sight. Maximizing the best possible return on investment for home builders requires sophisticated multi-channel marketing plans to create higher perceived home values.
Cotton & Company has assisted developers, builders, private communities, marinas, and resort communities with marketing strategies for the past three decades. Whether it’s an upturn or a downturn in the market and based on each community’s independent needs, Cotton & Company’s team of real estate advertising specialists are here to help strategically market in the most cost-effective way.