You may think of Millennials as kids, but many of them are now ready to buy their first house. They have popped up on many real estate trends forecast reports over the past few years. This is an important, diverse demographic with different characteristics than the older consumers you’re accustomed to.
One of the big differences between Millennials and previous generations is that they grew up with the internet and smart phones. They're able to adapt quickly to new tools and advancements. Millennials have mastered social media and the various apps and devices at a young age.
Smart marketing to this group is about knowing how and where to reach them and which content they'd find most appealing.
Give Them Move-In Ready
Millennials aren’t looking for fixer uppers. They may have the money for the down payment and closing costs, but little else. The house should be move-in ready. These buyers don’t have the time or the money to do fixes and upgrades. Many prefer new houses to older houses that need more maintenance. If necessary, advise sellers to upgrade the kitchen and bathrooms and emphasize this in marketing materials.
Awesome Online Listings
Millennials will do almost all their research online. The listing pages in Zillow or other real estate web sites needs to be excellent with all the information buyers need. Include lots of beautiful visuals and don’t overlook the listing copy. Spend a little extra time writing evocative, engaging descriptions of the property features.
Emphasize the Visuals
Spend extra money on a top-notch photographer to shoot eye-catching photos that are well lit and colorful with angles that make rooms seem huge. Carefully select pictures of only the best parts of the property.
Consider doing 3-D tours instead of a standard video tour. It gives buyers the control to explore the house and the grounds and focus on what’s important to them.
Millennials are invested in personal expression and lifestyle trends, so it pays to focus on selling the style and fashionable features. Give them a house that’s Instagram ready.
Neighborhood is More Important
Millennials want to be close to cool commercial centers, things to do, and desirable employers. They prefer to live in suburban areas but still want a place with better access to public transportation, trendy neighborhoods, attractive amenities, and nightspots.
If you have newer properties in suburban (suburb + urban) areas, consider targeting Millennials.
In the same vein, if you have a house with lots of high-tech and green features, Millennials may be your target buyers. To them, wi-fi is as essential as water and electricity; it must be strong, fast, and always available.
Millennials also tend to be more cognizant of the importance of energy conservation and sustainability. Advise making green upgrades if it’s in the budget.
Millennials don’t see Twitter and Facebook as just a way to share personal details with friends and family. They’re used to the marketing aspect of social media as well. To reach this group, you can’t just post the listing on the MLS and hope for the best.
Meet them where they are online: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, and other platforms. This will require editing and repackaging your marketing content into smaller, more visual and interactive bites.
Millennials quickly tire of the same old thing. Look for ways to make your listing stand out from the crowd. You need to think outside the box to attract their attention, which is bombarded daily with tons of content and advertising. A video tour of the neighborhood and “event” open houses that include snacks and live music could inspire younger buyers to come take a look.
Careful with the Salesman Shtick
Millennials are often more suspicious of some traditional advertising approaches and skeptical of old school puffery. Don’t exaggerate or try to fool them. With a two-second search on their smart phone they can discover the truth.
They are now over 60% of all first-time home buyers, and their buying power is rapidly growing. It’s time for real estate agents to take them seriously and start catering to their habits and tastes.