If you’re reading this, you’re probably wondering if this article is going to be a doom and gloom piece about another housing crash, or a piece reminiscing on the pre-COVID times while mourning our blasted post-pandemic landscape.
You can feel assured that neither is, or will be, the case: this is an article that will be focusing on the state of the real estate market in the year of our lord 2021, and despite how unstable everything has seemed over the last year, the state of the market is good.
Taking advantage of the market, however, is going to require real estate agents to think on their feet, roll with the punches, and adopt savvy digital marketing techniques.
The market is strong, but the world real estate agents are operating in is no longer the pre-pandemic world; caution will be their best friend, as the Delta variant is still spreading, and entering digital spaces and establishing a solid online presence will be absolutely vital.
Let’s go through a few quick tips so that you can navigate the market of 2021 like nothing ever changed.
Changes: Not Just a David Bowie Song
Know Why and How the Market Has Changed
In 2020, according to Forbes.com, hordes of people left bigger cities and moved to either smaller towns or areas that were more remote. The main reason for this is that with the post-pandemic work-from-home jobs cape, and the closing down of many of the things that drew people to cities, people got stir-crazy in their tiny apartments and sought real estate that would better accommodate their needs.
With things reopening, however, these people who left the cities are starting to come back, turning their new, more rural homes for a profit. While this is a trend worth noting in the short term, it’s also important to acknowledge that future variants of COVID, and local and national responses to them, might change the landscape once more. It will be necessary for agents to listen to clients in their area and attempt to accommodate their needs.
Diversify Your Portfolio
If you’re a real estate agent in a niche market, you may want to consider expanding the range of properties you invest in, as well as your overall range. With the new normal being work from home and most business dealings being done remotely, it’s possible for real estate agents to expand outside of their typical borders and look at properties they wouldn’t have dealt with pre-pandemic.
This might be the best way to prepare for any more sudden shifts in business dealings brought on by COVID, as the more you diversify your portfolio, the more you’ll be ready to accommodate changing client needs.
Prepare to Go Digital
While the world is beginning to reopen and things are slowly returning to a semblance of normal, it’s important to remember that the Delta variant is still spreading like wildfire. The COVID pandemic is by no means over, and the ways in which it has changed the real estate business are still relevant.
Whether your business is slowly returning to normal or if you’re still taking extensive precautions, it’s important to remember that the world was going digital long before COVID started to spread. Real estate agents that adopt what can be seen as safety precautions now could be better prepared, post-COVID, to succeed in a world where the business will be dealt with in a digital space.
Professionals who take the necessary steps now to make their business dealings more remote will be better prepared to face the future than those who do not.
Need a good place to get started? Here are a few suggestions:
- Consider taking advantage of the live-streaming features on your social media. These features are criminally under-used by real estate professionals, especially during pandemic times. One way you might be able to use them is to host virtual open houses, where you take your viewers on tour through a property and answer questions they submit as comments. Don’t be afraid to get creative with this, though.
- Integrate AR and VR tech into your website. AR and VR have the unique ability to put your clients inside your properties from the comfort of their own homes. Especially in the event of another shutdown, having a VR tour of select properties available on your website would significantly drive up interest and sales.
- If your digital footprint isn’t huge, are you even really there? If you don’t have accounts on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram at a basic level, you’re doing something wrong. Social media allows your clients to connect with you on a personal level, something that clients have grown to expect from professionals in every kind of industry, and if you don’t have a constant and compelling social media presence, you aren’t taking advantage of one of the most current ways to grow your brand. Be personable, be creative, and make sure your audience knows that you’re not just ‘Joe Schmoe’ selling houses online: you’re unique, and your audience will want to buy from you.
- Consider employing the services of a consultant. Running a digital marketing campaign with coherent messaging across multiple platforms is complex, and that’s without considering ways to make your brand stand out. If you’re having difficulty getting your campaign off the ground, or feel as if your messaging isn’t accomplishing what you want it to, you might want to consider hiring a real estate marketing firm.
The Future is Digital
While experts may speculate about the future of the market, nothing is certain, especially as the pandemic continues to mutate and ravage cities across the globe. It then falls upon real estate agents to prepare for every eventuality, as their business may be affected by any sudden changes that may occur. The events of 2020 accelerated the progression of multiple industries (such as the moviemaking industry, or online schooling) towards more permanently digital spheres; If real estate agents do not catch up, they will be left in the dust by those people or agencies that do.