8 new real estate marketing trends for 2018

Written on January 22, 2018 by , updated on February 26, 2018

communicationIt’s a new year, which means it’s a great time to review the marketing strategies you use for your properties. Exploring the top real estate marketing trends for the coming year is the perfect way to get new ideas that will help you stay competitive in 2018.

Some of these marketing techniques, like using lots of photos and publicizing eco-friendly amenities, have been trending for some time. But it’s good to review the latest strategies to make sure you’re appealing to the renters you want. These eight trends are impacting the current real estate market and, therefore, your prospective tenants’ expectations.

1. Three-dimensional and virtual reality tours

Images have been part of real estate marketing for a long time. Customers have come to think of tons of pictures, of both inside and outside, as par for the course. That’s going to continue, augmented by newer technology. Video tours, images in 3D, and virtual reality are going to become increasingly popular, especially with younger generations.

Video tours and 3D images can appeal to prospective buyers more than static images can. It’s possible to get a sense of walking through and surveying the home. Photographs can make rooms look smaller or larger than they actually are. Video tours offer more realism.

With virtual reality tours, prospective customers get a real-world sense of what it’s like to walk through a property. Virtual reality tours have been shown to hike real-world visit requests as much as 30 percent. You can also get a sense of what aspects of the home people focus on, which allows you to emphasize those areas when you show the property.

Related: How to shoot real estate photos like a pro

2. Micro-targeting

The newest marketing methods can micro-target a specific renter base. If you’re marketing a property close to a college campus, for example, you might want to focus on college students. Do you want to focus on senior citizens because of proximity to walkable, flat parks? On people who will be moving in the summer, with the latest listings? You can choose these and other demographic targets, depending on the marketing niches for the property.

3. Online communications

Landlords who manage fewer than five properties may not have online communication systems for their properties, other than email. If that describes you, it’s smart to go digital with as much as you can. Use services like Cozy to post your listings and accept applications online. Consider texting your tenants along with emailing, as younger generations like millennials and Generation Z will be more inclined to text questions. Also, think about using a system that lets tenants request repairs online, like the free service through Cozy.

4. Eco-friendly amenities

You can improve your marketing efforts by drawing attention to the eco-friendly aspects of your property. Anything that saves energy or contributes toward a green lifestyle counts.

Smart thermostats are extremely popular. So are energy-efficient appliances, especially if they save money for utility-paying renters. They’re a draw for environmentally conscious renters, even if you pay the utilities. Spaces for bicycle racks and gardens appeal to millennial and Generation Z renters, who are attracted to green, eco-friendly modes of living.

Related: Top upgrades to green your rental

5. Helpful content

Since online information such as images and applications helps you stay on top of the market and attract good tenants, don’t forget the adage, “Content is king.” What does that mean for you, exactly? Well, it means that many renters expect helpful information and advice when they are looking at rentals online.

It’s become commonplace to see blogs giving advice on everything from how much total income one should spend on rent to whether to get renters’ insurance. Giving your potential renters helpful content will improve their experiences and make them more likely to rent from you. Send tenants links to helpful, renter-focused articles on Landlordology.com and Cozy.co.

6. Room for pets

Even though sixty-eight percent of all households in the U.S. own pets, you may not want pets on your property given the difficulties they present for maintaining and cleaning. But increasingly, you may be foregoing possible tenants if you ban pets. Pets are particularly popular with millennials. It’s worth rethinking your pet policy in the new year to attract the broadest cross-section of potential tenants.

Related: The definitive guide to renting to tenants with pets 

7. Tech-friendly amenities

If you have free Wi-Fi or cable, USB outlets, or other tech-friendly features, be sure to mention them in your promotional materials. If you don’t offer those amenities, make it as easy as possible for renters to get these services and advertise what’s available to them. More and more people have multiple devices and high expectations for how fast they work and how and convenient they will be to use.

8. Multiple marketing channels

It’s crucial to market across multiple channels. Your prospective tenants could find your properties on Facebook or through Doorsteps.com, if you use Cozy to create a free listing. Facebook can work very well in high-density areas but can be more expensive in lower-density areas. Keep track of what has worked for you in the past.

If you’ll be looking for prospective tenants in 2018, it’s a good idea to review the most recent real estate marketing trends, including the long-term ones. Incorporating these eight ideas will help you to optimize your marketing outreach.

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3 CommentsLeave a Comment

  • Jeff Wannberg

    Great blog post on trends for this year. Particularly the investors with 5 or fewer properties who need better online communications with tenants.

  • STEVEN D VISEK

    I love animals and am happy to rent to animal owners, but our association does not permit dogs.

    I do charge a 5% monthly pet premium, but no pet deposit(here in PA there is no legal differentiation between standard and a pet deposit, so you are limited to a total deposit equal to one month’s rent anyway).

    BTW I never use the word “pet” but rather “animal” in my leases.

    On ESAs, while required to make a “reasonable accommodation” reasonable doesn’t automatically mean “whatever animal the tenant wants to have.” Reasonable is a two way street. I specifically do not permit an animal that is dangerous or is intrusive to neighbors(noise-making).

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