2022 is PropTech’s year. So many other industries have seen massive disruption with the introduction of tech, drawing huge investment and becoming mainstream, and replacing legacy players. PropTech has been growing steadily around the world as more capital has flowed into start-ups in the space, solving global problems.
Consumers will find their ideal properties on social media
Because of the way PropTech is going mainstream, it will become a more obvious tool for consumers looking to buy, sell or rent properties. Discovering properties that match your exact needs via social media – not traditional online property platforms – is going to become commonplace. This is remarkable, considering that this time last year, this entire industry didn’t exist – and it’s only going to grow.
The point of proper targeting with PropTech is that if you find yourself searching for a property, you won’t suddenly be spammed with irrelevant ads for properties that don’t match your needs – targeting will deliver the right properties for you, in the area in which you are searching and connect you with the right agent, right in your news feed.
Agents will have digital profiles
Agents have traditionally advertised their area expertise with billboards and other outdoor ads. A customer’s decision on who to buy from or sell with – essentially, who to trust – was driven by the trust that those created. That trust is now going to be won online, where people are spending more of their time and becoming more and more open to performing transactions with trusted partners.
For agents, the move to social media marketing allows for better targeting of customers, advertising their hard-won area expertise to the right people, in the right place, at the right time and allowing them to build trusted online brands. Agents who embrace the social media space will open themselves and their inventories up to customers and give them much simpler and more effective channels of engagement. Why is this better than a billboard? A billboard is inflexible, doesn’t offer the opportunity to click through to find out more about the agent, their history, or their listings. Social media marketing offers agents all that and more.
New real estate models will mature
With PropTech comes options – but not all of it is as effective as the next. As we saw with the collapse of Zillow’s iBuyer model, not all PropTech is created equal.
The rise of different ways to find, initiate and conclude deals means more options for consumers, but we believe that the trusted intermediary who can guide people through what is likely the most expensive transaction of their lives – the agent – will remain central to the success of property transactions.
Even with the rise of the Power Buyer model – where financial institutions back consumers by buying their current property and renting it out while they wait for their next property transaction to be concluded to help with liquidity – requires an agent to be part of the deal. Those agents just need to be digitally-savvy and connected to the 21st century via social media.
Chatbots and Artificial Intelligence (AI) will become agent essentials
The shift to the digital world for agents means that the initial point of contact is now also digital, which requires a new way of managing the different volume of digital leads at various stages. This means that the leads also need different types of nurturing by agents – something you’ll be needing additional help with.
Chatbots will help agents start to manage these queries better this year, as their implementation becomes simpler and more cost-effective. A chatbot can start the initial conversation with a lead and gather the basic qualifying information, packaging it for you and making it simpler to manage.
Behind that chatbot is the Artificial Intelligence algorithm which can be taught certain rules around what and how to answer queries, helping the lead understand the requirements and streamlining things for the agent. It sounds complicated to implement and manage, but it really isn’t – and any time spent setting up the bot will be repaid exponentially in terms of time saved in quickly and efficiently qualifying and managing leads as they come in.