The AR Property Brochure: Integrating the Traditional With the Virtual

There’s no doubt that virtual reality is, and will continue to be, revolutionary in the property industry and beyond, but AR in property could be even more effective in a variety of ways. In this article, we’re going to take a look at the AR property brochure, and the array of benefits it can offer in property marketing.

The Benefits of Augmented Reality

Augmented reality is being widely hailed as the technology set to outstrip the success of its more well-known cousin, virtual reality. Not least, because AR has the ability to integrate seamlessly into the smartphone experience, without the need for any external hardware.

We know that the big players in Silicon Valley are hard at work devising lightweight augmented reality headsets that will appeal for mass consumption (learning from the early errors of Google Glass). There is, therefore, a lot of talk about the distinct possibility that augmented reality will form an integral part of our everyday lives in coming years, perhaps even replacing the smartphone.

Is The Consumer Ready?

In general, yes, consumers are eager to interact with brands using augmented reality technology. As a more accessible and easy medium than VR, augmented reality is appealing to a wider range of buyers. An AR property brochure, combined with smartphones and/or tablets is easy to use, even for those who may be unfamiliar with the technology.

The Limitations of 2D Property Marketing Material

We have written a few times about the fact that people find it hard to visualise how a property truly looks from drawings and photographs alone. This has been a barrier in property development for years, and also impedes the efficiency of property viewings.

A property may look great in the photographs, but when buyers view it in person, it’s fairly common for the real version not to live up to the perception elicited from the photos. This is disappointing for agents and buyers alike, and it wastes both parties’ time. The AR property brochure, however, can solve this problem.

How Does an AR Property Brochure Work?

Through a mobile app, augmented reality technology makes it possible for property marketers to provide prospective buyers with the opportunity to take a virtual tour of the whole property. The printed marketing materials usually offered by a property marketer can be transformed from their flat, printed medium to an interactive experience.

By simply scanning or taking photos of elements in the enabled print materials, a three-dimensional image will appear on the smartphone or tablet screen to be explored in interactive detail. All of this can be done in an instant, with virtually no setup or fiddling around.

Further Applications

Because the smartphone goes with us everywhere, the AR property brochure is not limited to viewing at home or from the chair in an agent’s office. Browsing an estate agent’s window display, a person can also hold up their phone to access property information and 3D visualisations direct from the high street. Newspapers and property magazines can also be enabled with AR functionality with no technological intervention on the printer’s behalf whatsoever.

A property brochure can be scanned and brought to life before the buyer’s eyes in an impressive way that positions the real estate agent’s brand as an innovative, forward-thinking company. Not only can interested parties view a 3D site model direct from their mobile device, but when buying off-plan the buyer can select different plots to view the layouts. This allows insight into the scale, design and feel of a property – but there’s also another, engaging feature.

The AR property brochure allows viewers to furnish and decorate virtual versions of the rooms in a property. They can select different fittings for kitchens and bathrooms, effectively designing the property for their individual tastes before they even see it in person.

Not only can an AR property brochure give buyers a glimpse into the future using 3D visualisation, it is also a powerful marketing tool. Used in conjunction with printed marketing materials, social media, mobile and online, and press/point of sale materials, the engaging nature of AR creates a positive experience of agent and property alike, optimising the road to sale.

Data

The AR property brochure gives buyers instant access to properties in which they are interested. This plays a very useful role in the work of the estate agent marketing the property.

With AR, the agent is able to capture data about engagement rates, allowing them to feed back to the seller about how many people have viewed the property, and potentially further data as to who is doing so. This data is also very useful to the agency itself, and – indeed – to the industry at large, enabling analysis of what kind of properties get the most traction, and from whom.

From Virtual Viewing To Reality

So the buyer has identified a shortlist of properties they wish to view in person. But before they make arrangements for a formal viewing, many actually take a drive through the neighbourhood to see if it is suitable for their lifestyle.

Augmented reality comes in once again. Holding up their smartphone, they can access details on their screen. For example, outside the local school, they can raise their phone and see information about OFSTED ratings, pupil numbers, class sizes, demographics, and availability of spaces. They can see how many restaurants and bars are nearby, view their ratings, photos of the interiors, even menus. The buyer is thus better informed, allowing them to narrow down their search even further.

Streamlining

By the time it comes to viewing properties outright, the buyer has identified precisely the right ones for them. There is a higher chance that they will actively put down an offer on the first or second property they view, rather than the fifteenth (as is the average at present).

With the AR property brochure, the entire property search and sale is streamlined significantly. A property can be efficiently moved from listing to sale with minimal wastage of time and resources. There is little doubt that augmented reality property viewings are the future for property marketing in both development and ready properties.

Combined with the possibilities offered by virtual reality in property marketing, we can expect the next evolutionary step to involve the widespread use these technologies across the industry.

If you would like to learn more about the sectors within the Property industry that will benefit most from these technologies, and the ways in which this will happen, then be sure to download our whitepaper ‘How Virtual and Augmented Reality Will Revolutionise House Building and Property Marketing’.

Download our Whitepaper Revolutionary Tech – How Virtual and Augmented Reality Will Revolutionise House Building and Property Marketing:

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