VR & AR in Marketing Property Developments
VR & AR in Marketing Property Developments
Virtual reality is revolutionising the strategies we use for marketing property developments. With the use of virtual walkthroughs, both developers and agents are able to begin marketing before a single brick has been laid.
We have addressed in depth, in previous articles, how VR alleviates major snagging points that previously hindered the journey from planning to sale of a development property. However, as a quick summary, the major benefit of implementing virtual walkthroughs from the earliest stages of a property’s development is that it allows potential buyers to fully immerse themselves in the property in a way that cannot be achieved with two-dimensional blueprints, or even brochures.
As our co-Founder, Fergus Byrne, explains:
“Virtual Reality has been a complete game changer for the traditional show home. Instead of relying on floor plans and models to give purchasers a concept of their future home, developers are now able to take their customers “into” their property using Virtual Reality. Buyers can explore space in an utterly immersive way that is both instructional and sensory. The show home is unlikely to disappear but Virtual Reality can complement traditional off-plan sales material and allows developers to take their show home on the road, internationally and set up a Virtual Reality experience in minutes.”
Marketing Property Developments from the Showhome
This technology, however, will not eliminate the need for a showhome. It is about integrating virtual reality technology, and – perhaps more so – augmented reality into the showhome. Whilst virtual reality may have the edge in the space of virtual walkthroughs for overseas buyers and so on, augmented reality is the technology that stands to deliver the most benefit from the showhome itself.
Augmented reality offers prospective buyers the opportunity to customise a showhome to their tastes in a way that is both user-friendly and engaging. It may also be more appealing to many viewers who are less comfortable with the process of strapping on a headset and disappearing into a virtual space. The way that augmented reality interacts with the real world offers and enjoyable experience, in which users are able to customise their showhome surroundings to their own personal tastes.
Engaging and Immersive: Marketing Property Developments with Affiliate Brands
Homeware, DIY and furniture retailers have already begun integrating their products into an augmented reality format. This allows shoppers to hold their smartphone up to a space in their home and overlay a digital rendering of a piece of furniture onto their physical environment. In this way, the user is able to see how a piece of furniture will look in their home. Brands such as Wayfair and Ikea have already begun using this technology, and it is anticipated that others may follow suit.
Apply this concept to the showhome, and you begin to see multiple benefits. As a starter, there is the potential for an added revenue stream, as affiliate relationships can be built between property marketers and developers, and the retailers seeking to showcase their products in the showhome. And on the buyer side, it offers an added dimension to the ways in which they are able to visualise themselves living in the property.
A prospective buyer can explore the showhome physically, holding up their smartphone and augmenting the colour of the walls, the style of curtains, and placing virtual renderings of pieces of furniture within the space. In this way, they are able to begin customising the property to their tastes, before they’ve even put down an offer.
In short, augmented reality is a property marketer’s dream. Equally, developers will be thrilled by the improvements the technology can make to the speed of sale. Never before has a buyer had quite so much scope to visualise themselves within a particular property.
Back in the agent’s office, virtual reality offers a similar level of engagement. The same technology that drives an augmented reality interaction from the showhome itself can equally be implemented within the virtual reality space.
Rather than being in the physical space, virtual reality property walkthroughs can be integrated with the same customisable options for prospective buyers to play with as they view in full, immersive VR. Even where this customisation aspect is not implemented, the chance to be fully immersed in a property before it is even built will soon become an indispensable tool for driving the purchase process.
The Property industry is still in the early stages of adoption of VR and AR technology. However, week by week, more and more property marketers and developers are beginning to implement these technologies into their strategy. The adoption rate is picking up pace, and fast.
For marketers and developers, the time is now. Getting ahead of the competition, and positioning themselves within the future framework of property marketing will award early adopters the edge within their industry. Engaging with up-and-coming technologies is the key to optimising brand perception.
That said, it is still prudent to note that it’s important to tread carefully. A wrong move at such an early stage could cause more problems than it promises to solve. Our advice is to be thorough, and to understand that, whilst it is important to begin initiating these changes soon, it is even more important to do so with care. Being informed, working with professionals, and executing the move to virtual and augmented reality in marketing property developments in a thorough and intelligent way is the route to maximising the potential profitability of this new technology.
Being informed, working with professionals, and executing the move to virtual and augmented reality in marketing property developments in a thorough and intelligent way is the route to maximising the potential profitability of this new technology.
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’.