Using Researching to Better Understand Apartment Buyers

With new apartment developments appearing across Perth, prospective buyers are being offered more choice than we have previously seen and buying off the plan is becoming more commonplace. In this increasingly competitive market, developers are having to become more sophisticated in how they appeal to and reach apartment buyers.

Clarity assists a number of property developers with the marketing and communication of their new developments. When we ask “Who are you targeting? Who is likely to buy your apartments?”, we are often told it is investors, SINKS and DINKS and downsizers. But who are these people, how do we reach them and what messages will resonate?

Underlying Clarity’s premise that marketing and communications should be strongly informed by evidence, we decided to undertake our own research so we could guide property clients as to how to target prospects for new apartments more effectively. This involved using an online omnibus survey with a large sample size of over 900 West Australians, meaning we could be confident of the results as well as identify a significant sample of people interested in buying apartments, affording us the opportunity to further analyse who these people are. We included three questions on the survey to identify those likely to consider buying an apartment, the locations in which they would consider buying and their preferred apartment size.

We have used these results to define target audiences for social media marketing, ensuring we maximise return on marketing investment. It also allows us to create tailored messages for certain segments of the market, resulting in posts that are more relevant to the target audience.

Clarity also works with a number of property developers to build their profile and brand. Workshops recently undertaken for a client regarding the apartment buying process, revealed that many apartment buyers look into the reputation of the developer when buying off the plan. They want reassurance they are buying from a reliable operator with a history of building quality product, being financially sound and doing the right thing by buyers. We therefore included a fourth question on the survey to determine awareness of different property developers amongst prospective buyers to see what profile they had in the market. This will allow us to track the effectiveness of the work we do over time to raise their reputations and build brand equity.

There are many ways in which research can be employed in the property development process. Clarity has previously used research to assist with initial concept design, testing community sentiment regarding upcoming development, pricing research, refining of final design and targeting and messaging at the marketing stage. Research is often regarded as requiring significant investment, however there are many different research techniques which can be used to better guide development design and marketing. Any additional understanding of your target market can only be beneficial in assisting the design, marketing and sales process.

Author


Anne Gribble
Senior Advisor

Anne Gribble - Senior Advisor at Clarity Communications

Anne has extensive consulting experience in the areas of branding, research and strategy, gained through a number of roles in Perth and London. She has a strong understanding of the business planning function of organisations. Her strength is her ability to tie the required strategy resulting from project outcomes to overall business planning, understanding the “bigger picture” and how evidence-based decisions help to achieve this.