This blog addresses another one of the 10 trends I’ve identified in the 5th edition of Up and Running in 30 Days.
This trend addresses segmentation: It’s no longer effective to market the same way to everyone. And, it’s no longer okay to try to appeal to all client segments. Even if you choose 3-5 segments, you must learn to speak to each in its own language.
Now: Four Distinct Segmentations of Buyers
As a new agent, I know you’re just concerned about finding someone who wants to purchase or sell a home! Yet, let’s think past just that. There are now four distinct segmentations of buyers (meaning those who want to buy our services of buying or selling a home). As you think about these distinct groups, ask yourself, “How do I have to adjust my selling style, my technology, my communication, and my expectations for each of these distinct groups? Which groups will I naturally relate to?”
- Traditionals—those older baby-boomers who are retiring
- Baby-boomers—getting ready for retirement, these folks make up the second largest buying population and have the greatest assets
- Gen-X—these folks have purchased first homes, but because of the housing bust, hadn’t been able to move up
- Millennials—(Gen Y) first-time home buyers, typically looking for affordable housing, such as condos, co-ops, and so on
In the National Association of Realtors’ 2015 report, Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends, Gen Y (millennials) comprises the largest share of home buyers, at 32%. This trend will continue, as their large numbers combined with improving personal financial conditions will enable these buyers to move the market. Gen X has the largest share of first-time sellers at 68%. Read this report to see buyer and selling habits of these various ‘target’ (segmented) markets, and choose your markets carefully.
- Positives: If you are able to adjust in the areas mentioned here, you can relate and sell to more people. To be successful, you must be flexible and sensitive to these differing needs and desires.
- Watch out for: Don’t try to lump all these needs into one. The average real estate agent is in his 50s; the average buyer is in his 30s. Also, minorities will account for many more clients in the future, yet minorities are a small part of the real estate community. In many areas, buyers are frequently more tech-savvy than agents (that’s generally true in the Seattle area, where I live, because of Microsoft® and related businesses). Also, agents tend to work the market as they’ve known it. They are relating to the past, rather than accessing trends and working the market they’re given. Be sure to stay updated on where the market is going (your manager is a great source of this information).
* Big Idea: One size fits all is no longer applicable to real estate sales. Agents must specialize in each of the niches they want to serve.