Vancouver

How Virtual Reality will Change Real Estate Marketing: Part 2

In the second of a two-part series, real estate marketing ninja Sepy Bazzazi explains the next level of virtual reality in presales, gamification and neighbourhood tours

By
RealtyNinja
April 6, 2016






Oculus Rift Virtual Reality
Developers in the US are beginning to use the Oculus Rift Virtual Reality system to show prospective buyers what new condos will look like — Arch Virtual

 

Last time, we took a look at how Virtual Reality is already changing the game of real estate marketing in terms of innovative and efficient home viewings. This week, we take the potential of VR to the next level

Presale Tours

Have you ever walked a client through the sample unit or showroom of an undeveloped building?

Many overseas buyers are online right now, checking out units in these undeveloped buildings, interested in purchasing ASAP. These people don’t have the means to come see the sample unit or showroom first hand, so they rely heavily on whatever they can find online to help them make their initial decision.

Luckily, the building they are interested in has a VR tour available for every different unit type. The overseas investor can throw on a VR headset and completely immerse themselves in the unit from thousands of miles away. They can walk around, look in any direction, examine unit features more closely and get a real idea of the space. Just by using VR, you’re already ahead of most the competition.

If you were wondering about local buyers, know this: the showroom of the future will simply be an office with numerous VR headsets on desks. Prospective local buyers will walk in, put on the VR headsets and have an agent guide them through the VR tour with live narrative. This gives you the ability, if you wish, to show the unit to thousands of people at the same time.

There are also other ways to enhance the VR showing experience, one of which we cover in the next section.

Listing VR Gamification

Virtual reality technology is going to make the biggest splash in the gaming industry. The same super nerds that were raised in part by video games are now the geniuses who are at the forefront of global technology. Guess what? They are actually building things they fantasized about as a kid.

The point is that virtual reality is not just a visual medium, it’s an interactive art form – it’s gaming, no matter how you chop it up. People who use your VR tours in the future are basically just playing a real estate video game (with real life outcomes, of course).

So why not make your real estate video game the best one out there?

What if, using your VR tours, your clients could change the paint on the walls with the touch of a button? Add a Persian rug or go full hardwood? Go full stainless steel in the kitchen and add a new 60-inch flat screen? Plan a full renovation, or just the removal of some walls? Once they are done “renovating,” potential clients can save their progress for later to share with family and friends. The result: they keep coming back to your website.

If you can be the first real estate agent who gamifies well in your market… the first who offers people a way to customize YOUR listings to THEIR liking?! Fuhgeddaboudit.

Immersive Neighbourhoods

Another opportunity worth exploring is the idea of free-roaming around a specific neighbourhood – from the comfort of your favourite chair (even that chair). We can already do this to some degree with Google Street View, but when virtual reality takes a firm hold on the world, this experience is going to be wildly different and highly dynamic.

Many agents currently showcase the neighbourhoods they serve on their website. Some use nice photos and others even produce beautiful videos. They do this to earn relevant traffic and to express their expertise and understanding of the niche.

Real estate ninjas of the future will complement their beautiful photos and videos on their site with immersive neighbourhood experiences. In less than 10 years, you will be browsing real estate websites and reading call to actions that say things like “Walk the Stanley Park Seawall in VR”, and “Drive across the Lions Gate Bridge in VR.”

Of course, when you start getting into VR neighbourhood tours, things can get pretty hectic pretty fast. Local businesses would get involved, and then so would advertisers. I wonder how the virtual neighbourhoods of the future will end up looking...

The truth is, there are a vast many possibilities when it comes to the virtual realm. I have covered a modest few of them here and hope that you will discover some unique ones of your own. With time and dedication, we’ll learn to harness the true power of Virtual Reality Marketing together.

Our goal at RealtyNinja is to make sure you’re always aware of the modern marketing opportunities available to you today, and in the future. And we’re not the only ones who believe virtual reality will play a role in the future of real estate. Inman said in January that VR is one of three trends agents should look out for.

I hope this two-part series has helped inspire the entrepreneur within each of you. If you have any questions, or would like to chat more, feel free to get in touch with me directly.

Until next time, ninjas [-_-]~~


Sepy Bazzazi is head of marketing at Vancouver-based real estate website SaaS company, RealtyNinja. Sepy is a homeowner who has worked in digital marketing for seven years and collaborated with hundreds of unique REALTORS® across Canada. He is passionate about content marketing and is the primary writer for RealtyNinja's blog, The Dojo.
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