Residential property developers must get to know Generation Connected

Peter ChittendenSeptember 18, 20120 min read

I am sure you have heard of the baby boomer generation along with Gen X and Gen Y, now it’s time to get to know Generation C (Connected) and Generation S (Screen).

Why? Over coming years both of these groups will start to change how we market and communicate with these future buyers, and the trends are already showing up.

Generation C: Connected, communicating, content-centric, computerised, community-oriented, always clicking, they are primarily urban and suburban. By 2020, they will make up 40% of the population in the U.S., Europe, and the BRIC countries, and 10% of the rest of the world — and by then, they will constitute the largest single cohort of consumers worldwide.

Generation S is already here. They came on the scene during one of the most significant technological revolutions in the digital age the arrival of the portable screen. Goldman Sachs estimates almost 2 billion smartphones will be sold this year around the globe.

Now there is compelling evidence that successful brands will go where the action is – touch-screens, and this will include project marketing.

The Property connection

Local research indicates that almost 30% of real estate websites are now being accessed via mobile devices, including tablets, and that number is expected to increase to beyond 50% in the next two years. Beyond that, who knows?

We are now looking at a world where screens are used for everything from entertainment, communication, education, shopping and transacting. It makes the world much smaller and more accessible and at virtually any time, on demand.

How will marketers, brands, retailers and publishers stay relevant to this audience that expects to transact nearly everything on a touch-screen? First, they need to be where the consumer is and ensure a relevant brand experience irrespective of how the content and information were discovered.

That means creating and redesigning websites to render appropriately and dynamically for different screens and operating systems. How will brands facilitate seamless transaction and communication with these new consumers, who will only have the expectation of such an experience?

Brands are behind – but that creates an opportunity:

Today, 45% of Fortune 500 companies do not have mobile-optimised websites, according to a recent study from the Interactive Advertising Bureau. But now is not the time to sit back.

It’s still early innings for this screen-driven world, and there are many other avenues to still develop and explore. Now is the time to get involved with partners and help shape the Gen S and Gen C media platforms and experiences. For some years I have been involved with Tabletop Technology – the Hii interactive platform has been used on several Colliers International projects and very well received. Further to this our sales executives also use iPads to manage and service their potential purchasers.

Such new technology always requires investment and patience, but action now will best position us all to be prepared for what comes next and likely will arrive even faster than before, and this is where technology like Hii have already started us down that road.

Peter Chittenden is managing director for residential of Colliers International.

Peter Chittenden

Peter Chittenden is managing director for residential of Colliers International.
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