Real estate marketing and photography trends to follow in 2021

By Hayley Robb, Building Kentucky

Images captured by John Bailey, Bowling Green real estate photographer and owner of Bailey Photography and Imaging. The property was owned by a local Bowling Green executive and includes a seven-car garage, five bedrooms, walk-out basement with a movie theater, home gym, steam room and more.

In 2019, only 11% of real estate agents used aerial photography, according to an NAR survey. Today, aerial photography might be the only thing an individual sees before calling a place “home.”

Aerial photography and virtual tours were two trends real estate experts urged industry professionals to adopt in 2020 but will be essential for success in 2021.

Bowling Green photographer John Bailey and owner of Bailey Photography and Imaging has been ahead of the curve for 8 years.

Bailey said the real estate photography market in Bowling Green has been strong during COVID-19. He said when the lockdowns first occurred, he was photographing more construction sites and vacant homes. Shortly after, requests for 3D and virtual tours increased mostly from the homeowners who wanted the extra security of not having heavy traffic in their homes.

Bailey said he also found more property owners looking for professional photography to appeal to the increased number of house hunters online.

“I think offering several services is key,” Bailey said. “It all boils down to the economy. If people have hard times, home sales will decline.”

Bailey urges marketers, real estate agents and industry creatives to look to other outlets. There will always be commercial customers who need help promoting websites and venues. Look to that, he said.

More than 20 economic and housing experts expect a Gross Domestic Product growth of 3.5% in 2021 and 3.0% in 2022, according to National Association of Realtors (NAR) press release.

As the industry continues to grow in the new year, it is going to be imperative for professionals to stay ahead.

5 real estate marketing trends for 2021

1. Aerial photography and use of drones

It’s important for property buyers to see both the inside and outside of homes they’re interested in. Unfortunately, COVID-19 has made in-person tours less of an option. Aerial photography and drone footage allows people to imagine their dream home – digitally.

2. Virtual tours

Many property buyers have become apprehensive and cautious to gather at indoor spaces or meet with strangers in-person. Virtual tours allow buyers to conveniently walk through a home without any hesitation or fear.

3. Leveraging automation

Whether its automated chat bots helping to secure leads or a third party operations helping speed up the transaction and ownership transfer processes, leveraging automation allows everything to happen simultaneously without any physical contact.

4. Digital real estate marketing

There are about 2.5 billion active monthly users on Facebook. And over 1 billion active monthly users on Instagram. It’s time to go where the buyers are and connect. Even if some were slow to accept the digital platform, 2020 has shown how resourceful technology can be.

5. Content marketing

Property buyers are looking for professionals they can trust. Content marketing is an inexpensive option that allows real estate agents, marketers and creatives to create compelling content for potential customers on platforms like Zoom, YouTube, websites and blogs.

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