Over the past decade, there has been a significant shift in the way we communicate, both in terms of the methods and platforms we use. This is especially true in the German property market, which has traditionally been known for its conservative approach. Property developers and consultants have been using traditional marketing methods, including communication policies, for much longer.
Social media has revolutionized the way businesses communicate with their customers and other businesses. It is faster, more targeted, and allows for more creativity and freedom. Unlike in the past, where companies would strive to get their press releases published in traditional media, today's goal is to get more clicks, downloads, and likes on social media platforms.
In today's world, convincing investors to invest in property requires more than just traditional investment figures. Storytelling has become increasingly important as it helps to differentiate the investment opportunities. Simply comparing yields and total returns is no longer enough for many investors. This blurs the clear structures and raises questions about the target customer. Decision-makers often ask who the target customer is when it comes to a new, modern concept.
It is inevitable that some information will be lost in the process, especially if the thinking is too narrow. It is important to address readers of specialized media differently than a potential applicant for a position via LinkedIn. At the core of the information is credibility and authenticity.
There is a tendency to overlook the fact that communication lies at the heart of the concept of social media - communication and the desire to connect with others. The emergence of social media has brought about significant changes in the way the property industry communicates. With faster communication, comes a sense of urgency and the need to share and report from previously private perspectives in real-time.
The fact that new companies emerge within a few years and gradually replace others can be seen in the example of Xing vs. LinkedIn. Twitter (now X) is losing followers even faster.
Our chart clearly shows that the vast majority of the 42 largest German-based property companies surveyed use a range of social media channels.
Here are our results:
• the professional platform LinkedIn takes the monopolistic 1st place,
• followed - at a considerable distance - by Xing and YouTube.
• X (Twitter) is close behind.
At least a quarter are active on Instagram or Facebook, although the momentum is strongly in favor of Instagram, while some of the Facebook channels of the real estate companies surveyed are rather dormant. It was also interesting to note that none of the companies were represented on TikTok or in the 'metaverse'.