Baby Boomers are the demographic most likely to sell houses. But how can you reach them? They’re not online, right? … Wrong! Let’s bust some of the myths. Don’t throw the “Baby Boomers out with the bathwater” when it comes to your real estate social media marketing.
Why should real estate agents target the Baby Boomers?
Baby Boomers (those born anywhere between the end of World War II and the mid-1960s) are the best source of leads and referrals for the vast majority of real estate agents. They’re the empty nesters, the downsizers, the grey nomads. In other words, they’re the generation most likely to be selling up the family home in pursuit of a different lifestyle.
In my strategy consultancy work for real estate principals and leading agents, I run workshops that focus on the ideal home-selling demographics in their neighbourhoods. In all but the inner-city suburbs, Baby Boomers generally come out as the demographic most likely to sell, every time.
Babyboomer meet Babyboomer!
A high proportion of real estate agents are Baby Boomers themselves. It’s an ideal career change at a later stage in life as it offers true autonomy and the flexibility to choose your own hours. But it’s more than that – people tend to identify with agents who they feel will “get” them. Having similar life skills and experiences, or at least being able to demonstrate that you understand your Boomer clients, can be a huge plus when it comes to gaining those all-important referrals.
So whether you’re a Millennial, Gen X-er or even a Boomer yourself, it’s time to find out more about what makes Baby Boomers tick and how you can interact with them on social media to boost your real estate business!
Baby Boomers are a booming industry
It’s easy to think of Baby Boomers as “old”, but times have changed. Being in your 50s, 60s or even 70s doesn’t entail the life of passive retirement and old age that it once did. Many people of this demographic are leading healthier and more productive lives than ever before. They’re taking the opportunity to do all the things they didn’t have time for while raising a family, managing a career or running a business.
In fact, if you’re a Netflix subscriber, I highly recommend watching comedy series Grace & Frankie staring Hollywood legends Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin. These ladies show us a whole new take on life, as they start over at age 70!
And this includes being active online – it’s a complete myth that Boomers are still stuck reading the paper rather than being part of the digital revolution! Of those aged 54 to 64, a whooping 87 percent are regular internet users, as are almost 70 percent of 65- to 72-year-olds. Boomers, just like everyone else, are looking to Google as their first source of information, and boosting their second careers by networking on LinkedIn. 3.1 million Baby Boomers are on Facebook. That’s a market worth tapping into!
Also, the 2016 Victoria census revealed that rental, hiring and real estate services is the fastest-growing industry. This is likely to be due in no small part to the fact that the Boomers are reaching an age when they’re thinking about a change of lifestyle and wanting to sell up. So it makes sense to target them with your real estate social media marketing – as long as you know how to speak to them in a way that resonates with them.
How to speak “Boomer”
Demonstrating that you understand the Baby Boomers can be integral to the success of your business. They’re the age group most likely to bring you word-of-mouth referrals. If they feel you don’t understand their needs, or think they belong at the seniors’ centre doing lightweight activities, they are highly unlikely to choose you as their agent or recommend you to any of their friends.
So, it’s essential not to stereotype them in your real estate marketing, or when you share content with them. Don’t ever refer to them as “old” or “seniors” – these are active, energised people who view themselves as being in the prime of life. They see retirement as an exciting new adventure in their lives, presenting opportunities that they couldn’t take advantage of before. Your marketing needs to keep this in mind. Don’t forget, they lived through the 60s so they literally invented everything!
The right social media content matters
If you want to aim your real estate social media marketing at Baby Boomers – and you really should – it’s important to know where to find them. They prefer more engaging, useful content rather than constant snippets of information. This is why Facebook is their favourite platform, followed by LinkedIn. Far fewer of them choose Twitter or Instagram.
Facebook has already seen the potential of marketing to the Baby Boomer generation – its new List Status feature could have been designed with the Boomers in mind. It enables them to share Buck list-style statuses with their friends, demonstrating to the world that they’re ticking off all the goals they set themselves when they retired.
This is something you can utilise in your own marketing by offering them hints and tips for a more exciting and fulfilling retirement.
Baby Boomers also love video! Research by Google reveals that 54 percent of this age group watch videos online – and, of course, this is a medium that lends itself perfectly to real estate marketing. Make it relevant and relatable, though; they won’t want to watch grey-haired old people with walking sticks hobbling through the neighbourhood online!
A new lease of life for your real estate business
Getting your content right can be the key to a whole new world of referrals and leads as the Baby Boomers are 19 percent more likely to share content with their friends on social media than other age groups.
They are also the most likely to follow links. Whatever content you post, it’s essential that you remember to include a link to your website so you can capitalise on their interest in your real estate business.
Many real estate agents have written the Baby Boomers off for too long. It’s time we embraced their love of life and can-do attitude. By applying it to your real estate marketing, you could find yourself enjoying a new lease of life, just like them.