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Real Estate Digital Marketing Agency | Cotton & Company
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Reduced Budgets and Increased Demand Present One of the Best Opportunities in Years for Real Estate Digital Advertising

Posted on May 22, 2020

Spring is usually prime home-selling season – but this spring is a whole different ball game. The impact of COVID-19 on our lives has been nothing short of extraordinary. Individuals, families, friends, and businesses are all facing the same anxieties and fears. Things are different for everyone – that is for sure – yet, different industries face different issues and situations right now. Businesses are at conflict with the hard question of whether or not to continue advertising during this crisis. Let us help you decipher what we have realized is working for the residential real estate industry.

According to a recent Kantar Study, 92% of people surveyed believe that businesses should continue to advertise during the COVID-19 outbreak. Some industries are experiencing a lot more demand, while others are looking at their demand dropping almost completely. Of course, conditions differ geographically and by customer base.

“This is a unique time for advertisers where we on one side may be moving toward a recession and on the other side have more people online willing to consume online services and products.”

Due to COVID-19, media consumption is increasing but digital ad spending is down as marketing managers halt budgets. Is there a great opportunity to use this time effectively and gain market share and top-of-mind brand recall? Due to an increase in online activity combined with reduced budgets, CPM rates have fallen dramatically. Online advertising prices are at the lowest they’ve been in years. But exactly how have CPM and CPC dropped?

“Digital marketing has been impacted by COVID-19, and marketers need to take action to adapt to the situation. There is a window of opportunity to gain market share through cost-efficient advertising.”

Media Consumption During COVID-19
Most customers are spending their time at home, which raises the question, “What are they spending their time on?”

Media consumption has spiked all across the globe, with 36% of users reporting that they watch more news, 27% watch more shows, 21% spend a longer time on social media, 18% engage in gaming, and so on.

Streaming is thriving, Conviva reports a 26% increase in streaming during the pandemic.

Streaming, gaming, and online food delivery are on the rise. Visual Capitalist shows how quarantining impacts consumer internet activities.

“Much like the stock market, the best buying opportunity is when everyone else is selling. In uncertain times, we at Cotton & Company turn to our data to help gain clarity. “

Since marketing luxury residential real estate is a long-term game, the opportunity to market to consumers trapped in their houses with stay-at-home orders should not be missed by developers. Our target audiences are among those that are consuming online media more than ever, and they are also faced with some life-altering questions: Do I feel safe where I live? Am I comfortable in my current home? Would I be better able to enjoy a future quarantine situation somewhere else? Is there a place where I can get a better value and quality of life than my current living situation? Those folks in the northeastern United States are in the center of this pandemic storm. Any that were on the fence or starting to consider retirement or a second home purchase in South Florida may be ready to jump off the fence as soon as the quarantine passes. That is why it is critical to make sure your product is in front of them now. And the most efficient and cost-effective method to reach them is through hyper-targeted digital media.

Trends in Social Media
The spike in consumption of social media across all platforms in tandem with a weaker ad demand from marketers has led to a significant decrease in competition in the auction. Brands who are continuing to run social ads are reaping the benefits of reaching their target
market more efficiently than ever before. And we are already seeing the same trend in our clients’ campaigns as well.

Developers looking to thrive with advertising in the current crisis should look to focus their efforts on popular media as that is where the customers spend their time.

Facebook’s worldwide average CPC rate dropped 19% from January to March. The same trend is being seen with Facebook’s global average CPM rates. Cost-per-thousand impressions fell to an all-time-low in early April and are now at around one dollar.

Similar effects of the Coronavirus have also been seen with Twitter. With an increase of 23% in daily usage as people flock to get the latest updates, while ad revenue dropped over 20%.

Across all digital channels, prices are falling – even though there is an increase in online activity. Facebook’s CPM rates fell between 15% to 20% in March as advertisers are stopping planned campaigns.

Data from Cotton & Company’s Digital Campaigns
To see how COVID-19 has impacted our clients’ digital media spends, we analyzed data from January through April 21, 2020.

Our total Reach increased by 42% since January, while our Cost per 1,000 has decreased 47%.
Our Impressions increased by 54% since January, while our CPM has decreased 44%.

Total Reach Reach Cost per 1000

Link Clicks have increased 115% since January while our CPLC has decreased 48%. Landing Page Views increased 9% since January, while CPLPV has decreased 40%.

Link Clicks

Even though the Coronavirus is impacting a majority of businesses negatively, there are opportunities to be seized. Prices for social media advertising and premium ad inventory have fallen to record lows. The cost of advertising is lower than just a couple of months ago.

“Marketers investing in the brand now can pick up market share at a fraction of the cost of just a few months ago.”

Cotton & Company is an industry leader in the marketing and sales of lifestyle-driven residential real estate. Our amazing team of digital marketing specialists, creative designers, copywriters, and website developers utilize today’s technology and new media channels to drive sales success for our clients throughout the world. For developers, club managers and real estate professionals facing real estate and marketing challenges, Cotton & Company’s experienced team is ready to develop a program that resonates with the evolving market and circumstances. The Cotton Solution provides a cost-effective methodology to create new interest in both new and existing residential communities. Additional case studies are showcased in Solutions magazine.

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