5 digital marketing trends property developers need to know for 2018

2018 is just around the corner and while you may have read many articles about 2018 digital marketing trends, such as ephemeral video, voice & blockchain, we take a look at the top trends that are really going to move the needle for property developers in the coming months.

Before we look forward, let’s take a look back, as past trends and learnings often fuel future thinking. 2017 was the year of video, programmatic & content marketing. Social continued to consume more of our media dollars and micro-influencers started taking over the social world.

With these trends came great challenges around viewability, ad fraud and brand safety, with big players pulling advertising spend from the likes of Google & Facebook to encourage them to better tackle these issues inside their “walled gardens”.

This duopoly are estimated to have received over 60% of all digital advertising spend in 2017, taking up to an unprecedented 85% of new digital spend.

While the property sector has been notoriously slow to jump on the digital bandwagon with advertising dollars generally going to traditional, offline channels, more developers are looking to Google, Facebook and other digital providers to make their marketing budgets work harder.

So here’s our 5 digital marketing trends, across the duopoly and otherwise, you need to know for 2018:


With over 600 million people worldwide using ad blockers, being relevant has never been more, well, relevant. Consumers have a limited attention span and expect a personal experience that’s super relevant to them otherwise they will not pay attention. Broadcast channels are making way for targeted digital advertising so ensure your marketing plan is utilising the wealth of targeting options available.

One key tactic you should be using to personalise your digital advertising is sequential messaging. Building the foundation with smart measurement and tagging will allow you to capture what users are interacting with and retarget them with the most relevant location, property or fittings they have been looking at. Too often we just see the same message going out to all users, irrespective of who they are or where they are at in the journey and that’s just not personal!


Part of personalisation comes with having a 1 x 1 conversation with your potential customer. Chatbots are now low cost & easy to set up and have gone from a gimmicky, nice-to-have technology to a serious digital marketing tool. Imagine having your best sales person available to your potential customers 24/7, responding instantly and creating a personal experience with your brand. All the while collecting information on your potential customer and what they are looking for. They can also save time and money, generate leads and create meaningful connections with your audience.

Immersive Experiences

Virtual & Augmented Reality are already powerful sales tools in the property market, and 2018 is the year they go mainstream. With Facebook buying Oculus and launching Facebook Spaces, Google continuing to bring affordable VR to your smartphone through Daydream and a whole host of affordable app developers out there, now is the time to incorporate this technology into your marketing campaigns to truly engage potential customers and immerse them in your offering. With user generated content and real life stories playing a big role in our content marketing strategies, leveraging the VR & AR experiences across video will help further engagement.

Live Video

We know video is king when it comes to engagement and Cisco have forecasted that 80% of internet traffic will be from video by 2020.

Live video is emerging as a must-have for digital marketers and there are many opportunities to use this across the property market. Domain recently ran a live auction video across Facebook achieving extremely strong engagement results and we’ve got some tips for success with this format:

Before – ensure you are promoting the upcoming live video to your audience, with clear timings & information on what they can expect.

During – encourage your live audience to interact to increase your reach during and after the live event.

After – following the event you can amplify your Live videos just like any other post on Facebook, to give it life beyond the live.

Facebook Watch

Another new possibility for video advertising comes with the launch of Facebook Watch. Recently launched in the US, this is Facebook’s play to take on TV, Netflix and YouTube. Currently there is original content as well as user-generated content on offer, but Facebook famously bid USD$600mil for the IPL rights earlier in the year which makes a statement about where they could take it. They are starting to run pre-roll ads against this content so with video playing such an important role in 2018 this could be a real opportunity for developers to run against relevant content to a very targeted audience. There’s no date for an Australia launch but we’ll certainly be watching this one closely.

So there you have it, our top 5 digital marketing trends for property developers in 2018. Some existing tech going mainstream and some new initiatives to watch out for. Which ones will you be including in your 2018 strategy?


Jamie Taylor
Digital Lead, True Sydney