Homebuilder Marketing Product Engagement

“Engagement Marketing is premised upon: transparency, interactivity, immediacy, facilitation, engagement, co-creation, collaboration, experience and trust …” Allen Moore interviewed by Henry Jenkens, henryjenkens.org

New home shoppers often first ‘meet’ a builder through the company vision statements and the product presentation they find on the builder’s website. Like meeting anyone new, the initial moments have an impact on how comfortably a budding relationship will develop. With good information the website can be a satisfying place for new home shoppers to develop familiarity with the builder, and with it a sense of trust and respect.

It also offers the builder an opportunity to present an initial sense of engagement between the shopper and the new home models. After all, that is why the home buyer prospect (who is also a web user) got to this builder’s website to begin with. Even in the initial stages of considering a new home, shoppers want to know as much as they can about the products the builder has available: the models, the rooms, the features, the personalization opportunities, the details, and more.

Today’s builders offer plenty of opportunities for upgrade and personalization in their models. Little of this information is available ahead of time to anyone but a firm buyer. Yet any web user is a potential buyer, especially if they are given immediate access to interactive information that fulfills their ‘need to know’ before they have even formed the question. The website becomes the starting point for creating both a buyer-builder engagement and a buyer-product engagement.

 A Shopper’s Experience

Consider Carla’s experience as she begins to learn about the Ridge 5 model offered by the fictitious RDK Homes. She starts by clicking into the Entry after looking at the introductory information about the model on the landing page.

What she finds first of all is a full landing page just for the Entry.

“The entry is the welcoming point for family and friends. You can set the tone for your home through choices of flooring, lighting, and more,” the builder tells her in a written narration. “To the right, upon entering, is a recessed wall niche with a subtle lighting feature, ideal for fresh flowers.” It continues, “Your backyard garden can be glimpsed down the hall upon entering the foyer.”

She imagines walking in from work, her favorite vase greeting her with flowers cut from her own garden. From here she can click into Lighting or Flooring or even the Entry Closet, “. . . not just a convenient coat closet . . . It is designed with ample space to receive guests’ outerwear as they arrive, and still hold your own favorite run-out-the-door sweaters and jackets . . . .”

As Carla looks through the personalization choices for the Entry Closet she may see options for a designed closet organizer system, and a reconsideration as an open alcove with built in cabinets. The alcove option may even have a short story of arriving home and dropping packages onto a counter or into a built-in cabinet with slide-out shelves.

The opportunity to explore and interact with the model lets Carla investigate, make and save personalization choices along the way. An assortment of ‘products’ offered for even the entry closet area keeps the process captivating and Carla can form an image of her future home by personalizing these details. She is engaged with the builder’s informative, transparent ‘conversation’ with her, the model itself, and the personalization choices available to her. The model is already feeling familiar as a home, and she is ready to look at more.

Engagement works by giving people the props (information) to create the story of their new home. As Carla clicks through the Ridge 5, exploring it all room by room and feature by feature, she is invited to imagine this home coming alive. The click-through experience is enhanced when she selects and saves personalization options, a process that draws her even further into imagining living in the actual home.

Carla’s engagement with the builder’s models and products happen immediately, on the web, at her convenience. With access to rich information about the products, she can see her dreams of a new home come alive, with nothing more than her computer and favorite browser.

As she explores the model and makes real selections and decisions,  she is more inclined to visit the standing model. When she does, she will be at ease in familiar territory, have product knowledge, and be ready to continue the engagement with the builder’s representative in person.

Web Engagement Revealed

The web can be used more effectively to market production new homes by engaging users with new home products directly on the builder’s website. The engagement becomes most effective when users are presented with the familiar web engagement cycle and useful, detailed, captivating product information. Read more …

HomePersonalizer™

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Shoppers Avoid Models

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Engage home shoppers through exploration and personalization at the same time.

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