Top CRE Marketing Trends to Watch in 2022

Commercial real estate (CRE) marketing has been making substantial headway in recent years. But, the past two years have significantly accelerated existing trends by combining innovative technologies with forward-looking strategies. And, by seamlessly merging scalable data with automation and analytics, CRE marketing initiatives are being elevated to a new level.  

So, we took a closer look at the ways digital innovation is transforming the CRE marketing landscape and highlighted the main trends anticipated to shape the sector in 2022 and beyond.  

Enhancing the Digital Experience  

Since digital advertising is now an integral part of CRE marketing, the past two years have further accelerated innovation in the digital marketing landscape. Highlighting the importance — as well as the convenience — of a properly curated digital experience, data-driven resources have been gaining momentum for quite some time — and are only expected to gain even greater traction going forward. 

As a clear example, while static materials — such as printed brochures or flyers — are still part of the marketing process, virtual marketing materials provide an immersive experience and keep the audience engaged with data that can be updated and kept fresh effortlessly. Moreover, this resource engagement leaves a trail that can be turned into trackable and analyzable data, which helps assess the reach and value of marketing collateral. 

Bolstering Your Marketing Tech Stack  

The use of a wide array of tech-intensive marketing tools is a good strategy but consolidating these resources into a fully integrated solution stack unlocks even greater value. Specifically, powerful automation platforms streamline workflows to seamlessly tie operations and collaboration together. 

To that end, by leveraging the power of connected solutions, companies can synchronize their portfolios based on availability and syndicate listings with one click across multiple internet listing services, all while simultaneously gaining full portfolio and deal oversight, as well as comprehensive market insights. Consequently, ensuring that this end-to-end process is easily accessible through mobile devices and that it’s also underpinned by cloud storage technologies is essential to stay competitive. 

Virtual Communication Becomes the Norm 

In the spring of 2020, the online environment became the main conduit of communication, but this shift is anything but temporary. While online meetings, conferences and events became the standard early on in the pandemic, virtual interactions in CRE marketing are here to stay.  

Now, connecting instantly with clients, partners and colleagues is instrumental in advancing deal flow.  And, despite the factors that accelerated this trend, the value of building relationships efficiently and immediately through various virtual mediums is undeniable.  

For example, self-guided virtual tours that enable prospective clients to conveniently explore a space on their own terms (and without leaving their current location), aren’t going anywhere. Furthermore, the expanding e-signature market — which also gained significant ground due to pandemic-generated limitations— is also disrupting industries that largely relied upon in-person interactions: The flexibility, simplicity, timeliness and security provided by the digital signature market ensures that real estate agreements can be signed immediately and can move up the approval chain quicker than ever. 

Developing Interactive Marketing Content  

Optimizing the user experience has always been a top priority in CRE listing marketing, but the pandemic has fast-tracked the process. For example, tech-inspired elements — such as interactive property websites, maps and floorplans — that engage users on their own time and in their own way — are true game-changers. Likewise, so are websites that incorporate AI (Artificial Intelligence) to handle automated conversations, an approach that exceeds common chatbots. 

While digital tools such as virtual tours are major drivers of growth, other emerging sectors well worth keeping an eye on are virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR). VR and AR take the experience of viewing a space to a whole new level. And, considering that Apple is rumored to be working on an AR/VR project that could launch as soon as this year, the trend is expected to only grow in popularity. 

Spotlight on Creative Marketing Strategies 

Dynamic market conditions induced by the pandemic require creative marketing strategies, and the past two years have expedited existing trends that have become the norm in the meantime. What’s more, the rise of remote work has also led to a greater emphasis on flexibility in terms of spaces and lease periods.  

Adapting to these shifting market trends means devising strategies that accommodate user preferences. For instance, as people moved from dense urban centers to suburban areas in droves, the office landscape changed dramatically. But strategies can be adjusted to advertise flexible leases in central business districts and focus on companies looking to lease spaces in suburban settings, among other resourceful approaches.  

Incorporating Sustainability Into Your Marketing Strategy  

It comes as no surprise that sustainability is a deciding factor in consumer decision-making. Consequently, highlighting sustainability efforts in CRE marketing should also play a key role in generating leads. Moreover, a consistent marketing approach that underscores the importance of creating environmentally-friendly, economically relevant and inclusive spaces can draw in end-users who value the same principles, resulting in better quality leads. 

Additionally, sustainable CRE marketing should also emphasize efforts to make measurable commitments toward sustainability. Strategies should especially reflect accountability, transparency and social responsibility in an era when environmental and social awareness is increasingly taking over the public discussion. 

Timea-Erika Papp

Timea is a senior writer covering real estate trends and industry news in the U.S. Timea was previously a senior associate editor at Multi-Housing News and Commercial Property Executive and has an academic background in law. She has been working in the real estate industry since 2011. Reach her at [email protected].

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