Lifestyle Marketing in Indian Real Estate
A review of the real estate market in India shows that the current buyer isn’t as much price sensitive as it were the case a couple of decades ago. The current downturn notwithstanding, Indians have grown both economically and in terms of aspirations. The concept of a ‘good life,’ is now well entrenched in not just the rich but also with the burgeoning middle class. To categorize and thereby cater to the Indians as a simple cattle class market could be a grave mistake for any real estate marketer.
Growing income levels, exposure to the western and developed world and availability of easy finance options have changed the Indian buyers’ mindset to a great degree. Gone are the days when a simple review of the perimeter of the property and cost would either make or break a deal. Today’s Indian is willing to pay the extra buck provided he is able to find the perfect match for his lifestyle aspirations.
As a real estate marketer today, the sale is not concluded in the selling the four walls that make up the perimeter, it includes selling what lies within and in the immediate outside. The amenities; the ease and comfort of doing things; what lies within the community; and what lies in the immediate neighborhood – all are key ingredients of determining the lifestyle and thereby the sale or decline of a property.
Let’s take an example of a swimming pool! In most circumstances this definitely does not come under the bracket of a necessity however having the option of going over for a swim in the evening or over the weekend presents a choice that is good to have! It is a yardstick to measure how much you have moved on the lifestyle ladder.
Often in the selling space, the consumer is focused on the benefit derived out of the features of a product or service. The mere existence of a feature does not necessarily sway the consumer mindset to go for the purchase. The real estate space meanwhile seems to be bucking this age-old trend. Home-buyers today would like to know and see a lot of features which may or may not be of direct benefit to their day to day lives. However, they represent a certain brand and level of lifestyle.
As consumers become more lifestyle centric, developers and marketers have adapted themselves to offer more and more to today’s consumers. Lifestyle marketing is the latest buzzwords in the corridors of real estate marketing with consumers lapping it up like no tomorrow. The yardsticks of home buying have changed a great deal to shift towards lifestyle as opposed to convenience and budget.
The changes are expected to move further into the lifestyle domain in the future with a greater influx of features and comforts. The ability of a developer to deliver on novel features and the ability to sell an existing feature in a novel manner could be the clinching factors in the days ahead.