With over 460 million Internet users, India is the second largest online market, ranked only behind China. By 2021, there will be about 635.8 million Internet users in India. There are two main catalysts for this development: the availability of low-cost smartphones and most significant of all, the availability of dirt cheap Internet data. This sudden easy access to the Internet led to India having the highest amount of data consumption in the world. Due to this phenomenal growth of the Internet, reach of social media has also increased significantly in recent years. According to Statista.com, it is estimated that by 2019 there will be around 258.27 million social network users in India, up from close to 168 million in 2016. This is why it’s more important than ever to focus on social media marketing strategy for the real estate business.
The most popular social networks in India are Facebook and YouTube, followed by social app WhatsApp. As of today the most potent social media platform is Facebook. As of October 2018, India claimed the first place with 294 million Facebook users, ahead of second-ranked United States with 204 million Facebook users. Facebook is projected to reach close to 319 million users in India by 2021.
Today, social media is infused into every stage of digital marketing – from lead generation to digital strategy, from content marketing to customer management. It is also important to understand that the utility of each of these social mediums are different; it is important to use the right medium for the right messaging. While Facebook is utmost important for brand and customer acquisition, Twitter can act as an influencer of thought leadership. Instagram, on the other hand, is helpful with creating a visual experience. LinkedIn can play a key role in employer branding and B2B business. Coupled with other traditional marketing tools, the social media platforms are working wonderfully well for the real estate sector.
Rural penetration of Internet has led to increase in the numbers of users who are using regional languages. According to Google, the number of non-English language Internet users (currently are 234 million) has already overtaken the English users (175 million).The number of language users is expected to grow at CAGR 18% over the next four years to reach 536 million while the number of English users will grow by only 3% to reach 199 million. As a marketer we must be aware to use regional content on social media if our target audience is more comfortable in one particular language. At CHD Developers, we realized this and promoted our ongoing project “Green Park Residences” at CHD city, Karnal, on social media. We developed the content in Hindi language and generated very good number of leads through a campaign on Facebook.
According to a survey by Statcounter, Indians use their phones to access the Internet more than 80 per cent of the time. Apparently, we should produce specifically-designed content for mobile phones in order to engage with the next billion Internet consumers.
Social media marketing has already established itself as a preferred mode of marketing in the real estate sector. The pie of social media is consistently increasing in the overall marketing budget and it is poised to grow further as the reach of social media is continuously increasing and the cost per lead is also low in comparison to traditional media.