Millennials are defined as the generation in their young adulthood between the ages of 25 and 34. They are in their prime years of independence. One of their priorities during this life stage is to look for a place to call their own. 

However, due to the challenging economic climate, Millennials have been dubbed ‘guppies’, short for ‘giving up on properties’. Many are inclined to rent or stay in their parents’ homes. Despite this, 69% of millennials remain hopeful and aspire to own homes within the next 5-10 years. With this in mind, it’s more important than ever to ensure that your marketing efforts are tailored to the motivations and behaviours of Millennial audiences. 

Understanding these motivations and behaviours gives you the power to create messages and creatives that directly resonate with your target audience; increasing memorability, trust and recall. Buying a property is a big investment and involves a sometimes lengthy time commitment from buyers for researching, scouting areas and viewing properties. Throughout this customer journey, there are various touch points where your marketing efforts can engage the buyer and convince them to buy with you. 

As a human-first agency, we used GWI data to provide a quick snapshot of the behaviours and motivations of Millennial property buyers so that we can provide you with recommendations on how best to market to them. 

Parents of young children

Family composition is a big factor in making decisions about major purchases such as property as it dictates the amount of space and amenities sought by potential buyers. Over two-thirds of millennial property buyers are parents of one or two children. Out of those with children, their children tend to be younger than twelve years old. 

This presents an opportunity to consider targeting not only millennials but also the younger members of their households. Real estate brands can highlight easy access to amenities for their children, such as schools and family-friendly parks. You need to consider these USPs when writing ad copy, or an organic social post as a property in a good school location might be the one thing that the buyer is looking for. If you fail to include this information in your marketing, you could miss out on an opportunity to convert potential interest into a successful conversion. Behavioural science principles such as social identity wherein their roles as parents are highlighted could be used to make ad copy that resonates with the values of their current life stage (e.g. ‘A paradise for you and your family’). Social proof can also be used to highlight children’s feedback (e.g. ‘Children love living here.’)


Affluent and premium lifestyle enjoyers

Many property buyers identify as being affluent. They value premium variants of products and membership in exclusive communities. Many also identify as adventurous, with a keen interest in extreme sports, and health-conscious, particularly in the context of nutrition and food choices

They also tend to use social media to avoid missing out on things and to talk about trends. Many cite Facebook and Instagram as their favourite social media platform. 

By understanding more about your audience, real estate agents can start to pinpoint more accurately what they should be talking to their customers about, in this example, Millenial Property Buyers cite Facebook and Instagram as their favourite social media platforms, you can utilise this information and change tactics in your marketing strategy to ensure that you are targeting this audience where they are most. 

Real estate brands can harness the exclusivity bias by building a community among their buyers and offering exclusive premium benefits relevant to their interests (e.g. ski holidays). At the same time, real estate brands can harness FOMO by highlighting accessibility to trending activities and events around the properties through newsletters, as well as prioritising content on platforms millennials frequent, particularly Facebook and Instagram.


Ambitious and business-minded

Many millennial property buyers have climbed the ladder in their respective careers and are currently in supervisor and management roles. Many consider themselves ambitious and are interested in entrepreneurship, business and investments. They also frequently use social media applications for work-related networking and research.

Real estate brands can consider using work-related themes in their messaging, such as emphasising a good work-life balance and belonging to a community of similar-minded working professionals. Behavioural science principles such as imaginary benefit can be used to conjure images of achieving work-life balance by living in properties near their workplace (e.g. ‘If you lived here, you would be home by now’). Likewise, real estate brands can use framing and emphasise buying property not only as a living space but as a future investment. 


Key Takeaways

  • Many millennials in the UK aspire to buy a home in the near future despite the economic climate. 
  • Millennial property buyers tend to have young children who influence their property decisions. Consider highlighting family-friendly amenities (e.g. schools and parks) to attract this segment.
  • Millennial property buyers cite Facebook and Instagram as their favourite social media platforms. Combined with their interest in affluent lifestyles and activities such as health/nutrition and extreme sports, targeting them via these platforms with relevant content (e.g. ski holidays as a benefit of being part of the community) could appeal to them.
  • Millennial property buyers are ambitious in their careers and seek to network with like-minded individuals. Related messages, such as achieving work-life balance and framing the purchase as a potential investment, could resonate with them.

While the above applies to a large segment of millennial property buyers in the UK, it is important to note that these are not exhaustive and many more nuances and characteristics can be explored to attract this segment. Other factors to consider are location as well as their specific attitudes to real estate brands and the industry as a whole. 

If you’d like to know more about this segment and how to appeal to them, we’d love to hear from you!

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As part of the Human Behaviour team, Ariane helps ensure that Reflect Digital’s work is centred on people by applying insights from audience research and behavioural science. She aims to inspire others to see different perspectives and appreciate the diversity in being human.

More about Ariane

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