When it comes to selling new builds, computer generated images play a key part in your marketing strategy. Not only do they allow you to create interest while the property is still under construction, but they also help potential buyers to visualise what the final space will look like.
Here is everything you need to know about CGIs and how they can help you sell your property.
What are they?
Property CGIs are computer generated images that provide a realistic representation of a property that is either unfinished or yet to be built.
CGIs can be created for both the exterior and interior of a property, and fly-through videos or 3D sitemaps can even be created to show the layout of the plot.
The end goal is to bring a new development to life and to create an image that is as close to the final project as possible. In fact, technology has advanced in such a way that CGIs are now often mistaken for photographs.
How are they made?
First, the architect’s CAD (computer aided drafting) floor plans are combined with their elevation drawings (that show each side of the property with a flat perspective). The drawings are used to create a clay render, which is a virtual model of the property that’s completely white and grey. Next, using a list of materials including brick colour, brick type, tiles, doors and windows, these exterior materials are applied to the clay render.
Photographs of the site are used to pick a viewpoint for the final image and to inform the background, as well as landscaping plans for the grass, trees and pathways. Alternatively, montages are created by digitally imposing the property CGI onto a location photo.
When the CGI is complete, it is then sent to client for them to look over, and once it is approved then a full high resolution version can be rendered.
What properties are they for?
CGIs are generally used for new properties of either a residential or commercial nature. These could be anything from single homes or large plots to shopping and office complexes.
They can also be created for architects to use as part of a planning application, which is done by imposing the CGI onto an aerial photograph of the intended site. They are occasionally also used for properties undergoing refurbishment that will need to be let before completion.
What are the benefits?
When aspiring property owners can’t see or touch what they are buying, indicative images are essential. Buying a property off-plan is naturally risky, but CGIs help people to visualise the end result and be able to better imagine what it might be like to live there. This not only gives you a real head start on your marketing but helps to make your sales team’s job far easier.
Similarly, CGI fly through videos of a property or site help by taking potential buyers on a visual journey that shows them both the exterior and interior of the property – far more effective than relying on basic 2D drawings.
Using CGIs means that it is not necessary to build a show home to start making sales and gives you the flexibility of showing potential buyers other plots that are different sizes or layouts.
Where can I use them?
One of the great things about CGIs is that they can be used in practically every element of your marketing strategy. For example:
Using realistic renderings on your website has a huge visual impact on your site as a whole, and will also ensure that it looks credible and professional. Not only that, but they will encourage people to stay on your site for longer by giving visitors more to look at and helping to pique their interest in your project.
- Social media
Many social media platforms are highly driven by visual content, and a CGI of your new development is a great way to get more engagement and shares of your post. In turn, this helps to build brand awareness and secure more interest in your upcoming property.
- Content marketing
Creating content in the form of blog posts is a great way to improve SEO and help drive traffic to your website. While blogging used to be all about the writing, today images are an essential part of content marketing. Including CGIs in your blog posts will help them reach as many eyes as possible, again increasing your chances of having your content, and your project, shared.
- Email marketing
The contacts on your email list are invaluable when it comes to marketing your new development. They have already shown an interest in your projects by subscribing to your newsletter and you are able to reach them directly in a way you can’t via any other channel. CGIs can be used to provide sneak peeks to people on your email list and build a buzz around your new development.
A high-quality, professionally produced brochure doesn’t just sell bricks and mortar, it sells the lifestyle of the home, and good images are an essential part of that. When making a big investment, many people like to have something tangible that they can refer to, and using CGIs in your property brochure is a great visual prompt that can help them make a decision.
- Marketing suite
CGIs can also be transformed into large format prints that can be displayed around your marketing suite, instantly adding more interest to the space and giving your sales team something to easily refer to when talking to potential buyers.
- Site office
These large format prints can be used in a more practical way in your site office, helping to demonstrate a clearer picture of the end result to your construction team. It not only helps to motivate and inspire people, but also makes it easier to refer to specific details of the build.
When it comes to advertising, striking visuals are key to success, and CGIs are sure to catch the eye of potential buyers. Good adverts hinge on capturing a customer’s attention and communicating a visual message without the need for a lot of text – when it comes to new developments, CGIs are by far the best way to do this.
The local community often has a great interest in new developments, and as a result many will make it into the local press. Without images, however, you’re unlikely to get a story published. Making it into the local paper is great for your marketing, as it means your project will be seen by a wider audience in a highly targeted area.
Likewise, the images you use in on the signage on site will provide a talking point for the local community who will be interested in what you are building. In tandem with your digital marketing efforts, word-of-mouth can prove to be an invaluable asset to your property campaign.
CGIs can offer you value even after your project is done. Large format prints, banners and fly-throughs can all be used as part of your launch event, engaging your guests and demonstrating the journey and quality of your development.
It’s clear that great marketing is key in ensuring a good return on your property investment. With their visual impact, versatility and ability to connect with your buyers, CGIs play an invaluable part in reaching your ideal buyers.
If you’re thinking of using CGIs in an upcoming project or have any questions, please feel free to contact us by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 01494 358 888.