Facebook has announced the launch of a social ad engine for property.
It will enable the listing of properties on its platform, where home hunters can easily search for them.
Announcement of the launch was made at the mind-blowingly huge Cartus conference in America last week, attended by 10,000 delegates including a handful of UK agents.
They included Richard Fowler, of Richard James in Wellingborough, Northamptonshire, who are the current holders of the Relocation Agent Network agent of the year.
The visit to Las Vegas was part of the prize.
Fowler said that the announcement by Facebook was very thin on detail, with no mention of pricing, or whether the launch was exclusive to America.
Fowler told EYE: “It was announced to us as being hot off the press, and because the audience was overwhelmingly American, there were no specifics as to which countries it will be rolled out in.
“However, Facebook normally treats itself as one platform.
“This could be a game changer for the property portals – and that was certainly the view among the delegates.
“It could also potentially be the next stage of a private sales site.
“The main property portals in the UK should certainly see this as a threat.”
Also announced in Las Vegas was a new product called Ojo, to be launched soon.
This was held out to be the next development in Artificial Intelligence – ie, the tech world will be able to know when a customer is ready to sell before they know themselves.
Fowler said that in the US, realtors use video heavily. For example, a selfie video will be sent to a client to answer questions as this format is seen as more likely to express emotion rather than an email which could be read in the wrong context.
It has been suggested that Facebook will become a video-only platform in the near future.
However, despite American agents’ love affair with technology, Fowler said that the overwhelming message is that USA clients still value dealing with ‘real people’ above everything else, and are happy to pay for this.
Fees have remained consistent at 5.2%, and 98% of customers start their home moving experience online before engaging with a broker or agent.