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CommonFloor.com breaks new ground in marketing

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MUMBAI: Everything one ever desires can now be obtained with the click of a button and one such thing on the never-ending list, is real estate. Whether one wants to buy, sell or rent property without resorting to dusty travels and dingy meetings with shady brokers and real estate agents, now there are portals galore to fulfil our needs. Taking a cue from the boom in the online real estate segment is CommonFloor.com.

CommonFloor.com, a one stop shop real estate destination, which brings builders, buyers owners etc together under one roof, is now riding high on innovative marketing strategies to rise above the clutter.

One such marketing strategy was the portal?s association with the recently released film Katti Batti starring Imran Khan and Kangana Ranaut. CommonFloor was integrated in the script of the film, wherein the protagonists choose their dream house with the help of the portal.

Speaking to Indiantelevision.com, Commonfloor.com co-founder Vikas Malpani said, ?It?s a wonderful link up to the film, which appeals to mass audience. Basically what we have been doing is experimenting with all possible new age media, which connects to young brands. We were the first ones to tie up with The Viral Fever and one of their series Permanent Roommates, which was quite a global success.?

According to Malpani, movie integration and activation helps connect with audience on ground as well as reinforce the brand.  

With the ever increasing cometition between existing and emerging real estate portals from Magicbricks.com to Housing.com, it is always a daunting task to manage to get the required hits and enhance interaction.

?At the end of the day, a solid product and right perception really helps you to get the brand going. Moreover, in the online real estate space, replicating or competing with existing formats is not easy as a larger vision and skill set is required to take competition heads on,? asserts Malpani.

Malpani is of the opinion that the brand?s differentiating factors are based on the product, the level of interaction as well as consumer?s experience with the brand.

As far as marketing strategy goes, CommonFloor has a radical and a rather confidant approach to it. Having a product worthy enough to keep themselves ahead is their marketing mantra.

Not in the least bit daunted by the competition in the space, Malpani says, ?We believe that we have the entire ecosystem upfront and there are no competitors who have the strategy or vision for future of real estate in country like we do. So in that sense, we are not worried about our competitors. What we are trying to do in our marketing strategy is to connect with our audience, who can understand and make decisions. We at CommonFloor are there to empower them with information so that they can make their decision.?

Throwing light on the company?s growth, he says, ?As of now 10 per cent of residential viewers take to the online medium for the real estate space. We believe that in next five years that number will touch 50 per cent, which is 50 per cent of close to about the $180 billion online real estate market. So there is a golden opportunity and we are on the right track.?

For the promotions and activation around Katti Batti, while the brand name was integrated in the movie, online activation in the form of contests was also carried out wherein string association could be established.

?Our social media is more about putting out the right information, keeping the audience engaged to our pages and put out relevant real estate trend information, which can be consumed over social media. We also interact with people on Facebook and Twitter, who are looking for a house and connect them with relevant options,? informs Malpani.

While CommonFloor.com earmarks about 70 - 80 per cent of its marketing spends on television and print, the rest is dedicated to social media activation.  

As online real estate companies are briskly climbing stairs two steps at a time, the next phase of growth in the space as well as players? strategy for maximum brand reach will be interesting to watch out for.

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