28 November 2022

A Coffee with Darren Blair, Blair Property Group

A Coffee with Darren Blair, Blair Property Group
Blair Property Group is a full-service project marketing team focused on delivering standout results across off-the-plan sales, digital, media, and marketing, powered through the best technology available.

We caught up with the main man Darren Blair to talk about his new company and early successes at Louise;

Firstly tell us a little about your journey into BPG – and what drove the decision to start up a boutique agency?
First and foremost, my passion is in off the plan residential property. For me, there is something about turning the dream or idea of a home into reality for those that end up purchasing. Turning the idea of a building to a thriving community where people will create memories for a lifetime.

Keeping in line with this, I desired to develop my own business and brand that could encapsulate this feeling. When assessing the opportunity, I found that there was a way to combine my three passions – sales & marketing, client service, and technology. 

By combining these three pillars, I felt there was a chance to create something valuable for developers and the people I will interact with daily. Too often we find that there is a breakdown between these three things, so building an agency that brings these closer together ultimately streamlines the process but also gives a project the best chance of success. 

Our people-centric methodology differentiates our offering by focusing on working very closely with developers to feel like we are an in-house resource for them, creating a one-team, one-dream scenario. This inherently produces a fantastic result for those that are looking to make it their future home. 

What does a post-covid audience look like? Anything that surprises you about the current market?
The market is going through some change currently, and the idea of what a home means to people has shifted. And, whilst there are still some fundamentals that haven’t changed, the era we are currently in has put how we live and where we live into hyper-focus. 

Keeping this in mind purchaser behaviours have changed - no matter what type of off-the-plan home someone is purchasing there is a degree of personalisation that most are looking to achieve.   

Who is buying right now? What are they mostly buying?
The launch of Louise in August was welcomed with unbelievably strong enquiry rates in a challenging market with interest rate rises. Yet, people that have engaged with the project have all shared common thoughts that the location is incredible – as good as it gets, and the building design was masterfully delivered by Cera Stribley. 

Since launch, we have achieved a very strong sales result that will ultimately get the project construction commenced on schedule. Early days we spent a lot of time researching who the potential buyers for the project will be.  And interestingly, the target groups whom we identified in the early stages have transpired into those who will eventually call Louise home. 

LOUISE is a dynamic project and there is a spread of apartment types in the building so naturally, you will see a range of buyers of different ages and lifestyle orientations looking to call the project home. 

Downsizers were always a core focus for us, and they are the project’s strongest buyer type since launch. The decision to purchase their forever home in Louise is a testament to how good the project is. With specific apartments sold for close to $4m in the development, it’s a clear display that the project has unwavering trust from the local market. 

In terms of apartment types, the development itself had a range of 1,2,3,4-bedroom apartments at launch, yet by listening to the market and understanding our buyer needs we have taken the agile approach by changing some of the plates in anticipation of unlocking new markets. Through great work by the Samuel and Cera Stribley teams, we have unlocked sales that may not have been there to begin with. 

How are you catering to this new market, and buyer behaviour?
There are a few nuances to getting a result in LOUISE. First and foremost, our digital-centric approach to Louise from a marketing standpoint, delivered through a content-rich strategy that felt young and energetic, has yielded very strong enquiry results. This relates to the total number of enquiries the project has received to date and the overall cost per lead and cost per sale. 

Secondly, delivering a strategy with numerous touchpoints and engagements post enquiry is critical to the overall success of getting in touch and staying top of mind with prospective purchasers. 

Finally, the Samuel team’s agile thinking has allowed us to deliver a level of personalisation that creates trust with each buyer that considers the project.
What's the future look like for the OTP market in Melbourne? And how can BPG help?
Over the last few years, the off-the-plan apartment market has witnessed a few headwinds, yet with that said the future looks bright for new projects coming to market, due to the severe undersupply of inner, fringe, and middle ring projects that will add to the overall housing supply in a growing market. 

We are at the precipice of some major changes in terms of how these properties are marketed and sold. The industry started with offline ways of marketing a project, from letterbox drops to print or signage. This has now transitioned into a primarily digital-focused campaign strategy and where the agents win from here, is how well they can master this – from data strategies to automation will be where project marketers set themselves apart – this is ultimately where Blair Property Group stands out. 

For several years, we have been building out various PropTech and data products that have an impact on the entire customer journey.

What does Blair Property Group stand for? Why are you doing differently?

We are creative, always thinking out of the box and delivering innovative ideas, driven by the latest technology. We strive to be the market leader in modern property solutions, reinvesting our revenue in leading-edge technologies while exploring new possibilities. Just because it’s always been done a certain way, doesn’t mean there isn’t a better way.

We believe in collaboration, and our team delivers excellence in customer service, creating memorable moments through their property journey. For our developer partners and stakeholders, we offer smart strategies, platforms, and automation, from processes and reporting to databases and dashboards. We collaborate to tailor tech solutions for each project, enhancing the overall experience. 

In addition to this, our experienced and knowledgeable team put in the work to make things happen. With great passion and attention to detail, we are always on the ball, working hard to maximize each project’s revenue and profitability. 

And lastly, we believe in the power of communication, both with purchasers and each of the stakeholders we deal with. Our focus is to build relationships that last for years and years.