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Businesses in Southbank

06 May 2020

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Melbourne Square goes digital

With COVID-19 forcing many Southbank businesses to adapt the way they work, one developer is embracing the challenge and transforming the way it communicates with customers.

Melbourne Square developer OSK Property has shifted its typical property purchasing process by bringing many of the elements online.

The developer has launched a series of virtual tours of completed apartments in collaboration with CBRE and investor networks, as well as digitised the contracts process with e-contracts.

Along with its virtual tours, OSK Property will ferry brochures, floor plans and materials boards directly to buyers, in addition to hosting private one-to-one appointments.

OSK property sales and marketing director Scott Jessop said these offers catered to the changing preferences of customers, who were now much more digitally savvy, while also providing new options in the current climate.

“At the end of the day we are here to support our customers and what we are hearing is that people want more options when purchasing and enquiring about property – in the current environment and even before COVID-19,” he said.

“It is a simple fact that customers live their lives online more than ever and so, as a developer, we have sought to find ways to bring our apartments to them in new ways.”

It is an initiative that seems to be paying dividends.

Melbourne Square commenced its first round of settlements in early 2020 and has a range of settlements scheduled over the course of the year. While a small amount of apartments remain for sale, Mr Jessop said they were still receiving interest.

In March alone, the team made more than $6.5 million in sales, with buyers still enquiring.

CBRE director Andrew Leoncelli said Melbourne’s real estate market had a good track record of emerging from regular property cycles and even major economic events, such as the global financial crisis, intact.

“A mortgage has never been cheaper in Australia in living history and people with cash deposits are leveraging that and still purchasing property,” he said.

“Foreign buyers stand to save up to 30 per cent compared to what they would have paid two years ago given the fall in the Australian dollar. The Australian property market is still open for business.”

Mr Jessop said Melbourne Square welcomed customer feedback on how else they could innovate and believed COVID-19 would drive greater innovation in digital marketing in the property industry.

“Australian consumers will emerge from COVID-19 with new habits, turning to digital first, more so than they ever have. People will come to expect the kind of access they are getting now via virtual tours, live streams and value-added content,” he said

“As an industry out, of COVID-19 we will need to innovate the customer experience at a at a scale we haven’t previously – particularly in relation to digital and content.”

“There will always be a place for beautiful display suites, but I think they will play a different role in the customer journey. It is impossible to say what will come, but digital content isn’t going anywhere.” •

For more information: melbournesquare.com.au

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