Consumers no longer buy products – they buy lifestyles. It’s a growing global trend that we value as social media marketers and consumers.

This is especially true with social media and blogging, where people are more receptive to indirect marketing messages that keep it authentic. For example, we all still want a good deal, but seeing how a blogger incorporates a product into their lives adds perceived value, in spite of us knowing it’s #sponsored.

Looking for lifestyle value over material value ranges anywhere from the food we eat to the phones we use. We prioritize these values when it comes to how we travel, where we live, and the real estate we buy. This value is also important to our client Oakwyn Realty. With Oakwyn and our team recognizing that home buyers also see this value, it’s been a focus of our social media, content creation, and video production.

Showcasing the new downtown office, their agents’ lifestyle and the downtown lifestyle

Lifestyle is the new luxury: Experiences, wellness, and convenience

In recent years, demand in luxury market has been shifting from material goods to experiences. The buying power of millennials only continues to grow and a popular Harris Group study found 78% would rather spend money on experiences than on material goods. A decades-long Cornell University study found happiness is derived from experiences, not things.

Experiential purchases also enhance our social lives more than material items, becoming part of our identity. These days on Facebook or Instagram you’re way more likely to see someone post about travelling to a yoga retreat, their morning spin session or a homemade healthy dinner over a new pair of shoes or some gadget they just bought.

Oakwyn’s Vancouver Condo Team lives the condo lifestyle, with fitness, fun and work at their fingertips

Euromonitor International identified wellness as a top consumer trend for 2017, calling healthy living and wellness as the new status symbol. Boutique fitness trends like yoga, spinning, boxing, and athleisure. Healthy eating with nutritionists, juice bars, plant-based diets, eating ethically and locally. Wellness travel with yoga retreats, bootcamps and spas. And yes Vancouver is essentially ground zero for this stuff.

While millennials dominate the headlines, these trends are growing with older generations as well. Inman Real Estate News sees a crossover with baby boomers and millennials in valuing lifestyle and convenience. Both groups are less concerned about the size of a home and more about the location. Demand for condos and townhomes is skyrocketing, with both offering easy access to the city lifestyle. Walking instead of driving to your favourite supermarket, cafe or gym. Living near entertainment, activities and friends. PricewaterhouseCoopers identified that the live-work-play lifestyle trend in real estate will continue to grow in 2018 and beyond.

But for anyone lucky enough to live here, we don’t need any stats or studies to know why Vancouver is considered one of the most livable cities, year after year.

Elisha shows her clients how she starts a productive Vancouver day

Vancouver real estate: Investing in a lifestyle

All real estate in Vancouver is a luxury, with the price per square foot higher than almost all cities in the world (Coming in 6th for condos and 8th for homes in 2017). One big part of this equation of why Vancouver real estate is a luxury purchase is it’s the ultimate lifestyle purchase. You can buy a much larger property elsewhere, but you won’t get the Vancouver lifestyle. When you buy here, you’re also buying into your neighbourhood. You’re investing in real estate, but you’re also investing in your quality of life with everything this beautiful part of the world has to offer.

Meeting the neighbourhood and agents at the same time

A personal connection between agents and buyers

For real estate brokerages and agents in Vancouver, you’re selling the lifestyle as much as the property. With the millennial generation now in their 20s to late 30s, their home buying power is only going up. And the Vancouver lifestyle is what many of them want to buy.

No big brokerages in Vancouver capitalize on the value of this modern lifestyle that seeks out experiences, wellness and convenience. For Oakwyn and AntiSocial, the Vancouver lifestyle is ingrained in our DNA. This makes the lifestyle focus of our collaboration natural and effective. – Geordie Flanagan, Sales Director

Facebook cover video that greets page visitors with a snapshot of their agency’s culture

Oakwyn’s services, benefits and advantages are key elements in our marketing. But with a home the most significant life purchase for most people, it’s so much more than just selling and buying the physical space.

With Oakwyn’s agents, we let their personalities and lifestyle shine through our videos and social media. We want their clients to know their agents live and breath everything that is Vancouver. We want their clients to relate to them or even aspire to their local lifestyle. To know what they’re really getting when they buy in Vancouver. – Scott MacKay, Project Manager

Since buying a home is such a big moment in life, the agent also becomes part of it. Sharing through their lifestyles gives potential clients a personal connection before they even meet. This is something a video tour of a property can’t offer, but when combined with, becomes a true showcase of what a home buyer is investing their money and their life in.