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City skylines and annual insight at the RIBA J briefing 2018

We are Mobas. The Brand Transformation Agency.

This year, as The Royal Institute of British Architects Journal (RIBA J) celebrates 125 years of print, our PR and Social Media Account Executive, Amy, attended its annual briefing and networking event hosted at the new HTA Design Centre in Whitechapel, London. Here’s what she learned…


On arrival golden hour was engulfing the city and I was promptly escorted to the roof terrace to witness panoramic skyline views. As drinks flowed freely, I was introduced to some of the most influential faces within the architectural industry, including those from the publication.
The evening consisted of valuable talks from an array of industry experts, amplifying my knowledge and awareness of the architecture and property sectors.

Content marketing is continuing to rise
In 2017 RIBA J saw 40% of its annual profit driven by content marketing. This highlights the importance of valuable, relevant and consistent content. As we see the millennial generation progressing within the industry, brands cannot rely on a ‘one-size-fits-all’ model. This generation values experiences and interactivity over hard selling and are more likely to be turned off by blatant ads and promotional messaging. For those who are well established within the industry, adding value is key. The right content, to the right person, at the right time.


Social media is a great way to interact with specifiers
David Bain, who conducts the National Building Specification (NBS) ‘What Specifiers Want’ survey, highlighted how 82% of specifiers currently use social media, with a further 8% looking to invest resources into the platforms within the next five years. Richard Tomlin, Advertising Sales Manager at the Journal, engaging visuals, and, as our social media team keep stressing, video content is becoming ever more important. Sophisticated social media marketing for both B2B and B2C audiences continues to rise and become an increasingly important part of a brand’s marketing mix. Not sure how to use yours wisely? We can help, with everything from training and strategy through to profile management, multimedia content creation and social advertising.   


The future is virtual
One of the stand-out progressions in architecture and property is the use of immersive technologies such as mixed reality (MR), augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). Digitisation is transforming an array of industries. However, architects are witnessing somewhat of a revolution which Mobas recently touched upon in an award-winning whitepaper for client Reynaers. Currently 35% of specifiers are utilising MR, AR or VR technologies, with a further 29% looking to invest in the technology within the next five years. VR head-mounted displays (HMDs) have the power to communicate buildings, and create depth and spatial awareness that simply cannot be matched by more traditional methods. Walking through, touching and experiencing projects before a single foundation has been laid could become the norm which we are seeing from Reynaers through its investment in VR facility Avalon.

Going green
The industry holds responsibility to reduce energy consumption during the construction process as well as keeping a buildings emissions low on completion. In 2017, the Government agreed a deal with the construction industry to halve emissions in the built environment sector by 2025. According to NBS research, 80% of specifiers believe that environmental performance will be included in specifications in the near future. The use of VR alone could significantly reduce the use of materials within the design process. After all, new buildings and developments shape the future of our landscape, so let’s make it a sustainable one.


Looking ahead, immersive technologies and high engagement are paving the way to success within the industry. Companies are working ever more closely with PR and social media teams to engage effectively with their desired audiences, and I for one hope to be transported into a virtual building in the very near future!
 

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