Despite some problems last week, the Just Listed Real Estate Print Guide has had a great debut. All of my clients will receive a copy across Australia and to be honest I am very impressed.
The Just Listed Real Estate Guide is owned by Sensis (Telstra) and is part of their ongoing assault into the major players (news Ltd and Fairfax) traditional “rivers of gold” which has been jobs cars and houses. For many years the bulk of revenues from these media giants has been made of these classifieds and this is a serious assault on their domain. Just Listed currently only operate around the inner Sydney regions but have plans to launch nationwide by the middle of 2005.
The Good (agents)
The great thing about this is that agents should see some downward pricing pressure on line ads not only from majors but regional (locality) based newspapers.
The Good (consumers)
For as long as we can remember (or I can) newspaper real estate guides list properties by agents, this means consumers pretty much had to search through each agents ads to find listings in the areas they were interested in. The Just Listed Guide lists them by regions and then suburbs, which makes it much faster to find what you are looking for.
The Bad (agents)
The reason agents like the other format (listed by agency) was because agents are always trying to differentiate themselves from their competitors so the way they presented their vendors listings and their brand was one way they achieved this. With this new format (if it becomes the norm) it pretty much erodes agents brand identity as each listing is almost exactly the same. Now for agents that have never really valued their brand this will be great but for the majority of agents that have always tried to maintain quality in all their communications, it basically takes them back to the field.
The Bad (consumers)
Now this is more relevant to the Sydney region at this stage but imagine the problems now facing these agents as they have to formulate a strategy as to where to list their vendors properties.
Print Real Estate Guides
– Sydney Morning Herald (Fairfax)
– Daily Telegraph (News Ltd)
– Inner City Courier
– Home Hound
– Just Listed
Agents cannot simply list in all as it will be extremely expensive, especially since it has recently been a tougher period for real estate. I would suggest agents formulate a strategy around the popularity of these guides. This will mean taking a solid approach to understanding the markets at all times and having a flexible strategy.
It is time agents took the lead and came together as a group to negotiate better pricing deals (are you listening real estate institutes). Competition is good and can drive pricing down but with so many guides on the market it can be very confusing for potential vendors.