Ok, unless you have been hiding under a rock recently you would have realised through the press that there is a downturn in the market, one that may be around for sometime to come. Any industry rises and falls in the real estate market present opportunities for some, but that is not the focus of this article.
What the focus of this article is understanding what all of this means and how you can better prepare for the downturns.
I a going to be very blunt with this article, as I think this approach is needed.
1. Newspapers do NOT sell properties.
One thing is now clear. Newspapers or paper Property Guides do NOT sell properties anymore. They do however raise awareness and also promote your brand and market differentiation.
The problem that newspapers will have to face is that the cost/value ratio gap is widening as the Internet continues to gather momentum. This will mean that continually raising line ad pricing will become increasingly difficult for them as more and more agents “get it”.
Yes consumers love flicking through them, but the overwhelming majority do their research online.
2. Your Website is your MVP (Most Valuable Product offering!
I have been saying this for years, invest in your website. Many agents still do not get this. You are in the business of marketing your vendors properties in an effective manner and the more you invest in and promote your own website, the less reliant you will be on traditional media and portals well into the future. Do not fall into the trap of creating a new website every 2 or 3 years. Instead invest in a proven solution for delivering listings and build on this system every year to communicate more effectively with potential buyers/tenants/landlords and vendors. Effective simple communication is the key!
Note: Flash presentation screens and movie intros to your website is NOT communication. Give the majority of visitors to your website what they want, not what you want.
3. List on Major Portals.
Real Estate Portals such as Realestate.com.au, Domain.com.au (Residential – Australia) ,Realenz.co.nz , Allrealestate.co.nz(Residential – NZ) and Commercialrealestate.com.au, Realcommercial.com.au (Commercial – Australia) are popular real estate portals and WILL present your listings with enquiries and are a must have if you are to be successful online.
However make sure your research is sound, many of these portals provide you with marketing information that delivers them greater revenues. Join as a standard member and invest the savings in your own website. Agents who think they have to be platinum or gold style members (upgrading and paying more) fall into the trap of just wasting money for bragging rights, which only costs more money as competitors too end up obtaining these packages, which basically leaves you back where you started but with bigger bills!
If you are a residential or commercial agent and you are not on major portals, then simply put – you are a lightweight! No form of excuse is good enough.
4. Discover Search Engines
Be a real player and discover marketing your website online, this is where you market is. Google Adwords. Yahoo (Overture) and the New MSN (Coming Soon) all give far greater results (targeted and cost per click) than any other form of advertising. You can also budget your daily and monthly spend with these search engines and results are almost immediate (within a few days) and can be measured.
Agents that focus or continue to focus on these things will ride the bumps and agents that do not will disappear into never ever land!