Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Wise And Not-So-Wise Marketing Strategies

I had a couple of interesting conversations today involving marketing strategies. The first was with a woman who is about to sign up for my service. I'll be entering her into the Riverside County and Desert Area MLS systems (her property is in Palm Springs). This is going to give her exposure to agents and the public from the Desert to Riverside County, up through OC and LA to Sacramento (and 5 other counties), through Napa, Sonoma, Mendocino, Solano and Marin Counties, over and through 3 Bay Area Counties and down through the Silcon Valley to Monterey (5 more counties!) It will cost her a pittance. Probably under $300 (she's going through an affiliate I work with). Apparently there are about 8 properties similar to hers in her complex. She's decided to price hers second-to-the-lowest (the lowest is a bank repo). She's also going to offer a 4% commission. In other words, she's not messing around--she's ready to sell and willing to do what's necessary to get the job done. Her logic is perfect.

The second conversation was with a previous client. She and her husband cancelled their original listing with me, months ago, because they were leaving the State for awhile. At this point, they are back and have decided to go it alone. She said the MLS never did them any good (though it sounded like they had received at least one offer that they had rejected, now with some regret). She and her husband have decided to limit their advertising to small venues, local city throw aways--forget about the MLS, realtor.com, the Sacramento Bee. She read a book that said small publications are the best. And they are very good--if all you want to do is attract a local audience. But she lives in the Sacramento area and would like to attract a Bay Area buyer. When I mentioned that realtor.com would probably really help her out in that regard, she said her property was too expensive for that audience. I couldn't figure out what she meant. Bay Area buyers can't afford Sacramento? Or realtor.com only attracts low-end buyers. Either way, I think she's wrong and her strategy doesn't look promising.

Time to write that Marketing chapter in my-yet-to-be-actualized Real Estate book.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Out of my head and into yours

I wish I could post--verbatim--some of the interesting conversations I have every day with people who want to TALK REAL ESTATE. Mine is a non-traditional real estate company. In a nutshell, I post For Sale By Owners to their local Multiple Listing Service for a very low fee for $199. As such, my approach is entirely different from that of the standard real estate agent or broker. (Compare my fee to the industry standard of a 5 or 6% commission.)
Once people know what it is I do, they really open up and tell me the truth about how they feel about the industry and many of the agents they've dealt with. I'm also asked great questions and have the opportunity to throw ideas around--theirs and mine. So the logical next step was to get a blog so I can at least paraphase the gist of some of these conversations and, perhaps, add an occasional p.s. to those wonderful chats.

Please feel free join the fray. cf