- Technology has changed where we market listings, but it still hasn’t changed how.
- Listing agents have been using a shotgun approach; it is time to start using a laser instead.
- This new approach can save agents and homeowners both time and money.
Marketing is the heart of what real estate agents do, especially for those who primarily focus on listings rather than buyer clients.
Undoubtedly, the internet and social media have changed where we advertise and market our properties, but thus far, it has not changed how.
In fact, the how of marketing real estate has not changed in many, many years.
The old way of marketing
Common wisdom dictates that listing agents should expose their properties to as many eyeballs as possible in hopes that volume will lead to a buyer. And undoubtedly it does work, much like a shotgun.
If you aim a shotgun at a target, it is hard to miss, since the spray of bullets covers such a large area.
That something works does not mean it cannot be improved, though.
Consider how much ammunition is wasted using a shotgun; a majority of the pellets don’t even hit their intended target. That is essentially what listing agents have been doing for generations now — generally hitting their targets, but wasting a great deal of capital and resources that could otherwise be re-appropriated for other properties and projects, or simply put in to their pocket.
We call this old, tired approach macro-targeting.
A new way of marketing
In our digital age with the internet, social media and data, there is a much better way.
We now have more information at our fingertips than ever before, and it is time we started using it to elevate the effectiveness of our craft as real estate agents.
Consider that for every home, there is a profile of the most likely buyer. Take a Greenwich, Connecticut, home, selling for $1.3 million with three bedrooms, three baths and half an acre in walking distance to the train station.
The next buyer of this property is more than likely between the ages of 32 and 36 (34, to be exact), has one to two children, lives in Greenwich or Manhattan, and has an annual income between $212,000 and $260,000.
How do I know this? Through micro-targeting.
Micro-targeting seeks some of the following information:
- Average age of owners of comparable properties
- How long they have lived in those properties
- How many children they have
- Their likely income range
- Whether they have parents living with them, or children, or neither
- Where comparable owners live
- Where they lived previously
- Where comparable owners work
- Their likely interests, such as golf, sailing, horseback riding, etc.
- Where they likely vacation
The value of this information is then found in a listing agent’s ability to recognize, and then target, who is most likely to buy a particular property, thus increasing the amount they can achieve in a final sale, and decreasing the amount of time to finalize said sale.
It is time to put down the shotgun, and start using a laser.
Chadwick Ciocci is the founder and CEO of Chilton & Chadwick – Global Real Estate Concierge. He is also the vice president of Culture Home, a real estate development company in Greenwich, Connecticut.