Which are the most effective marketing tools used by estate agents?
In the next few blogs we will be looking at different marketing tools used by estate agents and asking whether clients are getting value for money.
Traditionally estate agents were known for churning out flowery, gushing PR blurb, wilfully misdescribing damp and decaying hovels in the most serene language.
Eventually property misdescriptions legislation put an end to this by making false or misleading claims a criminal offence. So now, agents are suposed to ask their client sellers to check the draft details – and validate any potentially spurious claims.
However in our experience at Rightsurvey it’s not unusual for draft details to be riddled with silly errors and spelling mistakes. Terraced houses are described as semis, 1970s houses become ‘period properties’, even addresses get misquoted. Strangely, mistakes mostly seem to make the properties in question sound more desirable. So sellers need to check these carefully: by approving a pile of misleading nonsense, a seller could unwittingly become an accessory to a criminal offence – not the best start.
One thing pretty much all agents seem to manage pretty well is to come up with decent photos, invariably featuring the property framed by a suitably tranquil blue sky. Whether any agents would go so far as to ‘photoshop out’ inconveniently located pylons and chip shops is a moot point. But this can be a double-edged sword if a brilliant wide-angle photo leads to a first reaction of disappointment when prospective buyers see the property in the flesh.
Mailings and phone calls
In days of old, long before the Internet, selling a house required a lot of hard graft – and a great deal of licking of stamps, envelopes and anything else that could promote a sale.
Jealously guarded lists of applicants would be ‘mail-shot’ on a weekly basis until they capitulated from beneath a blanket of property particulars. After viewing, prospective buyers would be subjected to a ruthless telesales operation, arms being twisted until they finally submitted and made an offer.
Telephone follow-up calls are, of course, still an important part of the sales operation, but emails have largely superseded the mailshot. Yet reports of its demise are premature, since one problem with relying on emails is that they’re often deleted or filtered as spam before they’re ever read. A well-designed, colourful, glossy sales brochure arriving on your breakfast table can be far more effective at grabbing the attention
Our next blog – coming soon ……
More estate agents’ marketing tools – do they make much difference?
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