I didn’t coin it (Burke Smith did), but I love to use it:
Technology won’t replace agents; agents with technology will replace agents.
There’s a ton of talk about the next generation of Realtors and their unique approach to the business. The most common theme is that their use of technology and embrace of the collaborative culture will change the landscape of the industry so drastically that it will effectively bury the Old Guard. This prediction is most likely true; it’s hard to turn back the clock when a tidal wave of change is bearing down.
Don’t be so quick to embrace what’s new without taking along what’s tried and true. Learning from what worked well for the Baby Boomers will help you best understand how to not only reach them but also how to improve on these new tools. Your local audience responds to your local effort.
The farm you have carved out for yourself and the neighborhood you live in may not be responding to the traditional post cards, notepads and ‘items of value’ as much as you like. You would gladly trade all that printing and paper and pavement pounding for a few hours a week of blogging. Don’t be so quick to completely jump ship. There still may be some success in your efforts.
Google is not the local cafe, it’s not a doorknob, not a postcard nor a welcome mat. These are still ways offline to reach out locally. An offline campaign coupled with the appropriate call to action will help create exposure to the new tools you use to educate, incubate, cultivate and communicate.
Now, using the tools of the past (fliers, post cards etc.), advertise to the immediate neighborhood, not just that there is said event, but rather that there is a destination to give their opinion about the property. Let them talk about it’s amenities, location, value etc. Let the community pull the curtain back on the property. Their participation is valuable on so many levels; awareness, branding, exposure…
“Open House in Your Neighborhood” Join your community online at www.123ElmSt.com to discuss the value and amenities of this property”
It is in the best interest of a community to support the perceived value of the property for sale. Being invited to participate and encouraged to give their opinion is refreshing and compelling.
If, however, there is something to be uncovered that is not cheery (Nightmare on Elm St? – Related: Scary Real Estate Stories) it’s best that this information was disclosed before any offers were accepted.
Home Owner’s Association dues are rising, a development is being planned next door, should speed bumps be installed?
Beyond the “minutes” at the Town Meeting, everyone is given an equal platform to express their opinion and concern
These unique approaches to using the old tools make your marketing efforts stand out as useful and less disposable by involving the audience’s voice.
This is a true benefit of Web 2.0.
Audience participation allows for:
More effective branding
Greater data to shape
The ‘Reason’ of the Many.
Be the one developing the dialogue. Get the community involved and you will grow your readership.
It’s not always your direct pitch of service as a real estate agent that keeps you in the minds of the community, it’s your involvement.
And finally, a sure phenomena not to be overlooked: When the noise dissipates, it’s easier for your voice to be heard.
The less frequently that these traditional tools are employed, in turn the more effective their application will be.
If a territory is over saturated with marketing collateral, the noise cancels out the individual’s message.
This trend to online marketing by the masses may just open the door for more success offline.