Help your vendors understand the power of digital marketing
Do you have hesitant vendors who are skeptical about the value of vendor-paid advertising?
Maybe they’re worried about marketing costs blowing out in a volatile or buyers’ market where sales results are less certain.
Maybe they can see the value of being listed on real estate portals or listing publications, but think social media is just for teenagers and will be a waste of money when it comes to selling their property.
Or maybe they simply don’t have the budget to spend on a comprehensive range of marketing options or weren’t expecting to pay for marketing and haven’t factored it into the costs of selling.
Your challenge as an agent is to help those vendors understand the power and reach of digital marketing, particularly on visually-focused social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram, and to demonstrate that it often offers a far better returns on their advertising investment.
Treat marketing as a separate sale
An effective approach to getting your clients on board with vendor-paid advertising can be to treat it like a separate sale, once you have successfully pitched for the listing.
In that listing pitch, it is important to give clients an idea of the marketing costs associated with the listing, but you can also explain that once on board, you will put together a range of marketing packages tailored to that vendor's property.
By doing this you avoid overwhelming your vendor with too much information in a listing pitch or making them feel pressured to make a marketing decision in the heat of the moment. Once you have the listing, arrange a follow-up meeting to discuss marketing options.
That meeting should focus on why vendor-paid advertising is an investment, and that there is an opportunity cost of not doing it which is a smaller audience reach, missing potential buyers, and possibly leaving a property lagging on the market for much longer.
Point out that when the market shifts in favour of buyers, it’s extremely important that marketing campaigns are actively seeking out those who will be interested in the vendors’ property. Buyers most likely to engage need to see their listing, and you can't wait for them to find it on their own.
Devoting a separate meeting to discuss marketing strategy sends the message to vendors that making the right marketing decision is extremely important, and that a well-thought-out, comprehensive marketing campaign is at the centre of every successful property sale.
It also demonstrates your market expertise, and your ability to use the best tools to market your vendor’s property.
Provide options and proof
To support your marketing sales pitch supply the vendor with a range of packages to choose from, based on different levels of spending, and which all include marketing on digital channels.
Don’t include so many options that it becomes impossible to choose the best one, and make sure they are relevant to the property, the market and the vendors. Three is a good number, with lower, medium, and higher budget options. If your vendors opt for the lower spend, ask if they are willing to re-visit that once the campaign is live and they can see how it’s tracking.
Back up those packages with case studies and results from previous campaigns, including at least one in which a property was sold to a buyer sourced through vendor-paid digital advertising.
Show your vendors the improved reach and engagement digital marketing offers, as well as the transparency and visibility of results. Where possible, compare the cost of a digital marketing campaign to a sales result that exceeded seller expectations, was well over the reserve or sold much more quickly than expected.
Explain that social media and other digital advertising allow you to actively target and nurture motivated and engaged buyers, for often a lower spend than traditional, more passive channels that depend on the buyer coming to you.
It’s also a good idea to include recent sales in your vendors’ local area that were marketed using digital and social campaigns so hesitant vendors can see for themselves that these platforms are now the norm for property sales.
Make sure you are clear about what each package includes, why it’s important and how that impacts the cost.
As part of each package, include an agreed-upon date for a follow-up meeting so vendors can discuss any further questions or worries they might have about the marketing campaign, and you can report on results.
Useful facts for vendors:
Australia: 23.6 million internet users (91% of the population) 11.5 million Facebook users
New Zealand: 4.63 million internet users (94.9% of the population) 4.5 million Facebook users