Realtor Marketing in 2009 – What’s Going to Change?

In a recent national survey conducted by The Real Estate Book, a leading publisher of online and in print real estate information in North America, top real estate professionals agents disclosed they are dedicating 75% of their marketing spending to specialty print, personal websites and Internet marketing.home_for_sale_sign_small

Why the change from newspaper? In the past few years the goal was to work with sellers and acquire listings. The more listings you acquired the more likely you were to advertise the listings in the newspaper. In 2009 due to the economy and the housing crisis the priorities have changed:

# 1 – finding more buyers
#2 – showing current customers you are working for them
#3 – getting more listings
#4 – promoting your name to other agents

Now Realtors are using the internet, where reportedly more than 75% of people start their search for a home.

Dan McCarthy, chairman and CEO of Network Communications Inc., which publishes The Real Estate Book and nearly 30 media brands in the housing area, adds,

“We have discovered that real estate agents who spread their marketing messages between efficient print and Internet resources experience significantly more impact in driving leads than using one medium or the other solely.” He continues, “There is no question the U.S. housing market will never be the same.  But, at the core, it will not be all that different.  The practical and emotional reasons that a person buys or sells a home will stay the same, even while the tools and resources that they use to complete that transaction change and evolve.”

Among its findings, The National Real Estate Agents Study revealed that:

  • More than half of respondents (57%) spend more than $500 in a typical month on advertising, marketing, branding and promotion. The median monthly spending on advertising, marketing, branding and promotion is $622.
  • Respondents said that in the current economy, the most important goal is “finding more buyers,” followed by “showing current customers you are working for them,” “getting more listings,” and “promoting your name to other agents,” with agents using specialty print stating significantly more likely than non-users to worry about showing current home shoppers they are working and about promoting their names to other agents.
  • Respondents spend about 25% of their media spending on each of the following:
    • Specialty print
    • Internet marketing
    • Broker’s own Web site
  • Virtually all respondents use some form of Internet marketing. Over the next six months, the channels respondents expect to spend the most money on are Internet marketing (40%) and the respondents’ own personal Web sites (32%).
  • The median amount spent on Internet marketing is $196 each month. 38% spend more than $250 per month on all forms of Internet marketing.
  • 86% of the respondents had a personal web site in addition to their broker web site.  61% spent money on search engine marketing to promote themselves.  25% used blogs or social media as a promotional tool.
  • Only 5% of those agents surveyed expect to spend more on newspaper ads.
  • 85% of respondents measure the effectiveness of the money they spend marketing their services.
  • 78% of respondents track the leads they get from various media and other sources.

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