While putting the finishing touches on our 2010 Business Plan, including detailed marketing strategies and a budget, it was interesting for me to note the following observations according to the National Association of Realtors. NAR asked over 100,000 consumers to rank the “usefulness” of information sources when ‘buying’ real estate. Here are some of their findings for 2009:
The real estate agent (81%) edged out the Internet (77%) for the top spot as “very useful” for the first time in years! Within the margin of error, this is considered a tie.
Yard signs, considered “very useful” 42% vs. 46% in 2008, virtually unchanged.
In the top 10 categories, billboards went from 9th place to 4th place for usefulness. Hmmmmm…Interesting.
Television, which was ranked in 10th place last year earned the #5 spot in 2009.
Home book magazines dropped from 27% “very useful” to 90% “not useful” in one year!
Newspaper advertising went from 29% “very useful” to 98% “somewhat useful”.
Buyers ranked Open Houses as “very useful” 40% of the time in 2008, but in 2009 buyers only ranked open houses “very useful” 10% of the time!
Briefly, taking all of this into consideration, I’ve concluded that The NaplesRealEstate.com Team will continue our focus on Internet marketing, expand our social media networking and devise time management plans for staying organized and on-task online. You will NOT see our smiling faces on a billboard or a bus stop bench…We are checking into the costs of TV advertising…We are downsizing and/or eliminating most print media…But, we will continue to do open houses because although it is obvious that buyer’s habits are changing, we still think that next to personal referrals, the best way to meet and build rapport with a potential customer is face-to-face. *Michele Peppe has taught Business Planning and Time Management to both new agents at Coldwell Banker and to real estate professiosnals at Arvida University as well as being a platform speaker at a number of local and state engagements.