Earlier this week, on October 20th in fact, I read an article in REALTYTIMES titled, "What Good Does Print Advertising Do?" The article was written by Bob Hunt, based on some conversations he's had recently with his son Scott. Both Bob and Scott are Realtors in south Orange County, California.
The topic was, do homes advertised in print sell for higher prices and faster than homes not advertised in print? Pretty interesting subject, I thought. Their work concluded that REO homes in their market, which tended not to be advertised in print, sold faster (41 days) and closer to listing price (97%) than market rate homes, which were more frequently advertised in print, (91 days) and (91%) of list price.
Now, I'm sure the very low initial listing price of many REO's is a huge draw and people will find a way to seek them out; print or no print. But it still is an interesting point.
So the question is why do so many real estate agents and companies continue to advertise in print? What do they know that others may not? And, what good does print advertising really do?
Bob Hunt answers these same questions in his article this way:
1. Home sellers expect their home to be advertised locally in print. Period. Many, many people, including home sellers, believe that print is a strongly beneficial tool. Especially in today's much slower market. They want everything going for them possible. Their perception is that print will help sell their home and successful agents satisfy this perception to acquire listings.
2. Most importantly, home buyers use print heavily in the process of finding a new home. In fact, recent data from the National Association of REALTORS, showed that nearly half of people looking for a new home used print advertising as one of their sources of information. Wow! Looks like the sellers insisting on local print exposure weren't wrong after all. It's rare that the buyer prospect actually buys the specific home they call about out of the ad. But valuable relationships are formed when these calls come in that often result in a successful transaction on another home. Thus, the print investment clearly worked for these companies and agents.
I think of it this way; we live in a multi-channel world. I want my product story told and sprinkled across as many of those channels as possible. Home sellers appear to want this to.
I'd love to hear your thoughts.