Property Marketing Tips that can Help Make Spring, Your Best Season this Year
It’s finally springtime and real estate markets are seeing more listings, open houses, viewings, and closed deals. Undoubtedly, spring is one of the busiest times of the year in the real estate market. That can also make it challenging to stand out in a crowded marketplace. So, let’s go over some property marketing tips to stand out from that crowd.
1. Show off Your Rental with Great Advertising Photos
Notice we didn’t say “good”? Information overload nowadays means you have very little time to grab a prospective tenant’s attention, so they actually read your ad. Photos should show off the best features of your rental and be crisp and well lit. Most people think it’s best to take photos on a sunny day, but too much sunlight can actually cause a washout effect. It’s actually best to take photos on a slightly cloudy day, so the clouds will diffuse the sunlight. Similarly, when you take interior photos, a single lightbulb in an otherwise dark room can cause a hotspot effect and make the room look drab. Find a way to get a 2nd light source to diffuse the hotspot effect. Do you need a professional camera? Not really, most newer cell phone cameras will take high enough quality photos these days if you use them right.
2. Write a Descriptive & Memorable Ad
Go read a bunch of ads from your competition and we’re sure you’ll find most of them all sound the same and so, a few hours later you won’t remember much about most of them. See the problem? So, make sure your ads are more memorable than the competition! Don’t be vanilla like everyone else — be perky, or witty or funny, be anything but boring.
How do you do this? Well, either you put in the time to improve your writing skills, or you use the greatest form of flattery – which is copying the work of others. Go through a bunch of ads and pick out the memorable ones or at least the parts of the ads that are memorable. Then cut & paste the pieces together. Just make sure all the pieces have the same style and flow well together. And just to make sure you aren’t creating a Frankenstein monster of an ad, have a friend review your ad before publishing it, preferably someone in advertising or marketing.
Warning: Don’t let your description violate Fair Housing laws. Dealing with a Fair Housing lawsuit is not cheap!
3. Be As Visible As Possible
Whether you’re still trying to figure out how to post on your personal Facebook page or struggling to understand the #hashtag nonsense on twitter – your competitors are already out there getting the traction they need. If you’re going to be competitive in this busy real estate season – you need to be where prospects can find you and the best way to do that is through social media. Your current and potential future tenants use social media as a trusted source for news, entertainment, and communication. This is especially true for millennial renters who are used to having information readily available on demand.
Even if you figure out how to post your snarky ad with snazzy pics on Zillow and Craigslist, those are just the tip of the iceberg. There’s also Facebook Marketplace, Trulia, Hotpads, Oodle, Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat, Thumbtack, etc. You could spend hours posting your ad to each of these sites individually or consider using a site like Rentlinx, where you just post it once and they syndicate it for you.
The most important goal is to get as many eyeballs as possible on your rental ad!
4. Monitor Results & Listen to the Market
So, you posted your sweet ad, but no one’s calling for showings. Or you’re getting plenty of inquiries, but no showings. Now what?
Obviously, something’s wrong you just need to figure out what and how to address it.
Not enough eyeballs on your ad – if prospects aren’t looking at your ad, they’re not going to call for a showing. Many of the sites we mentioned earlier allow you to check and see how many people have viewed your ad. It may take a bit of time to figure out how to access this data, but how else are you going to know if your ad isn’t generating buzz? Once you verify you’ve got a problem with low views, there’s only a few logical reasons causing this: a slow market, your ad is not on the right websites or your ad title isn’t catchy enough. Unfortunately, there’s not much you can do about a slow market, except sell or be patient. Regarding the right websites, find the sites that a lot of your competition is using. You may think that your ad having no competition is a good thing, but why would a prospect want to spend time on a site with few choices to view? Finally, many prospects use ad titles to filter what they will ignore and what they’ll spend their time on. Is yours catchy enough to stand out from the crowd?
Eyeballs, but no calls – if people are looking at your ad, but not calling with questions or wanting to see it, then either they aren’t impressed with your description and additional pics or they don’t see enough value for your price. It’s surprising how often we write what we think is a killer ad, but it falls on its face. So, we change it and then get blown away with the surge in activity. Sometimes you just have to listen to the market and be wiling to change to try to appeal to it. Regarding value versus price, you should have already done your market research to price your rent, but if you haven’t now would be a good time to do so. Even the best ad ever may not be enough to entice prospects if you’re priced too high.
Calls, but no showings – so prospects are interested or desperate enough to call for more info, but then aren’t following through for a showing. Again, it could be that they aren’t seeing enough value for the price. It could also be due to how quickly you return missed calls, what you’re telling them during the call or how you come across on the phone. We already covered the price issue, and you know how fast you’re getting back to prospect, so let’s look at what happens when they call. Are you scaring them off by coming across as too demanding or difficult to work with? Are your qualification requirements too rigid for the market? What about your demeanor during calls? Try smiling while talking to people! Believe it or not, studies have shown people can easily tell if your smiling while talking to you on the phone. And you’re only smiling when you in a good mood – and no one wants to talk to someone in a bad mood! Also, don’t be short with people and rush them through a call. That’s another big turnoff.
It’s always important to understand what’s working and what’s not; knowing which tactics to highlight and which ones to change. This is crucial to the success of your campaign.
Spring brings plenty of opportunities, but they can easily slip through your grasp if you don’t properly execute. Review your strategy and compare it with these property marketing tips to get more activity and more conversion this season.