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Craig Pontey’s Blog – You can’t sell a secret

By Craig Pontey

You Can’t Sell a Secret!

March 14, 2014 by Craig Pontey

It doesn’t take any leap of faith to understand that Sydney’s real estate market continues to run at record levels of activity, there is obvious pent up demand and new supply remains at record lows. It is also important to keep in mind that while the East is an established market that the lack of new supply also has an impact here.

As we continue to see strong sales activity, and press headlines around trophy prices, there still remains the indefatigable question about what is the best way to market property? It’s a question I think about everyday and it’s a question I am asked about at least several times a day, and it still remains as important as ever.

But you might be inclined to suggest that in the current market the answer is simple. Simple because there is sometimes the view that the answer is; that properties now need very little advertising or marketing, demand is so strong – however while we have a ‘demand-lead’ market how a property is taken to market is still of great consequence and will impact the final results.

Sold Prior To Auction!

My first comment on this topic is that markets are always evolving and while experience will always give us a benchmark, conditions change. Without stating the obvious properties can be taken to market via private treaty, public or invitation auction, expressions of interest, tender, off-market and by ROI or registration of interest being the main options. All valid and tried options, but still all requiring the support of a marketing effort, and while some marketing is highly visible, other options less so.

I also think that it’s a good idea to remind ourselves that marketing is all about exposure, all about finding that particular individual who will pay the highest and best price for a particular property, on terms that are acceptable to both the buyer and vendor. So as the title of this post goes; ‘You Can’t Sell A Secret’.

Auctions are very popular now, the word means ‘I increase’ and auctions date back to at least 500BC so its not a new idea, and when you see a flyer in your letter box with the headline copy reading ‘Sold Prior To Auction!’ that is really only a small part of the story. But that result is a good one and clearly shows that the needs of the buyer and seller were achieved, but not by accident and not without marketing, and I have to suggest a lot of work on the part of the sales team involved.

When you see this type of result keep in mind that it also points to the fact that the marketing agent was fully engaged and totally in contact with local values and conditions. Knowing where the buyers are and having the resources to reach those buyers, via a (reliable) data-base or an email campaign and not forgetting a good old fashioned sign will have been used. Sold prior also usually involves a good volume of open inspection to give the property exposure to potential buyers.

This Property Will Not Be Advertised!

If you have ever received an email or eDM with this sort of heading, what is your immediate reaction? The idea is to create a market sense of urgency, but saying it is not being advertised is not really accurate, after all the email you are reading is advertising. It just not a press advert or an on-line listing, but it is advertising and if used well it can be very impacting.

The creation of an exclusive message, just ‘to you’ is now more a part of the marketing environment and in today’s real estate market is having an impact. You can also serve this sort of message at any time to people across the world. There is even now a technology called ‘Chasing’ – very briefly it works by tracking a customer on-line, and when they pass your business, agency office, open house etc they can receive a message, without asking for it!

Now while we might not yet be at the point of ‘Chasing’ our clients on a Smartphone, this example shows how the role of advertising is rapidly changing. We should also not forget the role that public relations can play because it can be a whisper in the press that might just find a buyer who was not even active in the market.

However no matter what forms of marketing used my role still remains very much to have an assured market connection that gives me the confidence to recommend what sort of marketing will best suit every client.

Auction, private treaty or off-market, Smartphone or sign all of the new and tried and true options need to be considered and understood, it’s the best way to keep up with evolving markets.

Click here to view Craig’s Blog.

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