RE Marketing: Avoiding The Middle

Do you play it safe when it comes to real estate marketing, or do you take things all the way and deliver an exceptional campaign?

In this video marketing guru Gary Vaynerchuk gives his thoughts on marketing generally and I’d encourage you to take a look:

(Just be aware of the strong language that Gary uses, so you may not want to watch this with children.)

Gary said some key things here, and I want to highlight some of them:

“One of the things I’m obsessed with is extremes. If I started an event business, if I was like in the blow-up castle business to rent to bar mitzvahs and birthdays, what I would do tomorrow is go to China and make the most extreme castle of all time. Like a 900 foot castle! Because what’s happening in our society right now is it’s minimalism and it’s extremism.”

That makes a lot of sense. It’s the extreme marketing campaigns on social media that become viral, not the bland ones. The TV ads that get picked up and shared on social media with views in the millions are either completely out there in terms of crazy, or they have super high production values or an incredibly positive message.

Gary continues on to say:

“It’s the club dynamic. Why do clubs right now have, when you order the champagne, the sparklers come out? People want attention. They’re not buying the champagne, they’re buying the attention.

… Don’t live in the middle. The world is getting pulled that way because of the internet. The middle is bad.”

So you don’t want to live in the middle because that doesn’t get attention. When it comes to marketing, you want to think either absolutely crazy or very minimally.

Why do it this way?

Because of the attention that it brings to the marketing campaign and to the agent or agency.

In real estate marketing you may not have sparklers in your champagne (although if you’re wanting something extra special for your next open home then that’s definitely going to do it!), but if you want to stay away from the middle ground then you will bring something to the marketing that gets attention.

A lot of real estate marketing these days is very much in the middle, and that middle ground will be different in different places. In some areas the middle ground in real estate marketing is a real estate agent taking really terrible photos with their phone. In other parts of the world that kind of marketing would be at the extreme end (but not the good end), and so in those areas the middle ground is nice photos with a neatly drawn floor plan.

To identify the middle ground in your market, look through the top 10 or 20 property listings that come up in your local real estate search or MLS. Then, look at what the majority of real estate agents are doing with their campaigns.

Once you’ve identified the middle ground, you can decide if you want to do ordinary or if you want to go to the extremes. There’s no right or wrong answer here as it’s all up to you, but if you were to ask Gary Vaynerchuk what he’d recommend, he’d say:

Don’t live in the middle ground alongside the majority of local real estate listings.

In order to get the attention of as many buyers and sellers as possible in your market, consider taking things to extremes.

So, what could extreme real estate marketing look like?

This is liable to depend somewhat on the market you are in, but at a minimum, it’s going to be above-average photography and an amazing video.

If shaky real estate agent videos are the middle ground for you, then hire a videographer that can create a cinematic video with strong visual elements, and a perfectly selected musical base.

Would this work for every home?

It’s essential to invest heavily in marketing for the luxury end of the property market where competition for that small pool of buyers is high. As one luxury real estate agent in this news piece for Channel 5 in Nashville put it:

“With the luxury home market, the caliber of photography and photographers you use is much, much better. We’re not trying to find 5 buyers who want this property, we’re trying to find the one buyer who wants this property.”

But what about that mid-tier real estate market?

I think there’s definitely a place for extreme real estate marketing at that price point.

However, it may not be right for every listing so here are three questions to help you decide if this will work for you or not:

  • If you are a real estate agent, would 10% of your commission adequately cover the costs for extreme photography and video marketing? You should expect to be paying at least $1000 to $2000 for that, otherwise, it’s not extreme enough.
  • Could you or the homeowners stage the home to maximize the benefits of a professional visual marketing campaign?
  • As a real estate agent, are you looking to attract more luxury listings?

If you answered ‘yes’ to each of those three questions then it would be well worth considering an extreme marketing campaign for the right listing.

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