In a nutshell everything I ever wanted to know about marketing I learned from what was once the local TelCo here in Dayton, The Berry Company. In fact their training program has been duplicated by other fortune 500 companies right here in the Dayton area. The Berry Company sold Yellow Page advertising for local telephone companies throughout the United States, I worked for them in the mid '80s as an Account Executive. Now they are owned by Bell South. What I learned from the Berry Company is this: there is a cycle in advertising based upon two different kinds of advertising which either make or break your marketing success. If one break in the chain is evident or one side stronger than the other ( or the ying doesn't yang ) it simply will not be effective.
The first type of advertising is one many of us are quite familiar, it's called creative advertising. Creative advertising is what we're bombarded with day in and day out, it's Billboards, television commercials, e-mails, pop-ups, magazine ads and those annoying inserts, product placement in movies, radio advertising, jingles, catch phrases, slogans, logos, t-shirts, ball caps ad infinitum, it's splashed accross the backstop at Jacobs Field where my beloved Cleveland Indians reside. It's everwhere and it's enough to make you sick. However it's role is to make you the consumer feel confident in choosing such companies when you are ready to buy, which takes me to the second form of advertising, directional.
The second form of advertising is known as directional advertising. This is where the consumer goes when they are ready to buy, and if your name isn't one that conjurs up trust and familiarity they will choose the one that does. Many studies have been done and millions (probably billions) have been spent on finding out why people choose one company over another without knowing either, in fact some communications majors have based their disertation on it. Typically this was where the Yellow Pages came into play but in the Real Estate market of 2007 NOT ANY MORE! That's right, today over 89% of all consumers go to the internet when they are ready to buy, and according to the NAR (National Association of Realtors) 29% actually found their home on the internet. So the internet is the new Yellow Pages and it's quickly making print advertising pale when it comes to results. Prodigious results.
The key is this whether you're a consumer or a Real Estate agent, name branding is important. When was the last time someone not from the Dayton Area said to another person not from Dayton Ohio, hey, I'm relocating to the Dayton area, I think I'll call Irongate Realtors. WHO?! But they will call Coldwell Banker, or REMAX etc... because a name they know - and yes trust. Branding is important and sure folks know who Irongate is here locally but I think you get my point. It's part of the reason I hung my shingle here at Coldwell Banker Heritage Realtors.
So what's key to look for when interviewing an agent to sell your house is how well their marketing plan fits this proven success mold. Ours fits it to a tee and then some. One example of it is our Buyers Guide which is in both print and on the internet. How do you advertise this - how do you utilize these two thing to make them really work? You use creative advertising such as billboards, radio, tv and the like directing the consumer on where to go when they want to look at homes. Check out our Buyers Guide in shopping stores or on the web! Interestingly enough our print version actually refers clients to the Buyers Guide on the web! That's just one area but a fine example of how the advertising cycle works in successful marketing! In fact our National advertising does exactly the same - via television "go to ColdwellBanker.com to find an agent or find a home.