Real Estate Broker/Owner with Lake And Town Realty 209235



 = VERY BAD, VERY VERY BAD (Seinfeld episode) that I have your attention. I am writing this blog to help save you money when thinking about using your marketing dollars to advertise.

Are we not continually searching for the magic solution to help deliver more leads in a cost effective manner? Well, I have been looking for over 10 years and I have tried them all out. Top Producer, Google Ads, Local Ads, etc..and of course Trulia. Now, I know that we may have a few of you out there who may doing well and even have had success with your ad. However, let me quickly explain.

Since Google has been kind of slow recently, my partner and I decided to try something new. We were constantly being "bombarded" with Zillow and Trulia to buy zip code areas. I was always against it but finally gave in to try it.  A great zip code came open and we jumped on it.

We went in head first and started to create a profile, you know the picture, adding our "about us" page, and of course all of our past sales. We even got a few great reviews from past clients. So here we are 5 star ratings, great zip code area, nice profile and ZERO leads in over 7 weeks. Oh sorry, we did get a couple of rental leads from my partners listings and someone who wanted info on a trailer priced at $49,000. Mind you we are in a zip code of mainly 400k-6million waterfront homes.

So I called and spoke to our representative (nice guy) and said, "are we doing something wrong?" He repsonded with "let me check your account". After a few minutes his response was "Nope everything looks good".  So we talked for a while and he agreed that we should maybe try another zip code area where we would get a higher % of the market. I said "great let's do it." We paid up front for the 6 months and we should have a balance left." The representative said, "oh no you can't do that unless you sign for another 6 months".  

REALLY!! Now I know that TRULIA and ActiveRain are now one, but do not want this to be a reflection on ActiveRain. I have reached Ambassador Status so I do not want to lose that.

I know I have gotten a little lengthy and do apologize, but wouldn't you think TRULIA would want to see their clients be successful to keep the ongoing business? If they believe in their product and think that changing zips would make a difference and with the money in their pockets from being paid up front why not just do it?! Well, needless to say after a few more emails and no repsonse from them, we did not want to continue our contract based on the previous 7 weeks.

Anyway, I have vented enough and hope you do some serious research into TRULIA ads before signing anything. If I were to put that paid up front money in GOOGLE ADS I would have gotten 50-60 leads already based on what I averaged over the past 10 years. 

Thanks for reading,


Comments (8)

Mark Loewenberg
KW of the Palm Beaches - Palm Beach Gardens, FL
KW 561-214-0370

good to know about your experience.. am delving into this for the first time 

Oct 27, 2014 11:11 AM
Michael J. Perry
KW Elite - Lancaster, PA
Lancaster, PA Relo Specialist

I had similar results with the big 2 ( Z  &  T )  !!!!!!

Oct 27, 2014 11:19 AM
Patricia Kennedy
RLAH Real Estate - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital

Mike, back in the day when I got into the business, we learned to prospect.  My suggestion?  Do a "By Referral Only' program.  Joe Stumpf is awesome when it comes to training people to work their current and past clients.  And he focuses on what a quality real estate practice, one where your clients will want to refer you to the people they care about, actually looks like.  And it costs a whole lot less than paying any lead referrer every month.

Oct 27, 2014 11:42 AM
Aaron Poling
Long & Foster - Martinsburg, WV
Working to get YOU the BEST Deal!

That is good to know. I have considered purchasing zip codes myself, but to know that they weren't willing to work with you, after you paid up front. That really turns me off to the idea.

Oct 27, 2014 12:03 PM
Winston Heverly
Winston Realty, Inc. - Atlantis, FL

I have used Zillow and found it to be extremely successful. There are many reasons why agents are not successful in using this internet tool. That being said I also found in my own expereince is prices above 300-400k attract buyers that don't seem to work or stick with me or attracted in part to this type of lead generation. This may explain why you either did not get many leads or they just didn't panout. Also note the leads have considerable dropped over the last 15-18 months as prices rose and investors have stopped buying.

Good luck in search of the magic mode of advertising. Perhaps try Zillow with a lesser dmographic of a price range if one exists in your area.

Oct 27, 2014 02:53 PM
Greg Nino
RE/MAX Compass, formerly RE/MAX WHP - Houston, TX
Houston, Texas

This is really hard to believe. I signed up with Zillow and Trulia and was able to pay my own house off, pay cash for my car and take the family on an all expense paid vacation..... said no agent ever.


You got hosed. Sorry, man. Market Leader used to be the bombdigitty. 

Oct 29, 2014 08:34 AM
Alan May
Jameson Sotheby's International Realty - Evanston, IL
A moving experience!

Personally, I like it when they call me... they leave a message saying that they've had a zip code open up in my neighbourhood, and to call if I'm interested in signing up (the way they put it, of course, is "if I'm interested in increasing my business").

When I don't call them back, they call back and leave the same messages, now a bit indignant, saying "you didn't call me back!?".

D'uh.... that's 'cause I'm not interested!!

Oct 30, 2014 07:25 AM
Mike Carpino
Lake And Town Realty - Cornelius, NC
Broker/Owner-Lake Norman Waterfront Specialist


Oct 31, 2014 05:16 AM

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