Marketing For Average vs Luxury Homes


Every Wollongong, Kiama and South Coast real estate agent I know would agree that amazing homes need great marketing campaigns. You would agree that the photos should be amazing, the video should capture the size of the home and showcase it's features and it should show the benefits of living in that particular area, whether it be the beaches, forests, or the lifestyle of the urban neighbourhood.

In an article about marketing a luxury ski resort Sotheby's International Realty agent David McHugh said:

“Affluent consumers today are focused not just on a great property, but on the lifestyle that the property will provide their family How do they see their family using the property? Will this property be a draw for their immediate and extended family to use for family gatherings?”


One of Australia's consistent top performers, Gavin Rubinstein does a great job of showcasing this luxury property in Sydney's Eastern Suburbs. I think you'll agree this video does a great job of showing both the location and the property:

 
 
 
 

Other than a great video a great floor plan would help as well, especially if the home is large or has a unique layout, and perhaps a unique marketing campaign incorporating a party at the open home, or something else that’s a little unique. Even making it a 3D floor plan to really give buyers a feel for the home is a great tool that could be used to make the listing stand out.


Given we are so close to amazing beaches here on the South Coast, drone and aerial photography would also be a must.

All of that’s great, and any Wollongong or Kiama real estate agent would be fully comfortable with that approach when selling a multimillion dollar listing. In fact they likely wouldn't consider selling it any other way.


But when it comes to the average home, shouldn’t they be given the best possible chance at a top sale price as well? Don't they deserve the same effort and attention?


We all know the commission for the selling agent is not as high, and the marketing budget won’t be as large, but a smart real estate agent will still know how to create an amazing real estate marketing campaign for an average home, and do it all on a budget.


What should a Kiama, Wollongong or South Coast real estate agent spend on photography and marketing?


Real estate marketing expert Laura Ure, says:

“If the home being sold is for $2,000,000 could easily have $20,000 go into marketing it.”


In other words, Laura suggests spending about 1% of the sale price on the marketing budget for that property. That’s a roughly third of the commission for an agent (yes I know, some agents charge WAY less than that because it's a competitive market), which is fine for a large listing, but it gets harder for agents selling homes in lower price brackets.


Jerry Rossi, author of Dog Eat Dog & Vice Versa: 9 Secrets to Put the Bite Into Your Marketing,suggests:

“A good rule of thumb for real estate practitioners is that marketing budgets should equal about 10 percent of their commission income …”

So if an agent is earning a 3% commission on the sale of a property, then that works out to be a marketing budget that’s 0.3% of the sale price. That sounds achievable even for homes at the bottom end of the market, so let’s see how that might work out with a few examples:


A Marketing Campaign For A $1,000,000 Property:

Assuming a marketing budget that is 0.3% of the sale price = $3000

That’s a healthy marketing budget, and with that an agent should be able to provide:

  • 10-20 high-quality photos

  • A video tour of the home and surrounding area

  • A floor plan

  • Brochures

  • Signboards

… and still have some change left over for an online ad campaign and more.


A Marketing Campaign For A $600,000 Property:

Working off the assumption that a marketing budget that is 0.3% of the sale price = $1800

That’s a tight marketing budget, but an agent should still be able to provide:

  • 6 high-quality photos

  • A short video tour of the home or a floor plan as a minimum

So although the marketing would not be as in depth and have as many options as a larger property, a good agent and an agent that believes in great marketing at all costs should still be able to deliver a marketing campaign that stands out as amongst the best in that particular price range.


A Marketing Campaign For A $250,000 Property:

This is a really low-priced home, and when I did a quick search of current homes for sale across the greater Wollongong area in that price range, there were very, very few homes around that price that were presenting immaculate images.

To show you what I mean, here’s a sample of homes I found in that price range. You’ll notice that most of the images were them taken by the real estate agent or homeowner themselves. However, the listing that I found in where the agents spend money on marketing features great images, and it really stands out as excellent value for a buyer in this price range:


So what could a Wollongong or Kiama agent that wants to stand out do?

Assuming a marketing budget that is 0.3% of the sale price = $750

That doesn’t leave much room at all, but an agent should still be able to provide:

  • 6-10 high-quality photos

Most agents don't even bother to spend that much on their lower end listings, but at the lower end of the market a high-quality marketing campaign is going to stand out far more than any other listing on the market, simply because no-one else is spending money advertising there. Think of a diamond in the dirt. You're going to notice it aren't you.


So when those buyers and investors are scrolling through their search results, looking at homes for sale in that sub-$400K range, a property with just few a few exceptional images is going to get their attention.

Conclusion:

Don’t neglect the how important a good marketing campaign is just because it’s average or low-cost. I'd even argue that these homes need MORE attention than the luxury properties. Sure, it’s easy to justify outlaying thousands of dollars on a million dollar listing, but it should be just as easy to justify spending a few hundred dollars on any listing at any price. Every home deserves to be shown at its best (and lets not forget your obligation to work in your vendors best interests) because the photos you use in a real estate marketing campaign impact upon the number of buyers you attract, it impacts upon the sale price, and it impacts on how buyers and sellers perceive you, the agent.

Unless you want to sell your homes, and yourself, short of their full potential then bring in a professional real estate photographer for every single listing you have. The numbers will work well for you if you do.