Real estate agents endorsing digital media! - the tide has turned

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Working in the realm of digital media as I have done for over 7 years now, I struggled long and hard to get agents to see the value of online advertising, it was a long and arduous road. Getting agent to embrace digital media and relinquish that decades old love affair with newspapers, that was the objective at Realestate.co.nz and at many property portal around the world.

In many countries the pendulum has firmly swung in favour of online advertising, the US being a prime example where it is rare to see any print media advertising for real estate. In Australia the majority of spend by agents is heading online and Europe is firmly in favour of online. However in other parts of the world the print media and particularly newspapers are still seen as the advertising medium of choice.

So imagine my surprise and delighted when the following video was brought to my attention by Business2 in Australia, the media hub of real estate and technology. The video they profiled on their site was made by a real estate company!.

The video by Philip Webb pulls no punches; stating that the primary function of real estate advertising in newspapers is for the brand profile of the agent or the real estate company, not the property. Buyers go online. Sellers check out the newspaper - after all that is where the agent said they were going to spend the vendors money advertising it!

In NZ it costs less than $700 to do a significant online campaign, a campaign that is working 24hrs a day for a month around the world to an audience of hundreds of thousands. That amount of money would not even buy a single page in a property magazine. A single page that becomes recycle trash within 24hrs and reaches people who have to go to an office to pick it up and sift through thousands of properties that are not sorted in the logical needs of buyers - location and price filtering!

Here's the video from Philip Webb.

Its a brave move by Philip Webb. It's guerrilla marketing. The video is not to be found on their website, clearly they want to kick up a storm and demonstrate a competitive distinction. I would judge that they are achieving this, they are certainly getting media coverage within the industry.

Maybe other smart real estate companies might take their head out of the sand and realise that they could differentiate themselves by endorsing online-only campaigns as 200Square does in NZ.