Traditional versus Internet buyers

Aren’t we at the point now where “internet advertising” is “traditional” advertising?

From Broker Agent News the other day:

92% of Internet buyers found their agent on a web site; 63% found them through an Internet search engine; 0% of Internet buyers found their agent through brochures, flyers, yard signs or mailers to their home (does this tell you to spend more on Internet marketing and less on print?);

You need to take most of the money you are spending on newspaper ads, brochures, glossy marketing pieces, etc., and invest it in your Online Marketing. Chances are good that you cannot possibly wisely spend all those dollars online; consider those savings as your bonus this year. It will be tough not seeing your comforting listings in the paper, but think of all the money you’ll be saving! (And as more fuel for that fire, consider this: Ms. Appleton-Young’s data also show that over 70% of people 65 and older read a daily newspaper, but only 35% of 24 year olds do. PRINT IS DEAD TO THIS GENERATION OF HOMEBUYERS!)

There is a place for print advertising, no doubt about it, but that place is shrinking every single day. For the reasons cited above, I tell my sellers from the beginning that I would rather not advertise in print. Ever. Those who regard print advertising as “traditional” may as well call themselves “antiquated.”

I have said it before; if I cannot measure the effectiveness of an advertising campaign, how useful is it?

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6 Comments

  1. Doug Quance February 21, 2007 at 10:14

    I told my sellers that as of Jan 1 – I would not use print advertising anymore.

    It had gotten to the point where there was NO return on the money for me.

    Perhaps it still works in a smaller market… but in a city like Atlanta, I can’t see it.

  2. Greg Swann February 21, 2007 at 11:20

    Hmm… Zero sign calls? As with the NAR’s dubious reports, I think the underlying numbers are suspect. Doesn’t mean they should be ignored, but a grain of salt everyday with your vitamins is not a bad idea.

  3. Jim Duncan February 21, 2007 at 13:37

    I concur regarding the sign calls – I would say that ~30-40% of leads come from sign calls. Either way, print is mostly irrelevant for most marketing, IMHO.

  4. Apella February 21, 2007 at 23:48

    Great Topic, I would like to state that I am from Southeast MI and have recently moved to Central VA to start setting up markets in the east coast states. I have found you to be advanced in your blog and topic for the area and have added you to my list of blogs to read on a regular basis.

    The truth is as read here – there really are two different markets one is set to grow the other resend. True proof is in the cost of postage and increases. Direct marketing is almost out of reach for mid size and small business compiled with the ink and/or printing cost. Internet marketing really is an economical marketing tool. With sales down in most parts of the country those that wish to remain in the business will need to be money smart and Internet marketing provides that to some degree.

    The NAR numbers may be correct or not, but I can tell you this, over exposure tends to be ignored over time by the human senses. There are a lot of signs out there in SE Michigan and NW Ohio and signs do not go to the consumer the same as Internet marketing does.

    The marketing tools vary based on the local population as well. In my case I did not move my operations to the area until the area had cable Internet broadband. If the market is conservative, rural or an older population then print is the tool to use, if younger or a metropolitan market then Internet will be more effective. The right tool for the right market was one of the topic I have attended at marketing seminars and your suggestion to mix up the budget is right on queue. Marketing is test, test, test and more testing and is always changing and so a business really needs to take into account cost savings.

    Further, people like the feel of something in their hands, from the littlest details and on up. Even if you have Internet marketing a part of your overall marketing plan, you will still want paper to some degree.

    I would like to close with once again agreeing with you in the area of tractability, while printed material are tractable, the Internet has a huge hand up on the task which data collection and time savings in analyzing in turn saves the small business money.

  5. native February 22, 2007 at 14:40

    If people “need” paper in their hands–they can print. Otherwise, save a tree!!

  6. Pingback: Real Central VA - Tracking the Charlottesville and Central VA real estate market and more » Signs, signs, everywhere there are signs