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The $750k cup of coffee

The $750k cup of coffee

I picked up a copy of the Dom Post property section recently and was surprised at how dated this form of advertising has become in just a few short years. Some of the images were so small that details were indistinguishable, appeared faded and often pixelated. This in comparison with the now crisp, clear images I am used to browsing from the convenience of my phone or PC. In the age of technology with information at our fingertips and high quality professional imagery, it is hard not to question the value this form of advertising adds to a marketing campaign.

It wasn’t long ago that it was common practice for real estate agencies to encourage, and in some cases incentivise, their salespeople to sell large print media advertisements. In the days when print media reigned supreme, it was a both a free and effective method of profiling both the company and the agent whilst legitimately promoting the property. But the days of print media as an advertising necessity, regardless of the property type and target market, are over. So why are agents still pushing ad spends into the thousands? For some specific target markets, it still forms an integral part of a comprehensive advertising campaign. For others, free agent profiling is the name of the game.

So, how can you as a vendor ensure you are getting the best bang for your advertising buck?


One of the key considerations when marketing a property for sale is the target market. Most properties will appeal to one specific target market over and above others. That is not to say other potential purchasers can’t/won’t view the property but consideration should be given to the marketing methods and advertising platforms which are most appealing to the group considered ‘highest and best use’.

First home buyers are very mobile and their preferred search method is online. They most commonly search TradeMe, and individual company sites for new listings. Many of these sites go one step further offering instant alerts for saved search criteria. This ensures that when a new property hits the market, it hits their inbox. For a target market who like to be in control of their media, waiting for the Saturday paper is just not a consideration.

Downsizers are also likely to use online sites, but will take the time to peruse the paper and real estate magazines as well. It is not uncommon that someone in this target may not have brought a house for twenty years when searching in the Saturday paper was the norm. So, for this target market, print advertising is still a viable medium.

War Stories

One way salespeople manage to sell expensive print media marketing is by using war stories. It goes something like this;

“you should always advertise in the paper as one time we had one buyer who enquired via the paper and paid $50,000 more than the next buyer” . Another classic pitch for the paper from the Real Estate 101 archives is that of the Saturday morning café goer browsing the property section and buying the property on impulse.’

Clause 9. 13,  ‘Professional conduct and client care’ of the Real Estate Agents’ ten commandments requires that a salesperson seeks to obtain the best value advertising for their clients.  So whilst the ‘war stories’ are great for creating fear of loss, take the time to understand what exactly you are buying before committing your life savings to costly, often unnecessary advertising spends.

The proof is in the pudding

This couple couldn’t have helped me illustrate the point any better. For those of you who can’t read the grey box the text says ‘click here to find out how’. I think their link is broken!


Wellington market

There has been a lot of coverage locally about the rise of property values across the wider region. The problem with this is that the media reports reflect changes which lag two to three months behind the market. While prices continue to be hold up well with many properties attracting multiple offers, numbers attending open homes are dropping off as stock levels subside and buyer fatigue takes its toll. By all reports it appears that interest rates will remain low with the only threat to borrowing likely to come from the reserve bank if they implement restrictions like the LVR. We will watch the spring market with interest.


Fun facts for May

With the RNZB production of the Wizard of OZ opening this week, we thought it would be fun to look at some Wizard of OZ facts

  • The Cowardly Lion costume weighed almost 50kgs and was made with real lion pelts
  • The Wicked Witch’s makeup was toxic, so actress Margaret Hamilton lived on a liquid diet to avoid accidental ingestion. Her face stayed green for weeks after shooting finished due to the copper-based ingredients
  • The Tin Man’s oil was really chocolate sauce. Real oil didn’t show up sufficiently on film.
  • The tornado in the film was created with a 10m long muslin stocking that was spun while dirt, dust, and wind blew against it. The Kansas farm was a miniature.
  • The now famous song “Over the Rainbow” was almost cut from the movie, because execs thought it made the movie too long

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