Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Listing of the Day - Milwaukee WI

In an effort to improve the impact of the marketing of listings, I randomly choose current listings around the country in a variety of price ranges and comment on their effectiveness. No current clients of mine are used, nor do I know any sellers or buyers or have any additional information about the property.

3002 N. Prospect Ave., Milwaukee WI 5 + 2 $259,000


This listing advertisement review could be summed up in 3 words - Not enough information.

It appears there are several selling points for this home, yet they are either not presented or not reinforced.

The description begins by pointing out this is a "3 story classic restored to its original style - exquisite character....". Yet, all we are shown is one, count 'em, one photo. A photo which shows a tree with no leaves in front, while it is angled so that one can't easily determine if this is the front or back of the home. We don't see an entrance, where the home is relation to the street, whether or not there is a driveway, garage, or a yard. Keep in mind this is a FIVE bedroom home. The third floor looks very small from this angle, more like an add-on, guest room, or attic. There is no way to get a feel for the "exquisite character" when all we have is one poor photo.

In addition, the description copy is not geared toward who could live there, important since this is a 5 bedroom home. I understand that you cannot gear an ad toward a specific category or group of potential buyers, but this copy has nothing to make a guess about.

For example, there is zero mention of the area this home is in. Upon my checking the map link (and assuming the Google map is accurate this time around), this home is very near the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee. That would cause me to speculate that a 5 bedroom home could be shared among students and/or be used as an income property. Putting in "1 block from UWM" would make that point obvious without actually saying it. If it is intended more for a large family, then the information about the home being restored to its original character has little to no bearing for a family looking for something affordable in this area.

Furthermore, the room dimensions below only include 4 bedrooms, and this is supposed to be a FIVE bedroom home. Worse yet, all 4 bedrooms which are shown have different dimensions, so we don't know if they left out a smaller or a larger bedroom.

Much of the description copy is shown with abbreviations. Not everyone knows automatically that "HWF" means hardwood floors. There is not even a period at the end of the last sentence, so we don't know if this ad was supposed to end there, or if copy was cut off. An advertisement seeking more than one-quarter million dollars from a buyer merits full sentences and a proper description.

This appears to be the listing agent merely copying the description from the MLS form which goes to other agents and slapped in any old photo, whose job it is to know the abbreviations.

Yet there is more. This ad is among those on this site showing the "original price" and "current price", which in this instance is the same amount. This tells a potential buyer (if still around to read it) that there is no price reduction (yet) for this home. Unless there has been a price reduction, this category should not be included. The advertiser should have the say. (If it is newspaper policy to always show this, then I would advertise new listings elsewhere to not scare away potential buyers.) To top it all off, there is not even a phone number to call the listing agent. (Maybe he knows nobody is going to bother based on the rest of this ad, but still.........)

Yet, this is what appears on the web site of the dominant newspaper in the marketplace.

If I was a potential buyer, I probably would not have kept looking after seeing that photo. If I had, I would have bailed after the description copy since it gives no idea about the area or hints about who should buy it.

If I was the seller, I would be furious that there are no additional photos and nowhere near enough information to entice a potential buyer. I would be upset that the agent I am trying to pay a commission to took what appears to be about 30 seconds to prepare this ad.

Including the few selling points helped raise my original grade just a bit.


Note: This commentary is uncompensated and for marketing purposes only and is no reflection on the featured property. Its accuracy is not guaranteed. Neither Dave Kohl nor First In Promotions shall be held responsible for any representations.

At this time, I have openings for more realty agent/office clients to critique current and brand new listings on an hourly basis. No current or past client listings are featured on this blog.Random listings are chosen around the country.

Your comments are most welcome!

No comments: