Monday, January 4, 2010

Listing of the Day - Riverside CA

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.

2895 Donovan Court Riverside, CA 4 + 2 $284,900

The first problem with this listing advertisement is not completely the fault of the agent (advertiser). Upon finding this advertisement on New Year's weekend, the top fact to the right of the listing price was that this home has been listed for 180 days. Ouch. On one hand, this is not the advertiser's fault, given that every listing advertised via this source provides the number of days each specific listing has been on the market.

While such information helps the consumer, it often hurts the listing agent (advertiser). Yet, I say "not completely" the advertiser's fault. If I were the advertiser at this source I would pull any ads on the market for more than 35 days maximum. After 6 months on the market, showing that amount of time does the property and the advertiser more of a disservice. A potential buyer knows he or she can wait for more price reduction and feels no sense of urgency to follow up. I have seen too many instances over the years where realty agents and offices put up with policies by advertising sources instead of dropping out and forcing change. But that is a separate matter.

Even though the seven photo spread for this advertisement features mostly interior photos, this photo spread does not do the job the way it should. The primary exterior photo is too far back. I understand showing the line of palm trees, but the photo leaves too much sky and street and not enough detail of the house itself. The second photo is either of the side or the rear of the home, but the angle shows more of neighboring properties and takes away from the focus being on this home.

Most of the photos have a July date clearly visible at the lower right, serving as another reminder of how many months this home has been listed. Even worse are the angles of a few of them. One shot of the den has a lamp in the way, while the photo of the office or library shows two computers and accessories with wires dangling all over the place. (Obviously, these computers do not come with the house but make the sellers appear sloppy.)

The description copy consists of numerous abbreviations, although I will say that in this instance the abbreviations are easy to understand. Yet, even as the primary exterior photo shows an attached garage, we are not told for sure it is a 2-car garage until further down on the page, likely after a potential buyer would have moved on to the next listing. Instead, the description copy wraps up commenting about the "Motivated Seller". I wonder what has kept them motivated for 6 months.

Wrapping it all up at the bottom is the name and office of the listing agent, but without any direct contact information. It appears that a potential buyer needs to contact a service of some sort and there is also space for a login. This is a problem because I got to this advertisement through the biggest local newspaper web site. Thus, I know nothing about any "service" or login.

Sorry, but if I'm the listing agent, I wouldn't put up with an advertisement showing how very long this listing has been on the market, while not showing direct contact information. Even if it's not the agent's fault.


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!

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