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Demise of Newspapers Creates Opportunity for Real Estate Photographers

November 7th, 2007

According to an article in yesterday’s New York Times, “THE circulation declines of American newspapers continued over the spring and summer, as sales across the industry fell almost 3 percent compared with the year before, according to figures released yesterday.”

I believe the falling importance of newspapers is another trend that is contributing to the increasing importance of real estate photography. As readers move to a more photo friendly medium with less limited space for photos in ads the opportunity and demand for great advertising photography increases.

One situation I experience regularly that demonstrates the comparative effectiveness of newspaper and web advertising is getting a tenant for our rental in Snoqualmie, WA. On craigslist.org we spend nothing to get a tenant within days; always within a week. In the Seattle Times it costs several hundred dollars, a weeks lead-time and we frequently don’t have a tenant after several weeks. The Craigslist phenomena is creating a financial disaster for newspapers. See Danny Meadows-Klue’s article in the Guardian from two years ago.

Not only do we get a tenant quickly with craigslist but the tenant usually calls to reserve the rental over the phone without asking to see the home because after seeing my full screen 360vr tour they feel they can make their decision. I think this kind of thing is happening all over the real estate industry daily but it’s more difficult to show that photography is the key factor in attracting buyers because you can’t re-sell the same home without photography to see the effect. With our rental we have been “selling” the same product over and over for the last 8 years and have been able easily see the effectiveness of the two advertising mediums. Needless to say we abandoned newspapers many years ago.

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3 Responses to “Demise of Newspapers Creates Opportunity for Real Estate Photographers”

  • […] Demise of Newspapers Creates Opportunity for <b>Real Estate</b> Photographers […]

  • Larry,

    I think your assessment of the relevance of newspapers is accurate. Craig’s List has made classified ads in newspapers an unimportant tool for the sale of almost anything. Craig’s List may change a lot of things before someone comes up with a better idea.

    Real Estate agents are at risk of suffering a similar fate if they don’t find a way to adapt to the changing markets. Most of the Realtors that I deal with are trying to find ways to mesh what they have always done with what needs to be done with internet oriented marketing, and most of them are making little or no progress. The Real Estate industry is in desperate need of some creative thinking.

    I think commercial photography has a very bright future.

  • I have done a couple of shoots for Landlords seeking good photos for their rentals. In both cases, it was a house they were trying to rent. With the money they save on newspaper advertising they can easily put towards professional photography. Rentals are also a market to be tapped for re photographers.

    It’s incredible what a phenom Craigslist has become. Costing newspapers dearly.

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