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New Activerain.com Survey Indicates That Top Agents Spend 10 Times More On Marketing

November 17th, 2011

Yesterday Scott Hargis sent me a link to a new activerain.com survey that shows what top agents do that is different than not so successful agents.

This survey has a lot of good data that will give you insights into the behavior of top agents and what makes them top agents. There are a couple of results that this survey is particularly useful for real estate photographers and confirms what I’ve been preaching here for some time:

  1. Top agents spend more on marketing: the survey shows that in fact they spend about 10 times more on marketing. As the survey says, “rich real estate agents spend more in 2 weeks than poor agents spend all year”.
  2. Top agents use YouTube significantly more (22%) that less successful agents: Although the survey doesn’t say this directly you can infer that this means top agents are paying for professional video because very few agents do their own video.
The bottom line for real estate photographers is very clear:
  1. Target the upper-end agents because they are the ones that are willing to spend the marketing money on professional photography.
  2. Target the upper-end agents for video because they understand the benefits.
  3. Make YouTube a part of your video marketing product. Upper-end agents understand the benefits.
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19 Responses to “New Activerain.com Survey Indicates That Top Agents Spend 10 Times More On Marketing”

  • This ActiveRain blog was one of the more commented blogs is a long time. It really hit home for many with 257 comments so far. But keep in mind, successful agents spend money to promote themselves as much as promote and sell their listing. So yes, one agent might spend thousands on a website and pay for a custom IDX feed, and also have an expansive email distribution network, and also pay hundreds on SEO a month, but much of it is selling themselves to get the listings and get the buyers to call.

    But these agents are also successful because they do spend money on marketing and selling their listings. They don’t often compromise on poor photographs because it does matter. So if you see their names over and over again online, in print, in the streams of information of real estate, it’s likely they will pay more for quality pictures and video. It’s a win win and these agents are not getting off this mouse treadmill anytime soon. Online presence is everything in real estate and pictures are one of most important ingredients in selling real estate.

  • I absolutely believe this is true. I sometimes feel like I live in a strange little bubble…. my clients are ALL (no exceptions) very, very successful right now. Most are having an extremely good year, and many are having the best year they’ve ever had in years and years of selling real estate. Just yesterday I did a shoot for a good client of mine who told me she is having her best year in 12 years this year. Personally, I’m having a very good recession as well – I couldn’t be any busier. So in my little world, all is good with the economy – couldn’t be better!

    Yet, I talk with most Realtors who I do not work with, and it’s doom and gloom. Business is horrible. Nobody is buying anything. Nobody can sell anything. It’s just horrible….. The market is the worst in years… All negative, all the time!

    Say what? Not in my world! There are many Realtors doing VERY well right now, and those are the ones you need to target for all of the reasons above.

    I like to think all my successful clients are successful because they work with me (and I think that’s true to some degree), but I also KNOW that the successful agents are ATTRACTED to what I do because they understand marketing, they understand business, and they’re absolutely willing to spend money to make money.

    They “get it”.

  • Nobody reads any more. Everybody wants to be entertained. Still photography as we know it is dead. It just hasn’t been buried yet.

  • Video wins guys. Just like Adobe capitulated on Flash

  • Photography is real estate’s greatest lie. Deal with it.

  • Brett, I don’t disagree about video winning but great still photography will always have a place in excellent marketing. It just cannot be the only thing. Sophisticated customers demand more and will find somebody else who will give it to them.

  • I can’t tell what is more ignorant, agents who won’t pay for marketing or videographers who won’t admit to themselves the importance of photography.

  • Brett, for someone who has a lot of talent, your comments are disappointing

  • Some really disappointing comments on here. It’s amazing how awesome some people’s work is and then they begin to speak and it doesn’t look as good anymore.

  • Once again Brett chimes in to ruin a good blog discussion.

    Maybe Larry should consider promoting one of the other talented videographers (allan, malia, david ross and so many others) all the time…..someone who actually CONTRIBUTES positively to the site.

  • I totally disagree about real estate photography being dead. For the last 3 years I have invested in a professional photographer taking photos of my listings. It has made all the difference in my business . I also believe in the power of YouTube and use it regularly but my successful career as an agent would be greatly diminished if it weren’t for top notch photos on the internet. It has eliminated my need to do open houses because the listings are showcased and generate calls !

  • “Nobody reads any more. Everybody wants to be entertained. Still photography as we know it is dead. It just hasn’t been buried yet.” —– not sure about you Brett, but I look at photos, not read them.

    “Video wins guys. Just like Adobe capitulated on Flash” ——— how does this statement even make sense? Flash is a platform to play video (mp4), the 2 were never in competition….

    “Photography is real estate’s greatest lie. Deal with it.” ——– this could be the dumbest statement i have ever heard, maybe you could elaborate and enlighten us?

  • I don’t think photography will ever go away – it will always be important in marketing real estate. For most (especially on the MLS) video is the LAST thing a buyer looks at, AFTER they view the description and look at the photos, which one can do at your own pace. If they like what they read and what they see THEN they take the time to look at the video. Good photography is what is needed as the “hook” to get them to watch the video, which is essentially their “first showing”. To say that still photography is dead is absurd. I was also disappointed in the comments above – I actually thought it was spam at first!

  • So removing all shadows, replacing all skies and changing the grass ain’t coloring reality. Wide angle lens to make rooms look bigger. Of course what we do is real estate’s biggest lie. What? No rain. No shadows. No contrast? Advertising and marketing is the art of making things look unreal. I just believe the consumer needs real. Photography as an art will never go away. As a medium for marketing properties in a digital world…tell that to the fax machine. CJ. Weren’t you on West Wing?

  • @brett
    Stick to reading photos bud……

    Weren’t you in dumb and dumber?

  • It’s like books or radio that were going to disappear with the invention of the TV.

  • Photographic images, still and moving, were being used to idealize for marketing purposes before digital photography and Photoshop, and all Brett is doing is hyping himself. His assertions are unsupported and self-serving.

  • David. Close! But not complete. But you did get me. And it’s awesome to be called to question by a real person and not a troll. Which, I have to admit, was my real purpose in posting such outrageous claims. I respect photography and cinematography and art. I’m just over the nameless trolls who enter into discussions behind ghost names on this site. By all means have a go. But can we see who you are? I bet CJ will never reveal who he/she is because he/she is a competitor. I love the art guys. I just hate the pretenders who frequent this site without ever showing who they are. Dumber and dumber? I had a great shoot on the Epic today. I must be a real moron to have built a business that can sustain that.

  • Oh, Troll baiting, huh? Have at it then.

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