Have you ever played one of those hidden object games where everyday items are camoflauged into their environment, being hidden in plain sight? I love those games. The objects blend in so well, that you really have to concentrate hard and look closely – like finding a needle in a haystack. But, it takes work and is not quick, fast and easy. However, the more times you see the same puzzle, the easier it is to connect with it and remember where the items you previously found were located.
Classified listings are very much the same way. All of the ads blend together and look so similar, that often times it is hard to find that one listing that connects with us. Each listing is camoflauged in the text and continuity of all the other listings located there. I often times hear my clients frustration that their listings have not been successful the first or even the second time through. All of the important information has been included, price, location, etc. Why is it not working? Their listing is like that hidden object – camoflauged in it’s environment.
Text = boring, plain and unexciting. Black and white with no frills attached. I’m sure you’re familiar with the expression “A photo is worth 1,000 words”. It is human nature to connect more emotionally with a photo than with the text you read. Sure, there are ways to make the text more exciting. Buzz words, rewording facts/features to make them state a benefit. It all boils down to the fact that text is uninviting. Invisible per say. Unseen in the eyes of those looking for the needle in the haystack.
An article I just read from Manta stated:
“potential customers need to hear about you and what you have to offer up to 12 times before they are ready to do business with you. So keep marketing and use as many venues as possible (especially the free ones) to get your message in front of the right people as often as possible.”
People often ask me if I get much business from some of the sites I use to advertise and promote listings for my clients. I know that the listings are being seen, because many of the sites offer me statistics on the “views” of the ad. Does that mean that a specific site drove someone to do business with me? I don’t believe so. I feel that consistency, market penetration and being visible to those seeking housing is the key. Remember, your listing needs to see it up to 12 times before a house hunter will act. Whether this means during the first week, or by relisting it several times over and over, make sure you keep it in front of them.
If you are trying to place your own listings, try to keep in mind that the more venues you get it listed at, the more people will connect with you. Utilize the tools that some sites offer like “renewing” or “refreshing” the ad, placing it back at the top and in front of the house hunter as often as each site will allow. The continuous visibility will touch those that are searching for the hidden object – your rental. I have always encouraged my clients to use photos. Make sure that you do as well. Try to emotionally engage each house hunter to want to live in the rental you have available. There are many tips for taking engaging photos, but that is for another day…
What do you find the most difficult about preparing a rental listing? Is it the wording of the ad, or what items to include? Let me know some of the challenges you have had in the past.
The photos in today’s blog are from an article found here: http://www.buzzfeed.com/expresident/21-things-that-cannot-be-unseen
Lori Hartjoy is the owner of Blue Mountain Rentals, established in 2011. As well as being a devoted mother of 3 toddlers, she provides over 20 years of clerical experience to her clients. Her background includes processing employment, tenant screening, background checks and working as a property manager and payroll clerk for a major telecommunications corporation.
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