So You Still Advertise in the Newspaper

Oct 26, 2010

In many presentations I will ask the question “Is anyone out there still advertising in the paper?”After showing the overwhelming evidence that this is not the best place to advertise homes for sale, there are still some who are hanging on to this as a viable source. The good news is that the number is fewer than years past. However, I am perplexed at the percentage of advertising budgets still allocated to the paper.

At a recent conference, we were discussing this again with Real Estate company owners so I posted a quick question on Facebook for some live responses. This sparked a nice little discussion and I love the comments from professionals all across the country. So much so – I thought I would just post the discussion here (removing names).

One of my favorite quotes from below “look for other ways to give your sellers their marketing placebo” This was echoed at the conference when a successful broker who hasn’t advertised in the paper in years said “take the marketing pacifier out of their mouth”

So here was the post and the feedback. What are your thoughts?

“Having a “robust” discussion about newspaper advertising w/ broker owners. Still a lot of companies committing a large part of their budget to the paper. What would you tell them?’

Numbers don’t lie… take an objective look at the money out versus money in, then make your decision.

As Bob Dylan once said “Oh the times they are a changin'”

Don’t give money to people that write bad things about you!

Have you heard of an iPad? Let me show you something…

The lowest quality prospect comes from print media!

I’d ask them how they measure success of their print ads. Do they accept the anecdotal evidence from their sales offices? How much do they pay per acquisition? I guarantee they can make that metric drop like a rock if they diverted most of that budget to digital!

Measure to manage and look for other ways to give your sellers their marketing placebo. Sellers get excited when you tell them their listing will be in the newspaper because they know you’re spending money to market their home – not because they really think that will sell it. The trouble comes in that most sellers also know that there is little to no fee for you to put their listing in the MLS… so you MUST go beyond that, but don’t go for the low hanging fruit with newspapers

I think at this time in our economy it’s hard to say what works. 90% of people start shopping online, yet in some regions (yes) print pulled. Numbers don’t lie. Most of our budget is online.

Call me, we changed our marketing mix and our market share keeps increasing with rerouting dollars.

We sell more than almost any competitor in LV and we don’t advertise in the paper at all – online is where it is at!

As far as branding, I would show people how we were different by NOT being in the outdated print material. They could still use it in a presentation, but I would use it to show a buyer what not to do. Then take them online live and show them your presence on the web.

Let the stats do the talking….

Agree with Frank. Here’s how we do it: set up a dedicated URL for each channel including print. Then, track each channel against five indicators of quality: total website traffic, time on site, pages viewed, return visits, and opt-inconversion. Seeing the numbers in print will do more convincing in 5m than 5 hours of trying to convince someone verbally that print is a terrible ROI.

Newspapers are dying. (from a Executive Editor of National Magazine)

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