I know in my heart that the real estate business will always be a combination of solid marketing efforts AND a one-on-one , relationship business. It will never to get the point where the marketing and sales geeks like myself take it over 100% by dazzling consumers with great, emotionally compelling advertising, creating wonderfully engaging website functionality, posting witty blogs (not!), or by providing more housing data than even NASA could possibly ever analyze…
Nope, I have seen the light and that light was shone on me by Jason McBride from Verizon.
You see, I’m a Comcast household. And Fios wants in because they know the key to their corporate success in wrestling my Triple Play away from the cable guy. So they get it. They know I’ve sat through a whole season of American Idol watching the ads where the Fios guy constantly outsmarts the lazy cable guy to the point where someone needed to throw a flag for unnecessary roughness. I’ve seen why Verizon has a great cell plan and their brand name has been tattooed onto my brain…they took on AT&T and absolutely crushed them in the public forum…even though I still like Luke Wilson (Old School was a great movie). But at the end of the day, I was leaning toward Verizon, but not quite there.
Then came the fateful knock on the door just last night. Jason was standing there and he wanted us to switch to Fios. Because our dog would tear him apart, we had this conversation on my stoop (that’s a front porch for non East coasters). He patiently explained the available Fios promotion, why it made sense for us money wise, gave us a nicely done brochure (yeah, marketing!), and walked us through the install process. He answered all our questions outside on a sticky 90 degree night. We offered him water, and he accepted. He even looked like the actor on the Fios commercial.
We just might now go with Fios. The commercials really helped set the stage and got us interested, and clearly, Verizon’s branding effort worked because it gave me the confidence to talk to him. But we weren’t ready to make any commitment until some guy who was working really hard and made an effort to come to my home stopped by to make the case in person, one on one, and do it in a way that was genuine and sincere.
Clearly, a marketing effort can inspire trust. But in our business that is not enough, It’s the way our 100,000 agents do it everyday with their clients and potential clients that completes the circle. My favorite photo that we use for advertising is one where the agent is sitting at the dining room table explaining the real estate process to a couple. Because through my best intentions to sway you with great marketing, I can really only get you to seriously consider Coldwell Banker® as your real estate agency. But it really comes down to the dining room tables across North America and the relationships developed there with you and one of our great agents when the true commitment and partnership begins.
There’s just too much at stake financially and emotionally to have it any other way…did I mention I love Old School???