Photo courtesy of mbusa
How you are perceived by potential clients as a personal or company brand is a major factor in the decision making process of hiring you as a luxury real estate marketing professional. In Part 1 of this blog series, we showed the seven most important factors that car buyers consider when choosing a new car. We explained that Mercedes Benz has regained its dominance over other all other luxury cars in the battle of perception.
Here are some examples of how the same brand perception categories referred to in Part 2 might apply to the decision making process (the factor(s) that potential clients values most) when selecting an agent to represent them in buying or selling a luxury home. You can win your own battle of perception by positioning yourself or your company as the leader in at least one of these categories:
1. SAFETY: Although the concept of Safety applies to protection from physical harm when considering the purchase of a car, for some there is a perceived Safety in numbers when it comes to selecting a service provider. Some homeowners prefer to list their home with the biggest firm because the perception of more agents means more exposure to more potential buyers. Other home sellers feel more secure with the idea of listing their home with a big team within a company vs. a single agent.
Home sellers with an entrepreneurial bent might be more likely to choose a single agent vs. a team or a boutique firm vs. a large brand. To them Quality is more important than quantity. Quality time and attention is more important than getting lost in the shuffle of a large firm or dealing with an underling vs. the team leader. There may be more risk involved in selecting an agent based on this factor, but entrepreneurial thinkers are usually less risk averse.
3. VALUE: Some people decide who to hire based solely on Value, meaning the lowest commission rate. These people consider most top agents to be equal to the task. They do not care as much about Safety or Quality in this context. If you have the bent for this approach, become the value leader and dominate this category!
4. PERFORMANCE: In luxury real estate, Performance might refer to your track record. We recently heard a story from a successful agent whose website was found first via a Google search by a foreign buyer ready, able and willing to spend over $3M on a home. This person had searched the MLS on the agent’s site on a Thursday night and identified five homes that he wanted to see when he came in town that Saturday. The agent was told by the buyer that he checked out the Gallery of Sold Homes on the agent’s site which included several $3M+ homes. That was enough to convince the buyer to pick up the phone and request the showing appointment. For some Performance is a key decision making factor. If you have a strong track record by all means, flaunt it!
5 & 6. ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY/GREEN & DESIGN/STYLE: Agents with a passion for all things Green or those who have a flair for Design can run circles around other agents once potential clients learn that you speak their language and share their values.
7. TECHNOLOGY/INNOVATOIN: If you have a penchant for Technology, by all means jump all over this category and dominate it in the minds of potential clients. If you use Technology or demonstrate Innovation better than anyone else in your marketplace you have a shot at “owning” this category. Those who consider these factors to be their priority value will hire you over others who are a lesser match to their values.
If you can demonstrate that you or your company stand for one of these brand perception categories you will have a clear shot at gaining significant market share. If you can accomplish this in more than one category like Mercedes Benz has done with Qualtiy, Design/Style and Technology/Innovation you too can win the battle of brand perception, a battle that takes place expressly in the minds of your target market.
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