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The key mistake some agents make with their listings

By geoff-baldwin
25 August 2016 | 10 minute read
Geoff Baldwin

In recent years, many agents have fallen into the trap of trying to sell properties via their online marketing. However, this is a huge mistake.

The biggest driver in the buying decision is the same as that in any new love affair: emotion.

For a relationship to be successful usually requires a live meeting, and the same can be said about buyers becoming emotionally attached to property. It is hard to fall in love if there is never a live meeting!


Images and information can be a double-edged sword in property marketing. In the early stages of my career I was offered some valuable advice: ‘The less you say as an agent, the less chance you have of saying the wrong thing.’ I believe this same advice should be applied to advertising properties.

It is rarely the case that any more than a dozen genuinely high-quality images can be produced about one listing. There is a good chance, however, that the more images placed online, the more chance potential sellers will see something they don't like – not something that is necessarily a fault with the property, but something that doesn't appeal to them. In other words, they may encounter an inquiry killer.

Agents need to remember that advertising isn't designed to ‘sell’ a property, it’s designed to encourage inquiry and viewings.

By all means, provide enough information to attract inquiry and viewings, but remember that curiosity is still a key to attracting buyers, and attracting buyers is what we get paid for as agents.

Telling (or showing) the whole story online can often defeat that purpose as potential buyers make their minds up without even making a call or sending an email. Of the thousands of sales I have been involved with directly over the past 30 years, there have been so many where the buyer has fallen in love with and purchased a property that was nothing like they initially described as seeking.

The secret is to just tell people enough to get them to the property so that a love affair can start in real life. After all, online dating often proves to end in disappointment because the parties oversell the product.




Since kicking off his real estate career in 1987, Geoff Baldwin has achieved success at the highest level in sales, management, multi-office ownership and as a group CEO. He is a licensed agent, auctioneer, respected trainer and a widely published and quoted industry spokesperson. Geoff is the regional owner and managing director of RE/MAX in Western Australia, which he purchased in 2009 and currently ranks as WA’s fastest growing group. 

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