Most of us have those times of trying to be all things to all people, and most of us fail. Jack/Jill-of-all-trades is a great idea, but is rarely functional in real life. When I was in business school, the idea of being great at what I do and hiring others who are great at what they do was reinforced daily.
Where it comes to marketing generally, and specifically when your marketing concerns a specific person or family, and a product - a home purchase - a highly-emotional process - quality of marketing really matters to that client, and to you. Trying to be "all things to all people" can fail badly. It isn't a question of desiring to be the best at everything, but a fact time simply doesn't permit.
Here are some facts about real estate and realtors - and these are general; every area of the country, and cities and towns within those areas, will have their peculiarities:
- On average, realtors sell between 12 and 15 homes a year. Some are very high-producers and some not; generally, however, those figures form the average.
- In major markets, single-family homes sell between $450,000 and $650,000 - and again, these are averages; Vancouver and Toronto currently skew national averages quite a bit.
- Most commissions are shared between two realtors, so, on an average sale, each realtor will make in the area of $9000 before brokerage fees and marketing costs, based on the average sold price.
Photography for an entire year is half of one commission, is a cost of doing business and is a write-off against annual income: Win/Win.
Some people see photography as an unnecessary cost; here's how I see it:
- It is important to understand almost all those looking for a realtor, and those looking to buy a home, begin their research on line. On this basis alone, the quality of listing photography is paramount. Why? because studies over the last five years show clearly home-seekers click away from poorly-photographed listings: your listing may be wonderful, but if it doesn't look wonderful on line, a potential buyer may skip over it. Worse, if your listings look poor, potential clients will move on to another realtor, whose listings look great.
- From the client's perspective, excellent listing photography means the seller sees their home looking gorgeous. My goal is to hear, "Wow, that looks amazing! I'd buy that," from the client.
- From the realtor's perspective, if their MLS listings consistently look gorgeous they'll attract more - and better - clients. Clients are attracted by beautiful listings and beautiful listings mean a dedicated professional realtor.
- Beautifully-photographed listings sell faster. This is a fact, and this also plays into reputation and more importantly, into referrals!
- Clients have higher regard for realtors who have a team of professionals around them.
Beautiful photography matters; it is influential, it establishes you as a pro and as a reliable professional, and, most importantly, it shows your clients they are your primary concern.