Glossy Magazines, Canadian Buyers and Other Stuff

avatarthumbnail.jpgThere are two basic sets of buyers in the real estate world … those who are looking to purchase property in the near term (otherwise known as motivated buyers) and those who might purchase now or two years from now or maybe never, just depending on how the stars happen to align.

Folks who fall into the former category buy homes. Those in the latter category do not. And if someone in the latter category is ready to buy, they usually move into the former category. In fact, people often can jump from one category to the next like electrons suddenly deciding to move from one orbit to the next and back.

A few weeks ago I had clients in town looking at homes in what was supposed to be only a scouting trip. Until they saw a home they liked and we ended up writing an offer. Sadly, someone else already had beaten them to the punch but they found themselves moved from the second category to the first in the span of a weekend.

I mentioned Canadian buyers because, well, that’s what I do around here. Most fall into the latter category, which makes sense – there’s usually a lower priority on purchasing second homes, vacation homes, investment property. There rarely is any real sense of urgency, the feeling that “I have to buy right now or else!” that exists for people who are moving to a primary residence.

A standard joke in the area is that Canadians absolutely love looking at homes, and once in a while they might even buy one. I’ve been fortunate in that many of my buyers, both Canadian and America, have fallen into the “motivated” category and helped me toward the best first five months of my career – including the allegedly magical 2005.

Finding Motivated Buyers in Phoenix Real Estate

And yes, I apologize for the keyword-laden sub-header but Google’s trying to get used to the new URL. But I digress …

The key to effective real estate marketing is to find the motivated buyers. If you happen to reach folks in the latter category, too, that’s fine but you need to play the odds and the odds favor contracts coming out of the former group.

Yesterday one of my sellers asked for a list of all the magazines and newspapers in which their home had been advertised. True to what I promise all of my clients, here was the list in total:

Print advertising, you see, doesn’t work. Buyers inclined to look for homes in the local fish wrap will do so through the online version, not the print version.

As for those glossy homes magazines, they attract three groups … sellers who like to see their homes in a glossy magazine, agents who like seeing their photo in a glossy magazine, and people who like looking at homes in glossy magazines even though they’ll probably not be buying a home anytime within the next few years.

There are fundamental reasons why buyers don’t begin their search (or even augment their search) through the glossy magazines, the primary being a total lack of transparency. You never get an address. In many cases you don’t even get the name of the city in which the home is located. And those in the know understand the deadlines are such that the data in the magazine often is out of date.

People serious about purchasing a home are looking for serious information – addresses, list prices, details, photos of more than the front yard … none of these are available in the magazines.

Some magazines also provide an online platform for agents to advertise but, truth be told, there are a dozen other places I can go without wasting my money on worthless ink.

Finding buyers isn’t the key for you. It’s key for me, but as a seller you’re not really all that worried about that.

We need to find the motivated buyers … that’s what delivers the SOLD sign.

[tags]Phoenix real estate, real estate marketing[/tags]

Jonathan Dalton

Jonathan Dalton is a 40-plus-year resident of the Valley and has been helping folks buy and sell homes since 2004. He can be reached at 602-502-9693 or info at