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2010-11-08 18:17:14

Home buyers want more control over information

Have you ever read an article online, got riled up, and looked for a way to leave a comment, only to discover that 6,014 people already posted their opinion on that subject.

It’s hard to imagine the old days when the most interactivity you had with a magazine or newspaper was the ability to flip to the next page.

Today there are comment sections, discussion boards and online polls. You have the ability to upload photos and videos, forward content by emails, subscribe to content by RSS feeds, and comparison shop different products.

The point here is that today’s consumer wants the ability to interact with information that is presented to them.

“Content is no longer something you push out. Content is an invitation to engage with your brand,” said Cammie Dunaway, chief marketing officer at Yahoo.

As a real estate agent, essentially responsible for providing home buying content to consumers, you need to ask yourself: What are you doing to allow your customers to participate in the data-gathering process?

One solution is to provide them with the lifestyle and neighborhood lifestyle search tools offered by SpatialMatch.

Don’t hold back details about the market area. They will look until they find it. Give the home buyer access to tools that gives them the ability explore all the data surrounding their decision.

Let them peruse information on schools, churches, recreational facilities, restaurants, shopping areas.

Give them the opportunity, on your site, to check home values in the area if your MLS and the DoJ allows it, or in the least, communicate with you and request a CMA.

Let them search for homes other than resale in the same region.

Maybe they want to look at new construction. Show them how they can do it.

Make it easy for them to save their lifestyle searches, share it with friends, add a comment, or give and get advice.

You might feel a twinge of fear allowing home buyers access to all of this information, information that previously you had control over and they would have to ask you for it. But let that fear go and embrace the new age.

Modern home buyers are savvy. They will find that information one way or the other.

What will impress them the most, is not that you have this data, but that your site has the property and lifestyle search tools that gives them access to this information. With consumers today, a little bit of control goes a long way.

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