Florida Realtor April 2013 : Page 21
reaching global buyers and investors take on the tools to World listings, listings everywhere by Bernice Ross, PhD We’ve got the best and the brightest ideas for marketing to global buyers and investors. Looking for places to advertise your listings so you can reach more global buyers and investors? We’ve got some options. Reaching global buyers contin-ues to be a challenge for many sales associates. How do you get the type of exposure for your prop-erties that will encourage the people you target to actually look at them? While sites such as Immobel.com and ProxioPro.com allow you to translate your listings into multiple languages, enabling you to reach global customers r in their own languages, there are a number of other important ways to expand your global reach to convert more listings to sales. Tools for Maximum Exposure First, to sell virtually any listing, you will get a maximum price when you achieve maximum exposure to the marketplace. Each of the tools listed April 2013 FLORIDA REALTOR 21
Tools To Take On The World
We’ve got the best and the brightest ideas for marketing to global buyers and investors.
Listings, listings everywhere
Looking for places to advertise your listings so you can reach more global buyers and investors? We’ve got some options.
Reaching global buyers continues to be a challenge for many sales associates. How do you get the type of exposure for your properties that will encourage the people you target to actually look at them?
While sites such as Immobel.com and ProxioPro.com allow you to translate your listings into multiple languages, enabling you to reach global customers in their own languages, there are a number of other important ways to expand your global reach to convert more listings to sales.
Tools for Maximum Exposure
First, to sell virtually any listing, you will get a maximum price when you achieve maximum exposure to the marketplace. Each of the tools listed here can help you achieve that important goal. But, more importantly, your local Multiple Listing Service (MLS) may provide some of these tools at no charge.
The simple step of showing sellers the way you will market their listing globally, especially if you’re in an area that has a large number of global customers, can often help you walk away with the listing.
Here are six international marketing tools that can give your sellers global exposure at a minimum price.
A Place in the Sun
(Aplaceinthesun.com) This U.K.-operated site offers a property search and, for a fee, listings from almost 100 countries.
Point2Homes, available to individual sales associates who buy Point2Homes websites or who belong to the service’s listing syndication network through their MLS, has syndicated its listings in more than 100 countries.
If your MLS offers this service or if you’re already a Point2Homes subscriber as an individual sales associate, discuss this service on your listing appointments, including the list of countries it serves.
Click on the American flag at the bottom of the home page to bring up English.)
If you want to tap into the enormous growth in the number of Chinese buyers in the U.S. market, this is the tool to use. Juwai means Home Overseas. Juwai currently is the largest source of property listings in Mandarin.
You can post your listings and pay only when they sell to a Chinese buyer, or you can pay at the time of the listing and add your branding, logo and contact information. Juwai will automatically translate your listings into Mandarin. The site supports its Chinese users with international property news, country investment guides, education and immigration information, and country lifestyle guides as well as personalized property and news alerts. It also provides localized listing information, including currency, metric conversion and customized Google maps in Mandarin.
Similar to Craigslist, Kijiji is a classified ad listing site in Canada. While used mainly for electronic gadgets and cars, it still gets a fair amount of traffic for home listings.
This social media site allows you to connect with other sales associates who market their listings globally. This is a great way to build referrals with other agents who work internationally both inside and outside the United States.
Glozal allows consumers to search listings from various MLSs without the hassle of registering. For example, when you search for listings in Beverly Hills, Glozal takes you directly to the Westside MLS, where you can view all its listings. For other Southern California listings, Glozal will take you to the Multi-Regional MLS, a site that uses the Immobel translation service to make all listings it displays available in the user’s native language.
Additional Glozal services include unlimited text messages, listing messages, mobile website messages, 2-D barcodes, leads and hosting. Fees begin as low as $19.95 per month.
This site is one of the most popular real estate listing sites in the United Kingdom. Most of its listings are located there, but about 3,700 U.S. properties are listed on the site as well.
This site’s goal is to have “everyone in the world be able to afford to list with us.” While individual sales associates may not join, your office can join for $100 per year per office plus $5 per listing. According to its website, World MLS “provides worldwide exposure to all local markets. … Agents benefit by being able to offer sellers more exposure, buyers more opportunity, and by having a greater chance of successfully completing more transactions.”
Other features include secure logins, the ability to load up to five pictures and a virtual tour per listing, along with a link to your company website and the listing agent’s contact information.
To market effectively on these various sites, provide rich content that illustrates what it’s like to live in your market area. When possible, provide links to photos showing your area’s lifestyle.
Even better, create a well-produced video tour of your community. If you’re fluent in other languages, do versions with the narration in those languages that you speak.
You can also use this approach in marketing your listings. Rather than just tell people, “I speak your language,” film videos for each of your listings, describing the listing in the languages in which you’re fluent. Or, if you want to reach a specific group that speaks a language in which you aren’t fluent, you could also hire someone who speaks that language to narrate the video for you.
Typical international buyers locate the listings they want to see online before traveling to the United States to purchase. Your goal is to make your site the one place where they can find everything they need to know about living in your area.
Reprinted with permission of RealEstateCoach.com.
Be there Without Being there
Online tools and apps that allow you to connect with global buyers from anywhere.
By Doug Devitre
Working with buyers in other countries is getting easier and easier with the advent of technology tools that allow you to remotely connect with outof- the-area customers. Here are some that Devitre recommends:
1. Join.me — This free app for iPad, iPhone and Android allows you to chat with prospective global buyers and investors, share your screen and send files for quick meetings.
What to use it for: Use it to share your screen with buyers and investors. Demonstrate how to use a website, help buyers fill out forms and walk them through a contract or offer.
2. Doceri — This free, professional iPad interactive whiteboard screencast recorder offers sophisticated tools for hand-drawn graphics and built-in remote desktop control.
What to use it for: Use a stylus to mark up listing photos and highlight information important to your customers. This iPad app allows you to mirror what’s on your iPad. So, if you’re reviewing a contract or an agreement, you can highlight areas you need to explain. If you have the listing pulled up on your iPad you can get into “draw mode” and take notes on the screen. Save this information into a file that you can email to the buyer or investor later. Or, take a screen shot of the information and text it to the buyer. Another benefit is if you have templates or PowerPoint slides about, for example, how to get a visa, you can integrate your notes into the conversation to be more diagnostic rather than prescriptive. Circle what you’re talking about and draw arrows to points you want to emphasize.
3. Skype — This free app allows you to make Internet phone calls to other Skype users for free. Need more services? Skype has a paid service as well. You can choose to call from a mobile device, smartphone, tablet or your computer, with or without video.
What to use it for: Be there without being there with Skype. Use the video feature to interview prospective customers, share files and screens, and more. Using Skype video allows you to have a more personal conversation than a simple voice call with an out-of-town buyer or investor.
9 Global social Media sites
Social media allows you to get information to prospective buyers and investors quickly and easily.
Social media makes it much easier to reach global buyers and investors. But, cautions Doug Devitre, president of technology and social media consultancy Doug Devitre International Inc. in St. Louis, you should consider it an adjunct to your existing strategy. After all, he explains, there’s only so much you can accomplish in person and by phone. “Social media helps you leverage your time and communicate with a larger group of people,” he says. That can be particularly useful for the international agent who doesn’t have the time or resources to regularly visit countries like the Czech Republic, Germany, Canada and Brazil.
So, what should you post? Devitre suggests you focus less on the services you offer and more on the information global buyers want most, such as a primer on how real estate sales work in the United States, information about local communities and the amenities they offer, and answers to frequently asked questions about the process. Address those issues through posts, videos, feedback (on other people’s posts) and other interactions.
Here are some social media sites that can enhance your international presence online:
Read the full article at http://browndigital.bpc.com/article/Tools+To+Take+On+The+World/1347792/151310/article.html.