Posts filed under ‘Advertising’
As many of you may have noticed, Craigslist has been making some BIG changes over the last few weeks. First it was that a zip code was required. Inconvenient, yet not earth shattering. Then, it was HTML photos not allowed. Followed by anchor text. None of this was a big deal, and was easily remedied. Now however, we are taking a big hit on ads not allowing any type of link in them. Even the long and dirty ones.
This ad in todays CL world no longer will exist. The photo will disappear, the anchor text (hyperlinked) words will not be linked, and the long URL will not be clickable.
So the big question is, what do we do?
FIRST. STOP FREAKING OUT. Myself, as well as many of the other tech folks out there have been overloaded by emails, texts, FB messages and more with people all worked up over a simple thing. We understand that Craigslist has been a big part of your business. We also have been teaching for years to focus on other pillars of business in case CL ever did something like this. That day is here, I hope you’ve prepared.
SECOND. FIND A WORK AROUND. Now, there have been some work arounds suggested. Myself as well as some others are working on the problem as well. I can tell you, that we will not find a solution that will result in as much traffic as before! EXPECT your CL traffic to drop, significantly. We’re currently testing some solutions to see what type of traffic results they get.
THIRD. HANG TIGHT. If you find yourself breathing into a paper bag to stop the hyperventilating, just calm down and hang tight for a little bit. Craigslist has continued to make these changes over the last two weeks. We need to wait for the storm to pass to make sure we aren’t coming up with a solution that will be outdated in 4 days.
FOUR. PICK UP THE PHONE AND PROSPECT. Take this as a great time to pick up the phone and call all of the other leads that you have, and your sphere of influence.
Long story short, don’t let this stop business for you. Focus on your other pillars of lead generation and when the dust settles in a week or so we will give you the best solution we’ve found along with some solid results analysis from it. Til then, I love you all. BUT PLEASE STOP PANICKING AND FILLING UP MY INBOX 🙂
As real estate agents we are always trying to find ways to outpace the next guy or gal. In the last 5 years with websites becoming such a huge part of our business model, we now need to outpace everyone there too. So the question came up this afternoon in my technology mastermind session, “How do we drive online traffic to our websites; cheaply?”
Being an internet based person I could go on for hours on this. But, I thought back, far far back to when I first got started in real estate and had NO budget. What did I do? Well, one of the first things I did was advertise on craigslist, like crazy! Still do to this day actually, with much success.
This leads into why I am not a fan of Postlets, simply because Postlets overwhelms craigslist these days. It is where they first gained momentum as a company. Although they are very pretty, and easy to set up; I find them to be quite dysfunctional when it comes to supporting an overall web strategy. Lets think about it. If a buyer is on the web which are they more likely to do; pick up a phone and call you, or click the add to see more information on your website? The obvious and correct answer is the latter of the two. They want more information without actually having to reach out to you. Ask for the order you are most likely to receive. So your wondering why postlets doesn’t help this. After all, they offer a great description, multiple photos, and a small link to your email and main web page. The reason this doesn’t help is just like the flier attached to a sign that tells the buyer EVERYTHING about the house. It allows them to disqualify it, and move on to the next add.
Lets look at a different perspective. You make a very simple HTML add (which can be done in MSWord), stating the general size, location and a highlight or two of the home and a link back to your website. Here’s what happens. Buyers click on the link because the brief description intrigues them and they want more information or pictures. This then leads them into your website where they can get “caught in your web”….and registration points. Tada!!! Traffic has not only been driven to your website, but you are also likely to capture regististration.
Now don’t get me wrong. Postlets is not a bad product, and the “Postlets Pro” version is significantly better (although it is $10 an add)… but there are far better methods to get registrations, web traffic and advertise your properties; for far cheaper. Sometimes the simple easy way out isn’t very effective. So, if anyone uses postlets and gets good clickback traffic or leads I would be curious to know.