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No photo is a big mistake

July 24 2012

victor photo 1

Real Estate agents sometimes fall into stinkin' thinkin'. In the exuberance of getting a new listing, they rush to put it into the MLS before getting even a single photo taken. This is a big mistake.

Many agents fail to understand that without photos, you do not have a listing. Nobody cares that an MLS# XXXXXX at address YYYYYYYY is for sale at the low, low price of just under $1 million. Moreover, you just poured water on your Go To Market Plan for the listing.

I doubt that there is any argument that photos are central to real estate marketing. A picture is worth 1000 words. Photos make a big difference.

victor photo 2

Clearly, you can tell the difference in the allure of these two photos. In the first picture, the agent did not know how to set the camera. In the second photo, they did. The first photo looks dreary. The second photo looks charming. But photo quality is not my point here. The issue is No Photo!

You only get one chance to make a first impression. When a new listing is loaded into the MLS, magic happens. Every consumer who has a saved search that matches that search criteria gets a new listing notification. Every agent website, every broker website, every third party website, and every customer working with an agent that has notifications set in the MLS. In other words, with no photo, your listing goes out to every single person looking for a house like the one you are selling, instantly!

I have heard all of the agent rebuffs as to why this happens. "I wanted to get the listing in before the weekend." "I get more calls when there is no photo." "I did not have time to get a photographer to the house." These are all lame arguments. Stop making excuses for lousy marketing and start doing it right. Make a great first impression.

Here is one final hint: If there is a real reason why the photo could not be added into the MLS when the listing was posted, check the box that says "Do not display on internet." You will need to have the customer sign the MLS document that allows this, but if you explain why, I believe that your customer will understand. Once the photos are loaded, uncheck the box and let your listing fly out to consumers. Your response rate will be excellent and you will create the best possible first impression of your new listing.