"You have four seconds to capture someone's attention on your Hom Page," Bettyanne somberly informed me during our marketing meeting last week. I had asked Bettyanne, who is not only a friend, and a marketing maverick, but a previous client, to meet with me one-on-one to help clarify my next steps with respect to an 'Internet presence,' and taking my business to the next level, and what she had to share was eye opening (to say the very least . . .).
"You've done a great job of telling people who you are," she said, but what consumers really want to know is: "What's in it for me?' You can have all the knowledge and experience in the world, but if you don't answer that simple question, they'll move on to someone else. "The simple truth is," Bettyanne continued, "Buyers and Sellers want to know what you can, and will, do for them!"
(Light bulb moment!)
Flashback to Field of Dreams, (one of my all-time favorite movies ever) when Kevin Costner's exasperated character, Ray Canseca, having done everything that was asked of him by the mystery voice, and with his family's farm clearly on the line, finally asks with real exasperation (and a little embarrassment), "What's in it for me?'" (Spoiler alert: mending his relationship with his long- deceased father is in it for him - "If you build it, he will come!")
Of course, anyone in sales understands the "WIIFM" premise at their very core, but I think Bettyanne's relevant point is that rather than qualify who I am, the more critical component of our work together, may be discovering who you are and taking my lead from there.
So after years of writing, commenting, and sharing my thoughts on real estate and the market in general - both through good and challenging times - it's now time for me to ask you for your help in answering this simple question: "What's in it for you?"
So whether we have previously worked together, or you have bought or sold real estate with someone else (I promise I won't hold it against you), I need to know what exactly you are looking for in your agent, what you need, and what may have been missing in your last real estate dealings once the papers were signed and you moved into your new home? In other words: "How can I better improve your experience?"
So put your thinking caps on, find your inner voice and give me your unedited opinion. (I really want to know.) You'll not only be helping me rethink my personal 'Home Page,' but my overall practice and how I can better serve you and meet your needs moving forward. ("If you build it, they will come.")
So . . . What's in it for you? Let's start with a free latte at Mulberry's Market for your trouble and a $100 gift certificate to Wood Tavern on College Avenue for very the best advice I receive. I really appreciate your time and your thoughts.
Julie Gardner, has been writing The Perspective for 12 years and has published more than 500 essays. She is also a frequent contributor to the Sound Off column in the Real Estate section of The San Francisco Chronicle.