Before I took the plunge and returned to college to do my masters, I spent 10 happy (well, mostly!) years working as an auctioneer. I was lucky enough to begin my career in a thriving property market that was just about to be picked up and carried away by the beast that was the Celtic tiger.
Marketing in the property world in those days consisted mainly of glossy brochures, carefully designed sales packs and expensive media advertising campaigns. To be fair, there wasn’t a huge need to be too inventive – properties were selling like hotcakes and there was plenty of money to spend on outsourced marketing.
Like the Celtic tiger, I too took off running for the proverbial hills towards the end of the noughties. The property market was nose-diving, with little sign of a safety net to break its fall. Even then though, it was hard to believe just how bad this recession was shaping up to be. The property market became an incredibly tough game and, like so many other young auctioneers, was no longer one I could afford to stay playing.
That was eight years ago and we’re only now beginning to see auctioneers start to recover, and begin to progress again. I recently did some work with an agent who told me that the last 10 years have been mostly about ‘survival’ and it is only now that they can afford to focus on growing and investing in the business.
Technology has changed enormously in those lost years and with it communication and marketing techniques. This has left a lot of property professionals struggling to keep up and utilise these new technologies to effectively market and sell. The demise of print media has also pushed those involved in sales to turn towards the online world of promotion.
Digital marketing is by far the most effective form of promotion available to businesses today. It is user-friendly, extremely cost-effective and easily measurable. And we haven’t even mentioned the fact that 70% of us in Ireland now research goods and services online. It’s a no-brainer.
So when I was asked to speak at the upcoming SCSI Annual Conference, I jumped at the chance. The property market is one I understand and I know the benefits that embracing the online world can bring to it.
At the conference I will be looking at areas including an overview and benefits of social media usage, identifying and using the right platforms for the right audience, content writing and identifying and contributing to local media opportunities.
I’m looking forward to my brief return to the property market and hope to see plenty of familiar faces in the crowd!