The Zillovians have been busy lately…first, singing a Zillow-fied Christmas carol…then, more substantively, releasing their new Smart Search technology, which, if I understand correctly, presents different information intelligently, based on where and at what zoom level you’re searching.
At the San Mateo county level, for instance, I get this:
At the city level, this is what I get for Menlo Park:
If I want more info on Menlo Park, I learn that local residents
- are well-educated
- are often multi-lingual
- are likely immigrants
- spend more money on housing compared to others
- ride their bikes to work
With the exception of the latter, it seems spot on.
Nice new features, but nothing earth-shattering.
What I’d really like to see from Zillow is something I’ve talked about before: addressing the advertising needs of buy-side Realtors. The Sellsius twins have weighed in on this issue as well.
Here’s what I have in mind: The advertising emphasis in real estate has always been on the listing side. If a home is for sale, that represents more than just an upcoming commission check for the listing agent: done correctly, it’s also marketing collateral. It’s an excuse to send out more branding postcards, to take out an ad in the paper, to hold open houses, to put out a sign…all things designed more to enhance the branding of the agent than to necessarily sell the home in question.
If the fact that I am selling a home or I just finished listing and selling my client’s home is good marketing collateral, why not make something of I just helped my clients buy a home?
We do a bit of this in the industry already: witness the occasional “represented buyer” newspaper ad — which is often just space filler around the more prominent “just sold” ads.
Zillow has a perfect opportunity here. While most of the online real estate conversation is about homes currently on the market, Zillow’s repository of all homes is perfect for telling a broader story, one which includes the buyer’s agent.
Hey Zillow — in your next product release, make it possible for the buy-side agent to tout their recent transactions too!
Tags: Advertising, Industry, Menlo Park, Real estate, Technology, Zillow
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