The advantage to being top of mind, as a luxury real estate marketing professional, in your marketplace is getting the lion’s share of the business. There is also a secret advantage of being the popular choice. Although, Cherry Garcia ice cream, from Ben & Jerry's, has many raving fans vanilla, chocolate and strawberry ice cream are by far the favorite choices with vanilla winning hands down as "most popular".
Ranking top of mind in luxury branding is even more important that ranking #1 on a Google search, because the overwhelming majority of affluent consumers rely on referrals from friends, family and colleagues when choosing products and services. Any real estate agent with enough funds can hire a search engine optimization expert to help him or her secure the #1 position in a Google search query. But, will the website visitor who clicks through the top listing actually hire the top ranking agent on Google at the end of the day if they are not accomplished and competent--or popular?
There is a lesser known factor that influences the choices of high net worth consumers when selecting a luxury real estate marketing professional. That is, taking into consideration what others will think of them based on the agent they select. While some consumers are “inner-referred”, meaning that they rely on their own judgment more so than others, a significant number of people care more about what others think of them. The “outer-referred” consumer will bypass their gut instincts (and taste buds if they prefer Jerry Garcia) just to look good in the eyes of their peers, neighbors or family (who prefer vanillla).
Have you ever been in a restaurant when the server suggests a menu item and adds, “This is a very popular choice”? Studies have shown that when it comes to choosing brands of food to serve at a party the host will purchase the “popular choice”, e.g., Coke vs.. Pepsi even if the host prefers the taste of a generic brand that is cheaper.
To summarize, if you want to gain or sustain market leadership you need to stand out and achieve “top of mind” status for three important reasons: 1) most potential referral sources can only remember a few brand names (vanilla, chocolate and strawberry) when asked for a recommendation for a luxury real estate agent ( see more detail on this); 2) Top of mind generates more leads than qualified search engine leads because affluent consumers rely on personal referrals more than Google, and; 3) The popular choice is a hidden influence in selecting an agent
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