Thursday, June 9, 2011

Luxury Real Estate Marketing: So, You Want to Be a Market Leader-Part 6

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In our previous post (Part 5) of our series entitled, So You Want to Be a Market Leader, we covered one of the key vulnerabilities that luxury real estate market leaders tend to exhibit: losing focus. In this post we cover the other key vulnerabilities: Being complacent and being “tech-challenged”. If you want to overtake the incumbent market leader, rather than identifying an uncontested market niche that you can dominate, you need to assess your opponent’s weakest link and wage an all-out battle that is 100% concentrated on one of these three specific vulnerabilities.

Complacency, a common vulnerability of market leaders in luxury real estate, usually manifests in the form of neglect of the relationships that got them to the #1 position in the first place. Lack of consistent personal communication with their sphere of influence can create a very compelling reason to switch if the challenger excels at this and offers a remarkably distinct value proposition.

The consistent use of superior technology (especially methods for attracting a high volume of buyers) aimed directly at a market leader who is not tech-savvy, can be an excellent plan to challenge an incumbent. Incumbents who take on over-priced listings that languish on the market may look impressive to luxury home sellers in the short run. But, eventually, the agent who can demonstrate the ability to bring buyers to the table through superior technology will win the listings, too.

If you want to challenge the incumbent who is “tech-challenged” preempt this powerful attribute of being the most tech-savvy. That means, be the first challenger to seize this brand position by “owning” the very words “tech-savvy” as a brand position. Be the first to brand yourself as the tech expert in the competitive landscape that exists, not in your computer or in your office or in some other physical location in your marketplace, but in the minds of your target market.

When you are the first to take on the opposite attribute of the incumbent market leader as your brand position you stand a great chance of at least being #2. That is because you have framed the race for market leadership as a two person or two-company contest: “Tech-savvy” vs. “tech-challenged”. Creating an either/or contest summarily dismisses the rest of the would-be challengers for market leadership who may try to own this attribute in the minds of the target market.

Today, being tech-savvy is much more than just generating leads specifically for properties. It encompasses the art of building an audience of raving fans through social media and engaging in peripheral or indirect marketing. Tiffany & Company has just launched a social media website that we will review in Part 7 of this blog series that positions the jeweler to own the word “love” in the minds of its target market. If you want to sell engagement rings as your core product that would be an excellent word to own.

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