An Overview of Marketing and Selling Affordable Homes

Steps in the Home Marketing and Sales Guide

The Guide walks you step-by-step through the marketing and sales planning process:

1.  Creating the Marketing and Sales Team

Marketing and sales is a team effort of those engaged in product development, pricing, customer service, promotion, sales and – in the case of neighborhood stabilization – community building and organizing and neighborhood leadership. This chapter suggests who should be on your team, the team members’ responsibilities and how their skills can be enhanced.

2.  Researching the Market

Before you plan, you need to understand the market you are working in – from macro to micro. Do you thoroughly understand your competition, the market of potential buyers at your price point and slightly higher, what life is like on the block on which your home is located, and how your local mortgage underwriters are looking at loan applicants this month? This chapter will address how to research all of these questions and more, so your planning time is focused on what matters.

3.  Setting the Marketing and Sales Goal(s)

In this section, we’ll discuss how to break your sales goal into a pipeline of subgoals over time – ensuring that you are able to recognize flaws in the program early and make adjustments along the way.

4.  Defining the Customer Profile and Identifying Target Markets

You probably know your customer profile – the brief description of buyer eligibility and qualification. But all qualified, eligible buyers are not the same. This chapter will discuss how segmenting the market into groups of buyers with similar characteristics can help you tailor marketing messages and tools so they capture attention and interest.

5.  Defining or Refining the Product

No amount of promotion can sell a product that fails to meet its target market’s wants and needs. The product you are selling is not just a home – it is also a neighborhood and a financing scenario. Moreover, you are offering your product package in competition with many other choices in your target buyer’s market. In this chapter, you’ll learn simple techniques to tailor your product’s components so you don’t end up with a house that just doesn’t measure up.

6.  Pricing the Home

Pricing a product to sell involves more than getting an appraisal. The price you set should be part of an integrated strategy informed by the product, the target market, the competition and a real estate professional’s “sixth sense.”. In addition to helping you to set the right price, this section will address changing your price over time if the property does not sell quickly.

7.  Promoting the Product Benefits

Before you create a brochure, flyer or ad, you need to carefully craft your marketing messages so they convey the product’s benefits as your target markets would most appreciate them, in language they would use. In this section, you’ll learn to craft persuasive marketing messages and select promotional strategies and tools to deliver them most effectively.

8.  Evaluating and Refining the Marketing and Sales Plan

Even the best plans do not experience 100 percent success on their first execution. Some strategies will work, and other won’t. Some of your assumptions will be right on target and others will miss the mark. As discussed in this section, good evaluation methods will allow you to tell the difference as soon as possible so you can adjust the plan immediately.

9.  Creating a Marketing Budget

This chapter will help you create a marketing and sales budget that covers a real estate agent sales commission and other marketing expenses.

10.  Pulling It All Together

In this section, you’ll see how to pull your completed worksheets into a marketing and sales plan document.

In the next chapter, we’ll get started with Creating the Marketing and Sales Team.