MADISON, NJ: Coldwell Banker Real Estate has launched a digital platform to make the home-selling process more fun, engaging, and interactive for the sellers themselves.
The platform allows them to post personal photos, videos, and stories about their homes, thereby involving them in the marketing process for the first time.
Sean Blankenship, SVP of marketing at Coldwell Banker, explained that about 70% of consumers said they want to participate more in the selling of their own homes, according to the company’s research. He added that buyers also said they want to hear directly from sellers.
The research also showed that 87% of Americans feel that the home-buying and selling process could be improved. More than 2,000 adults took part in the Harris Poll survey between September 5 and 9.
"Think about a unique home and its memories and neighborhood," Blankenship said. "If the walls could tell a story, what would that look like? Well, the walls can tell the story — we just never allowed them to before. The sellers are the ones who have lived the story, so they’re telling it now."
Blankenship emphasized that the platform won’t make agents obsolete – if anything, it will provide more value for the agents and sellers, he said. Anything posted by sellers must be reviewed and approved by their agents in order to show up on the platform. Coldwell Banker held training sessions for its agents last month to get them used to the new tool.
The platform will soon also provide real-time feedback from potential buyers about aspects of a home they do or do not like, allowing both agents and sellers to figure out ways to market the house.
Coldwell Banker worked with numerous firms on the effort, including PR agency CooperKatz, which took the lead bringing the initiative to life because of its emphasis on storytelling, said Blankenship. Digital design firm Nickelfish, Siltanen & Partners Advertising, media shop Mediacom, and SEO and content integrator AMP also worked on the effort.