Campaign: Property site makes MD the expert of choice

The buoyant housing market has spawned numerous websites, giving consumers information such as where to find the cheapest property, neighbourhood data and the price last paid for their desired house. Recent newcomer PropertyPrice­, which gives sellers an instant valuation based on their post code, hired Golley Slater to stir up interest in its launch.

Client Property Price Advice
PR team Golley Slater
Timescale January 2006-ongoing
Budget Undisclosed

To position the website's managing director, Louisa Fletcher, as an expert on the property market.

Strategy and Plan
Reaching consumer property magazine writers was a priority, so Golley Slater hired a room at IPC Media's offices and invited journalists to get a personal valuation of their home.

To encourage journalists to turn to Fletcher as the industry expert, the MD was on hand to explain how her website worked. 

In a bid to secure coverage in national and regional newspapers'  property supplements, Golley Slater commissioned research into home improvements that add value to a property. It broke the results down by region, tailoring press releases accordingly.

For instance, it highlighted the fact that double-glazing and conservatories often fail to add value, while a third bedroom will add significantly more value to a property in London than in Manchester.

Case studies of homeowners who had successfully used the site to improve the value of their property were also publicised, while Fletcher  was made available for interviews.

Measurement and Evaluation
Nationally, coverage was achieved in the property supplements of The Times, Sunday Mirror, Metro, Daily Express, The Daily Telegraph and The Independent, and in property magazines such as BBC Good Homes and 25 Beautiful Homes. Best, She and Family Circle also covered the website, as did the Birmingham Post, The Yorkshire Post and other regional titles.

Prior to the campaign the website averaged 100 visits a day. It now notches up circa 2,000 visits a day.

Two property TV channels have invited Fletcher to comment as an expert on house valuation. The website has also signed a contract with property sales site fish4homes, prompting subscriptions from estate agents as well as the general public.

Fletcher attributes this success to the press coverage achieved.

Freelance property journalist Liz Hodgkinson praised the website in The Daily Telegraph. ‘The research intrigued me and the press release was very detailed and focused,' she says.

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