Having an open house is one of the tried and true ways to get possible home buyers into a property that’s on the market. In theory, it’s a great method. You are bringing in a large number of people all at once to show them the property and hope someone makes an offer. Even if someone who initially visits the open house doesn’t make an offer, the event can lead to more word-of-mouth sharing, so news of the property gets “out there.”
However, an open house isn’t necessarily as easy as it seems, which is something real estate agents know all-too-well.
Homebuyers face more distractions than ever before, and it’s challenging to get their attention enough to even get them to an open house.
Rather than sitting around an open house alone and hoping someone comes in the front door, the following are some tips to get people there.
Use Social Media
In the past, the primary way to promote an open house was the use of signs or perhaps a newspaper ad.
Signs still work because they help people spot the location more easily, but traditional in-person advertising should also be combined with modern methods like digital advertising.
You can pay for ads on social media sites like Facebook and Instagram, but there are other ways, including many free ways to use social media marketing to get people to your open house.
As an example, consider doing Facebook lives or Instagram lives on social media where you showcase the house to get people interested. You can also use Pinterest pins or add YouTube videos showcasing the properties.
Look for local community groups that you can join and share news about the open house on social media, and integrate hashtags—particularly hyperlocal hashtags so that people are more likely to connect with your event.
Sometimes people will create an entire Facebook page for a property and this is a place to consolidate all information, including open house dates in one easy-to-manage place.
Use Real Estate Sites
There are some great real estate listing sites that you can use as a resource to promote an open house. For example, there is Zillow but also Realtor.com and Trulia. You can add your events on those sites, but do so in advance so people have time to see the listing and plan to attend.
You want to make sure you have really high-quality photos if you’re adding your listing to a real estate site, and write a compelling home description as well.
Use Email Marketing
As a real estate agent, one of the best things you can do to boost your reach is to work on building a large email list and regularly sending compelling, informative emails.
You don’t want to always send sales and marketing emails because this can turn your audience off.
Instead, create emails with information and tips that your audience will find useful and then they’ll be more likely to open your emails about open houses when they arrive.
As was touched on, online and digital marketing is great but not the only ways to spread the word about a property and in particular an open house.
It’s often best to combine online and offline marketing methods to ensure the most people hear about your open house and hopefully ultimately attend it.
As an example, maybe you hand out materials in the local neighborhood.
Think about the people and demographics that would be most likely to buy the house you have for sale and try to go where they are.
Offer Attendees Something
Everyone loves to get something for free, so incentivize people to attend your open house by advertising something you’ll be giving away.
Maybe you do something like a big prize for people who enter a drawing at the open house.
You can also do food and wine, or maybe a swag bag.
Be aware that this can bring in buyers who aren’t serious, but at the same time, it will get more people in the door and potentially create more buzz.
Finally, when you’re actually in the midst of having an open house, live stream it online and post it to social media sites. This will allow you to share the excitement of the property and the open house with a broader audience.
This is beneficial because millennials currently make up the largest group of first-time homebuyers and 99% of this demographic go online to do home searches.