“More home shoppers start their search online than ever before.”
“Over 90% of buyers use the Internet.”
This is not news. This is not new information.
The number of home shoppers who start their home search online has been above 80% for years. This is not news. Even early numbers in 2000 showed that 40% of home buyers were using the web. The only way a headline about home shoppers using the Internet will EVER be newsworthy in the future is if the percentage goes DOWN.
Those people who have failed to act on this shift in consumer behavior have not failed to act because they were trying to “time” their entry just right. No builder has been sitting back and saying “Its not time. As soon as usage gets to 92%, we’re full steam ahead.” No one needs more statistics.
A favorite book, titled Fierce Conversations, encourages business owners, executives, and managers to question their viewpoint and address the proverbial ‘elephant in the room.’ It invites everyone to ask themselves the question, “What are you pretending not to know?” Builders who have not been focusing their marketing efforts online are pretending not to know this shift in buyer behavior should have caused a change in strategy a long time ago. Its time to acknowledge it, and then do something.
The only reasonable explanation for inaction is uncertainty and/or lack of knowledge. Not a lack of knowledge that the Internet is where the marketing should be focused, but a lack of knowledge about where to start.
This means what the industry needs is more specific substance and direction, not statistics… Moving past the generic “non-bombs” and delivering actionable information of real value so builders can act with confidence. There is no longer a real need to address the issue of why a builder’s marketing efforts should be focused online. In fact, there hasn’t been for some time now. If someone still needs convincing, I can’t help. Its time to move and dedicate effort to answering the how, where, and what. I’m looking forward to publishing more of just that.