Interesting choice of words
For those of you that don’t know me, I’m not a Realtor (nor have I ever been), but until 2009 I was the Marketing Director at an independent brokerage here in Austin. I came across a listing today online and the MLS description’s first sentence is, “This is a doll house.” A doll house? Seriously?
In my days at a brokerage, I actually marketed this home before it had ever been purchased and have personally been inside nearly 75% of the homes in the rest of the subdivision, so I’m extremely familiarized with the area. I suppose the reason for the claim that “this is a doll house” is that it’s one of the smallest floorplans available and has three bedrooms (one that is smaller than the others) rather than the four that most homes on the street have, but the description is immediately limiting and indicates that it’s a kitchy pink grandma house which it is not.
For entertainment purposes, I posed this question on Twitter:
I was less than surprised at the answers I received:
The moral of the story
I won’t go in to why this is terrible copy, you all have common sense, but I will say that the moral of the story is that real estate agents didn’t study copywriting in college and that’s okay, your MLS copy doesn’t have to be perfect. If you have a marketing director in your office or someone with writing experience, if they’re willing to read and make suggestions for your one paragraph MLS description, take advantage of that.
You can handle the rest of the listing on the MLS, but this one paragraph can make or break a deal, as shown by the people who answered on Twitter indicating they wouldn’t even visit a home based on this first impression, much less buy it. If you don’t have a marketing director, ask one of your buddies with copy experience (via Twitter or Facebook) if they’re willing to read your MLS descriptions, or simply put it out in your public timeline for opinion. Trust me, one simple paragraph isn’t a major inconvenience and I find people on Twitter to be highly willing to share their opinion and help!