We can say that a real estate venture is successful when its marketing strategy is made carefully before launch. This experience came with my over 17 years of experience in Real Estate Industry associated with various ventures at different level in different companies in different locations all over India. Generally many real estate development companies think the role of marketing professional comes only at the time of launch of the project. But, if we involve marketing professional in the budding stage of a venture, for certain and sure the venture will be a success. Before framing a perfect marketing strategy we need to look the following factors:
1. Land: Before acquiring the land, we need to decide what type of venture we are going to come up with. Whether it’s an Integrated Township, Group Housing, Affordable Housing, etc. The product mix and amenities largely depend on the city/town, the locality, the average income, future/past/present development, the profession of majority of the people in the particular city/town, the competitor’s product mix and amenities, etc. Keeping the aforesaid points in mind, when we acquire a land parcel, the main question in many of the builders is what’s next?
2. The Survey: Next most important factor in success of real estate industry is the marketing survey. If the survey is perfect then the project is success. In survey, we need the nearby competitor’s price, product mix, amenities etc. Then we decide what extra we can offer to a customer in a cost effective manner. This is to have a slogan “We are Different”. The next which I am going to discuss is the most crucial point that is the Pricing.
3. The Pricing: The price is a major factor in deciding whether the project is a success or not. Usually in India, many builders keep the price matching the competitor’s price, +/- depending on amenities/largeness of the township/the company brand name etc. They never consult a PMC (Project Management Consultancy) to know the construction cost per sft., never consult marketing department to calculate the marketing cost, never calculate the administration cost, never calculate the land cost, and all other cost incurred in making a township and which impact on the per sft (Square feet) price. A successful pricing strategy is to collect all the aforesaid data to find out the actual cost of construction per sft. Once, we get the construction cost per Sft., then add the profit margin which we decide to have on per Sft. For example: The actual construction cost including all other cost is Rs. 3500/- per Sft. + profit margin of 30% or 40% as decided by the company keeping in mind the competitors price and the amenities we provide. Once these exercise is done by the company, the next question arise is how to market it?
4. The Marketing Strategy: We should always remember that real estate is “Not a push product, it’s a pull product”. You can’t send an executive area wise for a real estate campaign like FMCG or Consumer Durable Goods. Since it’s a pull product, our branding exercise should be carefully planned and executed. In general the marketing budget for well-known branded company in India is in between 5 to 6% of the total project cost. On the other hand a new comer or a FDI company, their marketing budget can vary between 7 to 8% of the total project cost. If the company is new in real estate, an additional advertisement cost on Company Branding also incurred apart from Project Branding. There are various methods of doing a marketing campaign for a real estate project. Its again depend on how big is your project. These are few commonly accepted methods of advertising a real estate venture, viz. Press Conferences, News Paper advertisement, Hoardings, Direct Mailers, Sales Promotional activities, Organizing a get-together among well-known real estate Brokers/Agents, Doing a Soft launch, etc. Before the actual launch of the project, most of the company do a soft launch or pre-launch where in guests, friends & relatives of the employees and management and very few potential customers are invited. The objective of soft launch or pre-launch is to test the pulse of the customers towards the price we kept, the amenities we provide, and the overall opinion about our township. Also, to know the placement of our township in the locality with regards to our competitors. The general practice and most acceptable practice is to keep the per square feet price less in the soft launch. By doing so, we see the acceptance to our price in the market. Based on the response from the customers we can gradually increase the price on a Phase wise manner. By pricing this way, a positive aura is created in the market regarding the appreciation of the property which encourages the customers to invest in our property.
· The Calculation shown is indicative only, and not on actual cost.
After doing the aforesaid exercise, we need to have an excellent marketing team.
5. The Marketing Team: The Marketing Team consists of three departments:
a. Marketing Department
b. The Sales Department
c. The Customer Care/the Customer Support Department.
The overall success of a venture also depends on the Marketing team. In real estate a satisfied customer is an executive of the company. Referral marketing is one of the best ways to let others know about your real estate services. Perhaps the best thing about referral marketing is that you don’t have to pay any money. There is not much work involved with referral marketing and even the majority of that work is done by clients. People naturally want to spread the word when they have received a good service. This word of mouth is known as referral marketing. When your clients have a positive experience with you, they naturally want to tell others about it. The more people who are informed about your excellent services, the more clients you will have. The more clients you have the more money you will make. What’s good about referral marketing is that you get money for making money.
The large part of your real estate business’s referral marketing strategy will come from the way you operate your business. The other part is developing an awareness of your referral marketing tactics. Your clients have to know that you want them to refer you to others. Otherwise, you can’t rely on them to do so. If you have already been informing your clients that you would like them to refer you to others, then you can relax, this part of your work has been completed. On the other hand, if you made the assumption that your clients will naturally refer others to your business then you have some work to do.
Assuming you haven’t informed any clients of your referral marketing strategy, you now need to determine that this will be a part of your business practices. Each customer that you deal with from now on should know, in some form or another, that you would like for him to refer you to another client. You might consider offering some kind of discount for each referral. Many real estate businesses offer such incentives.
Apart of creating awareness of your referral marketing strategy, you need to resolve to always operate in a manner that will give clients a reason to refer others to you. If a client does not have a positive experience with you, chances are that the client will tell someone of his bad experience. This will counter your referral marketing efforts. All it takes is ‘one bad apple’. Be aware of your actions at all times. If there are several facets to your business make sure that each client knows of these services as well. There may be times when a client only receives one of the services that you provide. This same client might know someone who is in need of another service that you provide but does know to refer the person to you. When this happens, your referral marketing has failed. Your referral marketing strategy must include informing clients of all the services you provide. By doing this you are ensuring that referral marketing works best for you.
Developing a referral marketing strategy is not difficult to do. The two major aspects of referral marketing include letting clients know to refer you to others and giving them a reason to refer you. Once you have done both of these things, your referral marketing efforts will bring in new clients for your services. Now, let us discuss about the work flow of a professional real estate company.
1. Greeting the Customer ( Wishing & may I help u)
2. Visitors book ( Name, Profile, phone)
3. Enquiring about the availability of customers time
4. Basic Brochure
5. Brief info (Company Profile, Project Details, Basic Info of the Township & Amenities, Price Range)
6. Accompany the customer to the Audio Visual Room
7. Inform the Sales Team
8. Handling phone calls
Audio Visual Room
1. Virtual tour of the project
2. Introduction about the company & the project
3. Developing & developed stages
4. The tour moves from the main entrance through the roads, landscape, club house, recreational facilities, unit’s elevation interiors & Surroundings.
1. Layout briefing
2. Handling the customer quires about the locations like club House, parks, Swimming pools, etc.
1. While the customer is viewing the display, the Sales person introduces & interfaces
2. Enquiries about the availability of customer time.
3. If the customer is interested to see the show unit then the show unit visit is arranged otherwise a discussion with the customers depending on his time.
1. The customer is driven to the show unit
2. Each show unit is explained by show unit guides.
3. Customer is back to the front desk.
1. The sales person meets the customer.
2. Detailed Brochure
4. Layout & Specifications
8. Loan & Payment Procedure.
1. Serious buyers accompanied by the sales person to the interested Plots.
2. Explaining about advantage of the Plot.
3. Approach Roads
4. Explaining about Vasthu of the particular Plot, Villa, Bungalow or Flat.
1. Some Serious buyers may not be carrying the cheques
2. Blocking the specific Unit for 2 days.
1. Buyer meets the Sales Person.
2. Customer support person is introduced to the buyer.
3. Booking Kit is given to the customer.
4. Booking Kit includes Receipt and payment Plan & Allotment Letter.
Customer Support Process
1. Earning capacity of the customer
2. Mode of Payment
3. Explaining our payment schedule
4. Loan Procedure
5. Explaining about Deviation amount
6. Briefing about Registration Charges.
7. Briefing about facility charges like car parking, water electricity etc.
8. Briefing about maintenance charges & Corpus fund.
1. Agreement of Sale involving Land owner, Developer & Customer.
2. Tripartite Agreement involving Developer, Customer and Banker.
3. Rules & Regulation of the town ship
4. Payment schedule
5. Exact location of the unit
6. The Agreement of sale is use for applying loan and personal payment
7. Agreement kit is given to the customer.
8. Agreement kit includes the Agreement, Receipt.
Margin Money & Deviation Amount
1. Margin money is the differential amount between total unit cost and loan sanctioned.
2. Margin money is collected before loan disbursement.
3. Deviation is the internal modification required by the customer
4. Deviation is specific internal modification offered by the developer.
5. The customer bring his own material
6. Calculation & collection of deviation amount in advance.
7. Based on standard parameters of the company the deviation will be undertaken.
1. Registration is done once the total flat cost along with other charges if any is paid to the company.
Stage of progress
1. Customer support will inform details on stage of progress to the customer at regular intervals.
2. Progress details about the overall development, specific units, floors and blocks will be received from the technical team at regular intervals.
Collection of Regular Installments
1. Based upon the payment schedule for personal payment
2. Depending upon the stage of progress in case of Loan.
3. Coordination with Financial Institutions.
4. Payment Reminders depending upon progress.
5. Calculations of Interest on delayed payments.
Handling Customer Queries
5. Agreement of Sale
6. Tripartite agreement
9. Rules & Regulations of the township.
10. Hand Over.
1. Personal visit by the customer support to ensure the quality of the unit before hand Over
2. Customer visit along with customer support.
3. Customer satisfaction letter is collected from the customer
4. Settlement of accounts if any.
5. Information regarding the Rules & Regulations and maintenance.
6. Getting a no objection certificate from the accounts department.
7. Hand over letter and the keys by the customer support to the customer.
How customers analyze our product:
Design, Location, Ambiance, Appearance, workmanship, Delivery
Speed, Availability, After Sales Services, Pre Sales Advice, Finance
Time established, Reputation, Location, Philosophy, Size, Policies, Financial Standing
Knowledge, Skill, Character, availability, Training, Specialists