Tom has a problem.
He lives in a cramped apartment that he hates, but it was the only one he could find near his job.
He hates his job, he hates the drudgery of his 9-5 life and he’s starting to worry about whether he’ll be able to afford a comfortable retirement.
His problem has become to define him. Night after night he searches online looking to find a way out.
It’s Facebook that starts him on his journey. He sees a good friend posting beautiful shots of his trip to San Juan del Sur.
Tom starts to feel a call to adventure. Maybe reinventing his life abroad is exactly what he needs? Maybe he’d feel a sense of freedom, his life would be simpler, and he’d be less worried about money?
He’s still skeptical and uncertain and he’s got lots of questions, but his perspective is broadening.
Then a friend of a friend introduces him to a website on San Juan del Sur. He sees articles that help him understand the local lifestyle. He subscribes to their updates and starts to get a good look at life in the area.
He doesn’t send any real estate inquires because he’s not ready yet. But he knows he’s in the right place if he wants to find a way to make the move abroad.
After 6 months it’s time for Tom to make a decision: Stay in his ordinary world, or escape from it.
He contacts several sellers for a showing and books his plane ticket to San Juan del Sur.
Ok that’s a nice story… so what? What does it mean for you as a seller?
Introducing the Concentric Circles of Attraction
People don’t buy international real estate impulsively. Looking back over our 10 years in real estate we know that the typical selling cycle in Nicaragua is six months to two years depending on the type of buyer. Are they relocating? Are they looking for an investment property? Are they looking for a vacation home?
An effective marketing strategy is about creating a stream of relevant and engaging content that matches up with those selling cycles.
Imagine a series of concentric circles. Right at the center of the circles is the property that you have for sale. And each circle represents a varying degree of attraction and trust.
Here’s Tom again.
Once Tom becomes aware of Nicaragua, he starts at the outermost circle as an information seeker. At this point he is not a buyer. He’s not ready to see your real estate listing because he’s not sure that Nicaragua is right for him. At this stage he’s looking for context and educational content first. He first needs a picture of what his life would be like if he decided to make the move.
After several months he signs up to an email sub-list on buying real estate in Nicaragua. At this stage he’s considering buying. He’s raised his hand to receive further education about real estate in Nicaragua and to receive information on specific properties for sale in San Juan del Sur.
Finally, and this can take many months, there’s conversion. This is where your property listing comes in. He books a showing and gets on a flight.
Here’s the takeaway:
San Juan del Sur gets a lot of out-of-market buyers, people looking for a second home or retirement place in Nicaragua. These people need context. They need to get a good look at life in the area and they need to be educated about the real estate buying process before they are in a position to put in an offer on a property.
These are the leads you want to interact with. This is the type of traffic you want to your listings. It’s the qualified buyers, the people who have the information they need in order to business with you. Everything else is a waste of time.
PS: If Tom’s story sounds familiar, you might have met Tom before.