Friday, August 11, 2006

Make your Open House stand out

It's Friday, which means many of you will spend part of your late-summer weekend hosting open houses across the country.

Open houses are seen by many agents as a necessary evil, something that sellers expect but in many cases turn out to be a waste of time for the agent. But if you think more broadly about what an open house can do for you and your business, your next open house can be far more productive than ever before.

Below are a few ideas you can use THIS WEEKEND to get more value and long-term prospective business from your open house.

Offer a free gift
When you market your open house (in the newspaper, online, in the MLS, etc.) make it clear that visitors get a free gift just for showing up. This can be something as simple as a "top ten reasons to sell now" report with your name on it, or it can be a 2007 calendar. Whatever it is, give people an extra reason to come to YOUR open house this weekend.

Make the open house FUN
Most open houses I've been to are no more than an open door, an agent sitting sitting on a stool, and some brochures & business cards on the kitchen table. What can you do to make your open house a little more fun, and a lot more memorable? What can you do to make sure those open house visitors not only remember that house, but remember YOU? Fresh-baked cookies? A drawing for ballgame tickets? A game of chance (roll the dice to win one of several prizes)? Do something that matches your personality and interests, so that it comes across naturally. so very few agents do things like this, that it'll immediately help you stand out - benefiting your business and the sale of your open house.

Before people leave your open house, get their contact information. Offer something valuable in return, like a free subscription to your e-newsletter or regular updates of home listings that meet their criteria. Give them a reason to want to stay in touch with you.

Do you have a great open house idea that's helping you make your open house memorable? If so, post it here so that other agents can learn from your success!

Happy Friday!