The Power of Premarketing: How to Host 70 Showings in 7 Days

here’s a good reason the movie industry makes you sit through 30 minutes of previews before the main attraction begins: premarketing works.

Even if a product isn’t available yet, there’s no harm in getting your audience excited about what’s to come. In fact, it’s a smart strategy — even in the real estate industry.

Many landlords assume they need to wait until properties are vacant before listing them. They think people browsing for rentals need a place to live right now, and if a home isn’t currently available, they won’t be interested.

Sure, some people wait until the last minute to find new accommodations, but I believe more people start looking a month or so ahead of time. Posting a “coming soon” listing is the perfect way to attract these potential tenants and line up a bunch of showings for when your property hits the market.

Related: List Your Rentals 4–6 Weeks Before an Expected Vacancy

The Perks of Premarketing

Premarketing rentals gives landlords more leverage.

Instead of saying,“The home has been listed for 45 days, but I swear there’s nothing wrong with it. If I chop $50 off your rent, will you please move in?” landlords can say, “It’s not quite ready yet, but I’ve already scheduled a bunch of tours for next week. I’m happy to add you to the list, but you’ll need to act fast!”

During this window of a few weeks, you might field lots of inquires about your soon-to-be-vacant property. Because it isn’t available yet, prospective tenants might think you won’t be in desperation mode and bombard them with pushy sales speak. When our property management company premarkets a home, we typically line up at least 20 showings for the first two days, and almost always, one of those individuals becomes our tenant shortly thereafter.

As a longtime practitioner of and firm believer in premarketing, I’ve created three pivotal strategies that will help you maximize this tactic:

1. Virtual staging

When consumers are looking for something online — whether it’s true love, an impulse buy, or a place to live — pictures play a big role in their decision-making process. So choose wisely when putting together your premarketing slide show, and invest some time into taking great photos. Don’t post photos of your current tenant’s tacky furniture. A beige La-Z-Boy won’t do your living room justice. But don’t post pictures of an empty house, either. Unstaged homes take 73 percent longer to fill.

Consider hiring a virtual staging expert who can transform your empty home into a model residence featuring beautiful furniture, art, rugs, and other accessories. Virtual staging shows potential tenants what a home looks like when someone with an eye for style maximizes its potential, and that’s what you want people to see when you premarket your home.

2. Persuasive pricing

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