Open Houses: Cookies Can’t Redeem a First Impression


Think about your favorite products, your favorite cereal, chips or toothpaste. Whatever the merchandise, we all have preferred items that aren’t the most inexpensive or even “best” product on the market. This is because when we find something we like—because of the way it works, its appearance or a memory with which we associate it—we care little whether it’s economical or the superior product on the market. We buy it because we have a relationship with that brand.

Open houses are meant to help sell a home by attracting agents and potential homebuyers. Therefore, the most important aspect of an open house is getting people to show up and look at the property. How can you attract the most people to the home?

Brokers and agents have been perfecting methods for vibrant open houses for decades. Attractive signs, online listings, balloons and even chocolate chip cookies and lemonade are tools utilized to get people through the door. But what if these techniques don’t work?

Nowadays, you can see everything you want about a listed property online. Virtual tours help you make a judgment on a home without ever leaving your living room. What is the use of good signs and delicious treats with the superb technology that lies at our fingertips?

The first answer to this dilemma is that no matter how advanced technology becomes, it cannot replace human experience. Being inside a home and feeling it is different, and more impacting, than seeing it on a screen. You cannot sense a home’s character through a video.

So, now that an agent or buyer has seen your property online and is interested, how do you get them there? They haven’t seen the home, they haven’t seen your signs, and they don’t know about your famous cookies.

This is where the agent, marketing and reputation become the most important factors. How responsive is your team and with what do consumers associate your brand? Do buyers remember you as the helpful, courteous agent who answered all of their questions despite the fact that they were hesitant and never stopped by the property, or will they recall that you’re hard to deal with and didn’t return their calls?

Authenticity, relationships and personal branding are number one. Above all, you need to be aware of how you present yourself and how you are perceived. This is why good, attentive, loyal customer service is the best practice in everything from listing presentations to open houses.

The way you treat clients is the root of your business, and everything else stems from this source. If you are helpful and considerate, every aspect of your company—from your advertisements to your balloons—will be associated with this professionalism and clients will seek you out, regardless of your property being the most inexpensive or your listing photos the most attractive. Cookies will never do more for you than a respected reputation.


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2 thoughts on “Open Houses: Cookies Can’t Redeem a First Impression

  1. Brianna says:

    Can you please keep up the good work! It is extremely refreshing to read your stuff..
    I wish there was more of it!

    I’ve shared some articles on my facebook timeline and the day before yesterday
    a friend even came over to me asking how I found your site!

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