Competition in newspaper

I am getting ready to run an ad in my local paper. Unfortunately, there is already someone marketing the exact same thing. She has a 4 inch ad with her pic (a trustworthy face), saying best cash offer for your home, no repairs, no commissions, no closing costs, fast closing, 25 years experience buying homes.

Now, I am at a loss as to how to compete with her ad. Are there any techniques you guys have used to get people to call your number instead of the other guys’? :help


If your ‘competitor’s’ ad has been in there a while, it’s working.

Don’t be afraid of the competition. Look for whose doing the same thing over and over, and practically speaking, copy them.

Who knows, maybe your competition is lazy and doesn’t answer the phone professionally, or at all? Maybe their lead-capture is a mess?

Call the competitor’s ad and see what they say. Can you improve on what they offer?

It doesn’t take that much (usually) to differentiate yourself from any competitors.

I’ve dealt with this every so often. I had a guy literally duplicate my ‘best’ ad on craigslist (and who knows how many other places) and after discussing this with my team, we simply added more ads. However, to be fair, my competitor was smart. He looked to see who was doing what and for how long, and guess what? My ad fit the criteria for duplication. The dumb part was that he didn’t differentiate himself from us. However, it spurred us to differentiate ourselves from HIM.

To illustrate why your competition may be a blessing in disguise, advertising-wise, is to consider that wherever there is one fast-food restaurant, there is at least two others (and sometimes a bunch more).

It’s not because of zoning. It’s because a lone restaurant does better when surrounded by competitors. The clump of restaurants is a magnet to food eaters. People will often choose where to eat after they show up to where all the restaurants are grouped. People like choices and will go where the ‘variety’ exists.

The worst situation is one restaurant, by itself, located in the parking lot of a mall. There’s no obvious options, and it just looks like ‘out-of-options-ville’.

This is not a zero sum game of customers for us. If the competition is there, that means there’s plenty of remaining opportunity; the perception of options; and did I mention opportunity? Also, you can more easily present a benefit-offering differentiation between the competition when they’re all together.

To illustrate this, McDonald’s, Taco Bell and Burger King are all fast-food restaurants. However, people eat at McDonalds BECAUSE its NOT Taco Bell.

They also might go to Burger King, BECAUSE its NOT McDonalds.

So the differentiation is all-important, even though all the restaurants might be doing essentially the same thing; selling fast-food.

So what differentiates you from the competition that you can capitalize on?

I agree, if your competition is successful in what they are doing then you should copy them. Test out their technique and record your results, if they are sub par go back and try and tweak your text around and placement of your ad.

Good info guys. I’ll try calling and be an unmotivated seller :evil

A couple ideas I have: I can use a line like ‘call now and received a free (fill in the blank)’ I could offer a free 10 min consultation, or a report of some sort, but I’d have to find one first. She doesn’t use color in her ad, so that may be a possibility.
What do you guys think about a pic? Maybe a pic of a family and say “we will buy your house cash, no hassles, so that you are free to focus on what’s most important to you” or something to appeal to their desire to get rid of a house that’s stressing them out.

She already has hers above fold and near the top of the page. I’ll do that too!

I think Jav made some really good points. I will however say that when my competitors try to copy my marketing more or less, that I saw a huge surge in phone calls. So example, when people tried copying my bandit signs or newspaper ads, because I had been doing it for a while, people almost assumed that my competitors signs belonged to me! So they helped me get calls! So it’s important to consider that. The one way you can differentiate yourself is as Jav was suggesting which is be that investor who makes it a point to get back to the seller the quickest, or figure out some other way. I’ve found over the years that marketing is a really funny and weird thing. One thing is for sure though, you have to understand that sellers will respond to something if they’ve seen it many times. If your just starting your marketing, you are at a disadvantage in that respect. Last point that I’d like to make that is important is I’m a big believer in the fact that I wouldn’t make a big deal about any one specific form of marketing just on its own like that. You want to have a variety of different marketing types. Diversity counts.

We see where the ads hurt a lot of people when the ad say we pay cash for your home. And the seller find out the buyer has no cash but only want to take over the payments and the ad become less attraction. We tell investors when you say we buy your home for cash have cash in hand.

I would go head to head, after all as someone said it must be working or else it would be gone. I would try to have mine placed next to hers saying “I don’t offer a pretty face I just offer more money. Plus can anyone tell me how you can do this for 25 years and still look 28, is honesty a problem here? I’ve been doing this for a long time and believe me I don’t look 28 !!!” and let the cards fall where they may and see what happens, it may work or it could backfire, wouldn’t be the first time I had to dodge some incoming. Or if your chicken you can just use the first sentence.