Agent’s clever cam­paign

The Weekend Post - Real Estate - - Front Page - PASCO ROGATO

CAIRNS real es­tate agent Karl Latham has launched an in­no­va­tive new advertising cam­paign with a dif­fer­ence.

The “Whykarl.com” cam­paign, launched about a month ago, fea­tures ev­ery­thing from per­son­alised num­ber­plates on his BMW to advertising on bus seats.

“The idea was to put per­son­al­ity into a mar­ket­ing cam­paign,” Mr Latham said.

“I wanted some­thing unique, some­thing to be a mo­bile bill­board, but with­out plas­ter­ing my name and face all over the car.

“I wanted to come up with a clever mar­ket­ing cam­paign to put out across as many medi­ums as pos­si­ble, some­thing that cu­rios­ity gets the bet­ter of peo­ple and they click on the web­site (www.whykarl.com).

The Elite Cairns agent has been in the in­dus­try for the past seven years, dur­ing which time Mr Latham has be­come one of the lead­ers in the busi­ness.

For the past two years he has been on Queens­land real es­tate A-list – the only non self­nom­i­nated state rat­ing of real es­tate sales­peo­ple, recog­nis­ing the top 150 per­form­ers out of 18,000 reg­is­tered agents.

Mr Latham said the idea for the Whykarl.com cam­paign was inspired by another of the in­dus­try’s top agents.

“My real es­tate men­tor, Mat Stein­wede, he was my in­spi­ra­tion when start­ing in real es­tate and he did a cam­paign sim­i­lar to this years ago,” Mr Latham said.

“I al­ways thought that once I had grown my busi­ness to where I wanted it, I’d like to pinch his idea and take it to the next level.

“The web­site breaks down bar­ri­ers of be­ing agent and in­tro­duces me as a real per­son to po­ten­tial clients, tells them about me, who I am and what I am about, and how we op­er­ate as a busi­ness.

“On the web­site there is help for buy­ers and sellers, tips about real es­tate, how to get the best price, tips on how to pre­pare their prop­erty for sale, rec­om­men­da­tions of what to do be­fore they put it on the mar­ket, as well as a run­ning cross sheet of what we are do, and how many homes we are selling.

“Also, when peo­ple read a tes­ti­mo­nial we felt it didn’t have enough im­pact, so we got video tes­ti­mo­ni­als which we’ve up­loaded on a web­site to cre­ate some va­lid­ity about it.”

Mr Latham said the cam­paign had al­ready at­tracted a lot of at­ten­tion, with peo­ple tak­ing photos of his num­ber­plates and send­ing in emails and mas­sages.

As well as the pop­u­lar num­ber­plate and bus seat advertising, Mr Latham said a cru­cial part of mak­ing the cam­paign a suc­cess of an advertising pres­ence in The Week­end Post.

“I needed the right ex­po­sure to get it out there,” he said.

“To catch the most fish you need to fish where the fish are, and ma­jor­ity of buy­ers and po­ten­tial sellers get The Cairns Post real es­tate guide, which in my opin­ion is still the ‘buyer’s bi­ble’.

“The re­sponse has been great; peo­ple send me mes­sages and emails and make com­ments about the num­ber­plate, say­ing it’s a great ini­tia­tive and idea, some­thing orig­i­nal.”

I wanted some­thing unique, some­thing to be a mo­bile bill­board, but with­out plas­ter­ing my name and face all over the car.

Karl Latham

Pic­ture: JUSTIN BRIERTY

IDEN­TITY OUT: Elite Cairns real es­tate agent Karl Latham with his "Whykarl.com" per­son­alised num­ber­plates, with “www.” and “.com” stick­ers ei­ther side.

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