Zoocasa?

Zoocasa sounds like a new Wildlife Centre. African Lion Safari meets Great Wolf Lodge, a place where you can ride a roller coaster and see a zebra at the same time.

Well if you’ve heard the ads on the radio, then you will know that Zoocasa is not a Wildlife Centre (but that would be cool). Zoocasa is in the Real Estate business. Owned by Rogers Communications Inc.

The commercials feature bizarre characters. Astrid and Anton are a sleek, model-couple who dress all in black and speak with a German accent.  

Zoocasa_DesignersPoster_1315px

Stan and Sheila are a timid, shaky couple who seem nervous and unsure about speaking to the camera. 

To view the Stan and Sheila advertising masterpiece (and I use this term sarcastically), click here: http://rain43.com/work-items/zoocasa/

If you can’t be bothered, it goes something like this:

 

Voice Narrator: “Stan and Sheila were shy about finding a real estate agent but Zoocasa helped them find a top performer that really knew the area.”

Sheila (in a quiet unconfident tone): “We love our agent.”

Stan (looks like he’s zoned out): “Yeah..”

Sheila cuts him off: “Oh, we’re out of time. Next time.”

Then the tagline appears: Search all homes. Find top agents. Get cash back.

 

Alright… I have a Bachelor degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing. I also spent two years of my life working at an ad agency until I finally couldn’t take it anymore and quit to pursue a happier and more rewarding life.

Even with my background in business, marketing, and real estate, I STILL don’t understand what the point of Zoocasa is, and which demographic they are targeting. If their demographic is an average Real Estate Buyer, then why are they hiring actors who portray people in an insulting manner?

I think Zoocasa’s advertising is stupid. I don’t care for Zoocasa either.

Zoocasa is a Real Estate Brokerage with a search engine for properties listed in Canada, helping Buyers find Top Agents, and offering a cash rebate.

I think they are more of a lead generator for Realtors who can’t find clients on their own. In fact, I doubt they would be licensed as a Brokerage if it weren’t for the lawsuit between the Toronto Real Estate Board and the Competition Bureau, but that’s a story for another day.

Seriously. They don’t have a physical office and they don’t employ Realtors. What they do is accumulate the contact information of people who sign up, and then distribute that information to Realtors who work for other Brokerages (Re/Max, Royal LePage, Century 21, etc.).

If one of these leads turns out to be a serious one and it results in a sale, then Zoocasa takes a 35% cut of that Realtor’s commission. Of that 35%, they take 20% for themselves as profit and give 15% back to the lead as a cash rebate.

I do not think these are “actual” top Realtors, but maybe my definition of a top Realtor is not the same as Zoocasa’s definition.

A top Realtor, in my opinion, is one who is so good at what he does, that he or she doesn’t need to prospect, knock on doors, cold call, let alone give away 35% of their commission to a lead generating website to do one deal. I’m not saying there is anything wrong with cutting commissions, or giving back to the client. Sometimes it’s necessary. However, a top Realtor is skilled enough to negotiate a greater amount off the asking price, saving his client money from the top.

If a Realtor relies on a lead generator to earn a living, it’s likely because that Realtor doesn’t have their own clients, and/or their past clients don’t refer enough of their friends to that Realtor. Why not? Maybe it’s because the Realtor is not all that good at his job? Maybe that Realtor puts their own interests ahead of his clients? I don’t know… I’m just guessing here. If a Realtor can successfully keep their clients happy, then the Realtor will always end up with new business because his past clients will gladly refer new clients..

In my opinion, a top Realtor, is one that doesn’t chase clients, because clients come to him all on their own.

This is just what I believe. I want to be this kind of Realtor. This is why I personally would go out of my way, and make it my mission to make just one client so gosh-darn happy and confident at the end of the buying process. Maybe then my client will tell all of their friends about how awesome their Realtor is. That’s how business grows.

Let’s examine this tagline again: Search all homes. Find top agents. Get cash back.

I think Zoocasa is nothing more than a well designed website. Yes, you can search all homes. Yes, if you sign up and buy your house with one of their outsourced Realtors then you will get some cash back. However, I don’t necessarily think you will be working with a “top” Realtor and that might cost you in other ways.

In conclusion, don’t take me at my word if you don’t know me. Go out there, ask questions and find a top Realtor who can prove that they are a top Realtor. Talking to his past clients always helps.

 

Happy House Hunting!

 

THE PRECEDING COMMENTARY IS THE OPINION OF HANNA MACDONALD AND DOES NOT REPRESENT THE INTERESTS OR OPINIONS OF RIGHT AT HOME REALTY INC., BROKERAGE OR THE TORONTO REAL ESTATE BOARD. THEREFORE, RIGHT AT HOME REALTY AND THE TORONTO REAL ESTATE BOARD WILL NOT BE HELD RESPONSIBLE AND/OR LIABLE FOR ANY OF THE OPINIONS HEREIN.

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