How to sell Cleveland? Tell the truth!

Posted by The Lohser Group Cleveland on Monday, September 13th, 2010 at 11:39am.

I was sitting in one of the upper floors of the Terminal Tower the other day discussing "Cleveland's Image," with some people who's job it is to decide how that image is and will be portrayed in the coming year.

How do we sell this city?  This question has come up over in Cleveland by its leadership.  When I am consulted on this topic I keep telling people the same thing but I am still waiting for someone to listen.  You can't sell someone on investing in real estate in a particular area or market with some gimmicky add campaign.  Buying a home is not like buying a candy bar or a time share. 

Unlike those other things, you simply can't sell a home buyer, you can only share information about a property and take them to it. If the house is not right for them, they will quickly tell you, if it is the house for them, you won't need to sell it because you will see it instantly in their eyes. 

"Selling the City," is exactly the same.  You can't fool people with pretty adds and heart-warming testimonials.  They want the truth, they want facts and data about the city so they can judge for themselves whether or not the house they love today will be worth more or less tomorrow.  

From the new casinos to the Medical Mart getting leases on all of its permanent showcase space, to Rosetta Stone opening headquarters here, news that means jobs and traffic usually means good things for a city's real estate value.  So why not market these stories more?

I know I will get in trouble for this but what does "CLEVELAND+" mean and why would it make me want to move to Cleveland?

To those of you marketing this city, please put yourself in the shoes of the would be buyer.  What would make you feel comfortable about making the leap and investing and living in the city?  For me, its easy, I want to go where the upside is high and the cost is low.  With the tax abatements and financing incentives, we have taken care of one part, the other part is easy, don't over think it.  You don't need to come up with a marketing slogan, you simply need to show the reality of the progress this city is making. 

If you share it....They will come.

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