Listing agents place ads for several reasons. First, they need to show the seller that they are doing something to sell their home. Second, by showing how much they advertise, they can also attract other individuals who are thinking of selling their homes.
They point to their ads to show their clients that they are aggressively marketing the property. When other home sellers constantly see ads from a particular Realtor, they are inclined to want to list with that Realtor, too. So even though the ads look like they are directed toward home buyers, they often have another purpose… to attract home sellers.
What sellers don’t normally realize is that a listing agent’s true marketing emphasis is directed toward other Realtors, not the general public. Their main goal is to convince the selling agents (buyer’s agents) to find buyers and make offers. This is a good thing because if you are selling a home, you want as many Realtors as possible bringing buyers around to take a look. Most of a listing agent’s marketing efforts toward other Realtors are invisible to the general public, but it is where an effective listing agent does a home seller the most good.
Additionally, many listing agents now have “teams.” One member of the team will probably be a licensed agent who acts in the way described just below:
Selling agents (buyer’s agents) do advertise homes for sale in order to attract buyers. Although the ads do market a specific property, they are mostly intended to attract buyers in general — not a buyer for that specific property. The agent would be happy if you did buy the property you called on, but it happens so rarely that they do not expect it.
What happens when you call on a real estate ad is that you often schedule an appointment to go look at the advertised home. While you are out looking at that home, you will probably want to look at others — so the agent will show you a few other homes, too. Eventually, you and the Realtor will zero in on what you need and like in the proper price range and you will make an offer.
That is how most buyers find their Realtor — by “accident.”