Wednesday, May 27, 2015

What Impacts the Health of the Rural Land Market?

I recently participated in a survey conducted by LandThink,  The Survey asked: In your opinion, which factor has the largest impact on the overall health of the rural land market?  LandThink brings together the various components of the land industry and provides knowledge and information to land investors, owners and professionals to create a stronger land marketplace. I wanted to share these important results with you.

An overwhelming majority, 35.11% of respondents think the overall economy has the largest impact on the overall health of the rural land market.

In a strong second place, many in the LandThink audience (19.86%) thought that commodity prices had the largest impact on the rural land market. The price of corn, wheat and soy beans affect land prices. In my judgment, if the survey was limited to those brokers and buyers in the ‘bread basket’ that would have been the overwhelming majority answer, however respondents deal with farms, timberland, recreational and other land uses across the country.

In all honesty, I selected ‘other’ and here is why. My preference would have been ‘consumer confidence’. I believe consumer confidence is a composite number that represents not only the overall economy but also the stock market, interest rates and other factors. If you are confident on your career, feel that borrowing is affordable and see year over year increases in your 401K or IRA, you are more likely to buy LAND.

If you would like to see my listings, visit  If you have questions about selling or buying LAND, contact G. Kent Morris, ALC, RF @ 706.457.0090

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Technologies Your 'Land Broker' Should Be Using

This blog post is geared toward the land broker, but it is important to you the landowner as well. If your broker has not incorporated  these technologies into their business, you are using the wrong broker. The days of putting up a sign and perhaps running a newspaper ad are long gone!

1. Give visitors a nice looking and user-friendly website.
More than ever before, your website is your storefront, it represents you, your skills, abilities and what you bring to the table. The visitor must like your site or you will probably not hear from them.  The client or customer has probably already been on your website by the time they have called you. It must be nice to look at and easy to navigate through.

2. Incorporate social media in your marketing plan.
This is huge. I recently participated in a teleconference related to generational trends of buyers and social media has become an important part of everyday life for the Boomers, Gen X, Gen Y or the Millennials. Not surprisingly, more and more well educated and affluent people are regularly using Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Google+. Since they are spending more time on these social media sites, it only makes sense that we should all be using them to promote our brands, services and listings.  You as the client should demand this!

3. Continually improve Search Engine Optimization.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the standard for marketing a website today. This is how a user will find your website and you! It is the relationship between keywords used and link to your website by a search engine such as Google. It is important to use good keywords and they have to be integrated into your site.

4. Get your listings on the national marketing sites.
Over 1/3 of buyers start their search on a ‘land listing’ website. There are many sites to choose from, for example,, and  The buyers are probably not local. They might live out of county or state. Newspaper ads simply do not work anymore. See the following chart to see how buyers search for land.

(Survey conducted by LandThink)

As you can see, most buyers start their search on the web!

5. Develop an email marketing strategy.
One of the most effective tools for brokers are emails. An email blast is simply sending out an email or brochure about a listing to hundreds or thousands of realtors, clients or others at the push of a button. The email will contain facts about the property, price, pictures and even links to websites. This is a cheap method to reach lots of people. I am currently using Mail Chimp. There are other products out there like Constant Contact.

To see my listings visit Buying or Selling Land? Contact G. Kent Morris, RF, ALC  at 706.457.0090

Friday, May 1, 2015

Real Estate Marketing

My blog is generally more geared to land and forestry. However I am in the business of listing and selling real estate, particularly land brokerage.  Therefore I am constantly researching topics related to the latest technology and marketing techniques. I have this responsibility to my clients. You stay ahead of the crowd or you fall behind! Recently I attended an online class related to 'real estate marketing'. The number one thing that draws attention to a property is………pictures. You know “A picture is worth a thousand words”. It helps people connect with a property before actually getting their feet on the ground. If you don’t have inviting pictures, you may not get any inquiries on the property. The second most important piece of data we realtors furnish is a ‘detailed description about the property’.  Information about the number of acres, acres in pasture, acres in woods, type and quality of the timber, presence of streams, ponds and lake are all important. The buyer may want to know about the access, proximity to town or other facts. NOW, here is the part that caught me by surprise, the third most important thing we can provide is VIDEO.  56% of online traffic is watching video. See the following chart!

The use of the web as a percent of total internet use is actually decreasing. P2P (Peer to Peer) is social networking like Facebook or Twitter is on the increase. Look at the 2 purple sections at the top, that is the video portion and it is growing exponentially. In summary, web use is decreasing, social networking and videos are on the increase!

The other thing of interest is the traffic by device. Look at the following picture. The Apple devices (iPhone and iPad) seem to have a huge portion of that market. People can access any and all information on the go with their mobile device!

Well, I got to go! Looks like I need to shoot some more videos!!

To see my listings go to Buying or Selling Land?  Contact G. Kent Morris, ALC, RF         at      (706) 457-0090