Sotheby’s Director of Rural services David Medina has revealed the benefits of a multi-channel marketing campaign, and how they secured the historic Hanworth Homestead for the perfect buyer.
When David Medina takes a prestige rural property to market, he does it with one clear ethos in mind – leave no stone unturned in the search for the perfect buyer.
On the surface, it’s a simple approach, but underneath there are many intricate layers working together to get the best result for his vendors.
Not only does David, who is Sotheby’s Director of Rural Services, have to list the properties, he needs to market them using the right channels to ensure the ideal buyers see and fall in love with the property.
David said the sale of Historic Hanworth Homestead, at Bannaby in the NSW Southern Tablelands, at the start of the year is the ideal example of all of the intricate components falling into place perfectly.
In particular, he said the marketing campaign showed the property in its best light to high-end buyers Australia-wide and internationally through the use of print and digital mediums, including social media advertising, Google Search ads and print coverage in multiple newspapers.
“There was a wide gamut of people, right across the eastern seaboard to overseas ex-pats, that saw it and inquired,” David said.
“The reach we got was outstanding.”
List the property
David said long-term relationships with his clients first saw him list Hanworth Station, all 6675 acres of it, including the homestead, in late 2019 and sell it to a second client in an off-market deal.
The purchaser then sold off the land, which comprised about 80 titles, and gave David the homestead on about 330 acres to sell a second time.
“It suited the Sotheby’s brand well,” he said.
“They said, ‘Here’s an advertising budget, you do what you need to do with it to get it (the homestead) where you need it to go’.”
Marketing the property
David believed Hanworth Homestead was a unique property that needed a dedicated marketing campaign to match.
The peaceful and private property a little over two hours from Sydney featured a grand four-bedroom home, established gardens, a stunning swimming pool, shearing shed, shearers quarters with guest bedrooms, a tennis court and even a helipad and hangar.
With COVID-19 prompting many city dwellers to head bush, David said the key to marketing Hanworth Homestead was to pitch it to a high net worth audience looking for a tree-change or a weekender.
He engaged News Corp Australia to run a print marketing campaign with double-page spreads in the Wentworth Courier and the Mosman Daily, as well as quarter-page ads in The Daily Telegraph.
Digitally, David used the News Xtend Property Marketing Prestige Silver campaign, which harnessed the power of social media advertising, display advertising across the News Corp Australia and Google Display networks, Google Search ads and a dedicated, unique property website.
“I wanted to send the one message via a number of different mediums,” David said.
“I wouldn’t suggest a single campaign where it is just digital, or it is just print.
“It needs to be both because at the end of the campaign, we wanted to know that we’d maximised everything, and we had left no stone unturned in finding the right buyer for our vendors.”
The print campaign
David said the print marketing campaign used large format print ads with stunning photography to showcase Hanworth Homestead as a lifestyle property to buyers looking to escape the city.
The Mosman Daily and the Wentworth Courier were selected for their presence in Sydney’s affluent eastern and lower north shore suburbs.
The Daily Telegraph put the property in front of buyers across NSW.
“It gives rural people with the Sotheby’s brand the opportunity to showcase their wonderful properties in publications that are the bible and that are very well-read,” Peter said.
“The vendors that I deal with are looking for broader scope, and they’re looking to access the high-end market.
“So using those publications, where people are looking to add an acquisition to their portfolio, a farm to their portfolio or to buy a weekender is important.
“The reach you get with that is beyond reproach.”
The digital campaign
David is the first to admit he struggles to attach a PDF to an email, but he knows digital marketing is essential to reach a worldwide audience.
He loves that the advertising package he used was done in direct consultation with him but took all of the hard work off his hands.
The social media advertising targeted local, interstate and international buyers on Facebook and Instagram, while display advertising ran on News Corp Australia’s news and lifestyle websites, including The Australian and Vogue Living.
Google Search Ads ensured buyers found the property when typing in relevant search terms, and all ads pointed back to a website dedicated to Hanworth Homestead.
The website featured Sotheby’s branding and had a unique URL the agent and the vendor chose, which for Hanworth Homestead was historichanworthhouse.com.
“You’ve got to take a holistic approach these days,” David said.
“It’s not a local market anymore; you’re playing in a global market.”
David said using social media marketing in conjunction with the print campaign got Hanworth Homestead into buyers’ pockets and living rooms quickly and in an all-encompassing fashion.
“When you track where the clicks came from, it’s really interesting,” he said.
“It’s from mobile phones and iPads where people are checking into their live feeds all the time.
“Then they’re sharing it and referring their friends.”
David said interest in Hanworth Homestead came from far and wide, including Hong Kong and Singapore as well as Sydney and other areas of Australia.
“We had very strong international interest, including people who sent their parents or associates to look at the property on their behalf,” he said.
The eventual buyer came from the Sutherland Shire and just happened to be a connection of David’s, who spotted the property in the Wentworth Courier and got in contact.
“I think they will use it predominantly as their getaway property,” David said.
David said other benefits to come from the campaign include broadening the awareness of the Sotheby’s brand, with many vendors reaching out to David to sell their property.
He said buyers have also come to him to help them find a prestige rural property after seeing the Hanworth Homestead marketing.
“It’s generated continual conversations, and I’m all about having conversations,” David said.
“If you have enough conversations with enough people and you find out what people want, then everything flows from there.”