Automatic Ad Writing: A Formula for Creativity

This Web-based service churns your listing details into snappy ad copy.

October 1, 2006

Writing descriptive copy about your listings for newspaper ads is a tough job, and one that most real estate practitioners aren’t very passionate about. Even if we pour our heart into to pounding out words that readers will respond to, it’s easy to feel like we’re simply not doing a very good job.

Could it be easier than we’re making it? Of course it can. Any professional copywriter will tell you there’s a formula to crafting unique, engaging ad prose that will rise above the drone of ho-hum copy. And now this process is no longer locked inside the brains of wordsmiths.

Like many tasks that are based on a formula, creative ad writing can be automated using special software. In this column I’ll explain a new Web-based service that does all the work of coming up with grabber headlines and engaging copy — allowing you to move on to more important things like prospecting for new clients.

All You Need Is Property Data

The new service, WriteMyAds.com, does just what its name says. Here’s how it works: You enter data about the listing’s particulars (type of property, architectural style, number of bedrooms, location, layout, etc.) through a series of 10 screens that provide drop-down menus choices. This process takes about five minutes.

Next, you click on the “Write My Ads” button, which creates six suggested ads that incorporate your listing’s features into unique and engaging ad copy that’s designed to sell consumers on the benefits of living there.

You can instantly make the suggested copy longer or shorter, or you can click a button to see six more possibilities. You also can tweak your listing’s features so the ads come out completely different. An ad-writing demonstration on the company’s Web site walks you through the process.

Because there are so many features you can identify for your listing, you don’t have to worry about seeing a duplicate ad created for someone else’s listing using the same service, say the folks at WriteMyAds.com. Here’s an example of an ad the service created for a small two-bedroom condominium:

Grab Some Family Time

Start each morning together around the breakfast bar in this 1000-SF brick condo in Old Irving Park. Has 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, fashionable living room with wood floors, dining room, laundry with w/d included, open kitchen with granite countertops, bonus room, home office for homework. $320,000. Please call John Smith for more information.

How Much Does It Cost?

The service is currently priced at $10 per month, which includes unlimited use of the Web site. As part of that price, you also can use an online ad management system – with upgrades for an extra cost. This is what you get for the standard fee:

  • Listing Management. You can keep track of all your listing details and upload unlimited photos (photo upload is an additional $75/yr option).
  • Advertisement Management. Organize your ads by listing, publication, and publication date. It also tracks the ad approval process.
  • Publication Management. Keep track of all the real estate publications and newspapers within a 200 mile radius of your office. If a local publication doesn’t appear in the Web site’s database, you can add it to the list.

For something as important as advertising, it makes sense to have a professional do the work. This new service is a way to get around paying someone top dollar to write ads, while still turning out impressive work for every listing.

Michael Russer, a.k.a. Mr. Internet®, is CEO of Russer Communications. He is a leading speaker and author in the real estate industry and has been writing about Internet marketing and virtual outsourcing since the dawn of the commercial Internet.

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