01 Oct What's good for Rupert… might be worth considering
Rupert Murdoch sees the future and it is in real estate.
His News Corporation publishing arm agreed on Tuesday to buy Move Inc., which operates of real estate listings websites. News Corporation paid just under a cool billion for the sites, $950 million in cash.
Why does the publisher see such a big opportunity?
“We intend to use our media platforms and compelling content to turbocharge traffic growth and create the most successful real estate website in the U.S,” said Robert J. Thomson, News Corporation’s chief executive, according to the New York Times account of the sale.
Can local publishers ever be able to recapture the glory days of supremacy in local real estate classifieds? Probably not. Virtually every Realtor has their own website that presents not only their listings, but also hooks into the local multiple listing service that displays every home offered for sale in any particular area.
That said if Rupert sees a billion dollar opportunity in marrying “compelling content” and real estate listings shouldn’t you consider it?
All of the local Realtor sites in your market combined do not generate the traffic that your newspaper site does. Your Realtors need you to amplify their message and drive traffic to their sites. You have an opportunity to dominate real estate once again by adding useful content for home buyers and sellers, combining that content with engaging native advertising sponsored by your Realtors and aggressively employing social media.
You can out Rupert, Rupert in the real estate game locally. With the home market on the rebound in most areas, this represents a huge and important opportunity for most local newspapers. The time to act is now.