Market Analysis – Opportunity

I’m Kevin Klages and welcome to part one of our Market Analysis series. Every time my team enter new market we start by analyzing the local market conditions, the competitors, the prospective clients and industry stakeholders. We’ll walk you through each of the local considerations we look at when entering a new market. Today I’m talking about opportunity. Specifically the opportunity for your real estate photography business. Below there is a link to the iGUIDE opportunity worksheet. This is what we use when we work with new iGUIDE pros to research their markets and build a roadmap for their success.

If I asked you right now how many homes were sold in your area last year could you tell me? You should be able to, and here’s why:  if you know how many homes were sold you know how much potential business is out there for you. With this information you can forecast your sales, your potential income and figure out how big a team you may need to capture all the business that’s available. Market opportunity information helps us set our goals make benchmarks and plan for our future business growth.

Do you know how many homes were sold each month in the past year?

Sales by month is important because it’ll show you the seasonality of your business. Since this is your income it’s important to know the seasonality so you can plan for when you’ll be busy, and plan for when you’ll be slow. You know when to focus on servicing clients, and when to focus on building new relationships as the market slows down.

Are agents required to enter room measurements and square footage calculations when they’re creating a new listing? This information is important to me is an iGUIDE professional because it takes my iGUIDE tool from a nice to have to a must-have. Mandatory room measurements and area calculations gives me an advantage over all the other photographers in my market. I know I need to focus my value proposition to highlight my room measurements my square footage numbers and my floor plans. Now, if you’re in a market where agents aren’t required to provide measurements or square footage numbers don’t worry, you still have a strong advantage. It’ll have a slightly different twist.

We know buyers want floor plans room measurements and floor area calculations. They’ve been telling us for years. Along with photos, these are some of the most important tools to them when searching for a new home.

So where do you get all this information?

The short answer is your local real estate Association and your local MLS service provider. Many of them have the sales information already available on their website through monthly housing releases or monthly housing stats reports. If not on their website, give them a call. You’re going to need to ask them about the listing requirements for room measurements and square footage calculations anyway, while you’re talking with them ask them if you could get access to their historic sales information for your area.

Understanding your market and your opportunity is the map for your business and your success. Again, I encourage you to take a look at our opportunity worksheet to start mapping out your success. This is the information that’s made us more successful, made many of our iGUIDE pros more successful and can make you more successful as well.

Market Analysis – Competition

In this video we are talking about competition. Every time we go into a new market, we start with a careful examination of existing local competitors looking at who’s there. Who’s successful and how they got to where they are?

The competition worksheet available for download is what we use when researching and documenting competitors in our markets.

Your competitors are the real estate photographers already competing in your area. When we look at the competition we focus on the four P’s: product, price, promotion, and place. Look at your competitors for the products they sell, the prices they charge, where and how they promote themselves, and where they actually sell their services.


Is my competition offering simple services like photo only, extra services like floor plans virtual tours and videos? Then you look at what the customers are buying. I’ll go to the national search sites, like Realtor and Zillow to see what agents in the market are actually buying and using.


The short answer is your local real estate Association and your local MLS service provider. Many of them have the sales information already available on their website through monthly housing releases or monthly housing stats reports. If not on their website, give them a call. You’re going to need to ask them about the listing requirements for room measurements and square footage calculations anyway, while you’re talking with them ask them if you could get access to their historic sales information for your area.


Focus on the competitions online presence. Look at how they’re talking to potential customers. Your new or potentially new client will probably go to your website or your Facebook page to find out a bit more about you. We know what they’re going to be looking at: what you offer, what you charge and the quality of your service? They’re also going to want to see who you’re already working with. Check out what they are offering, what they are charging and how does it work.


In real estate photography this means two things. Number one is: where are they servicing? Where is the course service area and do they travel? If they do travel, do they charge for it? Number two for place is ordering. Where do you go to order services? Do they have an online form? Do they have a phone number to call? How easy is the competition making it for clients to order from them?

If you go through the four P’s for a bunch of competitors you’ll get a pretty good idea for planning your own strategy.

As an iGUIDE Pro you’re creating the tools buyers are demanding and the tools agents want to be truly unique. You should be able to offer iGUIDE as a package at a fraction of the price of your competitors, because our system is so fast and efficient. Take the opportunity iGUIDE is giving you to be unique and stand out from your competition, to talk with prospective clients both online and in person.

Subscribe to our channel so we can let you know about the next iGUIDE Building Blocks video.

Market Analysis – Stakeholders

Welcome back to the iGUIDE Building Blocks channel. This week’s video talks about stakeholders. Your real estate photography business has a lot of different stakeholders: high producing real estate agents and teams your local real estate brokerages, your local real estate boards, associations and MLS’s, and your local real estate media.

There are the four groups of stakeholders I would focus on every time I open a new market.

High Producing Realtors/Teams

When Alex and I launched our first iGUIDE team in Kitchener-Waterloo, we set a goal for ourselves and I needed to figure out the best way to get there with the biggest bang for my buck and return on my time. I wanted to find the agents and teams who were selling the most number of homes. I created profiles for these agents and teams, including how many homes I thought they were selling a year. This became my target client list.

Before I began reaching out to this target list I’d invest some more time researching them. I learned what virtual tour, floor plan, and professional photo services they were already using. I looked at how these services were being used on their listings, on their website and on their social media. I identified key people within their office or team. Once I had my list and my background information was in place I was ready to begin reaching out.


The second important group of stakeholders is the brokerages. In most cases the brokerages weren’t directly our clients, but they were a big help in growing our business. There were important people to know within the brokerages; they provided access to the Realtors through office meetings, lunch and learns, breakfast sessions, sponsorships and special events. Each of these activities was a chance for us to get iGUIDE in front of a large group of potential clients all at once.

Local Associations, Boards, MLS

The third important stakeholder group is the local associations, boards and MLS’s. They won’t be your clients either, but they can help you grow your real estate photography business. They can provide access to agents through trade shows, sponsorship opportunities, education sessions, and presentations. As an iGUIDE Pro you could become your markets local measurement expert, sharing wisdom and theory around floor area calculations, room measurements, and floor plans. It’s important these organizations know who you are, and know what you do.

Local Media

The last important stakeholder group is the local media, specifically the media interested in reporting on real estate technology and small business. I wanted these organizations to know who we were, and what iGUIDE is.

Many of our iGUIDE pros have cloned these techniques with the same and often better results. Identifying and targeting important stakeholders has made us more successful in our markets, has made many iGUIDE pros more successful in their markets, and can help make you more successful in yours as well.

Download, take a look at our stakeholder worksheet and start your own list of target clients and important industry stakeholders.

Market Analysis – Pricing Strategy

For this Building Blocks episode I’m referring to the pricing and profit worksheet that we use with our new iGUIDE Pros. There are five sections to our pricing and profit worksheet: our pricing and profit summary, labor costs, service costs, hardware costs, and lastly, business targets.

Pricing & Profit Summary

To start I ask a few simple questions:

  • What do you charge for a 2500 square-foot home photo package? How many photos included?
  • How much time does your photographer spend traveling? Time spent shooting?
  • How much time is spent completing the job
Labor Costs

For the iGUIDE labor section we have a benchmark of 30 minutes shoot time and ten minutes post-production time. Travel is already covered with the photography and you should have little to no editing time for your typical properties.

Service Costs

Here I add in the iGUIDE processing fees, the photo editing costs, and any other direct costs like booking, scheduling, and invoicing.

Analyze Your Pricing

With all this information you can analyze the pricing program. Look at the photo package(s) first. Does the photographer compensation look attractive? Could I get entertain good photographers for this amount of money? If not, I start to adjust the compensation percentage until the dollars make more sense.

Then I look at the gross margin. Am I within the range of typical service companies? Once I’ve done that, I go back and I look at my competitions pricing: am I competitive with the businesses who have the clients that I want? If not, I start to play with my numbers until I have a package price that I can win business with, and margins I can be happy with.

Then I go back and I look at my competition’s pricing for similar services. If my prices are lower or significantly lower, right away, I’m happy because I’m hitting my profit dollar and margin goals.

Business Targets

I want to find out what profit goals you have and then I translate that into iGUIDE tours to see if this is achievable. Whether you’re just starting your real estate photography business or you’ve been at it for a while, a pricing and profit analysis is a great process to go through.

Download the pricing and profit worksheet below. There’s no doubt that this information can help make you more successful.

Market Analysis – Recap

The market analysis is for you to discover important information about your market that will help you grow your successful real estate photography and floor plan business.

We started the series by discussing opportunity. Our opportunity worksheet should have helped you understand the size and seasonality of your market to help you identify your market’s total potential and how your business for real estate photos, floor plans and 3D tours will fluctuate throughout the year.

You identified your local real estate associations and MLS providers – these are great resource teams for you and your business.  Specific to iGUIDE and measurement services, you found out requirements for room measurements and square footage calculations. If you offer iGUIDE measurement services and room measurements, and square footage numbers are required, you have a tremendous advantage to win new business.

Next, we went through competition. Knowing who your competitors are, what services they offer like real estate photos, 3D Virtual tours, and floor plans, what they charge, what makes them special, will all be useful when you’re trying to win new clients because those clients were likely using one of your competitors.

After competition, we went through local industry stakeholders. You’ve completed your target list of top agents and teams and you know this group represents the greatest opportunity for your real estate photography and floor plan business. You have a better chance of winning their business because you’ve researched them you know them you know what they’re doing today and how to do a better job for them tomorrow.

The last section under market analysis is the pricing and profit worksheet. For real estate photography businesses, pricing is a very important decision. Pricing is not something that should be decided on without careful consideration. A well-thought-out pricing program will help direct your go-to-market strategy and will help you with adding on staff as you grow your business.

I have no doubt all this information has made us more successful, has made our pros more successful, and can make you more successful as well. Thank you for your time and if you found this helpful, subscribe to our channel so we can let you know about our next iGUIDE Building Blocks video.

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