Developers Resort to Spam to Lure Buyers
Many spam recipients said they believe that stagnant real estate markets around the country have led developers and their marketing staffs to launch the nettlesome mobile campaigns.
Only 268 residential apartments were sold from Oct 1 to 3 in Beijing, a 31 percent decrease from a year ago, official statistics show.
Developers in Nanjing, Jiangsu province, admitted it was embarrassing to see so few people come to their display hall, let alone make a purchase, in September, a traditional golden season for the real estate industry, according to Xinhua News Agency.
Their counterparts in Taiyuan, North China's Shanxi province, even used movie tickets to try to lure buyers to their display hall during the National Day holiday, the report said.
"The market remains grim, so they (developers) come to me," a salesman for a Beijing-based online marketing company told China Daily. He would not give his name.
"Not long ago a famous villa developer in Beijing employed my company to send as many as eight million text messages to potential buyers, most of whom are rich people," he said, boasting that he charges a "reasonable" 0.03 yuan (half a cent) for each short message.
Some real estate information providers, including soufun.com and sina.com.cn, also are involved in the lucrative service for developers.
"We have a data pool of potential homebuyers in our system," said an insider who has worked at Soufun and Sina's real estate channel and who spoke on the condition of anonymity.
"After a developer bought advertisement on our websites, we would compliment them with a free service of sending a certain number of text messages to their target buyers."
She herself is a victim of spam.
"I've seen seven text messages crashing into my mobile phone in succession. That day was a sunny Saturday, and it was ruined by those detestable spam."
Source: China Daily