Do you want to get the most out of your Real Estate Marketing? There are many tactics available for Realtors and it can be hard to know how to prioritize them. We’ve narrowed the list to 5 powerful ways to successfully market your listings and your brand!
1) Get your digital home base in order
Before you do anything else, get your digital home base in order, Your Website. Your website should be your priority and all of your marketing efforts should ultimately drive traffic there so you will need it to be up-to-date, polished, and professional.
Your website is your brand, a chance to show your personality and to market yourself and your properties. When a potential client reaches your site, you want them to be drawn in and stay there. How do you do that? Here are a few tips:
- Make it easily navigable - You could have the best properties around but that won’t to your potential buyer won't be any good if they can’t find them! Keep your site clean and with obvious calls to action. Make your menu clear and simple and don’t add unnecessary choices. Ask yourself: When people come to my site, what are they looking for? Chances are they are looking to buy or sell a house so focus on making their search easy! It is also important to keep your contact information right up front - if someone has to search for it, they probably won’t.
- In real estate, photos are king! - Get a professional photographer for your properties (it is so worth it, view our latest post here on Why photography is a Realtor's secret weapon) and highlight a few on your home page. You don’t want it to overwhelm visitors so two or three photos of great properties front and center works really well. Don’t be afraid of white space on your page. Let the photos add visual interest and avoid distracting your site visitors with too many other images. For more information on photography in real estate, visit our blog post on Realtor's Secret Weapon!
- Don’t be afraid to get a little personal - People search for houses online but when they choose a Realtor, they want to know about you. Use the “About” page to introduce yourself and include a photo. People do want to know about your experience but they also want to know what they can expect if they meet you and choose you to represent them.
- Put pertinent information in a footer - There is a lot of information that you may want or need to put somewhere on your website - logos, licenses, mailing address, etc. This is where a footer comes in handy. It’s at the bottom so it is not intrusive, and it can be included on every page without being in the way. Bonus: information in a footer is great for SEO and makes you more likely to be found in a search!
2) Google adwords for your region
Now that you’ve got a rockin’ website, you need to get people there! Google Adwords is one of the best, and quickest ways, to drive traffic to your website. This is a pay-per-click service that allows you to run clickable ads for your business.
When people enter search terms in Google your business ad will appear on their sidebar and with one click, they are at your website! By choosing the right keywords AND including your region, for example “Vermont Real Estate” or “Aspen Vacation Homes,” you can narrow your audience and make sure your ad money is reaching the right people.
SEO through your website and social media engagement is important but can be a slow build. By using Google Adwords for your real estate marketing you can more quickly reach a targeted audience and drive clients with real potential to your website. A great benefit to Adwords is that it includes tools so you can measure the success of your marketing campaign. Unlike some other marketing techniques you can get a very accurate read on the success of your ad campaign and use that information to improve and tweak it for even greater results!
3) Email marketing to your sphere of influence
In a digital world of tweets, instant messages, and rapidly moving news feeds, email marketing is still very effective. Sending an interesting, newsworthy, and informational newsletter to your sphere of influence is a powerful real estate marketing tool. Why does it work?
People check their email throughout the day and you have a chance to land in their inbox! Most people like to look at houses; it’s hard to resist clicking on a photo of a great kitchen or beautiful front porch. Many people find their dream house when they’re not even looking and a targeted email newsletter is a way to get them interested!
Sign up with an email marketing service to get started, we’ve had success with Mailchimp but there are a lot of options out there. Many companies offer a free basic service that includes templates and tips on sending a great newsletter. You can also monitor your results by seeing the open rate as well as the number of people who clicked on links to your listings. Use these results and let sellers know that their home has been viewed!
Emails are also another great way get your brand and expertise out there. They can, and should, contain up-to-date listings, but they also let people know you are on top of your game with what’s going on in the market and in your area. Again, people are researching online but when choosing an agent, they want a personal connection. If you want to be known as an expert in your area, include local items in your email; a restaurant review, a list of great hardware stores or nurseries, a recommendation for a local contractor, etc. If you want people to list with you, they will know that you will be marketing their property through a variety of outlets and to a targeted audience.
We share step by step instructions for setting up an email marketing program here.
4) Postcards when you sell, postcards when you list
While most of this post focuses on digital marketing, we don’t want to leave out this classic and effective marketing tool. Postcards are fairly simple to produce and distribute at a relatively low-cost and people read them!
There are two great times to use a postcard campaign: when you sell a property in a given community and when you list a property in a given community. New listing postcards and recently sold postcards can provide a high return on investment when marketed correctly. Here are a few things to keep in mind when sending out a postcard.
- Design your postcard using your logo, font, and colors that are consistent with your brand. Put your personal photo on it and use both sides of the postcard!
- Include photos of recently listed and sold properties. This is great information for the potential buyer as it will give them a snapshot of home values in their area.
- Include a call to action and a specific message to the people in your targeted area. People do not want to read a generic real estate postcard, they want to know what is going on in their specific area and how it affects them.
- Be consistent with your mailings. One postcard is not as effective as multiple mailings to your target audience. You want to build credibility and familiarity with your potential clients.
5) Social Media Engagement
If you talk to anyone here at Breezy Hill Marketing, we will tell you social media was MADE for real estate marketing! Engaging on social media platforms is a solid way to drive traffic to your website, which should be your ultimate goal. Your website (the one that is in perfect order, remember step 1?) is where they can browse YOUR listings, and learn about YOU as a realtor.
Social media platforms are a great way to promote and sell your listings, grow your network, engage with your followers, and attract buyers and sellers. For a more in depth look at some specific social media platforms check out this post on Using Twitter For Real Estate, and this post on real estate and Facebook too! For now we will talk about engaging on social media platforms.
Why engage? - It is no secret that social media as a marketing tool is fantastic. Posting and tweeting your listings gets them seen by many and you can include photos and information that might not be shared in a postcard or newspaper ad. The important thing to remember when using social media as a marketing tool is that it works best when you treat it as a two way street.
When using a social media platform it is important that you like, comment, and share other members’ posts and don’t just publish your own. This works as a great marketing tool in two ways:
- Even if you have a lot of followers on Facebook, your posts will only be seen by a fraction of them. However, the more engagement a post gets, the more views it gets. If people comment on your post it is important to acknowledge that comment! This shows that you are engaged in your own social media presence and it will help get your post seen by more people. It may even start a conversation and draw more followers!
- When you like, comment,+1, share or retweet, your name appears! How easy is that? You are not only helping other business owners, but your name is popping up all over other people’s news feeds. This sort of engagement is a little more subtle but the ultimate goal is that when people think of real estate, your name will come to mind, so go ahead and like, share, comment and engage!
Realtor.com has a great article by Suzanne Roy with tips on how to get started with real estate social media, you can read it here: Realtor.com- 7 Tips.
Thanks for reading! What do you think are the most important steps for successful real estate marketing?