Multi-channel Campaigns: How Some Real Estate Agents Stand Out with Great Marketing
Real estate can be a challenging and demanding field, but also a rewarding one filled with ample opportunities for growth. While many other industries struggled to recruit and hire during the COVID pandemic, there was no shortage of people transitioning to the real estate industry. In fact, according to the National Association of Realtors, there was an all-time high number of real estate agents in the U.S in 2021. The career path is clearly booming – unfortunately, the number of available homes is not. Currently, the U.S. is facing a severe housing shortage with estimates claiming the U.S. is more than 3 million homes short of the demand.
With a surplus of real estate agents and a shortage of available homes, competition within the industry is fierce. Real estate agents, in order to succeed under current conditions, must find a way to stand out in a sea of hungry competitors. But how? The answer is all in powerful and effective marketing. Below are a series of both online and offline marketing strategies new and experienced realtors can utilize to ensure they do not drown in this sea.
Online: In a world encapsulated by technology, digital marketing is critical to success in any industry, especially real estate. Creating multiple online platforms and effective advertising is key to reaching potential buyers and keeping current ones up to date. Here are some of the many ways to expand your online presence as a real estate agent.
- Social media
In real estate, the most popular social media platforms are Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram so it is vital you create one of each. However, simply creating the page is not enough. You must keep your pages both active and appealing in order to best attract new clients and position yourself as a trustworthy and reliable choice. Consistently update your platforms with both changes to old listings and brand new ones, share relevant content with your followers, join local real estate Facebook groups, and reach out to new potential clients and help answer their questions. Keep your platform engaging and informative – buyers want to know they are choosing someone confident in their abilities and knowledgeable of the field.
- A strong website
The first step in many buyers' real estate journeys is scouring the internet to evaluate both properties and realtors in the area. By creating your own website for your business, you will be able to show potential buyers what you can bring to the table. In order to keep clients coming back to your website, it is important to regularly update your current listings and add new ones.
Beyond just showcasing the beautiful photos of the homes you are listing, it is important to keep your website up to date with local content including photos and information about the area you are selling. This can include pictures of the town’s popular attractions, listings of the great schools in the area, descriptions of the amenities they will receive if they choose to live in this neighborhood, etc. Remember, you are not just selling your clients a new home, but a new town to continue their life in.
With over 188 million viewers, Zillow is not only a perfect place for buyers to find new homes, but also for real estate agents to use as a marketing tool. Zillow Premier Agent gives you the ability to advertise yourself and your business right on their website. Although advertising on Zillow isn’t the cheapest option, it is important as it is the leading real estate and rental website in the U.S.
Email marketing is key to engaging both new and existing clients. The possibilities for what information you can distribute via email are endless but some ideas for possible strategies include sending out newsletters containing your new listings, emailing posts from your blog containing valuable information for new home buyers, sending our personalized emails to your clients on holidays and anniversaries, etc. Email marketing provides an easy way to show your clients you care not only about finding them their dream home, but also about them personally.
Offline: Although boosting online presence is critical, the importance of offline marketing cannot be glossed over. Digital marketing is immensely popular and often the first option many companies run to – but that may be its problem; it faces immense competition compared to alternative offline methods. Tons of real estate agents are jumping to social media or other online platforms to promote themselves, but boosting your offline presence in your community could be what sets you apart from the crowd. Below are some ways you can do this.
- Direct mail
Due to the popularity of digital platforms, direct mail is often overlooked in marketing campaigns. But it should not be. Direct mail is highly-targeted, allowing agents to reach specific buyers and sellers in their local community. It allows you to pinpoint your targeted audience using a variety of factors including, but not limited to, income, number of children, location, age, etc. Postcard marketing is more personal and trustworthy compared to digital ads, with far less competition for attention. So whether it's a postcard or community newsletter, direct mail is a valuable tool for your personal brand at the local level.
- Local sponsorships/partnerships Establishing relationships and connections with local organizations is a great way to build trust and awareness. Whether it's sponsoring local sports, teaming up with a local moving company, or getting a poster hung up in your neighborhood diner, getting your face and service out to prospective buyers increases the chances of future business relationships.
Real estate is a competitive field not just for agents, but also for buyers. Because of this, people want to choose the best, most reliable agent. To do this, buyers often turn to friends or family for recommendations. In fact, 41% of sellers using a real estate agent found the agent through a friend or family member. Social media is powerful, but even more so is word of mouth and strong recommendations from trusted friends and family. So, if you're not currently asking prior clients for referrals, consider adding a request in your next direct mail campaign.
So, if you are a real estate agent struggling to get your footing, remember the importance of multi-channel campaigns. Keeping both your offline and online platforms strong, relevant, and reliable is key to standing out in this competitive and booming industry.