Instagram is one of the most popular social media platforms for real estate agents.
At first, it might seem very similar to Facebook. In fact, Facebook owns the platform and has tweaked it for ease of use. Dig a little deeper, and you'll start to see many ways it offers unique value to real estate professionals ... and lets them do the same for their customers.
Social media is a double-edged sword, as any platform can be a time sink. But real estate agents coast to coast have found creative ways to get results from it. According to the National Association of Realtors, social media is the #1 source of high-quality real estate leads. And Instagram helps you find them.
How Instagram Can Help You Build the Real Estate Practice You Want
There are two main uses for Instagram in your digital marketing strategy:
Instagram is most effective when you do both. Few people follow a feed of just listings. Sprinkling other forms of content into the mix will help you take advantage of the network's impressive engagement rate, estimated at 15x more than Facebook and 20x more than Twitter.
Here are some ways to use Instagram to make real connections:
Get Social Media Credibility Without the Headache Using DeltaNET 6
Instagram is just one of the many social media platforms you can use to bring a steady stream of warm leads into your business. Social media marketing with DeltaNET 6, the all-in-one real estate solution, gets you there faster by leveraging the power of AI-driven automation.
Not only can you get more done in less time, but you'll be able to scale up social media communication no matter how large your audience grows. All along the way, it's easier than ever to maintain the speed, relevance, authenticity, and personalization your audience expects from a trusted real estate expert. Contact us to find out more or get started.
Agents and brokers around the country are casting wary eyes on Zillow's latest moves. The number of markets in which Zillow is buying and selling property continues to grow. In an industry that has seen more change in the last 24 months than virtually any other, it's fair to respond to all of this with a groan.
Maybe it feels like "one more thing" to navigate around — and a particularly big one, at that. But don't be discouraged.
Zillow is a large, highly visible platform, so it's easy to overestimate its power to "disrupt" the market. Across the U.S., buyers and sellers know Zillow as a convenient platform for finding and comparing properties. But rumors of the death of modern real estate have been greatly exaggerated.
Like any other company, Zillow relies on real estate agents to lead, negotiate, and finalize transactions. As the real estate equivalent of a big box store, it faces an uphill climb convincing buyers in particular that it is capable of delivering the high level of local expertise they need to make informed decisions.
And as a lumbering nationwide behemoth, its smaller competitors are more agile and adaptive.
If Zillow is in your market, you can compete with it. And if Zillow is not in your market yet, you can put in place the technology, processes, and branding you need to set a clear, stark choice before your leads: Local service tailored to your needs or a homogenized and impersonal experience.
Real estate isn't e-retail. It's about relationships. That's where local agents and brokers have — and always will have — a distinct advantage.
Six Ways to Adapt, Grow, and "Zillow-Proof" Your Business in 2021 and Beyond
Let's start with what's right at the epicenter of your locus of control: You. You are at the heart of every relationship you build, online and off. Those relationships, in turn, are among your best assets. Here are some of the top ways to strengthen your relationships, brand, and business:
The Right Technology Lets You Meet, Connect With, and Serve Your Clients at Scale
Zillow has the benefit of large amounts of real estate data. Yet, it's still not able to use that data as effectively as a small team or a single well-trained agent with the right technology in hand. All in all, there are many areas where it is weak. With the right tools, you can run rings around it.
DeltaNET 6 is the all-in-one solution designed from the ground up with real estate in mind. By providing complete visibility into all your prospect, lead, and customer relationships, you can personalize communications and follow up with pinpoint accuracy at just the right moment. Contact us to learn more or get started.
In this Tech Tuesday, Harley Wolfarth covers the various system notifications that the DeltaNET is capable of sending as well as how those notifications can be turned on or off.
Hello and welcome to Tech Tuesday, presented by Delta Media Group, where we think that Harley Quinn is just misunderstood. I mean, her heart's in the right place most of the time. So we really think she's good at heart. So today we are going to take a look at system notifications in the DeltaNET. Now, specifically, we are looking at notifications that the system will send out to you to give you information about various things or update you of various circumstances in the DeltaNET. Now, these are all the ones that can be switched on and off independently, so you can control what those are. And then we'll also take a look at some of the details about the information included in each of those types of system notifications.
So to be clear, we are not looking at like lead notifications exactly. That stuff's going to go to you no matter what, you don't want to turn off your lead notifications. But there are different settings where you can go in and control where those lead notifications go, things like that. And we do have videos that cover that piece. So today, like I said, we're just going to take a look at the system notifications themselves.
So first off, the easiest way to go in and control these system notifications is to do so from your profile page. So just click on your name up here in the top right. Click on profile. And that takes you to your profile page overall. Now I could just scroll down and find them and actually can see they're right there on my page, but I can also type in system notifications, or if I were to type in notifications, you can see that it narrows the whole page down to just this thing that I want to see.
So looking this over, the first thing you can do here is you can control where these system notifications go. So if you wanted these to go to an address that is different from what you have set up in your public email address, then you can add that address here. If you want it to go to multiple addresses, you can actually put multiple addresses here, separated by commas as well. So I could say email@example.com and then a comma, and then email firstname.lastname@example.org and onward. So if I want multiple people or five office assistants, anything like that, and I want them to get notifications of these emails, I can do that by just entering those into that field. Now keep in mind, they will go to those addresses instead of your public email address. So if I clear this out here, you can see it opens up my email address section again, and then right there is my public email address. So if there's nothing filled in here, that public email address is where those will go. So we'll go ahead and narrow that back down again.
Now as to the notifications themselves, you can see, we have a wide variety here. Now, your list might not look exactly the same as mine. It kind of depends on what features your company has turned on, and also your company admins have the ability to go in and switch off some of these different notifications on the admin side. And if they're switched off there, then the toggles won't show for you here. So just keep that in mind, as you look through these, or as you walk through these with me. But now we'll just run through each one and give you some details about what each one does.
So first we have the digest notification. This is a monthly notification email that provides various information about what happened in the DeltaNET or what the DeltaNET did, or what happened on your website the previous month. So it's actually looking at the previous calendar month whenever you receive one of these. The first thing it'll have is it includes an announcement section at the top. So if there's any kind of announcement to make, and really these would be announcements that Delta has created. So if there is one, it would include that at the top though, generally you won't see that section.
After that, it includes a notification about your newest leads. So this would be leads that came in the previous month. It includes information about customers that have logged in the previous month. Any customers that have created a saved search, any customers that the system suggests that you would follow up with, it'll include a section for that as well. It will include a section for listing performance. So if you've got any new listings a previous month, basically how those listings performed, and really it's looking at up to 20 of your active contingent or pending listings that are on the market, that were entered in the previous month or added to our system the previous month.
If you are running any ads through Adwizard, it will include information about those and not just what ads were created, but it'll actually include performance statistics there. So basically how those ads performed. It will include email statistics from My Customer for Life, e-cards and market watches. So basically how many of those have gone out on your behalf? How many of the agents ... Or not agents. But how many of the customers interacted with actually clicked through on to get into your website?
And lastly, it will include some new listing notification stats. So this would be specifically customer saved search emails. So if customers have gone to the website, saved a search, basically how many of those went through to your customers and the related stats? So how many were opened and how many click throughs there were just like the stats with My Customer for Life, e-card and MarketWatch. So this is kind of your big overall email. So once a month, you'll get one of these. As long as you have this toggled on, you'll get one of these that includes all of that information from all of those happenings in the previous calendar month.
Now the next one is the new listing tips email. So this will be triggered every time you add a new listing to the system. And basically it provides some suggestions about what to do with your new listing or features and things that you can do through the DeltaNET to help you market that listing. Specifically, it suggests that you set up seller report. It suggests the creation of an e-card, printable fliers, social media sharing. And if you or your company have properties in motion turned on, it'll give you some information about properties in motion related to that listing as well. Each one of those sections does include some information about that, as a link into the DeltaNET to kind of shortcut you into the correct page in the DeltaNET to set those things up.
So for example, creating an e-card, it includes a link that will actually pipe that listing information into the e-card system in the DeltaNET. So it takes you straight in there, and then you just select the template you want, and it'll show that listing information right there on the template. So just designed to be a nice time-saver for you to go in and do some quick marketing of your listing without having to put a whole lot of extra time or effort into that.
Now, the next thing we have here is the Adwizard notifications. So if this is turned on and you are using the Adwizard system, when you have a listing that is listing a notification that is about to run out, not a notification, I'll get there. When you have an ad through Adwizard that is about to expire, this system will notify you of that and give you the opportunity to click through, go back into Adwizard and renew that if you wanted to continue that ad. So that's what this one is for.
The next one is upcoming email digest. And this one has a nice convenient description right here below it. It will send you an email if there are any campaign emails, e-cards or email blasts that are scheduled to go out in the next three days. Now, the purpose of this is so that you can see these automated emails that are about to go out on your behalf. And then if you want to make changes to those at the last minute before they're actually sent, this gives you the opportunity to do so. So that's why it gives you that three day buffer there. So the idea is three days before, you'll get this email, you can go in and say, oh, well, I want to make some changes to this email or who the recipients are of it. It gives you a chance to do that.
The next one here is our daily digest email. So what this does is it sends you an email of any tasks or to-do's that you have in the system that are either past due, or will be due very soon. And you can also exclude the upcoming events. So if you just want to see the past due tasks or the currently due tasks, you can check that box and then you won't get tasks that are upcoming, that aren't for you to do yet. So that's the idea, just a quick notification to let you know there are things to take care of so that you can go in and take care of them.
And the next one we have here is company news. So what this one will do is if the company creates any news articles on the admin side of the DeltaNET, this thing will automatically send you an email and just let you know what those news articles are.
And next we have the weekly bounce report. And this one also has a nice description below it, but what this one comes down to is, as the system sends out a wide variety of email on your behalf, if it receives a bounce response from any of the customers that it sent an email to, it will add it to our bounce table and also add it to this report. Now, the idea is that if we send an email out to a customer and it does bounce, that's basically the customer's email host telling us that that customer can't receive email for some reason. If it is a permanent reason, like the account doesn't exist, it just classifies it as a bad email address, something like that. Then it'll send that response and will log it, and then add it to this email so that you can see and then go in and address any of those.
The idea is that you could use this report to go into the DeltaNET and either verify that these email addresses are correct, or whether or not they're correct, or you can go in and get a new email address for that customer if have sending email to their old address is starting to bounce.
And then lastly, we have the Dotloop import notification. So this one's very specific. It really only will exist to customers that the company has the Dotloop integration turned on. So if your company does use Dotloop for transaction information, and that integration is turned on, then what the system will do is automatically send you a note, if this is turned on, automatically send you a notification every time it does import customers or import transactions on your behalf. But this option will only be available if that integration is turned on for you, since it is an optional integration to begin with. Now, if it is turned on at the company level and you don't want to receive those notifications, then you can switch it off here. That is what this toggle is for.
So there you go. Now, keep in mind any change that you make here, you have to click this update notifications button down here at the bottom to actually save your changes. But this does allow you to turn off a wide variety or turn on a wide variety of different notifications that are all designed to give you more information about what the system is doing for you on one hand. And also what else you can do with the system that might not be immediately obvious to you.
So the only other thing to add here is that this is a dedicated interface to just look at these pieces. However, there is another page that you can go to in the DeltaNET that kind of consolidates these system notifications along with the lead notification settings for when you're actually getting notified of new leads and things coming into the system. Now, we do have another video to cover that, but to just show you where that's at, if I just type notification, if I could type the right letters here. Notifications up here, you can see there's a notifications settings link. I would just click that to go through to that overall notifications page, or I can click on the settings gear up here in the top and I can search for it on my settings page as well. So there you go. As always, if you have any questions, comments, concerns, feel free to send an email into email@example.com or give us a call and we will help you through whatever else you need. Thanks a lot.
A leading real estate brokerage in Southwest Florida generates nearly 200 visitors a month from a single blog post that provides reasons to move to the area. Another blog post filled with fun local facts from last April continues to drive nearly 100 visits to another Sunbelt-based brokerage.
So, what's their secret sauce? They are all benefiting from the value of coupling content with SEO. Content is a crucial component of any SEO program for real estate. By providing content that attracts traffic to their website and engages visitors, brokerages can leapfrog local competitors in traffic and lead generation. Without a complete SEO and content strategy, you miss out on driving more prospective local home sellers and buyers to your brokerage website.
That's why real estate brokerages benefit when they think like news veterans to drive more targeted and quality traffic to their websites. News publishers understand that nothing connects better to their audience than local news and information that provides value.
Avoid Being Yesterday's News
While you don't have a team of seasoned journalists who create content like big-time newspapers do, you can learn from how they do what they do.
About a third of all traffic to one of the country's largest-circulation newspaper websites comes from search traffic, according to Alexa. In addition, the paper's reader engagement is off the charts at more than double their competitor's average. So, it is clear that newspapers care deeply about SEO and the insights it provides.
For example, Search Engine Land notes that, often, data tools help shape editorial decisions. Newspapers closely monitor online reader behavior, which allows them to improve their content strategy, and, in turn, builds more trust with their readers.
Newspapers don't think about SEO as a one-hit-wonder for their sites. They know building trust with their readers takes time, and rather than try to sell to their customers, they focus on informing them. Today's newspaper world offers content that connects, and readers keep coming back for more.
Benefits of Content in Your Overall SEO Strategy
Google likes websites that offer new and engaging content. The more frequently your content is updated, the more Google crawls and indexes your website. As Google begins to see your website as being authoritative, your ranking in Google searches improves.
It's essential to provide fresh and frequent content that is distinct. Google does not like duplicative content. If you are repurposing the same content that Google is finding elsewhere, Google is less likely to come back and index your website. Google also will come back less frequently to a website when the content is stale. So you need to give search engines like Google something new to find.
Delta Media Group® regularly provides local content for brokerage websites that is distinct, with topics that spark curiosity to attract and then engage readers and helps ensure they spend more time on the broker's site. Examples of hyperlocal blog content include "Top 5 Picnic Spots in Dayton," "Pet Parks of Portland," "Best Bookstores in Boise," "7 Fun Facts About the French Quarter," and "9 Reasons to Move to Naples." These are the type of evergreen posts that can drive more traffic to a website for years.
In some larger markets, it is difficult for a brokerage to rank high in a Google search for a general home search, such as "Homes for sale in Miami." But by specifically building out hyperlocal blog content for these markets and optimizing these blogs for search, brokerages can increase their chances of ranking for the more competitive search phrases over time.
Delta also provides industry-leading SEO software that automates the process of optimizing a brokerage's website. As a result, it helps brokerage websites grow immensely, creating tens of thousands of pages from MLS listing data – content a brokerage otherwise would not have. Plus, Delta's software provides Google with clean, more descriptive URLs for each page it creates, making it easier to index.
This includes market landing pages, pages for local neighborhoods and subdivisions, school districts, brokerages, IDX listings results pages, and more — all optimized and updated for search engines automatically. Without this software, a brokerage would need a team of folks to manage this process. Combined with the regular blog posts Delta provides, there's always plenty of new content for Google to come back and index.
Right Time, Right Content
Real estate brokerages can leverage automation tools and deliver the right content to the right people at the right time. While you may not field a team of content creators like a major newspaper, the good news is that Delta Media already has one in place for you. Creating content of interest that is relevant and valued is what Delta does best, generating thousands of visitors to our brokerage clients' websites each month.
For example, manually creating and maintaining social media channels, email marketing campaigns, and a blog can be challenging. Many brokerages don't dedicate the resources needed for an effective content marketing strategy because it can be overwhelming and often not deliver a return on one's investment of time and money.
Delta Media Group helps brokerages overcome this hurdle by providing a robust content marketing strategy that leverages automated drip marketing email campaigns and social posting tools as well as hyperlocal blog content. Everything you do as a brokerage in leveraging content should be easy and help you better connect with the communities you serve. By delivering content that matters to your community, you can turn online prospects into closed transactions.
For example, in New Hampshire, a monthly email that targets 22,000 individuals showcasing new listings, price changes, and a real estate article generates 53% of their website traffic and 33% of their leads.
To drive more website traffic, major regional brokerages in North Carolina and Long Island, New York, deploy automated marketing tools, including Market Watch reports, new listing alerts, push notifications, and the My Customer For Life drip marketing email campaign. As much as 10% of their total traffic comes from these automated tools.
In fact, a brokerage can derive more than half of its website volume and a third of its leads from a well-crafted email campaign when the content is hyperlocal and seen as valuable. While the brokerage provides the content, the email goes out on behalf of agents to each agent's client and prospect database.
Agents benefit from this strategy, as they don't have to lift a finger to touch both past and potential clients. They appreciate their broker giving them this type of marketing support that helps them grow their business. Over the years, one broker's email campaign has built an almost cult-like following, with recipients looking forward to their weekly email blast.
Building Traffic and Leads
Real estate SEO is a lot different than how SEO works for most other industries. Regular SEO typically is trying to build and drive traffic to products or services that remain the same. In real estate SEO, the product — a property listing — is turning over all the time, and every new home listing is a new product. A lot of brokerages struggle with SEO for this reason.
But SEO done right can help brokerages dramatically increase traffic and generate more "ready to transact" leads. When compared with most other real estate marketing activities, SEO triumphs by delivering a stellar ROI, as it is one of the most profitable ways to market your brokerage website.
And SEO isn't just for national brokerages or ones with million-dollar marketing budgets. SEO is achievable for brokerages of all sizes. Best of all, the audiences you reach on your website with the right SEO program are buyers and sellers who are more likely to transact sooner rather than later.
Because Delta Media Group delivers the "under the hood" work that SEO requires, brokerages don't have to do the heavy lifting. As a leading real estate website and lead management developer, Delta has the programmers, system administrators, content creators, and web designers to help with the necessary website adjustments, maximizing the SEO of a brokerage site.
Delta works within your real estate website, including the back-end code, to make the necessary programming adjustments, helping brokerages avoid using the services of a third-party SEO company. In addition, copywriting is done by a team of professionals so that SEO-based content creation is by writers who include graduates from top journalism programs and many former professional journalists.
For SEO to remain effective, it also needs to be monitored and adjusted. Having a professional team that has your back gives brokerages peace of mind. Delta makes sure that your SEO investment continues to deliver traffic and leads through tracking and monitoring online behavior. As a result, brokerages get ongoing insight into their website traffic and lead generation because SEO transparency is paramount for its long-term success.
The Big Takeaway
It's a myth that SEO is only for the biggest brokerage firms, and SEO is anything but dead in real estate. The fact is SEO can provide one of the most significant returns on investment of any marketing expenditure by a brokerage.
The right SEO and content marketing strategy can be a brokerage's secret sauce for driving more traffic and building more leads. When a brokerage thinks like a publisher by delivering hyperlocal, relevant and timely content, they will drive more traffic to their website, generate more actionable leads, and delight their agents.
You're working too hard. But then, I don't have to tell you that, do I? What you might appreciate me telling you is that you don't have to.
Automation is taking over the world. You can use smart home products to turn on your coffee maker in the morning and turn on your bedroom lights when your alarm goes off. You can use your phone to wait on hold for you and have it ring when the other party picks up. Complaining about your phone bill has never been easier. So why not use that technology to help you maintain relationships with your customers too? Of course, there will always be the need for your personal touch here and there, but when it comes to informing your customers of new listings when they come on the market, keeping them up to date on market stats, and just generally staying in touch with relevant information and articles, save yourself the time and let the machine do it for you.
If you're just diving into the world of automating some of your marketing and customer communications, there are several features I can suggest that make it easy to get started. First, go turn on the Market Watch Report automation. It basically amounts to flipping a switch. Once activated, every customer that asks for information or a showing on your website will automatically have a Market Watch Report created based on the listing they made the request on. The system will then send them an email once a month with data related to that market.
E-card automations are equally simple. You can turn them on independently for new listings, open houses, and listings that have just sold. When you list a new property, schedule an open house, or sell a property, respectively, an e-card will be sent to whatever group of customers you choose. That means you can focus on that actual property listing while the system handles telling your customer database that it's on the market.
In addition to sending e-cards automatically when something happens with one of your listings, you can trigger e-cards on holidays or even customer-specific dates as well. We all love getting birthday and Christmas cards, but not everybody loves sending them. Even if you do, time is our most precious commodity, so free up as much as you can by having the DeltaNET® remember those dates and send them for you. The DeltaNET will remember, and can work with, some less obvious dates, too, as long as you enter them into your customers' accounts. Purchase anniversary? Sure, that one's easy. How about a wedding anniversary? It can handle that. Pet birthday? Now that's the fun one. You can bet that I'm going to remember the name of any real estate agent that sends me an e-card on my dog's birthday. I don't even know what day that is, so I'm impressed if you do (actually, you could probably just make up a date, and I'd believe you). Just being the name that pops into a person's head when they think about real estate is most of the battle, after all.
Another easy one is social posting automation. You can now have the DeltaNET automatically post your new listings, blog articles, customer reviews, market watches, recently sold listings, and about a half dozen other things to your social media accounts on your behalf. We're not just talking about Facebook, either. It can now post to LinkedIn, Instagram, and Twitter too. It's not always easy to maintain a social media presence, so the more of your posting that happens automatically, the better.
Some of the less obvious but equally easy to set up automations are the Behavioral Alerts. When activated, these will send an email or SMS message to your customers when they perform certain actions on your website. For example, if they visit your website for the first time in a couple of weeks, it can welcome them back. If they view enough properties on your website in a day, it can ask them if they need help. If they view the same property more than once, it can ask them if they'd like to get a showing scheduled.
The My Customer For Life system is another one that essentially just needs to be turned on with very little additional configuration. Just switch it on, set it to work on all new and existing customers, and let it run. It will send emails to your customers as frequently as weekly, though it can be configured to go out much less often, and the best part is that you don't even have to write the content for the articles it sends. We take care of all of that. It's even smart enough to keep track of which articles your customers click on when they get the email so that it can send them more similar articles each time it emails them. The result over time is that every customer receiving messages from your MCFL system gets a message that is uniquely catered to them. Simply getting your name in front of them is beneficial, but then associating your name with content they're really interested in, that isn't purely informational, like a saved search email, is that much more powerful when it comes to customer retention.
Those are just the automations that can be turned on with little to no actual configuration. They only scratch the surface of the automation tools available. You can also save searches for your customers (or they can save them on your website themselves) so that they're automatically notified when new listings they might like come on the market. It takes a little configuration to define precisely what your customer is looking for, but what's a prospective buyer more likely to respond to than an email telling them their dream house just came on the market?
Campaigns are another powerful tool to stay in touch, not only through email but via text message as well. Our prebuilt campaigns are often all you need, but if you want to go down the road of creating custom campaigns, you can really tailor the messaging in a way that speaks to customers based on how they came to know you or what they're looking for. You can segment customers into groups based on the general area they're interested in buying in, then add them to a campaign populated with messaging specific to that area. You can have a campaign pick up on the fact that the customer came into your database from a request they made on Zillow (it's a dirty word, I know, I'm sorry) and send them messages that are sensitive to that fact. You can even have a campaign that automatically sends only to customers that were added to your database because they signed on using Open House Connector at an open house you were hosting. It's not quite the same as a personal message sent directly to a prospect, but it's pretty close and, once you complete the initial configuration, you don't have to spend any time on it.
If you haven't gathered it yet, we're all about automation around here. The most important thing you can do in the name of customer retention is to make sure those you've worked with in the past don't forget about you. Sometimes, however, that can occasionally create a bit of a roadblock for growth. If you spend all your time trying to stay in touch with past clients, when will you prospect new ones? When will you pick up new listings, let alone market those listing and get them sold so that the current clients remain happy clients? The answer is automation. Not just form letters either, but real, intelligent automation. Form letters drive people to the 'unsubscribe' button. Automations that provide valuable, relevant, and even just interesting information drive people to become repeat customers.
It's easy to feel a little bit overwhelmed when you look at all of the marketing options for real estate agents, but becoming a marketing whiz is easier than you might think. All it takes is the integration of the right tools, the right tactics, and a dash of customization to make your marketing fit with your unique brand. There are even tools to automate some of the most important marketing tasks and free up more time without compromising on results. Get started with these tips to help you maximize your real estate marketing.
How to Use Social Media for Real Estate Marketing
Creating an active real estate social media presence is an excellent way to develop trust, share your expertise, connect with clients, and build valuable relationships. Social media is the perfect place to reach your target audience where they already work, play, and research businesses.
Turn Your Email Marketing into a Valuable Asset
Email marketing is one of the best ways to keep in touch with clients, get them the latest real estate news, and nurture leads until they become clients. Automated email marketing tools make it easier than ever to stay top of mind with clients.
Creating Content for Your Real Estate Business
Whether you're sending bulk emails, creating your real estate blog, or developing content that's ideal for sharing on social media, your real estate content is at the heart of your marketing efforts. Creative, innovative content makes it easy to share your expertise, highlight the markets where you sell homes, and provide valuable information to your clients.
You can invest time in creating your own unique content, take advantage of our custom content creation, or try a mix of both. And it's not just about the written word! Video content is more popular than ever because it's convenient for clients and the tools to create it are more widely available than ever before. Experiment with creating different types of content and discover what works best for your real estate business.
Ready to take your marketing to the next level? With so many people shopping for homes and searching for real estate agents online, now is the perfect time. Whether you're brand new to real estate marketing or an experienced pro looking to expand your reach, our team at Delta Media Group has the tools and expertise to help your business thrive.
Data is a big topic — not only in real estate but in every industry where digital technology offers insights.
Data can seem esoteric and opaque to gregarious, relationship-focused real estate professionals. But you don't have to be a data scientist to make sense of it all. Instead, you need the right tools to connect those figures with your business outcomes.
Data is crucial in real estate because, as in other selling professions, it provides an objective source of truth to fact-check expectations against results. When challenges arise, it's no longer necessary to fill in the blanks with "hunches" or "gut feelings."
Instead, you can know precisely where your limited time, energy, and budget are best spent.
That means you can continuously, consistently improve.
No single piece of data is a North Star. You'll need data from a variety of sources. Synthesizing them, you can create a total picture of your business. That leaves you with less ambiguity to navigate and a much shorter path to actionable plans.
Let's see how it all comes together.
The Biggest Types of Data You'll Use in Real Estate
It wasn't long ago when real estate agents had access to very little data. They would meet people, follow up, and track the outcomes of their conversations. Between encounters, however, the lead's mind was unknowable. Even if it seemed like leads were moving forward, it wasn't necessarily the case.
Then, as today, it could take weeks or months for a lead to dive into the market. There were few high-touch, low-effort ways of staying connected until that happened. Phone calls and in-person meetings were the norms. By comparison, today's leads provide an enormous amount of data.
That's just one area where data has clarified the picture. Let's zoom in on the crucial types of data that shape the real estate world:
Three Steps to Leverage Your Data for Greater Success
Ask data scientists and they'll tell you data is always increasing in two ways:
As time goes on, these effects increase and compound one another. Luckily, you don't have to worry about vast oceans of data. With sound processes, you'll stay laser-focused on finding and using the data most relevant to your prospects, leads, and customers. That, in turn, propels your business forward.
Delta Media Group helps you achieve repeatable, reliable marketing and growth through data. Contact us to find out more today.
In this video, Harley Wolfarth demonstrates how to install and sign into the DeltaNET native app for iOS and Android.
Don't let that headline fool you. Despite the title of it, my article for this issue of Real Estate Marketing and Technology doesn't focus simply on technology itself or what's available to you and your real estate company these days, but rather on the management of technology.
With so many options on the market and seemingly more appearing constantly, getting a handle on everything tech-related can be an occasionally daunting task. Try not to let it all overwhelm you. Putting all your tech-ducks in a row doesn't have to be a challenge, and, sometimes, it can even be a marker of your company's evolution.
So was the case with Delta Media Group®.
Twenty-one years ago, I was one of the primary software developers at Delta Media Group, a role I remained in even as my overall job with the company grew and I took on the position of President. Many of you can relate to this as you have grown your own business. At one point, in your yourself being active as a salesperson, accountant, secretary, and even janitor at times. Basically, you do what you have to do to make your business work, and I did the same at Delta.
However, as Delta continued to grow in size, I ultimately evolved into the role of CEO and Visionary of the company. From this perspective, I am still actively involved in the development of the products but at a much higher level. Needless to say, today, I no longer do any software coding.
I share all of this because, in the past two weeks, I found myself, as CEO and Visionary of Delta Media Group, playing with various aspects of our technology offerings. I wanted to personally experience our technology as a user and see if I felt that the technology was delivering what I thought it should be delivering or if things need to change in order to serve our clients better.
Using various aspects of DeltaNET® 6, just like any brokerage or sales associate would, I found myself with two persistent and prominent thoughts. The first is that I was amazed at how much functionality exists today in the system and how mature the technology is. The second is that there are some small things that needed to be addressed, in addition to the large things, that would make the experience so much better. By working my way through the tech, I noticed little things that could be improved, all of which could come together to create a much better product on a much larger scale. I was thinking of good to great and cool to amazing!
And, this brings me to the subject of this article: Getting the most out of your technology. I have a thought for you and a suggestion.
But first, in order to understand that thought and suggestion, I want to consider our approach to rolling out our technology. Today we spend time primarily doing two things for sales associates when we train them during our onboarding process.
The first thing we do is spend about 30 minutes getting them excited about their new technology stack. Most of this presentation centers around all of the cool things that are now available to them; from a CRM standpoint, from a marketing standpoint, from a social media standpoint, from videos to customizable flyers, and all the automations. None of this presentation is a "how-to" type of instructional session. Instead, it is full of visuals and focuses on running a business as a sales professional. It is as far away as possible from a presentation about technology because the sales associates are tired of hearing about technology. Instead, they want to know what they can do with it.
The second thing we do is spend about 30 minutes showing the sales associates how to customize all their settings and set up all their automations, so they are custom-tailored to each one of them. The whole idea is that sales associates today will spend about 30 minutes configuring all their "stuff," their "technology," and from that point forward, it is doing the work for them, saving them time, and helping them actually run their business.
The reason I outline this training is because this training has been massively accepted and endorsed by the sales associates since we implemented it about a year ago. They like it so much because it is all about their experience in their own business coupled with configuring the tools to do exactly what they want them to do for them. In addition, customizing the tools for their business allows sales associates to manage their technology without feeling as if they're stressing over it.
So, my overall thought for you is this: When was the last time you, personally, experienced the business side of your business? I'm talking about the experience of your customer, your sales associate. What would it be like to put yourself in their shoes for a moment? And what do they want when they use the technology your business offers?
I ask this because to get the most out of your technology, you have to make sure that your sales associates are able to do business in the most efficient manner possible, using the technology solutions being provided to them by you.
I would suggest that you need to do what I see most, if not all, of our large firms doing. They spend an extensive amount of time, generally on an annual basis, combing through their technology, cleaning it up, automating it, upgrading it, connecting it, and personalizing it to their market and their sales associates. Taking the time to truly examine your tech — and determine what else you need or what changes need to be made — is a crucial step in helping your business grow.
I suppose I will close this out by saying that while it's easy to see tech as a daunting foe, the purpose of good technology is to assist your day-to-day life. In business or otherwise. So, take a moment to look at it all from a different perspective. To consider what's working and what isn't and keep this in mind while you do; a little bit of advice I remember hearing from Zig Ziglar when I went to see him speak 20 years ago: Inspect what you expect.
Video is quickly taking over the internet, and the same can be said about real estate marketing!
Well over half of all internet traffic is now made up of video content. As more people gain access to unlimited smartphone data plans, that number continues to increase. The adoption of 5G internet will accelerate the trend even further as it becomes possible to stream video fast from almost anywhere.
Real estate pros would do well to get comfortable with the power of video — both in front of and behind the camera. Video is much more likely to be viewed, remembered, and shared than plain text content. And video has the unique power to build rapport and foster trust like nothing else out there.
Video for Listings Is King – But it's Only the Beginning
Nothing will ever replace real estate photography, but video is the next best thing to being there.
When video is used to enhance listings, it allows interested buyers to go from merely browsing to imagining everything a space has to offer their lifestyle. With context provided by your narration, they can engage all of their senses and envision their future in the home.
That said, real estate listings are just one of many places video can make a winning difference. When used as a central part of your overall marketing strategy, it helps you deliver high-quality, branded communications that leads and customers will really look forward to.
Let's consider some other great ways to use video in your real estate marketing:
You Don't Need to Reinvent the Wheel to Come to Grips with Video for Real Estate
Video can seem like an intimidating prospect, but it's fun and exciting when you get comfortable making them.
To seamlessly tap into the power of video, you need a nimble, high-performance center of excellence you can trust to remain stable and dependable. DeltaNET 6 is that solution for thousands of real estate professionals across the United States. It gets you rolling with video in minutes, not days or weeks.
Contact us to find out more or get started with the top all-in-one solution for real estate.
So many tasks, so little time. It can all feel a little overwhelming, especially as a new agent, and that's totally natural, but time management is ultimately a
skill that can be developed. Working on ways to use your time most effectively should be a top priority as you establish yourself in the real estate industry. The good news is that there are plenty of valuable tips and powerful tech tools to help you maximize your time — and reduce your stress level in the process.
Successful people in every industry feel the pressure of time management and have developed helpful techniques for getting the most out of each day. As a real estate agent, you should also have access to a variety of industry-specific tools that can help you save time without compromising on generating leads or growing your personal brand. Here, we're going to take a closer look at how you can do just that as a new real estate agent.
Set Goals and Block Out Time Each Day for Key Tasks
Setting goals is one of the most important things you can do as a new agent, both in terms of big-picture projects that help grow your career and smaller objectives that help you manage your time more efficiently each day. So, before the work week starts, take some time to lay out your goals for each day and block out time to complete the tasks that help you achieve those goals.
As a new agent, it can be very helpful to ask other more experienced agents on your team how they block out their time in order to get some guidelines for setting your own weekly schedule. See what works for them and learn how to incorporate their habits into your routine. Over time, you can adjust your schedule and learn how to block out time in a way that best suits your needs.
Learn How to Prioritize the Tasks That Matter Most Each Day
Within each day, it's important to prioritize the tasks that matter most. The Eisenhower Matrix, which is made up of four key categories, can help you prioritize tasks more effectively:
Urgent and Important Tasks
These are the most critical tasks within the matrix and should be your highest priority each day. If the urgent and important task is also unexpected, then you may have to move other items on your schedule in order to get it done right away.
Less Urgent but Important Tasks
These are the tasks that are important to your success, but don't face the same time crunch as urgent and important tasks. You will want to schedule time to get these tasks done within a specific time limit, but won't need to get to them right away.
Build Flexibility and Short Breaks Into Your Schedule
Building a schedule for each day is so important, but knowing how to adjust on the fly is also key to making the most of your time. Sometimes, tasks will take a little longer or shorter than expected, and that's okay! Part of time management is knowing that things won't always go perfectly and planning ahead by building some flexibility into your schedule.
While it may seem counterintuitive, building short breaks into your schedule can also help you be more productive in the long run. There are countless studies showing that, for many people, taking periodic, 10 to 15-minute breaks throughout the day can lead to better focus, more productivity, and less stress.
Choose the Right Real Estate CRM
The right real estate CRM — like DeltaNET® 6 — can literally save you hours each day and make it easier to earn new business in the process. Your CRM is a repository of information on all of your clients and leads, as well as a suite of tools that allows you to complete key tasks as efficiently as possible. Investing the necessary time upfront to learn how your CRM works and exploring all of its features will save you so much time in the long run.
How Automation Saves Tons of Time on Marketing, Outreach, and Lead Generation
Marketing automation is one of the biggest timesavers that your real estate CRM has to offer, and it's a great way to generate fresh leads. For example, an automated newsletter is an effective way to stay top of mind and deliver valuable content, while automated buyer/seller reports are powerful ways to keep clients updated on the latest trends. Features like My Customer for Life emails, available within DeltaNET 6, can also save you time each day while still providing content for your clients. But it's not just about automating the content you send out. Automated lead segmentation makes it easy to ensure that the right people are always getting the right content at the right time.
Make Sure You Have a Great Real Estate Website and Strong SEO
An attractive, easy-to-use, information-rich real estate website is a must-have for both time management and lead generation. Your website makes your job easier by organically attracting new leads, making it convenient for them to search for homes, and providing key information about the markets where you do business.
It's also the perfect place to showcase your real estate content, share social proof from satisfied clients, and integrate SEO to make sure you're generating as much organic traffic as possible. Local SEO is especially important in real estate because it helps you stand out in the markets where you do business, and Delta Media Group® prides itself on offering the best SEO on the market. With a great website that helps you accomplish so many important goals, you'll have more time free for other tasks throughout the day.
Use Paid, Targeted Advertising in the Right Places to Generate Quality Leads
Paid advertising is a powerful, time-saving way to boost your lead generation, especially when you're just getting established as an agent. Advertising in search engines can give your visibility a boost while you build up your SEO, and social media advertising is excellent for reaching specific demographics of real estate clients. Pay-per-click advertising is relatively easy to set up, with price points that can fit any budget. Even as your other lead generation channels grow, paid to advertise is a potent tool for supplementing them that won't take much time from your busy day.
Bottom Line: The Right Tech and Time Management Techniques Will Help You Thrive
So much of time management is about finding the right balance, learning tactics from more experienced agents, and experimenting to see what works best for you. In terms of technology, the best-performing agents tend to rely on many of the same tools in order to thrive. By taking the time to learn your technology and experiment with different time management techniques, you can find an overall time management strategy that allows you to fit everything into your busy day.
In this Tech Tuesday, Harley Wolfarth demonstrate how to add a custom image gallery to your custom pages.
In 2020, a survey by global consultancy KPMG revealed just over half of real estate firms surveyed had a digital strategy in place. Yet, the years since have seen an acceleration of technology's role in real estate, even the most informed analysts could not have predicted.
Factors are converging to make technology more prevalent:
As a whole, these three factors have created two big pressures on agencies and brokerages:
These concerns are understandable — especially in the era of rapid change and deep uncertainty we find ourselves in today. In the long run, however, real estate experts have much to gain and nothing to lose from embracing technology. While it can increase productivity, it can never replace the human touch.
Technology Facilitates What Real Estate Agents Do Best
The human factor has always been critical in real estate — and it always will be.
Whether you use an overflowing filing cabinet or a modern Customer Relationship Management suite for real estate, your goal is the same: Find good leads, reach out at the right times, and create a human connection. Relationships are built on trust, and that's what real estate success requires.
So, what's the real difference between the sleek CRM and the filing cabinet?
There are many, but they come down to three basics:
Use the Right Technology to Bring Stability to Your Business
Let's be real: We are all a bit exhausted of the pace of change since 2020. But rather than "disrupting" everything, the right technology anchors your business, so you have repeatable and reliable processes. That shortens the time it takes to build the practice you've always wanted. Contact us to learn more.
As a very visual, community-based social network, Instagram is one of the best places online to promote your real estate brand. Of course, that also means that there is plenty of competition for attention on Instagram, which is why it's so important to have a plan for earning new followers and generating meaningful engagement. Instagram hashtags are a great tool for accomplishing those goals, and using hashtags correctly can really help you jumpstart your social media presence.
What Are Instagram Hashtags?
Instagram hashtags are words, phrases, or even emojis preceded by the # symbol, which you will often see in the caption or comments of an Instagram post. They're used to categorize content, make it easier for users to find content that they're interested in, and help users discover new content that's relevant to them. When you click on an Instagram hashtag, you will be taken to a page that shows posts tagged with that hashtag, along with other information relevant to the hashtag. Users can also conduct hashtag searches in order to find more content that's related to their favorite hashtags.
Why Are Hashtags So Important to Real Estate Social Media Marketing?
Hashtags are important because they help you expand your reach and connect with people who aren't following you (yet) but may be interested in the content you have to offer. When an Instagram user clicks on or searches for a hashtag, they can easily find recent posts, top posts, and Stories connected to that hashtag. Instagram users can also choose to follow specific hashtags, so your post may appear in their feed even if they aren't following your account directly.
How Many Hashtags Should You Use for Instagram Posts?
The right number of hashtags can differ depending on what you're posting and what type of audience you're aiming to reach. Instagram also imposes limits for how many hashtags you can use on a regular post (30) or an Instagram Story (10).
No matter what hashtags you pick, focusing on quality over quantity is the way to go. Take some time to pick hashtags that are relevant to the post you're making, and avoid adding extra, unnecessary hashtags. In general, it's good to choose between five and 15 hashtags for each post, though it's okay to exceed that range as long as the hashtags are relevant to what you're posting.
What Are Some Common Mistakes to Avoid with Instagram Hashtags?
Using the same exact combination of hashtags too often can be counterproductive when you're trying to expand your reach and can also get you penalized by Instagram's algorithm. That being said, you will likely be using similar, real estate-related hashtags on different posts, and that's okay. Just avoid copying and pasting the same list of hashtags to every post, and look for opportunities to integrate new hashtags whenever possible.
Since creating hashtags often means mashing multiple words together, it's also important to make sure that you're not accidentally creating an offensive word or phrase when combining multiple words. We'll let you use your imagination, but there are plenty of examples out there of brands creating PR issues because they didn't check their hashtags carefully enough before posting.
Finally, try to avoid using hashtags that Instagram has banned. Often, Instagram bans hashtags that are associated with inappropriate content, even if the hashtag itself isn't an offensive phrase. So it's a good practice to check any hashtag you plan to post and make sure it hasn't been banned.
What Are Spammy Hashtags, and Why Should You Avoid Them?
Experienced Instagram users can spot spammy hashtags from a mile away and will often see your content as less valuable if you use these hashtags on your posts. Hashtags such as #like4like and #follow4follow are considered spammy because they don't generate any meaningful engagement. Use creative, descriptive, relevant hashtags instead, and you're more likely to attract followers who are interested in your real estate services.
How to Find Great Hashtags for Your Real Estate Social Media Posts
There are quite a few different ways to find new, engaging, relevant hashtags to use with your Instagram content, and it's worth exploring a variety of avenues in order to find the hashtags that resonate best with your audience:
SCOUTING THE COMPETITION
There's certainly no shame in taking a look at other successful real estate Instagram pages and identifying hashtags that may be appealing to your audience. While you don't want to copy a competitor's entire strategy, this is a reliable way to find new hashtags.
SCOUTING YOUR AUDIENCE
If you want to find out what types of hashtags your audience likes most, why not go straight to the source? Taking a look at the hashtags that followers who are interested in real estate are using gives you a window directly into the interests of your followers.
RELATED HASHTAG FEATURE
The related hashtag feature, which you can find near the top of any hashtag page, is a great way to find hashtags that are relevant to the ones that you're already using. This is an excellent tool for finding hashtags that are popular within different niches and discovering hashtags that you may not find in other places.
Hashtags to Try for Your Real Estate Business
• #realestate – A simple, useful hashtag to let people know what to expect from your content, but also very competitive because it's so broad.
• #justsold, #justlisted – Let your followers know when a home has successfully sold or when something new and exciting is
hitting the market.
• #hometype – Substitute any type of home architecture, like #victorian or #colonial, to reach followers who are searching for a specific type of home.
• #neighborhood/city + realestate – Combine a neighborhood or community name with phrases like "real estate" or "homes for sale" to highlight communities where your listings are located.
• #neighborhood, #lovewhereyoulive – Showcase the things that make the neighborhoods where you sell homes such unique places to live.
• #realestatehumor – Have something fun or silly to share? Use this hashtag to reach people who are looking for a real estate-related laugh.
• #starterhome, #dreamhome – Use these hashtags to reach followers who are looking for (or dreaming about) a home that suits specific needs.
The Bottom Line on Instagram Hashtags
Finding the right mix of Instagram hashtags to boost your social media takes some research and experimentation, but it's more than worth the effort. Hashtags make it so much easier to find new followers, connect with your audience, and expand the reach of your account with every post.
Lead management is crucial to moving your real estate business forward.
Every lead has their own story. Some are motivated to jump in and get involved with the market right away. Some want to "wait and see." But the vast majority are somewhere in between. It may take weeks or months for them to get started. Proper lead management ensures two things:
With a modern lead management strategy, no time is lost and continuing communication is seamless.
Customer Relationship Management for Real Estate Is Crucial to Staying Ahead of Your Leads
Customer Relationship Management refers to a software suite designed to provide complete visibility into leads and their activities. While CRM is common across many industries, especially in sales, only one CRM suite was built from the ground up with input from real estate pros across the United States: DeltaNET 6.
Following up is the name of the game in real estate. It wasn't that long ago when you had to plan out all of your outreach manually and hope your timing was right — not too much and not too little. These days, your CRM can keep track of lead behaviors and connect the dots so you know precisely when to follow up.
As a DeltaNET 6 user, you'll enjoy a number of other great features:
How to Organize Your Lead Management More Effectively
Lead generation and lead management go hand in hand. Providing excellent experiences that introduce leads to your brand will put them on a trajectory to work with you. This means publishing the right digital resources and making sure your offline efforts, such as in-person networking, benefit appropriately from them.
Here are some ways to do it:
Contact us to find out more about real estate lead management.