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December
8

As a real estate agent, people seek you out for your local expertise. They don't want just any agent. They get excited for someone who understands their unique needs and can answer their burning questions.

Most customers, especially first-time buyers, may have difficulty telling one agent from another. You can guide them on the right path through consistent, compelling marketing with a brand that stands out.

Your brand communicates your value in terms of four key elements:

  • What you do
  • Who you do it for
  • How you do it
  • Why you do it

When you have clarity on your brand, potential customers can tell exactly where you're coming from in a matter of minutes. No one starts out with their brand all figured out, but it's crucial to refine it as soon as possible. Once you are done learning the ropes in your first year, your branding should be a priority.

There's Never Been a Better Time to Revitalize Your Real Estate Brand

Having a brand means you're no longer trying to be everything to everyone. Instead, you zero in on the audience you consider to be your ideal customers. Rather than making it harder to fill your schedule, it becomes easier. You'll work with more clients who move your business forward and get more referrals.

No matter where you are in your real estate journey, it's not too late to boost your brand.

Defining Your Real Estate Brand From the Inside Out

To brand yourself, start with who you are and build out. Once you've defined your brand, you know exactly who you are addressing – the "what" and "how" derive from those facts. Since it gets easier to reality-check your marketing, you'll never waste time on things that don't fit your brand.

Here's how to take control of your message:

  • Decide Who You Want to Work With
    Like every piece of marketing collateral, every brand is for someone. Your brand will look very different if you are focused on first-time Millennial homebuyers compared to Boomers downsizing for retirement. Experience is your best guide in determining who you can serve best (and feel energized doing it.)

  • Build Resources with Them in Mind
    At this stage, many real estate agents write a buyer persona, a fictional character who represents their ideal client. They list all of their knowledge and assumptions about this kind of person based on actual feedback. Then, they create the right resources, like home financing information, to meet their needs.

  • Crystallize Your Promised Experience
    Even brands with wide appeal, like Coca-Cola, frame that appeal in terms of a single kind of experience. Think about 2-3 concrete things every customer can expect from you. Maybe you're a great listener or a terrific negotiator. The values suggested by the things you listed can become your brand's values.

  • Visualize Your Brand
    Visualizing a brand means connecting the things you just decided on into a complete, tangible picture. It includes everything the average person thinks of as branding: Picking colors, fonts, and a logo. All these elements must be consistent, and they must speak to the core customer from your buyer persona.

  • Your Real Estate Website Anchors Your Brand
    Your brand is inseparable from the content you publish. When your messaging is consistent with your brand promises, it'll ensure the right people can tell the difference between you and "all those other agents." Your real estate website is the centerpiece that brings it all together:

  • Import Your Brand Visualization Into Your Website
    Once you have a brand vision, you're more than halfway to bringing it to life. Professional website design ensures your branded fonts and colors are presented with a splash of style all your own. Be certain the property photography and stock images you choose reflect your ideal clientele.

  • Keep Your "Backstage" Tidy
    Much of what makes a website effective goes on behind the scenes and isn't visible to your visitors. Still, it's no less important. Reach out to the right experts to make sure your website is secure (using a recent SSL security certificate) and that pages load quickly, especially for smartphone users.

  • Craft Content that Reflects Your Brand
    Helpful, informative content is how you preview the value you have to offer to those who haven't even met you yet. Target burning questions you identified ("How do I get financing as a first-time buyer?" for example) and explain in your own words using blogs, video, or a combination of both.

  • Promote Yourself on Social Media
    Real estate agents have the greatest opportunity to transform social media followings into revenue. Be proactive about promoting yourself and your brand. Share positive reviews and video testimonials that demonstrate your brand is a tangible asset in your customers' corner.

Contact us to discover how marketing automation can lend greater consistency to your brand.

December
1

Founded nearly 50 years ago, Dickson Realty has elevated its way to the top of the real estate market in Northern Nevada and California. 

Established in Reno, Nevada, by Fianna Dickson in 1973, Dickson Realty is an innovator in the Western region. Rebecca Dickson, Fianna's daughter, now serves as one of the Broker/Owners and VP of the Luxury Division at Dickson Realty, following the path her mother began almost 50 years ago. Nearly all of the owners of Dickson Realty are family, and the family atmosphere transfers to the agents and employees of the company.

"Dickson Realty has been an innovative company from the beginning when it was founded by Fianna Dickson in 1973," says Andrew Reel, the VP of Marketing & Technology at Dickson Realty. "And this was a time when being a woman and owner of a real estate company was very innovative." 

Dickson Realty was also ahead of its time in selecting the Reno and Sparks region to lay its foundation. When they started their brokerage, those areas were nothing like what they are today. They have grown exponentially over the time Dickson Realty has been in business, which has lent itself well to the growth and expansion of the company. 

"As Reno and Sparks grew in population and size, the company expanded too, representing developers and builders of the most prestigious master-planned communities in Northern Nevada," says Reel.

After seeing such growth within the area, the company set out to expand again in the early 2000s, this time to Northern California. They set up offices in the mountain communities surrounding Lake Tahoe, as well as in the resort town of Truckee, California. 

"We now have over 325 agents in 10 offices spread throughout the Reno metropolitan area and Lake Tahoe," Reel continues, "And in California, we have offices in Truckee, Northstar, and Portola." 

Today, Dickson Realty helps residential and commercial buyers, sellers, and renters in Northern Nevada and California. The company also offers 1031 exchange services, instant offers, and bridge-buying services. 


An Elevated Experience For Clients 

The team at Dickson Realty knows that to best serve clients in any market, you need to be someone they can come to for information about the local market. So every agent at Dickson Realty is required to be knowledgeable about the area. 

Reel says, "We are the trusted advisor to our clients, and we are experts in the neighborhoods that we represent." 

Aside from being knowledgeable, one of the most important values at Dickson Realty is providing the highest level of service for their clients. And that means providing them with the best possible experience.

Reel says, "Our tagline is, 'Experience Elevated.' We realize that we can have top agents, we can have top staff, but really, the client experience needs to be elevated to a higher level and it needs to be seamless." 

Committed to Their Communities 

At Dickson Realty, they value the people and the businesses in every community they operate in and are committed to serving those communities as best as possible. And that doesn't stop at real estate transactions.

"We're committed to serving the communities in which we live and work," Reel continues, "And we give back. We put money and time into the initiatives that make our communities better." 

Due to this being such an essential part of their business, everyone at Dickson Realty is involved in serving their communities, and that includes partnering with, and attending events for, numerous local organizations.

"It's a safe bet to say that everyone at Dickson Realty is involved in serving our communities," says Reel. "The company owners, agents, and employees participate at every level of many organizations. From the board of directors of the Community Foundation of Northern Nevada to the restocking of supplies in the Grassroots Karma Box program — and our own Dickson Realty Community Fund  is yet another powerful demonstration of our civic devotion."

Being a leader in their community is such an integral component of the culture and the values that Dickson Realty represents, so they recruit agents who feel similarly. Reel says, "Since being involved in the communities that we serve is a core value, we recruit to that value."

Supporting the Well-Being of Every Agent 

With excellent leadership and an open-door policy coming from the brokers and owners, along with a support staff that's always ready to assist with any problem that comes their way, Dickson Realty shows us that supporting their agents is a top priority. 

"Dickson Realty has the deepest leadership and support bench in the region," remarks Reel. "The owners and brokers have a true open-door policy, and they are always available to support agents on their cell phones. Any agent can contact any broker for help or guidance. Any agent can also contact any of our support staff for help with market research, marketing of listings, or technology support." 

Along with continuous agent support, Dickson offers new hires the opportunity to participate in a mentorship program, one-on-one learning, and group skill-building sessions. When an agent joins the company they are enrolled in Dickson University, a six-week intensive that gives them all the information they need to be a successful member of the Dickson Realty team. 

"We're a learning organization,'' Reel continues, "In addition to our six-week intensive Dickson University for new agents, we have mentoring programs, ongoing classroom and one-on-one learning, and skill-building opportunities. So really, no other real estate company compares with the level of support that's available at Dickson Realty. All of these things work together to help us attract and retain the best agents." 

At Dickson Realty, they follow the Ninja Selling philosophy, which is a unique training system based around building relationships, listening to your customers, and helping them achieve their goals. Refreshers and continued courses on these philosophies are also available for agents. 

Reel says, "In 2000, we embraced the Ninja Selling philosophy and system. Every agent at Dickson Realty goes through a Ninja installation, and several of our agents have attended multiple installations or refreshers. We also coach our agents in weekly interactive meetings on the skills they need to attain mastery in the practice of real estate and mastery in their personal lives." 

Another way Dickson Realty supports its agents is by providing resources for their mental and physical health. They understand that the real estate business can be stressful, especially in times like these where inventory is low and interest rates are rising. And when business is booming, their busy schedules can cause them to neglect their well-being. 

"We're doubling down on the health of our agents," mentions Reel. "For the last two to three years, we've been so busy, and it's also been stressful. So now as the market is normalizing, we're recognizing that our agents are feeling it and we're there to support them." 

The culture at Dickson Realty is team-oriented, which means that the agents are there to offer support to one another. They understand that although real estate may be a competitive field, the way to stand out and be the best is by working together. 

Reel says, "We're a highly collaborative team at Dickson Realty. It's rare in any sales environment, which is competitive by nature. And our collaborative spirit sets us apart from our competitors."

 A Land of Luxury 

Covering a beautiful area with so many amazing luxury homes, it's no surprise that Dickson Realty has its own luxury division, and Dickson Luxury has several partnerships and affiliations, including Luxury Portfolio International®, a global network of over 200 independent brokerages that sells more luxury real estate than any other luxury real estate network. Dickson Realty is proud of where they stand and the progress they've made within that market over the years. 

"We're really proud of our leadership in the luxury real estate market, '' says Reel. "Our involvement with the region's master-planned communities began back in the mid-1980s and continues today. And it helps with our luxury experience and growth in luxury real estate marketing. We were one of the original firms in the '80s to join Great Estates, which later became Christie's Great Estates. And then since 2005, we've been affiliated with Leading Real Estate Companies of the World® and Luxury Portfolio International." 

Having been in the business of luxury for many years, Dickson Realty represents a significant portion of the luxury market share in the Reno-Sparks region. According to Reel, "Today, Dickson Realty represents nearly 45% of home sales over $2 million in the Reno-Sparks metropolitan area and 51% of home sales over $3 million." 

Their success in the luxury division can also be attributed to their marketing strategies, which they believe are key when it comes to marketing luxury homes. When speaking about these strategies, Reel says, "Dickson Realty is data-driven. They include a mix of print, digital search engine advertising, and targeted social media ads to areas where the luxury home buyers are coming from." 

Busy All-Year Round 

Given that Dickson Realty spans several resort towns and areas ideal for any time of year, things don't seem to slow down quite as much as in other locations during winter. It's not just luxurious in the Reno-Lake Tahoe region, it's a hot year-round destination for world-class summer and winter sports and recreation. There's everything from PGA-level golf to hiking, skiing, and mountain biking. 

"The lifestyle of living in the Reno-Truckee-Tahoe area gives us a huge advantage to overcome a slow winter season," says Reel. "While winter does bring a slower sales pace to many parts of the country, we're fortunate to have Lake Tahoe in our backyard and the largest concentration of ski resorts in the lower 48 states." 

Reel also mentions that living in Nevada not only brings a great quality of life but comes with financial benefits as well, noting, "The advantages of living in Nevada can be financial, especially for our neighbors in California. Nevada is a zero-income tax state, and the winter season is when many business owners and high-net-worth individuals are involved in their tax planning strategies." 

Despite serving in such a sought-after area offering many advantages for home buyers and investors, they still experience tough times and slow market conditions. Even in a location like this, nothing is ever certain, especially during an economic downturn.

"Our market does slow down from time to time, and there's certainly uncertainty in geopolitical and economic markets as we've had now for several months," says Reel. "When market conditions turn up or down, our agents are equipped to provide advice to their clients, enabling them to make informed decisions." 

A Tech Partner That Knows What They Need 

When it came to choosing a tech provider, given all the mergers and acquisitions within the industry, Dickson Realty wanted a partner who was committed to not selling — like Delta Media Group® is. It took them a while to find Delta, but they eventually did and couldn't be happier. 

"Our search process started a full year before we came to an agreement with Delta," says Reel. "There's a lot of competition in the space. Aligning with a partner who would commit to not selling out was very important to us." 

Aside from a promise to remain independent, Dickson Realty also wanted to partner with a provider that offered all the tools they needed to be successful in the real estate industry and understood what was needed to best serve clients. 

"In our business, relationships and expertise are key," says Reel. "It's very important to Dickson Realty's leadership that we're aligned with a technology partner that understands our industry, is responsive to our business needs, and is regarded as the go-to expert in providing the tools and resources we need to be successful. It's also important to have a partner that understands and supports our Ninja Selling philosophy of being in flow with our clients." 

Technology That Makes Life Easy 

Dickson Realty recognizes DeltaNET® for the way it ties all of the marketing and lead-generation tools together and integrates with their website. They feel that it helps both their agents and their marketing team, each in different ways. 

Reel says, "The DeltaNET is the centerpiece of our tech stack. The integration of our website with all the tools in the DeltaNET helps our marketing team and our agents on multiple fronts." 

Specifically, they love how it makes staying in touch with clients and prospects so easy and provides them with new ways to market everything from open houses to new listings and recent sales. They also value being able to create automated CMA reports in Delta Pitch, send automated email drip campaigns, and contact customers via SMS text messaging. 

Reel says, "We can easily and automatically stay in touch with prospects and clients while providing relevant content via email, text message, and/or social media. We can easily create CMAs and listing presentations for print and virtual presentations. We can easily market property listings and services with print and e-brochures, social media campaigns, and email blasts announcing new listings, open houses, and new sales." 

Along with being able to stay connected and create marketing materials, they appreciate that they can provide clients with relevant and accurate information on topics they want to know. This is an integral part of their communication with clients, which can be accomplished by automatically creating reports using market data, sending My Customer for Life (MCFL) newsletters, and regularly posting blog content. 

"We focus on being advisors to our clients, providing relevant information and advice, so our clients can make informed decisions about their real estate investments," says Reel. "All the automation tools built into DeltaNET help us disseminate that information and advice, and help us keep the channels of communication open with our prospects and clients." 

Reel believes that having all of these tools that make the agents' lives easier is the reason they have such a high adoption rate of the technology at Dickson Realty. 

"I'm using the word 'easy' a lot here, but this is the word I hear most often from our agents," says Reel. "Having a technology platform that's considered to be easy to learn and easy to use by our agents translates directly into adoption, where we're seeing greater than 50% of our agents logging into the DeltaNET in the first six months." 

Reaching Their Goals With the Help of Delta 

Over the past few years, Dickson Realty has seen great growth and success. One of their goals for the new year is to continue growing and increase their market share even more. 

"Our goals for 2023 include continued growth and success," says Reel. "For three of the past four years, we've increased our market share despite more competition from large corporate real estate companies. We intend to continue our growth trajectory." 

Another goal they have is to continue to recruit agents who represent their brand well and mesh with their culture. Aside from bringing on new agents, they strive to retain their current agents and help them succeed both individually and as a team through continued education and support. 

Reel says, "From 2020 through 2022, we attracted and retained about a quarter of the region's top-producing agents. We're going to continue to recruit agents who fit our culture and want to build upon their success with the top-ranked firm in the area." 

He believes that Delta Media Group is going to play a substantial role in helping them achieve these goals, given that the tools and features provided through DeltaNET supply everything they need to keep leveling up. 

"We're confident that Delta Media Group and the DeltaNET will be key in helping us reach these goals," says Reel. "The depth and variety of the toolkit that Delta Media brings to our company, I believe, is second to none."

Celebrating 50 Years in Business

In 2023, Dickson Realty will celebrate 50 years in business, which is not a small accomplishment. With a long history of success in their rearview, they are always making updates to keep things fresh. 

"As the largest real estate firm in Northern Nevada and the 96th largest independent real estate firm in the country, we're launching a modern, more contemporary brand to take us into the next decade," says Reel. 

One of the keys to their success over the past 50 years has been their consistency in maintaining a high standard of service. Dickson Realty plans to keep this up for the next 50 years, and the next 50 years after that. And this goes beyond the way they treat their customers; it's also the service the staff provides for their agents and that they provide for their communities. 

"We're positioned to continue to provide the same high-level customer service, industry leadership, and community service that Dickson Realty has become known for," says Reel. 

Climbing to New Heights 

By supporting their communities, prioritizing the well-being of every agent, and elevating the customer experience, Dickson Realty has risen to the top of the Reno-Lake Tahoe real estate market. Reel feels that Delta has helped make all of this possible with its significant impact. He encourages others in the industry to try DeltaNET themselves to experience the same impact. 

"I could go on and on and on about how much we love Delta, but to learn about the full impact of what Delta Media can do for a successful real estate company is to experience it," says Reel. "So I encourage anyone who's reading this or who is seeing this and is interested in learning more to schedule a meeting with the Delta team."

Dickson Realty is always climbing to new heights. As they continue to raise their standards even higher, we don't doubt that 2023 will be their best year yet!

November
10

As a real estate agent, your brand is one of your most valuable assets. In fact, your brand is inseparable from your personal identity. After all, you are the thing that makes your brand unique. And yet, a brand is more than just a fancy way of talking about yourself. There's a lot under the hood!

A brand consists of different factors that all work together:

  • Your unique perspective and expertise
  • The problems you specialize in solving
  • The ideal customer type you focus on
  • The "promised experience" you offer
  • Anything you share and publish online
  • The actual, live "customer experience"
  • Reviews, testimonials, word of mouth

As you can see, your brand isn't made up solely of things that you directly control. What others think about you is also part of your brand—which extends to your customers and colleagues. Every time you interact with someone in a professional capacity, you are contributing to your brand.

That might seem pretty intimidating at first!

But don't fret—avoiding embarrassment and liability is only a tiny part of branding. Done right, a brand helps attract the right people to you like a magnet: The customers who will move your business forward because they are aligned with your unique vision and value.

Your Real Estate Website Is the Key to Effective Branding

When it comes to branding, your real estate website is the #1 stop.

During the pandemic, Millennials and Gen Z made a strong showing as both buyers and first-time sellers. These generations overwhelmingly prefer digital media, in part because it gives them the chance to make informed decisions before they need to face the pressure of a "sales call."

The vast majority of your future clients will learn about you online before they ever have the chance to meet you. That being the case, it's crucial to have a modern, fast, secure website that's easy to use. In particular, your website should be easy to navigate on smartphones and other mobile devices.

Your website is important for all kinds of reasons:

  • It provides a single, definitive "port of call" to see everything related to your services
  • All of your social media, email marketing, and more ultimately direct traffic back to it
  • A memorable, branded domain name makes it easier to be found by clients
  • Reviews and referrals will ultimately send future customers directly to your website

Making Your Brand Work Once Your Website Is Live

Once your website is open for business, there's still more to do. A website is always a work in progress, so you should try to get it up and running even before you know your brand vision inside and out. Once the basics are in place, you can refine the online experience until it is exactly what you want.

Be sure to keep these things in mind:

  • Focus on Your Core Audience
    Whether you work with buyers or sellers, single-family homes or commercial properties, you have a core audience. Every piece of marketing is written for someone, so zero in on the problems and burning questions that keep this group awake at night, then answer them throughout your website.
  • Spotlight Your Unique Traits
    Today's most effective brands are clear on values. Be sure to explain what you do, who you do it for, and why you do it—and what your future customers can expect from you. When you become known for something special, like exceptional customer care, it informs the full brand strategy.
  • Get the Right Look and Feel
    A website is a terrific place to start branding because it helps you make decisions about all kinds of other details. Be selective in your choice of colors and typography. Consistently branded color and type ensure people recognize a message from you instantly and helps you define things like logo design.
  • Publish Useful Content Regularly
    "Content" is any helpful, informative material you publish on your website. Its purpose is to help visitors solve a problem or answer a question so they can make informed choices in the real estate market. As a publisher, you preview the insights you have to offer and position yourself as a trusted advisor.
  • Amplify Your Reach with Social Media
    Once you're comfortable with your website and it looks like what you had in mind, it's time to start promotion. Promoting your website is much easier when the content aspect is already in place. Each time you publish a blog or video, share it across all of your social media networks.

A welcoming website is the launch pad for a powerful real estate brand. No matter where you are in your career journey, you can take your brand to the next level. Contact us to learn more.

October
11

Marketing is an incredibly important part of building your real estate brand.

But it's not the only part.

In fact, plenty of work developing your brand happens before you're truly in the swing of marketing. To craft a consistent brand, you need to start with a vision of exactly what you want the brand to stand for.

Over time, your vision will change and grow. Likewise, your brand will also be influenced by customer interactions and their outcomes. After all, a brand isn't something you can control completely from the top down. It's also made up of what your customers believe about you, and that is always unfolding.

When your brand has a clear purpose and direction, though, it is much easier to attract the customers who will get the most value from what you have to offer. That enables you to provide them with great experiences that will reinforce all the positive things about your brand.

Create a Vision that Will Sustain Your Real Estate Brand in 2023 and Beyond

Even if you have years of experience, it's never too late to refresh your brand. The more your brand resonates with you, the easier it will be to deliver the kind of quality you want to be associated with.

Many new real estate agents do their first round of brand development after about a year's experience. This helps them understand what kind of customers energize them and whose problems they can solve.

As your perspective develops, revisiting your brand is natural. That's especially true if you find yourself becoming known for things that don't really interest you, or not gaining traction with the expertise you really want to be sought out for. It all goes back to your branding vision.

Here's how to make sure you are creating a brand that truly suits you:

  • Focus on Your Ideal Customers
    Sometimes, it can take a while for real estate agents to get used to presenting themselves as experts. As soon as you set your sights higher, the world opens up to you. One crucial step is to identify your "ideal" customers in detail. What kind of customer do you truly look forward to working with? What issues do they bring to the table and how can you communicate that you are the right person to help them?

  • Start Saying "No" to Everyone Else
    Real estate is the most popular second career in the United States. When embarking on a whole new journey, it's not unusual to feel like you need to keep your door open to absolutely everyone. But the opposite is true: Like a laser, your brand becomes more powerful the more focused it is. Start turning down customers who don't fit – and to build your network, refer those people to colleagues instead.

  • Do a Deep Dive About Your Customers
    Every piece of marketing is written for someone. Before you can captivate them with your marketing, you should understand what makes them tick. This requires a little detective work. Pretend you're the customer, whether that means a first-time homebuyer starting a career, an empty nester, or whatever. Look at the platforms and publications that influence their thinking as they search for real estate info.

  • Identify Exactly What's Missing for Your Customers
    When someone wants to buy or sell a home, they may spend weeks or even months researching. Still, it doesn't mean they have all the facts. When you do your own deep-dive research from the perspective of your customers, you'll see gaps in information and unaddressed issues everywhere you look. It's these missing elements that enable your marketing to stand out when you address them clearly and well.

  • Communicate the Missing Element in Your Marketing
    Now, you're in a prime position to start doing more concrete marketing activities. Begin with the gaps. What questions are going unanswered for your customers? What resources would they benefit from that they may not even know about? Act as the bridge from where they are to where they wish to go.

  • Validate Your Assumptions Whenever Possible
    Your knowledge of your customers will get deeper with experience. At the same time, their needs and preferences might evolve. Always validate the assumptions embedded into your brand by getting real feedback whenever possible, including asking for reviews and testimonials from satisfied customers.

  • Use Marketing Automation to Your Advantage
    Your marketing exists to communicate your brand's value to the world. As your brand vision and your marketing become better aligned, you can focus on optimizing your marketing output. DeltaNET 7 is a trusted real estate CRM that helps you deliver top quality marketing (including social media, email, and much more) in a fraction of the time it would take to do it all manually.

Contact us to discover more about real estate marketing automation.

August
24

When a real estate agent enters the field with a newly minted license, what's the first thing they do? Generally, before they set up a website, print business cards, or anything else, they start telling everyone they know — "I'm a real estate agent now!"

This approach is natural. After all, you start off with no connections besides the people you know. As the #1 second career in America, everyone comes to real estate with their own unique network and background. And strong relationships are the key to lasting success.

But there is one little way in which this time-honored tradition backfires: The average person doesn't just know one real estate agent. They know three or four.

How can they decide who gets their business once they're actually in the market? It might come down to their relationship with the individual or to their specialization. But whatever the case may be, you can't guarantee you'll get work even from people you know.

Now, extend that out to all the thousands of people in your community. Everyone knows real estate agents, and some have agents in their own families. Even if you have a foot in the door, the key to building and sustaining a relationship is maintaining your visibility. You can't meet in person with every lead or be on the phone all the time, so you need a variety of methods.

You Need Life-Long Customer Relationships, Not Business "Up for Grabs"

Even though the average client knows many real estate agents, they don't always use that knowledge. In fact, most clients only interview one agent. Usually, they've done online research on several — but in the end, the first person to get the call is the one who closes an agreement. What happens after that? Sadly, it's more bad news for the average agent.

Although 87% of people surveyed say they would be glad to use the same agent again, unfortunately, only a small percentage actually do. In part, that's because it may take anywhere from three to seven years for them to re-enter the market. During that time, they may have made plans to move far out of their original agent's service area. But more often, they've simply forgotten that person's name.

After a few years, who can blame them? So, no matter what stage you've reached in your business, you need to be a consistent presence — what industry experts call "staying top of mind." You know you're top of mind for someone if your name instantly comes to mind when they think about a real estate agent. That's a challenging process — but it's far from impossible. By combining the right techniques and technology, you can get there.

"Top of Mind" in the Digital Age

It wasn't all that long ago when real estate agents who wanted to stay top of mind used giveaways like branded pens or refrigerator magnets. The idea was that, as you used or saw these objects daily, they acted as built-in reminders about the professionals in your community.

Nowadays, branded merchandise is quickly lost. Although most brokerages issue business cards for all of their agents and brokers, a declining percentage of customers have a dedicated space to keep them. No single touchpoint or piece of memorabilia can do the whole job of staying top of mind. Instead, you need to make your own positive imprint on your community.

When you raise your community profile, the people whose lives you've impacted will help do the work of marketing and advertising for you. More people will know who you are, what you do, and whom you serve, ensuring that they point the way to your brand when others need you.

Likewise, a strategic effort to raise your community profile means people you've worked with in the past have more opportunities to become re-acquainted with you, even years later, and are less likely to forget about you. Combined with a customer retention plan, you'll grow your business faster.

Staying top of mind is much easier with the right technology in your corner. A modern Customer Relationship Management platform provides a sound foundation to build your entire approach.

Even so, that's only the beginning. When you decide to elevate your community profile, you yourself are your greatest marketing asset. You're giving people the opportunity to meet you and learn all about the unique value you can provide – but it's crucial to do that in a sustainable and scalable way.

Get Familiar With All the Features of DeltaNET®

One of the most challenging parts of presenting your brand to the community is finding the right way to manage all the different aspects of marketing your services. With so many options to choose from, real estate agents need something that can cut through the clutter and illuminate opportunities. The DeltaNET real estate CRM does just that.

By providing an AI-driven, all-in-one center of excellence for marketing and advertising, it helps you maintain complete visibility into your network. You'll always know who your prospects, leads, and customers are, where they stand in any pending transactions, and when to follow up.

With information unified in one place, it's much easier to develop approaches that make a winning difference. DeltaNET enables you to plan, fine-tune, and execute marketing campaigns in a matter of minutes. They can run one time or continue for months with minimal oversight. That ensures consistent, targeted communication to everyone in your community.

Here are some approaches that have worked for real estate professionals just like you:

1. Flyers for Sponsorships and Events

A community's most prominent real estate brands often build their reputation on involvement in events and causes that make a difference in the local area. Whether it's a holiday soup kitchen or an annual 5K run for cancer research, every location has events that make up the unique texture of its culture.

Whether you'll be sponsoring an event or planning your own, DeltaNET can help you with the digital and print materials you'll need. Not only can you publicize your events through email, social media, and more, but you can also collect registration details on attendees and "no shows" for future follow-up.

2. Local Content and Collateral

Any community presents countless opportunities for mutually beneficial collaboration. The more you know about local restaurants, clubs, theaters, and other amenities, the easier it is to cross-promote. A real estate agent can also make a positive difference in high school sports and other organizations.

When someone is contemplating a big move, they're not just choosing a piece of property. They're also making an important choice about the community, amenities, and people who will shape their future. A local expert like you can help them make an informed decision by developing targeted content.

3. Neighborhood Newsletters

When it's time to get granular, DeltaNET is there for you. Whether you specialize in buying or selling, a common tool used by many real estate agents is the Neighborhood Report. Sellers need it to know how a home should be priced, while buyers use it to understand their options.

Designing, researching, and writing a neighborhood report is traditionally a major undertaking that can soak up several days of work — and by the time you finish, your data might be out of date. But with a white label Market Watch Report, it generates directly from DeltaNET.

4. Automated, Event-Driven Social Updates

Of all the different professionals posting on social media today, it's undeniable that real estate agents have the biggest opportunity to yield consistent sales and revenue from their activity. Still, efficiency counts; you don't want to spend hour after hour on Instagram or Facebook.

Luckily, you don't have to. With DeltaNET, you can send instant hands-off updates to your social media feed regarding important events. When listings go live, details change, or there is an upcoming open house, your audience will know.

A sterling community reputation as a real estate agent may take years to earn. But the best time to start is always now, and you don't have to do all the legwork yourself. The right technology will save you time and effort.

March
31

What sets your real estate website apart from the competition? While features like MLS search are essential and reliable for getting your foot in the door, you'll need more than the basics to truly set your real estate brand apart online. Adding a personal touch through customization and the content you create is the best way to make your real estate website stand out for all of the right reasons.

Let's start with content. Even if you don't normally fancy yourself a blogger, your knowledge base on real estate topics, neighborhoods, and market trends put you in a unique position to inform your target audience on the topics that matter to them. In addition to being informative, the content that you — or your custom content creator — develop is the perfect platform to give your website that all-important personal touch.

Inform and Engage

Expertise inspires confidence in your audience, and you're an expert on so many of the topics that are important to real estate clients. Content that informs also tends to convert. In that way, think of the informative content that you create as a preview of the expertise that clients can expect when they choose your brand.

Informative content can be customized to suit your target audience and the places where you do business. If you cater to first-time buyers in budget-friendly markets, then your content can help walk them through the early steps of the purchasing process. If you aim to reach experienced, luxury clientele, then you might choose to focus on more advanced topics. Catering your content to your audience adds a personal touch and keeps them coming back to learn more.

Become a Trusted Source on the Markets That Matter to Your Brand

Your expertise also extends to the communities where you do business, and the neighborhood knowledge that you share through your content is a vital asset for your audience. It's also one of the ways that you can set your brand apart online.

Whether you're discussing local attractions, services, community spaces, small businesses, or events, all of these things matter to people who are considering buying a home in that market. Buyers will be able to visit your website to learn all about the neighborhoods where they're shopping for homes, and sellers will appreciate the way that you showcase the communities where they're selling a home.

Of course, market knowledge also applies when you're discussing the latest real estate trends in your local communities and providing key data that can help your audience make informed decisions. Integration of market data into your content provides another valuable resource while also reinforcing your real estate expertise.

Showcase Your Core Values and Culture

Remember, too, that content doesn't always have to be about providing advice or market data. It's also a great tool for showcasing the personality of your team, and the values of your brand. Share stories about how your team has participated in community events, discuss local non-profits that you support, or simply have some fun with a more personality-driven blog post that peels back the curtain on life in the real estate industry. These may seem like small things, but they ultimately add up to provide a more vibrant impression of your brand.

Customize Your Website to Create a Unique Identity

Customization is one of the core elements of our website design philosophy, and you don't want to post all of that great content on a cookie-cutter website that looks the same as the websites of your competitors. You want a seamless website that is uniquely yours and one that shows off all of the best aspects of your real estate brand.

Our customization options make it easy for you to personalize your website with custom, full-screen background images/video, an editable homepage welcome message, editable page content, and customizable site navigation. You can also easily integrate your latest blog posts, market activity stats, featured listings, and so much more.

When you combine that customization with key features like IDX listing integration, mobile-friendly design, live chat, strong SEO, and robust listings search options, you have a website that offers everything your audience needs in one convenient package.

Give Your Brand a Boost with a Fresh Real Estate Website

Your website is an essential element of all your digital marketing and lead-generation efforts, so getting the design just right is well worth the effort. As we've hopefully shown today, designing your website also presents extensive opportunities for customization, and adding a personal touch. So if your current website isn't quite distinctive enough or lacks some of the features that modern real estate clients want, now is the perfect time to develop a website that truly reflects all of the best things about your real estate brand.

March
15

If you're in a large agency or brokerage, your branding naturally dovetails with that of the team. Still, no matter if you work independently or within an organization, you should keep an eye on how you present yourself to potential customers — especially online.

Branding may sound complicated, but it's simply the process of communicating in a thoughtful and consistent way to help people understand the three biggest things they need to know about you:

  • What you do
  • Who you do it for
  • How you do it differently

No real estate agent is perfect for everyone, yet newcomers to the field often cast a wide net. They worry that if they get specific about what they do, they will alienate potential customers and get less business. The opposite is true: When your brand is specific, you attract more of your ideal clientele.

In the first year or so, any real estate agent will spend plenty of time learning the ropes. It's not out of the ordinary to be unsure what kind of customers you want to work with or what problems you enjoy solving. After some experience, it's essential to start tackling these big questions.

The sooner you do, the sooner you can go from chasing leads to attracting referrals.

Every interaction you have with the public or customers has the potential to influence their perception of your brand. Of course, we can't control everything and shouldn't try. But understanding your vision for your brand will help ensure you're upholding your values and aspirations.

Here are some ways to come to grips with real estate branding:

  • Decide Which Clients Energize You
    It's okay to conclude that certain clients just aren't right for you — there are plenty of people out there and enough agents to help them all. Do you resonate with first-time buyers or luxury buyers? Boomers or Zoomers? Think about who you communicate best with and what interactions give you more energy.

  • Zero In on Specific Problems to Solve
    For a brand to speak to someone, it needs to be crafted for their needs. For example, do you know first-time buying programs inside and out? If first-time buyers are your core customers, then your knowledge can become a cornerstone of your brand. The same applies to any type of problem or question.

  • Have a Visually Consistent Style
    Your real estate website is where most of your future customers will first "meet" you. Be sure it has a consistent style, with the same colors and fonts used throughout. Then, reproduce those fundamentals on all other collateral, such as your business cards, email marketing, or direct mail fliers.

  • Talk in Terms of Benefits, Not Features
    Benefits are what happens for the client. Features are just details of how they get there. Get to the nitty-gritty: Do you consistently get your sellers' homes to closing in 30 days or less? This concrete, numbers-focused figure will be much more enticing to them than a whole list of your credentials and education.

  • Make Following Up Part of Your Routine
    No matter if you're working with a lead or a satisfied customer, following up is crucial. It shows them you care about their success and builds the relationship. You may need to follow up 7-10 times to get business from a lead — and some agents follow up every month with past clients to request referrals.

  • Extend Your Brand to Digital Platforms
    Of all the different professionals who spend time on social media, real estate agents have the best opportunity to grow their business. Dig into social platforms to find out where your audience is active and what they're looking for — then provide helpful, informative content that leads back to your site.

  • Network with Your Real Estate Peers
    A clear, well-defined brand makes you the "go-to" problem-solver in a specific arena. That means your peers, who also aren't trying to do everything for everyone, will be more likely to send business your way when they encounter someone who meets your criteria, but not their own.

  • Have a Written Marketing Plan
    Your marketing can be thought of as your brand in action. Write down your key marketing goals and select a handful of ways, not more than three, to pursue them. Then, make sure all your communications consistently showcase what your brand is all about.

Leverage the Right Technology to Make Branding a Natural Part of Your Business Workflow

Branding for real estate is a big topic, but having the right technology on your side can help. When you use a real all-in-one solution like DeltaNET®6 to manage your relationships, you'll spend less time figuring out where people are and more time giving them the value they expect.

Contact us to learn more about how real estate marketing can enhance your brand.

March
3

Your real estate website is your digital first impression.

Today's buyers are more likely to meet you online than through a showing or other face-to-face event. This is only growing more true as Millennials and Generation Z buyers enter the market. Technology is essential to the lifestyles of younger buyers.

No matter whether you're a solo agent or work within a large brokerage, you already know you need a website. But is your website actually producing the business value you expect from it? For many in the industry, the answer is no. The website isn't making the strong first impression you want and deserve.

When agents first get started, it's not out of the ordinary to post a simple website as soon as possible and hope for the best. But your website is more than just a brochure that introduces you. It draws the right people to your door and helps turn visitors into customers.

Even if your website isn't doing much for you right now, it's never too late to change your strategy. Done right, your website has the potential to work for you 24 hours a day, seven days a week, even while you sleep. It is the key to growing your practice while maintaining a healthy work-life balance.

Your Website Tells People What to Expect from You – Is It Sending the Right Message?

Your website communicates more than just what's on the page. Yes, visitors are looking through what you have to say about yourself and your business. But they are also reading between the lines, making decisions in seconds. They judge your digital brand based on your website's user experience.

User experience is everything that impacts a person while they use a website, yours or anyone else's. It includes the look, feel, navigation, speed, ease of use, and how well the website helps someone to meet their needs or answer their questions. Some of these factors can be very subtle.

Developers and designers spend thousands of hours figuring out how to deliver the best user experience for a given website. Luckily, because user experience incorporates so many different elements, there are always plenty of ways you can improve it — even if you don't have dazzling technical skills yourself.

Let's look at some of the biggest elements that influence your digital reputation:

  • Ease of Navigation
    The most important topics on your website should be reflected in the top navigation bar, where they only take one click to find. It's wise to avoid having any information that takes more than three clicks to reach. If you can't avoid having some "buried treasure," make sure your site has a good search function.

  • Mobile-Friendliness
    An increasing number of people use a smartphone as their primary or even only method of going online. A truly mobile-friendly site is responsive, meaning it changes to fit the display size and inputs available for a smartphone or tablet user. Even older websites can often be made responsive in a few clicks.

  • Professionalism
    What does it mean for a website to "look professional?" Professionalism is communicated by things that are easy to take for granted: The site has a consistent layout, color scheme, and fonts, relevant imagery is used, and everything is organized in a way that makes sense.

  • Trust Markers
    "Trust markers" are things that help frame you as a credible and established expert. In real estate, the most important are seals and logos you're entitled to use as a member of a professional organization or holder of a recognized certification.

  • Helpful, Informative Content
    Content is anything you publish with the goal of helping others make more informed decisions. Blogs and video are the most common forms of real estate content. They provide a reason to explore your website in detail. They can also help you capture traffic from relevant online searches.

  • Information About You and Your Practice
    You are your most important brand asset — the star of the show. The best way to make an introduction is with a video message first-time visitors can use to learn about you. Answer their big questions: What makes you different? Who do you help and how?

  • Easy Ways to Get in Contact
    When someone contacts you for the first time, seconds count. Make it easy for them to connect by phone, email, social media, or text. Alerts from your website can help you respond more quickly.

  • Your Current Listings
    Last, but certainly not least, your listings should be reflected right on your own website. MLS gives you plenty of options to incorporate your active listings. When visitors can browse listings directly from your website, they are much more likely to reach out to you or subscribe to your email marketing list.

Contact us to learn more about boosting your online reputation.

December
23

The end goal of your online marketing is to create a reliable source for converting clients, and generating engagement is one of the most important steps that leads to that goal. But with so much competition for attention online, increasing your engagement can feel like an uphill climb. The good news is that growing your online engagement is easier than you might think, with the right tools, tactics, and a willingness to invest consistent effort into achieving your engagement goals.

Know Who You're Trying to Reach and Where to Find Them

Before you get busy with specific engagement tactics for your online marketing, it's critical to understand exactly who you're trying to reach. That's because the best tactics for generating engagement will differ depending on your target audience. Whether you're planning out your website content, social media strategy, or paid advertising, start by considering the needs and online habits of your target audience.

When you know who you want to reach, you can get busy learning about the best places to find them online. This is especially important for social media because different demographics favor different platforms. Research any social platform you're planning to use ahead of time, integrate best practices, and ensure that you're investing your energy in the places that will deliver the best results.

Invest Your Time Wisely on Social Media

While there are many places to grow your engagement and guide people to your website, it's tough to top the efficiency of social media. With the right tactics, you can spend more time generating engagement on social platforms and less time thinking about what to do next.

  • Less Promotion, More Conversation
    Spending too much time on promotion and not enough time on conversation is one of the easiest mistakes to make with social media marketing. That doesn't mean that you can't showcase listings or highlight all of your great content. It just means that the most successful real estate brands and agents on social media invest significant time in engaging with their audience. Always remember that engagement is a two-way street, especially on social.

  • Want Engagement? Start by Asking Questions
    If you want to inspire conversations and get your social connections to engage, asking questions is the perfect place to start. Think about questions that speak to the needs of your target audience, ask them often, and encourage your audience to ask questions, too. By answering questions, you can advance the conversation and build trust by demonstrating your real estate expertise.

  • How Social and Your Website Work Hand in Hand to Generate Engagement
    Ideally, you want a seamless experience between your social media pages and your real estate website. The content on your website should be easy to find on all of your social channels, and visitors to your website should be able to connect with all of your social accounts easily.

  • Create a Social Schedule and Stick to It
    Achieving your engagement goals is so much easier when you have a plan for how to get there, and a social schedule so that you'll always know what to do next. When you know how to reach those goals, you can use your social media time much more efficiently and effectively.

Create Content That Tells Stories and Encourages Conversations

The content that you create for your real estate website, blog, and social media should be one of your best sources of engagement. When you share content on social, jump into the comments to start the conversation. When you're thinking of content ideas for your blog, focus on topics that will encourage your audience to ask questions and leave comments.

And don't be afraid to branch out into new types of content! Video content is easier than ever to create, and it's a great tool for generating engagement. People are more likely to feel a connection when they can see your face, listen to your voice, and hear directly from you. In addition to attracting people to your website, your content is a powerful tool for keeping them there once they arrive.

Track Results to Find Out What Works Best for Your Brand

Not every engagement strategy will be the right fit for every agent or real estate business. That's one reason why it's so important to track your results, look at your analytics, and refine your strategy over time. It's easier to grow engagement when you have data-based insights on what works best with your audience.

No matter what else you do to grow your engagement, remember that authenticity is key. When your audience feels like they can connect with you on a human level, they're more likely to engage. That's true for social media, your website, and all of your real estate marketing efforts.

November
19

What sets you apart from your competition? No matter the size of your market, you're not the only game in town for real estate clients. With millions of registered agents all over the United States, the reality is that your potential clients always have a choice. Your branding is one of the most important ways to communicate the things that set your business apart, build trust, and establish your identity with your target audience over the long term. Creating a branding strategy is complex, but the effort you invest can ultimately help shape the future of your real estate business.

Know Your Audience, Shape Your Brand

Who are you trying to reach? With branding, it's hard to be everything to everyone and equally difficult to set yourself apart from the competition using generalities. Effective branding starts with knowing your audience, and understanding what they're looking for from a real estate business.

Whether you cater to young, first-time buyers, luxury real estate clients, people searching for vacation homes, older clients looking for the perfect place to retire, or any other niche, your unique value proposition is at the heart of your branding.

So, in what ways do you serve your target audience better than the competition? When faced with other real estate options that serve a similar niche, why should they choose you? Answering these questions is the perfect place to start shaping your brand. And when you answer those questions through branding in a way that resonates with your target audience, your business can benefit for years to come.

Branding in the Digital Age

In today's digital world, the reality is that most real estate prospects begin their search for real estate services online. A consistent, reliable online presence is one of the biggest keys to ensuring that your brand reaches as many people as possible.

  • Real Estate Website
    Your real estate website is the cornerstone of all of your online branding efforts. It's a place where people come to learn about your business, browse your listings, and find out whether you're the right choice for their needs. That's why it's so important to have informative, educational content, to help prospects find answers to their real estate questions, discover the communities where you sell homes, experience your expertise, and learn how your brand stands out from the competition.

  • Social Media
    When it comes to connecting with prospects and building relationships that lead to business, it's hard to top social media. For real estate businesses, social media is a place to share expertise, engage with your audience, and highlight the best parts of your brand. Agents can use social to connect with clients on a more personal level, showcase communities, give a peek behind the scenes of life as a real estate agent, and build lasting relationships. Make sure that your brand's name and appearance are consistent to provide a seamless experience across all social platforms that you use.

  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
    No matter how well you develop your brand, the only way to maximize its impact is to ensure that your message reaches as many people as possible within your target audience. SEO helps you stand out from the competition, and ensure that your brand is what people find when they're searching for real estate services in your area.

  • Online Advertising
    While building organic SEO and growing your social media audience takes time, paid online advertising is available to give your brand a boost anytime. Advertising on social media and in search engines can be a great way to get your brand in front of the right people at the right time.

Traditional Branding Tools for Real Estate

Digital marketing is excellent, but that doesn't mean that more traditional marketing methods don't have a place in modern branding. There's a good reason that "For Sale" and "Sold" signs are still ubiquitous on the lawns of homes around the country. Because they work! And if your target demographic isn't so active online, then tools like direct mail and traditional advertising can help you reach them. Even for a more modern audience, traditional marketing tools can provide a valuable complement to your digital branding efforts.

Building Your Brand to Last

In the end, effective real estate branding requires a holistic approach. When you understand who you're trying to reach and which factors differentiate your real estate business from the competition, you can use that information to shape all of the other aspects of your branding. While some parts of your brand will likely remain the same long term, remember that it's also a good idea to be nimble and experiment. Finding new ways to reach prospects as branding tools evolve will help you build a brand that can outlast any trend.

September
28

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:

  • Brand and Promote Yourself as a Local Real Estate Expert
    In the coming years, local expertise will be more important than ever. Clients will need agents they trust to evaluate properties, help them choose between unfamiliar neighborhoods, and give them an inside view of the community they'll be joining. Your local insights are a premium asset, so market them well.

  • Personalize the Customer Care Experience at Every Turn
    Personalization comes from knowing and caring about the individual. Learn their needs and goals and use those details to send them only the most relevant content. Customized email marketing can help you keep relationships burning, even if it takes weeks or months for a lead to jump into the market.

  • Build Referral Business into Your Overall Strategic Plan
    Referral business is the ultimate reflection of your ability to build value-added partnerships with your customers — relationships so deep, they will vouch for you to those they care about. But referrals don't usually happen on their own. Instead, you'll need to follow up and ask for them!

  • Focus on Customer Retention, Not Just Lead Generation
    Every satisfied customer you retain is one who will call you in the future. Although customers may wait years between real estate transactions, the lifetime value of their patronage can be very high. Social media marketing from your Facebook business page keeps you connected long-term.

  • Use Social Proof and Online Reputation Management to Your Advantage
    Social proof tells future customers others "just like them" have succeeded thanks to your services. Reviews on platforms like Google and Yelp not only help persuade visitors to contact you, they can also raise your search engine visibility. Get used to actively asking for testimonials when you can.

  • Leverage Opportunities to Make Your Listings Stand Out
    Your listings can be the best in your area if you consistently enhance each home's unique story with photography, multimedia, and interactive features. Properties in Motion is an easy way to enrich property marketing with video tours that save buyers' time and give sellers greater confidence in you.

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.

August
31

Americans are exposed to somewhere between 4,000 and 10,000 advertisements every day. But, here's what most advertising and marketing professionals don't want to admit: Most are unwelcome.

Watch presentations from folks deeply involved in this advertising glut. You're sure to hear, "It isn't that people don't like ads! They just don't like irrelevant ads!" From a consumer's perspective, however, the facts tell a different story.

These days, most marketing and advertising happens online. People know going about their business means they will be sold to. In some cases, they are the product being packaged for advertisers. So, no surprise, more than 763 million people were blocking digital ads by the end of 2019.

The average person is exhausted of ads and increasingly wary of brands, especially those who want to cozy up on so- cial media. Historians looking back on 2020 might note the speed with which "we're all in this together" went from a rallying cry to a hollow cliché.

There's a reason why "Silence, brand!" is one of today's most prolific memes. People increasingly regard their attention as their property. And they are putting a fence around it.

Into this challenging landscape steps the real estate professional. Agents and brokers have two distinct advantages compared to so many other brands:

Each one has a unique blend of skills and an experienced, personal perspective

They are intimately involved in helping clients achieve major goals in their lives

No matter how hard a company tries to give a wisecracking hipster voice to its brand, it won't change the taste of its hamburger. But real estate is something wholly different, an industry that flourishes on personal relationships. One burger may be just as good as another when you're hungry, but there is a right real estate agent for any job.

Your brand exists to signal to your ideal customer that you are that person.

A brand is in some sense an abstraction – and exaggeration – of your best qualities. Just as a corporation isn't you but confers tax advantages on your activities, your brand is a shorthand for the experience you promise to provide to your customers. It represents you, but it will never be exactly the same thing as you.

When the difference between the real you and your brand is low, we call that "authenticity." When the difference is high, it's jarring – and people unfollow, block, or change the channel.

In Real Estate, Your Digital Brand Can Be a Truly Authentic Extension of Your Values

Big businesses know this, and they struggle to square the circle of making their brands seem "human" by giving them values, a mission, and more. When a robot appears human-like but is "off" just enough to be disturbing to look at, it's called the Uncanny Valley effect – and this is where many modern businesses end up.

Luckily, real estate agents don't have to assemble a brand from a collection of focus-group-tested parts.

Done well, your brand can spring organically from your interests, skills, personal values, and the needs of your ideal clients. The communication that comes from that kind of brand is naturally appealing and worth listening to.

Marketing automation enhances this effect by ensuring consistency. You can't be everywhere at once or talk to everyone individually, but your digital brand can. Build your brand on a solid foundation of humane, one-to-one communication, and the right technology can scale your messaging as you grow – without losing the human touch.

Here's how to expand your digital reach without sacrificing what matters:

Choose Your Face Over Your Logo
There's an instant difference between seeing a face and seeing a logo: A face is a fellow human being; a logo is a transaction! Use your face whenever possible, including profile pictures, masthead images, and thumbnails for video. Larger images can incorporate your logo, but people or properties should take the starring role.

Make It Easy to Connect in Real Time
Strive for a seamless transition be- tween clients reading your website and contacting you directly. A live chat interface is fast becoming the most popular way to do it, but text and social media can also work. Responding in minutes when a lead expresses interest demonstrates you genuinely care about their time.

• Incorporate Texting into Your Marketing
Texting is useful in other ways, too. Many people, especially under 30, regard it as more intimate than email. It's fast, convenient, and lets you show personality. Texting a quick follow-up after an open house or first meeting shows interest. Most people will also respond rather than leave a question unanswered, helping to foster those lines of communication.

Be Part of Your Community
In real estate, digital and offline brands can blend in fascinating ways. For example, you might decide to post on your blog about local restaurants and attractions. Allow yourself to be part of the action and build ties with others – that can only benefit your clients, who'll be guided by your insights as a local expert.

Use Video to Forge a Connection
Video was already gaining popularity, but now it is more important than ever: It is the next best thing to being there. A working knowledge of virtual tours and virtual open houses is a must. Be ready to videoconference if clients can't make the drive, and make video an ongoing part of your digital marketing plan.

Embrace the Power of Storytelling
Storytelling is one of the things that unites. Across all of human history, everywhere in the world, people have told stories to make sense of their lives. For your real estate brand, stories of your clients, in their own words, are powerful social proof. They help visitors see others "just like them" succeeding thanks to you.

Get Involved in Online Conversations
Old-fashioned brands talk "at" people; modern digital brands talk to and with them. Responding to others' social media threads lets them know you are there for a real give-and-take. Always aim to answer all replies to your social content. Browse relevant hashtags so you can find discus- sions where your input may make a difference.

Stretch Your Online Brand Offline
Your online brand can pleasantly surprise people by meeting them in the real world when they least expect it. You know you need to follow up with past clients, so why not send a handwritten card or a small, meaningful gift that recalls your time together? That adds more "oomph" to your email marketing.

Digital marketing technology enhances, amplifies, and expands what you bring to the table – but it can never, and will nev- er, replace you. With these tips, you keep the human element center stage in your digital branding.

June
17

Are you doing everything you can to turn your agents into the best possible representatives for your real estate brand? Just by the nature of the job, your agents are always representatives of your brand because they are the primary point of contact between your clients and your brand. But there's a difference between representing a brand and being a true ambassador.

Agents who are brand ambassadors recognize that promoting your larger brand is just as beneficial to them as it is to your real estate businesses because building a trusted, reliable, recognizable brand means more business for everyone. But agents are busy, so they may simply need some guidance and a nudge in the right direction. Here's how to turn your agents into valuable reps for your brand.

Start By Making Sure Agents Are Informed About Your Brand

In order to be great promoters for your brand, agents need to understand exactly what your brand means. That means going beyond logos and branded marketing materials to help agents understand the core values, standards, and benefits of your brand. An agent with an understanding of what your brand is will be better equipped to share that brand with the world.

  • Who Are You Trying to Reach, and How Do You Offer Value?
    For agents, it's hard to promote your brand if they are trying to be everything to everyone. So agents need to understand your target audience and how your brand brings value to that audience. If your brand is focused on luxury real estate clients, your agents will need to promote your brand differently than they would for first-time home buyers. Even if your brand is geared to a wider audience, helping agents understand your unique value proposition will help them rep your brand.

  • Do Agents Understand Your Brand Standards?
    While logos, color schemes, fonts, and images aren't everything when it comes to branding, those standards do make a big difference in brand consistency. Communicating those standards and making it easy for agents to integrate them into their own branding materials are simple ways to help agents promote your brand.

  • How Consistent Is Your Branding?
    Some parts of your branding, like your website, branded social media feeds, online advertising, and traditional marketing materials are largely beyond the control of your agents. However, keeping your brand consistent in all of those areas will make your brand more recognizable, which ultimately makes it easier for your agents to represent your brand.

How Marketing Tools and Technology Help Agents Rep Your Brand

The vast majority of agents will want to be great ambassadors for your brand, but they only have so much time to devote to actively representing your brand while still handling all of the day-to-day details of their work. That's why it's so important to provide them with the right tools and technology to make representing your brand a simple, streamlined process that they can easily integrate into their busy day.

  • Leveraging Technology to Make Promotion as Easy and Automated as Possible
    Your agents will be using technology to communicate with clients, cultivate leads, and promote your brand to the world. Are you providing all of the tools that they need to complete those tasks efficiently and effectively? Help them by providing the right marketing tools, making templates for key announcements on social channels, and giving them everything they need to represent your brand consistently — both online and in the wider world. Automate as many key tasks as possible, like sending email newsletters, to help agents rep your brand while still saving time in their busy day.

  • Keeping Track and Following Up with Branding Opportunities
    The right real estate CRM makes it so much easier for your agents to represent your brand and to keep track of all of the information that they need to serve their clients. CRM data makes it easier for agents to keep tabs on branding opportunities, know when to follow up, and know what makes each client tick.

  • Does Your Website Represent Your Brand?
    Your real estate website will be the first contact that many clients and prospects have with your brand. A great website that communicates your brand clearly gives your agent a leg up in representing your brand because it establishes your brand for your audience and helps communicate the values that your agents will build upon in their own interactions with clients.

Where Will Your Agents Take Your Brand Next?

Every agent should want to be a valuable rep for your brand, but it's up to you to provide what they need to succeed in that role. With the right mix of knowledge, tools, technology, and motivation, your agents will have everything they need to be outstanding reps for your brand.

May
27

Compared to all the other real estate professionals in America, what makes you special?

Phrased that way, this might feel like an intimidating question. But rest assured, there is an answer. The way you respond shapes your business in profound ways.

Here are examples of ideas other real estate experts like you have had:

  • "I'm special because nobody else knows the Borough of Brooklyn like I do."

  • "I'm special because I truly understand what goes into senior downsizing."

  • "I'm special because I bring years of negotiating experience to my clients."

The question is, how can you communicate your advantages so your leads will know and remember them? The solution is found in online branding.

Online branding is crucial because the majority of your future clients will find you online first. They might read about you on your website weeks or months before they actually expect to reach out to a real estate agent.

The first impression you make helps determine whether you're the one they eventually choose.

Exactly What Is a Brand, Anyway?

To clear up confusion, it helps to understand what branding is not:

  • Branding isn't just about your values, even though your values are part of your brand

  • Branding isn't just about your visual identity, such as your logo, color scheme, or fonts

  • Branding isn't just what you say about yourself, but also what others say about you

You can think of branding as a structured and intentional approach to communicating what you want others to know and remember about your business. Branding isn't just visual; it's everything you put out into the world, including how you interact with people professionally.

Likewise, things other people say about you — such as reviews on third-party sites like Yelp — become part of your brand when someone learns about you by reading them. But if you've taken time to think deeply about your brand, you'll be able to positively influence even the factors you don't directly control.

What Do You Want Your Brand to Represent?

There are several questions you can ask yourself to get to the heart of your brand:

  • Who Is Your Ideal Customer?
    After a little time getting used to the industry, this is the most crucial question any real estate pro can ask. All branding is directed "to" someone, and you'll need to know that person's characteristics. Marketing to first-time Millennial homebuyers is very different from marketing to Baby Boomers. Who do you want to serve, and what are their pain points? What demographics do they fall into? How do they research real estate issues?

  • What Is Your Mission?
    You might think of your mission as your promised experience, what you want to deliver for everyone who picks you over the competition. For the agent focusing on those Millennials, it might be something like: "Make the home buying process easy and stress-free for people aged 30-40 searching for their first home." Whatever you choose as your mission, it's most effective when you can express it in a single succinct statement.

  • What Can You Provide That Others Don't?
    Scroll back to the beginning of this article and take another look at the three answers people gave when they were asked what makes them special. Each statement provides insight into what they have to offer that most other real estate pros won't. Since everyone brings their own unique perspective to real estate, each person has their own grab-bag of specialized skills that can differentiate them from their colleagues.

Three Ways to Express Your Unique Brand Online

Once you have clarity on your brand, here's how to bring it to life online:

  • Blog Regularly in Your Areas of Expertise
    Every blog post serves as a preview, a tantalizing taste of the value you can offer when someone chooses you as their agent. By publishing regularly, you strengthen your credentials as a local expert. In the process, you can also raise your visibility in online searches on topics relevant to your business.

  • Embrace Branded Real Estate Video
    Video truly is the next best thing to being there. It's not just for listings, either: it's the ideal way to introduce yourself to new website visitors. The more video content you produce, the more chances people have to feel like they know and trust you. Some agents augment practically all of their blogs with video.

  • Amplify Your Voice on Social Media
    Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn all provide amazing opportunities to further your brand. Take the time to lavish attention on every element of your profiles, from header images to headlines. Then, share new content as it comes out. That should encompass blogs, videos, new listings, and any news that matters to you.

With best-in-class marketing automation, Delta Media Group helps you showcase your brand with confidence. Contact us to learn more.

March
5

Social media marketing is a key part of online visibility for real estate agents, brokers, and firms.

In fact, real estate experts are among the most active professionals on social media. That may mean there's plenty of competition for an audience's limited time, but it also means many of your peers are seeing great results. Platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram can be powerful lead engines if you use them right.

The challenge to social media newcomers is twofold:

  • Publishing content that captures attention and adds value for your target real estate prospects.

  • Doing so in a way that doesn't require you to spend all day scrolling through your social feed.

Social media is a notorious time sink, so it's important to have clear goals and focused execution. Yes, it can be fun to spread your wings as a thought leader in your community — but it's crucial to connect those activities to concrete business results. This is what many real estate pros overlook, and that can lead to disappointment.

Luckily, social media best practices for real estate are easy to work out with a little research. Here's how to use social media to really connect:

  • Include Visual Content In Your Posts
    Posts with images get 2.3x more engagement than plain text posts. No matter the subject, including a photo or illustration in each post is crucial. You don't have to become an award-winning photographer, but it is a good idea to invest in a camera (or upgrade your phone), so you can snap crisp, clear photos around your community for future posts. Of course, all real estate photos must be of the highest quality, especially for your listings.

  • Embrace the Potential of Short-Form and Live Video
    Short videos of three minutes or less are extremely popular on social media. A shorter video is much more likely to be watched from start to finish, enticing algorithms to display your content more prominently. Real estate tastemakers are getting more comfortable in front of the camera, so leverage this trend to foster a genuine human connection. As you gain experience, you can progress to live streams for more interactivity.

  • Promote Your Virtual Tours and Open Houses
    Are you among the legions of real estate experts from coast to coast who adopted virtual home tours during the pandemic? Buyers love virtual tours because they can see more properties with less travel, extending their search radius. You may have recorded a virtual tour for a specific group of buyers, but you can always share it on social media to inspire even more interest in a property. Properties in Motion makes the process a snap.

  • Showcase Your Client Success Stories
    Reviews and testimonials are among the most valuable content on your website. They reach out to visitors and spark confidence that others "just like them" have had success working with you. You can enhance this effect by going beyond static text and photos to social media-ready videos. Video testimonials will draw more attention to your rave reviews and motivate your social followers to give your website a visit.

  • Amplify Your Real Estate Blog Posts
    If you're not the kind of person who likes being on camera, your head might be spinning right about now. Fear not! Helpful, informative blog posts are still the cornerstone of a real estate social media strategy. When you publish useful blog posts, you give your social followers a peek at the kind of value you can offer them. Don't be afraid to re-share older posts, either — only a fraction of your followers will have seen them in the past.

  • Highlight Awesome Local Content
    Do you have to painstakingly craft every piece of social media content you share? No! As a real estate agent, the people and causes you interact with will give you credibility. With that in mind, you have a part to play within your community by spotlighting all the terrific things that go on. You can share content about local festivals, fundraisers, and ordinary folks doing extraordinary things — showing exactly what makes life in your area so appealing.

  • Use Social Media Automation to Make it All Easier
    What we've covered so far may seem like a ton of work, but there is a solution. Automated social media posts on an AI-driven platform like DeltaNET 6 can simplify your life while allowing you to be a true social butterfly. This all-in-one digital marketing center for real estate lets you plan entire campaigns in a few clicks. You can instantly share event-based updates, optimizing post timing, hashtags, and more for maximum effect.

Social media is easy to learn but challenging to master. Contact us to find out more about it from the leaders in real estate digital marketing.

February
18

You hear the same thing every few years: SEO is dead!

SEO — search engine optimization — has been a part of the internet for more than 20 years. Ever since the first search engines went mainstream, they needed clear signals to help them categorize the content of websites. Despite how smart it might seem, Google can't read. It needs a lot of help to understand what a page is about. SEO is a combination of best practices that make pages friendlier to human readers and search engine "bots" alike. In the process, properly SEO'd pages are more likely to appear prominently in search results.

Saying "SEO is dead!" is a lot like saying "clothing is dead!" because fashion trends change. What's popular may vary from time to time, but people still need things to wear. Likewise, search engines regularly update their standards and wise SEO practitioners follow suit — but search engines still need SEO, and so do the businesses that want to succeed online.

In short, SEO is as vital as ever. In fact, there is no other way to consistently and positively influence your website's visibility in organic search. What has changed is the standard of performance, design, and usability a good SEO campaign should strive for.

Modern SEO is About Helping Website Visitors Reach Their Goals

You might think of SEO as a toolkit. It includes design techniques, technologies, and information architecture.

Take the most misunderstood concept in the SEO world: the keyword. A keyword is a specific phrase someone types in when looking for more information, such as "Atlanta homes for sale." The search engine's goal is to point the way to accurate, high-quality content so the user can find out more on this subject.

If you're in the business of Atlanta homes for sale, it only makes sense to use this keyword. Your blog posts, videos, and other content would be a lot less useful and a lot harder to find if you avoided saying "Atlanta homes for sale" out of a misinformed belief that doing so is somehow "cheating."

So it is with everything that has come to define modern SEO:

  • Mobile-friendly design is good for SEO because many people look at websites on their smartphone
  • SSL encryption is good for SEO because it helps protect users against having sensitive data stolen
  • Video content is good for SEO because it is more engaging and easier to remember than text
  • Fast loading times are good for SEO because nobody wants to sit and wait for a website to work

When real estate pros embrace SEO, they are choosing to align with the conclusions of thousands of hours of research into what makes a website helpful, useful, and effective. If they don't do so, they willingly yield the advantage to somebody who will — which is precisely the goal search engine providers have in mind.

A decade ago, boogeyman stories about the dangers of "black hat SEO" led many businesses to misunderstand what digital marketing is all about. Today's SEO is professional and precise: with tools such as Delta Media Group's all-in-one solution, you can centralize your efforts and see the impact of your work unfold over weeks and months.

Here are some essential ways to make SEO work for you:

  • Create Helpful, Informative Content for Your Real Estate Website
    Your blog is one of the cornerstones of your SEO strategy. Everything you post showcases your expertise, gives insights into your personality, and previews the value you offer clients. You can promote posts on social media or through your email drip campaign to extend their reach.
  • Focus Your Content on What Your Future Clients Search For
    It's easy to learn an SEO keyword tool that gives you real clarity on what topics people care about. You'll also get estimates of how many people search for a given term each month. Think about your ideal client: Buyer or seller? Millennial? Empty-nester? Then look for topics you can discuss relevant to their unique needs.
  • Design Your Real Estate Website to Be Easy to Use
    A well-designed real estate website demonstrates that you value others' time even before they become your customers. "Ease of use" has a number of factors. Navigation should be straightforward, making information simpler to find. Quick load times are a must, and your layout should adapt to mobile users' screens.

Combine your SEO with digital marketing automation — such as automatic social media updates — and you'll get results all the faster. Automation is the key to expanding your digital marketing without spending hours on the details. DeltaNET offers you a seamless, integrated solution you can trust. To find out more about real estate SEO and digital marketing that really works, contact us today.

February
16

With each day, more and more real estate clients find their next home — and their trusted real estate agent — through online sources. In fact, according to the National Association of REALTORS®, 52 percent of recent buyers found their home online. Without a dependable, high-performance website, it's more difficult to connect with the modern client.

And your website is so much more than a place for clients to shop for homes! The best websites provide a seamless experience, allowing clients to learn about you, find answers to their key real estate questions, fall in love with the communities where you sell homes, and connect with your brand on a variety of online platforms. In other words, it's a lead-generation machine. Still wondering if you need to invest in a website? Read on to find out why real estate agents need websites too.

  • Establish Your Brand and Online Presence
    When a prospective client wants to learn more about you, your brand, and what you have to offer, they typically start by searching online for more information. At its core, your real estate website is where people can find that information and so much more. Establishing your online presence is crucial because that's where most people will be looking for you. Without a website, it will be hard for prospects to find the information they seek, which means they're likely to move on to the next agent.

  • Connecting Buyers with Homes
    Once buyers have an idea of what you have to offer as an agent, you want to make it as easy as possible for them to take the next step. And that next step will almost always be starting to search for homes. With MLS listing search on your website, buyers can search for their perfect home in all of the neighborhoods where you do business. Adding virtual tours to your listings is another great way to accommodate clients, in an era when so many people are shopping for and selling homes online.

  • Become a Real Estate Resource
    If you want to win new business online, sharing your real estate expertise is the perfect place to start. There are countless potential clients out there looking for information on buying, selling, and maintaining homes. By including a blog on your website, you can become a trusted resource for prospects and clients alike. All of your real estate content can live on your website, making it easy for clients to find the information they need to approach their next real estate transaction with confidence. By providing that content, you build trust and show clients why you're the right agent for them.

  • Showcase the Communities Where You Do Business
    In addition to learning about homes and finding general real estate info, shoppers will visit your website to learn more about the communities where you sell homes. This is a huge opportunity to help them fall in love with neighborhoods by using your content to showcase what makes each neighborhood special. Savvy buyers know that finding the right neighborhood is a big part of finding the perfect home, and your website can help them do both.

  • Building Your Own Brand
    If you work for a larger real estate company, it can be easy to get lost in the shuffle when prospects visit the company website. A custom, agent-focused website allows you to build your own personal brand while still remaining part of the larger company brand.

  • A Hub for Your Whole Online Presence
    A diverse online marketing presence is crucial for success, and your website ties all of your marketing together. When you make a social post, write a new blog, or create a YouTube video, it's great to include a link back to your website. And when clients visit your website, they should easily be able to find links to the rest of your online presence.

  • Share Client Reviews and Testimonials
    When a potential client is looking for real estate agents online, "social proof" like reviews and testimonials often play an important role in the agent they choose. Your real estate website is a natural place to share reviews and testimonials from satisfied clients, making it easy for prospects to see all you have to offer.

Whether you're new to the industry or an experienced veteran of the real estate world, an innovative, information-rich website is sure to help you grow your brand. With Delta Media Group's all-in-one solution, you can use custom domains on your own website and take advantage of dozens of reliable tools to help grow your online presence. Our team is here to help you create a dynamic website that flawlessly represents your brand online. Contact us to learn more.

February
4

In case you missed the latest webinar from RETechnology and Delta Media Group: "What's Your Zillow Plan," we have provided the video recording above for you to check out. 

Real estate agents have long looked warily at Zillow, a media company that aggregates data on more than 110 million American homes through its website. Since Zillow's launch in 2006, millions of home buyers and prospective sellers have diverted to begin their research on its website and app. Zillow's next move is even more disruptive: It has become a brokerage and is hiring real estate agents.

What can real estate agents do to prepare?

You can do what Zillow can't. This webinar takes a deep dive into actionable steps agents can take to Zillow-proof their business. In the process, you also will learn how to close more deals in 2021.

Marilyn Wilson (RETechnology) and Franklin Stoffer (Delta Media Group) walk you through, step-by-step, how Delta Media can help you beat Zillow – and other disruptors – in your local marketplace.

By watching this webinar recording, you'll get a chance to check out everything explained first-hand and try it free for 30 days. To learn more about the 30-day free trial, click here.

Interested in Zillow-proofing your business? 

Click on the following link to download the handout referenced in the webinar: http://dmgre.us/cdf/muy22nh.

January
14

79% of customers trust online reviews just as much as personal recommendations. In younger demographics, the figure can be even higher — up to 91% for consumers aged 18-35. Regardless of age, most people read online reviews, and many customers won't buy until they've read a review.

Don't think online reviews only matter for e-commerce stores: 87% of consumers used them to compare local businesses in 2020, up from 81% in 2019. Only a meager 48% of all respondents would even consider using a business with fewer than four stars.

What does it all mean? If you don't have online reviews, you don't exist!

When your neighbors go online to get help buying or selling a home, odds are they type in "real estate agents near me." On Google, that provides a list of agents along with their average star rating — and easy access to their reviews. Sites like Yelp also centralize reviews, serving as a proxy of a company's reputation.

In effect, your future customers use the same methods to compare real estate agents as they do to compare pizza places or burger joints. Say what you will about whether that's fair or not: to excel in a fast-paced real estate market, you need to find ways to use it to your advantage.

The best way to do that is to make sure you have customer reviews right on your website.

Customer Reviews On Your Website Build Trust and Motivate Leads

You can't stop people from looking on Google, Yelp, or wherever else they might search around — and most big review platforms also penalize you if you incentivize reviews in any way. But you are always entitled to ask for reviews, and all of your best online reviews should be displayed prominently on your website.

Some great places to showcase reviews include:

  • The footer that appears on each page of your site

  • Your website's "Contact" and "About Me" pages

  • Your calendar or scheduling app, if you use one

  • Your social media accounts and YouTube channel

When you give online reviews pride of place, you are doing more than just encouraging more business for yourself. You are adding value by creating ways for leads to make an informed decision. That's something everyone can appreciate, even though not everybody who sees your website will ultimately work with you.

Let's consider some of the benefits of using online reviews on your website:

  1. Reviews Foster Trust
    Your website is a terrific way to introduce yourself. It helps people understand who you are and what you can do for them. But that doesn't mean they want to take your word for it! Reviews function as social proof, giving greater weight to everything you say. When leads see that others "just like them" have had great experiences with you, they feel more comfortable reaching out. That helps you build rapport and work together.

  2. Reviews Help People Avoid Scams
    On the flip side, remember that many of your clients will be first-time buyers or sellers. They may have limited or no experience working with a real estate agent. Being unfamiliar with the industry and its credentials, they are on guard for foul play. Reviews on your website are among the most important trust signals you can send. Your site may help guide others so they know what to look for in a reputable expert.

  3. Reviews Draw More Website Traffic
    Online reviews have a major role in driving more traffic. Yes, reviews posted on Google or Yelp may inspire more people to check your site, but it goes beyond this. The reviews you post and promote help search engines to recognize you as an established and trusted local authority. Over time, posting reviews can help your website become more visible when prospects search for topics related to your business.

  4. Reviews Act as "Tiebreakers"
    When two businesses seem similar from the outside, which one gets the sale? Usually, it's the one with a bigger roster of positive, credible reviews. This goes back to the idea that many future clients won't know the ins and outs of real estate — they depend on their agent to keep them informed. Your reviews highlight your successes, skills, customer service, and other points of comparison that could be harder to spot otherwise!

Whether you're new to real estate or an old hand, it's valuable to make customer reviews an ongoing part of your practice. That means recognizing the right time to ask for reviews, following up, and cultivating reviews on your own website, as well as responding to the reviews you collect on other platforms.

With its state-of-the-art real estate CRM, social media, and email marketing automation, DeltaNET is the AI-driven premier pro-tech solution to energize your promotional efforts. To find out more, contact us today.

January
12

Not all websites are created equal. Just as no two real estate agents are the same, each agent's website highlights the differences between other agents vying for the marketplace. Though content is king, it's important to understand that even your website's domain name has a significant impact on your agency's performance and perception. 

9 Benefits & Advantages of Having a Custom Domain Name

1. It's a No-Brainer
Why should you have a custom domain name? Why not? It's simple, especially when you're trying to encourage clients to access it. Instead of asking clients to remember a confusing web address, simply adding a ".com" to your business name makes engagement effortless. It also makes it easier for clients to find you passively, for instance, when they search for you online. If they search "John Smith" and find "johnsmith.com," they'll know that they've found the correct address.

2. It Gives You a Leg-Up on the Competition
Do you know how many of the other agents in your market have their own custom domain names? Chances are high there are many which simply use web address provided by a hosting site. By locking down your custom domain name, you have another leg-up on the competition by demonstrating your legitimacy.

3. It Demonstrates Legitimacy
How does having a custom domain address demonstrate legitimacy? First, it shows that you're using the latest technologies. Though websites are nothing new, you'd be surprised how many agents still do not use custom domain names despite the relative ease of obtaining one. It also helps a user feel more comfortable following your link. "johnsmith.com" appears much more legitimate than "johnsmith.domainhosting.com."

4. It Increases Your SEO Ranking
SEO. Three letters your small business needs to know regardless of which industry you serve. If you're online, Search Engine Optimization is essential to your success. With so many other agencies selling homes in your area, you need the best search ranking possible on Google. Having a custom domain is one way to increase your SEO ranking in the eyes of Google's algorithm.

5. It Enables Custom Email Addresses
Similar to your web address itself, your email addresses are small yet important elements of how your business is perceived. Sure, an @gmail.com or @outlook.com address will work just the same, but having an @johnsmith.com address will once again enhance your legitimacy and reassure customers that you're the real deal.

6. It Elevates Your Brand
The brand you've cultivated in the real world can be easily integrated into the digital world with a custom website address. It also helps your brand consistency to have a legitimate domain name that matches your other online profiles, like your social media accounts.

7. It Enhances Your Branding
"Branding" is different from "brand." Your brand is the business; your branding is what your business does. For instance, you may be a luxury real estate agent, but the content you supply that highlights your listings is an act of branding. A custom domain name is an investment. When clients click that link, they're taken to your website to interact with you through your branding. If you're trying to wow your luxury home market, for example, your domain name is the doorway to these interactions.

8. It Opens Potential for New Leads
You don't need an open house to generate new "walk-in" leads. As you strengthen your website's content with a custom domain, you increase the chances that new customers will organically visit your site when they find it through a search engine. With the right tools, you can convert these visits to potential leads by continuing to engage them after they've left your site.

9. It May Be the Future of Virtual Businesses 
Thousands of new websites are created each day, which means many domain names become unavailable every instant. It's clear that more and more agents are adopting custom domain names. Keep in mind other agents may also scoop up domain names that you're interested in. 

Delta Media Group's digital marketing platform will easily integrate your custom domain, ensuring you reap the maximum benefits from your online presence. If you lack a custom domain name, we encourage you to consider these advantages and discover how quickly a new website address can benefit your agency.

October
21

Building Your Brand Online
When you tell a story, every detail matters. The more vibrant the portrait you paint, the more likely the story's receiver becomes invested in its outcome.

This fact is true when you're telling a traditional story, and it's equally important in real estate storytelling. The story you tell through your blog, your real estate website, or social media channels is your best opportunity to help shoppers fall in love with your local markets and your business.

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