As I write this article, I find it curi- ous to note that about half the real estate news stories I read this past week related to low housing inventory and how to get more listings. All the articles were coming from the perspective of things you "can do now to get more listings." While I appreciate the reality that you need to take action now to get more listings, I want to approach the topic of low housing inventory from an entirely different perspective.
For over 10 years, I have seen a problem with the residential real estate industry as a whole.
What is the problem I am talking about?
It is the fact that a good number of real estate professionals, potentially the vast majority, do nothing to effectively market themselves and build relationships with people until it is too late. Too many real estate professionals do very little, or even nothing, to effectively market themselves over the months and years that proceed a person, couple, or family making the decision to buy or sell a home.
So what is the solution?
For quite a few years, I have been working to build the tools necessary to help solve the problem, and I want to outline some of these tools here in this article. These are tools that real estate professionals can begin using today that will not only help them get more listings now, but will also help them continue to get more list- ings for months and years to come.
So, let me dig into some of these tools and explain how they can help!
Market Trending Emails
(Delta's Market Watch Reports)
Very few people, almost none, wake up one morning and decide to buy a home in an unknown market or neighborhood. Nearly everyone who purchases a home spends months, sometimes years, re- searching the neighborhoods and markets they are interested in living in. They follow the home prices, pay attention to the home styles, watch how quickly homes sell, research the schools, parks, etc. This is one of the primary reasons I created Delta Media Group's Market Watch Reports well over a decade ago.
One of the best tools that real estate professionals can offer to everyone is market trending emails. Even people that are not in the market to buy or sell like getting monthly or quarterly market trending emails, simply so they can stay in the know and have up-to-date information. These emails should include nice visuals such as market trending graphs, a sample of what is currently for sale, an example of what has recently sold, what is pending, etc.
What is best about market trending emails is that it keeps the real estate sales professional in digital contact with their sphere of contacts and past clients, which results in a higher probability that they will get their future business. When you stay in touch, you remain at the forefront of potential customer's memories, and they'll think of you first when it's time to buy or sell.
Property Watch Emails
(Delta's Property-Based Market Watch Reports)
If I were a real estate professional, I would sign all my past clients up for a monthly or quarterly email, providing them with data similar to the market trending emails but with the addition of their estimated property value. This is what Delta's Property-Based Market Watch Reports are.
Every homeowner is curious to know how the value of their home changes over time and what homes are selling for around them. This type of report provides that information to them.
Think about it! The best place to get future business is from past clients. The only type of referral is one from a past client. So staying in relevant contact with past clients is critical and the best way to do it is with valuable information related to their home. It also makes it easy to reach out and ask for a referral and to start a conversation.
Ongoing Behavioral Driven Email Campaigns
(Delta's My Customer for Life Campaign)
Behavioral and Artificial Intelligence (AI) driven email campaigns are some of the best generic campaigns you can do because you can put all contacts into these types of campaigns.
Online retailers have been doing this for years. If they know who you are and how you interact with their products, you will receive marketing based on your interests. You need to be doing the same thing.
About four years ago, I had the Delta team start writing three new weekly articles: one related to homeownership, one related to home buying, and one related to home selling. Today we have a library of over 600 unique articles.
The best part of this type of system is that it is AI-driven based on customer behavior and interests. Depending on what customers do and which articles they interact with
will dictate the content of their next email. These are ongoing, automated, up-to-date, individually personalized marketing emails that are loved by customers and branded by the real estate professional.
The most important thing is that you start doing something today. From there, you can continue to build a culture in your business, and with those that work with you or for you, either as an individual sales associate or as part of a company, office, or team leader.
If you are a Delta Media Group® client, here are four direct action items you should address from the perspective of a sales associate:
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.
It wasn't that long ago when most phone service providers enforced strict limits on text messages. Most users could send 500 or even just 100 a month. Now, such rules are unthinkable — the average American sends and receives around 85 texts a day. With 96% of all U.S. adults owning a cell phone, virtually everyone sends and receives texts. What's more, the average text message is read within three minutes.
Those facts are of great interest to relationship-driven industries like real estate. 75% of consumers surveyed say they are okay with receiving texts from brands. With its astonishing 90% open rate, texting shows signs of giving email a run for its money as the marketing technique with the lowest costs and highest campaign ROI.
If you're not using text marketing yet, it's not too late — but now's definitely the time to start!
The Benefits of Texting for Real Estate Professionals
Real estate is all about relationships. Once you incorporate it into your workflow, text marketing is a natural extension of that mindset. From leads to clients to former customers, all can benefit from and respond to texting.
Let's consider some of the top advantages:
Texting is Personal
The great majority of texts are legitimate, one-to-one communications from the people your leads genuinely want to hear from. When contacts opt in, they invite you into a much more casual and personal space than their email box. You, in turn, can speak to them with clarity and authenticity, making a real connection.
Texting is Responsive
Real estate pros have long understood the faster you can respond to a lead's first attempt to reach out, the more likely you are to get an appointment scheduled. Texting allows you to answer others even faster than a phone call. Plus, you can do it without completely interrupting the flow of your busy workday.
Texting is Universal
Consider the stats above — 96% of American adults have a cell phone. They don't need the latest fancy Apple smartphone to send and receive texts. Even the simplest phones with the most budget-friendly plans can generally receive unlimited texts. You never have to make any assumptions about your contact's technology.
Texting Uses Automation Effectively
Some marketing techniques, like email, are a natural fit for automation. Others, like a phone call, had better be done manually. Text messaging falls somewhere between the extremes. While a personal text is often the best bet, you can automate certain "event-based" texts, and they will still feel perfectly natural.
Text Message Marketing: From Beginner to Advanced
If you use texts in your day-to-day life, you have skills that will serve you well in text marketing.
The key to text messaging is context. If you send messages only when it makes sense, you'll avoid having contacts opt out. Texting is a two-way street: your goal is to combine great timing with interesting content that will get recipients to respond more often. To do that, you need to know your clients well.
Let's look at ideas for taking texting to the next level:
Automate Your Initial Opt-In Texts
To stay on the right side of the law, it's crucial to ensure contacts affirmatively opt in for ongoing texts. You can automate this process using CRM data, ensuring that open house attendees and those who register for updates on your local listings receive an opt-in invitation right away — when they're most likely to consent.
Make it Easy to Set Appointments by Text
Many people prefer the convenience of text to the rigmarole of a phone call. Some people dodge phone calls to avoid high-pressure sales situations. By texting leads a link to a scheduling app, they can put themselves on your calendar in a low-friction environment.
Ask Questions in Your Texts
Every time you get a response to a text, you open the door to extending that relationship. The best way to incorporate questions is to make them meaningful, like "What do you like most about the house you just toured?" Most recipients prefer to dash off an answer rather than risk seeming rude.
DeltaNET customers have the opportunity to deploy text messaging campaigns with confidence from right within our high-performance, AI-driven real estate CRM. To find out more or get started, contact us today.
Being successful in real estate means finding ways to keep the conversation going long after the first handshake is over. However, with all of the people you meet, it's nearly impossible to grow those relationships, run your current business, and still have time to sleep at night.
What's the Answer?
Delta Media Group comes to the rescue with the latest addition to its DeltaNET 6 toolbox with pre-built, automated email drip campaigns. We make it easy to stay in front of your clients with targeted email campaigns, offering them precisely the information they want to see.
Email drip campaigns add a dose of high-octane to your current marketing strategy. Stay in touch with clients by sending timely, relevant messages to your client base.
Harley Wolfarth walks you through the campaigns and action plans system found in DeltaNET 6 in this week's Tech Tuesday.