With so many digital marketing tactics available today, it can be easy to forget about more traditional tools for reaching your clients and potential leads. But when used correctly, tools like direct marketing can still hold significant value to your real estate business!
Direct marketing is a great way to re-engage older leads, keep in touch with existing clients, and reach people who might spend less time online, all while also diversifying your marketing plans. As always, any marketing success depends on understanding who you're trying to reach and offering real value to clients and consumers. So, it's crucial that you know exactly what to do – and, more importantly, in some cases, what not to do – when it comes to direct marketing campaigns. Let's take a closer look at the most common do's and don'ts of direct marketing, with tips that can help you maximize your return on investment.
Getting the Most out of Your Direct Marketing Campaigns
The Do's of Modern Direct Marketing
• Know Your Audience and Have a Plan for Reaching Them
Direct marketing works best when you have a plan for who you want to reach and know how you can capture their attention. A postcard or flyer that's too general is unlikely to make an impact. If you're trying to reach buyers, it's important to include information that appeals specifically to their needs. The same goes for sellers. It's better to create a variety of direct marketing materials than to take a one size fits all approach.
• Make Sure That Your Direct Marketing Always Offers Value
While there are many elements to consider in order to maximize the appeal of your direct marketing, offering value matters most when it comes to a return on your investment. So, how do you provide value? Provide informative content that shows your audience what they can expect when choosing your real estate business. Help them understand their local real estate market, how their home fits within that market if they're planning to sell, or the types of homes that are available if they plan to buy. In addition to capturing the attention of your audience, offering value also helps demonstrate the expertise of you and your agents.
• Avoid Clutter to Make Your Direct Marketing Content Easy to Consume and Absorb
The right mix of text, images, logos, and colors makes a big difference in how easy your direct marketing content is to consume. And when you make your content easier to consume, your audience is more likely to follow through by reading it all. There are plenty of ways to approach the layout of your direct marketing, so the real key is making sure that the page isn't too cluttered with information and images.
• Use Localized Information That Focuses on Specific Markets
If your direct marketing relies upon general, statewide real estate data, it's likely to end up in the junk pile before it even gets a cursory glance from your audience. That means it's critical to focus on specific markets with localized information that's relevant to the recipient. You can showcase a list of homes that an agent has sold, comparing the sale price and initial price. Or feature homes sold in a specific neighborhood, with accompanying photos and location information. For buyers, a list of historic home prices in a particular neighborhood that highlights recent trends in value can be a great way to add appeal. There are a ton of different ways to provide valuable information, as long as you remember to keep it as local as possible.
• Use Calls to Action to Encourage Your Audience to Take the Next Step
Providing contact information so your audience can connect with your business is essential, but it will take more than just basic info to achieve your direct marketing goals. That's why it's so important to include a specific, targeted call to action that actively encourages your audience to take the next step. The call to action should clarify what those next steps are and should be tailored to build upon the valuable information you include with your direct marketing.
What Not to Do with Direct Marketing Campaigns
• Don't Use Low-Quality Images
As with most types of marketing, capturing attention is crucial to success when you're sending postcards, flyers, or other direct marketing materials. You wouldn't use fuzzy, low-quality images to promote a listing, and you shouldn't do it with direct marketing, either. High-quality photos will make your direct marketing look more professional, appealing, and intriguing, so it's worth the investment to use professional-quality images for your campaigns.
• Avoid Getting Too Fancy With Fonts
While it can be tempting to use a variety of different fonts to highlight different parts of the text on your direct marketing, it's better to resist the temptation. Too many different fonts can make the text difficult to read and make it harder to focus on what you're trying to convey with your marketing. For a better chance of success, pick one or two fonts to use for each piece of direct marketing, then customize those fonts with bold, underlined, or italic text when you need to make something pop out from the page.
• Don't Overwhelm With Too Much Text
It's important to include valuable information with your direct marketing, but too much information can be overwhelming and leave your marketing sitting at the top of the trash can. When the recipient of your direct marketing sees a wall of unbroken text packed into a postcard, they'll be less likely to read it. Instead, use shorter copy in larger type, and break it up into easy to consume segments with clear headlines that help guide the reader. The easier you make it to read your content, the more likely you are to generate results.
• Don't Forget to Integrate Your Direct Marketing with Your Real Estate CRM
Direct marketing may be an old-school tool, but that doesn't mean that you can't use new-school tech to get it done. Your real estate CRM, like DeltaNET® 6, can help you choose who to reach through direct marketing and keep track of your results. The DeltaNET can also help you automate your marketing plans, meaning that's one less thing you'll have to worry about during your already jam-packed days.
How the Right Marketing Mix Can Help Grow Your Real Estate Business
Direct marketing can become a valuable part of your overall marketing strategy, so long as you have the right plan in place. It's essential to have a variety of ways to reach clients and cultivate leads because every person you're trying to reach has their own unique preferences. Even for people who do most of their research online, sending something via direct mail can help your business stand out from the competition and remain at the front of would-be client's minds when they start their next real estate search. The trick is finding the right mix of marketing tactics for your business in order to maximize both your audience and your potential for converting leads.
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:
A blog is a gold standard for generating traffic, leads, and building relationships. Blogging keeps you top-of-mind with your readers while positions you as an expert through helpful, informative content. Also, when you blog regularly, you benefit from an SEO standpoint. Google favors websites with relevant, unique, and engaging content added.
These sites are often indexed more frequently, and visibility in the search engines tends to improve.
At any given time, there may be thousands of people in your market who are just "thinking about" buying or selling a home. Each person may be weeks, months, or even years away from making a decision. But as they are getting closer to one, they go online.
The internet has provided a phenomenal way for anyone to learn about nearly any subject. When people have problems to solve or tough questions, they use Google to find answers.
That decision – to start gathering information out on the Web – is where a prospective customer's needs and your expertise come together. The way you put yourself on the radar is content marketing.
Content marketing is an approach to digital marketing that focuses on posting helpful, useful, informative content on your website. Most of this content will come in the form of blogs, but it can also encompass photos, videos, infographics, reports, and much more.
What's in a list? Ideally, as many subscribers as possible! Your email list should be one of your most valuable marketing assets as a real estate agent, allowing you to stay in touch, share your expertise, build strong relationships with your subscribers, and generate leads. Almost everyone has an email address and most people check their email multiple times per day, which means that email is a direct line to your audience.
Whether you're building an email list from scratch or looking to extract more value from your existing list, there's plenty you can do right now to help your email marketing create customers for life. Take your email marketing to the next level, with our guide to building an engaged email list for real estate agents.
Set Targets for Email Marketing Goals
Before you can get busy building an engaged email list, it's well worth sitting down to lay out your goals. These can be long-term goals, like hitting certain subscriber number milestones and cultivating a Millennial audience, or short-term goals like increasing open rates on specific email types. Your goals are likely to evolve as your email list grows, and that's a good thing! Every milestone has meaning, and there's always more you can do to grow your list.
There's no doubt about it: you don't just want Google to like your real estate website, you want Google to LOVE it. Why? When Google loves your website, you get a higher ranking in search results for real estate businesses and topics in your area. Most prospects don't look beyond the first few links on the first page of results, so a higher search ranking ultimately means more leads and more business. Fortunately, this love story doesn't have to be complicated.
Delta Media Group is known for having the #1 search engine optimization (SEO) platform in the real estate industry by a significant margin. Our team helps real estate businesses with search engine optimization (SEO) every day. Let's take a look at ten ways to make Google fall in love with your website.
When you use the words "location, location, location" speaking one-on-one with a real estate client, you're most likely talking about a specific home or property. However, the phrase takes on a whole new meaning when it relates to your marketing strategy. Real estate pros using hyperlocal content as a part of their online marketing strategies target neighborhoods, homes, local businesses, and events to draw the attention of a specific audience to their communities.
Hyperlocal content is one of the biggest keys to attracting a loyal audience for your real estate website and carves out a unique space for your business online.
Hyperlocal content is an essential element in the online marketing strategies we create for our clients at Delta Media Group. Let's take a closer look at how to use hyperlocal content to grow your real estate business.
Wouldn't it be nice to draw countless qualified leads to your real estate business, without paying for ad space or picking up the phone to cold call? That's the promise of content marketing, and it's one of many reasons why content should be a crucial element of your real estate marketing strategy.
Your content is waiting to increase visibility, add value, educate, and ultimately turn prospects into clients.
Content marketing is a big part of what we do at Delta Media Group. Today, we're going to take a closer look at how you can use content to grow your real estate business.
Why Content Marketing Matters in Real Estate
Content is an important marketing tool no matter the industry, but it's especially valuable in real estate. The vast majority of people start searches online--whether they're looking for a home or working to find an agent. Your content should demonstrate your expertise, share valuable tips, highlight market areas, and show prospects why you're the right choice for their needs. Content is also a key element in search engine optimization (SEO), which makes it easier for prospects to find your business online. Ultimately, content creates qualified leads, which is why it's a must-have for REALTORS®.
Just like Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds, Lois Lane and Clark Kent, or spaghetti and meatballs, some couples are a natural fit.
The same holds true for search engine optimization (SEO) and content.
For people who are new to online marketing strategies, they might assume SEO and content exclude one another. That could not be farther from the truth.
Great content is a key pillar of SEO success, and SEO helps prospects find all of the content that you work hard to create. When you harness the power of their complementary personalities, the perfect match is created, and unbelievable results occur.
Let's take a closer look at why SEO and content are the "IT" couple when it comes to online success for your real estate business.
Video marketing is one of the most powerful tools real estate agents have at their disposal to generate leads, build their brands, but most of all--help their clients buy and sell homes. Videos help showcase the features of listed homes that make them stand out from others in the same neighborhood.
If you're new to the idea of adding videos to your existing marketing strategy, it may be a little intimidating. Not to worry, there are tools available to automate the process and to get the job done with little--if any--hassle.
We've put together this quick look at three ways to make real estate videos work for you.
Every modern real estate business needs its own website, from the smallest brokerages to the biggest brands. Your website is the face of your business online, and the place where customers come to learn what you have to offer. But it's also so much more. Check out our ten reasons why real estate agents need their own website.
Brokerages and teams with 50 agents and under can have the same technology as large enterprise brokerages.
Our CRM system is built specifically for real estate professionals to manage your contacts more effectively, close more deals and provide better service.
Brokerages and teams with 50 agents and under can have the same technology as large enterprise brokerages.
There are so many great reasons to have a real estate website for your business and provide all that the modern real estate client requires when shopping for a home. Contact us to learn more about our real estate website design, and all of the marketing tools we use to help grow your business.
In today's digital world, a website is essential for your real estate business: No one will believe you're a "real business" if they can't find you online. But the value of digital marketing goes further: Done right, it energizes your real estate practice with a consistent flow of buyers and sellers ready to do business.
Many real estate agents start out unsure which digital marketing tools suit their needs. They may post on social media or write blog posts for a while, only to discover getting traction is more challenging than they hoped.
Consistency is key, and a marketing mix where several digital techniques work together is more effective than any one approach. To move forward, consider these seven tools that have paved the way to success for real estate agents like you:
Email marketing is, without a doubt, one of the biggest keys to success for real estate agents.
When you meet someone, they may not be ready to immediately use your services. They may be considering buying or selling a home, but need months before they'll take action. Often, that means your potential business slips away.
Email marketing allows you to foster trust and rapport with your future clients. You can use your subscription-only email list to provide people with targeted content about real estate topics and trends.
As the weeks and months roll by, this strengthens your brand as a recognized expert. That means you're top of mind and the first person they are likely to reach out to when they decide to move.
Consider the benefits:
Real estate videos are one of the best marketing tools for your business today. Real estate pros like you find video marketing is a good fit because it lets you show off your listings and professional knowledge equally. Videos work well on mobile devices, gives your website the "action" still photography does not, and provides additional content for you to share socially.
According to a Virtulets.com, 73 percent of homeowners say they are more than likely to hire a listing agent who uses video to market their homes.
Today's modern real estate client demands technology whether buying or selling a home. There is no argument video marketing is an essential part of your total online marketing strategy. Video marketing allows you to make a more personal connection with your clients.
Videos created correctly gain you favor with your clients and Google. However, done poorly and they could become an obstacle for success.