How to Supercharge Your Real Estate Marketing Strategy
Inbound marketing has essentially changed the way people do real estate business. Rather than cold-calling and plastering billboard ads all over the place, inbound gets the message across to people who are already looking for what you have to offer. Instead of annoying customers with unwanted ads or emails and fighting for attention in an already crowded industry, this type of marketing converts leads into clients with the help of content. And not just any type of content, but a perfectly tailored one. It’s time to make a change in your marketing strategy, get more qualified leads and become part of the conversation by drawing people in. Wonder where to start? Read on.
Define Your Ideal Customer
Since inbound marketing is focused on customers, you will first need to figure out who you’re trying to reach with your real estate strategy. In other words: your buyers personas. It might seem a bit counterproductive since agents are expected to work with everybody who needs their services, this will actually help you define an audience and get more quality leads down the way.
Start by analyzing your current clients and their needs. Next, take a look at your former customers, and track back their feedback, positive or negative. We’re talking about actual research, not assumptions or educated guesses. If you want to have a clear prototype in your head and on paper, use facts not fiction.
Include as many details about them as you can, from demographics to goals and pain-points. Work on your profiles until you start noticing trends. Hubspot.com advocates that a detailed customer profile will help focus your time better and “allow for alignment across the organization”.
After you’ve identified your ideal customers, it’s time to refine your content to draw them in. A buyer persona also helps you figure out where they are in their journey and how to attract them to your real estate business.
Get High Quality Leads
Here’s the deal: content is what inbound marketing is all about. It comes in many forms, from blog posts, to emails, videos or webinars, and social media posting. This means it’s time to segment your buyers according to the purchase phase they’re in.
Maybe your clients have just started thinking about relocating or buying a second house. Your blog articles can educate them on how to prepare for such a big transition, what dangers lay ahead or what architectural style fits their lifestyle. You have to become an adviser, share information and solve problems without ever mentioning your company or real estate business.
At this stage, nobody wants a real estate ad shoved in their faces – they are just searching for information and are trying to make up their minds. But they might respond to a call-to-action elegantly placed at the end of your article.
Educate on Real Estate Business
Once a customer begins to actively search for a house in your neighborhood and expresses his intention to buy or sell (using certain keywords in their Google searches), it’s time to meet them half-way. Bring forth an interesting whitepaper, invite them to download an eBook about, let’s say, “Common mistakes house sellers make in Saint Jose” or entice them with a comparison video on neighborhoods and amenities for their desired area.
“Clearly explain your offer, ask for certain information in exchange and deliver on your promise.”
Kaboom! You have a new lead and a very warm one, for that matter. It’s a client who has expressed interest in your real estate business and is receptive to the solutions you are offering. And he or she has arrived at this point without being bullied into it. Depending on what type of information you offered, you can now get in touch with a follow-up email, phone call or further their journey by redirecting them to a testimonial page.
Either way, the decision is theirs. Based solely on your carefully tailored blog content, you were able to offer valuable advice and become trustworthy to clients looking for information, give a solution to their problem once they realized they had one and convince that your real estate business is the best at implementing that solution.
Of course, inbound is not only about blogging. Actually, blog posts are just a small part of your content strategy, but a very efficient one. Next, you should…
Optimize Your Website
Having a website is key to maximizing your online presence and exposure. Research has shown that almost 90% of homebuyers look for information online well in advance to the actual purchase moment and are using their mobile devices to do that. So, add mobile-friendly to the equation, too.
Moreover, a website gives you the opportunity to build a personal relationship with your customers and diminish the importance of third-parties. We’ve already discussed how content can increase your overall visibility and it’s time to see how to optimize your website for that same purpose.
- Use long-tail keywords throughout your website. Figure out what keywords your buyers are using in their searches and imagine different variations on them. Aim for the more specific keyword phrases – long-tail – because they stand a better chance for a higher rank with less competition. Something like “buy townhouse los angeles” or “sell boston condominium fast” make for a good example. After you’ve decided on your set of keywords, use them naturally in every part of your website, from body text, to blogs or image ALT text.
- Add keywords to any relevant blog post that you create, email you send or social media post. Once you’ve settled on a SEO strategy, stick with it and be consistent.
Stop Shouting and Start Listening
Social media is the best place to get in touch with your clients and become part of the conversation, but first you will have to analyze their “social” behavior. Stop posting annoying ads and pushing people into visiting your website when they are not willing nor interested in doing that. Instead, listen to their conversations, look for patterns, learn how to address each individual social media channel, and when to post content.
“Being active on social media gives you the possibility to offer advice, share valuable information, spark interesting conversations and strengthen your real estate business.”
Also, try not to stress too much about being on all social media networks. Choose the ones where your customers are most active on. Maybe this will help:
- According to a PewResearch Center update on social media, “Facebook continues to be America’s most popular social networking platform”. Nearly eight-in-ten online Americans use Facebook, more than double the share that uses Twitter (24%), Pinterest (31%), Instagram (32%) or LinkedIn (29%).
- LinkedIn has remained popular with college graduates and high income earners
- 42% of Twitter users check their accounts on a daily basis
Blogging, optimizing your website for search engines and creating high quality content will bring you more interested searches and spark conversations around your brand. However, that won’t happen overnight. You will have to be committed and steadily grow in authority. Don’t forget to analyze every move you make, test new strategies, draw clients in with great content and move with confidence towards a new age in marketing.
Julia E. Miller
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