Why Email is Still the King of Real Estate

There’s so much noise around social media and its lead generation capabilities that you’d be forgiven for thinking the medium has overtaken email as the ultimate online marketing channel for real estate agents.

From Facebook to LinkedIn and beyond, there’s an expectation to pimp your product across all platforms, at all times, leaving the more traditional efforts of email marketing billowing in the dust behind you like a rogue tumbleweed.

For those of us in the industry, following these trends and analysing the data is essential for our development, and my marketing team have spent hours trawling the numbers in an attempt to discover which marketing channel reigns supreme.

What we’ve discovered is that despite the hype around social media, when it comes to converting and nurturing leads, email comes out on top time and time again. This could really throw a spanner in the works for the agents who are progressively looking to social as the backbone of their marketing plans.

Do Your (Number) Crunches

The data coming out of leading technology market research firm Radicati speaks of the superior organic reach that email provides compared to social. They’ve discovered that an email is 5x more likely to be seen than an advertising message delivered via Facebook and that 98% of top rating agents in the US (earners over USD $100,000) tout email as the best real estate marketing channel for converting leads.

These are some mind-blowing figures which are backed up by research coming out of The Digital Marketing Association, who’ve found that email has a whopping 66% conversion rate – far higher than social and direct marketing.

In the Mix

One should never disregard social media as part of a holistic marketing mix. It’s an excellent and well documented way to showcase your personality and create an environment of trust with your contacts. What I’m saying is that it might be time to start refocusing your efforts back into email – a medium which transcends the mere realm of ROI and truly engages the more than 4.5 billion email accounts out there patiently waiting for your delivery.

Let’s Convert

So how can a pragmatic agent use this information to their advantage? It might sound like a corny analogy but you should think of email as the engine of your car, fuelling the rest of the mechanics along your road to success. Let email power the rest of your channels and not only will your lead conversion rates increase but you’ll be engaging the existing leads in your database who don’t necessarily have visibility of your social presence.

Use It or Lose It

Speak to a professional about how to make email work for you. Just because the data tells us that it’s is a winner doesn’t mean you can bang out any old thing and expect to be crowned Agent of the Year.

From punchy subject lines and CTAs to whether or not your emails are intuitively automated or audience segmented, there are plenty of variables that will affect the success of your campaign.

Get it right though and you’ll be left with no doubt that email is still the king of real estate. (more…)

How to Build Stronger Relationships with Word of Mouth

Despite all the advertising and technology that can help you gain more listings, there is one avenue that gains more traction than any other:

Personal recommendations.

Word of mouth has been the leading way of gaining leads in all fields of business. This is particularly true for real estate.

So, how do you ensure your clients are recommending you to their friends, family and neighbours?

How do Your Clients Answer these Questions

It’s important that you think about how your client will answer these three questions:

  • Who sold your house?
  • How was the agent to deal with?
  • What was the result?

The best way to get confidence in these anwsers is to stay in touch with past clients. Maintai strong relationships with clients after a sale and they are more likely to become sales ambassadors of your personal brand. When they are inevitably asked who they used for their property sale, they are more likely to give you a glowing review.

With the appearance of online agent review sites, such as RateMyAgent, it’s more important to reinforce your brand image by developing a healthy digital reputation as well.

By running post-sale life cycle communications via email, you are using a cheap and effective way of maintaining a relationship, while providing relevant content to individual clients.

These updates can be automated to go out weekly, fortnightly or monthly (or any time frame that suits) with personalised content, and can include market updates, recent auction results, investment opportunities, personal results and other real estate news.

Maintaining relationships with emial campaigns can be cheaper than paper ads and letterbox drops, so why would you not employ a communication channel that cuts through the noise and lands in your clients’ inbox?

The advantages of gaining more reach via your digital communications is clear. The secret lies in your email campaigns.