Whether you’re an established real estate agent, broker, realtor, or you’re just getting started, there are plenty of opportunities to build an audience and attract new clients and prospects into your real estate pipeline.
The National Association of Realtors (NAR) 2021 report found that only 69% of sales agents have a website. This represents just one of the massive opportunities you can leverage to outperform the competition.
Read on for 19 real estate marketing ideas that you can use to optimize your marketing channels, generate more leads and ramp up your real estate marketing business.
6 real estate digital marketing ideas
The NAR reported that the first step for 41% of new home buyers was to search online, and 95% of all buyers used web tools to search and evaluate properties at some point. Therefore, maintaining a high-quality online presence is vital to compete in today’s digital marketing world.
Here are six ways to do that, starting with creating a website.
1. Create a website
Your website is the cornerstone of your real estate business and provides prospects with information about you and your services. This is vital for building brand awareness and generating leads.
Your website should be easy to navigate, attractive and designed with your target audience in mind. For example, if your primary audience is first-home buyers, then you may want an exciting design with informative content that will provide value.
Here are some added ideas for your website:
Have a dedicated landing page. A great landing page that speaks to visitor intent can be a great way to extract contact information in return for helpful content (or a free service such as a valuation).
Optimize your website for mobile. According to NAR, up to 50% of all new home research was done via mobile in 2021. To ensure you don’t miss key opportunities, optimize your website for mobile so that it functions on any device.
Display your listings. Your website is the perfect place to show your listings. To excel, optimize each listing and keep them up to date – more on this below.
Include detailed bios for each of your agents. Whether you have a team or you’re a solo practice, include a detailed about page that introduces each team member to build a stronger connection with your audience.
Include automated answering services. Consider website chatbots, automatic Facebook messages and triggered email responses. These tools in your real estate sales stack can engage with potential clients 24 hours a day, enabling them to set up an appointment without speaking to you directly.
2. Create great content for inbound leads
Creating search engine optimized (SEO) content is essential for any real estate marketing strategy. SEO content helps Google recognize your site as an authoritative source, meaning you’re more likely to be displayed in the top search results.
Here are some real estate content ideas:
Create local guides. This could include infographics or neighborhood maps showing prospects local amenities, schools, transportation, dining and recreational establishments. These local guides are great for people interested in moving to your area and help you establish yourself as a local expert. Don’t forget to include a call-to-action (CTA) and contact information.
Publish a regular blog. Blogs help with SEO and are a great way to keep prospective clients up to date with new listings. They enable you to share relevant information that answers questions your audience may have. For example, you might publish a series that answers community questions like, “Should I live in this area?” or ”Is this neighborhood good for families?”
Create high-quality videos. Video marketing is an excellent addition to your website, social media and email marketing campaigns as it helps you engage your audience with a more personable medium. As you make video content, watch your metrics closely and pay attention to what’s working and what isn’t. A well-rounded campaign should increase traffic and leads; if you’re just increasing traffic, you might need to adjust.
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3. Optimize your listings
If you display listings with too little information, you’re going to lose potential buyers and sellers alike. Having informative and good-looking listings will attract buyers. However, they’re also beneficial for home-seller prospects who see the effort and quality behind your listings.
Here are some tips for creating high-quality listings:
Include detailed descriptions. Too often, listings provide minimal detail or exclude important factors. This can waste time for both you and a potential buyer if they visit the property and discover something that makes the home unsuitable for them. Describing the property clearly can help ensure that more qualified buyers are interested in the property.
Take high-quality photos. If you want to get buyers interested in a property, great photos that show off a property’s key aspects are necessary. We recommend using a professional real estate photographer as they have the skills and equipment to make a property stand out.
Provide a video tour. Popularized during lockdowns, this is like a virtual walkthrough of a house and will help buyers get a feel for the house prior to visiting. People now expect this level of convenience (rather than having to visit each house in person). Video tours also benefit those looking at houses interstate as they will be able to get a feel for the house without traveling.
Include a map. Including a neighborhood map is a great way to show buyers what is nearby that might increase their interest. This is also the perfect place to embed a local guide or blog post that you’ve previously created.
4. Maintain your Google Business Profile
Your Google Business Profile is the short business description embedded in Google maps that shows a business’ reviews, location and open hours. It’s displayed in Google’s search results if it meets a person’s search criteria and is an easy way to attract local buyers (and sellers).
Without a professional-looking and updated business profile, you’re losing out in a few ways:
If there are multiple versions of your business on the web (say Facebook and another website have a different address or contact number), Google will rank your business lower in the search results
People might view incomplete or out-of-date business profiles as less trustworthy
When setting up your Business Profile, be sure to include your logo, opening hours, contact details and some key information about your business. These details help increase your visibility and improve the credibility of your business at first glance.
5. Ramp up your email marketing campaigns
Email marketing remains one of the best channels for nurturing leads, building brand recognition, increasing website traffic and driving revenue. According to Litmus, email marketing returns an ROI of $36 for every $1 spent. Yet, the click rate for the real estate industry is only 0.76%, almost half of the overall average (1.32%). This represents a huge opportunity for growth.
To achieve these email marketing benefits, here are a few ideas to incorporate into your email marketing strategy:
Send out a regular newsletter. A newsletter is a great addition to any email marketing campaign as it’s the most direct way to share key information with your contact list. You could include new listings, market trends and other information that will help engage your audience.
Include key information in your email signature. Including your logo, contact details and website address in your signature ensures that potential clients have all of the information they need to follow up with you. It also makes you look more professional, which adds to your credibility and builds trust.
Optimize your email marketing campaign with segmentation and automation. As part of your email list management strategy, segmentation helps to create targeted email lists that you can send different content to. This means you can send more relevant content to the audiences that are more likely to convert. Additionally, automating your email marketing strategy using a powerful email marketing tool helps you stay on top of your campaigns and keep in contact with your subscribers with minimal effort.
6. Grow your social media presence
Social media marketing is vital if you want to increase your brand awareness. Some key social media platforms include Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube and TikTok. Each of these will attract a different audience and can be used in different ways to increase your visibility and drive leads.
For example, you can use Facebook to create a business page and target prospective clients with personalized Facebook ads. Instagram and TikTok are best for attracting followers by leveraging current trends (and popular hashtags) with social media posts that include images and videos.
YouTube is useful for adding another content marketing channel to the mix and providing value to your audience through educational videos. You can also use YouTube to feature virtual tours and include CTAs that lead to your website.
Finally, LinkedIn is a powerful professional networking tool, allowing you to expand your network and connect with colleagues in your industry.
Here are some additional ideas you can use to up your social media marketing game:
Run contests, polls and AMAs (ask me anything). These can help grow and engage your audience, but they also help with direct market research. For instance, polls can help you get a better feeling for what kind of housing people are looking for and how many homeowners in your area are looking to sell. It’s possible to run contests and engage with your audience on each of the listed platforms.
Get influencers involved. Influencers are people with a large, engaged social media audience that can be tapped into through partnerships. Do some research to determine if their viewership matches your target audience and think of any ways you can collaborate for mutual benefit. If so, reach out to them and see if they’re interested in working with you.
Make use of websites like Zillow and HomeSnap. Zillow is the most-visited real estate website in the United States and offers you a place to show your listings to a large audience at a small monthly cost. HomeSnap is a similar service that provides real-time information on listings and helps agents connect with potential clients.
Pay for advertisements. You may have specific real estate advertising ideas you want to implement, such as targeting young families with pets. Social media sites like Facebook and YouTube are ideal for this kind of targeted advertisement. Likewise, Google local search ads can help display your business to those that are more likely to convert.
Add social sharing buttons to your listings. People want to share properties with their partners, friends and family to get their opinion when searching for a new house. Helping them do so with sharing buttons is an easy way to build your social media presence.
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6 offline real estate marketing ideas
While online marketing is becoming more popular, it’s important not to neglect your offline marketing plan.
Here are a few offline realtor marketing ideas to incorporate into your strategy:
1. Host open houses
For most buyers, seeing a house in person is a necessary step before they make a commitment to buy. Open houses give interested local buyers this opportunity, as well as giving them the chance to meet you and discuss the house and neighborhood in more detail.
You can think of your open house as a top-of-funnel sales activity, as well as aiming to reach those ready to buy at the bottom. Collect each visitor’s contact information, adding them to your customer relationship manager (CRM). Those who aren’t ready to buy the house in your event can be nurtured via an email sequence with tips on buying and selling houses and “pre-listing” sneak peeks for subscribers.
2. Hold or attend community events
Community events are a great opportunity to promote your real estate business locally. These local events can help you connect with potential clients authentically and provide them with key information about your business.
Try to target events that are closely related to real estate or your business values. This way, you won’t seem like the odd one out and you will be more likely to build a relationship with your local market.
3. Get involved with local businesses and consider sponsorships
One of the best ways to increase your brand visibility in a defined location is by partnering with local businesses, charities or community groups. These partnerships provide opportunities for cross-promotion, advertisements and increased lead generation.
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Here are some partnership marketing tips:
Partner with a local company to cross-promote clients to each other. You may want to partner with a company that has similar clients to yours, such as a local moving company or furniture warehouse. Partnering lets you promote each other’s businesses on your platforms.
Sponsor a local sports team, charity or community group. Sponsoring a local group is a great way to increase your brand’s visibility. Usually, there are local sports teams, charities or hobbyist clubs that are looking for small sponsorships to support their work. In return, they’ll let you display signs, ads and other materials at their events or on their equipment.
4. Create high-quality signage and stationery
Creating high-quality promotional material is another great way to get your name out there. These materials provide your business name and contact information and you can hand them out at open houses and events.
This material can include business cards, pens, water bottles and keychains – just about anything you can think of that will be useful. You could also consider eco-friendly options like recycled notepads, pencils and reusable straws.
In addition to this, consider the signage you display at open houses and events. These should display your logo and key information in a large enough font that passers-by (whether pedestrians or drivers) will be able to read it easily.
5. Produce a high-quality mailer
Real estate industry mailers are an effective way to generate leads and build brand recognition. This could include:
A brochure describing your services
A flyer asking “Are you ready to buy or sell?” with key information about your business
A magazine with local listings
A notice about an upcoming event or open house
Ensure that your direct mail is made from high-quality materials, has a great design and showcases all the key information needed to generate real estate leads.
6. Advertise in local newsletters
Placing ads in local publications is one of the old realtor advertising ideas that are still effective today. Local newsletters, newspapers and other geographically targeted publications will increase your visibility to the people most likely to need your services.
For example, you could run a monthly column in your neighborhood newspaper. This could feature stories about happy clients you’ve had, trends in the housing market or it could act as a guide for first-time homebuyers.
The trick is to find material that is relevant and valuable to the publication’s readers that will increase your visibility as an expert, drive traffic to your website and increase your follower lists.
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7 out-of-the-box real estate marketing ideas
Here are some unique real estate marketing ideas you can use to bolster your strategy and attract more prospective buyers and sellers.
1. Improve your referral network
According to the NAR, in 2021, 47% of buyers used an agent that was referred to them by a friend, neighbor or relative, while 90% would recommend their agent to others.
Many people move interstate or simply out of your area. If these people contact your business, you can easily refer them to an agent you know in the area they’re looking to buy in. These mutually beneficial relationships will help you find clients or earn a referral fee from agents when you refer one to them.
If you do receive a referral, make sure you send a thank you gift (even if you don’t close the deal). This will help maintain your professional relationships so that they will continue to send you new clients.
2. Ask for testimonials
Satisfied past clients can help you improve your credibility and build trust. Reach out to any previous clients that you helped achieve a successful sale and see if they’ll provide you with a few words in favor of your work.
You can display these testimonials on your website so that prospective clients can see how many people you’ve helped reach a successful outcome.
Likewise, you should try to collect reviews for your business in as many places as possible. Reviews help to increase the visibility of your business. They also give you the opportunity to respond to feedback and show that you are engaged and care about your client’s success.
3. Make use of drone photography
Drone photography is becoming increasingly common in real estate marketing. Drone photography helps give an overview of your real estate listings, especially those that are on larger properties or have complex layouts. You can also use drones to perform fly-throughs of properties that can act as video tours.
4. Use virtual staging
Depending on your listing, it’s often necessary to stage the house. Staging can be time-consuming and expensive due to sourcing decorators and hiring a moving company to deliver and arrange furniture. However, it can drastically improve the feeling of homeliness and increase your chance of making a sale.
Virtual staging is a great new alternative. It’s now possible to use virtual staging software to create great photographs (or videos) of your listing. This software can help you turn an empty building into a welcoming home without using real furniture and paying for a moving company.
5. Offer free home valuations
Complementary services are a great way to draw prospective clients and encourage them to connect with your business. There are several online home valuation tools that you can embed into your website which offer visitors an estimate of their house market price.
When the visitor clicks to see the value of their house, they will be prompted to provide their email address and sign up for your newsletter. This is an easy way to provide value to your prospect while collecting their information so you can nurture them going forward.
6. Find a niche
You can hyper-target specific demographics through niche marketing. For example, you could base the niche on the type of property, the type of buyer (e.g., active young families) or the location you’re selling in. Once you’ve chosen a niche, develop a marketing campaign that will target that audience.
If you’re targeting buyers in a particular community, consider local publications, social media groups and signage. If there’s a niche in your area waiting to be filled, you could also consider creating a separate social media account and landing page to build traction.
7. Automate your marketing with powerful tools
Real estate professionals are 26% more productive when they use an effective real estate CRM. A CRM keeps all of your data in one place, helping you manage your leads, prospects and customers more effectively.
For example, you can organize your properties, investors and buyers into pipelines so you never lose track of a sale and track your conversations and set reminders to follow up with clients.