Digital marketing for Real Estate isn’t a new concept. In the past 5 years, lots of agents join the digital landscape and it became highly competitive.
Potential Real Estate clients use Google, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram so we follow them there to meet their needs and expectations because people do shop for Real Estate online.
The question is not whether you use it or not. It’s how to use it right. I’m not going to talk about nitty-gritty technical details in this article but I’ll explain the 5 major success factors in Real Estate digital marketing.
At the end of the day in business is all about return. We spend money on advertising because we want to make money. Digital marketing gives us a great opportunity to keep track of our investments and see how much we get in return per campaign, ad or platform.
In digital it’s all about transparency. In comparison to any other advertising methods, we can see where people click and what they do after. Which gives us precise control over our budgets.
The problem here is that not many agents and/or marketers know what success should look like. To measure our success we need to choose a couple of metrics which we’ll treat as Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).
KPIs help you to monitor your strategy performance and adjust it if needed. It always depends on your business goals.
Here are examples of business goals and meaningful KPIs attached to them.
Buyer/Seller lead generation
Probably the most common goal for Real Estate Agents:
- Number of leads – number of potential customer phone numbers and/or emails
- CPA (Cost Per Lead Acquisition) – how much you paid for each contact
- Conversion Rate – Percentage of leads who signed with you.
For Conversion rate, I suggest you have a short term conversion rate and a long term conversion rate.
- Short term conversion – people who signed with you within the first 60 days after leaving contact information
- Long term conversion – people who signed with you within the first 6 months after leaving contact information
People know your Brokerage brand name or Real Estate Agent name.
- Website direct traffic – you need to measure it through google analytics. Don’t just measure everyone who visits your website. Focus on those people who directly typed your URL in a browser (it means they are aware of your brand)
Are you trying to attract buyers and sellers through content?
Then you have to measure brand engagement to see how people like it (how they engage with it?).
- Pages/Session – how many pages on average people visit on your website. We want people to visit more than 2 pages, keep them engaged (all depending on how many pages your website has)
- Bounce Rate – the percentage of single-page website visits without any further interactions. Someone comes to your website and leave. We want to keep this metric low, we want people to explore our website
- Engagement rate on Facebook – the number of Engaged Users divided by the total reach
Always start your planning process by setting business goals and relevant KPIs to them.
You know your KPIs and now it’s time to use them. It’s time-consuming to check various platforms or ask your marketer to pull new numbers every time you need them.
Therefore, I suggest you ask your marketer to build a dashboard for you with all the necessary numbers you want to see.
Spending money on marketing without a marketing dashboard is like driving a car without a dashboard when you don’t know the speed or how much gas you have left.
A dashboard can be as simple as this one:
Modify/Expand digital strategies overtime
Look at your KPIs on the dashboard and adjust your strategy. Digital marketing makes your marketing strategy agile, you can change your strategies and tactics very fast.
Try different campaigns, creatives, see a performance, adjust if needed. If you work with a marketer brainstorm together.
You can swap strategies overtime. For example, start with a brand awareness campaign then continue through slowly swapping it to acquiring leads. By the time when you can’t manage too many leads at once you swapping back to brand awareness.
Brainstorm with your marketer
It’s very important to have brainstorming sessions when you dig in-depth into nitty-gritty details of digital marketing. Ask your marketer to prepare a monthly/bi-weekly report for that.
In these reports you should expect the following:
- How much do we pay per lead
- Who are we targeting and what audience perform the best
- Which locations perform the best
- What creative/platform performs the best
This is the time when your Real Estate expertise meets the expertise of your digital marketer and you can mould your marketing strategy in a competitive advantage of your business.
No one knows your business better than you, so don’t just rely on a marketer’s opinion to direct your strategy. Think of a marketer as your partner, that will bring you the best results.
Do you see some audience doesn’t perform as well as others? Apply your Real Estate expertise and think about what should you say differently in your ad copies to improve the results.
Use CRM platforms (Customer Relationship Management)
Some of your leads acquired online may sign a contract after months of following up. This creates a problem of keeping a track of all the marketing stages for all the leads you have.
A CRM platform will keep a leads database organized. Most CRMs offer a built-in email automation feature.
You can segment your leads and depending on the marketing stage and send them automated emails. It will improve your results significantly.
To summarize all the points:
- Set KPI’s before you start spending money
- Measure your results
- Visualize results on a dashboard
- Analyze the results bi-weekly/monthly
- Brainstorm and adjust your campaigns
- Use CRMs to keep a database organized