Marketing Genius

Insights from the most brilliant minds in real estate

hosted by
Seth Price

Creating Conversations with Dan Stewart

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In digital terms, email is as old as time. Yet despite repeated claims about its impending demise, email remains a hugely important tool for businesses looking to communicate with consumers. According to the 2015 State of Marketing Report from Salesforce Marketing Cloud, 73 percent of marketers say email is core to their marketing strategy, while nearly 70 percent of US internet users cite email as their preferred method of communicating with businesses.

“Sales happen inside of conversations. No one is going to click a button to download their next home.”

— Dan Stewart

While there are a number of tools out there to help agents and brokers reach and respond to consumers via email, many of them sacrifice personalized messages in favor of fully automated drip campaigns. For Happy Grasshopper CEO Dan Stewart, personalization is the key to success.Just because email remains popular, however, doesn’t mean today’s digital marketers, real estate professionals included, have mastered the art of email. A survey of MailChimp customers from 46 industries found that Real Estate ranks 28th in email open rates. (Industries that beat real estate include Government, Religion, and Manufacturing).

“One of the common mistakes is to make what you’re sending instantly identifiable as marketing,” Dan says. “As recipients of messages, we know what to expect.” To address this problem, Happy Grasshopper has taken the innovative approach of assigning each customer a copywriter to craft emails that reflect their unique brand and personality. Today, Happy Grasshopper helps thousands of clients in dozens of industries connect with audiences.

A a four-time Inc. 5,000 Honoree and serial entrepreneur, Dan founded two companies prior to Happy Grasshopper. Now, Dan speaks at marketing events across the country, helping salespeople understand the value of engaging their customers in genuine conversation. “Sales happen inside of conversations,” Dan told us. “No one is going to click a button to download their next home.” Many agents, Dan says, “spend too much time sending email that makes them feel good, when they should send an email that actually creates conversations.”

In this interview, we sat down with Dan to talk about the long lifespan of online leads, the importance of cultural recruiting, and why new real estate agents should adopt a “me-first” attitude out of the gate.

- Matt Barba & Seth Price
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