Placester Interview, Part 1: RE/MAX’s Carrie Klein on Real Estate Marketing Training
By Matthew Bushery
About Inbound Marketing
For brokers, providing ample real estate marketing resources for their team of agents is a must today, but so, too, is offering significant amounts of training so those agents know how to expertly and efficiently use each and every one of those tools, including and especially real estate websites.
RE/MAX Heritage Real Estate Owner and Director of Marketing Carrie Klein understands the importance of supplying agents with modern, effective technologies and teaching them the best ways to make the most of them.
We interviewed Klein — who’s been in the field for 20 years now, after following in the footsteps of her agent mother — to gain a deeper comprehension regarding how she employs real estate marketing technology at her agency (including video), what’s involved in her day-to-day duties running the firm, and how she continually advances her own industry training to stay on top of the latest emerging tools and tactics she can use for her business.
Placester: Tell us about your background. What made you want to pursue a career in real estate, aside from it being a family business? Why were you passionate about joining the industry?
Klein: It’s all about the relationship. I enjoy every aspect of it: from getting to know people in a way that’s extremely intimate because you’re in their homes, to being in their cars driving them around for weekends upon weekends showing them listings.
I’ve been in real estate for two decades now. You become very involved on a professional level, but you also form personal relationships that carry on, if everyone’s done their jobs well. We’ve had clients that have been with us since before I even had my license, so to me, that’s the most enjoyable part is getting to stay in touch with clients, many of whom have kids who were toddlers when we first met and now are entering college. We’ve sold several homes for them along the way. You get to see how their lives have evolved.
Even if they’re going through something difficult, it’s nice they have trust and faith in us. Becoming human with people on that level is one of my favorite aspects of the job.
Placester: Regarding your day-to-day work, do you mind giving some background on your daily tasks and responsibilities?
Klein: I probably wear more than the two hats of being the owner and marketing director, but my day-to-day, my team, Greenwich Spaces, specializes in luxury properties, and I do the photography and videography. I also do the web development and just kind of the overall essential daily tasks.
Photography is a passion of mine, so all of the photos you see on our site are mine. I get to exercise that part of my brain — which makes me thrilled, to be able to do that on a daily basis. The second part is I get to work on really beautiful properties and projects and I get to present them to the market and re-present them and look at it with my lens of experience and say, ‘What are the things I can do to maximize this listing and call out the best aspects? How are we going to package it in a way that’s engaging and makes it stand out? What are we going to do that’s different to showcase it to people?’
We don’t do the plain, wide shots of the room where some agents say, ‘Well, that’s good enough.’ To us, that’s not okay, because we know we can do more. We’re continually striving to do just that.
Placester: It sounds like you make it a priority to make your marketing strategy a “next-level” one regarding specific tactics and activities.
Klein: Yeah, definitely. That’s the good thing about our company is that we can individualize each property and give them a standalone presence and present them as different lifestyles via property videos and photography that’s staged. We really do our best to make the homes warm and cozy and present people in our clips and shots to show what it can be like to live in these residences. We don’t do the plain, wide shots of the room where some agents say, ‘Well, that’s good enough.’ To us, that’s not okay, because we know we can do more. We’re continually striving to do just that.
Placester: Where does your use of Placester fit into your marketing scheme? How do you utilize the Placester platform for your team members and in your overall real estate marketing plans?
Klein: We use all aspects of our Placester sites and ensure we showcase listings of all price points. We make sure the ones that are in the top tier get full exposure through the sites. And then you navigate to our blog and it’s entirely videos. Each of them spotlights a property or segment of our market or some activity one can do in our market — for instance, one of our agents paddle-boards, so we filmed them paddle-boarding in our market — so we’re using the blog in that way as opposed to what agents would typically blog about, but that’s helped us give the videos a nice presence on our homepage.
Given the amount of time and effort we put into filming them, we feel that’s right where they should be, so our visitors and leads can get a glimpse of our market.
Placester: Of all of the tools and tactics you implement for your real estate marketing, which ones would you say have the greatest impact on your lead generation, nurturing, and conversion goals and help you stand out to your leads and clients?
Klein: For most people, it’s truly the whole marketing package. We don’t have any set services. We’ll go in and, before we commit to lifestyle video, we have to make sure the listing in question actually tells a story and we can do something meaningful to promote it. If there’s nothing that really jumps out at us, then we don’t move forward with certain activities, like lifestyle videos. We find another way to tell a powerful message about the home: videos with wide shots, quick-hit videos showing the rooms, and with quick transitions.
Regardless of the video type, having video that’s well-produced, you don’t see as many of those in the real estate space. Many agents go with the photo montage clips and that’s it — the same photos that are in the listings, presenting the same material the same way, and calling it a video. To me, the video tools that are out there are today so much more robust and not as complicated as they used to be, so it’s essential that we use them to the best of our capabilities to make leads really excited about properties.
The second component is we do a lot of social media marketing and so we use Facebook ads to drive people back to the website and measure how much traffic we have coming from social networks. I still see people using their websites to link to Zillow or another real estate portal or platform, and they’re not really measuring the true metrics and measuring their analytics and their sites and how people are interacting with their listings. We try to give our clients as much information as possible, so we can say, ‘Hey, you got 50,000 impressions on our site for your listing alone, so we’re heading in a good direction to generate buyer interest.’ That gives us a way to have a conversation about setting up showings, getting offers, knowing where they came from, and determine if we’re putting the listing information in front of the right people and in the right manner.
We’re constantly measuring and evaluating throughout the lifetime of the listing, but the website is the anchor for all of that marketing.
So that’s something we’re constantly measuring and evaluating throughout the lifetime of the listing, but the website is the anchor for all of that marketing.
Enhance your lead generation from your real estate website and other online marketing channels by downloading our free home buyer’s and seller’s guide ebooks and sharing them with your niche audience!
Brokers: How do you ensure you provide the most up-to-date tech tools and continual training for your agents like Klein? What resources do you have available to help your team step up their marketing? Share your team-building strategy with us below!
Published on May 6, 2016
Written by Matthew Bushery
I'm the Sr. Content Creator for Placester, where I educate real estate professionals about modern marketing and, in turn, help agents and brokers make the most of their online presence, earn more traffic, and generate more leads and business.