Placester Interview: EGA Homes’ Ryan Gullett on Real Estate Marketing Education
It’s not enough for real estate marketing associates at agencies and brokerages to simply give their agents modern tech tools and apps. To get agents into top-producer status, these marketing aides must provide step-by-step guidance to their teams and lead by example.
Ryan Gullett, who serves as the marketing coordinator for the real estate pros at EGA Homes in Riverside, California, understands this approach well. Working side by side with the agents at his firm — many of whom served in the military and help fellow veterans achieve their dreams of homeownership — Gullett informs and educates his colleagues so they can maximize their lead generation and nurture their prospects to close with relative ease.
Find out how Gullett sets up his agents for real estate marketing success in our interview below (hint: Placester plays a sizable role).
Placester: Over your time at EGA Homes, how have you seen the brand’s marketing philosophy (and those of its agents) change?
Gullett: I am not sure the philosophy has changed here at EGA Homes. Since I have been here, the biggest thing I have seen change is brand consistency and promoting the right content. Since we have a different mix of agents at the firm, its been nice to see agents get on board with new marketing tactics. For example, I have helped an agent in the past launch a series of video tips to his clients, and other agents have seen the success of video and were inspired to get on board as well.
Agents hear about different marketing techniques, but they get more inspired when they see it work. Our company culture is about positive results. That is always my goal with marketing.
Placester: What specific marketing tactics and outlets have helped you and agents at the firm advance their online presence?
Gullett: The biggest tactic is putting yourself out there and figuring out how your personal brand creates value.
You are never going to advance your online presence unless you take risks. I have had an agent recently start to do video for different home listings. He was hesitant at first because of the production cost to edit the video and he did not have the time to learn how to do it all himself. I was able to leverage the exposure from the company website and social media channels and give the video way more reach than had he just used his own online presence.
Once they learn how to do all this work, having a real estate website is a great place to keep track of their videos and blogs. The best tactic you can do is when you do something worthwhile and have a way for other people to continually see it and find it.
Placester: How important is it for your agency to have a modern real estate website? How has it helped your branding, lead generation, and other goals?
Gullett: It is not even a question of importance at this point — it is a must. A real estate agent needs a license to sell a property right? In today’s market, firms and agents need a modern real estate website to be relevant — especially if you are trying to drive lead traffic to search for homes. Placester has been a great platform because it gives us complete flexibility for providing our brand attractive landing pages for all kinds of different content.
The EGA Homes real estate team based in Riverside, California
Placester: How do you continually help the agents at your company make the most of their online marketing?
Gullett: I aim to be the missing piece from the initial idea to the final product. An agent will come to me with a rough strategy and some ideas, and from there, it is my job to make sure that we can use the right tools to help with their own online marketing.
Some agents are very focused on their business and just need help bridging that gap. Just the other day, I had a meeting with an agent, and they were telling me a list of things they wanted to see on their Placester website: testimonials, pictures, video, etc. I was able to tell them how this is all extremely possible with the site. They send me all the information and I then put it together. My job is much easier knowing I have a productive tool like Placester to use.
Placester: What lead management strategy have you helped implement at EGA? Where does Placester fit into your lead nurturing strategy?
Gullett: Our CEO told me when he hired me that he went back and did some research on potential clients/leads he missed out on in the past. The number he found was extremely high. Ever since he found out that figure, he never wanted to miss out on those opportunities. The ideas were there, but it lacked landing pages, calls to action, and constant contact with leads.
Placester has fit into this strategy extremely well. It’s an all-in-one package when it comes to lead management. We are confident from the very first point of contact that we can impress leads. That has been a great feeling moving forward. It also allows us to always be in contact with them. The drip campaigns in the back end let us promote our own content all the time. That is key for us because that’s how we communicate our company culture and values, which are a very big marketing emphasis for us.
Placester: Email marketing plays a big role in agents’ success online. How have you utilized email campaigns for your team?
Gullett: Email is one of our favorite ways to stay in contact with our leads. The most well-liked feature is sending daily or weekly property updates to peoples inboxes.
Almost everyone we speak with at first wants properties sent to their email. Not having to worry about it makes my job much easier. Perhaps the best part of Placester’s drip campaign tool is that it keeps the lead in our system. Not having to use an external service means they are always coming back to our website.
Placester: What are some of the main marketing goals you aim to achieve in the months ahead? How do you adjust your marketing plan accordingly?
Gullett: Exposure, exposure, exposure. I am comfortable with most of the online marketing systems that we have in place now. The biggest thing moving forward, though, is making sure we close on a higher number of cold leads that visit our site.
The conversion rate before was not where we wanted it to be. Along with growing our database of subscribers for different email campaigns and channels, our general goal is to constantly increase our brand exposure.
Placester: Where do you see the future of real estate marketing headed? How do you intend to ensure EGA stays up to speed with marketing trends and technology?
Gullett: Lots of companies ignore disrupting technology because it is an attack on their business model. These types of disruptive innovation and technology always start on the edge of an industry and make their way inside to the middle in time.
I personally believe the biggest area to watch out for in real estate is a technology system that will simplify negotiations, bidding, transactions, and other core facets of real estate transactions. We won’t see any major changes in our industry unless big players in our own space start causing some disruption. Think about how Apple changes our industry with going wireless, less ports on the computer, and no headphone jacks. Once they do it, usually the rest of the industry will eventually get there as well.
That means we have to come up with new ways to create and show value outside of that traditional role. As of right now, I try different strategies to market the firm outside of things people can already do online. Most of our clients are fully capable of finding a home online. I want to show service beyond that.
Assistance in the home buying process is definitely a great area to start. We have multiple in-house services so the client stays under our “umbrella” until they are ready to get approved.
Regarding how we intend to stay up to speed, we go where the clients want to be. We have seen a big push on being on a mobile device and heavy use of video marketing. Those are two areas where we make sure to focus right now. You have to be careful, however, jumping early on new tactics, as they can stretch your business thin and you can see a loss in quality of work. You don’t want to be trying all kinds of new trends and technologies for the sake of trying them. Make sure to be on the ones that reach the users.
Download our “Launch Your Real Estate Marketing Mix” ebook today to learn how to get your firm’s online strategy up and running.
What do you think of Gullett’s approach to educating his team about modern real estate marketing? Share your thoughts with us below!
Published on September 29, 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.