Real estate marketing plan is a document in which you outline your marketing strategy for a given period of time (a quarter, a year or several upcoming years). It helps real estate agents determine their goals and list the steps they need to take in order to achieve them. It is also helpful when it comes to gathering data and getting the grasp of the general market situation and the position of their real estate business within it.
Impromptu marketing activities rarely bring satisfactory results, that's why having a real estate marketing plan done before you enter a new year filled with goals and hopes will increase you chances of reaching your target clients and making more sales in the long run.
Putting together a marketing plan will also help you organize the knowledge about the real estate business and information about the market that you alredy have, rezognize your chances and strenghts, as well as notice negative trends that might pose a threat in the upcoming months. Having all this knowledge is critical for any real estate agent who wants to operate in a structured way and build trustful and consistent communication style that will promote their unique selling proposition. Moreover, knowing how you want to be perceived by clients and having a stronger brand will open new doors for you when it comes to partnering up with other professionals and local businesses.
Another advantage of planning your marketing efforts ahead is that it will help you estimate and plan your budget carefully and avoid unexpected spendings with a low ROI rate.
Real estate marketing plan can be especially effective for brokerages and teams to ensure that everyone is on the same page regarding marketing activities, communication style and selling processes.
You can choose any form you want: it can be a presentation, Excel/Google Sheets file, a Word or a PDFdocument. The key is to include all the relevant information as well as important data and KPIs and the dates you want to execute your activities. The most important thing is that it has to be legible for you and your team.
If you want to lay out your marketing ideas in a way that is descriptive, a PDF or a Word document will work best for you. You can include your market observations, a review of your competition and ideas for your communication. To make it easier to browse through and find information, don't forget to include a table of contents at the beginning of the file.
Some of us - especially those with analytical approach - prefer to have their real estate marketing plan in an orderly Excel/Google Sheets table where they can track their progress and monitor the budget.
Planning your activities, you have to remember about seasonal events. Have all the important holidays listed so that you will be able to adjust your efforts in time, create Christmas cards for your clients earlier and be prepared for periods of higher and lower demand in the real estate market during the year and include strategic periods for your business. For example when people move, when the number of open house visitors peak etc.
A perfect real estate marketing plan will include the tools and different marketing channels that you use for communicating with your clients and, most importantly, HOW you are going to use them. It is a popular practice that business owners start to run social media profiles and, after 3 months, abandon them completely due to lack of time or ideas. Dead profiles, irregular mails or outdated automated messages almost never work.
Try to break down your real estate marketing efforts into smaller components.For example:
The next thing that you want to do is to determine the goal of every tool and how you can benefit from using every one of them. You will find out that some of the tools will be great for capturing new leads, while others will be effective ways to nurture the existing ones. Dividing your marketing tools into smaller groups will help you develop the message you want to convey with the use of every one of them without repeating the same information all the time.
While choosing your marketing tools, try to plan ahead your activities. If you want to have a engaging social media presence, plan your content for several weeks upfront and schedule the dates when you will need to create a new set of posts or revise your pop ups, emails and automated messages.
Apart from the planned activities, it is a good practice to organize your marketing ideas and inspirations in one file to be easily found. If you see a nice way of communicating services on social media or a nice phrase in a copytext - save it for future reference and use it in the future.
If you're running out of marketing ideas for promoting your business, check out our 107 Outside-the-Box Real Estate Marketing Ideas & Tips (With Examples) article that will inspire you to undertake new activities!
Research the market
Though it is an obvious thing, let us not undervalue the tremendous difference that researching the market properly can make for your business and income. Understanding the market will help you put together a complete real estate marketing plan and set realistic goals as well as notice new opportunities quickly (preferably sooner than anyone else does).
You can include historic data in your marketing plan: Keeping track of your area’s demographics and moving trends is an important part of your real estate marketing plan.
Researching competitors is the crucial part of creating a real estate marketing plan that will add value to your business. The more you know about other agents in your area, the better. You can create a whole section in your marketing plan dedicated to your competitors, the way they communicate their services online (what channels do they use? What do their websites look like? What information about them is included online - maybe there is something in their communication that is missing and you could use it to your advantage), what are their online reviews and client testimonials, what are their marketing tactics, who is their target customer and what unique selling proposition they have.
Whether you run a brokerage or a one-person business, creating a brand strategy is critical to how you are going to be perceived by potential customers. Traditionally, we understand branding as the visual representation of the company - the logo, the color palette, fonts, but in fact it goes further than that. It is the way you are perceived by your clients, not only through visuals, but overall communication - information on your website, your Facebook/Instagram bio, the tone of your emails and text messages and so on.
Creating a brand vision is often a long journey - it might take years to find your voice that will stand out from the crowd. While you’re putting together your real estate marketing plan, try to list a few adjectives that best describe your approach to the business and the way you work with people.
Having it done will help you adjust your language and visual identification to the values you want to promote, creating a consistent and trustworthy communication.
Part of the successful marketing plan is revision. All the information that you have ever posted on your website and social media profiles (e.g. about me section), flyers you give out, automated messages etc. have to be revised at least annually to see if they still go with your brand vision. It is impossible to adjust everything at once - especially if you have a very limited time you can dedicate to your marketing activities. Including revision of your already existing real estate marketing materials and creating new ones that will convey your brand’s message will eventually set a tone for your business.
You cannot create a good marketing strategy without establishing your business and marketing goals. Listing your objectives - revenue, the number of sold properties, more leads or other will help you choose the correct marketing tools and spend your marketing budget effectively.
If you have several objectives, try to list them from the most important ones to the less important ones.
Remember that your objectives have to be realistic and feasible. You can use the SMART strategy that defines five features of doable goals:
In order to set realizable goals, they need to be precise and clear - this way you won’t be lost in the process. Having specific goals will help you stay motivated and confident when it comes to taking the steps to achieve it.
Seeing progress helps you stay motivated along the way and notice when things go astray. In order to make your goal measurable, try setting some criteria in which you are going to record effectiveness. It might be the number of new leads, page visits or social media followers you want to get by the end of the quarter.
Things are easier said than done. It is tempting to set the bar high, but at the end of the day, setting unachievable goals turns out to be demotivating. It doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be ambitious, but avoid setting objectives that are impossible to achieve.
Your goal should support the overall progress of your business and translate into its effectiveness. If you know that none of your prospect clients uses TikTok - there is no point in investing time and energy into it. Set objectives that will bring results.
Time frames are critical to a successful marketing strategy and the same goes with business objectives. While setting your goals, clearly state what effect you expect to have in a given time period.
Noticing opportunities and taking advantage of them always pays off. If you observe a promising trend in the housing market, try to include it in your marketing plan and see in which ways you can capitalize on it. It might be a shift in demographics, new developments in the neighborhood or a large corporation's branch office that will open.
Similarly to opportunities, seeing threats early enough can help you dodge a bullet and invest in marketing smarter and safer. Again, if you notice a negative trend in any area of your business, think about how it will affect your business and should you take any of it into consideration when it comes to planning your marketing activities.
If you like, you can perform the entire SWOT analysis (Strenghts, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) for your business. It takes more time than simply thinking about the threats and opportunities waiting for you in the upcoming year, but it will definitely give you a fuller picture of your position in the real estate market.
Marketing persona (often referred to as a buyer persona) is a representation of the general target audience of any marketing campaign. Creating one helps entrepreneurs design their product in a way that fits the needs of their customers and resonates with their goals, and marketers find the language in which the product (or a service) is communicated.
A marketing persona embodies the motivation that the buyer has in the purchase process (e.g. I want to have beautiful hair), the problems that they come across (but it keeps falling out), their values (I like to save money so I want something in a middle price range), common objections (I’m eco-friendly, I don’t want a plastic-bottled shampoo), and, of course, demographics.
The particularity of the real estate industry is often a hindrance to implementing traditional marketing methods and you might think that creating personas will not be applicable here. Your customers probably have very different backgrounds and belong to different age groups, however their motivations might be similar, as well as their pains.
Try to create a persona that will feature your clients’ most popular desires, objectons, goals and fears. When you have it done, you will have a concise roadmap to build your communication in a way that will inspire trust and answer some of their questions before they even ask.
7Ps marketing mix is one of many marketing methods that helps create unique value proposition and communication strategy for your product or service. It was first proposed in the 1960s by E. Jerome McCarthy as a 4ps marketing mix and developed in the 80s with the arrival of the three additional Ps.
Although it’s been four decades since the creation of the final 7Ps marketing mix method and many marketing tools that we use have changed, the method is still effective and helps you create your offer.
As the name suggests, the method consists of 7 components: Product, Place, Price, Process, Physical Evidence (some refer to it as Packaging), People, Promotion.
Refers to the product or service that you offer to your customers and its values. In order to describe it well, you should think about what it is that you offer to your customers and what makes it different from your competitors’ services? What is your Unique Value Proposition or area that you specialize in?
In the case of real estate, Place refers to the area you operate your business in. It is good to have its features listed so that you can create your offer especially to those who want to sell or buy a property there.
Place will refer also to your online activity as the virtual world is also a place where you can be found by your potential clients.
In respect to the real estate industry, price determines the fixed percentage of property price that is paid by your clients to you and how it compares to your competitors’ price.
From the first call to the last handshake after a successfully completed deal, your process of providing your real estate services to a client should be standardized with every step carefully planned.
How do you approach building relationships with your clients? What is your lead generation (pop ups, contact forms, open house sign-in sheets), strategy and how do you nurture existing leads in your base? How do you keep in touch with your past clients? What is your way of contacting your clients and the selling process?
Promotion includes all the channels that you will use to promote your services: your social media, paid ads, billboards, posters, door hangers, freebies and other marketing materials.
Physical Evidence is every proof that your company is real: your logo, your printed materials (flyers, sign in sheets) as well as your digital marketing (your website, landing pages, your social media profiles and social media ads)
If you're an individual agent, your real estate marketing plan will depend fully on you and your goals. You can choose the form of your marketing plan that is suitable for you without taking into consideration if it's legible for others.
However, it's definitely more difficult to stick to the plan if you're the only person responsible for it, so it will be crucial for you to set the dates when you to have something done and take it seriously. Some people find it helpful to break down your activities into smaller tasks. Others will put some motivational quotes along their tasks - whatever works for you is fine!
A real estate marketing plan for a broker is definitely going to be much more elaborate than the one made for an independent real estate agent. Ideally, it will include the brokerage’s general marketing goals and its vision for everyone to adhere to. Apart from that, it should have some of the marketing activities assigned to people who are going to be responsible for implementing and reporting them.
A marketing plan for brokerage should include its agents’ level of involvement in designing communication. For example having unified business cards or running their social media profiles and social media posts individual agents / websites in a coherent manner. For that, a manual with guidelines will be needed.