5 Real Estate Marketing Tasks to Perform Manually
On the flip side of the coin is the realization that not every activity you partake in can be automated. So, which activities do you need to handle manually in order to keep your online marketing strategy a well-oiled machine? There are five primary tasks that stand out.
Providing Customer Service to Your Clients and Leads
A home buyer lead wants more information on the schools in your market’s district. A former client has a referral for you and needs to know how they should get in touch with you. A seller has second thoughts on a bid and wants to negotiate. There is no limit to the types of customer service requests you will handle during your time as an agent. Because each request will be unique, a standard “Thanks for getting in touch — I’ll help you shortly!” email doesn’t cut it. Rather, distinct, individual messages need to be shared with each of these contacts. Fail to do so and you run the risk of alienating your prospects and clients and, even worse, losing their business. Many of your customer service requests will come through your Facebook Page and Twitter feed, and while the temptation to keep the conversation strictly on these social networks is strong, your best bet is to figure out their problem via the social channel, then take it offline to help them in a more personal manner. While it may be tempting to put your customer service on autopilot, spend the time and energy needed to truly solve your contacts’ issues. Make them feel special. Address specific steps as to how you’ll help them and reassure them you’re the right person for the job by meeting their expectations. Automation lacks personalization, so taking this route to ensure client (and future client) satisfaction is essential.
Engaging with Your Audience Through Social Media
Social media engagement can go a long way in developing your real estate brand reputation and possibly even help you go viral for all the right reasons. Having said that, it’s far easier to resolve problems, assuage any concerns, answer questions, and provide information your contacts crave face to face or, at the very least, over the phone. Think of it this way: Hearing a lead’s voice or seeing the body language of a client in person can give you far more insights into their dilemmas and anxieties than a 140-character tweet ever can, so invite your contacts out for coffee or visit them at their residences when troubles arise and questions need to be answered, instead of sending a stock status update saying “Help is on the way!”
Sharing Special Promotional Messages on Social Media
Each social network is different and unique, so posting the same message promoting your business on each one won’t do you any favors. Instead, craft responses tailored for each social outlet: short and sweet messages for Twitter, lengthier updates for Facebook and Google+, and more visual-based posts for Pinterest and Instagram. Here’s a prime example: Many real estate agents like to offer free home buying or selling webinars or consultations to prospective clients. Let’s say you decide to host an online Google Hangout with leads, but will provide different tips in each webinar you conduct. Promoting each individual one with the same standard social media post — “Be sure to register for my next home buying webinar!” — and accompanying image featuring you and “Join my webinar!” won’t make your your events unique or memorable.
Generating Real Estate Marketing Analytics Reports
Some software allows professionals to generate reports on a regular basis (weekly, biweekly, monthly, etc.) that feature general metrics for their websites, social media channels, and email marketing. This is certainly helpful, but to get a full grasp of what is and isn’t working for your real estate marketing, you’ll need a more intricate exploration into these analytics. An analytics report that’s automatically sent to you via email from a third-party service, for instance, can only give you a high-level understanding of how many visitors your site had in the previous couple of weeks or how many clicks your calls to action (CTAs) received, but if you want to know which pages received the most traction and engagement and which CTAs garnered the most clicks, you need to spend some time manually viewing Google Analytics and any other analytics platform you use.
Qualifying and Scoring Your Real Estate Leads
There is no shortage of services out there that can help real estate agents score and qualify their leads on an array of criteria — from how often they open emails to the last time they called. It’s easy to assign specifications in a software platform that automates what grade to assign to your leads, but there are intricate details for each prospect in your real estate CRM that can’t be quantified, so it’s best to use your judgment when assessing leads. Use an objective grading system to qualify your leads, like the actions they take, but feel free to add in some subjective classifications for each prospect as well. A seller lead may have indicated a week ago they were nearly ready to put their home on the market, but if you receive an email from them after that call saying they “may consider offers soon” or “might want to host open houses,” that could indicate a newfound hesitancy to sell. There are obviously many subjective situations that can occur when scoring real estate leads, so be sure to add notes manually after each touch you have with a lead so you remember exactly what their mindset is and can, in turn, understand which leads to pursue, which need more time, and which you can designate as “cold” and pass over.