With any online marketing technique that you try, the key to making it work for you is consistency. Find an outlet that you enjoy and dedicate your resources to it. Once you learn how that is working for your business then move onto the next channel with the most potential.
In this post were going to outline the online marketing landscape and it’s potential (our opinion) to your marketing efforts.
Conversion Rate Optimization
CRO is the art of making sure your website is converting the maximum number of visitors into leads possible. This is done through things like A/B testing and making sure you have the core of what your visitors are looking for on your site such as testimonials and local information.
This has the highest potential because many real estate websites are design focused on the MLS integration instead of the consumer. Consumers are starting their searches on Zillow/Trulia/Realtor/etc. When they come to your website, they’re looking for something more valuable like local information and a reason why you’re the best Realtor for them.
CRO has low potential for real estate websites which have low traffic. To accurately test improvements you need traffic to test it with that you can track and get data to improve upon. If you don’t have that traffic, it’s best to focus on something else before conversion rate optimization.
Search Engine Optimization
Ranking your site higher and it’s content on Google. Most everyone now knows the value of SEO and the work it takes to make it happen. Being on the front page of Google for multiple local search terms can completely change your business.
SEO really isn’t as complicated as it seems. It comes down to a few basic things: Creating content focused on keywords with traffic that you want. Make sure the page has on-page optimization so Google correctly crawls your website and ranks you for the keyword. Build backlinks to that content so that it will rank higher.
Doing those 3 steps correctly will rank you high and bring you traffic.
Content marketing also falls under SEO on this chart. Very high ROI and effort.
Also known as lead nurturing. Having a solid email marketing strategy can directly impact the ‘quality’ of your leads and responses you get from every signup on your website. There are many tools to make this automated, best of all being you.
Segmenting your potential leads into different categories and targeting them based on what you know they want is a great way to make your campaign differ from your competitors who are all sending the same automated message.
Did you get your lead from a open house? Great, create a campaign targeted to that so every open house email you add to it will get a custom built email marketing campaign from you.
Did you get an online lead you know is a seller? Segment them and build a custom campaign for all your sellers.
So on so forth… Any real estate agent can directly benefit from a great email marketing campaign and that is why it’s high value. Focus on building relationships through emails, not sending messages.
Viral Content Campaigns
A great example of a viral content campaign is Giveaways. You can host an online giveaway for a gift from a local business. Buy some Facebook advertising targeting local people only and start generating signups instantly. It’s a great way to build out your network.
The downside to this is the lead quality in terms of people wanting to sell or buy right now is really low. This type of play should be for the long term play of building a relationship overtime.
The upside is that you can quickly build your sphere of influence with this kind of tactic.
With some local search terms going up to $15 per CLICK, it’s very easy to lose a lot of money in the PPC space. The lead quality will generally be higher than other places where you might get a lead but, first you’re going to have to make sure your website is designed to capture leads.
PPC should be done along side of conversion rate optimization. If you’re paying that much per click to get someone to your website, you’re going to have to make sure that your website actually converts visitors into leads or you’ll just be wasting money.
Another great idea is to take PPC and instead of directing the potential leads to your main website, direct them to a custom built landing page made for the keyword they’re searching for. You generally have a pretty good idea of what peoples intent is when searching for certain keywords, this gives you a great idea of what to build on the page they’re directed to so you can get their contact information and follow up with them ASAP.
Generally not applied to real estate. This is where you find basically online marketers for higher who drive traffic to your website for a commission. These type of people mostly sell other peoples products and not help market real estate agents. Although if you really put effort into it, i’m sure you can find people willing to help you out.
It’s outside the norm so it would be really tough, but possible. Has pretty good potential… Imagine an affiliate marketer for you as an employee who does your online marketing for a commission that you don’t have to manage.
Not really effective for Realtors. This is the type of advertising you might see on third party websites on a banner ad or side bar. More effective for places such as a real estate company trying to increase their brand awareness.
Social Media Marketing
Social media is a hard marketing channel to calculate correctly because it’s very hard to directly track the ROI from the time spent. The most common mistake in social media marketing (mainly on Twitter) is when real estate agents only post listings and something along the lines of “Anyone in Orange County looking to sell their home? Contact me!”. If anyone ever got a listing from that I would be surprised. You need to create relevant content that your followers actually enjoy. Or else you’re just another tweet lost in the Twitter realm.
Online Public Relations (PR)
The direct ROI on this is said as low but, actually has many benefits that you gain from over time.
First benefit being SEO. When you get picked up by a large publication such as your local newspaper or maybe even inman news, Google sees that and will potentially rank your content higher which then results into more traffic and more leads. Another benefit is building your audience. When you get some really good PR, think about it as borrowing someones audience. You get your name and content in front of a new audience and if they like what you have to say then they’re going to check out your real estate website / blog.
In the end, there are no secrets to online marketing. It’s picking the channels that you can do well and innovating your space inside them. When done correctly each channel by itself can have a huge impact on your business. Everyone has the same opportunities, it’s just how you use them.
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