People are likely to tell everyone they know about a bad experience with a business, and they’re usually thrilled to pass on information about good experiences, too. And that’s what word-of-mouth marketing is all about.

The home buying and selling processes are ones in which you become intimately familiar with your clients, and vice versa. This is a prime opportunity to get these clients to spread the word about your services.

 

  • Focus on creating an amazing client experience.

To create client experiences that people brag about, go above and beyond with customer service gestures for all of your clients. Customer service that goes beyond your client’s expectations involves everything from your response time to your level of transparency throughout the process.

Homebuyers and sellers, especially first-time buyers and sellers, will appreciate it if you create a map that boils down the process into easy-to-follow steps that make everything less daunting.

Another great way to stay top-of-mind when it comes to word-of-mouth referrals is by being timely with updates, responses, and alerts. Take the time to stay in touch with clients so they feel like their needs are your priority.

 

  • Use social media as a referral channel.

Sharing your clients’ social posts and creating photo ops for milestone moments that they will want to share on social media are excellent ways to get your clients to talk about you to their friends and family.

For example, say you take a photo of your clients with their new home in the background, keys proudly displayed in their hand as they smile at the camera, and you post it on your Instagram or Facebook account.

From here, clients have the photos you took highlighting their experience readily available for them to share and tell their family and friends about with the touch of a button.

 

 

  • Streamline the referral process.

Your clients shouldn’t have to jump through hoops to refer your services. Make the referral process as seamless as possible by taking steps like pre-printing referral cards to give to happy clients, or creating a templated email survey or testimonial request.

However, the most important part of streamlining the referral process is timing, timing, timing.

Make sure you’re capitalizing on the referral process while you’re still top of mind. You shouldn’t wait longer than a few weeks to ask for a referral. Conversely, you shouldn’t ask too soon either, or you’ll risk making a bad impression.

 

 

  • Ask for reviews/ratings/referrals.

Many agents don’t think to ask, but planting the seed in your clients’ heads is sometimes half the battle. Sometimes the most obvious way to get your clients to brag about how great of an experience they shared with you is by simply asking them!

It can even be something as simple as:  “I’m so pleased you had a great experience! Let me know if I can ever help you with anything else, and if you have any family, friends, or colleagues who need help buying or selling a home, please let them know about my services.”

 

 

  • Offer incentives.

Lastly, you can also incentivize your clients to spread the word to friends and family by offering them things like thank you notes, bottles of wine for their new home, and even tickets to events in their new area.

When the client uses the gift you give them, they’ll think of you and how great the home buying or home selling experience with you was. If they’re sharing the wine you got them with friends and their friends ask where they bought it, you and your services will immediately become the subject of the conversation.

Remember that getting referrals involves happy clients, so make customer service your top priority and you’re sure to have clients who are more than happy to spread the word. Happy selling!

Millennials have become the largest share of homebuyers. According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR) research department, as of 2018, millennials are 36 percent of homebuyers, with 65 percent of those also being first-time home buyers.

The question now becomes: how do you reach this tech-savvy swath of homebuyers?

A majority (59 percent) of Millennials are active Instagram users. While Facebook is still the most used social network among millennials, that figure is declining. Instagram on the other hand, is increasing its market share amongst millennials.

 

Using Instagram to Reach Millennial Homebuyers:

 

Create a professional page

The first step to creating a successful Instagram that will help you reach the Millennial market is creating a professional Instagram page. If you look at some of the agents that have found success on Instagram, they all have one thing in common, their pages are professional and reflect their brand cohesively.

Although posting photos of your past and current listings is a great first step, don’t forget to incorporate the aspects that highlight what makes the neighborhood that your listing are in so special.

Another good tip is to always stay authentic and approachable. Posting a mix of professional photos of listings with behind-the-scenes content of you at listings or with clients is a great way to put a personal touch on your social media.

 

 

Post engaging content

When it comes to Instagram, there’s a variety of content types to choose from. There are posts you can share to your newsfeed, story posts, and live video. You also have a number of mediums in which you can post content, like videos, photos, boomerangs, and carousel posts.

Choosing a good mix of these types of content outreach strategies will allow you to keep your audience interested in what you have to say and show. Whether it’d be tying back to your specific area of real estate expertise or the actual neighborhood that you have listings in, try to have a cohesive theme throughout all of your content that ties back to what you want your audience to remember about you.

Some examples of great content that Millennials will undoubtedly pick up on include photos and video of local coffee shops, restaurants, and unique things to do that are iconic to the neighborhood you’re listings are in.

 

 

Don’t just post — engage!

In a time when consumers and clients look for personal connections to the brands, causes, and professionals they choose, the best approach isn’t always marketing to people, but engaging with them.

Building a community of people who know and trust you requires you to have conversations with them, especially on a platform that can turn as impersonal as Instagram.

Commenting back to those who take time out of their busy lives to comment on your content gives you the opportunity to reveal your personality to your audience. It also communicates that there’s a real person behind the pictures and videos.

Conversely, go out of your way to find other agent’s Instagram profiles and engage with them! You never know what kind of professional bonds and referrals you might get from simply commenting on other real estate agent’s content.

The most important thing to remember about engaging on Instagram to build relationships with your audience is that it doesn’t happen overnight. You have to be patient and constantly engage in order to reap the benefits of engaging on Instagram.

 

 

Use hashtags effectively

Remember how I mentioned finding other agents and engaging with them on Instagram is a great way to network on social media? Well, hashtags are how you find other agents and how they find you! Not to mention, people looking for listings will be searching these hashtags as well.

Using hashtags helps you increase your exposure and searchability. Instagram allows 30 hashtags, so make sure that you’re using the full 30 for maximum visibility!

Use hashtags like: newly sold, newly listed, your specific neighborhood or location, amenities, the brokerage you work for, and various other trending real estate related hashtags. Placing the hashtags in a comment on your post as opposed to in the actual caption of the post allows you to keep the caption clean and easy to read.

In the end, reaching a Millennial audience isn’t rocket science. Simply be authentic in everything you do and highlight all of the great aspects of working with you as an agent and you’ll be building your Instagram reputation with Millennials in no time.

Remember the famous childhood rhyme, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never harm me?” Well, think again. In today’s digital age, words matter, and more importantly, what people are saying about you can make an impact on your business’ reputation.

 

What are people saying about you?

When was the last time you searched your name to see what came up? Take some time today to search your name on different browsers such as Google, Firefox, or Safari if you are a Mac user.

 

Why is knowing your business footprint important?

According to NAR statistics, 99% of Millennials search online websites compared to 90% of Boomers.  Whether you receive a large amount of your business from referrals or friends, rave reviews and testimonials can catapult you to the top. They can also create strength and value as to why clients should choose YOU.

 

A 2018 survey reveals how consumers search and what is important to them. Here are some key statistics from the survey:

  • 86% of consumers read reviews for local businesses (including 95% of people aged 18-34)
  • 91% of 18-34-year-old consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
  • 80% of 18-34-year-olds have written online reviews – compared to just 41% of consumers over 55

 

3 steps to getting testimonials with ease.

Continue reading

When real estate agents think of social media marketing, the sites that come to mind most often are Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. However, a recent study shows that, while sites like Instagram and Facebook are great for getting your audience to get to know your business, LinkedIn is the proven king of lead generation.

Coming in at a visitor-to-lead conversion rate of 2.74 percent, LinkedIn has a conversion rate that is three times higher than both Twitter and Facebook.

The reason LinkedIn works is because you are reminding your circle of your professional expertise.  You are showcasing to your friends, family and acquaintances your knowledge in a way that is not pushy or overbearing.

This doesn’t mean that you should abandon your Facebook, Instagram and Twitter efforts; it means that you should be actively nurturing your LinkedIn presence in addition to the other social sites in your lead generation mix. Today we’ll be showing you how to make the most of your LinkedIn page, so you can maximize lead generation and get more clients.

Continue reading

Like most real estate professionals, your marketing strategy most likely consists of using Facebook pages to post listings, using Instagram to promote your brokerage, handing out business cards or sending out mailers.

 

While these tactics are tried and true, here are 5 other techniques you can start incorporating into your strategy to set your marketing efforts apart from the crowd to win more leads and grow your business:

Continue reading

Once an online lead goes cold, it’s a guessing game for realtors to decide if they should put effort into re-engaging with the lead or if they’re better left cold.

The majority of online leads are usually people you haven’t met face-to-face, and because the line of communication between you and the lead has weakened, there’s no way of knowing what stage of the home buying or selling process the potential lead is in anymore.

This makes it harder to market to them, and it also means that when you do try to market to them again, you’ll most likely be just another online realtor headshot to them.

Seems discouraging, right? Still, it is important to follow up with these once-hot leads. Just because the lead has gone cold doesn’t mean it can’t be revived. The question is: how do you best re-engage with someone stuck in this stage?

Continue reading

In the digital age, potential home buyers and sellers no longer turn to newspapers and magazines when looking for real estate services. Social media platforms have become the go-to source for potential clients to find everything from listings to realtors.

If your social media brand isn’t up to par, you run the risk of missing out on tons of potential clients; specifically, younger, social media-savvy clients looking to buy their first home.

Although social media brand management may seem complicated there are plenty of ways for you to take charge of your online brand management on your own.

Follow these simple steps to get started building your social brand today.

Continue reading

iStock Social Media IconsDeciding to bring your business into the online marketplace is a big and profound step for any entrepreneur, but it is especially difficult for real estate agents who work solely based on commission and referrals. In a world where social media is a “make or break” medium for many businesses, negative feedback on any platform is a terrifying thought. So how can you effectively bring your business online, build a following of potential leads and respond effectively to feedback? First we begin with, and come back to the basics, content.

The first step to implementing a successful social media and online business plan is coming up with a goal and timeframe for your channels. Setting realistic expectations, with a method of tracking analytics, is how you will be able to measure if your ideas are working efficiently. Along with setting a goal, identify your target audience and where they are most likely to spend time. If you want to target Millennial customers, it would probably be most ideal to utilize Instagram and Facebook versus if you were hoping to target baby boomers, then a blog or newsletter may be better suited.

The most important asset, or weakness, for any medium is content. Content is not only what drives the traffic on your channels, it is what will either bring leads back or push them away. In order to align yourself as a point of interest to potential customers, make sure that your content is interesting and what your consumers are looking for. Gone are the days where pro-business and sales taglines could flood channels of communication, while still achieving leads. Running a channel fueled by too many sales pitches and methods of outreach are sure to repel even the most desperate home buyer. Continue reading