- Digital marketing is less expensive, CPM, than traditional print efforts, but should still be tackled by experts
- MailChimp's Snap is easy and effective enough to be a stand-alone email marketing tool
- All digital marketing success is predicated on an agent having a contemporary, consistently managed website
Have suggestions for products that you’d like to see reviewed by our real estate technology expert? Email Craig Rowe.
September’s special report on digital marketing, directed by Inman’s Kim Manning, peered into the marketing coffers of readers to pick apart the various tools and platforms used to reach customers online.
Perusing it will show any agent not yet comfortable with investing beyond a website what tools and tactics are worth a chunk of their commission.
On page 8 of the report, Manning summarizes four specific tactics that, if combined, are likely to produce a good return on investment.
- Email marketing
- Digital display advertising
There are a lot of options buried in those four concepts, and I’ve reviewed many of them. Let’s have a look at a few of the standouts.
- Free for up to 2,000 subscribers
- A/B testing (subject line testing)
- Easy sign-up form integration with your Facebook page
MailChimp’s tablet app is more fun and informative to use than it’s desktop, but harder to use to create. Also, I highly recommend MailChimp’s phone app, Snap.
Made for iOS and Android, Snap makes it quick to send an image-based email, using only a few bits of copy, to any of your lists. This is a great tool for announcing new listings or broadcasting happy clients after a close.
- Creates video conversations via email
- Integrates with many existing CRMs
- Gmail embed creates seamless interface
BombBomb video messages can be sent to one or many. All you need is the camera on your laptop or mobile device.
Videos are framed in a branded viewer with your contact information, links or additional calls to action. Videos open in a separate window for the viewer, yet don’t constrain browser performance.
Digital display advertising
- Retargeting display ad system developed for real estate industry
- Ads can be geo-targeted to specific cities
- Very simple to create and customize
The company’s ad building and placement tools enable you to promote specific listings, your company’s brand or your need for new agents, if applicable.
AdWerx uses re-targeting, which means the ads will “follow” interested prospects to different, nationally-trafficked websites.
- Makes testimonials and referrals into a proactive online marketing tactic
- Quickly builds retargeting ads from any image on your iPhone via app or browser dashboard
- Ads originate with viewers who were referred, so they remain always highly specific to your best prospects
When asked to provide a testimonial, clients are not required to log in or create any sort of account. They complete a couple of simple fields, add their notes and submit. It could be done in under a minute.
Ads created can push viewers directly to branded Reach150 page with listed referrals and calls to action.
Well, Facebook is Facebook. There aren’t any other “products.” However, there are plenty of tools to help you create, schedule and monitor your Facebook content.
Why not just work natively in Facebook? Because its campaign and scheduling tools aren’t terrific. It doesn’t assist in creation of content, and in general, it’s ridiculously distracting.
- Provides ongoing stream of relevant news feeds for real estate professionals (Inman has a content partnership with Lumentus.)
- Easy to control content per agent and manage on behalf of agents and teams.
- Focused heavily on content for Facebook.
Lumentus Social is not a pushy, sales-driven marketing tool. I view it as a brand-building customer loyalty creator.
- Campaign creation and scheduling tool is highlight
- Easy to set up contests and promotions
- Posts can be scheduled months ahead of time in only a couple of minutes
The software cleanly maps you from one step to the next, providing metric benchmarks and analytics as you go. Using Rignite’s Campaign tool, its most compelling argument for adoption, agents can build an entire social media plan around a single listing.
- Phone app places brand logo, calls to action in front, during and at the end of videos
- Videos are automatically stored in your online account for ongoing access and sharing
- Edit fonts, background colors and animations, similar to a Powerpoint presentation
Setup involves uploading logos and creating your branding parameters, like background colors and phone numbers.
Busivid then processes that information into an animated opening sequence, in-video watermark and a closing card with a call to action.
- Drag and drop existing videos and pictures to create seamless “stories”
- Included music tracks are suggested based on “flow” of visuals
- Comes with an array of publishing integrations with popular video platforms
The software doesn’t use a highly technical, timeline-based editing user experience. You don’t have to worry about sound levels or deleting background noise. This is a simple tool to make your marketing look sophisticated.
Have a technology product you would like to discuss? Email Craig Rowe.