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Lag in digital marketing

Companies cite complexity, smaller budgets

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Real estate companies have been slow to embrace online marketing, according to a survey by Brandeis University's International Business School and digital marketing firm inSegment, Inc. According to the National Association of Realtors, 90 percent of homebuyers start their real estate search online. The survey, a "Digital Marketing Survey of the U.S. Real Estate Industry," conducted in 2009 and released this month, found that 76 percent of surveyed companies commit 40 percent or less of their marketing budgets to digital marketing, preferring traditional venues like newspapers and display ads.The survey covered three hundred companies nationwide in investment, commercial and residential real estate. The survey was conducted through confidential phone interviews of key decision-makers in each of the companies, according to inSegment.More than half of participating companies (58 percent) did not run search-engine marketing campaigns. Of those who do search-engine marketing,...