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  • Create community events to connect with potential future buyers face to face.
  • Do something new and exciting that no one else is doing.
  • Although marketing is sales, ignore sales terms and encourage collaboration.

SAN FRANCISCO — Marketing can be sticky, but if you’re yourself, you may be a lot more successful. At Inman Connect San Francisco, some of the most successful real estate agents in their areas shared the various ways to connect with local buyers and sellers.

They all have one thing in common: They’re authentic.

Vicki Monteagudo with Century 21 Tri-Cities in Washington melded her two companies to help bring high-quality marketing materials to the real estate space. Her full-service marketing and design agency has graphic designers, photographers, stagers and a copywriter, as well as an event director who helps the company stay in touch with the community.

Events, like wine tastings and kid-friendly happenings, are Monteagudo’s way of keeping close contact with the locals, as well as working with charities. The branding strategy is typically inexpensive — a couple hundred dollars; not much more when compared to the price of other marketing materials — and provides a resource for social media sharing and community outreach.

Monteagudo says her marketing efforts are about 70/30 traditional. Her in-house design team works on signage, fliers and all print collateral.

Sara MacLennan, the co-founder of Liv Real Estate in Canada, believes that having a strong presence in your community is the key to marketing success.

Liv Real Estate has about 20 agents in its office, and one of the most important aspects of its business is taking out any type of sales terms, even within the office.

MacLennan believes having a strong, collaborative environment where everyone is aware of what is going on helps to keep things positive and productive. Having a team of niche professionals who can manage specific tasks based on expertise is her motto.

The company’s marketing efforts are almost entirely digital, with its most exciting offering being 3-D tours. They work with a local photographer who has a 3-D camera to generate 3-D models and tours of every home the company lists, no matter the price range.

This helps buyers to know before even arriving at a home that they are highly interested in it because they can zoom in and out — basically, they have already visited the home virtually.

Danielle Lazier

Danielle Lazier

Danielle Lazier with Climb SF was early to embrace technology; she started blogging in 2002, writing about other people’s listings. When buyers got interested in tech quicker than agents, and because she got her name out to buyers, she began to build a team with a fresh twist on the traditional marketing tactics.

One of the most exiting marketing tactics Lazier and the Climb SF team took on was a video listing for a special property that got more than 70,000 views. Featuring two drag queens, the video gained a lot of attention and helped to bring in more interest to the company.

And to the people that it offends? She says to live by your value system each day and don’t care it if offends people. If their video does offend people, she says she isn’t interested in working with them anyway.

Lazier says the best thing to do with marketing is to be in as many places as possible, try to stand out and do what makes you feel good. Being as real as possible and showing people who you are before they physically meet you is the key to good marketing.

Pam Blair paired real estate with her other hobby when she founded YogaBug. The yoga instructor says her company is relationship-oriented and “pesticide-free.” She takes what she’s learned on her yoga mat and into the real estate space, most notably through face-to-face interactions and being real, she says.

Her unique marketing tactics are taken to the yoga studio and the dog park. She says her two dogs are more popular than she is, so she uses it to her advantage. Living in Portland, Oregon, she spends an hour or so at the dog park each day and meets other community members there.

Each day she takes a photo with a dog at the park and uploads the photo to the website’s “dog house.” She says this is a great way to meet with people and drive them to her website because each featured dog owner gets a card to remember the website.

Blair focuses primarily on traditional marketing in her hip, trendy Portland neighborhood. Partnering with local businesses for fliers and mailers and putting on a wellness series event is her way of connecting face to face with current and future homebuyers.

She also has branded yoga mats that she gives away to yoga-related charities through raffles and brings to her classes.

All in all, they all say: Be bold, be yourself.

Email Kimberly Manning.

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