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When new technologies emerge, there’s a tendency to discard everything that came before, even if it previously worked well. When real estate agents utilize various ways to boost their referral numbers, they can take advantage of high-tech strategies without forgetting old-school methods.

Here are five examples of fresh takes on traditional marketing that agents can do to connect with prospects.

1. Use digital open house sign-in sheets

Not long ago, when real estate agents organized open houses, they created paper lists and encouraged people to provide their contact info if they wanted to know more about an agency or future properties. However, that method became cumbersome because it required extra time for data entry after an event

It’s faster and more efficient for agents to use Google Forms and create a sign-in station near the front door of the open house. Having a digital sign-in sheet removes the hassle of trying to read a person’s handwriting or decipher digits in a phone number.

2. Upgrade your business cards

Business cards are still part of the marketing mix for getting more referrals, but they’ve evolved. For example, some of them incorporate QR codes people can scan to instantly go to a real estate agent’s website.

There are also apps that scan business cards and store the details, catering to people who are prone to losing the physical versions.

Using either one or both of these options help agents keep up with the times and make things easier for potential clients as well as themselves.

3. Create calls to action

Calls to action have long been part of classified ads, direct mail pieces and emails. Real estate agents can make them more relevant to today’s consumers by reducing the steps people have to take to get in contact — just by tweaking an email signature.

Real estate agents should continue adding custom signatures to the emails they send clients. However, those signatures should be updated so that they’re even more effective at achieving the end goal of getting more referrals.

Using a call to action in the email signature that links to a referral email body eliminates the possibility that someone mistypes an email address or writes a vague subject line that gets overlooked.

4. Hold informational webinars

It’s crucial for real estate agents to demonstrate they understand the market and have the knowledge needed to help clients achieve desirable results. Some agents rent meeting rooms in hotels or space in community centers to give informal talks about topics of interest to people who may be buying or selling homes soon.

Holding a free webinar is a way to update the traditional type of information session while potentially appealing to people outside of the immediate area as well. Many platforms allow a live chat feed that permits people to immediately ask questions or give input if something isn’t clear.

Also, this method of connecting with an audience can be significantly less expensive and time-consuming than renting space, sending physical invitations and other necessities for in-person events.

An agent could also collect data with a Google form similar to the one mentioned in the first tip, asking participants which parts of a session benefitted them most and how to improve future events.

5. Give freebies

Pens, magnets and keychains bearing the name and contact details of a real estate firm can help increase visibility in the marketplace and cause an uptick in referrals. Those promotional goodies are still worthwhile for particular events, such as trade shows, but they aren’t ideal for reaching the public at large.

E-books and printable checklists ensure agents don’t leave out people who initially interact with their firms online. Plus, it’s easy to make a customized footer that’s pasted onto the content for a cohesive look that increases branding opportunities. These kinds of freebies are appropriate rewards for people who fill out a “Contact Us” form too.

Efforts to update lead-generation tactics usually pay off for the real estate agents implementing them. Besides helping you gain traction in a crowded marketplace, they show potential clients that you use technology in purposeful ways.

Kayla Matthews covers smart technology and future trends for websites like VentureBeat, Curbed and Motherboard. You can read more posts by Kayla on her personal tech blog: Productivity Bytes.

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