Mark Hickman, Director of Digital Strategy at ONE Sotheby’s International Realty
In my role with the brokerage, I handle many high-level digital strategies and performance marketing campaigns on Google and Meta. I also optimize our website for SEO, work with an automated digital ad platform called “Boost” and help update our expansion efforts on Google Business and Apple Maps. These are just a few of my many tasks at ONE, and I am inspired by our Leadership Team and roster of Associates every day.
In thinking about today’s competitive real estate market, digital marketing is crucial for real estate agents to stand out and connect with potential clients. I constantly get asked by agents how they can grow their business, attract buyers and sellers, and promote a listing.
With more than 95% of home buyers and sellers going “online” to research properties and find agents, having a strong digital presence is essential.
Here are a few key strategies that real estate agents must embrace to successfully market themselves digitally; note there are more, but having these are a must.
Build a Professional Website:
A well-designed website is the foundation of your digital presence, view it as the nucleus of your digital ecosystem. Your website should be user-friendly, mobile-responsive, and contain essential information about you, your services, and the local real estate market. Make sure to include high-quality images, detailed property listings, and client testimonials. Additionally, consider starting a blog to showcase your expertise in the local market and provide valuable information to potential clients.
Optimize for Search Engines (SEO):
Search engine optimization (SEO) is crucial for real estate agents. By optimizing your website for search engines like Google, and Bing, you can increase your visibility in search results when potential clients look for real estate services in your area. Having an affiliation with a global brokerage like Sotheby’s will already allow your website to rank high, because of the authority the brokerage has with Google, but if you are not with a large company, you can still find ways to improve. Focus on using relevant keywords in your content, meta descriptions, and titles.
Local SEO is also essential, as many clients search for real estate agents near them. Make sure to include your location in your website’s content and claim your Google My Business listing. I would also encourage testing out Google’s Local Service Ads.
Leverage social media:
Social media platforms are dynamic tools for real estate agents to connect with clients and build their brand. Create profiles on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and TikTok. Share compelling content, including property listings, market updates, and informative articles. Engage with your audience by responding to comments and messages promptly, something we call “community management” in the industry. Paid advertising on social media can also help
you target specific cities, audiences, and increase your reach. To do this on Meta, make sure you connect your Instagram account with a Facebook Business Account.
Create Compelling Content:
Content marketing is a powerful way to showcase your expertise and connect with potential clients. Consider creating informative blog posts, videos, and infographics that address common questions and concerns in the real estate market. Offer tips for buying or selling a home, explain the mortgage process, or provide insights into your local community. By offering valuable content, you position yourself as a trusted resource and attract potential clients looking for your expertise. Plus, video content is having a moment right now, with statistics showing that buyers who watch a video are more likely to click and fill out a lead capture form, which increases conversions (leads).
Email marketing is a cost-effective way to stay in touch with past and potential clients. Build and maintain a mailing list and send regular newsletters with updates on the local real estate market, new listings, and tips for buyers and sellers. Personalize your emails to make clients feel valued and connected. Additionally, consider sending automated follow-up emails to nurture leads and keep them engaged.
In conclusion, the digital landscape has transformed the way real estate industry connects with clients. To succeed in this competitive industry, real estate agents must embrace digital marketing strategies to grow their sphere and improve their business. By implementing these essential strategies, an agent can position themselves as a knowledgeable and trusted real estate professional in the eyes of potential clients, ultimately achieving success in the digital age.