Video duration: 9min 24sec
Marketing today and earning attention from consumers, as a real estate agent, has never been more difficult. Tomorrow, marketing will be even harder because the competition will be even greater.
Consumers are being subjected to an advertising avalanche, with every agent asking people to like them, follow them, friend them, click, share and +1 them. This is in addition to all of the advertising they receive from third-party platforms such as agent review websites, comparison websites and the major property portals.
The internet is a noisy place.
Just check out this chart below which shows the staggering growth of marketing channels over the past 25 years, from eight channels in 1990 to hundreds today – highlighted channels in green indicate real estate specific channels.
Has this made marketing any easier? In some ways, yes. It’s never been more affordable for agents to reach consumers in ways that were unimaginable 10 years ago – i.e. online video, social media etc.
But for the most part, agents are simply applying the same marketing tactics to all of the new channels as they did on the old channels – it’s the same shouting with a different megaphone.
If you really want your digital marketing to be effective, your goal should not be to have a presence on as many channels as possible. Your goal should be to attract and retain as much attention as possible from clients and prospects. And you don’t need hundreds of channels to do that.
Attention is the new economy.
It is the world’s most valuable resource. You shape hearts and minds only with attention. And with online marketing, you’re competing for attention on every channel except one – your own website.
When someone is on your website, you get their full and undivided attention – something you don’t get anywhere else on the internet. Absolutely, have a presence on other channels to engage with clients and prospects. But use all of those other channels as magnets for your website as well.
“What’s in it for me?”
Used right, a personal agent website gives you:
- Improved digital marketing measurement
- Better return-on-investment
- Your website as the number 1 search result for your name, instead of a third-party website
- Less reliance on third-party platforms for new business opportunities
- Lower cost per lead
- Less headaches when other platforms decide to raise prices or limit your reach
An agent leading by example
In 2017, Ben’s total value of properties sold was $255,707,500. Impressive to say the least, it’s also worth noting that 50% of Ben’s sales were off-market ($127,970,000).
Simply creating a personal agent website is not enough and making it all about you is not going to cut it. Yes, of course, you’ll want to include your listings, reviews and bio, but you need to give people other reasons to visit, a reason to keep coming back and a reason to contact you when they’re thinking of selling.
This could include:
- Engaging blog articles
- Informative videos
- Free reports and/or market analysis
- Off-market listings (not listed anywhere else)
- ‘Semi’ automated property valuations
- Doing all of the above consistently!
The new breed of agents are owners, not renters
I don’t believe agents will ever be replaced by so-called online “disruptors”. But I do believe agents who rely solely on third-party platforms for new business opportunities will struggle to compete with agents who truly own their digital presence.
Does this mean you should give up on the major property portals and social media altogether? Of course not. But if they’re the only channels you’re using to market yourself, essentially renting access to their audience, your battle for attention against everything else on those platforms is only going to get harder.