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Archive for Real Estate Internet Marketing

Is Your Email Address Selling You Short?

Email Addresses for Realtors®

Do you know that your email address can help you – or hurt you? We have so many choices regarding how and where to create email accounts, but when you are in business you have to follow some key strategies. Here are some ways to make sure your email address is an asset, and not a liability.

Don’t Use the Wrong @ Ending

Is your email address still based on your email provider? If you are using an @hotmail.com, @msn.com, @aol.com (yes, there are some), @yahoo.com, @comcast.net, or anything along that line, change it today!

As a professional, you want your email address to be @yourcompany.com. That’s it. Anything else makes you look like an amateur, and that’s definitely not the image you want when helping people with the biggest purchase of their lives!

In addition, if you use @gmail.com or @yahoo.com, changes made to the law in 2016 mean that few of your emails will be delivered to customers. You need a proper email service provider for marketing.

Do Use an Email Service Provider

Most personal email accounts, including those you get from your internet provider, include anti-marketing provisions in the fine print. In plain English, this means that you cannot use a personal account to send bulk email.

If you don’t already have an email service provider like MailChimp, Aweber, Infusionsoft, or a similar system, it’s essential to set that up right away. We use Infusionsoft and love it – we highly recommend it to anyone who needs highly customizable email marketing!

Do Use a Professional Email Name

Fortunately, most people know that using some form of their real name is the best way to create a business email address. However, there are those who are still using silly nicknames, childhood jokes, misspellings, or other inappropriate email addresses.

It’s also important not to use spammy sounding email addresses, like AwesomeRealtor@company.com or WeSellHomes@company.net. Keep it simple and make it easy for your recipients to know who they are receiving an email from. Use your name as the first portion of your email address.

Finally, don’t include anyone else in your email address. RonandSally@provider.com should be avoided, even for personal use. Since Realtors® market to their circle of influence regularly, even personal email accounts should be professional.

The Right Email Address Helps Boost Your Marketing

Your email address can make the difference between someone working with you and not. If you seem sloppy, amateur, or lazy due to your email address, you’ll lose business and struggle to communicate professionally.

However, the right email address can build your brand. If people see your company’s name each time they interact with you, you are creating awareness and name recognition. When it comes time to choose a real estate agent or give a referral, they won’t have to struggle to remember your real name or the agency you work for. It will be right there, in your email address!

Does your email address or overall marketing need a refresh? Whether you need new business cards or other print marketing, we are here for you. Contact Printerbees today!

Why You Need to Own Your (Marketing) Home

Own Your Marketing Home

When you talk to your clients, there are a variety of reasons that they are planning to buy a home. As a Realtor®, you understand that there are a variety of benefits to owning a home instead of renting.

What you may not have realized is that it’s just as important for real estate agents to own their marketing home as well. Owning your marketing space means having a website that you have arranged hosting for. For instance, a YourRealEstate.Com website would be a space you own.

Social media like Facebook and Instagram, non-self-hosted websites like YourRealEstate.wordpress.com, and free websites you get from other providers are all non-owned, or rented, marketing spaces. Renting your marketing has a lot of drawbacks, just like renting a home.

Rent is Always Going Up

Just like rented homes and apartments are always getting more expensive, being seen on a “rented” marketing space is more and more expensive over time as well.

On Facebook, you used to be able to reach a lot of people for free simply by having a Facebook page and building a following. Now, Facebook is moving more and more into “pay to play,” where you have to pay for ads to reach people. Organic reach is plummeting.

And there’s nothing you can do about it because you’re renting.

Instead, own your online property (your website), and you can get 100% of the views you earn from fans. No one will be hiding your page from your fans.

You Don’t Control the Rules When You Rent

Rented properties have a lot of rules. There are rules about how long someone can live with you if they aren’t on the lease. Rules about what pets you can have. Rules about whether you can paint or renovate.

The same is true when you rent your marketing location online. Facebook ads require a specific text-to-image ratio, or they will be rejected. Instagram limits how many hashtags you can use per post. No matter where you rent, the landlord makes the rules.

When you have your own website, you make the rules. Want to add a community page? Go for it! Want a page that’s nothing but pictures? Perfect! Would you like to create a community page where visitors can comment and ask questions? No problem!

Rented Properties Can Go Under

When it comes to physical properties, they aren’t going to disappear physically, but the ownership can fail and cause a significant decline in the value and experience of living in the building.

With rented marketing properties, however, they can completely fail and disappear. Sometimes an upgrade or a hacker causes the site to be down for a few hours. Sometimes a business completely fails, and the website is taken down.

No one expects that to happen to behemoths like Facebook and Instagram, but no one expected AOL to go from internet dominance to being completely irrelevant either. Don’t put too much faith in an online property that you don’t control.

You Can Combine Renting and Owning

This article isn’t intended to keep you from using social media or other “rented” outreach to connect with your audience. We’re just trying to show the importance of having a marketing platform that’s fully yours.

Unlike choosing a home, with marketing you can (and should!) combine renting and owning. Have your own website, and don’t be shy about directing your followers and fans from social media to your site.

If something goes wrong or the rules change, you’ll have a lot of people already accustomed to visiting your website. You don’t have to rely on Facebook approving your ads. You can draw people over into a space you control, and show them what you want.

Do you have a new website and need to update the contact information on your business cards or real estate marketing postcards? We’d love to help – contact us today!

Transform Your Real Estate Website With a Community Page

Real Estate Website Community Page

It’s important to have a real estate website in this digital age, but it can be hard to know how to get people to actually view it. And it seems like an incredible waste unless you’re actually getting leads!

I get it.

Fortunately, there’s an easy way to transform your real estate website that will bring you traffic while also giving you material to share on social media that will get great leads to visit your site.

It’s called a community page. Here’s how it works.

What is a Community Page?

A website is far more than an online business card. It should have several other elements, including a page that highlights your current listings.

One of the elements that can make the biggest difference is a community page. Very simply, a community page is a website that highlights the neighborhood(s) you want to farm.

The goal of a community page is to be a go-to location where those living in your target neighborhood, and those visiting or moving there, can get great community highlights. Here are some of the things you can post on the community page of your website:

  • What special events are going on in the neighborhood? You can post the times of Visiting Santa events, holiday light shows, tree lightings, fireworks, cookouts, sidewalk sales, and more.
  • Shows and Entertainment. Is a band coming to town? A popular comedian? Mention it on your community page and provide a link to buy tickets.
  • How is the local high school doing in the current season’s sport? Is there a local college or pro team that’s popular?
  • New Openings. Is a new business opening soon? If there’s a mall in the neighborhood, there are likely to be occasional changes to the store lineups. Be a source of that information!

It doesn’t have to be hard to find this information. Much of it is available in local newspapers or on a variety of local websites – school websites, venue websites, and more. Your goal is to consolidate it into a one-stop-shop – on your website!

What are the Benefits?

If you’re going to take the time to add this page to your website, what are you going to gain? That’s a very important question to answer before you take the time to do something like this!

There are a ton of benefits to having a community page. Here are just a few:

  • Ready to Share on Social Media! If you need something to share on your social media sites, look no further than your own community page. Share an upcoming event, show, sport, or new opening. You can share it more than once, and you can share on many different social media accounts.
  • You Become an Expert. If someone stops you on the street and has a question about what’s going on in your target neighborhood, you won’t have to hem and haw, trying to remember something relevant. Everything about the neighborhood will be fresh in your mind.
  • You Have Events to Share in Newsletters and Postcards. When you combine your online community page with regular farming methods through the mail, you can reuse the same information multiple times. Share items from your community page on postcards and in newsletters, and include a link for them to go online to your website!

How a Community Page Brings in Leads

If you have a community page that is updated regularly, gets shared on social media, and is part of your print marketing, will it bring in leads?

In a word, yes.

A popular community page will make your name stand out among other Realtors® in your area. You will be top of mind simply because people are used to visiting your website for relevant community information.

Events and articles from your page will be shared on social media, not only by you, but by others in the community. They will use your links to invite friends and family to join them at local entertainment and sports shows. This will increase the “know, like, and trust” factors and encourage people to want to do business with you.

Finally, when people are visiting your website regularly, they are seeing your listing links and your contact information on a regular basis. This will plant in their mind the idea that if they need real estate help, they should contact you. They may also recommend you to others as a Realtor® based on your community page.

A community page on your website is a small change that can bring immense rewards. While it will take a bit of time to find your go-to sources that you need to update your page regularly, once you have them updating your page will take less than 30 minutes. The benefits of being the “Realtor® in the know” and having all of that content for your marketing are worth far, far more.

Are you ready to start sharing community events through your postcard and newsletter marketing? At Printerbees, we have your print marketing needs covered. Contact us today and we’ll help get you positioned for success in 2017!

How to Generate Leads from Your Real Estate Website

Real Estate Websites

Everyone in real estate understands how important it is to generate leads. Without new leads you have no one to pitch your services to, which means no buyers or sellers and no money.

There are dozens of ways to generate leads. Some Realtors® do cold calling, many farm neighborhoods with print marketing, and others do social media outreach. In all of these efforts, the real estate website can sometimes be overlooked.

Your real estate website is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You should make it one of your primary ambassadors. When you tie it in with your other marketing efforts, you can see your number of leads multiply quickly.

Here are some steps to take to generate leads from your real estate website.

Make Your Real Estate Website Your #1 Fan

When you create content for your website, you shouldn’t focus on yourself. You should focus on the outcomes your customers are most looking for and how you can help them achieve those goals.

That doesn’t mean that your website shouldn’t showcase how amazing you are. It’s just that those great kudos should come from someone else – preferably your previous customers.

I’ve talked recently about how important it is to get online reviews as well as customer referrals. Those online reviews belong on your real estate website.

Think of your real estate website as a huge party where everyone is talking about what a great Realtor® you are. You want prospects to go to that party!

Demonstrate Your Expertise

Have you ever noticed that there are people who talk about being great basketball players, but the really great ones don’t just talk – they actually do it?

In the same way, don’t use your website just to show what a great Realtor® you are. Use it to demonstrate that expertise as well.

Show your recently sold listings. Write articles that show you are knowledgeable about the neighborhoods your serve. Post videos that show you are technically savvy and know how to give a home its best showing. Share buying tips that help house hunters understand that you know what they’re looking for.

Use Your Real Estate Website to Capture Leads

The best real estate website in the world can’t capture leads for you if you don’t include easy ways to contact you. Having a variety of touchpoints is important because different people prefer different things.

You should have a form that allows people to enter their name, email address, and even their phone number to join your monthly newsletter or email list. You should also prominently list your business phone number.

You may also want to include a contact form that allows someone to email you a question or inquiry. Finally, be sure to list your office location as well, because some people like face-to-face conversations.

Integrate Your Website with Other Marketing Efforts

Have you ever heard the phrase, “All dressed up with nowhere to go”? Unfortunately, that describes many real estate websites.

Some Realtors® cover all the steps listed here, and still don’t get leads from their website. The reason is that they aren’t getting any traffic to the site.

You have to integrate your website into your other marketing efforts so that your prospects become aware of it and visit you online. Here are some ideas:

  • List your website on your postcard marketing outreaches, and offer a free download of valuable information in exchange for their email address and phone number.
  • Share new listings from your website onto Facebook, Pinterest, and other social media.
  • Include links to new listings at the bottom of your email newsletters.
  • Promote your blog posts or website articles with a Facebook ad.

Your website should be your most tireless promoter. When you follow these steps, you’ll have a website that represents you at your best, is full of raving fans, and shows off your expertise. You’ll be able to capture new leads quickly and easily.

Ready to integrate your website into your print marketing campaigns? We’re here to help. Take a look at our templates today!

Real Estate Emails That Make an Impact!

Real Estate Emails That Have an Impact

The other day I got an email from someone who has a very professional website. Their business is all about constructing a professional brand image online. I love their website!

There was one problem. The email was dismal.

It was full of grammatical errors. It was too short. It lacked a point. It gave a sloppy call-to-action that directed me to a blog post that wasn’t even connected to the company.

It did NOT make me want to work with that company.

Is that the impact that your emails have? Do they match up to your professionalism, or do they fall short?

You can create real estate emails that make a real impact and build your business. For every $1 in marketing, email marketing can return $44.25! If you’re not seeing that, consider making these changes.

Use the Right “From” Address

One of the most important aspects of an email is often overlooked – what “from” address shows when you email your list?

If it’s not a personal email that seems to be coming directly from you, you have a major problem. In fact, the “from” address of an email matters more than the subject line. And the subject line is vital!

People aren’t interested in irrelevant email, and an email that comes from a company (info@company.com, for instance) screams advertising. And an unknown Gmail address seems like spam. Instead, make sure that your name is involved. That way, your recipient knows exactly who is contacting them.

An effective “from” address has these characteristics:

  • Comes from someone the contact knows and trusts (you, not your company)
  • Helps readers find your messages if they get misrouted or put in the junk folder
  • Stands out in a sea of other email addresses

Be Personal and Engaging

Using your customer’s name – without overusing it, of course – is essential to making a connection with your reader. The subject line might say, “-Name-, thought you might enjoy this article” or something equally personal.

In addition, an email should always begin with the prospect’s name. That way, everyone feels like they are hearing directly from you even if the email is automated.

Once you have the personalization, be engaging! Don’t send boring, shop-talk style emails. No one wants to read that. Instead, focus on the following types of email:

  • Q&A: Answer common questions that your prospects have
  • Story-Based: Tell a story about something you encountered and then draw a short applicable lesson from it. The story should be fun – and don’t underestimate how much people want to know the real you!
  • Testimonial: Use a review or testimonial to share a great experience that a client had with you. It helps others want to work with you as well. Be sure to end with “This is why I love what I do”, along with a gentle call-to-action. No need to be too salesy.
  • Drive to a Blog Post. If you have a blog, consider having one email a month that directs people to the blog. That will get readers to your site so they can see your listings and other materials.
  • Having local events can be a great way to share information and get leads. Use your email list to promote any local appreciation or workshop events that you hold.

Be Entertaining

One mistake many Realtors® – and other professionals – make with email marketing is that they think their subscribers want to learn more information.

The truth is, everyone has far too much information. No one wants to learn more! Instead, you need to be as entertaining as you can be. Try to be 80% entertaining and 20% educating. That way, you are getting a point across, but you’re doing it in a really fun way.

Don’t feel like you have to be a professional comedian to entertain. All of us have silly, funny, or even embarrassing things happen in our daily lives that we can share. Those things are often great stories! By sharing a story about yourself, your family, or your business, you can be authentic while also selling your business.

Be Consistent

Are you worried about how often you email? Do you wonder if you email too much? Let me tell you a secret – there’s no magic number. The trick is to be consistent.

If you email once a month – sometimes – but are inconsistent, you’ll get complaints and unsubscribes every time you send an email.

On the other hand, if you set the expectation that you’ll email every week or once a month, and you actually do, you’ll get more engagement, fewer complaints, and fewer drop-offs. It’s not about how often you email. It’s about setting an expectation and being consistent.

Consider varying your emails to make them easier to craft and more predictable for readers. For instance, you could email weekly using a cycle like this:

  • Week 1: Just for Fun
  • Week 2: Testimonial and Ask for Referrals
  • Week 3: Story and Ask for Business
  • Week 4: Drive to a Blog Post

This way, you never wonder what to say next. Your readers will also know what to expect. The consistency will work wonders.

Email marketing is very effective. It just has to be done correctly. It’s also best done in conjunction with regular postcard and mailing campaigns. If you’re ready for your next batch of Just Listed or Just Sold postcards, let us help! We have tons of templates to choose from.

How do you use email marketing? Share in the comments!

How Savvy Realtors® Boost Their Reputation with a Blog

Blogging for Realtors

We’re excited to feature a guest post from April Goudy of MySmartBlog.com!

As a knowledgeable Realtor®, you already know that your reputation is everything. People simply refuse to work with those they can’t trust, which is why establishing your credibility is paramount – especially if you’re only just starting out. And in the online marketing realm, one of the best ways to establish your reputation is by creating a blog.

So how can you build a great reputation by publishing blog articles on your website? Here’s what you need to know.

Shift Your Mindset from Cost to Investment

Business owners, such as Realtors®, must carefully differentiate between costs and investments when making important financial decisions, and this holds true when you are thinking about blog marketing expenses as well.

A cost is something that generally will provide an immediate result. An investment, on the other hand, will have a long-term residual return. When it comes to blog marketing for your business, there are three good reasons why you need to think about this as an investment rather than a cost.

  1. Building Brand Awareness

Marketing generally has many purposes, and one of the primary purposes for most marketing efforts is to build brand awareness and develop or enhance your reputation in some way. Blog marketing essentially creates a series of blog posts that can shape the image your target audience has of your brand.

  1. Increasing Visibility

Another goal of marketing is to increase visibility for your brand. Each blog post that you create may be linked to from other online sources or a previous blog post. Your consumers may also send links of the posts to their own friends and family members.

  1. Generating Need

A blog post can be created so that it defines consumer needs and shows how your products or services may meet those needs. The blog posts will generate an immediate response from your consumers when they are initially posted, but they also can remain online for others to view. This also has long-term benefits for your business.

Generate Credibility with High-Quality Authoritative Content

‘Content is King’ is a good saying, but ‘GOOD Content is King’ is a better saying, for a good reason, with so many places to go online to consume content, every blog has to stand apart. Focus on in-depth blog posts that are well-written and cover an aspect of the industry that isn’t discussed much.

Writing to get to the top of search engines a great side benefit of having an engaging blog. However, writing your content exclusively for search engines will alienate your readers – especially if you’re using outdated SEO tactics. Exceptional writing stands out in an age where most blogs are quickly pieced together just to have something to post each day.

Branch Out Into Other Content Arenas

A really well-written, long from blog post can be deconstructed to make several additional pieces of content that cover the same topic, but target different users.

  • Social media is an incredibly useful tool for exposing content to new readers. One of the major benefits of social media is the ability to share content that stands out with people who will, in turn, share it with each one of their friends and followers.
  • A short YouTube video highlighting some key points from the blog post.
  • A podcast can be a useful way to expose a blog post to new listeners and boost the traffic back to the blog.

Determining how to invest your marketing funds is rarely a simple task. You want to generate an immediate return, but some marketing methods also will give you a long-term benefit. There are numerous marketing methods that you can choose to use for your business, and blog posts are just one. With how cost-effective and advantageous it can be to invest in blog marketing, you may consider including this in your overall strategy.

Ready to kick your blog writing up a notch? We can help! At MySMARTblog we improve communications between busy real estate and mortgage professionals and their clients. We provide Done-For-You, industry specific blog post, websites and social syndication. Happy Blogging!

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Five Things Your Real Estate Website Must Have

Five Things Your Real Estate Website Must Have

If you leave certain things off of your real estate website, you’re leaving money on the table and daring your leads to go elsewhere.

You may have a beautiful and expensive website, with all the bells and whistles. But if you don’t have the following must-haves, you’re going to have an expensive site that doesn’t perform.

Every Real Estate Website Needs: A Simple Contact Form

Make it as easy as possible for people to get in touch with you from anywhere on your site at any given time. Don’t make them work! And don’t make them click around too much to get in touch with you.

Use a simple form or sidebar on all your pages as part of your design, but carefully consider what information you need to collect.

“A long contact form can be very overwhelming to look at and scare your potential customer right off your website. Keep the number of fields on your contact forms between 3 and 5 max,” wrote Marvin Russell, Founder of MySiteAuditor and Checkli.

“If your website offers a service, then your contact form shouldn’t try to sell that service. It should only try to get your foot in the door by asking a few basic questions.  NeilPatel.com was able to increase conversions by 26% by removing 1 field from his contact form.”

Every Real Estate Website Needs: Local Listings

This is what many website visitors are here to see. Don’t put too much branding between your visitors and your listings. People may like you, you may be amazing, but they’re here to see houses. So keep your listings fresh, current, and easily accessible.

Use this great article that explains how you can quickly and easily integrate MLS listings onto your site (for free or cheap) by using WordPress plugins.

Every Real Estate Website Needs: An Active Blog

The key word is active.

That can mean a lot of things to a lot of different people. This may mean twice a week, or twice a month. The number isn’t that important. The key thing is that you come up with a content schedule and stick to it.

Also, make sure your blogs have real value. Of course, every listing should get it’s own blog and landing page. But make sure your blog contains more. Helpful advice on how to buy a home is always welcome. It also makes you look like an expert, not just a salesperson.

Every Real Estate Website Needs: Local Events

Don’t ignore the value of this. It goes beyond just doing favors for local businesses and clubs. It makes you look like a pillar in the community, and in-touch with everyone. By listing local event on your website, you can become a go-to site for reasons other than your listings, which is great for your brand.

It also helps your search engine optimization (SEO) when these events’ web pages link back to you. Backlinks are SEO gold and what puts you above the other guys in search results.

Every Real Estate Website Needs: A Simple Web Address

Read your website’s web address (URL) over the phone to someone. How slow did you have to read it? Did you have to repeat it? Have you had people type it in wrong? These are all signs your website’s URL is too complicated. It should be easily read out loud and easy to remember.

“Forget about hard-to-spell, long and clever words or anything too complex—unless you want to make it hard for people to remember your URL. Do yourself a favor: dump the cutesy names and don’t use numbers—they won’t help. Best practice? A name with only one possible spelling,” wrote Tom Lowery, entrepreneur, author, corporate training specialist.

So if you’re building a new site, focus your time and money on simple and intuitive contact forms, dynamic listing feeds, a well thought-out blog, local events, and a simple and memorable URL. If you already have a site, review it for these things.

If you have a new URL make sure all your print materials like business cards and brochures have the correct info. If you need to update your print materials, you can easily create your own design online, and make sure your brand resonates.

How Real Estate Websites Get Noticed – Rise Above the Competition

Real Estate Websites - Rise Above

Google “Your area + Realtor®”… Are you the only one to come up? We didn’t think so. Are you on the first page to come up? If not, we can help.

There has never been a bigger need to own your area’s webspace, because there has never been more competition. But the good news is, not everyone knows how to properly cultivate a web presence. So rising above the competition will be a whole lot easier once you read this article.

Here are 4 things you need to do to rise above the pack.

Put a Keyword in Your Real Estate Website’s URL

Let’s start with your website’s URL. You may be tempted to use your name, because it’s simple. That’s logical, but wrong.

“Odds are users are googling local terms to find services like yours, and not your name. Many agents make the mistake of getting a domain that showcases their name, but miss a great SEO opportunity to get traffic by using search terms in their domain name,” said content strategist, Sandra Manzanares.

So instead of Paul-Bennet.com, go for something like EastPhillyHomes.com.

Monitor Rival Real Estate Websites

There are actually a lot of tools out there that will help you spy on the other guys. There’s no shame in doing this. Actually, it’s irresponsible not to.

See what types of content they’re publishing and see how it performs. This can give you a great idea of the types of things you should be doing, or the things to avoid completely.

Of course, always stay original. But stay on top of what they’re doing, so you don’t miss any opportunities.

Use Google Adwords

You may be putting this one off because you think this will take too much time and money. It’s true, this will take time and money. But, if you devote a little bit now, you can have a well-defined Adwords strategy in place in a few months. You don’t have to beat everyone right away. You just need enough growth to invest in yourself and your success.

“Yes, you won’t do as well as those who have the wherewithal to spend vast amounts of money on their AdWords campaigns,” wrote inbound marketing expert, Matthew Bushery.

“Over time, though, as you learn the ropes and gain a greater understand of the types of keywords that create the most traffic and leads, you’ll grow your business and, in turn, be able to allocate more ad spend to AdWords.”

Stay on Top of the News and React

Is something making real estate headlines? You can piggyback on its traction in the news, while defining yourself as the expert.

This is called “newsjacking.” There is always something real estate related in the news– it could be new by-laws, or market shifts. It’s great to be the first one to react. But you need to be the first one to publish a meaningful response. Or you need to be the first to position your reaction in a way that makes people want to click it.

Complicated changes to real estate rules/ laws? Publish a piece that puts them in plain English. New stats about the market? Tell the readers exactly what that will mean for their asking/ closing price.

Everyone has a website, but not everyone is doing these things. Most Realtors® put their name in their URL, instead of their area. At the same time, most will also get so caught up in their own site, they ignore what everyone else is doing. Or they may feel they don’t have time to look into Google Adwords, or blog about current trends. That’s great news for you. Because these are the building blocks you need to create an effective web presence.

While you’re revisiting your digital advertising, how does your print marketing look? Is it time for new business cards or postcards?  If you need new materials, you can easily customize your own design online and give your branding a quick refresh.

How Real Estate Websites Get Noticed – Own Social Media

Real Estate Websites - Social Media

Not surprisingly, while 84% of Realtors are active on social media, only 55% said they’re comfortable in using social media for business.

Being comfortable with how you use social media and properly integrating it with your real estate website starts with building a system and schedule, then seeing and reacting to the results.

Let’s take a look at how to make you comfortable in social (media) situations.

Great Real Estate Websites Make it Easy to Share

Any real estate website should make it easy for the user to find the Facebook or Twitter button to share your materials. This is especially important in building traction for your blogs, listings, and events. As your viewers share the blogs and other articles you promote, you’ll gain more visibility on social media.

Share buttons are quick and easy to add, so make sure they’re on every page.

Don’t Ask for Likes. Earn Them

A lot of businesses will share a piece of content and ask “Please Like or comment on our latest blog.” You can do better than that.

Lead with the value that your post gives your readers, and give them a reason to click on it, instead of asking them to do it.

Your blog/video, and social media headline should be similar, in that they both tease the value of what you’re offering. But the social media headline should be slightly longer.

  • Headline: “The Top 5 Mistakes Every New Homeowner Makes”
  • Social Headline: “The average homeowner will pay $5,400 more than they should. Read how to avoid this.”

You may be tempted to use an Upworthy-style headline, that shoots for an emotional response while leaving the audience in suspense.

“But just because it works for a site like Upworthy, it doesn’t mean that every publication should use it. Different headlines work for different sites. It all depends on your content and niche,” wrote Onboardly’s Renee Warren.

“In fact, people are already sick of the style. Google ‘Upworthy headlines’ and articles with the words ‘insufferable’ and ‘annoying’ pop up.  There comes a point when the intrigue is just plain predictable. And then it’s on to the next trend.”

Videos Help Your Real Estate Websites and Social Presence

Start creating videos of your listings and virtual tours. Then upload them to your YouTube channel and share them on your Facebook, Twitter and real estate website.

“Did you know that 73% of homeowners say they’re more likely to list with a realtor who offers to create a video for them, but only 4% of agents put their listings on YouTube?” said communications expert, Jess Maria.

Don’t Just Post on Your Own Page

Part of building a social presence means stepping beyond the safe confines of your own page. Look around social media and find conversations that homebuyers are having. Add your comments to conversations about real estate in your area. Offer your expertise when a question is asked.

When you do comment, don’t wedge a sales pitch into a normal conversation. That alienates people and may even get you blocked in certain places. Be casual, but helpful. And if you have legitimately helped people, they will seek you out.

If you’ve never done any of these things, they may take a bit of practice before you’re comfortable. But, start with adding the share button on your website, then focus on adding more useful blogs to your presence, and then you can work up to shooting videos and commenting on other people’s posts.

While you’re revisiting your digital advertising, how does your print marketing look? Is it time for new business cards or postcards?  If you need new materials, you can easily create your own design online, and give your branding a quick refresh.

How Real Estate Websites Get Noticed – Get More Leads

Real Estate Websites - Get More Leads

Is your website making you money, or costing you money? The sad truth is too many real estate websites are there because the Realtor® knows they need one, but it actually shows no return on investment.

In reality, a well-designed website should be a lead generation machine. It should be one of your strongest sales tools.

If you’re not getting leads from your site, the good news is you can tweak your site to optimize it, without having to tear it down and building it again. Just a fixer-upper.

Here are a few things you can do to help your website build your business.

Keep Your Contact Information on Every page

This is probably the biggest lead optimization fault of any website, not just real estate websites.

Don’t make it hard for people to contact you. Keep your contact information on every page of your site, so you’re never more than a click or quick call away.

“With search engines being such an important driver of inbound website traffic, you can’t always predict where people are going to enter your website,” notes Jonathan Bentz, marketing manager, Netrepid, a provider of professional services.

“Having your contact info on every page of your website increases the likelihood that people will contact you.”

Lead Capture Forms Help Real Estate Websites

If someone doesn’t want to use your contact information, they should just be able to enter a bit of info on the side of any page to reach you.

I know we’re in the business of qualifying our leads, but try not to ask for too much information in this form. Full name, email address and a question is usually quite enough.

An average 5% dip in conversion rate by including a phone number field. Unless your business is based on post-click sales calls, avoid this field at all cost. Not many people like to have someone call them (unless it’s critical to their personal success). said Conversion guru, Oli Gardner.

Use a Call to Action That Gets People Moving

Sometimes a would-be client is on your site, and they leave without contacting you. Why did this happen? Maybe because you haven’t given them a clear and compelling next step or call-to-action.

Say someone is looking at one of your listings. Your first instinct may be to end the page with something like “For more information on this home, click here.” That doesn’t really entice the browsers. Consider a more active, “Click here to get a tour of this home.” It’s what most browsers want. So give it to them right away.

And use different CTAs, because not every page will have the same logical next step.

“If you use the exact same CTA on every page, you are likely leaving leads on the table. While it is certainly easier to use the same call to action everywhere, it’s not the most prudent way to generate new leads,” said ConversionVoodoo.com.

“As your website visitors move around your site, their desires and their needs often change. If you are presenting your calls to action correctly, you even want their needs to change.”

These are just 3 little things you can likely implement tomorrow on your real estate website. You may just have to move things around a bit to get your contact info on every page, add a lead form or shorten the one you have. You can also easily add new CTAs to each page.

PS: In addition to your website, how are your business cards and postcards? If you need to update your print materials, you can easily get customized real estate business cards and postcards to make sure you’re getting the most for your dollar.