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Automation Tools for Real Estate

Automation Tools for Real Estate

Some Realtors® feel that automation is the death of personalization. That’s not true at all!

In fact, you can make your leads and customer feel even more attended to by automating a few things, while giving you more time for you to interact directly with the highest probability leads and give them the personal touch.

What Can Realtors® Automate?

If you’re not automating or using a Customer Relationship Tool (CRM), you’re probably doing something like this:

  • A lead emails you or fills out the form on your listing/website
  • You manually check your email (Hopefully, not too long after they reached out)
  • You follow up with them with another email, and try to schedule a time to get together, when you get a chance
  • You manually follow up when you can, and add them to your newsletter/e-blast list to possibly nurture the lead.

Or, your CRM tool can take over those responsibilities for you.

“Enter marketing automation. Most automation platforms allow you to set up workflows that dictate what email messages to send after certain actions are taken on your website,” wrote Inbound marketing expert, Matthew Bushery.

“You can even set up multiple emails following a download: one to thank the user, then three, four, or more emails over the span of months to provide them with your digest, newsletter, and/or promotional emails.”

Imagine CRM as a paid employee who follows up with leads right away, and manages your relationship with customers at every phase.

Should I Automate Social Media?

The jury is actually out on social media. There are those who have data they claim proves that using a third party automated social media tool (like Hootsuite) actually hurts at post’s performance and visibility.

“Using scheduling services such as Hootsuite, Viral Heat, or Sprout Social to schedule your Facebook posts will gain you only one thing: an even lower reach,” wrote social media blogger,  Ash Reed.

“That’s because Facebook recognizes, and penalizes these third-party apps, giving them less credibility than posts made directly on Facebook.  This is true for businesses that push their Twitter feed through Facebook as well.”

Keep in mind, Facebook has openly denied this. So it’s your call on what you want to believe.

What Automation Tools Are Good For Realtors®?

You will find a ton of tools out there, but Infusionsoft is one of my personal favorites. It’s a complete CRM tool that helps you automate your lead management, customer interactions, and marketing, all in one place.

“Those in tune with their audience (or those who would like to be) will love Infusionsoft,” wrote Matthew Toren, Mentor and co-founder of YoungEntrepreneur.com.

“Staying connected becomes second nature after importing and organizing contacts using tags and segmentation. Infusionsoft tracks and records leads’ behavior (like checking your website or archiving your emails), then scores each lead based on ease of conversion.”

In my own business, Infusionsoft improved my revenue 472% and my marketing ROI by 4000%. A good CRM tool like Infusionsoft can help you reclaim your valuable time, by handling the burden of doing everything yourself, while making MORE money than ever!

They can also remind you to follow up with clients and send out postcards, thank you notes, and other materials on time. If you don’t have print marketing ready to go, you should! Let us help get it ready for you.

How to Use Email Marketing in Real Estate

Email Marketing

Email marketing delivers an ROI of 4,300%. You read that correctly. This is surprising to most, but not to those who are doing it correctly.

The numbers prove that for every $1 spent, email marketing generates $38 in return-on-investment. This means Email marketing still remains the heavyweight champion of the ROI.

The good news is this powerful lead generator is predominantly under-used or misused, so you can really stand out immediately by doing things the right way.

Let’s take a look at how Realtors® can leverage this tool and turn emails into sales.

Even Email Marketing Needs a POSTAL Return Address

First, and most importantly, don’t leave yourself open to unnecessary and expensive fines.

This may seem counterintuitive, but always make sure your business snail mail address is somewhere in the body of the email – generally at the bottom. Otherwise, the FTC can slap you with a fine that would completely destroy your marketing budget for a whole year.

“With each separate email in violation of the CAN-SPAM Act subject to penalties of up to $16,000, there’s a lot at stake if you screw up. For that reason, and for the sake of marketing with integrity, it’s wise to educate yourself—and anyone helping you with your email marketing—about the law,” wrote Forbes Contributor, Nellie Akalp.

Avoiding this can be as simple as adding your business office address or a PO Box to your signature or footer.

You’re in Real Estate, So Provide Real Value!

To make the most of your email campaign, you need to do more than simply talk about all the great work you’re doing, and send out a weekly blast of your current listings.

People need to see you as an expert, not just a salesperson. So take an email marketing campaign as a chance to share tips, trends and helpful anecdotes that will entice your recipients to open your emails AND look for more next week.

Of course, you can share your current listings. But don’t lead with them. Lead with value, and add a link to your listings subtly in the body of the text, or in a soft-sell call-to-action at the end.

Tailor Your Message with Drip Email Marketing

You know you can automate the entire email process. But did you know you can actually automate the cultivation of an entire relationship? You can, with what’s called a drip campaign. Simply put, you’re automatically sending subscribers an email that’s specific to an action they’ve taken.

“For instance, those who visit your site and fill out a form could begin to receive a string of drip emails that slowly but surely nurtures them through your inbound sales funnel,” wrote marketing expert, Matthew Bushery.

“The first email could welcome them to your newsletter, while the second and third could provide an overview of your social media profiles and what you offer on your website.” Infusionsoft offers a great platform that allows you to fully customize email campaigns in exactly this way.

Create a Checklist and Use it

Ideally, lots of people are going to see each email you send. So make sure it’s as good as it can be.

You’re going to proofread the copy. Great! You’re going to use more than just one proofreader and have someone else read it too. Even better! But embarrassing mistakes aren’t limited to typos, so experts recommend a “pre-flight checklist” to look at everything. Most Realtors® don’t do this, and most pay for it in lost leads without even realizing it.

“Those marketers are leaving their program open to simple mistakes — like missing links, missing approvals or using the wrong audience segment — increasing the possibility of needing to send an apology email,” wrote Chad White of Marketingland.com.

When you implement these four strategies to getting the most out of your email campaigns, you will instantly put your email marketing ahead of most other Realtors®. You’re going to know how to avoid spam fines, provide information that really engages your audience, be more dynamic with a drip campaign, and create a checklist to follow before you hit send. These are the little things that set you up for success in email marketing.

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.