Promotions and Sweepstakes for your Real Estate Business

Promotions and Sweepstakes for your Real Estate Business

Having managed many interactive programs for Fortune 50 companies, I know first-hand how sweepstakes and promotions have proven to be tremendously successful for organizations in meeting a variety of objectives. In real estate, there are fun and effective ways you can implement these tactics to engage your past clients or generate leads and referrals.

There are several things to consider to ensure your bases are covered when looking to run a sweepstakes or promotion. Read this article for a full list of considerations:


Email Marketing

Email Marketing

If you are considering an email campaign for your real estate business, consider these stats for the most effective email campaign.

Provide value not fluff

Today I had lunch with a couple of agents in my office – they finally convinced me to try the Chinese restaurant downstairs (two hours post-buffet, I’m still feeling just fine!)

We started talking about various marketing tactics – specifically for real estate agents just getting into the business. It was invigorating for me to hear what I know to be true, being said by a team leader, advice he is passing along to his new agents. The future for these agents, should they choose to embrace it, is bright!

In starting out in the real estate business, and for that matter, keeping up consistent business no matter how many years you’ve been in it, you hope that people work with you for several reasons. Not just because they know you, but because you’re great at what you do.

Tidbit #1:

Talk on the phone to 3-5 people a week. The purpose not being to sell them real estate, but to leave the conversation having shared a tidbit of information and having them KNOW you’re in real estate. Good advice, I thought!

Tidbit #2:

Provide value, not fluff. Specifically, when crafting a letter to your sphere. Share relevant information. Starting to build that credibility is so important. You don’t earn referrals just because you’re in real estate. You earn them because those you know trust you with their friends and family in one of the biggest decisions of their life – because you’ve proven you know what you’re doing. Because of this – don’t ever forget the value of a referral. You didn’t earn it just because someone knows you!

Communicating who you are to attract your desired clientele

The agents at my company, benefit from associating themselves with the #1 real estate company in the world – RE/MAX. They’ve consciously chosen to be part of the company for one reason or another. Whether it be the brand, the training, the broker him/herself or the commission splits.

What I do try to continue to impress upon our agents, is that you must define who you are beyond your brand. The fact is, you’re working in the same communities as many other real estate agents. No matter what company you hold your license with, your personal brand should be defined and communicated.

The fact is, there IS enough room for all of us, in any community. And you shouldn’t dislike someone because they have chosen the same field of work as you. I had a wonderful chat over lunch with a friend about just that — the truth is, not everyone will get along with you, like your personality or work style, or benefit from your strengths.

Instead, as an established agent, it’s more important to define who you are and work with the people that will benefit most from your services the most.

How do you go about doing that?

1. Define your business

As a real estate agent, you’re in the business of selling homes. Take that a step further…what kind of homes (new construction, short sales and foreclosures, luxury)

2. Define your strengths and weaknesses

Are you detail-oriented? Do you know real estate law like the back of your hand? Are you great with staging and getting homes ready to sell? Are you a home marketing guru?

3. Determine what you like about your career? And what you don’t like.

Don’t promote yourself as doing the least favorite part of your career. Do you despise working with first-time home buyers because they take too long to make a decision? Do you like working with luxury homes and have a knack for speaking their language?

4. How would past clients describe you?

Are you quick on your feet, witty, smart, devoted? Use those words in your brand statement to set you apart.

Using these tips, get started on defining your brand.

An example of a great brand statement might be:

Sonya Fox: A detailed and professional real estate agent with over 10 years in the industry, providing seamless transactions and a memorable experience  for luxury buyers in the southeast metro.

Once you’ve got a brand statement, you can create a shorter tagline and even a logo to further communicate your business to your clientele. Happy selling!

You can’t afford not to

If you’re not doing any other marketing, I can’t say it enough…please keep in touch with your past clients! I’ve been doing a lot of research lately and have come across story after story where real estate agents missed out on a transaction because they were not keeping in touch with their past clients. As you know, a transaction can mean $5,000 or more in commissions for you. Can you really afford not to?

I came across a quote this week that really hit home. “It’s not your client’s job to remember you, it’s your job to make sure they don’t forget you.” We’ve all had it happen, you’re talking to a friend or even just an acquaintance and they tell you they just bought a new home! Ugh…they didn’t work with you. A twinge of anger starts to build up, understandably so, but I challenge you to think about why they didn’t use you. Ask yourself two questions:

  • Have you stayed in touch with them regularly on a personal and professional level (2x/month is recommended)
  • Do they know that you’re the best in the business?

In keeping in touch with past clients, I recommend to our agents that they market to the following groups:

  • Past Clients
  • Sphere of Influence
  • Geo-Target/neighbors
  • Niche audience

It’s more expensive to acquire new business, at least double the cost, and we all know that the majority of our business is by referral anyways, so start there. You’ve already won their business – they know how great you are. Keep in touch with them twice a monthly with a media mix (online and offline, for example). The variety of touches ensure they’ll receive at least one each month.

Secondly, show that you’re the expert, not that you know that Halloween is coming up. I say that because we are constantly being thrown ideas of how to market and stay in touch with our spheres, but to gain a referral, they must trust you and know that you can help their friends and family through anything – their name is on the line with this referral.

September is a great time to sit down and plan out your marketing for the year. Implement something that is sent without having to give it much thought and something that’s personal and shows your credibility. This is your chance to prove why you deserve their referrals.

I welcome comments on what works for you!


Content Marketing – What’s the Big Idea?

I wanted to be sure to share an article and awesome infographic regarding content marketing I came across yesterday. Those of you that follow my blog or my marketing recommendations, know that I LOVE a good infographic. Why? I love numbers and data, and giving us marketers a purpose for what we do. After all, if we can’t prove that it’s working, it’s hard to justify putting time and costs against it. And looking at those numbers in an engaging and easy to understand format…BONUS!

This infographic regarding content marketing particularly caught my eye because it’s the latest buzz around marketing – what was “gamification” or “engagement” a year ago, seems to have switched to content marketing in recent months. Whatever the buzzword is, the intent is the same. Driving more awareness for our brand to ultimately drive sales and create brand activists, 

As content marketing (yep, there’s even an institute for it) gets pushed the to the forefront of our minds, we’ve been encouraged to develop our position, distinguish our originality and shout what we’re about from the rooftops! That’s a lot of work. To be considered an expert in your field, and someone whom others want to do business, you must be doing this and doing so in a way that engages and informs your target market. Check out the stats and thank you to Veronica at MarketingProfs for sharing this with us initially!

Content Marketing Infographic


Real Estate Marketing Online

Real Estate Marketing Online

Taking information from each of the top real estate websites regarding their unique visits, along with information from “Real Estate Tech Trends” by Properties Online, Inc. I compiled this infographic.

I would have loved to included greater information about each of the top real estate sites and what differentiates their audiences, but there are not yet, enough distinguishable demographics in audience type. Stay tuned as further research about each site is released!

Partnerships in Real Estate?

As Realtors, each is essentially their own small business…that’s a lot of small businesses all working towards the same things, referrals, generating new business, developing and brand and positive reputation – being the “go-to” expert. When you think of other small businesses, they have the same goals, and in most cases, a loyal following/customer base. 

Think of a place like Cupcakewith two locations in the Twin Cites. The newest one opened at the Mall of America. As a small, non-chain restaurant, they have a loyal following as well as enough brand awareness to continue to drive new traffic into their shops. Exactly what each of us hopes for our real estate business.

My advice is to determine your niche and find like businesses that are non-competing and share your customer bases. Is your niche first-time home buyers or are they luxury home buyers? That clientele will frequent different places. Make a list of those locations and think about ways to partner with them to grow your own base.

Reasons to PartnerImage

1. Build Credibility

Associating yourself with other brands that have a strong reputation, builds your brand. Think Crest plus Scope.

2. Gain Reach

Think of all of those consumers that frequent Cupcake. They could be potential new clients of yours. And they already love Cupcake. They’ll think…If you do too, you’re bound to get along great.

3. It’s a Win-Win

What does a place like Cupcake get out of letting you promote within their store? Let me count the ways! You’ll promote a unique offer to your entire database, encouraging your clients to go to Cupcake. You’ll post on social media, those same unique offers. You’ll encourage people to attend their events, you’ll help them announce sales and new products, the list goes on. Just make sure the win-win you’re proposing makes sense for their business and yours.

Closing remarks:

Keep in mind partnerships are more than just posting your business card on their bulletin board. It’s showing a unique preference and relationship between your brands. Perhaps you’re having an open house – at the open house, you’re giving away a gift certificate to your selected partner, in exchange of them promoting your open house.

ACTIVATION of that partnership is key.