The Center for REALTOR® Development (CRD) Podcast Episode 16 is the second in a three-part series on technology that focuses on paid advertising, specifically in social media. Host Monica Neubauer‘s guests are Jamie Slough and Mor Zucker, two broker associates with Kentwood Real Estate Cherry Creek, who have established themselves among the upper echelon of those who specialize in the marketing of luxury properties.
The duo’s comprehensive marketing and technology backgrounds, coupled with their affiliation with the world’s foremost luxury property networks, have enabled the top-producing brokers to secure distinctive listings while others fall short. Slough and Zucker have won multiple awards for their work, including the Best Overall Marketing Package Agent Award (2017) and the booj Award (2016), and are multiple-time award nominees for categories such as “Most Innovative Marketing Technique” and “Outstanding Social Media Savvy.” In addition, Zucker is the founder of The Denver Ear, a media outlet that focuses on local events, restaurants and family activities in Denver. The Denver Ear currently has over 150,000 unique readers per month.
With the rise in technology, clients themselves now have access to all the listings on the MLS, as well as other off-market listings. The role of a REALTOR® has expanded to be the voice of the industry, as well as a transaction manager. The competition is high online, and you can’t necessarily depend on what you’ve been doing in the past to be effective now. You have to at least have a presence online, or it could end up being a huge detriment to your business.
Social media is where the people are, and agents need to get their social media up and running so they can stay in touch with the clients they already have. Slough and Zucker have had a lot of success and positive feedback about their social media presence. One of the big things they focus on is making their posts interesting, and including a lot of lifestyle items in their posts. They also discuss the importance of investing in your social media; you have to pay to play. Before you decide that social media doesn’t work for you, make sure you are investing the same amount of money into social media advertising as you are any print advertising. Slough and Zucker break down what they do and how they approach things. Here are their top 10 tips:
- Don’t be intimidated. Don’t let the fact that you think you can’t do something prevent you from exploring and experimenting with different technology. Many video apps are increasingly user-friendly, and you won’t know what works for you until you give them a try.
- Leverage business pages. If you’re wanting to make social media part of your routine, it may be helpful to use a page manager so you don’t get distracted by the social media apps. You can also create a business page for your Facebook (business.facebook.com). Facebook Ads are a big way to advertise. When you go through the business page manager, you have more control, and it also tracks and provides analytics of your marketing.
- Do A/B testing. Do A/B testing frequently so that you can test what content or ads do and do not work with your audiences. By changing different variables, you can test what combination of efforts and technology will maximize your return.
- Clarify your objectives. Make sure you are intentional about what it is you’re trying to achieve with your ad. For Slough and Zucker, the call-to-action varies based on the goal of the post or the ad campaign—but, in everything they do, the overall goal is to direct people to their website. The post leads people to their website, where they might be prompted for further information. Directing traffic back to the website helps them track statistics and evaluate results. As an agent, your website needs to add value to your clients. Always think about the consumer and why they should come back to your website.
- Cross-promote for maximum exposure. Zucker also has a lifestyle blog, and the crossover here is very intentional. One recommendation she has for this is to write what you know about—your expertise will show through. On the lifestyle blog, the only advertisements they use are exclusively for their real estate business. The blog is linked on their real estate website, as well, so it works as a two-way street. They defer to their clients for ideas and recommendations for the lifestyle blog. This helps to keep previous clients engaged and involved. This idea of the lifestyle blog can be translated to other outlets in the same way—maybe you have a video blog or a podcast. The crossover can be shared with any marketing outlet.
- There is power in the pixel. One new thing Slough and Zucker are trying is Facebook Pixels. The pixel grabs data about the people that visit your website, and holds that data so later you can determine how to retarget (serve up additional ads) to them. Installing a pixel is quite simple—it’s just copying and pasting one line of code.
- Make content that is visually engaging. People are visual creatures. They come to social media to escape the boredom of their everyday lives. Make sure your ad is mostly visual; a photo with a little bit of written content is more effective than one with lots of text. People also like when other people are in your videos and your clients can relate or see themselves actually living in a home or location.
- Authenticity is important. One of the important aspects of how Slough and Zucker use social media is in their intention. They post when it makes sense, and try to be authentic in their posts. Be careful not to mix business and personal too much. They do share some of their business posts on their personal pages, but it’s very strategic. You don’t want to clog your personal newsfeed with your business posts.
- Don’t go chasing waterfalls. In other words: Don’t try to do everything all at once. Pace yourself and play to your strengths. In their social media journey, Slough and Zucker learned that you can’t do everything well, so it’s better to choose one or two avenues that you excel in and push really hard at those, and don’t try to do everything.
- Be prepared to respond promptly. Before you spend any money marketing online, make sure you are ready to respond to your clients and viewers. Systems need to be set up for the appropriate follow-up. You have to be ready to follow up with any inquiries you might get online. It’s important to respond promptly, so it’s a good idea to make this part of your daily schedule.
To hear the entire conversation, be sure to stream the episode from the podcast website, or look it up on whichever podcast marketplace you subscribe to.
For much more about marketing, social media and virtual tools for your real estate business, check out NAR’s e-PRO® Day 1 and 2 online bundle, which is the educational requirement for NAR’s e-PRO® certification. This certification aims to help real estate professionals broaden their technology skills to connect effectively with today’s digitally-savvy consumer.
The Center for REALTOR® Development’s monthly podcast focuses on education in the real estate industry. It addresses formal education programs (such as those from NAR) and informal sources of industry knowledge (such as peers and mentors). Its intended audiences include REALTORS®, real estate professionals, allied professions (such as appraisers and lenders), educators, education providers and consumers. To listen or subscribe, visit www.crdpodcast.com.
For more information, please visit RISMedia’s online learning portal from NAR’s Center for REALTOR® Development (CRD) and the Learning Library. Here, real estate professionals can sign up for online professional development courses, industry designations, certifications, CE credits, Code of Ethics programs and more. NAR’s CRD also offers monthly specials and important education updates. New users will need to register for an account.
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