Doug mentioned in a recent post how tight integrations and automation are going to be key for email marketers. We work with Real Estate agents and that's exactly what they are demanding. A couple things you should know about real estate:
- Real Estate agents aren't technologists and don't have an IT department to call up when they need help. They're entrepreneurs, quickly adopt technologies, and always measure the impact. They're often very sophisticated marketers – because their income depends on it.
- Real Estate agents work with margins. Every expense made on a new marketing vendor or technology is money out of their profit margin on a home sold. As a result, they're extremely cautious about the tools they adopt, how simple they are to use, and the impact they make on the sale.
As a result, they've driven us to develop around the clock. We now automatically push a “Listing of the day” to our real estate customer's Facebook wall and Twitter stream. This is one of their own listings and is linked back to a virtual tour that we host for our customer. When we developed the feature, we were unsure of how receptive friends would be to seeing a real estate listing on their wall.
Turns out, very receptive! Many of our agents get comments almost everyday. They are not from the same group of people and sometimes are not the type of comment the buyer might want to hear (like “needing to be cleaned”) but for a real estate agent presence of mind is very important and having an ongoing conversation about their listing keeps them on top.
Our real estate marketing service is now integrated with Twitter, Youtube (we dynamically generate videos from the listing images), and Real Estate Listing Syndication services. The results have been fantastic – our clients have seen about a 25% increase in the number of page views on virtual tours, inbound text and toll free inquiries. This response surprised me somewhat and illustrated very clearly how integrating social media into your marketing efforts (even in a very brick and mortar business) can have a tremendous impact on your brand.
Here's one of the automated Youtube Real Estate videos:
The best part of this is that the customer is able to do all of it – WordPress, Mobile, Twitter, Facebook, Youtube – all with a single click of the mouse. They don't have to login to each application independently each time – they can enable the account integration once and then publish automatically. We've put together a video that demonstrates the functionality.