For the first ever Real Estate Marketing Cocktail Party, we discussed how you can generate more leads for your real estate business using your website.
We chose this topic for our first event because it’s the first thing we recommend to all our clients to start with. Your website is the home base for your entire business and is where all roads lead to. If you’re buying ads, creating content, or sending out physical mailers to potential leads, you always want to put those people into your funnel and keep track of who is visiting your site and what their level of interest is.
When you spend money on getting your name out there but have no way of capturing anyone’s information in an online entity that you own, you’re merely getting trapped back in the loop of spending more to get more instead of building your own platform that works for you forever.
At this meeting, Heather mentioned how all of the younger real estate professionals are generating more leads and performing much better than the older ones because social media and sharing content comes naturally to them since they do it for themselves anyway.
This is obvious if you’ve talked with us Millenials and unfortunately very true if you have no instinct for how to work the web or captivate people online.
The job of most agencies like what we do at Calaboration is to be the Millenial for you and handle your Facebook and LinkedIn Profiles — unfortunately, that usually costs a lot of money and doesn’t show any results for months and sometimes up to a year.
The fact is that so much of the leg-work that goes into building your online presence can be done on your own if you have the time. You don’t have to spend $5,000 per month on someone spinning up a Facebook profile and posting a couple of articles per week. It’s silly to assume that you don’t have the power to be good at social media. That is the purpose of this meetup — to get you 80% of the way to where you can feel comfortable generating online leads and ensure they’re good leads.
The main ingredients of your real estate website we discussed are:
- A visually stunning website
- SEO & Blog
- Lead forms & funnels
Although there are many more things that go into your website, these are the facets that are easily implemented and with very little money.
Visually Stunning Real Estate Website
We’re in the real estate business which means that everything we do can be photographed and shared online. Further, the main product in most cases is YOU if you’re the agent or lender that people are going to be interacting with every day.
Because of all this, it’s crucial that your website features photos of you, your properties, your past deals, or whatever else you may want to showcase. It’s even more important if you’re an agent or lender because your brand is what people are going to be buying into.
Like Heather mentioned above, the younger professionals are performing because they’re so visual. They’re taking selfies, high definition videos, and portraying themselves as the luxury sellers they want to be and people buy into it! This isn’t devious or misleading in any way — it’s merely marketing, and they’re doing it right.
Thinking of your website as a storefront will help you customize it to the liking of the public who will be viewing it. You wouldn’t want your pizza parlor having a difficult-to-read awning nor a door that barely opens just like you wouldn’t want low-quality text or photos along with a slow website that barely loads. Although design firms and professional developers are paid very big bucks to make the most stunning and user-friendly website possible, it is extremely easy to go about it on your own and spin up a perfectly good site in the matter of a few hours on a weekend.
Now, when you do decide to outsource development and marketing, you’ll be able to see the fruits of their efforts much quicker since no one is starting from scratch and you took your business out of the valley already. You may even find that an outside agency doing your marketing is unnecessary if you decide to do it all in-house since the infrastructure is already built — whatever the case may be, your website must be beautiful, mobile-friendly, and valuable to your visitors. When you accomplish that, you accomplish more traffic.
Real Estate Blog & SEO
You could spend $50,000 on the most beautiful and fastest real estate website on the planet — that still will not generate traffic nor bring you in any leads.
The only two ways of generating traffic are from paid reach and organic reach.
- If someone tells their mother about your website at the gym, that’s organic reach. It didn’t cost you anything for them to mention you and it’s exclusively the quality of your website that made them recommend it.
- If someone comes across your website on a billboard, that’s paid reach. You had to drop money to advertise your product or services to an audience that someone else built.
Can you guess which is more effective? Truthfully, they both work wonders — and I’d never suggest one over the other. Both at the same time is amazing — but one before the other will work as well.
Paid traffic will give you quantity, but not quality. You’re pushing your website and services on people while they’re browsing Facebook or searching for something online. They don’t know you and they’re not seeking you out. You’re just appearing in front of them and asking them to click. This works very well which is why we spend so much money on advertising, but it’s also going to guarantee some people who are not really that interested in you and only found you accidentally.
Organic (free) traffic will give you quality, but not quantity (yet!). The best part of organic reach is that you earned it. You’re not throwing money at an ad spot, you earned that spot because your product or service is the best. This means you’re getting shown less, though, since you’re not spamming every area possible — that’s a good thing because you can ensure that your audience and incoming leads are the exact demographic you want. Although this approach will seem fruitless at first, a solid SEO strategy will be more valuable in the long run.
Organic Vs. Paid Traffic for Real Estate
We at Calaboration like to assume that there is no money in the budget for advertising and that we should build an organic following first and advertise later. This is the more sustainable approach but also the fruitless (for the first few months). Writing content online and being hospitable to your visitors one at a time is barely scalable, will take time, and requires a lot from search engines until they begin to trust your website.
Good SEO is the holy grail of organic reach. If your site is showing up on search engine results in the top few spots, you don’t need to buy any traffic because you’re already attracting visitors through organic means.
Depending on the budget, we’ll typically figure out a method that incorporates both strategies. We want to pay for some advertising because that will bring in leads immediately. But, once we stop paying, we lose the stream of leads. To combat this, in the meantime, we must implement some SEO as well so we can build up that momentum for when the advertising budget dries up.
Lead Forms & Funnels
The final thing we went over and the most technical aspect of everything is your lead forms and funnels.
Think about your typical contact us page. It will almost certainly include a lead form, map, address, phone number, etc. That is a standard and generic lead form which includes a field for a name, phone number, email address, subject, and a message. Lead forms are one of the oldest features of the web and have come a long way since we still use them every single day and on nearly 100% of websites.
Although we’re so accustomed to lead forms and see them all the time, filling them out is still a nuisance for many people. Nobody wants to give someone their email address and phone number unless they’re offering us something in return or providing so much value that we’re eager to give them access to contact us again.
Lead Magnets & Building a List
The way to combat this is normally lead magnets that entice people to become a lead for you. This could be anything from a pamphlet you designed to a video series on determining your home’s worth.
Once you have a solid incentive for people to join your list, you’ll find your list of buyers, sellers, investors, patrons, or overall customers grows and grows. Using the list to stay in touch with people and follow up will immensely help your business.
View this post on Instagram
This week's Real Estate Marketing Cocktail Party was a great success! 🍸 Link in bio for the overview and corresponding blog post or visit us at RealEstateCocktailParty.com 😉 We had #realestate professionals who are looking to generate more leads online and some who were trying to improve their current website. The topic of this week's event was generating leads through your business's website — this is achievable with: ✅ Visually Stunning Website ✅ SEO & Blogging ✅ Lead Forms & Funnels See you Monday for our next event!
Further, your list is always there for you no matter what platforms die out or start charging more — this is the one true method of communication that you own 100%.
Funnel Your Prospects to Get Leads
People need their hand held through processes all the time. I don’t trust anyone to take initiative online and seek out forms to fill out nor do I trust them to do research and ensure they’re becoming a lead for the right person.
Your funnel will help them through this entire process. A funnel built into your website is a step by step series of web pages that your visitors will be taken through that goes through upsells, lead captures, videos, and more selling. Although we’re not technically selling and instead capturing leads, the process is the same and only means we can reach more people since we’re not asking anyone to pull out their credit cards.
See You At The Next One
Thank you all for coming out to the Real Estate Marketing Cocktail Party. We’re growing every day and will soon be the ultimate real estate meetup. We always have things to talk about and will always figure out new ways to generate leads online.