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In Part of 1 of our Building Your Business Plan series, we outlined the initial steps an agent can take in 2021 to prepare for a successful year. This included reviewing how an agent can get and stay organized and why an agent should focus on their sphere of influence to build their business. We also pointed out how Cloze can make this process simpler, allowing you to spend more time on quality tasks, such as prospecting and building relationships.
For the next phase of your business plan – and what we believe is most relevant to focus on this month – we want to review the various steps you can take to develop an effective marketing strategy. Let’s take a look!
Tips to Developing and Implementing an Effective Marketing Strategy
For today’s clients, marketing is key. You want to show your clients you are active in the market while maintaining a personal connection with them. To help accomplish this goal, you should consider developing and implementing a multi-channel marketing program.
The channel you choose can vary depending on your velocity, access to marketing teams, business model, and more. However, all agents should consider using a few key channels in today’s world:
- Phone outreach
- Email campaigns
- Social media campaigns
- Texting campaigns
Each offers a unique perspective on how to connect with clients and how to promote your business.
To keep yourself “top of mind,” you should use a set of automated, routine, and more generic activities to target your entire sphere of influence (leads, prospects, past clients, and core sphere). At the same time, you should use personalized, one-to-one outreach for your core sphere of influence. With this approach, your core sphere receives both standardized content and your personalized outreach.
|Email newsletters||1:1 email|
|New listings / Just sold||Handwritten notes|
|Giveaway and discount postcards||Text messages|
|Philanthropic postcards||Phone calls|
|Social media||Zoom meetings|
|Local market reports||In-person|
|National market reports||Pop-bys|
To implement a high-quality, multi-channel marketing program, you need to plan and reflect on your business model. Incorporating all four channels – phone, email, social media, and texting – can help you reach the largest audience and effectively use your time.
Let’s look at how you can use each one to optimize your program.
Calling clients is the most traditional sales and marketing method and can provide the quickest avenue to building a personal connection with your clients. However, just like any other business strategy, cold calling is an art!
When making calls, you should always use an enticing opener to catch your audience’s attention. Research shows that you have less than 5 seconds before prospective clients decide if they want to continue the conversation. Therefore, it is crucial to know what you will say and how you will bring value when you get someone on the line. To help prepare, consider drafting a script for your calls.
Your script should be unique to your market and services and be based on your knowledge and experience. There are dozens of resources that can help you write a compelling script, which can help you build confidence. Consider conducting your own research to learn more about how you can sell yourself in your market. To bring the most value, the call should always be about your client, not you. Once on the phone, avoid pushing for referrals. If clients are engaged, focus on active listening and take notes.
Tip: Add your call scripts to Cloze as templates so you can stay on track and take notes as you talk.
To help get your creative juices flowing, here are sample Ninja Selling scripts that you can use while you continue your research. Below are a couple Ninja Selling Call Script examples:
Sample Call Script 1
Hi there, XXX. I was thinking about you all day today and just thought I’d call on the off chance I’d catch you. Hope all is well. [Throw in something personal you know about them, their kids, the things they like to do, etc.] I always love hearing from you, but please don’t feel you have to call back. Talk to you soon.
Sample Call Script 2
Hi there, XXX. I (1) was at a Giants game and thought of you, (2) saw the Westminster Dog Show and thought of [dog’s name] (you get the point). (The more personal stuff you know about the client, the more you can communicate on a personal level.) Just wanted you to know that you crossed my mind. Hope all is well. We’ll talk soon.
It’s essential to know your script but also to be able to go off-script. Avoid reading your script word-for-word, and instead, think of your script as organized thoughts (not something you stiffly recite). It should be fluid and natural like you are having a conversation with your best friend.
For email campaigns, identify the ideas you want to focus on in 2021 and how you will convey that information. Different types of emails provide different types of value.
When it comes to email, we recommend breaking it down into two primary types:
- Standardized messages
- Personalized messages
Standardized messages are the staple of every real estate agency. They are large scale communications that you send to your sphere of influence and beyond. They include newsletters, market updates, listings, and other bulk communications.
Samples of standardized messages include:
- Holiday emails: Remember to stay personable and recognize important days of the year (Cloze makes this easy!).
- Market updates: Discuss recent transactions or market data that may impact a client’s home value.
- Your activity: Send listings, market updates, and closed transactions.
You can use email marketing software such as MailChimp, Rezora, ActivePipe, or others for this type of mass communication.
Beyond the continuous, automated communications, you should also have a steady flow of personalized, one-to-one communications. Automated mass emails are necessary for brand awareness, but they do not help to build relationships.
As we discussed in Part 1 of this series, the bulk of your time should focus on your sphere of influence. You need a steady flow of one-to-one communication via email, phone, Zoom, text, or in-person.
For this, Cloze can help. Here are some marketing campaigns to consider this year and tips on how Cloze can simplify the process:
Drip marketing campaigns:
Use this strategy to keep your clients engaged and informed.
Drip campaigns can come in many forms and include a mix of outbound activity beyond email communication. In a traditional email-based drip campaign, a series of pre-written emails are sent over a period of time. They can be sent automatically, or you can set reminders to alert you when to take action by sending each message manually. It is vital to keep your content concise and provide value.
Tip: Cloze offers a feature called Next Steps that lets you create and send drip campaigns.
Each campaign may include a mix of email templates, text templates, and phone scripts. As each reminder in the campaign comes due, you will see it on the Cloze Agenda, which prompts you to personalize and send the associated template.
Come up with your own creative messages that distinguish you from the competition. This can include timely information or share something you are passionate about.
Tip: Use Tags in Cloze to organize your contacts by common traits. For example, you could identify all of your clients who have dogs.
Then, if you read something interesting related to dogs (like a new dog park opening), you can easily find and send a Mail Merge message to them.
Send clients updates on legislation and news that may impact their position.
Tip: Cloze makes it easy to assemble a newsletter from articles in just a few minutes. It is as easy as pasting a few links. From there, Cloze automatically completes the formatting.
Simply start with a base template, paste your links, and include a personal note. Add this to your schedule to ensure your clients get relevant newsletters.
- Review throughout the week, making note of interesting articles.
- Send when you are ready – simply paste them into Cloze, and it automatically creates a newsletter for you, including pictures.
- Add a personal note and send your email any time.
In the following example, a personal newsletter template has been selected and several articles added.
Note: The Marketing Email feature is included as part of the Cloze Business Platinum Plan.
Social Media Campaigns:
Creating effective social media campaigns takes some planning. Start by identifying which networks to use and the pros and cons of using each one. In addition, identify how often you will post, what you will post, and how you will interact with your clients. FYI: 74% of sellers use social media to find their real estate agent, so don’t overlook this type of campaign.
Tip: With Cloze, you can post to Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Simply type your post or paste a link to an article to share immediately or schedule it for the future.
- Facebook: Most popular among baby boomers, Facebook offers an excellent starting place to build your brand. If you are not set up with a Facebook account yet, you can create a business page to promote your services. Facebook marketing is useful for target marketing, which can help you target a specific niche of clients.
Tip: You can also use services such as Homespotter Boost to automate your listing campaigns.
- Twitter: To reach a wider audience and promote yourself as a market expert, use Twitter. It’s free and allows you to deliver content to your audience in a clear, concise manner. However, this network also limits how much you can post (it has a character limit) and can be wasteful due to each post’s time sensitivity.
- LinkedIn: The most professional service, LinkedIn, lets you focus on B2B communication and networking. All users are linked via their professions, which provides a safe space to build one’s business and brand. However, free accounts have limited use. Advertising can be more costly, but the ability to target specific audiences is worth it. For real estate agents, this social network may be better for building a professional network than meeting new clients.
- Instagram: Sharing your transactions and personality is best saved for Instagram. As the second-largest network globally, it allows agents to keep their clients updated on multiple levels – via posts, stories, and IGTV. Therefore, it is an excellent resource for sharing open houses, posting about local events, and connecting with individuals.
Less popular but gaining traction are text campaigns, which promote a higher probability of interaction with clients. Text campaigns tend to have higher “open” rates than email campaigns, which improves client response rates. When you send a text campaign, keep it short and leave out the sales pitch.
Sample Text Template 1
Hi! I hope you are doing well. I wanted to connect since it’s a new year! Let me know a good time to set up a call this week.
Sample Text Template 2
Hi! It’s been some time since we discussed your plans. Are you free to jump on a call this week?
The samples provided are not aggressive and give clients the option of scheduling a call if they choose. You don’t want to get too pushy. The goal is to elicit a response, not have them ignore you.
Tip: In Cloze, you can create text templates to make outreach fast and easy. Each text template can be tied to a Cloze Next Step.
When the reminder is due, you can simply swipe to send the text template using your real phone number.
Grow Your Business
For each campaign, use an application that can help you track your connections and progress. For example, for email campaigns, use a program that analyzes how many emails were opened and how many clients responded (these options are included in Cloze).
For social media campaigns, you want to track data such as views and likes. And for texts, you should monitor which numbers are accurate and how many clients respond. Continuously fine-tuning these campaigns is another sure-fire way to improve your efficiency.
In the end, by utilizing automated systems, such as those featured in Cloze, combined with personalized phone calls and campaigns, you can optimize your marketing strategy and build effective relationships to grow your business. As you continue to work on this process and implement new ideas, you will begin to reap financial benefits.
Stay tuned to learn about building your business through networking and how to analyze your Q1 goals to determine what actions to focus on in Q2!
Have you tried Cloze?
Cloze is a smart CRM (customer relationship management) platform with a built-in AI personal assistant that gets rid of data entry and helps you close more business with your leads and your sphere of influence.