As far as marketing vehicles go, email kicks ass. Despite the many cries of social media pushers these last several years, email is not dead and not dying. In fact, it works better than ever.
In real estate, for the most part, we’re stuck in pie recipes, pleas for referrals, and poorly formatted market stats that make no sense. Or we just get auto feeds of listings.
The long incubation period in real estate means automated email campaigns of all kinds are common.
Maybe yes, maybe no. With the right messages and copy, automated emails can feel personal and offer real value at the right moment.
Automated, not canned
Automated emails in real estate at the brokerage level tend to be solely about new listings or recent sales. But what if brokers layered in a more nuanced series of communications?
A person has come to your front door – your website – and voluntarily created an account on your site or signed up to receive more information. Let’s show them your value stretches beyond listings. Your agents sell homes. They know the market. They know the neighborhoods. They know the human emotions of these transactions – the fear, the joy, the anxiety.
When you think about natural triggers, there are tons of easy opportunities for non-intrusive emails. Here are 4 every brokerage in America could start sending today.
1. Initial sign-up
We’ve all received these before. Usually they are some sort of throwaway, “Thanks for signing up” message. But this is a grand opportunity to set a tone, introduce your brand’s voice and make an impression. Ideally, you would include something of value – maybe a few tips on using your website, or a couple of insights about the neighborhood they’re looking in.
Most importantly, this email needs to sound like it was written by a person to another person. I.e., do not send out the default copy that came with your vendor’s system. Instead, take the time to have someone write the copy for these messages.
Remember: you’re setting a tone and creating the impression that you’re a good company with smart people who do their jobs well. You want to sound personal and show unique value.
2. Two weeks after sign-up
OK, so now your consumer has been introduced to your brand, is searching on your site and getting listings emails. After about 2 weeks, it’s a good time to simply check in and see how they’re doing and whether they’re already working with an agent or need a recommendation for one.
Keep it short and simple. Focus on offering help without being too spammy.
3. Hasn’t logged in for over a month
The tricky dance of email is finding the right balance between checking in often enough and being irritating to your recipient. A common trigger used by software and app companies happens when the consumer hasn’t logged in for a specified period of time.
This is another great opportunity to remind your subscribers that there are people on the other end of your website. The message can be as simple as, “Hey, we’ve noticed that you haven’t logged in to look at properties in the last month. Is there anything we can help you with as you move through your real estate search?”
You could again offer to recommend an agent if they’re ready. You could offer information on financing and loan pre-qualification. Keep it simple, yet helpful.
4. Consumer performs same search X days in a row
This is an obvious trigger indicating you’ve got a serious buyer on hand. Now is the time to check in and make sure they have an agent/offer to connect to one, and let them know your agents are available to show properties if they’re ready.
More than listings
I know brokers send email. But it feels like listings have become the fallback for communication with site visitors.
My point here is that with the new systems available today to help mine the data and set up automated campaigns, why not experiment with messages that go beyond listings?
You are more than a source of listings. Now go and put that value in front of the people who are knocking on your website door.