Mar 17th, 2014

15-Minute Morning Marketing for Real Estate Agents

To sell homes, real estate agents like you know that you need to prospect far and wide: out of hundreds of leads, only a percentage becomes true prospects, and of this, a very tiny percentage actually closes a deal. Marketing will help you accomplish your sales goals -- even if you do it for only 15 minutes every day.

You might be skeptical: Why only 15 minutes? What marketing can I accomplish with 15 minutes?

3 reasons for limiting your marketing to 15 minutes daily

  1. It makes your marketing tasks manageable.
    Marketing, although it’s more affordable and can be done in many ways these days, takes a lot of work. Even a single strategy -- Facebook marketing, for example -- can be very involved and time-consuming. You need to set up a page, gain followers, post regularly, respond to comments, etc.

    Doing all these on top of your regular realtor tasks can be very overwhelming; doing them all at once can tire you out and leave you with no energy for your main tasks (do you really want to face your clients looking exhausted?).
     
  2. It helps you focus.
    If you’re doing social media marketing, it’s so easy to get off-track. Before you know it, you’re watching cat videos and clicking on every post that catches your fancy.

    There’s nothing like limited time to get you focused. When you know that you only have 15 minutes to accomplish your task, you’re likely to screen out distractions.
     
  3. It helps you prioritize.
    You don’t need to sacrifice the time you need to spend talking to your clients on the phone or face to face. These are essential to closing a sale. Your job, after all, is to sell, not to learn how to code or design mobile-friendly websites or gain social media followers even if these are helpful.

Preparation

  1. Get to know your target buyers
    To make your marketing activities effective, you need to understand the people you want to market to. What’s their demographic information? What sites do they visit to look for homes to buy? What are their concerns?

    You can subscribe to real estate research reports for your locale (e.g., from Realtor.org, Zillow, Realtytimes), visit forums and networks like Reddit and local community groups on Facebook, or find out what home buyers search for online.
     
  2. Choose your online marketing strategy wisely
    Once you’ve familiarized yourself with your target prospects, then it’s time to reach out to them. You don’t have to use every online marketing strategy in the book -- since 15 minutes is all you’ve got every morning, select only those channels where your target buyers mostly are, based on your previous research.

    For example:
    • Are they mostly baby boomers who prefer to read blogs and send email inquiries? (Focus on your blog and email list.)
    • Or are they Millennials who like to hang out on social media and engage freely? (Definitely social media.)
    • Do they like to watch videos of home interiors before requesting a site visit? (Youtube.)
       
  3. Get organized
    The most successful agents plan their work day and jot down their tasks at least the night before. En route to the office, they review their tasks and psych themselves up to accomplish as much as they can for that day and be another step closer to selling.

    Aside from listing down usual tasks such as calling your prospects or touring an interested buyer on-site, create a separate marketing checklist (such as the one below).

    Take advantage of free or affordable desktop, online, and mobile tools like Google Apps or Zoho CRM. There are also many software tailored-made for realtors that you can search on the Internet.
     
  4. Schedule your marketing before you check your work email
    If you’re like most agents (or most workers, for that matter), you check your emails first as soon as you start your work day. This makes sense. Aside from checking for client emails or new leads, it’s good practice to check for any updates on home listings and market activity. You’ll serve your clients better if you’re well-informed of the latest homes for sale or best prices in the market.

    But if you want to work smarter, you’d postpone checking your inbox until after you’ve ticked off your 15-minute marketing checklist. Just like social media, emails can be a huge distraction. It’s all too easy to become reactive to email, to feel obligated to read and reply immediately to every email that comes in your inbox.

    Of course, you might discover that your email newsletter is your best source of leads. However, to avoid confusion and a cluttered inbox, keep your email newsletter list separate from your work contacts, even when you’re just starting out.

    Use a professional email marketing service like MailChimp, Constant Contact, or Aweber. You can also automatically send your blog posts to your subscribers via Feedburner.
     
  5. Acquaint yourself with tools that make you more efficient
    Marketing online can be very tedious if done manually, but thankfully there are dozens of inexpensive tools that simplify the task of following and engaging with users, posting updates, and tracking valuable data to help you refine your marketing activities.

    Some of these tools are:

    Social Media Management
    Bufferapp
    Hootsuite
    Tweetdeck

    Productivity Enhancers
    Google Alerts - When someone posts a "looking for a house in [location]" ad or "selling my house in  [location]" ad somewhere, like on Craigslist or some forum, you get an alert in your inbox or in Feedly.

    Feedly - Get all relevant content in just one place so you don’t have to spend too much time looking for top posts to share and for getting ideas for your own blog content. For instance, you can search for content on “real estate” Feedly will give you a list of sites that you can choose to get updates from. You can also get your Google Alerts feed here instead of in your inbox.

    IFTTT - Automates repetitive tasks. You can choose from a wide range of “recipes” or integrations among popular online services or create your own. For example, you can set it to send you an email or an SMS when someone sends you a message or comment on Facebook, or if someone has made an inquiry through your sales page or blog about a listing. You can also have IFTTT send these new leads automatically to Google Spreadsheets or your client database.
     
  6. Set aside time to create accounts and buffer content.
    Before you dive into your daily 15-minute marketing, devote a few days to set up your blog/website and newsletter and to sign up for your social media accounts. Have a headstart with content by writing a month’s worth of evergreen blog posts, shooting photos and videos of the homes you are selling and the neighborhood, commissioning infographics (if you don’t know how to do it yourself), etc.

    Ideally, you should be planning your content for the entire year, taking into account holidays and housing market seasonalities. Here are two ways to create a simple editorial calendar: using Google Calendar or directly in WordPress using this plugin.

Checklists and Schedule for Lead Generation and Sales

Here’s a sample schedule:

Daily:

5 minutes – Check Feedly for anything relevant that your readers might find interesting; schedule at least 3 links for automatic posting on your Facebook Page, LinkedIn, Twitter later on using Buffer or Hootsuite; search online for great infographics, charts, and other resources that you could write about or pin to Pinterest

5 minutes - Find and reach out to at least 3 new contacts on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.; join a community or group;

5 minutes - Engage at least 3 existing contacts or followers - respond to comments or messages

OR

Weekly:

Monday – Write and publish a quick post on blog (or commission it)

Tuesday – Reply to comments on your social media accounts

Wednesday – Join groups and forums, answer questions helpfully

Thursday – Upload hi-res photos and videos of homes and neighborhood on Pinterest and Youtube

Friday – Check your blog analytics, find out which content got lots of attention; brainstorm next week’s topics and posts


You could also organize your tasks using a spreadsheet or calendar, for example:

For February 3 to 7 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Leads Source

Tasks

Mon

Tues

Wed

Thurs

Fri

Blog

Draft (or commission) a 300-500 word post based on a list of topics you already defined or your editorial calendar

10
minutes

10
minutes

 

 

 

 

Reply to comments

 

 

 

5
minutes

 

 

Check blog stats, see which posts and topics are most shared or most read, where most readers are coming from

 

 

 

 

5
minutes

Social Media (general)

Check Feedly for shareable content from other sources; Schedule interesting relevant content using Buffer or Hootsuite for posting on your social media accounts

5
minutes

 

 

5
minutes 

 

 *Facebook page

Comment on relevant article others have shared

 

5
minutes

5
minutes

 

 

 

Join 5 realtor groups

 

 

x

 

 

 

Participate and be helpful in group discussion

 

 

5
minutes

 

 

 *Twitter

Reply to/engage 3 followers

 

 

 

5
minutes

 

 

Follow 3 new users

 

 

 

x

 

 *LinkedIn

Connect with 3 realtor professionals

 

 

 

 

 

 

Join 5 realtor groups

 

 

 x

 

 

 

Participate and be helpful in group discussion

 

 

5
minutes 

 

 

 

Comment on an article shared on LinkedIn

 

 

 x

 

 

*Pinterest board

Post 10 hi-res photos of homes for sale

 

 

 

 

5
minutes

 

Post 10 hi-res photos of the neighborhood

 

 

 

 

x

 

Follow 3 new users

 

 

 

 

 

*Youtube

Upload a high-res video of homes for sale in your area

 

 

 

 

x

Feel free to experiment on the routine that works best for you. Here are other great examples of marketing checklists and routines to inspire you when you create yours:

For more information on how to use social media for specific social networks, you can check these out:

LinkedIn - How to Use LinkedIn to Boost Your Real Estate Business

Facebook - 6 Types of Facebook Posts That'll Help You Generate Leads

Pinterest - Field Guide to Pinterest for REALTORS®

Twitter - Real Estate Agents: Tons of Tips for Tweeting and Twittering

Google+ - Google Plus Will Change Real Estate Marketing With Circles

Make Marketing a Habit

While it might be tempting to do all of these in one go, it’s better to spread out your marketing tasks throughout the week.

Fifteen minutes daily sounds easier to commit to than, say, the entire morning trying to tick off everything on your list. Fifteen minutes is just what it takes to walk to the coffee shop down the street and order coffee and get back.

More importantly, doing this regularly also ensures that you get a steady inflow of leads and you can focus on closing deals. Fifteen minutes of marketing daily, that’s all. And it gets easier as time goes by.

To sell homes, real estate agents like you know that you need to prospect far and wide: out of hundreds of leads, only a percentage becomes true prospects, and of this, a very tiny percentage actually closes a deal. Marketing will help you accomplish your sales goals -- even if you do it for only 15 minutes every day.

You might be skeptical: Why only 15 minutes? What marketing can I accomplish with 15 minutes?

3 reasons for limiting your marketing to 15 minutes daily

  1. It makes your marketing tasks manageable.
    Marketing, although it’s more affordable and can be done in many ways these days, takes a lot of work. Even a single strategy -- Facebook marketing, for example -- can be very involved and time-consuming. You need to set up a page, gain followers, post regularly, respond to comments, etc.

    Doing all these on top of your regular realtor tasks can be very overwhelming; doing them all at once can tire you out and leave you with no energy for your main tasks (do you really want to face your clients looking exhausted?).
     
  2. It helps you focus.
    If you’re doing social media marketing, it’s so easy to get off-track. Before you know it, you’re watching cat videos and clicking on every post that catches your fancy.

    There’s nothing like limited time to get you focused. When you know that you only have 15 minutes to accomplish your task, you’re likely to screen out distractions.
     
  3. It helps you prioritize.
    You don’t need to sacrifice the time you need to spend talking to your clients on the phone or face to face. These are essential to closing a sale. Your job, after all, is to sell, not to learn how to code or design mobile-friendly websites or gain social media followers even if these are helpful.

Preparation

  1. Get to know your target buyers
    To make your marketing activities effective, you need to understand the people you want to market to. What’s their demographic information? What sites do they visit to look for homes to buy? What are their concerns?

    You can subscribe to real estate research reports for your locale (e.g., from Realtor.org, Zillow, Realtytimes), visit forums and networks like Reddit and local community groups on Facebook, or find out what home buyers search for online.
     
  2. Choose your online marketing strategy wisely
    Once you’ve familiarized yourself with your target prospects, then it’s time to reach out to them. You don’t have to use every online marketing strategy in the book -- since 15 minutes is all you’ve got every morning, select only those channels where your target buyers mostly are, based on your previous research.

    For example:
    • Are they mostly baby boomers who prefer to read blogs and send email inquiries? (Focus on your blog and email list.)
    • Or are they Millennials who like to hang out on social media and engage freely? (Definitely social media.)
    • Do they like to watch videos of home interiors before requesting a site visit? (Youtube.)
       
  3. Get organized
    The most successful agents plan their work day and jot down their tasks at least the night before. En route to the office, they review their tasks and psych themselves up to accomplish as much as they can for that day and be another step closer to selling.

    Aside from listing down usual tasks such as calling your prospects or touring an interested buyer on-site, create a separate marketing checklist (such as the one below).

    Take advantage of free or affordable desktop, online, and mobile tools like Google Apps or Zoho CRM. There are also many software tailored-made for realtors that you can search on the Internet.
     
  4. Schedule your marketing before you check your work email
    If you’re like most agents (or most workers, for that matter), you check your emails first as soon as you start your work day. This makes sense. Aside from checking for client emails or new leads, it’s good practice to check for any updates on home listings and market activity. You’ll serve your clients better if you’re well-informed of the latest homes for sale or best prices in the market.

    But if you want to work smarter, you’d postpone checking your inbox until after you’ve ticked off your 15-minute marketing checklist. Just like social media, emails can be a huge distraction. It’s all too easy to become reactive to email, to feel obligated to read and reply immediately to every email that comes in your inbox.

    Of course, you might discover that your email newsletter is your best source of leads. However, to avoid confusion and a cluttered inbox, keep your email newsletter list separate from your work contacts, even when you’re just starting out.

    Use a professional email marketing service like MailChimp, Constant Contact, or Aweber. You can also automatically send your blog posts to your subscribers via Feedburner.
     
  5. Acquaint yourself with tools that make you more efficient
    Marketing online can be very tedious if done manually, but thankfully there are dozens of inexpensive tools that simplify the task of following and engaging with users, posting updates, and tracking valuable data to help you refine your marketing activities.

    Some of these tools are:

    Social Media Management
    Bufferapp
    Hootsuite
    Tweetdeck

    Productivity Enhancers
    Google Alerts - When someone posts a "looking for a house in [location]" ad or "selling my house in  [location]" ad somewhere, like on Craigslist or some forum, you get an alert in your inbox or in Feedly.

    Feedly - Get all relevant content in just one place so you don’t have to spend too much time looking for top posts to share and for getting ideas for your own blog content. For instance, you can search for content on “real estate” Feedly will give you a list of sites that you can choose to get updates from. You can also get your Google Alerts feed here instead of in your inbox.

    IFTTT - Automates repetitive tasks. You can choose from a wide range of “recipes” or integrations among popular online services or create your own. For example, you can set it to send you an email or an SMS when someone sends you a message or comment on Facebook, or if someone has made an inquiry through your sales page or blog about a listing. You can also have IFTTT send these new leads automatically to Google Spreadsheets or your client database.
     
  6. Set aside time to create accounts and buffer content.
    Before you dive into your daily 15-minute marketing, devote a few days to set up your blog/website and newsletter and to sign up for your social media accounts. Have a headstart with content by writing a month’s worth of evergreen blog posts, shooting photos and videos of the homes you are selling and the neighborhood, commissioning infographics (if you don’t know how to do it yourself), etc.

    Ideally, you should be planning your content for the entire year, taking into account holidays and housing market seasonalities. Here are two ways to create a simple editorial calendar: using Google Calendar or directly in WordPress using this plugin.

Checklists and Schedule for Lead Generation and Sales

Here’s a sample schedule:

Daily:

5 minutes – Check Feedly for anything relevant that your readers might find interesting; schedule at least 3 links for automatic posting on your Facebook Page, LinkedIn, Twitter later on using Buffer or Hootsuite; search online for great infographics, charts, and other resources that you could write about or pin to Pinterest

5 minutes - Find and reach out to at least 3 new contacts on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.; join a community or group;

5 minutes - Engage at least 3 existing contacts or followers - respond to comments or messages

OR

Weekly:

Monday – Write and publish a quick post on blog (or commission it)

Tuesday – Reply to comments on your social media accounts

Wednesday – Join groups and forums, answer questions helpfully

Thursday – Upload hi-res photos and videos of homes and neighborhood on Pinterest and Youtube

Friday – Check your blog analytics, find out which content got lots of attention; brainstorm next week’s topics and posts


You could also organize your tasks using a spreadsheet or calendar, for example:

For February 3 to 7 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Leads Source

Tasks

Mon

Tues

Wed

Thurs

Fri

Blog

Draft (or commission) a 300-500 word post based on a list of topics you already defined or your editorial calendar

10
minutes

10
minutes

 

 

 

 

Reply to comments

 

 

 

5
minutes

 

 

Check blog stats, see which posts and topics are most shared or most read, where most readers are coming from

 

 

 

 

5
minutes

Social Media (general)

Check Feedly for shareable content from other sources; Schedule interesting relevant content using Buffer or Hootsuite for posting on your social media accounts

5
minutes

 

 

5
minutes 

 

 *Facebook page

Comment on relevant article others have shared

 

5
minutes

5
minutes

 

 

 

Join 5 realtor groups

 

 

x

 

 

 

Participate and be helpful in group discussion

 

 

5
minutes

 

 

 *Twitter

Reply to/engage 3 followers

 

 

 

5
minutes

 

 

Follow 3 new users

 

 

 

x

 

 *LinkedIn

Connect with 3 realtor professionals

 

 

 

 

 

 

Join 5 realtor groups

 

 

 x

 

 

 

Participate and be helpful in group discussion

 

 

5
minutes 

 

 

 

Comment on an article shared on LinkedIn

 

 

 x

 

 

*Pinterest board

Post 10 hi-res photos of homes for sale

 

 

 

 

5
minutes

 

Post 10 hi-res photos of the neighborhood

 

 

 

 

x

 

Follow 3 new users

 

 

 

 

 

*Youtube

Upload a high-res video of homes for sale in your area

 

 

 

 

x

Feel free to experiment on the routine that works best for you. Here are other great examples of marketing checklists and routines to inspire you when you create yours:

For more information on how to use social media for specific social networks, you can check these out:

LinkedIn - How to Use LinkedIn to Boost Your Real Estate Business

Facebook - 6 Types of Facebook Posts That'll Help You Generate Leads

Pinterest - Field Guide to Pinterest for REALTORS®

Twitter - Real Estate Agents: Tons of Tips for Tweeting and Twittering

Google+ - Google Plus Will Change Real Estate Marketing With Circles

Make Marketing a Habit

While it might be tempting to do all of these in one go, it’s better to spread out your marketing tasks throughout the week.

Fifteen minutes daily sounds easier to commit to than, say, the entire morning trying to tick off everything on your list. Fifteen minutes is just what it takes to walk to the coffee shop down the street and order coffee and get back.

More importantly, doing this regularly also ensures that you get a steady inflow of leads and you can focus on closing deals. Fifteen minutes of marketing daily, that’s all. And it gets easier as time goes by.

Debra Gawet
Debra is a contributor to Realty Pixels and with her background in Psychology she has expanded her talents into social media. She writes to really help bridge the gap that sometimes exists between being a good realtor and being a great one.


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