We surveyed our readers to find out if they would ever buy a fixer-upper
HomeActions newsletters are distributed by over 5,000 real estate professionals reaching over 3 million email newsletter readers every two weeks. This week, we’re polling our readers to find out if they would ever buy a fixer-upper. Find out how they responded to our August 2018 survey.
Do you want your real estate clients to keep coming back to you again and again? Real estate agents need to employ good client retention practices, and the first rule of thumb is following up after a home sale. Never assume that the job is done after the sale – not if you want those clients to use your services again. Stay in touch. Follow up. Don't let them forget you.
Buyers and sellers want to use the same agent for their next real estate transaction. According to NAR, 88% of buyers say they would use the same agent again.
So how do you make sure that they call you the next time they are moving? Communication. You need to keep yourself top-of-mind with your clients. That doesn't mean you should email or call every day. Chances are they won't use you again if you bombard them. Instead, aim to send them some sort of communication just a couple times a month.
There is an art to following up after the sale, but it does not need to be complicated. Here are some tips for staying in touch with your real estate clients.
1. Send Your Real Estate Clients a Survey After the Closing
Send your clients a quick five-question survey about three weeks after they move into their new home. This three-week time frame is the sweet spot because it gives your clients enough time to get comfortable in their new home. You don't want your follow-up to seem like jusn another chore in the middle of a slew of moving boxes.
Include a personalized note at the top of the survey congratulating them. Ask for some feedback about how they thought the sale went, and inquire if they were satisfied with your service. It may also help to include a housewarming gift with the survey so clients feel as if you were a part of welcoming them into the next chapter of their lives. In most cases, your clients want to hear from you and will be happy to send you feedback.
2. Reach Out to Your Real Estate Clients on Their Birthdays and Anniversaries
Sending holiday cards is a popular way for real estate agents to stay in touch with their clients, but since December greeting cards are so common, they can easily get lost in the holiday shuffle.
Be a little creative when it comes to mailers. Send your past clients a card for their one-year anniversary in their home. No one else will remember that but you, and it's a nice reminder of their milestone. You can also send birthday cards and wedding anniversary cards – even pet birthday cards! If you inject a little fun and creativity into your mailers, this will set you apart from other businesses. Be sure to make everything you send personalized and not generic.
3. Be a Real Estate Resource to Your Clients
More than anything, people will come back to you if you position yourself as a resource to your clients. Be a one-stop authority for everything they need related to their home. Once they move in, be there to provide names of landscaping businesses, plumbers, electricians, roofers and more. You can even create a referral network of local businesses who will mention your services when you mention theirs.
It's also important to let past clients know about other home sales in their neighborhood, information about mortgage rates or new developments in their area that may impact property values. Your past clients will recognize your expertise and want to hire you again if you possition yourself as an expert and a helpful resource.
4. Get Your Real Estate Contacts in Order so You Can Reach Your Entire Sphere of Influence
You might be surprised to learn how many people you're connected with who know someone considering a move. Your sphere of influence includes your friends, family, current and past clients, neighbors, and everyone you're connected with on email and social media. You should be reaching out to these people on a regular basis to remind them that your services are available and you're a trusted resource for everything related to their home and moving. Make sure you organixe all your contacts into one centralized list and communicate with them regularly.
5. Most Agents Utilize Automated Real Estate Newsletters to Stay in Touch
You can easily stay in touch with your sphere of influence by sending out your very own automated email newsletter. Real estate email newsletters are one of the easiest and most effective ways of reaching past and potential clients. Your newsletter can offer advice about buying a home, home improvement tips or information about your own listings.
An email newsletter is a soft approach to keeping in touch with your sphere of influence while offering them useful content about everything related to home-ownership. It's also one of the best ways to position yourself as a real estate resource and stay top of mind with new and existing clients.
A Real Estate Marketing Opportunity Awaits
Real estate agents are always on the move, so it is understandable that you might not have time to organize all the contacts you have in Gmail, Yahoo, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and more. HomeActions provides a twice-monthly automated e-newsletter to everyone in your sphere of influence by doing the organization part on your behalf. The setup takes no more than 48 hours, and you will be delivered an alphabetical list, organized by where the contact came from (Gmail, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.), which will be used to automatically send your contacts a newsletter chock-full of great content. Once you have an organized sphere of influence, you can use it however you see fit, such as for real estate farming purposes.
HomeActions offers a set-it-and-forget-it product that you know is delivering your contacts valuable content on your behalf. However, there are tons of options to customize the content as you see fit, and we encourage you to feature your current listings.
Visit HomeActions.net today to start connecting with your clients after the sale and building more referral opportunities.
We surveyed our readers to find out which time of year is best to do home repairs or improvements
HomeActions newsletters are distributed by over 5,000 real estate professionals reaching over 3 million email newsletter readers every two weeks. This week, we’re polling our readers to find out which time of year is best to do home repairs or improvements. Find out how they responded to our August 2018 survey.
We surveyed our readers to find out how many TVs they have
HomeActions newsletters are distributed by over 5,000 real estate professionals reaching over 3 million email newsletter readers every two weeks. This week, we’re polling our readers to find out how many TVs they have. Find out how they responded to our July 2018 survey.
We surveyed our readers to find out if they lock their doors
HomeActions newsletters are distributed by over 5,000 real estate professionals reaching over 3 million email newsletter readers every two weeks. This week, we’re polling our readers to learn whether they lock their doors or not. Find out how they responded to our July 2018 survey.
What will fill your marketing editorial calendar in the months ahead? It can be daunting to lay out writing assignments for your marketing efforts, but it does not have to be. With a bit of forethought and planning, you can tap into writing inspiration on a regular basis.
Focus your real estate newsletter writing.
Your first step should always be to consider your audience. To really craft meaningful lead-generating content, you need to focus on your target market. The goal is to keep your readers’ needs in mind while also keeping your business growth goals in mind when writing marketing content.
What are your goals?
Map out a hierarchy of what is most important to building you pipeline.
Are you trying to build up specialty areas, such as vacation properties or retirement properties?
Looking to generate more new opportunities overall?
Seeking to improve client retention and nurture existing relationships?
Want to stand out in a competitive marketplace?
Growing a base of referral sources?
Lead generating content has a pain/gain approach. It is important to consider your goals when you begin building lead-generating content. Your articles should provide a path toward solving a pain point so readers naturally follow that path to seek out your services.
Think about how your services could tie into an article and offer an obvious connection back to you for help. Focus on providing just enough relevant advice to give your prospects the confidence that you are the expert source who can address their real estate needs.
The next natural step for your readers should be to connect with your firm to solve their needs.
When you have key articles focused on generating new opportunities and leads integrated into your strategies, be sure you’re setting lead alerts so you can follow up on new warm prospects.
What should you write?
Inspiration can originate partly from preparation and partly from borrowing existing ideas. It’s always good to have a stockpile of starting-point themes to fall back on when writer’s block inevitably strikes.
“Inspired” Ideas for Your Next Article
Q&A – Or “Dear Abby” Approach
This vs. That Strategy Comparison
All of the ideas here could come from a single interview with a client. If you sat down and interviewed a client for just 30 minutes, you could get all the information you needed to create five articles with each of the above approaches. If you did this with just several clients, you could stagger that content out and have a full calendar of meaningful content for a year.
More Ideas to Inspire Creative Content:
Trending Topics Following Current Events
Common Mistakes and How To Avoid Them
Spotlight Your Team Members
Feature Events and Philanthropic Involvement
Don’t forget to invite a bit of the human element into your content marketing to help readers develop brand loyalty and keep your audience engaged. People stories for fun, and features focused on your staff members’ pets, babies and activities can be a delightful addition to your marketing.
Fun Topics to Consider:
A dog day at the office
Match the staff member with the baby photo
Birth announcements – tiny tee shirts with your brand logo on new babies
Take Your Child to Work Day
Holiday or seasonal themes
Office family picnic highlights
“Where’s Waldo” theme following staff members on vacation snapping a photo at a noteworthy spot with your company mascot
When does timing impact my writing?
You should be following deadlines and seasonal trends to develop an annual content calendar for your firm. Take note of holidays and changing seasons to inject timely, fun themes into your writing. Incorporate these strategies to keep your content marketing fresh and engaging.
During an interview with ATTOM™ Data Solutions for their June edition of the Housing News Report, Barry Friedman, CEO at HomeActions, explained the different forms of lead-generating content in real estate marketing. Some content is created to provide information for the reader. While this type of content may not explicitly promote a brand, its intention is to stimulate interest in the brand’s products or services. There is also actionable content designed to trigger a response from a consumer, indicating a warm lead. Paired with an interactive neighborhood data feature called Neighborhood360, actionable, lead-generating content is designed to both help the consumer learn more about a desired area and produce a high-quality lead for a real estate professional.
Barry J. Friedman, CEO of HomeActions, LLC
1. What is your elevator pitch for HomeActions?
HomeActions is a cloud-based platform designed to help agents communicate more effectively with their sphere of influence: their clients, prospects and referral sources. We try to get agents connected to a potential customer as early into the buying cycle as possible, before the customer has decided to buy or sell. And we do that primarily through content marketing.
We provide the content in the newsletters, and we’ve developed unique systems to tell when a client or prospect has put their toe in the water, meaning they are ready for a real estate transaction.
We’ve found that content comes in different forms. There is just information, just designed to provide information, not to elicit a response. Then there is trigger content. We start all trigger articles out with “is this your situation?”. If this is not their situation, they are probably not going to read it. No matter what we say afterward, if someone clicks on that article in my mind it is a warm lead — someone you would want to go in your pipeline.
Another key type of content we use in our newsletters is an interactive article. There is special technology associated with it. What this is about is how do you build your pipeline so that eventually people come out of your pipeline and become clients?
I started a previous company called BizActions which was sold to Thomson Reuters in 2012. From 2012 I really got into HomeActions wanting to build it up. We think we are the largest in the real estate space delivering about 3.5 million newsletters every two weeks on behalf of our 5,000 Realtor clients. We help those clients put together their database. We learned you can’t have content marketing without a database. We de-dupe it and cleanse it to make sure the email addresses are as clean as possible.
2. How is HomeActions utilizing ATTOM Data Solutions?
Our interactive articles are what uses ATTOM data. It’s basically a know-yourneighborhood type of article. Or if you are looking for real estate, check out the neighborhood first. When they click that article, we provide some content about why this information is important. Then we ask for their name and phone number.
We ask “why are you interested in this content?”. You wouldn’t think people would answer that but they do. These are purpose questions, and there are six purpose questions. They check off the ones that apply. When they hit submit, we then go to ATTOM’s servers and grab that property and we deliver a URL to them that gives them all the property and neighborhood information.
We’ve kept certain things in and kept certain things out. We don’t include crime statistics. We used to include AVM (Automated Valuation Model) in there but we took that out and we made AVM a separate article. Some Realtors like the AVM component because if someone is looking for the value of a property that is a heck of lead.
We then deliver that neighborhood data to the client. And they are always happy about. They often check it for several properties. Then we send it over to the Realtor with the reason why they are looking for the information. Mr. Smith is looking to buy a house. That’s a heck of a warm lead.
3. How is the marketplace responding to HomeActions products/services?
Realtors are happy with having that type of local information. I would say that it has gone over well with the Realtors.
We kept on getting more and more interest in this information, and how we managed the information. We figured out a way to take your data and make it work in a lead generation environment.
We just came out with a new feature where you can add advertisements to your newsletter and there is a shared revenue component so you can share the revenue from that. We do all the work. We are sending out about 7 million newsletters every month. Let’s build the template of our newsletter in such a way where we can embed unobtrusive advertising, share the money with the Realtor, and that way we can make money off all these contacts. We already have 100-plus Realtors signed up.
4. Why did HomeActions decide to use ATTOM Data Solutions?
There were a few companies that had the data so it wasn’t like ATTOM was the only one. But I like the way they presented the data, and there was some flexibility so I could add some things and subtract some things. And the people were nice. I didn’t know if I could afford this. I didn’t know if people would like it or not. So we were able to start out with flexible pricing. That worked out really well for me because I could gauge whether my clients were interested or not, and we kept on getting more and more penetration. Then we decided to integrate into our overall product. And that’s when I went back to negotiate a fixed-price contract. And that is working out well.
5. What has been your experience with the data delivery?
We have had no problem. Maybe one little problem where the data was not updated promptly, but we got that fixed quickly.
6. What has been your experience with the data quality?
I’ve had no problem with data delivery or data quality with the exception that ATTOM hasn’t built an API that allows me to send information on Realtors so that when you present the neighborhood data you present it as branded with that Realtor. We haven’t been able to do that in an eloquent way.
7. What has been your experience with customer service?
Customer service has been fine. People have been very nice.
ATTOM Data Solutions is a leading provider of publicly recorded tax, deed, mortgage and foreclosure data along with proprietary neighborhood and parcel-level risk data for more than 155 million U.S. properties.
As published in the June 2018 issue of the Housing News Report Newsletter.
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HomeActions newsletters are distributed by over 5,000 real estate professionals reaching over 3 million email newsletter readers every two weeks. This week, we’re polling our readers to learn which of these home design trends should die in 2018. Find out how they responded to our July 2018 survey.
We surveyed our readers to find out how often they deep clean their kitchens
HomeActions newsletters are distributed by over 5,000 real estate professionals reaching over 3 million email newsletter readers every two weeks. This week, we’re polling our readers to learn how frequently they deep clean their kitchens. Find out how they responded to our June 2018 survey.
We surveyed our readers to find out their preferred home appliance brand
HomeActions newsletters are distributed by over 5,000 real estate professionals reaching over 3 million email newsletter readers every two weeks. This week, we’re polling our readers to learn about their preferred home appliance brand. Find out how they responded to our May 2018 survey.