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Real Estate Marketing

Top 5 false claims real estate pros use in their marketing

(MARKETING) Real estate pros are known for making sweeping proclamations about their quality without backing it up. Let’s discuss this annoyance, Andy Rooney style.

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I just wanted everyone to know that I am the “Number One Executive Evers,” I also help lead the “Number One Fastest Growing News Organization” in the world. We have the “Highest Reader Satisfaction On The Web,” and I was voted the “Best Wife In The World.” There, I said it.

What’s that you say? How can you disagree with my claims? I put them in print, they must be true! Alas, some of these may not be true, much like blatant imaginative statements made on real estate websites and business cards worldwide. Is this the stuff your marketing is made of? As most of you know, I’m not a Realtor, but I am a consumer who long worked 70+ hours at a boutique firm. With that, I give you my Top 5 Offensive (and often false) Claims:

CLAIM #1- Top Realtor

This is a personal favorite – simply Google “Top [insert your city here] Realtor” and the results are endless. How is it possible that hundreds of people are ALSO the “Top Realtor” in your city? This claim is frequently used because it is subjective, but when everyone claims this ranking, it falls on deaf ears!

So, what does your claim mean? Are you the top highest producing, the top recruiting broker in the city, or do you claim the top closing ratio? All of us here know that fluff is abundant on websites and canned material still rules the day, but if you have to fake it… it ain’t that good.

CLAIM #2- Your Neighborhood Specialist

There are many specialists out there, and several Realtors can specialize in the same subdivision, but don’t close your eyes, point at a map and pick a spot to farm, thus claiming your “specialty.” That would be like ME saying that I am THE Scripps Ranch, CA specialist (yet I’ve never been there and besides, the Bergs have it on lockdown).

I got a flyer on the door the other day. This Realtor claimed to be my neighborhood’s specialist and “Top Realtor.” Strange- I have never seen a sign in anyone’s yard with your name on it here – not once. Hmm… a look at the MLS and… nope, you haven’t had a listing in this subdivision since it broke ground four years ago, so my bet is that my neighborhood looked sexy and you wanted to be invited to the party. Fine, but don’t make false claims – your market will see right through you.

Please don’t say you are a specialist unless you really are! I would hate to go to a gastroenterologist only to learn he’s actually a pediatrician.

CLAIM #3- Top 1% of Agents

Top One Percenters get under my skin in a big way. Locally, there’s a super smarmy Realtor whose website features a clip art illustration of a guy with a huge screw in his back saying “don’t let this happen to you” followed up with his doctored photo, his name and claims to be in the “Top 1% of Agents Nationwide.”

I know he is a major producer, so I might believe him, but where does he get this number? Where does anyone not actually in the Top 1% get this number? If I were a Realtor and I was in the Top 1%, I’d be linking to every flashy site that mentioned my honor, lest consumers think I’m using a subjective term.

If you have a claim to fame (as I know some of you do), don’t just say it- back it up!

Your consumers would like to know – what are you the “Top 1%” of?!?!! Put “Top 1%” on your business card, but let people know what you are the best at (Top 1% of new home sales achieved in May 2016, Top 1% of Realtors who have been in the industry for under 12 months). Otherwise, to the consumer, it is fluffy fluffy fluff fluff.

CLAIM #4- Fastest Growing Company

This isn’t exclusive to Real Estate, but it is abused frequently in the industry. Look, there is a grassroots brokerage here that has cute marketing and is up to four agents; they claim to be the “fastest growing company” in Austin… how is this measured? By percentage? If you have two people in a company and add one person that year, your company has grown by 50% – woo hoo!

Wait, should I be impressed with that? Be careful of how you market your growth, don’t just make blanket statements.

CLAIM #5- Highest Customer Satisfaction

How is this measured? Did your assistant call after each closing and ask, “yes or no, were you satisfied with Mr. Realtor?” or is it based on a national survey, an Internet Poll, an obscure ratings website, or is it an honor bestowed upon you by a builder or your local Board? If you have proof, back it up, otherwise, knock it off.

The takeaway

The words “top,” “best,” and “specialist” are frequently abused in the real estate lexicon. Many Realtors have beaten these dramatic claims to death. Consumers do like flowery speech and if I were buying/selling, I would love knowing that my Realtor is the best. But as a consumer I can tell you – give me what I want – tell what you are the best at!

Blanket statements can come across as lies, so be specific! As Seth Godin says, “just saying it doesn’t make it true.” In your marketing and on your website, link to the sites that have given you honors, OR simply state, “Top Producing Re/Max Agent in Michigan!” Period.

#CrapClaims

Lani is the Chief Operating Officer at The Real Daily and sister news outlet, The American Genius, and has been named in the Inman 100 Most Influential Real Estate Leaders several times, co-authored a book, co-founded BASHH and Austin Digital Jobs, and is a seasoned business writer and editorialist with a penchant for the irreverent.

Real Estate Marketing

LinkTree is one of many tools you need for social media marketing

(MARKETING NEWS) When it comes to social media marketing, there are ways to get more coverage than just your feed — linktree is one of them.

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If you’re a marketer, especially in any sort of lifestyle or cultural space, the benefits of Instagram are undeniable. From its visual format to its fast-growing user base, Instagram is becoming a go-to visual media platform in an era where audiences are eager for it.

There’s just one problem; turning that attention into engagement is difficult. Links back to stories can only be shared in your profile bio, instead of within specific posts. For content marketers and publishers, changing out links at least once a day can be a hassle.

Thankfully, there are tools out there to help overcome these issues, no matter what your budget might be. We can look at LinkTree and LikeShop for two distinct examples of that range.

Both tools offer a standalone web page, with its own URL, where users can access an assortment of articles from a publisher. Each article is linked using a picture that a user would see on the publisher’s Instagram, and the user can access a historical archive of all articles in one place.

Best of all, you never have to change out a link in your profile; much like a custom URL shortener, your users can access the content you want them to see through one single URL.

Logistical benefits aside, publishers also enjoy data feedback through LikeShop and LinkTree. Depending on the tool used, you can see traffic numbers broken down by article, by day, etc.

These tools also allow you to customize the visuals and templates of your landing page, so that your brand experience is more consistent across these social media touch points.

LikeShop has been around for a while as an enterprise solution.

You can find its technology employed by Conde Nast publishers, such as Pitchfork and Vanity Fair, along with a host of others. As such, pricing isn’t openly disclosed, either on or off their website (that’s code for “it’s probably really expensive”).

However, it does have the most features of the two solutions. Mainly, Instagram publishers who push product can insert commercial links directly into their posts, to help increase conversions.

LinkTree is a newcomer to the game, and they are looking to bring a more affordable solution to market. In addition to offering a standalone free tier of service, they also offer a pro package for $6 per month. The pro plan gives you more customization and tracking options.

Whichever one works for you, these tools are a great investment for making your social media following engage with your website content, be it educational or commercial.

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Real Estate Marketing

Be your own hero, make your own dang animated gif

(MARKETING NEWS) Oh, the ubiquitousness of gifs! People love them, and let’s face it: gifs sell. Why not make your own?

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A gif for any occasion

Oh, the ubiquitousness of gifs! Who knew that in just a handful of seconds you could have a moving image ready to convey the perfect situational response or reaction. There’s something so fun and memorable about using gifs to express yourself. Next time you’re ready to sling a celebratory gif to your sister after hearing about her promotion, or a pizza gif to your family and friends to indicate your Friday night dinner plans, why not consider making your own gif?

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Don’t let pop culture speak for you

With gifs.com, you can take your self-made content and tailor it to be the gif that’s perfect for you! The possibilities are almost endless: You can use a gif to share the latest developments in a product you’re working on, or for more personal ends. Maybe you’d like to share your latest cooking experiment, or a few steps of a walk you took on a particularly beautiful winter day.

Grab a link to content from your YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter – or simply upload a video from your own computer. Adjust the timing of your gif, add any effect you want (including this amazing Deal With It effect) and then create your gif.

But pop culture can speak for us too…

You can also use Gifs.com to create custom gifs from already well-known content. Sometimes, our favorite TV characters, star athletes, YouTubers or musicians can express something for us better than we ever could ourselves, and all the gif digging in the world won’t find us the exact image we’re looking for. There’s nothing wrong getting an assist from a reliable character!

You can upload content from your computer if you have something saved, but you can also grab content from almost any social site on the internet.

Those little extras never hurt

Gifs.com allows you to customize your gif’s link. This means that if you create something destined for meme-worthiness, you can link back to your own site and drive traffic on your blog or online store.

You’ll also have the ability to add stickers, text, and effects that will take your gif creation to the next level.

Considering this service is free, it almost seems wrong not to share your Gifs creations far and wide!

#GifMaster

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Real Estate Marketing

Refocusing your marketing strategy from millennials to Gen Z

(MARKETING NEWS) Gen Z will have more purchasing power, and be more prone to spending than the generations before them, and will be at a homebuying age before you know it – time to adapt.

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teen gen z

Time to refocus

Research on Gen Z is increasing as they graduate and enter the workforce. The biggest misconception is that they are just another kind of millennial. In fact, they are similar to the generation raised during the Great Depression.

And while they might share dependence on technology and short attention spans with the millennial crowd, some trends in Gen Z are remarkably different. This just might include their views on homeownership and the American Dream – while millennials seemed to have overwhelmingly rejected these things, Gen Z might be surprisingly traditional. We will be keeping an eye on them as they begin to enter adulthood. For now, your marketing strategies will need to be adjusted accordingly.

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Trying to get Gen Z on the phone?

Unlike millennials, Gen Z does not prefer all the digital interactions available. They are more likely to use click-to-call features, especially after texting or chatting first.

Once on the phone, though, the Gen Z cohort is more likely to hang up quickly, curse at the person on the line, or be frustrated if there is no immediate answer.

In a world where there are several avenues of communication with a company, Gen Z seems to want a more personal touch.

But they are more impatient about waiting for it.

Why does it matter?

This impatience and short attention span are tied to Generation Z being the most plugged in group, like, ever. “Gen Z consumers can be speaking to a customer agent, research everything that agent is saying and simultaneously tweet about how great or awful their experience is,” Sabrina Gravlee, Analytics Manager at the Marchex Institute.

Millennials, who prefer to make even large purchases digitally without any face-to-face or phone contact, got a lot of people thinking that was a trend that would change everything, and permanently. No car lots, no cashiers, no person-to-person selling. And that still might happen. But the Gen Z research suggests that a balance might be struck finally.

Perhaps the millennials were the opposite end of the pendulum from their baby boomer parents, and now we are back in the middle ground.

Marketing strategies on fleek

In any case, businesses would be wise to consider a hybrid approach as Generation Z becomes a bigger part of their consumer bases.

Some sources predict that they will have more purchasing power, and be more prone to spending than the generations before them.

“The faster businesses can understand the patterns and preferences of Generation Z, the faster they can gain footing with this next wave of consumer growth and ensure their own success.” say Gravlee.

Companies who adapt quickly to their youngest potential customers will be ahead of the game as we see Gen Z grow into their consumer status.

See the full report here.

#GenZ

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