As a real estate agent, why do I need an internet marketing plan anyway? Is it really an important key to the future success of my real estate business? Maybe you’ve heard other agents complain that their website just doesn’t produce any results. Mine didn’t either, that’s because most websites leave out one super important feature of a successful online marketing plan, the strategy itself! (No I’m not a real estate website salesman) In fact, being online is crucial to your business success if you are plan on staying in business for the long-term. The problem is most people know nothing about successful internet marketing.
Real quick note: Before starting any online strategy, you must know that there are two different but equally as important parts to a successful online plan.
SEO. Search Engine Optimization. On page and off page.
Online Marketing. The touchy-feelies, call to action, etc.
In short, SEO gets you in front of the prospect and online marketing determines if the prospect likes you or not.
We must revamp our real estate marketing plan to include the internet, especially with all the new technology and opportunities available to us online. You know as well as I that we really don’t have the option to “opt out” of this one. The internet is here to stay and our ways of doing business certainly have, and will continue changing as the Web continues to grow and becomes even more the “primary” way people transact and exchange information.
The question is have you noticed? If you answered no, you might be one of the few brokers left who are still convinced that this “internet” thing-a-ma-jigy will just go away…someday, if you wish hard enough.
On the other hand, though, you may have conceded to the fact that you do need a solid web-based real estate marketing plan but you don’t know where to start. You don’t want to get suckered into a “guru program” and spend a bunch of money only to find yourself with the same terrible results that your old canned website produced. Again, a website is not adequate in itself to produce any measurable results and is not internet marketing or SEO. I break down the differences of online marketing and SEO in another article.
When it comes to online technology and internet strategies do you feel like you’re in the middle of the movie, The Matrix, where everything seems to be a bunch of meaningless green letters and symbols just floating across the screen? (it makes sense if you’ve actually seen the movie) My point is you feel lost. If you do, its important to understand that you don’t need to know any of that techie stuff to learn to do what I and other successful real estate agents do to succeed online. You might be encouraged to know that many brokers who start learning the techniques I’m talking about are anything but tech-savvy. Some are even strangers to browsing and email.
Now, I don’t consider myself a super wiz kid or anything when it comes to technology either, but when it comes to SEO and online marketing…that I can do. So you might be thinking to yourself; okay Mr. Smartypants, why don’t you just tell us how to do everything you do so we all can have an effective online marketing strategy too…right now? I’d love to, but truthfully, it takes more hands on than just reading one simple article to learn how to put the pieces together and work. Instead, I think I’ll start with some of the things that you don’t need to understand to kick- start your new agent success plan.
You don’t need to:
Understand the Google and other search engine algorithms.
You don’t need to know how to write computer language.
You don’t need to consider yourself a pro at the internet.
You don’t need to be “tech” savvy. Some students are even new to email and browsing!
You don’t need to pay a guru for their help. They usually charge you too much anyway.
Knowing the need and understanding the benefits and success potential you could have with a solid internet marketing plan, you just need to decide how you are going to learn the nuts and bolts, strategy, techniques, needed to take your business success to the next level. Because I wanted to collapse time frames and get moving quickly, I chose to hire a private mentor to coach to train me. Or, you can read books, research web articles and spend the next year or two trying to figure it out.
There are many different techniques you could learn to attack the market online, but my suggestion is to learn 3 or 4 to start. That way, you won’t get exhausted, overwhelmed, and give up. I believe it is very important to start like I did:
Get a mentor or training system
Learn a few powerful and proven techniques and master them quickly.
Get an auto-responder system (like AWeber)
Start seeing results in 6-8 weeks with diligence.
What kind of results? Well, what is our goal with any marketing plan? Leads, or better yet, FREE inbound buyer and seller leads! This is the reward for any well thought out and targeted marketing plan, whether it’s offline or online. The main purpose of an internet strategy is to create a system for free inbound leads where prospects contact you for your real estate services. I’d say this is a much better (and rewarding) plan than spending hundreds of dollars on postcards, mailers, and print advertising where you get one (hopeful) bang for your buck, then it’s over. As a matter of fact, the techniques I use are free, and once I create an internet sales funnel (or pipeline), it keeps working for me 24 hours a day, 7 days a week! I don’t know about you, but if I can find massive success online through free techniques, I’m all in.
Here are some of my favorite internet marketing techniques:
Blogs and share blogs
You see, that doesn’t sound too hard right? The key is to master the methods, techniques, and strategies that will boost you in the search engine results and not risk identifying your content as spam. This is where search engine optimization (SEO) comes into play. This is also why I recommend reading my article about SEO and Internet Marketing.