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Email Marketing General Lead Funnels

Estate agents. Why your approach to cold leads could be costing you money

In a busy estate agency, the number one commodity is time. You’ve got vendor calls to make, viewings to follow up, enquiries to reply to.

So, when it comes to talking to potential vendors who are clearly not serious about selling, what do you do? How many of these cold leads make it on to your call list? And even if they do how often do they get called in favour of your hotter leads?

It makes sense that when your time is at a premium to focus energy on the leads that will provide the best results. What is interesting is that whilst many estate agents talk to us about lead generation, many overlook this long-term potential source of income. Even worse some are trying but get their approach wrong, damaging the chances of a future conversion.

You may well be spending money on expensive lead generation when you have a potential source of long-term leads right in front of you.

Cold leads can be a challenge to convert

One of the challenges is that a high number of leads won’t convert. This can leave you feeling tired and frustrated. However, to maximise this opportunity we must overcome this feeling and turn it into a positive. Let’s for a moment, think about the consumer at the time of their initial enquiry.

In the scenario of an instant online valuation quite often they were just curious about the value of their home. The majority will not be ready to sell and simply looking to get a rough guide on price.

Now, thinking about an applicant who registers with you. When they registered with you their main goal was to be notified of the best properties that suit their needs. Of course, as part of your qualification, you should get to know their circumstances and identify if there is an instruction opportunity. But again, many will tell you they are fine or not ready because you have not yet earned their trust.

How to improve your results

There are however two key areas that you can focus on to improve your results. Some of the leading UK estate agents are taking action and in return growing more rewarding and profitable businesses as a result.

There are many reasons for their success but we have identified two in particular:

1. Ensuring their staff are well trained professional and happy

They have happy staff who have mastered the art of listening as well as selling to deliver great customer service. Industry trainers like Julian O’dell and Matt Giggs can have an amazing impact on both your team’s happiness and motivation. Not only that, but they can transform how staff speak to potential clients. To get more valuable information but in a way that builds a relationship and trust.

Look to build a solid foundation for your business. This will increase not only your success with these cold leads, but also referral opportunities, repeat business and your ability to get social proof for your future marketing.

2. Understanding that they can’t speak to everyone 24/7

Becuase dealing with so many leads and conversations presents a real challenge, they complement their personal service by adding technology which can help them nurture these relationships and identify timely opportunities for action. In particular, introducing email nurturing can be one of the lowest cost ways to achieve this.

Create an effective follow-up plan which combines email, SMS and phone calls to build a trusting relationship over time. It must be geared towards their unique situation, not simply full of self promotional messages. Allowing you to stand out as the local experts and estate agent of choice.

 

Need Help?

What about GDPR?

With GDPR and changes to e-privacy coming very soon, following up cold leads will become increasingly challenging. Establishing a strong relationship, coupled with creating a relevant nurture program could help you convince potential leads to let you keep in touch. In comparison, your competition will become trapped, unable to contact recent leads, because they failed to get consent.

Conclusion

Smart estate agents ensure their teams are well trained, that they continue to be engaging with a high level of customer empathy. When they ask the question about keeping in touch they are able to clearly communicate the benefits to the client. Ensuring the client opts-in to continue to receive their message. They often look for ways automate this to deliver the same high standards even when they get busy. Maximising their long-term opportunity from cold leads and boosting profits.

If you are interested in implementing a nurture program for your leads, check out our software or get in touch.

Categories
Email Marketing

3 Email Marketing Ideas For Estate Agents On A Budget

Have you ever thought about trying email marketing for your estate agency but been put off by the costs? Or perhaps you can’t quite see how email fits into your estate agency business. In this article, we share 3 email marketing ideas for estate agents to get you started that won’t break the bank.

The Problem

When it comes to email marketing software for estate agents many would have you believe that fully integrated expensive custom software is the way to go.

Whilst there are many benefits to working with a provider like Propology who gets your industry-specific requirements, it is also worth considering your options. If you are just starting out with email marketing then it may make more financial sense to try an off the shelf email marketing software until you start to see results.

GDPR and Consent

With the impending GDPR legislation, many of the automated practices such as adding everyone to your mailing list without consent are likely to be considered non-compliant.

This means without consent you will not be able to market to your leads and clients. With that in mind, the majority will need to implement a system where you either ask every client and record their permission or find ways to get clients to sign up themselves online.

Estate agents requirements for email

Email remains at the heart of the majority of marketing campaigns. The reason is that unlike Facebook or Twitter where you rent your audience, email gives you direct access to a list of people who have signalled they actually want to receive your message.

When it comes to choosing estate agency email software for the majority of independent estate agents the requirements are really quite simple:

  • Quickly creating and sending newsletters to their own mailing list
  • Setting up automated email nurture sequences to engage new prospects over time for relatively little effort
  • Sending helpful professional looking follow-up emails
  • Easily adding GDPR compliant sign-up forms for lead capture from their website and social media

 

3 email marketing options if you are on a budget:

With all that in mind. We thought it would be good to put together a list of 3 email marketing software alternatives for you if you are just getting started and or on a limited budget:

 

1. AWeber

AWeber is one of the cheapest options for your email marketing. AWeber can cost as little as $19 for up to 500 subscribers & unlimited emails. If you want to run a basic newsletter then its perfect for that. Easily create sign up forms and add them to your website or blog.

You can also deliver your basic email sequences. Design a sequence of emails to follow up leads and have them automatically delivered within days or weeks.

Our view is while AWeber is a great cheap option, it is less refined than the other systems on the market. However, if your requirements are basic then why pay more? Check it out using our banner below:


Start Your Free Trial Today!

2. Gmail templates

You might be surprised to hear us mention this one but when you are just starting out or small then using templates in your email program can actually be the best option. It allows you to decide who gets which email and when.

Save time when sending common emails by creating a template and then simply adding the client’s details and personalising before sending. Examples include before a valuation, welcoming new applicants and following up valuations. Sharing templates across teams is a bit more of a challenge. This option is a good place to start when making your emails more consistent and more professional looking.

For those of you using Gmail we’ve found this helpful article which shows you how to enable templates in Gmail

This option, unfortunately, doesn’t scale well. Imagine trying to keep track of multiple emails for each client in your list and sending each one manually. This can soon add up to hours making it cheaper to use a proper email marketing system instead.

ActiveCampaign managed through Propology Digital.

Yes, this list would not be complete without our own recommendation. We are an official partner of ActiveCampaign and can sell it to you at competitive rates. Using our service means you get support from an industry specialist without paying the heavy cost of bespoke software.

Emails are really easy to create using the drag and drop editor. When it comes to building up nurture sequences and creating automated flows for your clients then ActiveCampaign wins hands down.

With Propology we also help you configure these as part of our service. It is still one of the cheapest systems available but with the power of a proper marketing automation platform. Bonus features include Facebook integration, website tracking and much more.

To find out more information why not explore our marketing software for estate agents

So there you have it. If you are in the market for email marketing software for your estate agency then it is worth considering our recommendations. If you found this article useful please share it with your colleagues.

Categories
Email Marketing Lead Funnels

How to convert more estate agent website visitors using property selling tips

As your audience grows often people will be engaged with your social media and familiar with your brand. However, you have still not managed to convert them to a lead and capture their email address.

The property selling tips funnel is designed to help you capture more leads. In return, potential vendors get a useful professional looking series of selling tips. In this example, it is delivered through a sequence of emails sent over several weeks. Alternatively, it can also be an ebook download if you prefer. The benefit of the email series is it gives you several ongoing chances to impress them.

In this help series, we will refer to marketing funnels as the main way to drive engagement. If you are unfamiliar with funnels read our article lead funnels for estate agency marketing.

The Basic Funnel Stages

The funnel starts after you have an engaged audience who are familiar with your brand and visiting your content regularly, either via your blog, website or existing social media audience. The tips should be promoted by various call to action (CTA) banners on your website.

To gain additional signups you should create a paid Facebook retargeting ad specifically to your engaged audience. Clicking the ad will take them to a dedicated landing page explaining more about the selling tips and what they will get if they sign up.

In addition to delivering the selling tips sequence through a series of emails, you should offer them the chance to subscribe to your newsletter. This will allow you to keep engaging them even after the series is complete.

The Funnel
Property Selling Tips FunnelThe main stages explained

1. Create an interesting series of property selling tips. 

The aim of the selling tips is to help potential vendors have the best possible experience when selling their home. By the end of the series, they should be confident you are the local property experts. Create a series of around 4-6 selling tips. Then use an email software for estate agents like Propology to deliver the sequence automatically to people over several weeks after they sign up.

Tip: Ideally keep the tips engaging and catered towards your typical audience. Consider linking to additional content on your website and also video content to make it more interesting.

2. Create banners to promote your selling tips. 

Cross promoting your selling tips on your existing channels is the best way to get free sign-ups. This could include banners on your website and property blog. Also any other vendor related pages.

3. Create a dedicated landing page to allow people to subscribe to your selling tips

You should have a dedicated landing page which is solely for them to sign up for your selling tips. It should explain the benefits and entice them to sign up.

Tip: GDPR is coming. Ensure you are clear and the lead agrees to your terms and conditions by affirmative action. Consider an additional tick box on the form to sign up for your newsletter.

4. Create a Facebook audience to retarget those who view your blog and selling pages but don’t sign up for your tips series.

If someone showed interest in your blog then they are closer to converting than someone who did not. Also, people who visit your selling page might be thinking of selling but not ready to sell yet. By targeting this group you can increase the chance of sign up for your tips series. Create a dedicated audience on Facebook for people who visited these pages. You can then can use this audience to run different ads to learn which one works best.

5. Create a Facebook audience to retarget those who view your sign-up page but don’t sign up. 

Again, a high percentage of people who view your sign-up page will leave without completing the form. You can create a Facebook audience and a sponsored ad to target this group and try to convince them to come back and sign up.

Tip: Keep this audience time sensitive to avoid overexposing someone to your ad.

6. Ensure those people who sign up are added to your tips series and tagged properly

Completing the form should automatically trigger a Thank You email and the first tip. It should be followed by the sequence of other tips either several days later or after they read each tip.

Tip: Properly recording who signed up, from what source and capturing their permission for GDPR purposes will allow you to properly manage this list into the future.

7. Cross promote your newsletter

Ensure your emails are at least 80% focused on useful tips. Towards the end consider adding a banner or message. It can either be to request a valuation or about joining your newsletter. If you manage to get them to join your newsletter then you can continue to market to them after the series has completed. By using a software like Propology you can make this content only show to people who have not previously registered.

Tip: Always make this a secondary priority otherwise you will cause them to unsubscribe or worse report you for abuse. The primary goal is to get them to learn about your brand and expertise through sharing helpful advice.

Conclusion

As you can see, the property selling tips is a great way to showcase your local knowledge and property expertise. Once set up it needs very little management, which is great news for those with less time.

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Categories
Email Marketing

5 Helpful Emails Every Estate Agent Should Send

We have put together a list of the top 5 helpful emails every estate agent should be sending to their clients.

Why send email marketing?

When you think of email marketing you often think of spam. You think of those sales emails that try to sell you promotional offers that you simply delete or ignore. You think of your inbox filling up with hundreds of emails of no interest to you.

However, you may be surprised to hear that as an estate agent using email marketing this is not always the case. As estate agents, you are in a unique position thanks to moving home being so important to your clients.

As a result, you can expect a much higher rate of engagement if you send high-value emails.

 

Following Best Practice

A new trend is emerging in email marketing called personalised email marketing automation. And whilst it sounds boring it is making a real difference to companies that use it properly.

The key to success is both what you send and also how you do it. Sending helpful content that is personal to each individual should be your ultimate goal.

Timing is also very important. Imagine if you send selling tips after the sale has fallen through. Or an email about your great service after they have complained about not knowing what is going on you with their property.

Poor timing can mean you will have both missed your opportunity to wow your clients and to have made a real difference to the process.

 

The 5 emails every estate agent should send

Below are our top 5 emails we think every estate agent should be sending to their estate agency clients:

1. Pre-market appraisal email

This email should set the tone for the appointment. It should help them learn about both the process and also you. It is your chance to put your agency in the first place before you meet.

Content should include some of the following ideas:

  • Personalised text about looking forward to seeing them
  • What to expect from the appointment,
  • Some tips or things to consider either of the valuation or choosing between agents
  • Any relevant local market knowledge to set you apart from the competition.
  • You can also introduce your company and how it helps vendors like them. Consider adding examples of social proof such as testimonials or links to online review sites.

 

Try to keep the sections in the email clear and link off to additional content on your website. You may want to experiment with different layouts to see which is most successful. Also, experiment with video and images.

 

2. Thank you for instructing us. Here is our guide to what happens next.

The purpose of this email is to set expectations and help them understand what you will be doing next. Help them understand what you will be doing and how they need to play their part. Other ideas include sending a step by step guide to the selling process. Try not to set false expectations or use too much industry-specific jargon. Again, if you can personalise the message even better.

 

Bonus email: Preparing your property in the best light

Send a small teaser email to help them understand how preparing their property for sale can have a big impact on the value achieved. This could be a brief email with a link to a detailed article or video on your website. Examples include how photos can impact click-through rates on Rightmove or how small jobs can make a real difference to getting what they want, a good price for their property.

 

Need Help?

 

3. The email that shows you actually are listening to them

Send 1 unique email for their situation with either a link to further help or a referral to a trusted local supplier. The idea is to ensure your staff have listened and you are able to demonstrate that by adding value that is unique to them.

It could be they are downsizing, it could be they need to get something fixed or improved before listing. Whatever it is, send one email which shows you have listened and that genuinely helps them with their situation.

 

4. How are we doing?

The number of times I have heard complaints from friends and family about they couldn’t get the photos right, or they took longer than I expected. Or they are not keeping me updated. Communication is vital to your estate agencies long-term success.

Send them a how are we doing email shortly after the property has gone live, while the relationship is still strong. Try to find out if there is anything that could have been better or they are not happy about. Ideally, make it feel personal and genuine. Feedback is a key part of improving your service long term.

 

5. The sale next steps email

You know that the sale is often a complex and difficult time for both you and them. It is also a time of excitement and high expectations. However, the majority of buyers and sellers are inexperienced when it comes to sales. And even the experienced may have different ideas about the process.

Explain the process and what happens next. Consider different ways of delivering this content. Perhaps a combination of video, email, eBook or short well-timed tips. Key things to cover include what they need to do and the importance of timing. What are the key stages and what do they mean.

What are your roles, their solicitor’s roles and importantly their roles in a successful sale? And if there is a chain throw in a follow up small email dealing with a chain, what to expect.

Conclusion

The key in all of these emails is to set the tone clearly around helping and educating. Be clear, be concise and always put yourself in their shoes when writing content. We think email should encourage your clients to talk to you and compliment your service not replace it. For further help with email marketing explore our email marketing software for estate agents.

And our final tip: make sure you measure the results so that you can improve over time.

So, what’s stopping you? Get out there and start writing some great helpful emails today.

We know at first it seems like a real effort. Start small and you can build up from there. If you have any questions or need help with automating your email marketing then please get in touch.

We would love to hear if you have any comments or alternative suggestions for the estate agent community. Please post them below.