REALTORS: Are You Winning?

REALTOR WEBSITES
With big players like Zillow and Trulia joining forces the competition in real estate has never been hotter. Combine that with the fact that there are more REALTORS and brokerages online than ever before and it can feel overwhelming just to keep up with what’s popular – much less what actually works.

With all the misinformation, hype, and down right myths going around the internet about the best practices of leveraging those tools even those with the motivation and determination to handle their own marketing strategies can feel lost. Worse still…some agents have all the tools, know how to use them, and still drop the ball.

The good news? It’s not a slope too slippery to climb back up.
Here are a few good tips to refocus your efforts and make the most of what you’re [hopefully] already doing online:

Tell Your Story
Don’t make your marketing just about selling. Yes, you need to showcase your listings and services, but be sure that you’re providing more value than just that. With everyone having a site, that in most cases all provide search functions and similar mls data, the things you share about yourself can be the defining difference in having a recognizable brand that stands out from the rest.

Do the Followup
With so much of a real estate agents long term business being return clients it’s shocking to learn that only bout 17% of them are rehired due to the fact that clients do not remember their agent’s name. Keep your contact close; followup at least a few times a year. It may seem trite but that “Don’t Forget to Set Your Clocks” email or card might be the thing that keeps your face fresh in people’s mind.

Go Real World
Despite being a tech company, and despite the fact that the internet drives so much of todays real estate industry, the face to face interactions you have may be where your biggest progress is made. Attend small business networking groups – or even create your own “Coffee With Your Realtor” events to make yourself visible and available to old clients and new. Don’t rely on technology alone to provide all of your potential leads.

These are broad brushes to pain the picture, so think about ways you can apply these ideas to what works for you. Ultimately it’s not following the trends that will lead to the greatest success but rather finding what resources will bring the most return to how you move real estate and also attract the right kind of clients for you.

Have questions about your real estate marketing?
We have plenty of answers and ideas to help!

Should You Start a Real Estate Team?

Real Estate Team

It’s not rocket science, it’s simple math: the sum of the parts are greater than the whole. This logic applies to real estate too! But, does that mean it’s a good idea to team up with other agents?

There are definite pro’s and con’s to consider, and real estate professionals who are just starting out or who are struggling to find enough hours in the day to get everything done will definitely find the idea tempting.

Reasons to consider forming a team include:
Having more clients than you can handle

Not having enough clients

Difficulty meeting deadlines

Just not enough time

A lack of important skills or experience

Advantages
Pooling talents and resources can lead to greater reach and exposure.

Working with others may allow you to free up more time for things…like eating. And that thing they call “sleep”.

It can be more impressive to clients to have a group of professionals working with them.

You can designate clients to the agents best suited to their personality.

In some cases team branding can save on marketing costs.

Disadvantages
It only takes one sour apple to ruin the bunch.

Too many cooks can spoil the meal.

Every link in the communication chain can be a potential point for miscommunication.

If things go South you could be left holding the expense of team branding.

So as you can see there are good things and bad things about teaming up. Overall the most important thing is to build your team correctly from the ground floor. Consider agents you have a good past repertoire with already. More often than not it is personal conflict coming into the business relationship that ends up turning a good team into a bad one.

If you’re ready to make the move and get your own real estate team started we are glad to help! Besides offering the best in individual agent and brokerage websites we can also create great team sites that will feature the listings of all your team members! Contact us today to find out more about how we can help your team get on the scoreboard!

MORE Than Just Another Website

benn

Working in the real estate technology industry for over the last decade we’ve seen it all. Fast talkers, smoke blowers, and deal breakers coming and going – imitating rather than innovating – making promises of unimaginable returns and then simply vanishing from the scene.

We’ve seen websites go from something hardly anyone had to being something no one in business should be without; we’ve seen a booming business spring up around that fact – web design.

Now, we realize you can toss a rock and hit 5 web designers in the head with one throw, but very few of them specialize in any one industry. When their client is a handyman, they become and expert on handymen. When their client is a window washer, they become the foremost window washing website maker around.

Us? We’ve specialized in real estate and have done so for over the last decade. We do what we do and we do it VERY well. But, what makes us stand apart?

For one, with most design houses you will get a website and a website alone.
Even if they offer a content management system (CMS) that system can many times be confusing or hard to use; if they don’t you are stuck trying to get a designer to make the changes you need.

Often you will have to use multiple companies to get the things accomplished that you need to do: a website company, a contact management company, a virtual tour company, a print marketing company.

Wouldn’t it be easier to get all those things in one place?
We think so too!

Every website from Tour Real Estate includes not only the front facing website that is your storefront to the world, but also comes bundled with a digital toolbox of comprehensive marketing tools.  We put the control in your hands; encourage our customers to use their website as the tool it was intended to be.

Whether it’s a simple single page website to showcase your latest listing, a development website for your featured community, or a full custom real estate brokerage design – we can do it all!

So before you talk to just another web designer come talk to us. We know real estate technology because we’ve helped build the industry!

REALTORS: Reasons Why Your Social Media Falls Flat

tools

Social media social media social media – boy it sure it a hot topic these days isn’t it?! Guru’s and mavens popping up left and right, all experts – as of this month – in the great unquantifiable thing that is the silver bullet to kill your marketing monster.

We apologize for all of them. Fact is though social media is one of the most cost effective ways for you to get the word out about your services – especially if you’re bold enough to take it on yourself. To help you towards your goals we’ve put together  a quick list of common mistakes for the medium; feel free to pass them along to your page manager, guru, samurai, jedi WHATEVER they call themselves as they are likely making the same mistakes.

Not having a goal.
It’s hard to hit the mark if you don’t even have a target. Make sure before you begin your journey in social networking, or hire a ‘professional’, that you have an actual goal in mind. Whether it be simply getting more visibility, getting more sales, or increasing traffic to your website. It’s a lot easier to know if you’re getting there if you have an idea where there is.

Not using social media.
Kind of mind blowing isn’t it?! But if you’re not actually USING the platform how can you expect it to DO anything? Go to the store, buy some eggs, take them home and put them on the counter – now sit there and stare them and berate them for not becoming an omelet. Let us know how that turns out – same thing in social media.

Not understanding likes don’t equal sales.
Visibility is GREAT! People liking your stuff makes you feel happy and fuzzy warm that you’re LIKED….but it doesn’t sell a single unit. And if you’re expecting it to, you may want to refocus your overall marketing plan. Social media advertising is NOT like the advertising agencies of old. Marketing here doesn’t always equal sales, but it can build the relationships that drive sales and improve customer service.

Not shutting up.
B-But…you…you said I needed to post a lot in one of those other blog entries! Actually, I said you need to post consistently; there is a difference, but that’s not the point to this item. The one most common mistake users of social media make is only talking about themselves or their product. People are hit with thousands of pieces of advertising every day. I can assure you not one single potential customer wakes up in the morning looking forward to being spammed or advertised to.

Be sure to diversify your content, don’t just make it about you or your product. Mix in other inspirational, humorous, or interesting information. Be absolutely certain you answer and interact with every single fan that takes THEIR time to engage with your digital presence. There are a billion faceless companies they can look up if they are wanting anything less.

Not being consistent.
Mentioned this above, so this point will be quick. Setting it and forgetting it only works if you’re using one of those rotating ovens. When you post consistently you not only can more easily target your audience but you also are creating momentum for better exposure.

Not focusing.
Trying to do it all is the best way to fail at everything. Pick the social media platforms that best fit your marketing plans and your ability to manage. There is no value to being on 100 social platforms if you are only actively updating two of them. Nothing is more embarrassing to a page owner or disappointing to a visitor than getting to a page or profile and seeing ” Last Updated June 2011″.

You guys are big meanies!
Well…I guess you might think that, but really we just want to help you build real success through social media. Nay-sayers and smoke blowers are killing the industry; many professionals are beginning to simply opt out of it all together. We think that’s a real missed opportunity! Have questions about social media, your real estate website, or how to best use them altogether? We’re glad to help!

REALTORS: Why Should Clients Choose You?

Realtor Websites

Ten years ago it was easy to get outstanding leads and search engine placement just by being online. The competition was low and in many cases the websites that were online weren’t much of a threat to your client base. Times have changed. There are literally millions of real estate websites online today, including big box companies like Zillow and Trulia. Today you must not only be online, but your website must be the very best in order to claim your share of this rapid paced market.

If there are millions of sites online where potential buyers can search for real estate why should pick your site? Why should they even give you a second click if you’re offering the same exact functionality as every single other agent out there? What makes the difference?

It’s simple. Quality.
Your website visitors may very well meet you for the first time through your website. Shouldn’t it present them with the best impression possible? Shouldn’t it be something more than a website in a can with the same searches, same layout, same everything as everyone elses?  YES. It SHOULD!

Here at Tour Real Estate Inc we are proud to offer some of the finest template real estate websites available that go way behind being just cookie cutter sites. Even our template sites offer you the ability to control your content, customize your website, and showcase your services.

A properly maintained website is frequently updated and relevant to your client base. It is more than a digital business card. To be most effective it must offer great information along with all of the usual expected tools your clients will want.

Want to REALLY stand out?
We offer some of the best custom designed REALTOR®, Idaho Builder, and Developer websites around. From simple stand alone lead capture sites to full custom and mobile responsive designs. All backed by an comprehensive set of marketing tools and outstanding customer service. We’d love the chance to talk about what makes you different than your competition; help you develop a vibrant online presence to support your goals for success this year!

Effective Realtor Marketing Tips

10tipsBygone are the days when simply having a website and being online was enough to guarantee you not only a good flow of traffic but also a valid source of leads.

If you build it, you have to TELL them about it, they will not simply arrive at your door. Field of Dreams was a great movie, but it makes for a terrible marketing plan.

With millions of  real estate websites online – including major global brands like Zillow and Trulia – all competing for the front page of Google you’ll need all the leverage you can get if you want to capture the lions share of this rapidly moving, technologically driven, industry.

Here are a few good tips to get you started:

ONLINE
Create an easy to use, highly search engine friendly website.

Start a blog – write relevant and interesting content; write frequently for best results.

Offer value and incentive to your visitors; give them a reason to visit your website – this will help to build your reputation as an authoritative source.

Leverage social media – create accounts for your business face on the popular social networks; use them frequently for optimal returns.

OFFLINE
Establish yourself as a brand people will recognize. A good way to get your visibility up is to participate or create in local fundraisers and events.

Use print and other media – believe it or not, print, radio, and tv can still get your services in front of a large audience.

Word of mouth is a valuable tool! Get friends, family, and past clients involved by encouraging them to refer others your way.

Work open houses. Yes, they can drive you insane by having to spend your weekend playing Angry Birds, but fact is: most often at open houses you are not going to be selling the home you’re sitting in, you will actually be selling your services!

Here’s a great little infographic from MyProperty.ph to illustrate these quick tips!
And in the meantime if you have any questions about how a real estate website can help promote your services, or anything about REALTOR® marketing in general we are always glad to talk shop!

5360737edb629d6600c871f73df4e5e4

REALTORS: Getting Online Doesn’t Have to be Difficult!

holding_keysSmallFor most real estate agents, the understanding that you need to be online in today’s technologically focused market is a no-brainer. It’s a fact of being in business, much like having business cards, or yellow page ads once were. There are plenty of options out there, and while it may be a little biased of an opinion, we think our system is among the very best –  especially for those looking to get online quickly and without a lot of hassle.

In most cases we can have one of our templated real estate websites up and running within 24 hours!

What’s more with a real estate website from Tour Real Estate you get more than a set it and forget it web presence! Our website system actually consists of two site – one that the outside world see’s and a second Client Toolbox site that puts you in control of your content! Just some of our standard features include:

Automatic MLS updates of your listings and every property on the MLS.

Multiple ways to search the MLS.

Create an number of custom pages.

Create unlimited links to showcase partners and area vendors.

Multiple points of lead capture.

Social media link display…and much more!

Whether you are an agent new to the market, or an old pro who needs to get with the times, we can help you get online! More than just websites in a can, we provide you with a ready made toolbox of resources to create a dynamic website for your clients. Contact us today – or visit us on any of our social portals to get connected!!