What’s hot in real estate marketing tools right now?

We run an updated version of this article about real estate marketing tools approximately 3 times each year – although we really mean brand new answer to this popular question.  It’s interesting, most of the agents and brokers we know would rather take a stick in the eye than actually learn how to use a new tool or get onboard the technology train and integrate it with their marketing.

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Everyone keeps sending postcards (calendars at the holidays), putting their faces on shopping carts, and just generally doing the same stuff that didn’t work all that well the last time we put together one of these compilations.

And then there’s the constant complaining about Zillow and all the imitation Zillows.  We’ve heard a few ugly rumbles about the latest iteration of Realtor.com and how that’s not really helping anyone either.

Here’s the current landscape, and our opinion on some of the options.

Old is new, still.

Some of the relative oldies are still drawing a crowd when it comes to marketing.

1 – Video marketing.

Nothing substitutes for a video walkthrough, unless it’s an actual walkthrough.  If you’re dealing with out of town buyers, technically savvy buyers, or millennials, you definitely need to provide a good video tour.

2 – Drone footage.

This follows in line with the first item on the list – if you’re going to produce a professional video, make sure to include aerial footage of the property, especially if you can highlight unique landscaping, hardscaping or other features in the terrain.

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Make sure that you have the video professionally edited – and be judicious in your choice of background music.  Something upbeat but not syrupy usually works best; of course if you have a dramatic property, you can lean to a bit more contrast in the music.

New is new, still.

Narration?  The jury is still out on this one.  So many people watch video without listening to the sound these days, it’s almost a waste of time to narrate.

3 – 3D and VR.

Eh, maybe not so much yet.  Real estate marketing will get there, but we can’t think of a bigger turn off for a potential buyer than to have “an incident” (you can read that as vomiting) during a bad VR trip.  3D often looks worse than 2D if the modeling isn’t done properly, skip it for now, the cost outweighs the benefits in nearly all cases.

4 – Bots.

Not familiar with chat bots?  You’re not alone.  Creating a chat bot is fairly simple and straightforward but deciding how and where to employ one can be tricky.  While it’s great to be a first mover, sometimes you have to wait until you know where to move before you put it in gear.

It’s all in the delivery.

No matter what you think of these mediums, you have to realize that at the end of the day it’s all in the delivery mechanism.  Sending out a postcard in the mail pretty much insures that not only will 98% of the people ignore it, you’re wasting resources because those things all hit the trash can.  Be kind to the trees!

Mobile is the most effective means of contact now.

2016 was named the “Year of Mobile” after the fact (which is really the only way these things should become fact), and mobile is by far the preferred method of initial contact and presentation for the majority of people.  Everything from email to search is predominantly being done on mobile these days.

What does this mean?

It means that you need to be sure that your website, your property listing websites, etc are all responsive and rated mobile friendly by Google.   Want to test your URL?  This is the link for the Google tester. 

You should also start focusing more on mobile marketing and engagement for your real estate marketing.  Everything from your business card to your notifications should be geared towards digital, especially towards mobile.  The response rate is so much better, the resources don’t go to waste if someone doesn’t want to look at your message, and it’s the modern way of getting people’s attention at the time and the place they need to see your message!

Mobilize the troops, there’s no time to waste!