What’s on tap with new real estate marketing tools for 2017?

If you’re a realtor, broker or real estate agent, you’re likely trying to figure out what new real estate marketing tools you should investigate in the first half of the year.  With interest rates apparently on the rise, and a general feeling of “wait and see”, it may be harder to get home deals closed in the coming months than it has been in the past.

[LISTEN: Mobile Apps vs Mobile Wallet Ads – Part 2 – PODCAST EPISODE]

(And yes, I know it’s been a PIA with TRID etc to close on properties in the past several months, we closed in late September)

It’s probably a pretty safe bet to say that smart agents and brokers will be looking at every opportunity to drive more prospects to their properties.  We’re seeing any number of brokerages pushing their ‘in house’ listings – basically a database of listings that haven’t been released to MLS yet, but are floating around in the brokers office.

While this is a decent strategy, the recent California Supreme Court ruling about dual agencies owing fiduciary loyalty to the seller could put a damper on this option.  Obviously Realtor.com, Zillow, etc aren’t in favor of this type of marketing either, since it cuts them out of the game, at least initially.

We also see that brokers might be worried about portals, new models like Opendoor or Compass, and the like.  We tend to agree with Andrew Flachner at Inman that these aren’t life threatening issues, but they can be bothersome.

The big thing in real estate marketing tools is going to be mobile.

Seriously, it’s practically impossible for it NOT to be mobile.  People are using mobile for more than half of their online time, and that figure is growing as I type.  The millennial demographic, the ones that haven’t bought a home yet, are pretty much only doing internet on mobile; older generations are becoming more proficient using mobile as well.

Mobile is not just a delivery method, it’s also a means to an end.  Using mobile, you can target prospects when they are in places that could mean they are more amenable to hearing your message.  For instance, if Jane Doe happens to be standing in the upstairs furniture display at IKEA, that could very well mean that she’s thinking about buying new furniture for her new home.

Using location and proximity to target with mobile should be a no brainer in your real estate agent marketing tools kit.

There is geo-fencing, also known as geocaching; this is a wide area network (relatively) and works by using the location hardware in the phone to trigger messages to prospective sellers or buyers.

Then there are iBeacons – tiny transmitters that cover a much smaller area (think indoors with beacons and around the block with geofencing); using a combination of the two – at an open house, for instance – is an opportunity to really make an impact with the prospect.

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You have more options with mobile than you do with desktop.

You can use mobile, especially mobile wallet passes, to drive your traffic to each piece of content that you’ve produced.  Have a virtual tour?  Include a link and send a lock screen update to let everyone know about it.

Running a social media campaign, created a single property website, providing drone video of the property?

Each of these items can be linked and featured on mobile – it’s super easy and takes almost no time to do it.

property listing mobile wallet pass front

This is the front of the mobile wallet card.  Pretty simple to design – you leverage your existing collateral to create a user friendly front with a single property image.

Property Listing Pass Phone Dialer

And here’s the back – include one tap click to call or email links.  Add Maps with driving directions to the properties.  Include links to all of your other collateral, and give prospects the full picture.

Did we mention that sellers love to see this?  It’s a great differentiator in a world full of same!

We’re not telling you to skip adding your listings to Zillow or Realtor.com – that would be foolish, and you would be sorry (most likely).  Regardless of your personal feelings about either of those sites, they both generate massive amounts of traffic for properties.   Here’s a (mobile) screenshot below showing how many views Zillow can bring to a property in a very short time.

real estate agent marketing tools zillow traffic

As an agent or broker, it’s your duty to your clients to use every possible tool to either help them sell a property quickly for a good price, or to help them buy a property at a fair price.  Why would you cut yourself out of the chance to work towards both with one simple setup?

If you need help developing your mobile strategy, understanding how mobile wallet ads work, or even figuring out how to use Zillow to your best advantage, we’re always around – at least on mobile!