Real estate marketing generally consists of two parts: listing and selling.

The age old dilemna for realtor marketing has always been the question of whether or not an agent would lean towards being a “listing agent” or a “selling agent”; over time it became de rigeur to be known as one or the other.

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Today we’re going to quickly look at realtor marketing from a historical perspective, and recognize the sheer amount of work that goes into listing or selling a house – it’s phenomenal, and without modern technology as we know it, things were tough for agents who had to complete their own paperwork, hire assistants and pay out of their own pockets and pretty much run a business within a business.

The original broker/agent relationship was also a bit skewed in the past – brokers got listings, sellers sold houses.  While it was not always the case, in many parts of the country or housing price levels, it was a prevalent situation.  And it was hard for real estate agents who weren’t brokers to get good listings.  The “team” approach has done a lot in the evolution of the business, but we believe that technology is really the driving force behind the changing dynamics in both listings and sales.

Realtor marketing has changed significantly in the past decade.

The advent of Zillow, Redfin and other online research sources has moved the ability to gauge the market out of the exclusive domain of real estate professionals, and has put it squarely into the hands of the general population.

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Traditionally, and with good reason, it’s been harder to get a listing than to sell a property.  After all, many agents can show the property to a wide variety of clients and prospects, but only one agent or broker can list a property.

Brokers, agents and realtors need to pay close attention to all the changes in technology.  When coupled with the team approach to real estate sales, it’s much easier to be a listing and a selling agent.  Using the correct technology can actually help to integrate the two parts into a seamless whole; we generally find that prospective sellers AND buyers appreciate the merging of the two parts into a single, more streamlined process.

After all, if you’re listing a property for a family that is making a local move, wouldn’t you also want to be their buyers’ agent? And if you’ve helped a purchaser in the past who decides to sell, don’t you want to get the listing?  Being all things to a lot of people is much harder, but that’s one of the advantages that technology brings to the table.

Take the long game approach and bring in more referrals as well.

Becoming known for successfully managing both sides of the transaction has the potential to increase your pool of transactors, by a lot.  Handling a sale and a purchase – perhaps concurrently – allows you to be in the middle of everything, and provides a clear path for buyers and sellers to follow when deciding what their next move should be in the process.

It also saves duplication of services – for instance, the listing broker recommends “company X” for move out services, but the buying agent says “no, use company Y instead”, creating a conflict for the client, at a terrible stressful time.  Obviously if the seller is leaving the area, it’s impossible for the listing agent to also act as the buyers agent in the next transaction, but that doesn’t mean the seller won’t refer friends, family, co-workers and neighbors to the listing agent.

Provide added value in your service to the seller in order to get the listing.

Successful realtor marketing is all about the perception of service to the client, and of future service to referrals.  One of the most effective ways to do this is to take advantage of new technology.  It’s great to send out postcards with a property listing pictured on the front, but the efficacy of that technique when compared to using online marketing methods is definitely lacking.

Our top suggestions for online realtor marketing for listing agents:

  • Single property webpage – not only does this garner attention, it also offers an opportunity for the seller to help with marketing coverage via their own shares of the URL
  • Virtual tour – a well edited and produced video can be a thing of beauty.  Don’t forget that people still enjoy photos, so make sure you spend as much time having the stills color corrected and cropped as you do getting the video produced
  • Mobile wallet property listing pass – the gift that keeps on giving.  Well executed mobile marketing campaigns help you to grow your prospect base, add more narrow targeting opportunities and demonstrate to your prospective sellers that you are ahead of the curve when it comes to technology
  • Lock screen notifications, combined with email blasts – not only is lock screen notification WAY more effective than email, it costs nothing when compared to SMS messaging, and the ROI is nothing short of incredible.  Use the native lock screen notifications on mobile wallet marketing campaigns or stand alone apps in conjunction with geofencing and proximity (iBeacon) notifications for maximum exposure and interest
  • Social media marketing – the latest changes to Facebook’s algorithm make it harder to get good results without spending a lot more CPL, which is bad for realtor marketing.  Taking advantage of Pinterest, Instagram and perhaps even Tumblr offers the chance to spend less for better results.
  • Zillow/Redfin/etc advertising – you know you hate them, we know you hate them, in case you’re wondering we also hate them, but they aren’t going anywhere and you have to learn to play ball in their court.  Otherwise your competition will eat your breakfast and your lunch.


Realtor marketing is tough, extremely competitive and super difficult to excel at in terms of making a strong living.  Using every available piece of technology to make life easier is mission critical to long term success.