Posts Tagged ‘Email Marketing’

Client Q & A – When to drop a lead from your email list?

Question
Will asks: “Do you have any statistical info on when it’s a good time to cut incubating leads loose?”

Answer
Our general rule of thumb is to NEVER take someone off your list. ex. I just closed a deal with a client that was put on our email list about 3 years ago. I hadn’t heard boo from them in 2.5 years and then, 6 months ago, I get a call saying that they’ve been getting our newsletter and they want to talk. The deal closed on Monday.

Think about this. Someone might have thought about buying 3 years ago and registered on your site to search for property. Instead they rented and stayed in the same rental for 4 years. Now, it’s time to buy again and they get an email from you. Your monthly newsletter just got you an active buyer client.

Here’s another thought – someone comes along and registers to search MLS but buys with a C21 agent because they walked into an open house and loved the place so put in an offer with the rookie who was staffing it on a Sunday morning. The C21 kid quit the industry last year because he couldn’t make a real living at the real estate game. Now, it’s time to sell because the family needs to upgrade since their second kid is on the way. Your email marketing piece arrives. They call you.

Fact is that everyone moves – I still get emails from Realtors and I bought my home 7 years go…

Boston Logic is Hiring a Marketing Associate

If you are a proven SEO with solid search engine marketing performance to back it up, we want to hire you. We are looking for a Search Engine Marketing Superstar to join our team.

Boston Logic is a fast growing company with clients throughout the country. Our culture has a fun, energetic feel, but we are intensely busy and maintain a professional, dedicated working environment. Our employees embody an entrepreneurial, independent, passionate nature and a work hard/play hard attitude. The desire to be a part of the development and success of a growing company is a requirement for this position.

OVERVIEW:

The Search Engine Marketing Specialist will work with clients and Boston Logic staff to manage and develop online marketing initiatives for our clients. These campaigns leverage a mix of marketing and technology strategy and implementation. The Search Engine Marketing Specialist will be responsible for the planning and execution of campaigns involving Search Engine Optimization, Pay Per Click management, and email marketing campaign design, implementation, and tracking. You will be expected to produce results.

QUALIFICATIONS:

Preferred skill set and experience:
* Hands on knowledge of search engine optimization best practices
* Demonstrated performance in achieving prominent search engine ranking for multiple websites
* Experience working and communicating directly with clients
* Results oriented online marketing experience and an understanding of analytics and performance tracking techniques
* Working knowledge of pay-per-click advertising systems including Adwords and Overture. Google Adwords Qualified is a plus!
* Understanding of search engine marketing strategy
* Experience with industry standard analytics packages and metrics
* Working knowledge of social media platforms and strategy
* Email marketing experience is a plus
* Strong writing skills are a requirement

You should have experience interacting with clients and effectively communicating with several parties to achieve results. You should have 2+ years of demonstrated success in an internet marketing role. Knowledge of search engine marketing, pay per click, email marketing, web analytics and market intelligence are must haves. The ideal candidate will not only have strong technical skills, but also demonstrate superior client interaction, communication, and time management capabilities. Experience in real estate is also helpful.

Interested candidates may submit their resume to: techjobs@bostonlogic.com

Blog Fear

Overcoming blogger’s block.

I’ve been working at Boston Logic now for 2 months, 2 days, 16 hours, and 57 minutes.  As an online marketer, blogging is a part of my job. I know I need to do it.  I know I can do it…but what should I write? There are over 171,476 words in the English language (I Googled it), and it feels like there is  no original combination left.Blog Fear

I know I’m not alone out there. There are real estate professionals all over saying, “yeah yeah I know I should start a  blog”‘ or “yeah yeah I know I need to blog more”, but what’s stopping us? We’re busy, we’re unsure, and maybe we’re afraid. I’m not talking Robert DeNiro on your houseboat fear, but maybe just fear of commitment.  Fear of needing to write something every week.

We talk a lot about WHY blogging is important for real estate online marketing and what to do to optimize our existing real estate blog.

But what about HOW? How do we get over that fear. My suggestion—let go.

Write from your phone when you’re on the bus. Write from Starbucks. Write whenever you’re thinking about something. This morning on the bus with my coffee I thought—gees why haven’t I blogged yet? And look…a blog post.

Write after you show a listing and talk about the questions asked. Write after you read an industry article that gets you thinking.

Don’t spend 2 months, 2 days, 16 hours, and 57 minutes worrying about HOW. Just do. Your keywords and links will find there way in if you write about what you know—your neighborhood,  your business, your industry.

We’re in this together, so let go and let me know what you think.

It’s not 1989 any more

Do you remember the world 20 years ago? No computers on desks at work. No email. No Internet. Forget about Google (started just 12 years ago) and social media was a gathering of newspaper reporters.  :O)

Please name for me 1 thing that you do in the same way that you did back in 1980. Just one thing that’s done in the same way. Something that hasn’t been affected by technology, made faster, or eliminated altogether? Is there anything at all that’s the same?

Do you communicate the same way you did back in 1989? The same phone? The same typewriter? Has your job been changed by technology? Of course it has. If it has not, you’re probably a painter. Even if you’re a painter, I’m sure the way you sell your painting has probably changed. Unless you’re that guy on the street corner selling your art, and I suspect, if you’re reading this post, that’s not you.

What about your marketing campaign, are you marketing the same way you were in 1989? If you said yes, then you need to wake up!

Best practices in real estate marketing have changed a lot. The unfortunate fact is that lots of real estate agents are marketing themselves and their services in the same way they always have. If the only significant affect of technology to your marketing has been the way you generate listing sheets, it’s time to get with it.

The really shocking thing is that there are lots of BIG real estate firms that still haven’t embraced the internet. They’re not leveraging SEO or PPC or social media. If they are, it’s a small percentage of their marketing budget.

Developers are some of the biggest culprits out there, or I should say, it’s the marketing firms that work with developers. These guys are spending a lot of money – I’m talking about hundred of thousands or often millions of dollars – on the same media and sales methods that they used in 1989. I invite you to look at the marketing budget for a development in your area. If you live in NYC or maybe LA, then this might not be as true, but just look at where they’re spending their money. What do you see?

Very often you’ll find large print media budgets in marquis local newspapers, the same papers who are dying because of drastically reduced circulation. You’ll find huge budgets on branding firms to design expensive brochures and folders filled with highly designed collateral. There will be special attention paid to press releases (ok, that’s a little better) and flowers for the model unit. Even with all of this spending, the real estate marketing firm that reps the place is probably still taking a full split.

If you find a website on that budget, you probably won’t find much online marketing to support it. An email marketing plan? A SEO retainer with a good SEO firm? A PPC ad buy? A CRM system? Is any of this on there and does that budget rival the print budget? I doubt it. Have they invested in a good CRM system for the sales center or model unit staff? Is technology going to help them sell the units in inventory any faster? If not then you know as well as I do that an opportunity is being missed.

OK, for you analysts out there, I know what your comment is going to be before I even ask. You want to know why a budget should be allocated. Or, maybe the question is not why there needs to be an online marketing budget, but is it actually a better investment? The answer is unequivocally yes. We’ve done the math for many projects and over many years. SEO, PPC, email marketing, social media, the online marketing 4 some, you might say, are by far more cost effective marketing investments for real estate marketing.

If, by chance, that budget you’re examining does have some online marketing on there and leads are, by chance, being associated with media buys or sources, do the math. Calculate the cost/lead and you’ll find that the online leads generated are costing half if not less than half of the leads from traditional media.

So, please ask yourself again. Am I using the same real estate marketing methods that I was 20 years ago? If you are, it’s time to innovate.

SEO is a mean, not an end

Are you proud of your ranking? Are you psyched that you’ve got so many Twitter followers? Do you have 1000 friends on Facebook?

Well, all of those are indeed reasons to celebrate, but not too much. It’s like the old saying goes: That, and a token, will get you a ride on the subway.

At the end of the day, there’s no revenue generated directly from being at the top of the SERPs. No one is paying you to be your Facebook friend and Twitter followers aren’t a revenue stream. These are all means to an end. The end goal, of course, is revenue.

Let’s examine this process. A user is out there on the web, they’re tweeting, let’s say, or they’re searching for a real estate agent on Google. The first goal is for them to find you and click to your site. Great. Step 1 is implete, you’ve generated traffic. users are clicking on your organic listings which rank high because of all that SEO you’ve invested in.

Now, the user arrives at your site. What do they find? Is your site engaging? Can they easily find what they’re looking for? Are they compelled to sign up and become a lead? We’ve written many times on this blog about the fact that SEO is a WASTE if your site isn’t any good. It’s true that we often have clients contact us for SEO services and we tell them that we’ll need to redesign their website before doing any SEO. Otherwise, they simply wouldn’t see any benefit from our SEO services. Some folks out there, some in real estate and some in other industries, think that SEO gets you clients. Well, it doesn’t.

SEO is a means, not an end.

So, let’s be optimistic. The user found you, they arrived at your site. They became engaged. They even signed up and converted from a user into a lead. What now? Does a lead = money in your pocket? No, a real estate buyer or seller lead is only worth cash when the deal closes.

That said, it’s easier to understand the value of a lead. The closer you get to the transaction and the smaller the numbers get, the easier it becomes to assign a dollar value to each unit. If in a 1 month period you generate 100 leads and sell even just 5 of them a home, and your monthly marketing budget is $2000 that means you’re spending $20/lead and your customer acquisition cost is $400/customer.

But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. We have search engine ranking producing website visitors. The visitors are converting into buyer and seller leads. Now we want deals. How do we maximize the conversion of those leads into deals. Here are two ways.

First, email marketing is essential. Lots of your leads will not come back to your site unless they’re prodded to do so. Send them nightly listing updates. Send them your newsletter. Email marketing is the best way to re-engage a lead. It’s also the best way to stay in touch with your past clients, a source of repeat business, referrals, and testimonials (which are great for SEO).

Second, your site needs to be a resource to the buyer. They’ll keep coming back, and therefore be more likely to convert into a deal, if they are engaged with the tools on your site. Your property search should be fully featured. A user should create an account and save favorite listings, save favorite searches, take notes, save and edit their listing update criteria, and communicate directly with you, right through the site.

To review:

  1. The user finds you on Google or Twitter or where ever
  2. They become engaged by your site’s design and functionality.
  3. Conversion from a user into a lead
  4. User returns to the site as their buying or selling resource.
  5. Conversion into a client signaled by a deal closing.

Remember, steps 1 through 4 are all means to an end. It’s like my football coach used to say, “you can celebrate when you cross the goal line.”

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