Whether you have an established marketing team or working with limited resources, pinpointing an effective commercial real estate marketing plan can be confusing, especially in the digital age. When faced with an abundance of different marketing practices, it can be all too easy to fall into the trap of spreading your game plan thin and lose focus on those core goals. Being aware of key methods that when collectively combined impart the right message will help your property stand out from the crowd and outshine competitors, driving customers to a swift decision, and you towards maximising your profit potential. To plan these improvements download our marketing plan template that together with this article will guide you through the main components that should be considered when developing a strategy. It is available to download as an excel spreadsheet and can be tailored to suit your commercial property marketing efforts for good Real Estate entrepreneurs.
At the planning stage you should be asking the following questions:
– Who are you targeting and what do you need from them? It sounds obvious but prepare a detailed analysis of the individuals or companies you want to sell or lease to.
– What is your budget and how are you going to allocate for different marketing activities?
– Who are your competitors and how do they market themselves and their properties? What do they offer and how can you differentiate yourself from the pack?
At this point it is also an ideal moment to:
– Invest in high quality professional photographs or renderings that can be used across all online and offline marketing efforts. A fundamental step towards introducing your property to potential customers is through strong, visual and atmospheric imagery that brings the property to life and tells its unique story.
– Create an identity and brand for the property – establish a reputation by creating an original identity and logo for the property that targets your niche market.
– Define your key message(s) – what makes this property stand out from competitors? Crafting the value proposition with good copy will help set the foundation for your marketing communications and materials.
2. OFFLINE MARKETING PLAN
You know the saying – if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. It may appear like the world of online marketing has nudged traditional offline methods to one side, but despite constant advances in technology, online marketing for commercial real estate really is only half the story. Tried and tested offline marketing approaches are still the most successful way generate trust, familiarity and gain a personal association with possible investors and tenants.
Read on for our 5 key strategies for generating leads and referrals:
a.– Print collateral – invest in high-end print collateral such as a glossy brochure, flyers, research and other marketing materials that tell prospective customers the right story about your commercial real estate property. Where possible, ensure that the design can be adapted for digital use.
b.– Display and window signage – stand out from a multitude of other properties by reinforcing the brand and creating an eye-catching banner, monument sign or window graphic that visually showcases what the property has to offer in a nutshell.
c.– Broker events – stage a memorable networking event at the property that will enable you to connect directly with prospective customers and brokers within the environment of the product you are promoting.
d.– Print media – it always pays to build brand awareness and maintain a strong and active presence in major newspapers and industry specific magazines.
e.– Direct mail – mail can still be an effective way of getting property information into the hands of brokers, if done correctly. The key to success is access to a laser targeted list and investing in a direct mail piece that stands outs.
3. ONLINE MARKETING PLAN
With so many online marketing strategies out there it can be difficult to separate the wood from the trees when it comes to planning a rewarding online campaign. But establishing a highly visible online presence is vital. In this section we have put together a stellar online marketing formula for this competitive marketplace.
f.– Digital brochures – attention grabbing and creative digital brochures that can be sent via email are ideal for bridging the gap to a wider audience. Always make sure it’s available to download from the property’s website too.
g.– Website development – create and launch a custom-made website that allows users to find, view and interact with key information at the click of a button. With almost 80% of investors and tenants starting their search online, it’s imperative your website not only looks good, but also can be found. Websites need to be visual, informative and user-friendly for any device (desktop, tablet and mobile). Break up the text with special features such as downloadable floor plans, interactive stacking charts, high-resolution images, videos, and dynamic location maps to set your self apart from the competition.
h.– Website updates – keep the site regularly updated with relevant news about your company or property . You can add an engaging blog or news section where you can communicate with potential tenants, investors and brokers on a less formal level to give a human personality behind your brand. Provide useful insights on industry trends, highlight lease transactions, offer expert advice, news and other interesting company and property updates.
j.– Outreach marketing – attract potential tenants and investors by connecting with 3rd party journalists, industry influencers, analysts and bloggers that can produce effective press coverage and industry specific articles. Alternatively you can even contribute as a guest writer on real estate blogs and external websites, but be sure to include links that then transfer the reader over to a specific page of the property site.
k.– Email campaigns – to avoid your brokers alerts and emails being deleted before it’s even read, ensure the content speaks to the customer you specifically want to target. Include information about the property as well as relevant industry updates and be sure to link it back to your website and social media pages.
l.– Online press release – this trusty PR tool will allow you to stay ahead of the game and as it’s online it can be passed on and shared at the click of a button. Make sure it has something definitive to say and contains unique, newsworthy content. Include descriptive anchor links that when clicked on will take the reader to a chosen page of your property or company website you wish to highlight.
m.– Social Media – don’t underestimate the power of social media. Now a widely accepted commercial real estate marketing tool, sites such as Twitter and LinkedIn are used to demonstrate expertise and get the corporate message across in a more informal way, opening up discussions and allowing users to leave comments.
n.– Media placements – buying advertising space in relevant online magazines, business journals and news publications will make sure you are generating impressions in front of your target audience and help your property to ride high in google search engine results.
o.– Performance-based advertising – using cost-per-click (CPC) based campaigns through networks such as Google Adwords, LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook is a very effective way to deliver solid publicity through very targeted online marketing and can quickly generate thousands to millions of brand impressions. A major advantage of this type of advertising is the immediate and measurable results and its ability to give you more control over ROI.
4. MEASURING RESULTS
– Metrics – determine what are they key metrics that will measure success of your marketing campaign and find a way to track progress of your activities. 4 basic KPIs you may want to consider:
- Brand impressions (for Ad performance)
- Website visits (for online marketing campaigns)
- Clippings (for PR activities)
- Leads generated (for overall success)
– Reporting – reporting results of your marketing initiatives is the only way to measure success and make informed decisions to improve campaign performance. A good starting point is using Google Analytics, the most useful tool for measuring levels of online performance and conversions (or “leads”) and also gives you the ability to create custom reports and dashboards.
Creating a marketing plan and need some new real estate marketing ideas? That’s what we’re here for. We compiled a list of great advice on marketing and how to generate more real estate leads from leading real estate professionals. From virtual open houses to marketing for millennials, you’ll find information here to kick start your marketing campaign.
i. Best SEO Practices for Real Estate Featured Listings
By Steven Trice. What have you googled today? Every second there are over 40,000 search queries on Google, or 3.5 billion a day. A relative portion of these searches involves real estate — people typing in “homes for sale.” Now, when’s the last time you thought about making your featured listings Google-friendly, or better yet, SEO-friendly? This guide covers all the key basic SEO elements, which will help you generate more free traffic from search engines.
ii. Make a Viral Real Estate Video
By Vinny La Barbera. Viral videos are still all the rage. If you can capture someone’s attention with a funny or insightful clip, you can reach a wider audience through the power of social shares. Everyone loves sharing entertaining videos on Twitter, and with family. Even if the audience isn’t your target, they may send the video to someone who is.
iii. Generate More Leads with Text Message Marketing
A prospect notices a “for sale” sign in front of a beautiful home. Do they remember the agent’s name and look it up later, or write down the phone number and give it a call? What if, instead, there was a number they could text to immediately receive all the key info on your listing? In today’s increasingly-mobile real estate environment, many prospects prefer the 2nd option. This video from Tatango explains how you can use mobile marketing campaigns to drive more sales.
iv. Come Up With A Great Slogan
Real Estate Slogans teach your customer what to think about your business. They also give insight on the tone of your brand. Here we take a look at 25 great real estate slogans, and why they work.
v. Outrageous Real Estate Marketing Ideas That Actually Worked
In an industry as fiercely competitive as real estate, many agents struggle to differentiate themselves. If you don’t have seniority or an endless marketing budget, you often have to rely on a strong personality to get the word-of-mouth going. Well, these realtors took that about 10 steps further by dabbling in the absurd, or turning themselves into some completely outlandish characters. The most outrageous part of it, however, is how they actually worked.
vi. Build hype before it hits the market.
To enterprise on the market trends, we’re putting out coming soon signs and brochures about the properties weeks before they hit the market. This builds anticipation and interest because Buyers are out looking for any new home they can find in key areas. Once we list the home, we hold off of allowing showings for a few more days, to continue to build excitement.
vii. Create a blog that answers client’s questions.
My advice would be to create quality content around the questions of my potential clients. Am I experienced with new home buyers? If so, what questions do they usually have that I can answer through content on my site or blog? The same goes with clients that buyer homes often or are looking for a bigger home for their growing family! There will always be a question and the sooner you answer those questions, the quicker the client will trust you which will lead to a sale down the line.
viii. Grow your network with regular get togethers.
Besides advertising exclusives on Streeteasy.com, Trulia, and Zillow, and sending out monthly newsletters, my top strategy remains the personal touch. I host a monthly happy hour open bar in NYC and invite my top clients, their friends and families. It’s a great way to organically grow your network and I’ve gotten some of my best sales clients this way. I highly recommend it!
ix. Manage your online reputation
Every business encounters negative reviews online but it’s crucial to respond quickly but not to be reactive- give yourself time to breathe and think about the response. Realtors need to be sure to not lash out and go on the defensive, but to truly get to the root of the problem and understand why the client has had a bad experience. Respond to the review in a way to address not only the upset client, but also reassure other readers that the client’s experience isn’t routine. You want to take this chance to show that you care about your clients and that you care about their experiences.