What’s the value behind an effective marketing strategy for real estate and business? What does it look like?

 

Every realtor and business owner is also a marketer. Whether or not you know how to tweet or how to design a business card, you’re always working hard to find your audience and match them with the right home or product. You’re a natural marketer because your investment in success is personal.

 

However, just because the desire is there doesn’t mean you know how best to direct your energy, time, and resources toward the result you need. An effective marketing strategy gives you a set of goals (sets your “destination”) and draws you a map for getting there.

If you’re an independent financial broker or agent, you know how important it is to find the right connections. Personal networks and word-of-mouth are effective, but to build that client base, it involves more than phone calls and business cards.

A website and an active, meaningful social media presence increase your ability to seek clients and build relationships by casting your net wider. Over time you may use digital tools for email campaigns, an e-store, reporting, direct marketing, and search engine optimization. These all come down to the same basic goal: targeting and gaining the attention of the right audience.

This doesn’t mean you neglect traditional marketing methods.

What is cross media? You’ve probably heard a lot of buzz around this method of marketing for real estate, and for good reason.

Cross media creates and sustains multiple platforms for interaction. It is a combination of traditional and digital marketing methods, coordinated into a cohesive strategy. Print marketing, signage, and direct mail work together with social media, website, and all other digital design and content to attract prospects and increase commitment. It is an interlocking network of communication and influence.

How exactly does cross media translate into success for real estate? Let’s look at how it works.

Customers don’t just want what you offer. They want to believe in your business. They want to be brand ambassadors. This comes from a basic human desire to be connected to something bigger than ourselves and share that experience with others. One of the best things business leaders can do is use this to their advantage. \

What is a brand ambassador?

A brand ambassador is a customer who shows a high level of loyalty to your brand. One of your best forms of advertising is to nurture brand ambassadors. With all our digital advances in the 21st century, personal relationships and word-of-mouth are still the indispensable cornerstones for business growth.

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Why Brand Authenticity Is So Important for Your Employees | Range, a Deluxe company

You know the old saying about leading a horse to water? Brand is similar. No matter how solid your brand, how promising or well-developed, it is not something that can be pushed on employees.

You can work for a brand you don’t love, but to put your heart into the endeavor, you need to be genuinely attracted to it. As some of your most powerful brand ambassadors, employees have to be sold on your brand, and that doesn’t come by tricks and gimmicks. It comes by forging a bond between your brand and your actual, live company culture.

A common misperception about marketing is that anyone can do it. All you need is a website, a few devices, and some creative minds, and surely you’ll be able to come up with a plan that works.

What many people find, however, is that once you’re deep into the marketing pool, it’s all too easy to flounder. In your own areas of expertise, you are skilled, sharp, and intuitive, but there’s not necessarily a direct translation into marketing, just as a professional basketball player is not necessarily a swimmer. The rules of marketing are specific, constantly in flux, and it’s difficult to know how to engage and connect a multitude of channels by making your best guess. In other words, swimming in these waters is about more than creative energy, instincts, and imitation. What you need is expertise.

You want to be the name that customers associate with a particular product or service. This phenomenon is known as brand recall. When a customer thinks of toothpaste and thinks “Colgate,” or when someone in a car accident remembers the number for a popular local attorney, that is brand recall at work. Companies want their brand to come to mind when customers are looking for a service or are ready to make a commitment.

Ever wondered if analytics are worth it?

The only way you can be sure of a worthy marketing investment is when it contributes more to the growth—and thus value—of your business than it removes from your budget. Some of these efforts are far easier to track than others. Campaigns that lead to direct sales and boost commitments can be quantified, and so you feel confident when preserving them as part of your marketing strategy.

Harder to justify are the more complex efforts that yield more indirect, but far-reaching, results. Analytics is one of these hard-to-quantify yet worthy investments.

What are demographic and psychographic profiles? And what can they do for your business?

If you don’t have a large budget to spend on marketing, you still have to compete for attention in a market with big business. But getting an audience’s attention is not only, or even primarily, about going big. It’s about strategy and matchmaking. You don’t need to get everyone. You need to find your customers.

Imagine hearing this from a new financial client:

“Make a long-term financial plan? No, it’s too much trouble. And confusing! And things are changing all the time in the market. Can’t you just invest in a few new places, freshen the portfolio up a bit, and we’ll call it even?”

This is not how any financial professional would wish a client to approach their finances. But this is how many in the financial sector approach marketing.

A long-term marketing strategy costs you time and resources. The field of marketing is always evolving, and it can feel confusing. However, like any other investment, you need your marketing investment to help you reach goals: revenue, new clients, longevity, and a unique voice in an increasingly vast consumer marketplace. Freshening up your brochures and your website, having a social media presence, staying active on LinkedIn—all of these are great moves, but in order for them to work, they have to be part of a strategy.

What does a marketing strategy bring to the table?

When it comes to promotional products, you’re dealing with professional adults. They may enjoy fun trinkets, but may not keep them around for long. And you need visual longevity to get the most out of your promotion. But summer is the ideal time for promotional products because you can blend fun with practical. Summer is the time to pull out the stops, while still providing high-quality products that are useful and show off your brand.
To reach your audience, you need to be doing both on- and offline marketing. Before you scratch your head, wondering, “Weren’t marketing experts just telling me to go digital?” listen to this: when it comes to media, people want a digital-tangible blend. That’s become clear in marketing and business alike. Omnichannel strategies are effective because they harness this reality.

So how can your business reap the benefits of omnichannel marketing? And how does it work?

Though keychains and mugs haven’t gone anywhere, long gone are the days when your choices for promotional items were so limited. From flash drives to selfie sticks to bamboo cutting boards, thousands of useful, whimsical, creative, or strategic items can be customized to help get your business get known, and help it to grow.

But how does that work? First, we’ll walk through why promo items are still strong marketing tools. Then we’ll show you how Range, a Deluxe company, can help you use them.

In marketing, so many more choices and channels are available than there were twenty or even ten years ago—it’s almost mind-boggling. The temptation might be to stick to your corner and avoid innovation or cross-media marketing at the risk of confusion or weakening the impact of what you already know works.

We’ve all heard some variation on the proverb about the three cords that the sage winds together saying, “Three together are stronger than each apart.” This ancient and oft-used proverb rings true in many aspects of life, as well as business. A cross-media campaign is like that three-strand cord. Each strand has a relationship with the others, and while it takes some work to wind them together, the strength they add is more than the sum of their parts.

Sometimes brand is hard to describe—not because it’s vague, but because it is incredibly specific. Brand is what you do, and it’s how you talk about what you do. Brand is your voice, your “My Name Is” nametag, the boiled-down summary of your identity and the way you express it. Brand is what makes you you when you walk into a very crowded industry marketplace to make a mark.

But that might not help if you’re in the middle of trying to build a brand. If you really want to get to the heart of branding, think of it as storytelling. Let’s walk through the elements of a story to compare it to the building of a solid brand.

Sending the right message about your company is similar to getting dressed for an important interview. The right message for you will depend on your identity—your vision and core values—as well as the practical services you aim to offer and to whom. You’re making an impression that’s aesthetically clear but also fulfills a practical purpose.

Messaging is also like your resumemost companies only get a moment’s glimpse for a potential client to decide whether they’re interested in more.

And prospects can’t get to know you if your message about who you are and what you offer is either untrue, unclear, or far too general. Potential clients need to quickly know whether you match their interests and can address their concerns.