Selling a Home in the Winter [Infographic]

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The winter can really take a toll on businesses, especially in real estate. Surprisingly there are consumers that actually prefer buying a home in the winter. In this infographic we provide tips on selling a home in the winter, so your business doesn’t freeze.

Winter listing2 2 Selling a Home in the Winter [Infographic]

 

Why Consumers Choose to Buy in the Winter

20% say there’s less competition between buyers.

24% say they are unable to buy in the spring/summer.

24% say home prices are better in the winter.

26% are more motivated to see in the winter.

Tips

  • Clear snow away from driveway, front walk and porches/patios
  • Open windows and air out the home a week before the showing.
  • Create a warm and cozy ambiance
  • Make sure the home is well lit
  • Add some holiday decorations.

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.blog.househuntnetwork.com/selling-a-home-in-the-winter/

A Closer Look at Marketing Success Rates

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In a recent National Association of Realtors study, home buyers and sellers were surveyed on how they found their real estate agent. The results can certainly give a strong sense of what works well and what does not, in terms of real estate agent marketing efforts. In the wake of these results, however, many Realtors are quick to write off some significant aspects of their budget. Here’s a closer look at marketing success rates so that you can budget accordingly and not waste valuable resource.

First, here are the results from the NAR study-

generational trends report 1 A Closer Look at Marketing Success Rates generational trends report 2 A Closer Look at Marketing Success Rates

So with this data in mind, are you wasting your marketing budget on ineffective services?

Where Does That Leave Digital?

If you skim the headlines of people looking at these new statistics, you’ll see a lot of major names claiming that digital marketing is futile. Inman News is one of these sources. However, upon further investigation, you’ll realize that such an analysis is really for the sake of a jarring headline. Inman News even made a follow up to their survey analysis to clarify that Internet business has a lot of benefits that can’t translate into such a two dimensional study.

First, let’s look at the role digital marketing plays in the survey results. Approximately 10% of clients found their agent through digital marketing – whether it be an online presence, social media, SEO, or so on. Over 5 million homes were sold in 2013, with similar figures expected for 2014. So even though 10% may seem like a low stat compared to some other methods, that accounts for 500,000 homes. Half a million customers will find you through Internet means. The agents writing off the significance of digital marketing right now are simply handing you that business!

Furthermore, digital marketing does more than just buy you some clients. You don’t develop a website and SEO just to sell your name, but to sell your actual houses. When 90% of buyers start their home search online, your digital marketing will sell homes even if it doesn’t sell you as an agent. And guess what? You get a commission check either way!

 

What About Referrals?

For buyers, 50% of customers find their agent via some form of a referral. For sellers, 46%.

If you want to make sure you’re part of the half that retains their business and gets referred to friends and family, you need to invest in staying at the forefront of past clients’ minds.

The best way to ensure referrals and repeat customers is to provide a quality service for each and every customer.

Another way to use your marketing dollars for referral business is to offer incentives. Let clients know that if they refer you as an agent, you’ll reward both parties with $100 gift cards to their favorite restaurant. Offer discounted rates or services to your most loyal customers. The list goes on and on of ways you can put your money where your mouth is in terms of retaining your favorite customers!

Beyond that, however, there have to be other ways to ensure success in this arena. The simplest method to “buy referrals” is to stay in touch with former clients. Send birthday cards and holiday greetings. Follow up occasionally with how their new house is treating them. If you stay at the forefront of their minds, they’ll be sure to refer you when a friend or loved one is on the market for a home.

Services like TIM (Total Internet Marketing) – available through HouseHunt.com – do just that. TIM helps keep a database of all prospects and customer’s personal information so that you can maintain communication accordingly. TIM offers greeting cards that you can personalize for just about every holiday or special occasion. All of these elements build your referral business.

Conclusion

Every aspect of how you spend your marketing dollars is important. Just because one form brings you immediate closings doesn’t mean that the others are ineffective. You may have to discern where exactly each of your customers are coming from, and where money is being wasted. It’s important, however, to calculate all aspects of your advertising strategy and not cut something just because it’s not as effective as something else.

It could take just one customer to change the course of your business forever. You don’t want to miss out on that customer just because a certain field didn’t generate enough immediate turnaround.


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Permanent link to this article: http://www.blog.househuntnetwork.com/marketing-success/

Guest Blogging for Real Estate Professionals

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guest blogging Guest Blogging for Real Estate Professionals

There has been a lot of controversy around this topic since Matt Cutts – head of Google’s Webspam team – called out guest posting as a spammy link building tactic. Many people are afraid to guest post or have guest posters on their site because they don’t want to get penalized by Google. The key point to remember here is that, Matt Cutt wants to get rid of spammy guest posting, not high quality guest posting.

What’s the Difference?

You can start with the domain authority you’re guest posting for. If it’s a low ranking domain or has a bad backlink profile consisting of spammy directories, out of country domains and low quality content which you can check with a tool like an open site explorer, then you can assume Google probably sees it as a bad idea.

Check the Content

Be sure to check the type of content the site you’re linking to has as well. In the past 300 word posts were ok but, now Google has up’d the anty and said they want high quality 500 word minimum posts. Our belief with the minimum word count is to completely ignore it. Write about the topic you’ve chosen and make it as good as possible. When you focus on that alone, the posts always end up over 500 words and it’s not an issue. Great content has no specific word limit other than to solve the issue of the searcher which would be finding it.

Check to make sure the content is original. If accepting guest posts or doing guest posts on other websites be sure to check that the content is original and not duplicate content. See more on that here.

If you’re the one guest posting, make sure to include images, proper natural links, and any other sort of media that makes your content quality. This makes your post look better to Google and has a direct relationship to your brand. To get any benefits from your article, you’re going need to leave a positive impression on the reader.

Stick within Your Industry

The search crawlers are getting better at identifying what industry you’re in and they want you be an expert in that industry. Every piece of content, every link and action you do should be related to that industry. If you have an astronaut guest post about space on your blog which has content like expired listing letters, it doesn’t really make any sense why that blog would be talking about both of those topics. This is actually a good thing though because specialized websites that focus on a single industry are now actually being rewarded.

Do It for the Right Reasons

The key to doing guest posting right is to do it for the right reasons. SEO is a side benefit of high quality guest posts but, straight from Matt Cutt’s mouth here are the main reasons to guest post in 2014:

“There are still many good reasons to do some guest blogging (exposure, branding, increased reach, community, etc.). Those reasons existed way before Google and they’ll continue into the future. And there are absolutely some fantastic, high-quality guest bloggers out there. I changed the title of this post to make it more clear that I’m talking about guest blogging for search engine optimization (SEO) purposes.” - Matt Cutts

One of the best reasons to do guest posting is not for SEO, but to gain traffic and build a new audience. When you get to put your content in front of someone elses audience you’re exposing your brand into new places. This is a great strategy to drive new targeted relevant traffic to your website that you didn’t have before. If you go into Google Analtyics right now, how many referring domains sending you traffic do you have? Focusing on this single metric alone is a great way to build your own audience by helping other people satisfy theirs.

Great Places to Guest Post

Being in the real estate niche is harder than most because online it’s nowhere near as big as some of the other industries but, there are still a few places that are highly respected and have great blogs that you can be a part of:

FlyerCo Real Estate Marketing Blog

HouseHunt Agent Blog (here)

Bigger Pockets

Inman

Final Thoughts

Guest posting is an invaluable tool if you do it right. If you could only focus on a single metric to increase traffic to your website, it should be referring domains driving traffic to your website and guest blogging is the #1 way to do that.


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Permanent link to this article: http://www.blog.househuntnetwork.com/guest-blogging-for-real-estate-professionals/

6 Mistakes to Avoid When Blogging [Infographic]

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Blogging is very essential in real estate, but many agents make the same common mistakes. Here are a few that you should avoid when blogging.

blogging2 6 Mistakes to Avoid When Blogging [Infographic]

 

6 Mistakes to Avoid When Blogging

1. Shhh… Don’t blog about your client’s private information.

Tip: Avoid mentioning client’s name or specific business transactions.

2. Bite Your Tongue-: Never trash talk  your competitors. Stay professional.

Tip: Make strong points without discrediting another business.

3. Don’t forget: Always share your blogs on different social media platforms.

Tip: Be consistent. For steady growth, post once a day.

4. Stay Humble: Don’t brag about how much money you make. Stay focused on real estate.

Tip: Write about the market, moving, mortgage rates, etc.

5. Keep it polished: Formatting is key. Your blog needs to be clean and appealing.

Tip: Add headlines, bullet points, images, and avoid long paragraphs.

6. Stealing: Don’t copy content from other blogs.

Tip: Produce original content, this will boost your SEO.

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.blog.househuntnetwork.com/6-mistakes-avoid-when-blogging/

7 Creative Holiday Season Marketing Ideas

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The end of the year is a relentless slew of holidays. The end of the year also happens to be a pretty slow time for real estate. With all the commotion of the season and the cyclical dip in income, it may seem a strange time to ramp up your marketing efforts, but that’s actually exactly what you need to do.

The last three months of the prior year are when a real estate agent establishes momentum through name recognition-based activities that will carry him/her through the following calendar year.

It’s true market activity slows during the holidays. But by the second week of January, the market usually explodes back to the level that will last until the bustling summer months. If you’re not working hard at marketing right now, you’re losing market value for the inevitable boom when buyers and sellers soon start thinking again about real estate.

To help make sure your next year is a success, here are some holiday season marketing ideas as we round out 2014!

Creative Year End Holiday Marketing Ideas 7 Creative Holiday Season Marketing Ideas

Halloween

Host a Costume Contest on Your Website – This is a great idea that builds community, establishes name recognition, and drives traffic to your site/blog. Distribute flyers/postcards to your targeted neighborhoods advertising a kids’ costume contest. Have parents submit their children in their trick-or-treat gear and you announce the winner on November 1st. Prize ideas include holiday gift baskets, gift cards, a Thanksgiving turkey, or some kind of home service. Remember, the quality of the prize will drive the quantity of participants.

Maximize Your Ads – For any old school marketing tactic involving flyers or postcards (including the idea above), you should maximize the space on your distributed material. Don’t just advertise your name and website. Also include curb appeal strategies (don’t want to look like a haunted house!), ways to prep the home for winter, etc. Just like your blog should be filled with useful content marketing, your hardcopy marketing should be useful, too!

For more Halloween themed marketing ideas, click here.

 

Thanksgiving

Host a Canned Food Drive – Being an active participant in your community isn’t just about fun activities; it’s also about helping out all aspects of the town. A food drive for the needy is a great way to good around the holidays and boost your public perception as a community participant. You can even offer prizes to the biggest donator to help generate buzz. When you deliver the goods, share the experience on social media.

Give Away Pumpkin Pies – Email or mail past clients and major community players that you would like to provide their Thanksgiving dessert. No strings attached; you just want to thank them for their business/friendship. Have them register for the free treat on your website. This will generate buzz around your name and drive traffic to your website. Even if none of your past clients/associates are about to be on the market, it will ensure that you’re their default referral for friends and family.

For more Thanksgiving themed marketing ideas, click here.

 

Christmas

Decorate Your Real Estate Contest – This is a fun contest idea similar to the costume contest from Halloween. Offer a prize to the best decorated home in your neighborhood. This will make your streets look fun and festive while getting people talking about your name/company.

Decorate Your Office – People drive by your broker office every day. Do something to make them smile and draw attention. One day you can have a giant inflatable Santa and the next have giant, wrapped presents. If you have a sign where you can change the lettering, include holiday puns, a countdown to Christmas, or Scripture verses.

For more Christmas themed marketing ideas, click here.

 

New Year’s Eve

Focus on Goals – Everyone around this time of year is thinking of ways to make the next year better. Help people out by sending a postcard of tips to keep New Year’s resolutions. If they’re thinking about a profitable 2015 and see your logo, you’ll be the first to get a call when they’re ready for their goal home.

For more New Year’s themed marketing ideas, click here


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