What’s The Best Digital Marketing Strategy For You?
In a recent interview, Agent Image co-founder and managing partner Jon Krabbe shared his insight into how agents can build their digital presence today. We also talked about the critical value of a personal brand and how best to communicate it online.
Does today’s agent even need a website?
Absolutely. Potential customers will first check your website, social media, and reviews of you online. Your website is often the first impression, and without it, your branding, marketing, and lead generation potential decreases. However, you need to decide what you want your website to look like. In my experience, when people turn to us to design their website, they are looking for either lead generation or brand awareness or a mix of both.
For those who want brand awareness, you want to show who you are, develop your expertise, and develop your online brand. For those looking for leads, try to answer the question of how can you market yourself to get the most conversions. These are the two main reasons for a web presence. To touch potential customers and either show them who you are or to create a funnel that you can use to generate leads. Both are important and necessary for your business development and your overall success.
We come to the aspect of the lead generation of a website. Suppose I’m an agent trying to generate leads. What should my website have? Should I have one website, should I have several? What is that direction?
A well-marked website is first and foremost essential. If your goal is lead generation, consider having a website for your brand and a separate lead generation website.
Here’s why: consumers look for homes first. You’re not necessarily looking for a broker. Hence, they feel comfortable and familiar with sites like Zillow, Redfin, and Realtor.com. Use this convenience to your advantage and create a website that looks similar to one of these websites.
My suggestion is to keep your photo and branding off your lead generation website. As a lone agent, your photo and contact information often put off the average consumer who may think that if they leave contact information, you will break the door tomorrow. Passive consumers want to browse the information anonymously. So if your website feels more like a community resource with listings and less like an agent site, they are more likely to prefer doing a search or signing up for property updates.
What if I am an agent with a higher profile in the market? Would I have a different marketing strategy?
Yes. If you are already known, you can also rely more on your brand for lead generation. For example, agents like Sally Forster Jones, Aaron Kirman, or Dolly Lenz have names with enough seals of approval and respect in the industry that it would make sense for them to leverage that familiarity.
From a PPC perspective, if someone is known from television or has a brand that is productive in a certain area, it can be beneficial to run a lead generation campaign with the brand front and the brand center. I would still do a branded or unbranded A / B test in this situation, but the rules here are definitely a little different.
But what if my goal is both lead generation and brand awareness?
If your goal is lead generation and brand awareness, there is a way to create a hybrid website using just your logo or just your company name and still focusing on the community.
I would put a logo in the header of a landing page showing properties to link the two together. Potential clients will still know it’s a real estate company, but the effect is far more subtle and you still generate more leads than a fully branded website with pictures of yourself. But in my experience, nothing produces more leads that quickly as an unbranded website.
Where should today’s agents focus so they can make the right decisions for their business?
You should decide what your goal is and find the marketing strategy that will get you there. You’re looking for either lead generation, brand awareness, or a mix of both. If the goal is lead generation, an unbranded website will get the best results. If brand awareness is your goal, build your website to represent you and the type of agent you are. If your goal is brand awareness AND lead generation, you will find that subtle mix of the two that will get your name known, yet still establish you as a community resource and drive traffic to you. First, know what you are looking for and base your plan on it so that you maximize your marketing dollars for the results you want.
Jon Krabbe is the co-founder and managing partner of Agent Image, the world’s leading real estate website design company. He started his agent career where he saw the need for unique branded websites and marketing in a multi-template industry. With over 20 years of industry experience, Jon has overseen the creation of over 20,000 websites and worked with top producers to develop award-winning designs. He found a way to combine his passion for real estate, branding and design into one service that helps real estate professionals from around the world grow their business and thrive.
Since 1999 Agent Image has specialized in branded websites and online marketing for real estate professionals. Agent Image is known for creating award-winning real estate websites for REALTORS®, brokers and agents and has launched over 20,000 websites for top producers across the country.