Digital marketing is both the present and the future. In a nutshell: it’s here … and it’s here to stay.
With platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Google ads, and text messaging, it’s easy to get your business seen by the world. But it’s also becoming more competitive.
That growing competition is why multichannel marketing remains so important, even in the digital age. Read on to find out what multichannel marketing is, how to use it as a Realtor, and what the future of marketing looks like.
What is multichannel marketing?
Multichannel marketing is combining traditional marketing platforms such as television and print ads with digital advertising to reach clients and sell your product or services.
What are some examples of multichannel marketing?
- Print: These are advertisements that are put into publications. While not nearly as widely read as they used to be thanks to the ease of the internet, this can include advertisements in magazines and newspapers.
- Direct Mail: This is another form of print on paper, but instead of being put into a newspaper, it’s sent directly to the home of a potential client through the postal service.
- Television or On Demand Networks: Ads that run on TV or digital screens promoting a product or service.
- Radio: This, like television, is straightforward. This is any ad that is put out on the radio, which has now expanded into the world of streaming on platforms such as Spotify and includes ads in podcasts.
- Billboard or Outdoor Advertising: Everyone knows a Realtor who has billboards or is on a bus stop bench. Some even wrap their car with their logo, headshots and contact information. This is a very direct form of marketing that is usually used in high traffic areas along highways and busier locations.
- Email: This example includes any email you send out to clients that promotes you. This can include articles, educational information, blogs, or upcoming open houses, etc.
- Social Media: This includes platforms such as Facebook and Instagram, where you can have a business page that promotes your services. You can also run paid ads that target your demographic of clients.
- Google: Google ads can be incredibly helpful to expand your network. This marketing includes paying for ads on Google. It can also include how your website, and social media business pages rank on Google due to SEO (SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization and uses keywords to rank you higher and have you “seen” more easily in the sea of the internet) and page views.
- Website: Your website may not be written to be an advertisement, but it is advertising who you are and what you have to offer. This will encompass your services, will have testimonials from clients, and will be one of the first ways people get to know you. It’s also a deciding factor in whether they choose to work with you.
Multichannel marketing, while simple in definition, does require strategy to be effective. Here are some of the best ways to create and implement a multichannel marketing strategy as a Realtor.
Learn your client and have an empathetic attitude: Multichannel marketing is most effective when you understand and learn who you’re marketing to. As a Realtor, you’re marketing to a home buyer or home seller. Your communications should focus on what’s important to them… not you. This requires a mix of facts, education, and insights.
It’s important to have your facts down, so you can answer any question a potential client may have, but it’s just as important to educate your clients in an empathetic way. Not just so they have the facts, but so they understand why things happen the way they do during the home buying or selling process. You’re not just an expert on real estate, you’re the person clients trust to be on their side. All of this can be conveyed in the way you market yourself.
Content creation: No matter what aspect of multichannel marketing you’re working on, it’s important that everything you put out be purposeful, meaningful, and streamlined. Let’s break each of these three points down a little further.
- Purposeful: When creating content, it’s important that it serves a purpose. Does the content give a good description of what you do and the services you provide? Is it apparent you are a Realtor, and you do your job well? Is your advertising easily recognizable as “yours”?
- Meaningful: The content you create as a Realtor must help sell your services, but it also must draw the client in to what sets you apart from your peers. When someone sees your content, will they feel endeared to you? Will they remember your ad because it felt personable, and client focused instead of sale focused?
- Streamlined: Your content needs to be able to work across all platforms. That doesn’t mean you can’t have different options but making sure it can translate easily from print to social media to radio is vital to growing your business and standing out from your competitors.
Remember referrals: While we want your multichannel marketing to be client focused, we also want to think about potential referrals. Perhaps someone on your mailing list has decided it’s not the right time to move, but if you’re catering your information to the client experience, they will send your emails onto friends who may be looking for a home.
While much of multichannel marketing trends tend to lean toward digital, most Realtors are surprised to find out that it’s actually direct mail that performs the best. Perhaps it’s because people become overwhelmed with the endless amounts of promotional emails they receive, but reports show that direct mail tends to feel more personal and digestible to many demographics including millennials.
What does this mean for the future of multichannel marketing?
Simply put, it means that opportunity is everywhere. We will continue to tell Realtors to learn as much as they can about digital marketing and to harness the tools that are out there to your advantage. Learn how analytics work and use them to track how you are measuring up against your peers. The internet isn’t going anywhere, and the world will continue to rely on it in more and more ways.
However, keep the tried-and-true methods of marketing alive and well, just with an updated twist. For example, depending on your current market perhaps you would usually do a radio ad. To update that into the digital world, make a place in your budget to have an ad on a streaming platform instead and see what it does for your network. Another example is if you normally send out a direct mail letter to a client list that sends them to your website, maybe you update that by having a monthly e-newsletter showcasing different seasonal activities in the area as well as home listings.
The future of multichannel marketing isn’t telling Realtors to get rid of things of the past. That’s the beauty of multichannel marketing! It integrates both the future and the past to give you and your clients many options to success.
At Churchill, we stay at the forefront of the digital age in mortgage lending, while remaining focused on the tradition of forming people-based relationships with clients instead of profit-based relationships. We don’t want to sell to clients, we want to offer safety and security as we help them achieve their American dream of homeownership. As you help your clients find their dream home, count on us to help them finance with ease. We’re here for them, and you!