Email marketing continues to be one of the most successful marketing channels you can use to build an authentic connection with your clients. Email marketing for real estate can act as both a relationship-building tool and profit-building tool – allowing you to build on your client relationships by providing them with relevant and valuable information.
The success of email marketing in real estate
According to Hubspot, on average, email generates $36 for every dollar spent on it. When it comes to acquiring new clients, email is 40 times more effective than Facebook and Twitter combined for real estate agents. And where are these new clients coming from? The majority (53 per cent) of real estate companies get their subscribers from their website which means you’ll also need to make sure your website blog is up to scratch. Real estate businesses who blog get twice as much traffic from email as those who don’t.
Make sure you have a way to collect emails
The first thing you need to do is make sure you have a way to collect email addresses from your website. The simplest way is to have a “sign up to our newsletter” form, so people can give you their information to sign up to receive your regular updates.
A better way is to have some form of lead magnet. A lead magnet is a mechanism where people give you their details in exchange for something. That something could be a downloadable of some sort such as an ebook on getting the best price for their property. Another method that is gaining popularity is a free home valuation widget, where homeowners can get an instant valuation on their property by entering their address (and email of course).
You also need to make sure that you have a process in your office to ask anyone you interact with for their email address and a way to get those email addresses into your database. Having a QR code linked to your form is a great way to get information, as people can use their own device and autofill the details rather than having to type their details into your device at an open home for example.
Different information you can include in your email marketing for real estate
Less than 5% of your email database is thinking about buying or selling right now, but regular emails will keep you front of mind when your clients are ready to buy or sell. Not everyone will want the same information, so make sure you include a range of different topics. For example:
- Recent sales results
- Open for inspection
- Market report
- Educational blogs (from your website)
- Company news
- Suburb or local news
Producing and sending out different types of material will make sure you appeal to the widest range of potential customers in your database.
Use your own content
Like social media, the key to being successful is consistency. Make sure you plan your content up front (at least have the intention!) and send your email on a regular schedule. It’s tempting to grab content from just anywhere and put it in your email. But there is no point in creating an email that sends people away from your website to read other people’s content. The idea is to send everyone back to your website because that is where you control the narrative. That is where you can track engagement and interest in what you are sending out.
There are plenty of writers out there who can help you with content for your emails, or look at platforms like The Real Estate Voice that have a library of content you can use and tailor to your own needs.
If you haven’t sent an email broadcast for a while, it might be a good idea to check your database before you send it out for the first time again. If you send an email broadcast with too many bad emails (emails that are either malformed or are bouncing) then it can affect your ability to deliver emails effectively in the future. If possible, print out a list and give it a glance over and check it for obvious bad emails, or emails that could be really old. There are also services that can ‘clean’ your email list before you send it out. Finally, don’t send your best email (well content) on the first send if you haven’t sent for a while. send a few open for inspection or latest sales to gauge how receptive your email list is and give people a chance to unsubscribe if they want.
Speaking of which, make sure you are a good email citizen and include both your contact details (including a physical address) and a link so people can unsubscribe if they want to.
Personalise your emails
Even though you’re speaking to hundreds of people at a time, your emails should still be personalised. Personalised emails have a 26 per cent higher open rate, and an improved click-through rate of 14 per cent when compared to those that aren’t personalised. Some of the ways you can make your emails more personal include adding their first name in the subject line or greeting of the email, including region-specific information, sending content that is relevant and including a personal signature from you, not your company.
If you have a big database, then you should consider segmentation. Segmentation is basically grouping your contacts into categories, so you can send information that is relevant to that group. Examples of groups could be:
- First home buyers
- Home owners
Segmentation could be as easy as tagging your contacts so you know what they are interested in, but of course, over time those interests might change. A homeowner might become a downsizer or a renter is looking at becoming a first home buyer. But there are ways to identify these trends and some modern email systems such as Activepipe can help you track these and update your contacts into categories automatically as their interests change.
There are a few email metrics you need to know about, so you can see what type of content is resonating with your audience:
- Open rate – % of people that opened your email.
- Click rate – % of people that clicked on a link in your email – remember, you want to get people clicking through to your website
- Unsubscribe rate – % of people who unsubscribed
- Bounce rate – number of emails that bounced (people can change jobs, email providers etc)
There are some acceptable numbers for each of these which we will cover in a different article, but keep an eye on these to make sure they are staying steady or not going in the wrong direction.
As a marketer said to me just recently, just write something and start. Don’t worry if your emails are not perfect or don’t resonate straight away. Remember there is a range of different types of people in your database so every email is not going to hit the mark with everyone. Just try to send regularly and keep an eye on the metrics and people you have not heard from in a long time might just pick up the phone and ask you for an appraisal.