3 Digital Marketing Tips for Property Professionals

Social Media Marketing

When it comes to selling or purchasing property, most estate agents and housing developers tend to lean towards traditional marketing – we’re talking about listings in the local newspaper and adverts in high street windows.

But in recent years, we’ve seen a huge uptick in the UK property market embracing the digital world, migrating away from the high street to the Internet as prospective buyers become even more tech-savvy and immersed in the world of social media.

To put it simply, the conventional way of marketing properties has come to an end. The fragmentation of marketing channels has meant that traditional channels, that were once very effective (TV, radio and print) are no longer resonating with audiences as they once were. The property marketing landscape has changed, and it’s vital that housebuilders, property developers and estate agents are up to speed with the current digital marketing trends.

Consumer behaviour has also changed, as buyers have become more proactive in the purchasing process. They are heading online to find what they are looking for, and in most cases, buyers will most likely be visiting multiple websites and comparing different options before making contact to get the next steps rolling.

Online property portals like Rightmove and Zoopla are increasing in popularity. In 2019, estate agency Yopa found that one in 10 eager house-hunters spend as much as five hours a week on these websites searching for their desired property. It’s an incredible statistic and highlights why property professionals should be increasing their online presence in order to place their properties in front of the right people.

The advantages of digital marketing are well documented – our blog is packed full of reasons why any business should consider a digital marketing strategy – but its main benefit is how affordable it is to access the mass market. This is particularly beneficial for smaller and independent homebuilders and family estate agents. Aside from being cost-effective and receiving a good ROI and ROAS, we have seen improved purchase rates for our property clients (but more on that later).

So, the moment you’ve all been waiting for. How can housing developers, homebuilders and estate agents improve their digital marketing strategy in 2021 and increase sales… take a look at our 3 tips below.

  1. Start with an SEO Strategy

SEO, or search engine optimisation, is a strategy used to increase website traffic by ensuring that the site can be easily found in search engines. After all, Google and other search engines’ main goal is to provide the user with the best possible results, and if they think that your site has what the user is looking for, it will bump your site up higher on the search results – this where a good SEO strategy can help.

Let’s say you’re a housing developer that’s building retirement bungalows for the over 60’s. When a person is searching for retirement properties, Google will rank your site (basically determine where it placed in their search results) based on whether your site provides content relevant to the user’s search.

The aim of SEO for property professionals is to improve your website ranking and get it as high as possible at the top of Google’s results.

There are a few ways to go about doing this. The first is to ensure that your website contains all the necessary keywords and phrases. In this case; retirement, bungalow, retirement property etc. It is very difficult to compete with portals such as Rightmove and Zoopla on high volume search terms, so we recommend looking at implementing longtail SEO techniques. This targets long-tail keywords, which are search terms that consist of three or more words. They have a lower search volume and competition rate, as well as a higher conversion rate than short-tail keywords (one or two words).

The second, and perhaps most important, is to obtain links from other reputable websites. Search engines will take into consideration links from authoritative sites as proof of credibility. Put simply, the more links your site has, the more keywords it has, the better chance you have of ranking higher in Google. An easy way to achieve this is to link back to specific pages on your website from your portal listings.

These aren’t the only steps you’ll need to take to improve your website’s ranking, but is a good place to start. Given the enormous amount of content that already exists on the internet, you need to do more than creating a website and hope that it will rank well.

A thorough and well-planned SEO strategy is a must for homebuilders. Get in touch with us to see how we can help you

2. Build a Social Media Presence

As mentioned already, consumer behaviour has changed and more people are now using social media on a regular basis than ever before. There are many property developers and estate agents out there using various social media channels, such as Instagram and the latest social media craze – Tik Tok, as part of their wider digital marketing strategy.

A strong social media presence allows property professionals to establish connections with potential buyers, showcase new listings and increase brand awareness and sales. Best of all, it’s free!

Our previous blog looks more in-depth at the different ways the property industry can utilise each different social media channel, check it out here.

3. Paid Content Strategy

So now that we’ve covered websites and social media, let’s combine the two and look at a paid content strategy. Whilst SEO and social media are essentially free, you can place budgets behind Google and social media channels to expand your content out to a wider audience that is searching for what you are offering.

One of the easiest and most effective ways to use paid advertising is to promote your page to your target market. Let’s say you’re an estate agent targeting first-time buyers in Essex, you could potentially target 190,000 people via Facebook. Encouraging people to like your page will expand the organic reach of your day-to-day posts, drive traffic to your website and potentially increase viewings.

On the other hand, let’s say you are a property developer that’s building retirement properties in the south-east of England, you could look at creating development specific pages. Again, a paid advertising campaign will increase your page likes/ fans whilst you’re in the building stages, then once all the properties are sold, you have an online community/ forum for the residents within that development. You can continue to share news about the local area and amenities nearby, allowing residents to feel like they have a place that’s dedicated to where they live. Using this example, there are 1.7 million people on Facebook that match the retirement age within the south-east location.

At Shareable, we are paid advertising experts and can help you with Social Media Ads and Google Ads, let’s chat about how we can help you.

Increasing Brand Awareness and Sales for Scott Properties: Case Study

We began working with Scott Properties in 2019, when they approached ahead of the launch of a new development of retirement bungalows. Using a paid social media advertising strategy and a good understanding of their target market, we were able to generate 1,261,648 impressions (the number of people who have seen their content) and 40,722 clicks to their website via Facebook and Instagram – which led to a fully sold-out development within a matter of months.

Without going into too much detail about their budget… let’s just say that the total amount they spent on paid advertising was around the same as a 5% deposit on one of their properties, so you can imagine the return on investment they received.

Final thoughts…

It’s important that the property industry recognises the change in the marketing landscape, that property developers – especially smaller and independent ones – invest in their website, their online presence and social media channels. By investing time into your own marketing channels, you will ensure that you’ve created a valuable asset for your business and one that you can expect many benefits from in the long run.

Where smaller, independent property developers have traditionally relied on estate agents to do ‘all the work’ in terms of bringing their properties to market, there is now a defined need to control how this is achieved and how this can bring marketing ‘longevity’. By controlling their digital marketing and bringing in partners like estate agents and marketing specialists, property developers can grow their businesses via these marketing activities.

If you’d like to chat more about any of the techniques discussed in this article, feel free to get in touch with us here.

Read More
Marketing for Renewable Technology Companies

Marketing for Renewable Technology Companies

The pressing climate crisis has made it clear that the focus of this generation of entrepreneurs is – and has to remain – on creating a more sustainable future. And, with the rollout of ambitious but necessary projects such as the European Green Deal and the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals, Renewable Technology Companies (RTC) are taking up the role of the knight in the shiny armour.

The renewable energy sector, which was a small niche in the global energy market only a few years ago, has gained so much traction and interest to lead the whole industry forward. This industry’s boom has undoubtedly opened up opportunities for entrepreneurs interested in making an impact in today’s world – but it has also made the competition much fiercer than it once was.

With giants of the renewable energy industry scattered worldwide, it has never been so important for companies to invest in strategic marketing. After all, the more people and businesses you can get involved with your company’s mission, the more of an impact you can hope to make. Here are the marketing strategies RTCs should not miss out on.

Why Invest in Marketing for Your RTC?

Global renewable energy is one of the fastest-growing markets worldwide, and its development is not only customer-driven. As governments are modifying legislations and embracing the shift towards more sustainable resources, it becomes apparent that renewable energy is not just a trend.

The renewable energy market is set to double its reach by 2024, achieving a global worth of $1 billion by 2025. This impressive growth is undoubtedly a sign that things are changing for the better across the world, but it also means that today’s RTCs are born in an ever so competitive landscape.

At the same time, digital environments from search engines to social media platforms such as LinkedIn are becoming increasingly noisier and crowded. So, the channels that have been working so far for companies and organisations might be so flooded with information to make it impossible for your audience to hear your voice.

A combination of these two factors has made it challenging for RTCs to stand out. However, with the right marketing strategy, you can tap into the undiscovered potential for this industry. Below, you can find 10 of the best marketing strategies that work – adapted to the renewable energy industry.

Define Your Offer and Brand Value

If you are an RTC, you are providing clean, sustainable, and renewable energy – or developing technologies that can make the renewable energy industry more sustainable, efficient, or appealing. That might be what your company does – but it is not your entire offer.

Defining your company’s offering is crucial when crafting a marketing strategy because, without a message to communicate, no communication channel will be effective.

When crafting your offer, don’t only focus on the products or services you are providing your audience. Instead, bring your attention to how you are providing these services – and what’s the value proposition of your company.

Your value proposition should include three elements:

How is your product or company relevant? – or, what problem is your audience experiencing? Don’t only focus on the fact that renewable energy is needed to heat up homes and the mindset shift of people looking to live a more sustainable life.

  • What is the quantifiable value you are delivering? – be clear on the specific and quantifiable benefits that your product or services offer to your audience. It might be your lower price, sustainably-sourced materials, or science-led research.
  • How are you different from the competition? – new RTCs are born continuously. It is important to know how your company differentiate itself from the competition. Identify your unique selling points!

Your value proposition should go hand-in-hand with your brand voice and personality. For example, if you bring to life an RTC that primarily focuses on delivering renewable technologies to startups or a young audience, make sure your tone is in line with this market. Remaining relevant to your targeted market means creating efficient products and keeping the conversation going.

Embrace a Whole Organisation Approach to Content Marketing

One of the greatest challenges of designing the right marketing strategy for the renewable technology industry is creating content. A content-rich marketing strategy is undoubtedly one of the ways to see your ROI skyrocket and your efforts become worthwhile.

As opposed to social media marketing, content marketing is the long-term strategy that will give your business authority and trust over time.

And, the more your audience and other businesses in the industry trust you, the more visibility, popularity, and respect your brand will see. At the same time, creating content for RTCs is not as easy as it might seem.

Indeed, the renewable technology industry is new, vibrant, and always in development. Aside from the highly-technical side of your business, your marketeers also have to be clued up about the most recent studies and research.

While the company’s founders, C-level employees, and managers need to know about innovations in the industry, the marketing team does not.
As a result, it is easy for your marketing strategy to be shallow or product-focused. To avoid this, there are two important techniques to employ simultaneously:

Embrace a Whole Organisation Approach – through this method, everyone in the company contributes their skills to content marketing, including your managers, founders, technicians, and engineers.

Use a specialised marketing company – if your marketing team’s lack of technical knowledge is the barrier between your company and a winning marketing campaign, outsourcing specialised services can help.

Communicate Your Story and Brand Values – Not Just Your Products

Of course, a marketing campaign’s ultimate aim is to increase sales. However, this is not a straight path – you won’t see your products or services selling out overnight just by advertising them on digital marketing channels!

Sales can come through popularity, trust, visibility and, above all, authenticity. In a historical moment where we are all overwhelmed with information, it is important to communicate what your company is really about to catch your audience’s attention.

Whether you are using SEO on your blog or social media channels such as Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter to communicate to your audience, make sure to make the story about you – not just what you sell.

Additionally, it is crucial to look into the buyer behaviour of a new generation of consumers. Today’s buyers are increasingly taking into consideration the values upheld by a company before committing to a purchase.

Since your RTC operates in the field of renewables, you are likely to be targeting an audience that is interested in cleaner, more sustainable energy sources. From this, find out what the entire set of values upheld by your target audience is. This will give your precious hints on the initiatives your company should take – and communicate through marketing!

Create Educational Content Around Keywords

The relationship between your RTC and your audience is not a one-way street. Keep in mind the Ben Franklin effect: offering something first might increase the chances of your audience engaging with your company. While giving away free services, demos, products, and trials might be a way to lure some in and get them to fall in love with your company, that’s not the only – or most efficient – way.

There is something else that you can give to your audience and without having to miss out on the revenue of the products that you would have given away for free. Content, in this case, is the key!

Using keywords as pinpoints, create educational content about renewable technology. As a company in the industry, you have access to insider knowledge. At the same time, industry professionals want to have that knowledge and be in the loop.

Through educational content, you can become a trusted and credible source of information in the industry, gaining the respect of your audience and competitors. More importantly, this kind of content will add value to your brand in the long-term.

Map Out A Buyer Journey

Due to the overcrowded digital environment, any potential buyer in your audience is continuously overwhelmed with information. So, not only the buyer journey is long, but it is also easy for your leads to be swayed away.
Mapping out a customer journey can help you gain better control over the sales funnel your leads go through – from the Awareness phase to the last step, Action. When creating this journey, it is important to be clear on what detail and information your leads are looking for at each stage of the journey.

For example, during the awareness stage, your leads might be looking for the information they need to know whether you can resolve their pain points. They might be looking for affordable renewable technology solutions or for a custom package that better first the need for a young startup. Make sure to understand who your buyer persona is before attempting to answer these questions.

Continue nurturing each of your leads by providing more and more about your company as they look into your values, services, and offers. Make sure each piece of information is readily available and easy to find.

For example, it might have captured the interest of a leader who was looking for renewable technology services thanks to an Instagram ad. If the swipe-up link leads to your website, make sure they can immediately find what services are you offering, the packages that are available, and what your company is about. At the next stage, make sure your core values and missions are easily discoverable – and ensure they can easily contact your company. Don’t forget to follow up with potential leads.

Host Digital Events

As we have seen, it is crucial for your company to be considered an authority and tested source of information in the industry. At the same time, tailored and more personalised interactions are always part of a winning strategy. Creating downloadable guides and eBook can be a great way for your audience to peek into the world of renewable technologies.
However, hosting webinars or live Q&A sessions is also a great way to transcend the digital channels and meet your audience.

And, of course, this gives you an opportunity to establish your company as a respectable and influential organisation in your community. Make sure you take part in as many relevant online events as possible.

Use Diverse Social Media To Create a Community

Social media channels are an incredibly powerful tool for RTCs. With an ever-increasing number of renewable technology companies filling up the market, social media gives you a significant opportunity to build a supportive community.

Of course, social media popularity is about likes, shares, follows, and retweets. However, these are not the end goals – but just an indicator of how communication with your audience is going.

Indeed, social media channels allow you to solidify the relationships between your brand and your consumers, turning their interest into sales.
Finding the right platform to tell your RTC’s story is a crucial step, which will mostly depend on your target market. Nonetheless, diversifying your channels of communication means that you can reach a wider audience while targeting a specific demographic through laser-focused ads.

Consider Influencer Marketing

Awareness – which is often the first step of the marketing funnel – starts from the information potential leads receive. And, in most cases, this happens through social media channels. Adds might cause your products and services to fall in front of the eyes of potential leads. However, influencer marketing can make it easier to reach an increased number of leads – and, more importantly, catch their attention.

To understand this, it is important to look into the consumer behaviour of this generation of buyers. Millennials, as well as Gen Z, are using the method of “crowdsourcing” throughout their decision-making process. This means that they value and trust the opinion of their peers and influential models – and use these opinions to make a purchasing decision. Using influencer marketing can help your brand become more visible, but also, you can create an association with a person or group of people already held in high esteem by your target market.

Of course, picking the right influencer is key! Specifically, RTCs could look into engaging with environmentalists, scientists, or individuals interested in making a positive impact on the environment.

The Takeaways

The landscape of renewable technologies is thriving but also becoming crowded and competitive. This is thanks to the opportunities that the general public’s interest and legislation changes have fuelled. When crafting an effective marketing strategy for your RTC, make sure you are using the consumer’s trends to your advantage. You can do so by:

  • Offering tailored services
  • Crafting a unique value proposition
  • Remaining consistent throughout each touchpoint
  • Engaging with your community
  • Leveraging the knowledge of the experts in our organisation
  • Thinking about your long-term and short-term marketing goals

Don’t forget to be the first one to offer something to your community – you can secure their respect and a better brand image by providing free educational content about renewable technologies.

Read More
Why a digital strategy is the ideal solution for property marketing in 2021

Digital strategy for property marketing in 2021

Marketing , Social Media Marketing

The UK property marketing, over the past decade, has gone through several ups and downs. These depend on a lot of factors such as interest rates, economic conditions, job growth and, last but not least, Brexit.

Now, with the stamp duty holiday on property up to £500,000 that will be extended until the end of June, we have at least three and half crucial months for the industry coming up. The Chancellor’s decision was generally welcomed by those within the industry. “This is exactly what the property market needs”, says Paresh Raja, CEO of Market Financial Solutions, for instance. There are, however, those who claim that “short-lived Stamp Duty holiday isn’t the solution” (words of Rob Clifford, CEO of Stonebridge Group). 

Over the past year there’s been a big increase in sales potential. People, indeed, want to make the most of the Stamp Duty Holiday. Whether first-time buyers,  movers or landlords looking to invest, they decided “now is the time”. The result was a lack of housing stock available which in turn pushed up property prices. As Nationwide’s December house price index reports, in fact, annual house price growth rose to a six year high at the end of 2020.

Taking advantage of such a particular time should be a priority for all property marketing players. But, in the meantime, preparation for the possible knock on effects should be made. 

According to the National Association of Realtors, 92% of buyers use the internet to begin their house hunting quest. Considering that, it becomes clear the vital need for property marketing players to have an active online presence and choose the right digital marketing strategy. 

COMBINE DIGITAL MARKETING WITH OTHER COMMUNICATION 

Focusing on search, social media, mobile, email and website have to be a priority for property marketing players. Moreover, these shoul be carefully planned and aligned with the core business activity.

But it’s important not to forget, where necessary, to combine these media with the traditional ones, such as print, direct email, radio, tv, face to face and PR. 

TAKE ADVANTAGE OF OWNED, EARNED & PAID MARKETING MODEL 

Organising the high number of channels you will have to magase by dividing the in owned, earned and paid may be a good idea.

  • Owned: website/blog, email subscribers, social media accounts, partners
  • Earned: reviews/testimonials/ratings, social media buzz/sharing, PR/media coverage, world of mouth
  • Paid: advertising online and offline, sponsorships, promotions, affiliates

TARGET SPECIFIC GROUPS OF BUYERS 

According to NAR / Google “Digital Hunt Survey”, home builder related searches on tablet grew 362% year-over- year. 

THE DECLINE OF TRADITIONAL ADVERTISING 

It’s important that agents develop their own digital marketing strategy (in this regard personal LinkedIn profiles are crucial). Traditional advertising, on the other hand, may be useful in case of really big clients, but most of the time is not worth it. (it’s too much expensive compared to digital marketing). 

“BUYERS DIRECT” TENDENCY IS GROWING 

Even more homeowners are posting ads on social media sites and forums to reach customers. The consequences are more control for buyers and sellers over their property transaction and saving money. So developers, agents and property marketing should take advantage of this trend.

FOCUSING ON YOUR TARGET PERSONA IS CRUCIAL

The main consequences of the growth of “buyers direct” tendency? Studying the target persona is becoming more and more crucial. So real estate players should capture buyers’ information and engage with them on a range of platforms.

Property marketing should, therefore, collect geographic, purchase and demographic information of their buyers (or eventual buyers). Creating a target persona may be helpful. 

THE BUYERS IN 2021

Buyers in 2021 are super-informed. They often simultaneously use search engines, Youtube, social networks, forums, mobile apps and apps. That’s why a digital strategy has to move on several fronts to work. 

TONE OF VOICE

Identifying the TOV (tone of voice) suitable for the niche we would like to target should be a priority as well as use it consistently in every channel.

USE THE RIGHT CHANNELS

SITE

Tracking the conversions is essential. Examples of them can be signing up for email, downloading a brochure, following on social media, but also booking an appointment with an agent, requesting a call-back, purchasing something. 

Property marketing’s site should be created in a SEO friendly way (keywords, metatag, inbound links, good index, mobile friendlyness).

It’s essential that images be high quality. Sometimes showcasing the best that your area has to offer can be the ideal solution. An example can be represented by beautiful photos of local town landmarks and familiar sites. A site should be easy to navigate, buyer-focused content, connected to email marketing and with Google Analytics installed. 

For a property marketing agency (or for a digital marketing agency dealing with real estate business) dedicating several microsites to your main clients inside your own site may be the right approach. 

A site should contain information useful to the buyers, like location maps, virtual tour and property prices guides, school and transportation information.

Landing pages are perfect to conversion. They should be navigation-free and mobile friendly.

GOOGLE ADV

Being at the top of the first Google page is essential for a property marketing channel. Using local sponsorship to stay focused on your niche is a good practice as well.

GOOGLE DISPLAY / REMARKETING

Showing possible buyers a banner of a site they have just visited can work. 

YOUTUBE

It’s essential for visual contents and virtual tours. Embedding Youtube videos on your site is important. 

INSTAGRAM

It’s essential for visual contents and reputation. High – quality photos are crucial and a large use of storytelling may be the right tactique.

FACEBOOK

Engaging with followers is something to not forget. Using local sponsorship is important to stay focused on your niche. Reposting your blog articles is good practise.

LINKEDIN

Using the LinkedIn profile of the company is important, as not forgetting to use the personal LinkedIn page of your agents. 

PINTEREST

A Pinterest’s board is the showcase of a property marketing company: focusing on quality of photos and consistency between them should be a priority.

TWITTER

It’s important to answer those who ask questions. Doing it immediately is essential.

NATIVE ADS + NEWSLETTER

Not to forget in a communication plan, they can help. A long form monthly newsletter can be the right solution to tell a story about a particularly inspiring home. 

Read More

Why Spring 2021 is CRITICAL for School Marketing and Some ‘Must Do’ Activities

What is your biggest tip for marketing and communications this Spring Term?

It has to be to think beyond the pandemic. 

Rather scarily, 25 independent schools in the UK have closed as a direct result of Covid-19 (source: TES, 12 Aug 2020). The current pandemic has impacted on family finances and, coupled with the growing competition between schools to retain and recruit pupils, marketing has never been more vital for the independent schools sector in supporting them in being sustainable going forwards.

Read More
Using social media to grow your side hustle

Using social media to grow your side hustle

Marketing , Social Media Marketing

If you’re ready to turn your passion into a business, or your hobby into an extra stream of income, you probably want to know the best way to market yourself so you can start bringing in customers. Social media is the first place you should be going. Get your Instagram profile set up, and your Facebook page running because these are going to be instrumental to growing your brand.

Regular posting to social media is important. But if you think that is all you can do with it to start earning extra money, you’d be mistaken. Whether it’s homemade skincare, online fitness classes, financial advice or any other passion you’re harbouring, keep reading to learn how to maximise social media to grow your side hustle.

Read More

The crucial role of social media in supporting online learning during the pandemic

Marketing , Social Media Marketing

2020 has seen possibly some of the biggest changes, albeit non-intentional, to education since the introduction of the national curriculum in the 1980s. Throughout most of the year, schools have seen a huge shift away from traditional brick and mortar classrooms towards online platforms and learning from home. Schools with larger infrastructure budgets have been able to adapt to this shift easily, however many schools including smaller and independent schools have struggled with the transition.

Read More

The best way to be an authentic brand… try being authentic.

Marketing , Social Media Marketing

Let’s face it, traditional marketing isn’t necessarily authentic in nature. Most brands are trying to position themselves in the best possible light and all too often they oit any details that may be bad for their image. It’s all about wooing customers.

But there is change happening. Thanks to Social Media and Online review platforms like Trip Advisor and Google reviews, we are now in an age of unprecedented consumer empowerment. The ‘truth’ of products and services is just a Google search and tweet away. That’s led to an influx of marketers harping on the need to be “authentic.” What’s often left unsaid is what exactly being authentic means within the context of marketing.

Read More

14 Ways to Use Social Media Monitoring Tools

Social Media Marketing

Social media has become a platform for people to share their thoughts and opinions, especially when it comes to brands, and what they thought of their experience with them. The insights you can gather about prospective customers and competitors through social media monitoring is invaluable for businesses.

Read More