Text Messaging for Real Estate Agent Marketing
The most successful real estate businesses leverage a few key strategies to achieve accelerated growth. These businesses have refined their sales approach over and over again. They know what works and what doesn't when it comes to attracting home buyers.
We're here to let you in on a secret. There's one thing that you could be doing right now to grow your business — text message marketing.
In this article, we'll give you some growth-oriented text message marketing strategies designed to help you accelerate your business, attract more high-paying customers, differentiate from your competitors, and more.
Text Messaging for Real Estate: 6 Steps to Ignite Real Estate Business Growth
The real estate market is a very competitive one. New agents, brokerages, and house flippers are entering the space every day. Text message marketing can give you the competitive advantage that you need to pull ahead of the pack.
From the time you get a new listing all the way through to after the deal is closed, texting can help you automate many of the steps that you need to build a relationship with a future buyer.
Keep reading to learn some strategies for each stage of the buying cycle that will help you grow your real estate business.
1. Let Your Agents Know About the New Listing
If you work in an agency, then you understand how crucial it is to let everyone know about a new property as soon as it hits the market.
Everyone has access to the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) listings from their computers and mobile phones. But, it can be complicated and time-consuming for agents to find good listings.
The MLS is full of residential and commercial properties for sale. Your agents need to spend time talking with prospective buyers and showing houses. They do not need to be wasting their time browsing through the entire MLS looking for homes.
With text message marketing you can quickly send a group message out to all of your agents letting them know when a property is available to sell. You can include photos of the property as well as links directly to the MLS listing for additional information. Moreover, in our experience, many real estate agents use texting for inter-agent communication.
It's simple and easy and helps the agents stay informed wherever they are.
2. Use Yard Signs & Social Media
Now that all of your agents are aware of the new listing, it's essential that you start getting eyes on it ASAP.
Yard signs and social media posts are a great way to do this.
You can easily create unique keywords for every property. These keywords give people the ability to send a text with that keyword and instantly receive information on the specific property that they're interested in.
For example, you could tell them “Text 123MAIN to 313131 for instant info.”
You can include this simple message on your for sale sign right outside the property and even post a picture on social media to raise awareness.
After someone sees it and sends the text message, your text message software can send an immediate reply with more information.
These replies can look something like this:
- Thanks for your interest in 123 Main St! This is a newly renovated 2BR, 1BA, 1,400 sqft home for only $205,000. Call (555) 123-4568 anytime to schedule a viewing. Take a virtual tour by clicking: https://bit.ly/2rhzSVh
- Thanks for your inquiry about the property on 123 Main St. This is a 2 bedroom, 1 bath, 1400 sqft home with a two-door garage and fenced in backyard. It’s priced to move at only $205,000. Click to view the virtual tour: https://bit.ly/2rhzSVh
Imagine this scenario:
John and Susan have one kid that's going to be starting kindergarten next year and another one on the way. They want a home in a nice neighborhood with enough room for their growing family. They started by looking around online through all of the MLS listings to try and find the right house.
They decided to take a drive through their favorite neighborhoods and see what's available. As they're driving, they spotted a for sale sign on a beautiful home.
John starts to slow down so that Susan can write down the phone number on the sign. But just as he started slowing down, he sees someone coming up behind them on the road.
John decides that he needs to speed back up and not block traffic. He tells Susan that he’ll find a place to turn around.
Susan tells John not to worry because she already has all the info!
While they were driving by, she saw that simple message on the yard sign and quickly sent a text message. While John is still looking for a spot to turn around, she's already reading all of the information about this listing thanks to the automatic reply that she received within seconds.
The first interaction with the real estate agency was so simple, easy, and stress-free that Susan and John are already happy before ever even speaking to an agent.
3. Follow Up to Schedule a Showing
Now that they have the information about the property in their hands, you can utilize your texting software to do some automated follow-ups for you.
You can schedule these to go out a day or two after their initial request. By using this schedule, you give them some time to think about it before you ask them to schedule a showing.
You already know that they're interested in the home. And you already know what type of home they're interested in based on the one that they requested additional info on initially.
Now you can keep the conversation going.
You can use automated messages like these to follow up:
- Are you still interested in 123 Main St? Feel free to reply to this text with any questions that you might have.
- Are you still interested in 123 Main St? I have some time on Saturday, and I’d love to show you around.
Here are some general guidelines to follow to help you boost your response rates:
- Keep your texts short and to the point. If this lead is genuinely interested in purchasing a home soon, then you will have more than one opportunity to talk to them. Instead of trying to cram it all into one message, focus on sending something that requires a short reply. These short messages will encourage back-and-forth communication between you and your prospect.
- Don't just send a link without explaining what it is. For example, if you're going to send them a link to your website to view listings, then let them know that's what they'll see by clicking. You can also follow the link with a quick question. This might be something like: “We just posted new houses for sale on http://teamrothenberg.com, have you seen them yet?”
- You also need to make sure that your messages are personal. Nobody wants to feel like they're talking to a robot. Make sure that you let your personality shine through. If you're somebody who likes to use emojis then use them. If you're somebody who would use can't instead of cannot then feel free to abbreviate.
4. Send Appointment Reminders Before the Showing
Using your SMS marketing software for appointment reminders is a smart and cost-effective way to optimize your time as well as let your buyers know that you're on top of things.
One of the biggest reasons that someone doesn't show up is because they simply forgot about it or they forgot to reschedule. Almost everyone carries their cell phone, most people have it with them all the time, and they check it almost 50 times a day. Text messages also have an almost 100% open rate.
So by sending messages to remind them of their appointments, it's a lot easier to make sure that they show up.
These messages might look something like this:
- Hey Susan, I just wanted to confirm our showing on Friday, Nov 10th. If you have any questions, just give me a call at (555) 123-4567.
- Hey John, I wanted to confirm that you were still available for our appointment to come to see 123 Main St with Susan this Saturday. If anything changes, let me know.
- Hey Susan - I’m just reminding you about our showing on Nov 10th. I look forward to showing you the master bath in person - I think you’re going to love it!
5. Reach Out to Cold Leads
You can also use these follow-ups as a way to collect more information about your leads. You can ask:
- What is your first name?
- What city are you wanting to live in?
- What is the budget that you have in mind for your new home?
- What features are you looking for?
These automated messages might look something like this:
- Since you liked 123 Main St, would you be interested in seeing more homes like it in the area?
- Are you still interested in 2 bedroom homes in Cleveland? Would you be interested in seeing other homes around the same price range?
If they respond positively, then you can respond with something like: “Great! There are a few homes in the area that could be a good fit. Would you like me to take you on a tour this Saturday?”
If they say that home wasn’t a good fit for some reason, then you could respond with something like: “Got it! Not quite a good fit. We have all of our current listings here: http://teamrothenberg.com I’ll check back in a few days to see if one of those catches your eye!"
6. Collect Testimonials
Experienced real estate professionals know firsthand how powerful testimonials can be. An authentic, credible, testimonial can help set you apart. They let people know that they can trust you.
There are a few steps that you can follow to help make sure that you get the best possible testimonials.
Start by asking the right questions.
Most of your clients are ready and willing to give you feedback on their experience. But you want to avoid generic testimonials. Instead, make sure that you guide them with the right questions.
Ask them things like:
- How was I able to help you overcome … (a specific challenge)?
- If you were recommending me to someone, what would you tell them?
- How did I help you … (a specific thing you helped them with)?
Use the right tools to collect & display testimonials.
There are a lot of tools, services, and apps that you can use to capture and display your testimonials. They will make it easier for a client to answer questions without being overly inconvenient.
Think about what type of testimonial that you're trying to get. Are you looking for videos, written reviews, or ones that are in more of a question and answer format?
You also need to consider that the format may change from one client to the next based on what they're willing to do. So it's important to consider different tools for different scenarios.
Distribute the link to leave the testimonial.
Once you have set up your testimonial capture software, it's time to start promoting it to past clients. This is where text message marketing can make things easier once again.
You can quickly send out a text message asking them to click on the link to leave you a review. When using this strategy, you want to make sure that your capture page is mobile responsive since most people will be clicking this link on their cell phones.
Put These Text Messaging Ideas into a Growth-Driven Strategy
Are your creative juices flowing? We hope that you will take some of these tips and start implementing them in your campaigns soon.
Of course, successful campaigns will need more than just a few good ideas to make them take off. You need to consider how these campaigns will fit into your bigger, overall, strategies for your business.
That’s why we developed a useful playbook to help you hit the ground running strong with your SMS text message marketing.
If you want to know what kinds of text messages successful real estate agents send to their contacts, download a free copy of our Real Estate Text Message Marketing Playbook.