Email marketing is often the cornerstone of a small business owner’s online marketing plan. Among the many reasons is the ability to know and track how many people have opened your email, where and how.
If you’re using email to market to past clients and current prospects, congratulations! It may be time consuming, but it’s worthwhile. It really is the best channel we have to reach everybody we know.
What if I told you you could get even more out of your email marketing in with three easy steps?
You may be asking, why do I need to do that? I did the work of creating and sending the email, isn’t that enough?
Here’s the reality: although the email is going out to everybody in your database, the average open rate for a real estate marketing email is 22%. If you’re getting better results than that, fantastic. If your open rate is lower than that, let’s talk.
So how do you reach more people, get more clicks, start more conversations?
Here are the three easy steps I mentioned to help you extend your reach and maximize the impact of your email marketing.
Step 1: Reach more of your existing contacts
No matter how amazing your email is, there are going to be people who don’t open it the first time around. Re-sending the email to people who didn’t open it with a different subject line or at a different time results in more people reading your email. In Constant Contact, this can be set to go a second time to the “unopens” automatically when you schedule the email. In MailChimp, it has to be done manually, but it’s only a couple of steps.
Step 2: Get social
Post your email on your social media. Audiences are really segmented now. Even if you’re getting a 50% open rate for your email, there may be people on your list who are connected to you on LinkedIn and that’s where they’re spending their time online. Software like MailChimp and Constant Contact will automate this for you – just link your accounts. (I told you these steps were easy!)
Step 3: Post your email newsletter on your website!
If you’re with one of the companies that offers templated websites for realtors, they’ll have a blog page you can access and post your email (some of them will do it for you!) The software you’re using should provide a link that you can use. The benefit is that not only will you reach people who are visiting your site, you can direct potential subscribers to this page so they have a preview of the interesting emails you’re sending, which should motivate them to sign up!
If you’re already sending out an email and want help with some of these steps, please get in touch. If you’re not yet marketing with email, get in touch and together we’ll figure out how to get past the hurdles and help you grow your business!
I’m often asked by business owners if they should be on Facebook or Instagram or both and the answer is a solid “it depends”.
Although Instagram is just six years younger than Facebook, it seems to be the platform more people are talking about than Facebook. but that doesn’t mean Facebook is disappearing. There are still good reasons to use it.
In terms of demographics, there’s more overlap than there used to be, but there are still more people over 45 using Facebook than Instagram. (source: Statista)
A little information about Facebook users:
- 25 million Canadians have Facebook accounts (Statista)
- 2/3 of Canadian Facebook users check the site daily (Facebook)
- 86% of internet users with $100k+ income use Facebook (Sproutsocial)
In terms of usability, you can post anything you like on Facebook. Links, listings, videos, photos, polls, anything you can view online, you can post on Facebook. (Except for a PDF). While you should be sharing some original content, you can also share third party content (from reliable sources, depending on your industry) so you don’t have to be creating all your own material.
A little information about Instagram users:
- 13.2M users in Canada (Statista)
- 41% of Instagram users in Canada are over 35 (Statista)
- 81% of people use Instagram to help research products and services (Hootsuite)
You’re limited to posting photos and short videos on Instagram, but there are more places to post: feed, stories, IGTV and reels, their answer to TikTok.
It’s easier to generate a following and get engagement (or at least likes) on your posts on Instagram. The analytics are really easy to see on each post. The challenge is that if you want to gain traction on Instagram, it’s more hands on. You’ll have to be wiling to spend time looking people up to follow them, understanding how hashtags work and figuring out a plan to create your own content, though it’s fairly straight-forward.
The benefit to using both platforms is that you’ll be reaching more people, but the catch is that you should ideally be posting different content on each channel, although there can be some overlap.
A note to realtors about how advertising has changed: Facebook pulled the rug out from realtors in December. Previously, you could target an ad to different postal codes, you could narrow down by age, you could advertise to people living in a radius around a certain address or location and you could exclude people, so you weren’t advertising to fellow realtors.
That’s changed. You now have to self-identify your ad as housing (if you don’t, the Facebook bots are going to catch you and reject your ad). You have to advertise to people aged 18 to 65+ and you have to advertise to the entire city plus a 15 mile radius. You can still advertise to people who like your page and their friends, and you can narrow it down by interest. If you’re comfortable using the Facebook Ad Manager rather than the boost button, you may find better results that way and you can advertise on both Facebook and Instagram that way.
The decision about whether to use Facebook or Instagram or both comes down to both demographics and time. If your clients skew a little younger (under 45) and you have the time or interest to be creating content, you’ll see better results on Instagram. If you’re dealing with clients who are mostly 35 and up, they’re going to be found on Facebook.