Everything changes, and nothing stays the same. Yes, it's a cliché. But it's also very true. This came to mind as I was thinking about how advertising has changed since I graduated and got my first job 20 years ago. Over these past two decades, there have been sweeping industry changes.
I also thought about how marketing has changed dramatically in the last five years in the specific area of real estate.
I'd say the chances are pretty good that you had a website five years ago. Your email contact list was probably established. You may have been doing a digital newsletter as well.
But were you using social media? OK, you may have had a Facebook page, maybe even a Twitter account. But were you using them for business? Probably not. Social media was just beginning to take hold.
Are you using them now? If not, you're missing out. More and more, online promotion — either through digital ads, social media or a website — is going to be an effective way to reach potential customers, and turn those customers into clients. Social media has become a very powerful method of communication, and even the so-called gurus really can't hypothesize about how much it will change and influence people.
Now, I'm not saying that you should abandon your more traditional marketing methods. Not at all. They are still effective and still reach a certain segment of home buyers. The goal will be to integrate your online and offline marketing efforts so they complement each other. They are not mutually exclusive, either. You can use them to promote each other. Although you can use them in similar ways, they do have their specific purposes.
For example, put your Facebook fan page and Twitter feed in your email signature or footer. On your website or blog, you should have a lead-capture function for potential customers to sign up for your printed newsletter. Your newsletter can offer some of the same content as your blog, while offering the opportunity to explore subjects that don't have an expiration date. Your business cards should have your fan page and Twitter address. When you run a print ad, make sure to have "Follow us" along with the Facebook and Twitter badges.
The bottom line is that online and offline marketing all work together in a comprehensive marketing plan.
If this seems like a daunting task, we can help you develop an effective strategy to integrate your online and offline marketing. Call us at 800.458.8245 for a free marketing consultation.