Building a solid, inbound-based marketing strategy is a lot of work; but when done correctly, your marketing can run in the background 24 hours a day, and continually nurture and bring in new contacts and leads. It’s a bit like magic, and totally worth the time and effort.
But how do you know when you’re done? Are you ever done? Where does your marketing strategy begin and where does it end?
The answer is in understanding, and building, a lifecycle marketing strategy.
★ Want to learn more about inbound marketing? Have a look at these posts and resources:
- The Philosophy of Inbound Marketing, and Why It Works for Agents
- Planning a Real Estate Lead Flow Through Inbound Marketing
- Building an Inbound Marketing Strategy to Get Higher Quality Leads
- Download Our Inbound Marketing Guide for Real Estate Agents
So what is a lifecycle marketing strategy?
It’s the mix of the different marketing strategies you use to guide your target audience’s behaviour as they go through your marketing cycle: from their initial introduction to you through to them becoming an advocate for you, your brand, and your business.
Because the real estate transaction lifecycle is so far apart (around 5 years on average), the marketing lifecycle is also long.
The goal is 2 parts:
- You want to continually remind people that you exist, by providing value, so that they’ll remember you and reach out when they’re ready to make a transaction.
- You want to have done such a good job working with them, that they become advocates of you, your brand, and your business, and refer you to their family, friends, and contacts.
There are several stages to a marketing lifecycle plan:
Stage 1: Initial Discovery
This is the stage where someone firsts discovers you and your brand, and obviously, there’s A LOT of different ways that can happen, like through advertising, social media, SEO, content strategy, or all of the above or anything else. This is the early stage of all the things you do as part of your marketing strategy.
★ Want to know more about building a marketing plan? Take a look at this post called: A Guide for Real Estate Agents: How to Create a Marketing Plan.
Stage 2: Consistent Engagement
This is the stage where the people that discover you engage with your brand, and that can happen a lot of different ways to, like by signing up for your market update email, downloading your seller’s guide, or even just following you on social media.
It’s your opportunity to build on the relationship further by providing as much value as possible at this early stage so you begin to build trust with them.
Stage 3: Evaluation
This is the stage where, during the period of time between now and 5 years+, where they interact multiple times with your brand and have an opportunity to evaluate if they want to work with you.
- They could consistently receive your market update, and believe that you understand the market.
- They could read through your seller’s guide multiple times, and understand how you market a property with successful results.
- They could see your social media content on a daily basis, and build a connection with you and what you stand for.
- Or all of the above, or something else.
Stage 4: Working Together
This is the stage where, after interacting with you and your brand multiple times, they reach out to you because they believe you’re the best person to help them with their next real estate transaction; at this point, they become your client.
This is the stage where most people end their marketing lifecycles, and because of that, they lose out on a lot of repeat, referral, and future business.
Now that they’re your clients, the next stages are all about keeping them as your clients, and eventually advocates, hopefully forever.
Stage 5: Build Experiences
This is the stage where, both during the time they work with you and long after the transaction closes, you continue to build positive experiences for your clients to keep them as your clients, and eventually, advocates.
Once a transaction is done, if they’re not continually reminded, most people will begin to forget about you and your brand. Just because the transaction went well, it doesn’t mean someone will work with you again 5 years down the road if you don’t remind them that you exist.
★ Want to learn more about keeping in touch? Take a look at this post called: The Strategy of Effective Digital Touchpoints.
Stage 6: Advocation
This is the stage that happens in the background without you knowing it. Simply put, if your clients had a very positive experience working with you, and they’re continually reminded that you exist, not only will they likely work with you for their next real estate transaction, but they’re likely to tell people that they know who are thinking about buying or selling that they should reach out to you.
Your Marketing Lifecycle is Powerful
In the end, understanding your marketing lifecycle is powerful because it helps you turn strangers into contacts, who then become clients, who become advocates; and that’s what good marketing is all about.
Want to get better, more qualified leads and build your authority? Our Inbound Marketing Guide is a walkthrough of the overall philosophy of inbound marketing, why it’s effective, and how you can build it into your own real estate marketing strategy to get better marketing results.