As we all know, going into 2021 looks and feels different than it did in any past new year. For the most part, I think we’re met with a lot of optimism that things will go back to ‘normal’ at some point, but no matter what you think or how you look at it, the world has changed. And by that regard, so has marketing strategy (or at least it should have).
As you plan your marketing for 2021, here are some of the areas you might want to consider building into your own strategy.
★ If you want to have look at the marketing strategies I said you should embrace in 2020, click right here.
Short Form Videos
While I’m personally not the type to post an Instagram Reel or video on TikTok, the fact remains that a lot of people are.
There’s no two ways around how huge these platforms are right now: TikTok has an estimated 800 Million monthly users, while Instagram has around 1 Billion monthly users. No matter how you look at it, both platforms are huge.
Short form videos are the basis of TikTok, and because of its popularity, Instagram launched its own short form video feature, called Reels, to compete with it.
That’s because right now, and going into 2021, short form videos are massively popular. And there’s a ton of unique ways agents can take advantage of this to get their content in front of more people, build a bigger following online, and perhaps even get some new clients a long the way (if you think that’s where your target audience is).
If you want to see some examples of how agents are using short form videos to accomplish all of the above, take a look at this article right here on Inman.
Towards the end of 2019, using video to market your listings was, of course, very popular; but after the push to digital of 2020 that the pandemic brought on, it’s absolutely and completely mandatory to have a video at minimum.
In 2021, just having a video won’t be close to enough for you to market a home properly. As more and more people are now completely comfortable starting their home search in front of a screen in the comfort of their own homes, rather than driving around looking at homes in person, you need to market your listings with those types of consumers in mind.
You need to push the boundaries in your listing marketing to make someone feel like they’re actually there, and there are a ton of creative ways to do it. Live Open Houses, 3D Walkthrough Tours, Live Seller Q+A Interviews, even Virtual Reality! I don’t think in 2021 you can push the virtual-ness of your listing marketing too much.
In addition to helping attract buyers, the more you can showcase the virtual aspect to the way you market your listings the better to set you apart from other agents you’re competing with at listing presentaitons.
Google Discovery Ads
In mid 2020, Google introduced a new type of advertising called: Discovery Ads. But what are they?
Discovery Ads are a visual ad format that display across a number of platforms, like the Google Discover Feed (shown on the homepage of the Google app or the Google.com homepage on mobile), YouTube feed, and Gmail.
It works a lot differently than the standard Google PPC ads of the past. The power is in the algorithm, which learns about you and what you like, and then shows you relevant content based on what you’re interested in right now, and based on what you’re likely to be interested in in the future.
Google knows that the way people search is changing: they’re shifting from answers to journeys and from text-based searched to visually-based searches. That’s where the Discover Feed comes in; instead of just providing an answer, it helps you find what you need based on your interests.
It’s powerful stuff, and there’s a lot more to it, so if you’re interested, download the Google app right now and get searching to see the ads populate before your eyes.
Search Engine Strategy
While planning for search isn’t anything new, heading into the new year, it’s more important than ever before to have a solid SEO strategy in place.
More and more people are relying on search to make decisions before they do anything, and if you and your business can’t be found in search, it’s like you don’t even exist.
Simply put, your competitors that display in search results ahead of you have a big advantage over you. Even a less experienced agent with more exposure in search has a chance to build a great business and perhaps even take some of your potential business away from you.
A well-thought-out SEO strategy will build your online presence, raise your domain authority, and be a key part of your overall lead generation strategy. Building out a solid SEO strategy takes a lot of time, a lot of effort, and a lot of knowledge, so the sooner you get started the better.
If you’re interested, here are some SEO related resources we’ve put together:
- Building a Well-Rounded SEO Search Strategy for Your Real Estate Website
- How to Start Building a Solid Real Estate Local SEO Strategy
- Using Pillar Pages to Make Old Content More Accessible
- How Being Authoritative Can Bring You More Quality Website Traffic
- Optimizing Your Real Estate SEO Strategy for Zero Click Searches
In my marketing strategies to embrace for 2020 post, I highlighted the importance of personalization in your email marketing, and while I still believe that will transcend into 2021, the push for more personalization will be across the board; I’m not just talking about including someone’s name, but rather, personalized experiences as a whole.
Think of how different it is when you log into your own Amazon account versus when I log into mine. Every time you search for something or buy something, your Amazon experience changes as it highlights products that you’re more likely to be interested in. It changes and adapts with the goal of personalizing the overall experience for you (and of course to sell you more stuff).
It’s that level of personalization that you should be building into your marketing and workflow strategies heading into 2021.
Whether it’s your listing presentation, your buyer consultation, your email marketing, or anything else, you shouldn’t be using a one-size-fits-all approach. If someone feels like something was created specifically for them, they’re more likely to respond to it.
Adapt, Pivot, and ABC (Always Be Changing)
If there’s anything that 2020 taught us, it’s that everything can change in an instant. We’ve all had to adapt and pivot this year.
We now know that what we’re doing right now may not be what we’re doing tomorrow; and while of course, that applies to your own personal life and how you run your business, it also applies to your marketing strategy.
Wishing you much success in 2021!
With up to date marketing trends relevant to today’s market, our report is a selection of curated content, information, and data that will give you an outline of what’s working right now in real estate marketing.