How to differentiate yourself from the competition in the real estate market

The real estate market is once again booming, the great crisis of the 21st century is far gone, ushering in an era of economic prosperity that is translating into a considerable rise in housing prices.

Houses and commercial premises are sold and rented quickly, but like any booming market, competition is also soaring so now, more and ever, it’s very important to differentiate your business from the competition.

If you are into real estate, a good marketing strategy will help your target audience to find you and, above all, to trust you.

In the end you sell one of the most important assets in a person’s life, their home.

Even if you work in real estate transactions for investors, trust is a prerequisite, since the amounts of money that are handled are serious stuff.

In this post I’m going to talk briefly about the most effective real estate marketing strategies but above all I’m going to focus on the differentiating element, which is also my specialty, copywriting and how to apply it to your real estate business to attract attention and sell more.

 

Overview of Real Estate Marketing Strategies

Marketing in this sector, as in every other sector, is vital to make your business well known, get more customers and create a brand.

There is a lot of literature explaining in detail each of the real estate marketing strategies that you can use.

I will summarize here the ones that, in my opinion, are the most important.

 

Pay attention to your website

Obviously photos are very important for this type of business but so is the overall feeling prospects get when landing on your page.

Don’t put too many photos and calls to action on the landing page (whether it is your home page or a data capture page, such as a mailing list).

Put the right information without extending too much but adapting the words to the needs of your target audience. I will talk in more detail about this point in the next block of copywriting.

 

Mobile Version

According to a study carried out by Ofcom in 2017, mobile phones have already surpassed all other devices when it comes to connecting to the Internet.

As you can see on the graph the majority of people spend most of their time on their smartphones.

That’s why you have to make sure your website is suitable for mobile interaction and that the user experience is as good as it is from a laptop or computer.

 

Video

Video is already the king of SEO. Web pages with videos have a better ranking in search engines, simply because people like to watch videos since they give them more confidence.

The following graph shows that in 2018 video already accounts for 3 quarters of total internet traffic.

The ideal thing would be to upload on your website videos of all the properties included in your listing, but only if they comply with a minimum of quality standards. It’s better not to show any videos at all than to show really bad ones.

If you don’t have the means to make professional videos of each property, what can help you attract more customers and generate a connection with them is to upload a video of you or a member of your team talking about the company.

What motivates you, why you like what you do and how you can help potential customers find their perfect home, investment or location.

Video, as we’ve seen, generates greater trust and more organic traffic to your website.

 

Social Media

A beautiful property is a very attractive thing to look at, people dream about living in some of these places, so posting regularly on Social Media will definitely attract more attention to your business.

Facebook, YouTube and Instagram are the ideal channels to show photos and videos of properties. It is highly advisable to add short but effective descriptions of the benefits and details of each of them.

It can also be very positive to occasionally make Facebook Live videos and Instagram stories talking about an especially attractive property directly from the spot.

These videos will generate interest and organic traffic to your page, you can even form a community on social media.

People that follow you on social media may not be thinking about buying a property at this moment, but everyone likes to look at nice houses, and then when it’s time to buy they’ll think about your company.

Work on your emails

If you already have a contact list you can make infinite use of it by sending periodic emails.

Think about content that will attract attention and be useful.

Content that your readers will read, even if they aren’t thinking about buying a house immediately, they still won’t delete your emails because they entertain them.

Share useful news about mortgages, specific information about the area of your city you work in, or simply show nice pictures of houses with a short and attractive description.

Because when that person will be willing to buy (or sell) they will turn to you.

 

Fine tune SEO for Real Estate

Most of the people search directly on the Internet when they want to sell or buy a property using the words that better describe their needs, so it’s fundamental to optimise your website for Google.

Refine your links and titles using long-tail keywords, that is, those longer and more specific keywords.

I’ll give you an example:

Keyword: Apartment in Amsterdam

Long-tail Keyword: Apartment-2 Bedrooms-Amsterdam-De Pijp

This way your entry will come up fewer times when people do more generic searches (Apartment-Amsterdam) but you will have many more chances of getting at the top of the results page when someone does a more specific search. (2 bedrooms apartment in de Pijp, Amsterdam)

Using longer keywords has a huge advantage because, normally, people who do more specific searches are usually really interested and therefore there are more chances they will be a real prospect.

If you want to know more about SEO in general, in this post I talk more in depth about this topic.

 

The differentiating element: Copywriting

You have already applied all or some of the marketing techniques for your real estate business that we have seen before and you have more visits to your page, but you are missing something essential. Connecting with your ideal customer so he/she becomes a real customer.

If you really want to connect with your customer you have to use copywriting techniques when writing all your texts.

Not sure what copywriting is? I’ll define it for you in one sentence:

Copywriting is the technique used by some writers to awaken in the potential customer the desire to buy.

Applying copywriting to your home page and property descriptions is what will make the difference.

Here are some steps to follow in order to apply copywriting techniques to your texts and thus stand out from your competition.

After that we’ll see some real examples.

Avoid hackneyed expressions

Every time I study real estate websites when working on a project, I get bored of seeing the same words (especially adjectives) over and over again. Luxurious, gorgeous, brand new.

Try to be different in your descriptions, instead of using the same adjective over and over again, use less trite synonyms or descriptive phrases that mean the same thing but awaken the senses.

Instead of a luxurious kitchen, you can replace it with a modern kitchen with the latest advances in electrical appliances, or a very spacious kitchen with lots of light. You’ll want to get up in the morning for breakfast in such a cosy kitchen.

The most important thing is to awaken the senses of the potential buyer and help him to imagine himself living in that house.

Know your target audience

Photo by Jeff Golden

Getting to know the person who is reading is essential when writing texts that encourage people to buy.

For example, if you are selling a 4-bedroom house, most likely families are the type of customer that will be interested. In this case you should mention nearby schools, parks, safe areas without traffic, etc.

If what you are selling is an apartment with one or two rooms, you can imagine that it will be couples without children or people alone who are interested. In this case what you have to enumerate are other benefits such as access by public transport also at night, lively area, hip shops, etc…

You have to make a good segmentation of the ideal customers and answer with your description the possible questions that customer might have.

You must be honest using the right words, if for example you use the word luxurious (which I really don’t recommend) make sure that it is actually a luxury property.

 

Find the unique value proposition

Look for what makes that house or place special or unique. Is it the old façade? Or perhaps the history of the neighbourhood in which it is located? Or a stained-glass wall that separates the bathroom inside a loft?

There is always something that makes a place special and different. A good way to find it is to ask the old tenants what they like most about the place, after all they were the buyers before. They will also know the best kept secrets of the neighbourhood.

Look for those special details and highlight them in your description.

Be concise

You should carefully choose the words in order to say a lot in only a few sentences and make sure potential buyers don’t get bored and stop reading.

Create an eye-catching headline for the listing and describe the four of five things that make that apartment or commercial property attractive in the eyes of your target audience.

Then create a brief description of the advantages of the property, using expressions that provoke an emotion in the potential buyer.

I assure you that an original description listing the benefits of a property and talking about what makes it special, can in many cases counteract any unattractive photos and convince the potential buyer to ask for an appointment.

Next, I am going to show you an example of how you can improve the text on your website, to incite sellers to contact your company

 

This was the original text

And this is the text that I have written applying copywriting

 

 

We have used facts and figures to show the efficiency of the company, exposure, average selling time, customer satisfaction, etc. This is what a person who wants to sell is interested in.

It’s important to write using a direct language and to encourage the prospect to contact you without any commitment.

When you say Just try us, you eliminate the final objections, they understand this, hey, don’t worry if you are not 100% sure, you can talk to us and if you are not convinced after our meeting there won’t be any obligations.

 

I hope I have helped you with these tips to improve your visibility and above all to differentiate your real estate business from the competition.

If you want to know more copywriting techniques, send me a message and I will be happy to talk to you.

See you around 😊

 

Featured image: Frank Smidtke

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