A Guide to Improving Your Online Real Estate Marketing Skills

In a time of crisis, such as the coronavirus outbreak, the real estate marketing industry counts on the power of digital platforms to keep the business afloat. Online property marketplaces keep products visible to interested seekers even when there are no actual showings. Video conferencing tools enable regular communication with clients despite the lockdown. 

But while technology is good and helpful, you also need the right skills to maximize the platforms you use. In last week’s episode of the Lamudi webinar series titled “Surviving Broker Business in the Time of COVID,” industry experts advised ‘sharpening the saw’ or improving skills as a way of maximizing the time at home while in quarantine. 

Here are some skills that are worth focusing on:

Photography

Next to well-written descriptions, good images are a great come-on for clients. In fact, some people check out the photos before looking at the details of the property when filtering through options. This is what makes excellent photography skills important. Your listings will not stand out with blurry, pixelated images. What you need instead are photos that look like they’ve been taken professionally.

To pull that off, one of the important things to keep in mind is the angle. The key to determining the best vantage point is the unique features of the property. List down all that’s worth highlighting in every area. From there, you’ll be able to decide where the picture should be taken. 

The next thing to remember is the lighting. As much as possible, use natural. If you must use artificial, minimize the shadows. Lastly, take note of the composition. Follow leading lines in rooms. Strive for symmetry. Consider the background and foreground.

How to master real estate photography: Join photography classes such as those offered by Fujifilm Philippines on One Light Portraits at Home, Easy Product Photography at Home, or Professional Quality Livestreaming with your Fujifilm Cameras. Practice the skills at home first while you’re in quarantine, then apply the techniques you learn as soon as the community quarantine is over. 

Lead Generation

Listing properties online is the most basic lead generation tactic when you can’t go out during a lockdown. But while it’s easy and convenient, you should go beyond mere listing down amenities. Write a catchy description, particularly including the unique features of the property, say, the view from the balcony, the open-floor layout of the kitchen, dining, and living room, or the walking distance location from a prominent school, hospital, church, mall, supermarket, or bus stop. Itemize the durable, energy-efficient materials and fixtures.

More importantly, consider the ‘technical’ details of your listing. Make sure that it doesn’t have typographical mistakes, or worse, grammatical errors. Use punctuation marks properly. Avoid unnecessarily using a lot of exclamation points, question marks, or ellipsis. It only makes your listing look unprofessional, turning off buyers. Keep these eyesores away from your listing.

How to master lead generation: Join online training sessions on Lamudi Academy, such as Training Day Thursdays or Lamudi Academy Live Sessions. The real estate platform also launched the Lamudi Webinar Series: Surviving Broker Business in the time of COVID, with a new episode airing on Wednesday, March 25, at 10 AM with the topic “Continuing Broker Business and How to Invest in Real Estate during COVID.”

Virtual Tour Creation

With no actual showings permitted under the lockdown, your future clients are going to rely on virtual tours of properties. Similar to taking great photos, the angle is everything in these marketing materials. Before shooting, mark the areas of the home that offer the best angles. Take test shots and adjust positions accordingly. From there, place your tripod in a level angle to make sure that the photos will be similar. Some tripods have a built-in bubble level, which helps in keeping things steady and horizontal lines straight.

After taking the necessary shots and filtering through them, upload them to a virtual tour software. Use features, such as clickable areas and audio voiceover, to make the material more interactive and ‘real’ for clients.

Feeling intimidated by the process? Don’t be. The latest smartphones have cameras good enough for high-resolution videos, and most video editing software choices also have mobile apps. Start simple by recording the voiceover using your phone’s built-in recorder, then integrate the audio to the video as you’re editing using your smartphone. 

Practicing with one tool or one clip at a time while you’re at home can help you be familiar with the basics of video editing. If you’re satisfied with your output, you can already upload them on your listings to entice property seekers. If you’re not confident with it yet, this just means you should practice more. Use the time you would have used to stage a property for viewing to hone your skills further. 

How to master virtual tour creation: While you can’t go out to take photos of your properties for sale, you can rely on your existing photos to create a compelling narrative. Use the clips and photos of rooms you have at your disposal, and learn the effects that will take them to the next level through video editing boot camps listed on EventBrite

Elevator Pitch Delivery

Just because you’re not meeting clients face to face doesn’t mean you won’t need an elevator pitch. Buyers who saw and are interested in your listings would definitely want to know what you can do for them, even if that means arranging a video call while in home quarantine. That said, it’s crucial to be prepared with your pitch and be confident in delivering it

In essence, your pitch should lay down three things: a problem (of a property seeker), a solution (the services you offer), and a call to action. It may go something like: “It’s hard to buy a home especially when it’s your first time. That’s why I’ve put up an easy five-step process to guide my clients towards homeownership. If you’re interested, I can send you an email about it.” Practice inserting this pitch in a normal conversation with your colleagues while on a video call to be more comfortable about it.

How to master your online elevator pitch: Learn how to improve your online marketing strategy by joining the Lamudi Academy. Here, you will get tips on how to improve your content and communications, understand and avoid common errors, and experiment with different techniques to find an online marketing strategy that fits you. 

Digital technology makes it possible to keep the brokerage practice going in the midst of a crisis — but take note, this is not enough to close a deal. You need to match it with the right skills. While you’re at home, follow what real estate pros have advised: “sharpen the saw.”

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