smart goals

A smart agent sets SMART goals

A smart agent sets SMART goals

Before you start any advertising campaign, it’s a good idea to review your goals to make sure you don’t waste any time – or money. A Savvy Agent is crazy goal oriented. Not having goals is like throwing spaghetti at a wall to see what sticks. (That seems like a bad, and messy, idea.) Instead, KISS with SMART.

Hellllloooo acronyms! Have you heard of these?

KISS = Keep It Simple Stupid – it’s just a nice reminder to not get too out of control with complicated goals. Keep it simple – easy enough, right? Just in case, we have the next acronym….

SMART = Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Timely. Whew, that’s a mouthful!

Just so you know, we didn’t create either of these acronyms. But, they WORK and that’s what’s important, so we totally support that.

S = Specific 

You want to have specific goals that are simple (KISS!) and communicate what is expected. Think about the “who, what, where, when, why & how” for your goal.

  • Who do you want to reach?
  • What do you want them to do once you’ve got their attention?
  • Where is all this going to happen?
  • When will it happen?
  • Why is it important to your audience?
  • How much is your budget?

Maybe you’re running a Facebook ad to generate leads. In this scenario, these might be some of your answers that help create your specific campaign goal.

  • You want to reach people that live within a half mile of your listing at 123 Main St.
  • You want them to click on your home value link.
  • As said above, this is going to happen on Facebook.
  • Set a time frame for your ad. Perhaps this listing just sold so you want to run the ad for 10 days.
  • It’s important that your audience know the value of their home because it’s a HUGE investment! Even if they’re not ready to sell today, they should be aware of how sales are going in the neighborhood and how those sales are impacting their own equity.
  • Your budget could be $5 a day, so $50 for the campaign since it runs for 10 days.

M = Measurable

Having goals is great, but you need to be able to measure results so you can determine if you’re on track for success or if you need to make adjustments. Measurable goals go hand in hand with tracking results. I know it’s not the sexy part of the job, but it’s SO important! Otherwise, how will you know if your efforts are doing what you want?

So, in the case of our 10 day home value ad, you can get all the measurable numbers from Facebook. You’ll know how many people you’ve reached, how much you’ve spent, and the cost per click for example. And, in the spirit of KISS, we’re not going to go super in depth with Facebook ad results because that’s a little off topic of this post.

A = Attainable

Is the goal you set realistic? Will you or your team be able to meet this goal? If not, it’s time to revise!

For example, if you said, “My goal is to reach 15,000 people in 10 days and I expect 10% of those people to register for their home value and then 10% of those leads to result in a sale.” Yikes. That’s a steep goal! That would be 15 sales for only $50 spent. Just so you know, that’s not how Facebook home value leads work. Even the 10% registration goal is probably unrealistic. So, while you KISS, make sure you keep it real too.

R = Relevant

Does your goal matter to your business? Does it address a core initiative? If not, you know what to do – start over.

A relevant goal would be something that helps you move forward toward your overall goals. A lead generating campaign is relevant. A boost targeting engagement could be relevant to growing your audience. Spending money on an ad with no call to action, is not relevant.

For example, perhaps your city was voted a winner in a top 10 list which is very exciting. You might share the top 10 list article on your Facebook page. And, maybe you’re so excited that you decide to boost the post thinking your audience will be just as excited! But, hold the phone – sending traffic to an end result that isn’t yours is expensive. In this case the top 10 article isn’t going to tell you if anyone signed up for their email list. They’re not even going to thank you for the traffic to sent their way. The money you spend on this ad will be wasted because it’s not specific, measurable, there’s no attainable goal, and it’s certainly not relevant to generating leads. So don’t do that.

T = Timely

Your goal needs an end date or a date that you expect the goal to have been reached. That’s easy enough, right?

In the example above, your ad campaign runs for 10 days. Done!

But, there are other ads that might have a longer life span. Maybe you advertise on Zillow each month. That’s money spent, so it needs a SMART goal. In the Timely example, you might spend each month for years. So, in this case, evaluate your results on a monthly basis.

You wouldn’t want to start a campaign without an end date because how could you set specific, measurable and attainable goals if you don’t know when it ends? Plus, that type of ad gets out of control really quickly if you stop paying attention. And, if it’s an ad on Facebook, there are algorithms and stuff to think about. SO, the moral of this story is set timely goals with a start and an end date.

This might seem like a lot of extra work just to run a home value ad on Facebook. But, if you set SMART goals and do your best to KISS, then you’ll get better results for your investments. And that’s a Savvy Agent secret!

 

 

advertising frequency matters

Advertising Frequency Matters

Advertising Frequency Matters

Have you ever mailed a postcard advertising an event, open house or promoting a free CMA and received less than amazing results? Your advertising frequency could be to blame.

Advertising Frequency Matters

Thomas Smith wrote a guide called Successful Advertising in 1885. His observation on human behavior and response to advertising still holds true today:

  • The first time people look at any given ad, they don’t even see it.
  • The second time, they don’t notice it.
  • The third time, they are aware that it is there.
  • The fourth time, they have a fleeting sense that they’ve seen it somewhere before.
  • The fifth time, they actually read the ad.
  • The sixth time they thumb their nose at it.
  • The seventh time, they start to get a little irritated with it.
  • The eighth time, they start to think, “Here’s that confounded ad again.”
  • The ninth time, they start to wonder if they’re missing out on something.
  • The tenth time, they ask their friends and neighbors if they’ve tried it.
  • The eleventh time, they wonder how the company is paying for all these ads.
  • The twelfth time, they start to think that it must be a good product.
  • The thirteenth time, they start to feel the product has value.
  • The fourteenth time, they start to remember wanting a product exactly like this for a long time.
  • The fifteenth time, they start to yearn for it because they can’t afford to buy it.
  • The sixteenth time, they accept the fact that they will buy it sometime in the future.
  • The seventeenth time, they make a note to buy the product.
  • The eighteenth time, they curse their poverty for not allowing them to buy this terrific product.
  • The nineteenth time, they count their money very carefully.
  • The twentieth time prospects see the ad, they buy what is offering.

Frequency sells, especially in advertising. We recommend developing a specific strategy to reach your campaign goals. Perhaps instead of trying to reach as many people as your budget allows, you could target a narrower audience with multiple messages. Imagine if you caught them on multiple platforms – direct mail, Facebook, Instagram, a phone call and/or even word of mouth!

golden rules of social media

4 Golden Rules of Social Media Marketing (and How to Use Them)

4 Golden Rules of Social Media Marketing (and How to Use Them)

Fact: Social Media is completely changing the game, no matter what industry you’re in, or who your target audience is. In the past 10 years alone, Social Media Marketing has morphed from a novelty that only big brands incorporated into their marketing strategies to an absolute MUST for any business, big or small. Real estate agents aren’t exempt and it’s a challenge to know what to do, when to do it, and for crying out loud – WHERE?? Fret not, we’ve put together an easy list of 4 Golden Rules of Social Media Marketing that will put you on the right path.

golden rules of social media marketing

1. Plan Ahead

“Rogue marketing” is a thing of the past — especially when it comes to Social Media. Posting a fresh Tweet or a Facebook status on a whim can feel like a good idea at first… but if you want explosive results, approaching Social Media as a long-term marketing tool is essential.

Planning your posts in advance does more than just save you time; it ensures the content you are sharing falls in line with your higher-level marketing goals (and helps you leave out all the fluff at the same time). At Savvy Agent, we schedule our Social Media posts at least 1 week out, to make sure it’s perfectly aligned with our marketing strategy.

And, once you get the hang of it, it hardly takes any time at all!

2. Have Fun

Yes, it’s important to have a plan… but nothing is worse than a Facebook post that sounds like your legal team wrote it (no offense to you lawyers out there). Social Media is the perfect arena to establish the voice and tone of your company or organization, while engaging your customer base at the very same time.

Your customers expect you to let your personality shine through, while still being true to your brand, mission, and values. Be sure to inject a little fun into each and every post, even if it’s just a clever hashtag or two.

3. Be Authentic

Authenticity is essential in every piece of content you produce. I don’t know about you, but I can spot a cookie-cutter social post from a mile away. It’s also pretty easy to spot a post that’s written by someone in the Philippines.

Whether it’s a snap, a tweet or a Facebook post, make sure that everything you say sounds like your unique, authentic voice and holds true to the values you’ve built up. Social media is a great place to build trust with your customers — but it’s also a great place to lose it.

4. Engage with your Audience

With the wealth of Social Media automation tools out there, it’s easy to just post an article on your Facebook page and forget about it.

Don’t do that. Nothing is a bigger turn-off than scanning through a Facebook page and seeing “0 likes, 0 comments” on week-old posts.

The brands who perform the best online are always engaging with their audience (and learning from them at the very same time). Think about what your audience would be interested in. I promise you, they don’t care about your newest listing. But, they might care about home values in the neighborhood. Or something fun/funny/exciting that happened to you. They really like to see cool pictures of kitchens, baths, landscaping, etc. (Just not your listings!)

And, don’t forget to follow up on any comments! Don’t walk away from your posts after you share them. Make sure you get notifications or check in regularly to respond to comments on something you shared on Facebook or joining a conversation in Twitter. Whatever it is, once you get them engaged – YOU need to engage.

 

 

create a logo

4 Simple Rules to Create a Logo

4 Simple Rules to Create a Logo

Most companies create a logo that represents the face of their brand. It’s probably one of the first things that makes a new company feel “real”. We could go on and on, and on and on, and on and on… about logo design. But, we won’t. Here’s the 4 simple rules to create a logo that you need to keep in mind when going through the design process for your logo:

Be unique

You don’t want to be like everyone else! Your logo should be exclusive to your business.

Pro tip: avoid the same roof peaks that every other agent has in their logo.

Be versatile

Your logo needs to look good in all formats, and different sizes. For example, it needs to look just as amazing on mobile as it does on a billboard. The more flexibility you have with color, background placement, etc, the happier you’ll be.

Pro tip: avoid having a color block background because it will look like a weird square/rectangle on everything you publish it on.

Be ageless

Clean lines, symmetry and the neutrality of a design can make it timeless.

Pro tip: avoid the current trend because it will have an expiration date.

Be relevant

Try to capture the essence of your company in the logo. Easier said than done, I know. Consider how well your logo matches your company’s personality. For example, if you are a luxury agent, you wouldn’t want to use a cartoon or something overly “fun”.

Pro tip: don’t be afraid to have fun, just keep it real.

 

If you successfully follow these 4 simple rules to create a logo, then your design is likely to be on the road to greatness.

Here’s a great example of a logo (sorry, it’s iconic but not real estate related) that has stood the test of time:

simple rules to create a logo

The “I love New York” logo was designed in the 70’s and today still generates over $30M in revenue. That’s a GREAT logo.

attention grabbing

7 Attention Grabbing Tips to Engage Your Audience

7 Attention Grabbing Tips to Engage Your Audience

Marketing is a huge component of your real estate business. And, as a marketer, you need to be able to grab your audience’s attention as fast as you can. Did you know that humans have an average attention span of 8 seconds? (FYI, a goldfish pays attention for 9 seconds.) So, you have a super small opportunity to get someone’s attention with your marketing. We’ve put together our top 7 attention grabbing tips to boost your marketing:

Attention grabbing headlines.

For example, people will google their questions – and a headline in the form of a question might be just the ticket. Some examples:

  • When should I replace my roof?
  • Why should I use a real estate agent to sell my house?
  • What does my home warranty cover?

Also, people LOVE lists. For example:

  • The 10 Things That Could Go Wrong When You Sell Your House
  • Top 40 Staging Tips to Get More Money
  • The 7 Secrets to Making Your Home Warranty Work for You

And, How To’s are one of my personal favorites.

  • How to Get Your House Ready to Sell
  • How to Find an Awesome Real Estate Agent
  • How to Buy a House with No Down Payment

Use white space.

What the heck is white space? If you look at an ad, it’s the space surrounding your copy. (Copy=words in the ad.) So basically, less is more. Don’t feel like you need to say more just because there’s space to use. People will be able to read your message quickly and clearly if it’s short and too the point – surrounded by white space.

attention grabbing tips

 

COLOR

Which do you notice more? COLOR or COLOR or COLOR or COLOR or COLOR. Color is awesome when used to grab attention. But with anything else, try not to overdo it because you could risk annoying your readers if they had to read neon green on neon yellow

 

Size Matters

When you use printed materials, think about how you can use non-traditional (aka different) sizes to grab attention. Could your “why use me” document be a tri-fold brochure? What if you used x-large business cards? Or, business cards with rounded edges. How about using a hang tag on as a gift tag instead of a business card? There’s lots of ways to be creative, but custom printing can be more expensive so you’ll want to be strategic.

 

Packaging

White envelopes are so boring. What if you delivered your next pre-listing presentation in a flat box? Even a metallic blue envelope would be more exciting. Be bold in your packaging!

 

Design

Professional design is best whenever you can. Yes, having a designer can be expensive. Be savvy and work within your budget. Try not to use the boring, outdated (and over-used) listing presentation from your MLS. Using a pro will definitely save you time but if you must DIY, there are a lot of “how to” tutorials out there. It’s sort of like a seller not using an agent and selling by owner. Find a way to make your look (your brand!) be different, and better, than the competition.

Formatting

Use indents and bullets to draw attention to important points. Try bold, italics or underline (but not all three) for emphasis.

Indent example.

  • bullet example
  1. another bullet!

 

BONUS TIP

Some suggest confetti inside an envelope. This would irritate me. If you mailed me glitter that came pouring out an envelope, I would hate you forever. So, definitely think twice before glitter bombing a potential client. (And, please, please, please don’t glitter bomb me!)

The moral of this story is that you have a very brief moment to get attention, so be strategic and gain the advantage.

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