Why it’s time to leverage email automation, and how to get started.
For luxury real estate agents who are ready to take their email marketing efforts to the next level, exploring email automation is essential. By differentiating your messaging for each lead, you can connect with your audience on a deeper level and provide high-quality service for leads at any point in their real estate journey. Here’s how you can incorporate email automation into your real estate marketing strategy.
Why Use Email Automation in Your Real Estate Business
While all of your marketing efforts have their place, one of the most lucrative and irreplaceable business assets you own is your email list. Email serves the powerful purpose of keeping you top of mind for your audience. The highly customizable nature of email marketing means that you can send varying messages to clients depending on their current place in the real estate journey, their location, and their past responses.
Additionally, your email list is one of your only audience lists that is truly yours. The changing landscape of social media means that your follower lists on Instagram, Facebook or TikTok could vanish or become useless at any time — you don’t have full control over these platforms. However, your email list is truly in your hands, not dependent on the mercy of any algorithm.
Many real estate agents utilize their email list to send out regular updates, newsletters, and market analyses. For the vast majority of real estate marketers, email marketing takes on a “one size fits all” approach. After all, this strategy still keeps you regularly showing up in the inbox of your audience, reminding them of your expertise and your presence in their area in case a need should arise for them to find a real estate agent. This approach works well for agents who are early on in their careers and still dipping their toes in the water of various marketing outlets and strategies.
However, for luxury real estate agents who are ready to take their email marketing to the next level, email automation is a powerful tool. In short, email automation allows you to write a set of emails up front, then tell the email automation system which leads to send each message to and when. For example, if someone visits your site and signs up for your email newsletter, you can create an automated welcome series to help them get to know you and open the door for them to ask questions or set up a meeting. This way, potential clients have a much lower chance of slipping through the cracks.
Email automation can benefit your luxury real estate business by:
1. Making your leads feel seen and heard
Email automation allows you to differentiate and personalize your emails to clients based on previous actions they’ve taken online or based on assigned categories. This helps remove the large-scale feel from email marketing — the feeling that you’re addressing everyone — and instead makes leads feel as if you’re specifically addressing them! For instance, in the welcome series example above, you might send a series of three welcome emails once someone signs up for your newsletter. The first might be rather generic, with a quick introduction to your background and your services.
The second might provide helpful information about your local market, and the third could dive into your top tips for buyers or sellers, depending on which category they fall into. The ability of email automation programs to sort your new subscribers into buyers and sellers, for example, is part of the beauty of the strategy! By either asking a few questions upon sign-up or creating various lead funnels with buyer or seller-focused materials, you can set yourself up to deliver relevant and helpful content from the very start.
A recent study by Accenture revealed that 91% of consumers are more willing to buy from businesses that give them personalized and specific offers. When your email marketing is responsive to the needs of your clients and leads, you make them feel seen, heard, and important. You gain the ability to send targeted messages that matter to them, instead of clogging their inbox with content that’s only helpful to a different subset of your audience.
2. Freeing up your time
Following up with leads can be a time-consuming aspect of growing your luxury real estate business and taking advantage of any real estate lead generation services you may be using, but it’s one of the most essential steps toward success. When you automate an email response for various actions taken on your website, you save yourself the time of manually sifting through your website analytics to pinpoint new leads and follow up with them individually.
The automated nature of this strategy means you can essentially set it and forget it, while still nurturing your leads appropriately and building trust and connection along the way. With a properly-crafted automated email campaign, you can turn a casual browser who happened upon your site into a qualified lead, without much added effort on your part.
Find out how to get started with email automation for your real estate business.
How to Use Email Automation
As with every new marketing tool, getting acquainted with email automation programs can feel daunting at first. However, once you get started and stick to a platform that works for you, your automation efforts can come together quickly and begin making a positive impact in your business in no time!
1. Find the right platform for your goals
There are countless email automation platforms on the market now, each with their own set of pros and cons. The right software for you will depend on your budget, how many subscribers you have (or hope to build to), and your reporting and data needs. Some programs are also more user-friendly than others, with features like drag-and-drop email design templates and smooth scheduling tools. A few popular programs include MailChimp, Zoho, ActiveCampaign, and Constant Contact.
Many platforms provide a free trial, either for a short amount of time or up to a certain number of subscribers. Once you’ve read through reviews and general reports on different software options, initiating a free trial before committing to a paid service is a great next step. Because the initial process of learning how to use a new platform and transferring all of your email contents into a new system can require some intensive time up-front, aim to choose a platform you can use for your future marketing goals as well as your current needs.
2. Write your emails
Once you’ve settled on a particular software, it’s time to craft your emails! Explore your email automation program to find out exactly how it ties into your website analytics, and leverage automation in every way you can. A welcome campaign can help build initial relationships and is a great place to start as you begin writing your email series. You might also craft campaigns around visitors viewing properties on your website, completing an inquiry about their home value, or utilizing a mortgage calculator.
The beauty of email automation is that it can send out precisely the right message to precisely the right people, at the right time. No more lag between a form filled out and a follow-up email, and no more skimming through your “Sent” folder to see who needs a nudge. Make the most of the automation by getting specific in your email copy and addressing the exact pain points that come along with whichever action triggers each email.
In each email, include a clear call to action. Whether you’re asking users to respond to your email with more information on their real estate journey or whether you’re sending them to a particular property page or resource on your website, provide a helpful next step for them to complete once they’ve read your email. This will open the door for deeper connections and ideally face-to-face meetings and contracts!
3. Create your campaigns
With your email copy ready to go, you can begin to configure your emails within your software. Utilize preloaded templates and incorporate your own logo and branding in order to make each email feel like yours. The style, branding, and tone of your emails should match that of the rest of your marketing materials, but creating each email shouldn’t require intense design chops. Keep the focus on your words.
Then, determine the triggers and timing for each email in every series. For example, if your welcome campaign includes four emails, you might send the first one instantly after signup, then move to every couple of days or even weekly. This way, you’re following up without becoming “clutter.”
4. Analyze data
As you test out your new campaigns, take time to periodically analyze their performance. Many email automation programs will provide useful information about how many people opened each email, read through it, and clicked on the links within it. You can analyze the success of your emails by tying back to the clear CTAs in each one.
If you notice that some emails don’t result in many clicks, replies, or completed CTAs, it may be helpful to go back to the drawing board and tweak the copy. If any emails have a particularly low open rate, it’s time to change up the subject line! Email automation, like all types of marketing, requires ongoing trial and error and lifelong learning.