Whether you’re a new or seasoned real estate agent, you already know that you are your brand. It’s not your brokerage or your team… it’s you.
It only takes 10 seconds for consumers to form an impression of your brand, so getting crystal clear about how you want to present your brand identity online and staying consistent with it key to creating a winning online marketing strategy.
What is real estate branding and why does it matter?
Real estate branding online is simply the digital manifestation of the image for your business that you’ve built (or want to build) in person. Even if you’re just starting out in the luxury real estate space, you should have an idea of what you bring to the table as well as the niche you want to serve.
Bringing that awareness into the online space means you’ll be creating valuable content specifically based on who you are and who your ideal clients are. It’s virtually impossible to strike a real connection with everyone, so it’s better to focus on building a brand that gets passionate leads from targeting one or two types of prospects who are ready to do business with someone like you rather than targeting a lot of prospects in general who might not be as interested.
The only differences between building your brand in person and online are that online, your inconsistencies can be more noticeable since your content never goes away (unless you delete it) and it’s far easier to slip into the trap of sacrificing your brand for the immediate gratification of self promotion on social media.
It’s important to keep in mind that building your brand is a long-term commitment and it can take anywhere from 5 to 7 impressions for consumers to recognize a logo or branding, so expect a bit of a time investment to get it just right.
Successful real estate branding means knowing how to connect with your niche online
In the world of luxury real estate, your prospects aren’t searching for a generalist. It can be tempting to want to generalize your marketing approach online to reach more people, but quality always wins over quantity.
Discerning clientele want to know they’re working with an expert, and their online search for an agent will reflect that. If a prospect is looking to move to Beverly Hills, it only makes sense to search for “real estate agents in Beverly Hills” and not just a “real estate agent in Los Angeles”. Your brand identity should reflect your expertise so that potential leads know they’ve found the right agent for their specific needs. Creating a client avatar can help you clarify your message.
Figuring out how to make yourself visible to the niche you want to serve online requires putting yourself in your ideal client’s shoes and creating what’s called a client avatar.
To create your client avatar, you need to answer questions about your ideal client such as:
- How old are they?
- What do they do for work? Are they retired? An entrepreneur?
- Are they single? Married? Have a family?
- What are some of their values?
- What do they do for fun?
- What are some of their challenges?
The answers to those questions should inform the kind of content you create for your social media, email marketing, and blog content and can even help you figure out where your ideal client spends time online.
For example, if your ideal client is a single, Silicon Valley executive, your marketing time will be better spent creating content about the benefits of smarthomes on LinkedIn rather than posting a review of the school district in your area on Facebook.
When you’re leveraging your expertise in a certain area and creating content with a clearly-defined person in mind, you’re more likely to be speaking directly to specific needs and making genuine connections
Beyond figuring out who your client is, it’s also important to know who you are. 64% of consumers say they trust a brand more if they share values with it, so it pays to make sure your brand feels authentic.
Choosing an aesthetic and sticking to it is key for brand recognition
How you present your content is just as important as the content itself. Even the colors you choose to use can help with brand recognition and how much trust you inspire from potential leads.
Choosing your colors and fonts
A specific, branded color can boost brand recognition by 80%, while 60% of people decide whether they’re attracted to a branded message based on the color alone. This is especially true when it comes to marketing on social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook, which are highly visual platforms.
The fonts you choose can have a similar effect, and the rule of thumb is to have one font for headings and another for your body text and they should both be easy to read. Use the same fonts on your web pages as you do on your business cards, direct mailers, and any ad content that you create to keep everything consistent.
Branding your listings
Typically, branding your listings is best left to a professional real estate marketing agency like us since we have a team of developers who can implement custom coding to your IDX integration so that your listings seamlessly complement with your website.
Listings that are left unbranded can look bulky or out of place on an otherwise professional-looking website, and 38% of users will stop using a website if the layout is unattractive or difficult to use.
Cohesive messaging throughout your content inspires trust
Keeping a content calendar is one of the best ways to avoid disjointed branding and gives you full control over how you’re presenting your content. Since 47% of buyers view 3-5 pieces of content before engaging with a sales rep in most industries, making sure that your content keeps the same tone and message on any platform your prospects find you on can boost their trust and interest.
When you have content planned out ahead of time, it’s easy to keep your messaging and aesthetic in perfect alignment. Typically, those off-brand moments happen when you realize you’ve neglected your blog or social media accounts and you end up posting another listing or sharing some generic meme just to stay active.
If you’re struggling with real estate branding, take a look at our work for inspiration or schedule a consultation with one of our experts.