Let me tell you a little story.
Recently I was involved in an interesting conversation on social media. The original post wasn’t mine, but the debate was about whether estate agents should be bragging about how many viewings, market appraisals and sales they have completed during lockdown.
The consensus was that during these unprecedented times, bragging is not a good look – not for any business – and content should be sensitive.
Then an estate agent, who shall remain nameless, pops up with this little gem – and I’m going to quote this word for word:
“I also think it’s laughable when I see agents posting videos with titles like “how to keep your children entertained during lockdown” or “how to exercise well during lockdown” and they think they are engaging with their audience. Parenting advice and health advice from your local estate agent… Really!”
I nearly spat my tea out (it was too early for wine), because bearing in mind the whole thread was about agents who shouldn’t be humblebragging about viewing and sales figures, this agent missed the point!
The line that really got me was “…..and they think they are engaging with their audience.”
So, why do I disagree with this opinion – other than the fact that my business is built around providing content just like this for estate agents – which was also very kindly pointed out by this agent!
Well, those agents who are currently posting content such as ‘home-schooling tips’, how to entertain the kids during lockdown’, ‘how to get your property ready for post-lockdown sale’ and so on, ARE engaging with their local community by posting content like this!
These agents are not, by any stretch of the imagination posting their content from an “I’m a professional in the parenting or health or teaching field!” position. No. They are posting their content to place themselves as thoughtful, caring members of their local community. Importantly – and this is the key – they are providing interesting, relevant and highly engaging information for their local community, who also happens to be their target audience.
Even in normal circumstances, those looking for an estate agent will rarely search online for specific information relating to estate agents in their area. So, for example, it’s unlikely someone considering putting their house on the market would search for ‘which estate agent has the biggest market share in Kent’ for instance. Vendors are not interested in data, facts and figures.
They are far more likely to search for ‘how to increase the value of my house’ or ‘how do I get my house ready for sale’. People search for content that will benefit them in some way. In this case, they are searching for information that will help them get the best valuation for their property and then achieve the best sale price!
And so, by placing your agency in front of these people, through relevant content, at the exact time they are seeking this type of information, you have a good chance of receiving an enquiry from them once they are ready to sell. They will remember you, your content and your helpfulness.
So, how does exercise, home-schooling and parenting fit in?
It’s what people are doing right now through the current pandemic. It’s what people need information about and are actively seeking online. So, while it may appear to be irrelevant to you and the housing market, it’s not. By posting content like this, you are planting the ‘seed for a lead’ later on. You’re doing the groundwork. Getting inside people’s heads. Forming a bond, Forming trust.
It is precisely this strategy, and especially during times like this, that will put pro-active estate agents ahead of the rest, making them the ones that will be remembered, ultimately leading clients to them when they are ready to buy or sell!
The property business is a people business. As a business at the heart of your community, you need to put yourself out there. And putting yourself out there involves giving your potential customers the content they want consistently.
I know that right now, you might not know what type of content to put out and may be unsure whether it’s appropriate. But, I promise you, posting supportive, helpful content is a solid plan. Not only right now either, but for the future of your agency too.
It looks like it will be another few weeks until you will be able to think about easing out of lockdown, so let me help you deliver some great content to your audience – who are still at home and still online – at an affordable cost to you. It’s not too late.