Keep Doing It
First of all, keep marketing, no matter what. Like they say in show business, “the show must go on” which can also be said to be true for real estate. While the pandemic has changed how the world and your business operate, things haven’t stopped, they’ve only changed. Now that the initial shock has worn off, we can focus on adapting to the new landscape. But, what’s the best way to handle this enormous change? How should you adjust your marketing strategy? And, how do you transition to a virtual world? People are going to continue moving and needing help from real estate agents and broker ages, but there’s no doubt you’ll have to adapt your approach. Parker Associates and PTC Computer Solutions has looked to some newly compiled research and tips from real estate experts to help you form a marketing and communications plan for the coming months.
Your Brand Matters, Especially Now
84%of people want brand advertising to focus on “how products and services can help people cope with pandemic-related life challenges.”
A recent survey from Edelman, Brand Trust and the Coronavirus Pandemic, showed that people really care how brands are responding to this global event. The bottom line is that how you act and communicate throughout this crisis will impact your brand in both the short – and long-term. The brand trust survey also highlighted a few other points of interest: Over half of survey respondents (54%) said they’re not interested in new products unless they are designed to help with their pandemic- related life challenges. People want compassionate connection and a genuine, human approach. 84%want brands to use their social media channels to facilitate a sense of community. W hat we do now will be remembered long after the pandemic is behind us. It’s clear that the public expects a lot from brands – they want us to step up, help out and create space for a virtual community. But, how do you do this in a way that feels right for your brand?
Communicating in a Crisis
There are a few simple principles to stick to with crisis communication. Here are some guidelines to help you make a communication plan so your brand can sound its best.
Lead with empathy
Everyone is experiencing the pandemic differently. Some people are glad to have more time to spend at home with their kids, some have lost their jobs, and others are sick or have lost loved ones. Make sure you’re using a tone that will speak to a wide range of experiences – be kind, empathetic and thoughtful in all your messaging.
Create an emergency response team
Round up your best and brightest, and let each per son handle part of your communications. With things changing so quickly, having a designated team will help you respond to things efficiently.
As things change, you’ll want to offer timely updates on business hours, closures, re-openings and new protocols. Decide which form of communication is best: text, email, social media, website updates?
Focus on facts
There’s a lot of speculation right now. Rather than add another voice to the chorus, just stick to the facts in your messaging. Focus only on what’s known for sure about what’s happening in the present moment.
Adapt based on the current stage of the crisis
Things are changing of ten and will vary by state, county, community, etc. Prepare to be agile and respond quickly to what’s going on in your area. Do you have tentative plans for different levels of re-opening? Or, potentially closing again if there’s a flare-up? While you can’t predict how ever y thing will go, try to prepare for different scenarios as much as you’re able to.
Build a central communication hub
Make your team’s job easier by building out a central communication hub where necessary assets and templates that facilitate your communication strategy will live. For example, at PTC Computer Solutions, each team – marketing, sales, customer support and so on – operate with their own internal hub of tem plates, so each team member can easily draft up whatever they need based on the circumstance they’re responding to.
Keeping things in one place will allow content to be updated quickly and easily as circumstances change. If anyone needs to send an email or create a social media post, they can grab a template from the hub and send out branded messaging super fast.
Keep your messaging consistent
One of the most frustrating aspects of the pandemic is the amount of differing information out there. Do your part to curb the spread of misinformation. Check any information you send out with reliable resources like the CDC or WHO.
It’s also extremely important to avoid PR snafus (always, but especially now). Pay close attention to make sure your messaging is empathetic. I f you can, run things past another set of eyes to make sure nothing comes across as insensitive. Make sure to lock down important messaging in your newsletters and templates to make sure no off -brand messaging or misinformation is getting out there.
Leverage digital marketing channels
Digital marketing channels offer the simplest way to reach a large number of people. Social media posts, emails and adding updates to your website are all great ways to keep people informed.
Audit planned marketing and promotions
Reevaluate the communications and promotions you had planned before the pandemic. Is now the right time to send them? Do you need to modify any of the messaging to reflect the current climate?
Show how you’re giving back
People want to see how your brand is reaching out and giving back. Get together with your team and brainstorm how you can support your community. Your initiatives will not only help your local community? They’ll create PR opportunities for your brand to show the value it offers.
Real Estate Marketing Strategies for Covid-19
While the real estate market has slowed, it hasn’t stopped by any means. To set yourself up for success, you’ll need a plan for providing the same value to agents and clients that they’re used to.
Empower agents to do their job remotely
Set your agents up with the tools they need to do their job remotely. If they rely on the marketing department for a lot of their design needs, consider a platform that will let them choose from approved templates to create their own collateral.
Adopt digital distribution channels
With less face time, you’ll need different ways to get content in front of clients in a meaningful way. What can you do to create engaging virtual home tours? How can you translate your brand’s strengths to the digital world? The more thorough and interactive your content is, the happier your clients will be.
Stand by your brand
Adjusting to a new day- to-day is going to be uncomfortable, but the right protocols and tools can ease the transition. If anything, these challenges will show the mettle of your brand and shine light on your strengths and areas that can be improved. For the time being, we should all focus our efforts on communication that’s clear, consistent and empathetic.
PTC Computer Solutions has you covered. A simple consultation and audit of your website will quickly help us identify what’s needed so you can get on par with the rest of the world. Contact us directly and we’ll ensure you have the best consultants working for you available anywhere in the world, and we’re all here locally in the United States.
Parker Associates has worked extensively through the years on Multifamily housing demand and affordability. It’s always been an issue and likely always will be.
The REMA Team is an alliance of professionals in the real estate industry focused on research, data, and how it can be used in marketing and sales with our expertise in understanding and interpreting the data we gather for our clients. We focus on ensuring that visualizations are clear and accurate, giving decision-makers confidence in their choices. Data is data, but visualizing the data is what makes the difference. Explore both the spatial and non-spatial data in several different formats to understand it fully such as mapping, charting, and tabular. Interpretive data follows in qualitative, quantitative, and temporal data formats. Understand what will suit your situation best. We’d enjoy the opportunity to connect with you. Contact us directly to discuss your personal situation.
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David WB Parker is a principal of Parker Associates of Jacksonville, Florida, marketing consultants to the real estate industry; President of PTC Computer Solutions, IT Specialist, and an active real estate sales professional with Barclay’s Real Estate Group based in Jacksonville, FL. He can be reached at 904-607-8763 or via email firstname.lastname@example.org.