How Realtors Can Benefit From Mobile Marketing


As is the case with virtually every other industry, real estate is growing increasingly mobile. By that we mean that home sellers and buyers are more likely to go their phones first when creating or searching for listings. Could we have imagined just a decade ago using our phones to buy and sell homes? Just as the internet changed the way we create and view home listings, the existence of smartphones and mobile applications have changed it again. Real estate apps like Zillow or Realtor make it easier than have to search for homes and 44% of smartphone owners say they’ve done just that. For those in the real estate business, they can no longer afford to ignore mobile. And with each passing year, ignoring mobile will mean you’re missing out on more and more potential business. With that in mind, here’s how realtors can use mobile marketing to achieve more success.

Invest in SMS marketing

Gone are the days when buyers waited for the realtor to show them ones. More than half of home buyers find online listings on their own before even reaching out to a realtor. You can save yourself a lot of time by setting up an SMS campaign where each property you sell as a registered shortcode and prospective buyers can send off a text containing a keyword to that shortcode to get on the list to receive updates about that particular property. This way, your list of interested buyers is managed automatically by themselves and they can remove themselves by opting out so you don’t have to keep spending your time trying to reach people that are no longer interested.

Adopt a mobile first approach to web design

Though DIY website builders like Weebly and Wix have come a long way when it comes to mobile-friendly design–you build from a template and the website host detects the device being used to view the site and adjusts accordingly–you can do even better by adopting a mobile first approach. Think about what your mobile customers are trying to accomplish when they use their smartphone to view listings on your website. People are five times more likely to leave a website if it’s not easy to navigate on a mobile device. Make sure any links are far enough apart that people won’t actually click over to the wrong page and make sure your contact information is displayed prominently throughout the website. Make sure your phone number is click-to-call so you make it as easy as possible for prospective clients to go from your website to speaking with you on the phone.

Get on all the right apps

Nearly 70% of home buyers will use a mobile app at some point to look at listings. That doesn’t mean you need to go out and create an app for your real estate company. In fact you probably shouldn’t. But you should make sure that your listings are appearing on the most popular real estate apps out there or a sizable part of your target audience may never see them if they’re using apps and not your website.

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The three biggest mobile marketing mistakes your small business can make

Mobile is the future of advertising. With more than three-quarters of American now owning smartphones, it’s become the most effective way for businesses to communicate with and market to their audience. SMS-Marketing-Mistakes-600x398As businesses rush to keep up with the ever-advancing mobile technology, it’s easy to make mistakes along the way. That’s inevitable. But these three mistakes are the worst of the worst and should be avoided at all costs.

Not optimizing for mobile

The year 2016 was the year mobile web traffic surpassed non-mobile web traffic. With each passing year, mobile web traffic will put distance between it and traditional web traffic. In short, more and more people are accessing the web on tiny screens as opposed to bigger ones. Despite this, there are still many business websites that are designed solely to be viewed on computers or laptops. This creates an unpleasant experience for people trying to access it from a tablet and especially a smartphone. Pinching, zooming, squinting, and waiting for slow loading times wear out smartphone users quickly and many will leave the website never to return again. Every day your website isn’t optimized for mobile is a day you’re losing potential customers. Not only do non mobile-friendly sites annoy customers, they’re more likely to be ignored by search engines like Google that utilize advanced algorithms to give preference to websites over others and one of the things they look at is mobile optimization.

Not using the SMS marketing channel

Of all the mobile marketing channels out there, SMS is the oldest and most effective and important. While some may see it as old fashioned and pass it up in favor of in-app advertising or even developing new apps, SMS marketing needs to be a part of your strategy–a big part. Texting is far cheaper than the cost to advertise in apps or to develop an app. It’s also more effective since 95% of all texts are opened and read within three minutes of being received.

Not allocating enough of your marketing budget for mobile

Mobile marketing needs to be getting the majority of your digital ad spending. Businesses will spend more than 100 billion dollars globally on mobile marketing in 2017. That accounts for just over half of all digital advertising spending. By 2020, mobile marketing will account for 75% of digital ad spending or more. Businesses are recognizing the power of mobile and any business that wants to keep up will have to do the same.

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How to use SMS Marketing to Drive User Engagement


SMS is a channel unlike any other in the world of marketing. Yet too many marketers and business owners are using it just as they would any other digital marketing channels. Mobile marketing isn’t digital marketing for smaller screens because consumers use mobile devices like smartphones and tablets in very different ways than they use a television or computer. The most effective mobile marketing strategies take advantage of the unique qualities of mobile devices including user engagement.

Mobile, and by extension, SMS should be encouraging interaction between brands and customers, but so many are just using it to push for sales by offering deals, coupons, and promotional messages. Here are some different ways to use SMS marketing that will lead to more user engagement.

Embedded hyperlinks

Most people know that SMS boasts a much higher open rate (98%) compared to email (about 20%). But many forget that SMS also has a much better click-through rate, about 36% compared to email’s 3%. For whatever reason, consumers are 12 times more likely to click on a link when it’s included in a text as opposed to an email. Including a link to a mobile-friendly website or a social media page in a text message is an invitation to customers to engage with the brand on another level. It will lead to “likes” and better social media presence as well as increased web traffic and sales.

Two-factor authentication

Another level of security beyond just having to enter a password greatly increases the security of credit card information and any other sensitive information on a private account. Your customers will appreciate a two-factor authentication where a text message comes through on their phone that includes a four- or five-digit number that they have to enter on their computer to complete the login process. It’s a small thing but it’s just one more way that customers are asked to complete an action in response to a text.

Customer-satisfaction surveys

Short surveys where respondents can give their answers by simply typing in a number between one to ten are a convenient way for customers to offer feedback. Not only do you get valuable information about your customer base and how you can better meet their needs, you also are getting them to interact with your brand as opposed to just being a passive recipient of promotional material.


Contests are another great way to get your customers to text you rather than the other way around. Rules for entry might include sending a photo via text or perhaps a one or two sentence explanation as to why they love a certain product or service. Winning photographs or statements can then be used as testimonials for your brand.

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How to increase web traffic with SMS marketing


Though SMS marketing is a powerful advertising channel in its own right, it’s most effective when it’s part of a larger marketing strategy that seamlessly integrates other channels like social media and a mobile friendly website. Ideally, your SMS campaign is driving web traffic and social media presence in addition to improving sales directly through promotional offers and coupons. Here are a few ways to make sure that your SMS marketing efforts are accomplishing these aims.

Include links

If you want to use your SMS channel to drive traffic to your website, then a logical first step is to include a link to your website. It reduces the number of steps it takes for a text message recipient to get to your site. Instead of closing their messaging app, opening their browser and searching for your website by name, a link can take them to any landing page of your choosing. Similarly, you can include links to social media profiles to make it easier for your SMS recipients to find you on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or other popular platforms.

Include incentives

Simply providing links alone isn’t going to drive traffic. You also have to provide recipients with some kind of value in exchange for clicking on the link. In other words, they need a good reason to want to do it. An obvious incentive would be some kind of deal or coupon though even the promise of exciting or interesting information such as a new product announcement can act as a kind of incentive.

Use a good SMS marketing platform

Don’t attempt to run your SMS marketing campaign on your own. Bulk SMS platforms help automate the process of sending text messages. For instance, they allow you to create a message in the present, but time it to be sent at a future time or date. But most important if your goal is to drive web traffic, SMS marketing platforms provide you with good metrics that you can use to gauge the success of your efforts. By looking at the click-through rates on the included links in text messages, you can see what kinds of incentives are getting people to click and which ones aren’t so you can adjust as needed.

Keep it short

The first “S” in SMS stands for “short.” Customers expect text messages to be short. Longer texts may be broken up into multiple texts by the recipient’s cell phone providers which may cause them to not read the full text. That means if your link is closer to the bottom, customers may never see it or lose interest before they get to it.

Tell them what you want them to do

Don’t be afraid to be direct with your audience. Don’t just include a link and hope they click on it. Include a call to action—tell them to click on the link and tell them what they’ll get in return when they do.

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Customer Service: What not to do


One of the most important things your business can do is make sure your customer service is on par. Regardless of everything else, if you have good, valuable customer service representatives who know what they are doing, you will be okay. However, bad customer service can cost you thousands of customers and millions of dollars in lawsuits. And we’ve seen many examples of bad customer recently.

Don’t force unrealistic expectations

It’s good to set goals and encourage positive behaviors in your company. That being said, the stress of unrealistic goals, especially those tied to job security. Wells Fargo is one example where unrealistic expectations caused employees to create thousands of duplicate checking and savings accounts without the permission of customers in order to meet those goals. After having to pay $190 million in fines and losing many customers and employees, Wells Fargo is now working to promote trust with new ad campaigns to be launched in the coming months.

Don’t lie to or deceive your customers

Salespeople used to be able to get away with lying to their customers to make a sale. And while it was not the best practice, it didn’t really affect the company. But with smartphones making the internet so readily available, lying to your customers can get you into big trouble. Or at least that’s what Volkswagen discovered when it created a technology to cheat emissions testing. In reality, cars were emitting nitrogen oxide pollutants up to 40 times above what is allowed in the US. The car-maker has now purchased back over half of the polluting vehicles, but it is having a very difficult time regaining customer trust.

Avoid physical altercations with customers

Really, avoid physical touching of customers in all circumstances unless the job requires it. Unfortunately, the recen incident at United where a customer was literally dragged off a plane, so some flight crew could take his seat left a sour taste in the mouths of customers. Whether or not United was in the right when forcibly removing the passenger from the plane doesn’t really matter because in the eyes of the people who watched the video of a man being physically removed and hurt in the process, it was completely inappropriate.

As United is trying desperately to respond and fix customer relationships (which hasn’t been smooth sailing), more stories keep emerging making matters worse. One of which was the couple who was recently kicked off a flight on the way to their own wedding in Costa Rica.

Don’t ignore problems

If you have a problem, it is better to address it immediately with customers and get it fixed than try to ignore it, so you don’t lose business. Word will get out fast about the problem, and customers will be mad they heard it from someone else instead of directly from the source. Chipotle had an issue with this when a food poisoning debacle was ignored instead of addressed immediately. More customers got sick than necessary, and it meant the restaurant lost a lot of business. Had the company simply come out, used text marketing to let their customers know about the problem, and focused on resolving it, fewer customers would have been lost.

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Addressing the Challenges of SMS Message Marketing


Marketing through SMS messaging can be a challenge. When you think about general marketing, you might think of billboards, television commercials, newspaper and magazine ads, and anything else. Smart and strategic marketing can be powerful because the format is so versatile. You can grab people with stunning images and comedic or thought-provoking text or dialogue. General marketing might employ a team of top-notch designers, or photographers and videographers, or writers. And marketing projects grab the attention of audiences. With so much versatility and potential for creative marketing mediums, it might appear to be a challenge to market to audiences through SMS messaging, or sending a simple text to someone’s phone.
Limitations of SMS Messaging
Text messages are 160 characters in length, which means your marketing messaging has to be 160 characters or less. That’s not 160 words, that’s 160 characters. SMS messages leave little to no space for images, videos, audio clips, or wordy prose to capture the attention of your audience and convert them into a customer.
While it may seem to be a challenge, the benefits of SMS messaging marketing outweigh the struggles and costs. People are constantly on their phones, and text messages go straight through. SMS messages generally pop up over internet browsers, over streaming videos, and even through phone calls. That means that an SMS message can cut straight through everything else and reach the receiver. With a magazine, they might not even glance at the printed ad. But everyone checks their text messages.
Messages Should Provide Value to your Audience
With text messages being short and concise, it is important to make your messages short and concise while providing immediate value to the receiver. If you are promoting a sale or product, encourage your audience to act now to receive the sale or promotion or special product. Text messages are effective at reaching your audience, but if you do not offer anything for your audience to act on when they receive the message, then they can easily discard the message and do nothing.
Entrepreneur contributor Susan Gunelius notes the importance of offering something of value. “No one wants to receive texts from a company unless the messages offer something of immediate value. Because text messaging is an instantaneous medium, you should include real-time offers.” Your message should create a sense of urgency for the audience. You want them to think that if they act now, they will receive an exclusive and incredible offer just for them.
Power in the Brevity of an SMS Message
Despite the fact that SMS messages are short, they have the advantage of being efficient and powerful. Concise messages that offer a unique value to your audience will encourage them to act quickly. Avoid thinking that SMS messages are limiting, but embrace the fact that SMS messages are impactful, as long as they are appropriate to the audience and provide something of value.
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Rumors of major iPhone changes


We are still quite a ways away from the release of the 10th anniversary edition of the iPhone, but there are already plenty of rumors about what customers can expect. With few changes in the last few years, fans are dying to get something unique. And if the rumors are true, that might be exactly what Apple delivers. Here are the rumors of what to expect in the new phone release.

Three different phone options

The biggest rumor about the iPhone 8 is that it will be released in 3 new phone options. Two of these will simply be upgraded versions of the iPhone 7, and they will be named the 7s and 7s Plus. The two upgraded versions will only have minor changes. Of course you can expect the standard upgrades that come with every phone such as a better, faster camera and a faster processor.

The third phone, rumored to be named the iPhone X for the 10th anniversary, is anticipated to have huge changes to it, including the following:

  •     All-glass design
  •     Curved organic light-emitting diode screen
  •     5.8” screen, though the curve will make it more compact than current large iPhones
  •     Home button and side phone buttons moved beneath the screen to make them all touch-based instead of physical buttons
  •     Wireless charging (which might also be added to the 7s and 7s Plus)
  •     3D Touch module
  •     Iris scanner for unlocking the phone
  •     $1,000 price tag (due to the cost of the 3D Touch module and the wireless charging stations)

Can they get away with such a high price tag?

The real question is whether or not the $1,000  price tag is justified. People may not be willing to pay so much for a phone that has upgrades they may not want. For example, people who want to do wireless charging already can buy cases that give them the same functionality. And most people don’t even know what a 3D Touch Module is let alone know how to use it.

But it is Apple, which means they can get away with pretty much anything they want and will always have loyal fans. Plus, the iPhone 7 was priced close to $1,000 before any discounts or carrier deals, so it isn’t that far-fetched to see such a high price tag on the newest iPhone 8.

Other smartphone manufacturers competing

Rumors are that other smartphone manufacturers are also working very hard to come up with redesigned smartphones including the new Galaxy S8 which is anticipated to have huge external upgrades. The Galaxy S7 already has wireless charging available on it, so Apple may be playing a little bit of catch up in that regard.

But with all these changes to smartphones, texting is still a very big, important part of mobile. It just goes to show that text marketing will always be a good way to communicate with your customers. While texting itself gets smarter with chatbot, the method of communication will never go away.

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