Only one in five agents actually possesses the skills required to achieve strong results from digital marketing strategies, according to new research.
Digital Marketing in Real Estate 2021 – Uncovering the Skill Gap is a new report from ActivePipe which has discovered a direct correlation between agents listing and selling high volumes of property and strong skills in digital marketing.
The report discovered that while 93 per cent of agents perceive digital marketing as important to their current success, just 20 per cent of agents actually possess strong digital marketing skills.
One of the most important factors that determines an agent’s successful and effective use of digital marketing is implementing a “clear digital marketing strategy”.
But ActivePipe found that just 13 per cent of agents are actually putting together such plans. This rises to 40 per cent among top-performing agents.
ActivePipe’s CEO, Ash Farrugia, has flagged that “with the recent release of REB’s Top 100 Agents report, it’s important to try to understand what the top agents do that helps them to outperform their peers”.
“Our research found that the majority of top performers rated their digital marketing skills as good or excellent and were more than three times more likely to have a clear, written digital marketing strategy, when compared to lower performers,” he outlined.
In this report, “the revelations around the links between agent performance and their expertise in digital marketing is clear”, ActivePipe explained.
The research also showed that agents with strong digital marketing strategies are more likely to use blogs, articles and videos as part of their marketing mix.
Those agents also reported better results in lead generation from their email and website marketing.
The findings, and especially a lack of written strategy among the cohort surveyed, led Mr Farrugia to consider that agents do need to possess a greater understanding of the digital marketing space.
He acknowledges agents find different types of digital media “confusing” and there’s very much a need “for greater understanding about what each of these elements can do and how they work together for the best results”.
“From email marketing, social media to company websites and online advertising, there’s a lot to learn,” he conceded.
“But the research shows that it is a clear way to achieve market dominance.”
So, how can agents get the upper hand?
The report suggested that the single most important thing you can do as a real estate agency or agent trying to master the digital marketing space is to take the time to create an effective strategy, and to provide the resources it needs to work.
That strategy “should be backed by accountability within your team, training to make sure they have the skills and time to allow them to do the work”.
According to real estate coach Josh Phegan, it’s vital that agents using digital marketing techniques start with both a clear strategy, and a clear set of metrics, “so then you can adjust until you hit your target”.
Not only do you have to plan on how you capture data, you then need a plan that outlines what you do with it.
“You have specific customer sets like past clients, landlords and market appraisals. Each requires a different approach including tone of voice, frequency and content,” the coach noted.
“The secret is to write to one person, not to 100.”