Marketing

Keep campaign overload at bay with these proven real estate marketing strategies

Leading Adelaide-based group Harris Real Estate leaves nothing to chance when it comes to tackling the busy selling season. We talk to Anna Plag about Harris Real Estate’s expanding operation.

From spring onwards it is full throttle for the real estate industry and with public holidays, sporting events and the lead-up to Christmas impacting schedules – there is a lot to juggle.

“Last year in a single month we launched around 150 properties, this year I expect a 5 to 10 per cent increase,” says Anna. “One of our marketing administrators has 16 properties to launch between today [Friday] and Tuesday.”

Harris Real Estate is not only turning over a large volume of properties for sale but they are in the process of opening a fifth agency.

“Right up until Christmas Eve agents are doing deals. The goal is to get that sold sticker up before Christmas day and people are still launching properties in December,” Anna says.

“We don’t ever want to say no to properties, we don’t want to tell a client ‘oh look we don’t have enough photographers’, or ‘we don’t have enough time to launch your property this week, it has to be the next week’.”

To deliver on this promise, Harris Real Estate runs a tight marketing operation. Anna shares the key real estate marketing strategies they put in place before the busy season kicks off.

1. Get your department prepared

It’s important your marketing department is appropriately resourced and correctly structured.

Harris Real Estate has a team of four marketing administrators who work across their agents’ property campaigns. They book the photography, videography, copywriting and floorplan services; manage client relations throughout the marketing process coordinating each step; and upon receiving the property content – upload it online and organise print and any other marketing products booked for the property.

The four marketing administrators are backed by two in-house photographers, one of whom doubles as a videographer. There are two creative team members who look after the advertising and branding side of the company.

“It’s a priority that everyone takes some time out before spring,” says Anna, “so they are 100 per cent ready for the coming selling season.”

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Harris Real Estate’s in-house photography and videography team.

2. Be flexible with your resources

When the busy season hits Harris Real Estate’s two creative team members shift their focus from company collateral over to the property campaigns. This ensures content gets produced and approved before deadline.

During the winter months the marketing team tries to complete as much of the company branding and marketing promotion work as possible, including things like Christmas cards, calendars and advertising campaigns. By getting these tasks out of the way, the team can tackle the large volume of properties being sold.

Harris Real Estate has created operational efficiencies by bringing a number of services in-house. Not only is one of their photographers a videographer but both complete floorplans.

“We are big believers in video and are known in that space, we have our monthly market updates, company profiles and can take footage of our social events and awards nights – all the things that we do outside of selling real estate,” Anna explains. “Our managing director, Phil Harris, can easily sit with the videographer and be hands on, right here in the office, it’s definitely an advantage.”

3. Nurture great supplier relationships

Developing strong relationships with quality suppliers is an essential marketing strategy. This includes content producers like copywriters and signboard suppliers, and advertising media such as realestate.com.au and local press.

“We need to be able to work really closely with all our suppliers in order to meet deadlines,” Anna says. “For example with our signboard company, if we’re approaching deadline and things aren’t going to be approved, we need to have a great working relationship with them so they will do last minute printing or adjustments for us and be flexible.”

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Harris Real Estate print their branded magazine throughout the year.

4. Build a supportive culture

Without cohesive internal working relationships processes fall apart.

Harris Real Estate’s marketing administrators work as a team to tackle the busy selling period, constant communication ensures the workload is shared across the team. The marketing department also works hard to maintain an open dialogue with the agents. This involves catching up regularly to discuss what is and isn’t working and to confirm important campaign deadlines.

“You need to have a good culture and good relationships with your agents – communication is definitely key,” Anna says. “We work really closely with our agents to try and help them and we encourage them to tell us what they need.”

5. Use time-saving software

The right software makes all the difference when it comes to accuracy and efficiency. This includes programs that manage your administration, client database, campaign progress and artwork creation.

“We use Agent Box as our CRM, you can store all your marketing text, opening times – all that sort of information, and the agents can also pull out reporting from the CRM,” Anna says. “That data then flows through to Campaigntrack [campaign management and artwork creation software], which then flows through to online advertisers and to our suppliers.”

For more information about marketing strategies that will streamline your property campaign management talk to Campaigntrack today.

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Jacqui Thompson

Jacqui has over 13 years of experience as an editor, content producer and writer for digital and print media. Specialising in real estate, marketing and lifestyle content, Jacqui is Campaigntrack's Content Marketing Editor.