Before diving into this real estate text message marketing topic, be sure to save our guides on cold emailing, cold calling, direct mail marketing, social media marketing, and using ringless voicemails.
Additionally, here are 25 lead generation ideas for real estate.
Now, let’s dive into real estate text message marketing…
As a real estate professional, you’re always on the lookout for new ways to generate leads and makes sales consistently. Have you tried real estate text message marketing yet?
As much as 62% of home buyers prefer receiving property info via text messages. Millennials and Gen X-ers, in particular, prefer communicating with real estate agents throughtexts.
With all of these people looking to get real estate information through texts, it’s obvious that you should include texting in your marketing strategy.
Benefits of real estate text message marketing
Real estate text message marketing allows you to:
Develop relationships with leads – Texting is direct and personal. It doesn’t force leads to answer immediately, which reduces pressure. Communicating with your leads through text can help you develop a relationship with them and have an easier time selling to them.
Reach more people – Nowadays, everyone has a mobile phone and can receive and read messages. The average text message open rate is 98%, with response rates hovering around 45%.
Save money – Texting is a very cost-effective way to reach leads. By focusing on text-message marketing, you can save money on printing costs and classified ad fees.
Save time – You can mass text all your leads within seconds, saving you from having to contact each of them one by one.
Convert more leads – You have a 20 times higher chance of converting a lead if you get back to them within 5 minutes vs. 30 minutes. Texting allows you to contact your leads quickly, especially if you’re using an autoresponder.
Get quick results – Most people respond to texts within 90 seconds or less. If you send your leads offers through text, you have a good chance of speeding up the entire sales process.
Get a competitive advantage – Only 5% of real estate professionals communicate through text messages. Using text message marketing will give you an advantage over your competition.
How to get started with real estate text message marketing
As you can tell, there are so many benefits that come with text message marketing that using it is practically a must for real estate businesses.
Let’s look at how you can get started with real estate text message marketing.
Build an opt-in list
You need to build an opt-in list before you can engage in text message marketing. An opt-in list consists of people that gave you explicit permission to send them marketing messages.
Here are two easy ways to get more people to join your list:
- Add your existing leads – You already have leads you communicate with through phone calls or emails. Let them know that they can start receiving updates and offersfrom you via text.
- Include a code to join your list on your marketing materials – Add a shortcode that enables people to join your list on all your promotional materials, including flyers, business cards, print ads, and property listings.
Choose the right real estate text message marketing solution
Once you have an opt-in list ready, you’ll need a text message marketing solution to help you communicate with all your leads effectively.
The two main options you have available are marketing automation tools that have an integrated text marketing solution and standalone services. Which of these options is right for you will depend on your specific needs.
In most cases, you’ll want to have these features at your disposal:
- SMS & MMS texting – You’ll need both SMS and MMS texting capability to be able to communicate with leads, as well as provide them with photos and videos of properties.
- Text inbox – A unified text inbox will allow you to manage all your text messages from a single location.
- Mass messaging – You’ll want to have the ability to mass message all your leads when a good opportunity arises.
- Drip campaigns – Your text message marketing solution should allow you to send drip campaigns to inform leads of price changes, new listings, and sold notices.
- Alphanumeric Sender ID – Providing your leads with the hottest propertyinformation means nothing if they have no idea who’s messaging them. Your textmessaging solution should allow you to set up a custom sender ID that you canuse in your campaigns.
- Reports – You should be able to view stats on sent texts, response rates, and the number of new opt-ins and opt-outs in your marketing solution. Having this information available will allow you to optimize your text message marketingcampaigns.
- Autoresponder – You’ll want to have the option of automatically responding to your leads (e.g., when they first opt in or when they reply to one of your campaigns).
- Integrations – Your text messaging solution should be able to integrate with other tools you’re using.
Perfect your message
The message copy is the most important part of your text message marketing campaign, so you need to take the time to perfect it.
You can rely on the following copywriting principles when crafting your message:
- Write as if you’re talking to a friend – Don’t use business jargon and technical terms.Write your text as if you’re messaging a friend.
- Make it simple – Don’t make your leads think too hard. They should be able to understand your message and what you want them to do straight away.
- Proofread – Make sure to proofread your text before you send it out. Having spelling or grammar errors will make you seem unprofessional, which, in turn, will make leads feel less comfortable about doing business with you.
Set a messaging schedule
Once you’ve developed the right message to send to your leads, you’ll need to set a messaging schedule.
When you’re going to text leads will depend on the specific situation.
Leads that submit an inquiry should be contacted as soon as possible, preferably within five minutes. If the leads don’t respond to your message, avoid repeatedly messaging them several days in a row.
As for sending out automated text messaging campaigns, there’s some evidence that texts sent on Wednesdays and Thursdays get the best engagement rates.
In general, you should strive to contact leads when they’re least busy. You’ll need to have a good understanding of your buyer personas to be able to do this.
Real estate text message marketing strategies
Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s look at some specific real estate text marketing strategies you can use to generate leads and make sales.
Add a keyword and shortcode to your property signs
Use your “For Sale” signs to the fullest extent by adding a keyword and shortcode to them. This will allow passersby who are interested in the property to join your opt-in list and get more information on the property by sending the property’s keyword to the listed shortcode.
Create a unique keyword for each property
Make it easier for leads to get information on a specific property by creating unique keywords for each of the properties you have for sale. The keywords you use should be short and easy to remember.
Use MMS to send property photos
Provide leads with an easy way to check out a property beforehand by sending them photos via MMS. If you have a video walkthrough of the property, you can include that as well.
Take advantage of automated follow-ups
Purchasing a home is a big decision, so it’s no wonder that leads need some time to think it over. Sending them automated text follow-ups is a great way to keep your property top-of-mind.
Send price change alerts
A slight decrease in a property’s price is often enough to push buyers into making a purchase. You can take advantage of text messaging to bulk message all interested buyers when a property’s price changes.
Inform buyers of new listings
Some buyers will want to be notified every time a new listing that meets their needs comes up. Send these leads a quick text every time you get a new listing that might interest them.
Collect information on leads
You can use automated text message campaigns to learn more about your leads, including their first and last name, their budget, and preferred home type. Once you have this information, you can follow up with relevant listings from your portfolio.
Send open house reminders
Send your leads text reminders regarding open houses. You can text them on the day the open house event is scheduled, as well as a couple of days leading up to the event.
Bulk message sellers whose properties have increased in value
If there was a recent increase in the value of properties in a particular area, you could bulk message sellers in this area to let them know that the value of their property has increased. Providing valuable information like this can help push sellers into working with you.
Stay in touch with past clients
It’s a good idea to cultivate relationships with past clients in case they need to buy or sell a property again in the future. You can do this by messaging former clients during holidays, birthdays, or other relevant events.
This will help to keep you and your business top-of-mind and increase the chances of clients deciding to work with you again.
Real estate text message marketing best practices
There are different ways you can structure your text message marketing campaigns. Howyou’re going to do it will depend on your specific strategy and goals.
However, there are some best practices you should keep in mind:
Make sure to let leads know who you are and what you do. This will help to build trust and avoid any confusion.
You should let them know what kind of messages you’ll be sending them and how often.
Give leads a way to opt out
Leads that are on your list need to be able to opt out of receiving further messages easily. In case they do opt out, you must honor their request and stop sending them messages.
Write short texts
Don’t feel the need to cram all the information in a single text. Start by sending a short text that requires leads to reply to get more information.
This will encourage back-and-forth communication and ensure that you don’t overwhelm leads.
While you should try to keep your texts fairly short, avoid sending one-word replies. These just seem rude.
People rarely ignore questions, so including a question in almost all of your texts is a smart thing to do. Make sure not to ask more than one question, though.
Only send relevant messages
Don’t message leads about properties that don’t fit their exact needs. This will only annoy them and make them not want to work with you.
Segment your list into groups so that you can send relevant messages to your leads moreeasily.
Personalize your messaging
Include the recipient’s name, location, or any other information relevant to them to make your texts feel more personal and improve the chances of getting a reply.
While abbreviations might seem like a good way to get the most out of the 160-character limit on text messages, using them increases the chances of confusing leads. Spell out most of the words and phrases you use in your text messages, and use multiple messages if you run out of space.
Include a call-to-action
A lead has given you a chance by opening and reading your text. Don’t waste this opportunity by not moving the conversation forward.
Make sure to let the lead know what they need to do to move on to the next step.
Avoid texting bad news
If a buyer was outbid or a deal fell through, don’t inform your leads about this through a text message. If you absolutely need to deliver bad news, call them instead.
Make replying to your texts as low-effort as possible
Don’t force leads to write out long responses since this decreases the chances of them deciding to reply. Use yes/no questions whenever possible to enable leads to reply with a single word.
Don’t message leads too often
Limit promotional broadcast texts to four per month. Any more than this, and you can risk annoying leads and increasing your opt-out rate.
Text message marketing regulations you need to be aware of
Before you start using real estate SMS marketing, you should learn about text messagemarketing regulations to avoid getting into trouble.
Telephone Consumer Protection Act (USA)
If you’re in the US, you’ll want to get familiar with the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA).
The TCPA was passed by the United States Congress to restrict telephone solicitations. The act limits the use of text messages, automatic dialing systems, prerecorded voice messages, and fax machines.
Here are some of TCPA’s main points you’ll need to keep in mind when sending text messages to leads:
- You need to obtain explicit consent from an individual before you can send them marketing text messages, even if your business already has a relationship with said individual.
- All the texts you send need to include your identity, as well as instruction on how recipients can opt out of receiving your texts.
- It’s illegal to text people asking them to opt in if they haven’t done so yet.
- Sending marketing messages before 8 AM or after 9 PM local time is prohibited.
If a business violates the TCPA, an individual can sue them for up to $500 for each violation, seek an injunction, or both.
The Spam Act (Australia)
Australian businesses that want to engage in text message marketing need to familiarizethemselves with the Spam Act.
The Spam Act was passed by the Australian Parliament in 2003. It sets certain rules regarding text and email messaging, as well as other forms of electronic communication.
The Spam Act differs from the TCPA in two notable ways:
- If an individual has an existing relationship with your business, opt-in isn’t required to send them marketing messages.
- You’re free to message contacts from a list that you bought from another business if those contacts agreed to be contacted by third parties. Note that in the case of a complaint, it’s your obligation to prove that consent exists. This includes providing information on where consent was given, when, how, and by who.
- Messages need to contain your name and business contact details.
- You need to provide a free or low-cost way for recipients to opt out of receiving your messages.
The Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations (UK)
In the UK, the Information Commissioner’s Office established Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations (PECR) which regulate individuals’ rights regarding various aspects of electronic communication.
Here are a few notable things to remember from PECR:
- You may only message individuals after receiving their explicit consent, unless they’ve already engaged with your business and provided their information. In the case of a complaint, you’ll need to prove that consent was given in some form or another.
- All your text messages need to contain instructions for opting out.
Businesses breaching PECR can be fined for up to £500,000.
Real estate text message marketing scripts
We’re going to end this guide by giving you a few real estate text message marketing scripts that have worked well for other real estate professionals.
Text Message Scripts for buyer leads
Hi [Lead’s Name], re:[Property Address], what’s the best time for me to call? [Your Name]
[Lead’s Name], I see you like [Property Address]. Awesome! When would you like to see it? [Your Name]
Hi [Lead’s Name], I see you’re looking to move into the _____ area! What brings you to this part of town? Any questions? – [Your Name]
Hi [Lead’s Name]! Haven’t heard back from you in a little while and wanted to let you know there are a few more homes in your price range that hit the market. Can I send those your way?
Text Message Scripts for seller leads
Just received your home eval request, [Lead’s Name]! Is there any other information you would like to share about your home?
Thanks for your inquiry, [Lead’s Name]! When is a good time to chat about getting your home sold?
Hi, [Lead’s Name]! Thanks for reaching out! If you could have your home sold by a certain date, what date would that be?
Start generating leads and sales with real estate text message marketing
Text message marketing is a great way to both generate and stay in touch with real estate leads.
It allows you to develop relationships with your leads, as well as save time and money while reaching more people. Text message marketing delivers quick results and gives you a competitive advantage. It also enables you to convert more leads by being able to follow-up with interested parties very quickly.
Before you can start engaging in text message marketing, you need to build an opt-in list which consists of people that gave you permission to send them marketing messages. After building a list, you’ll need to choose a text message marketing solution. When looking for the right text message marketing tool, try to find one that supports SMS and MMS texting, mass messaging, and drip campaigns (such as DealBloom).
If you want your text message marketing campaigns to be successful, you’ll need to work on creating great messages.
When composing a text, write as if you’re talking to a friend. Don’t overcomplicate your texts and make sure to proofread them to remove any grammar or spelling mistakes. Try to follow up with leads as soon as possible, preferably within five minutes of receiving an inquiry.
There are a number of strategies you can use to take advantage of text message marketing to the fullest extent. These include sending price change alerts, using MMS messages to provide leads with property photos, sending open house reminders, and bulk messaging sellers whose properties have increased in value.
When messaging leads for the first time, make sure to introduce yourself and give them a way to opt out of receiving your messages. Write short texts and use questions to try to engage your leads. Remember not to message them about properties that don’t fit their needs.
Personalize your messaging with the recipient’s name or location. Avoid using abbreviationsas to not confuse leads. Always include a call-to-action in your messages and avoid texting bad news.
Finally, make sure that you study text message marketing regulations such as the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), the Spam Act, and the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations (PECR) to ensure that you don’t break any laws and get yourself into legal trouble.
- 25 Lead Generation Ideas for Real Estate that Actually Work - January 9, 2020
- How To Use Ringless Voicemails to Generate Real Estate Leads - January 8, 2020
- Real Estate Text Message Marketing: The Complete Guide - January 8, 2020
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