Erica Christoffer is a multimedia journalist and contributing editor with REALTOR® Magazine. In addition to writing print and online articles, Erica oversees the magazine's Broker to Broker content, co-manages the 30 Under 30 program, and manages the YPN Lounge. Connect with her via email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Low-Cost Marketing Mania
Get noticed in 2014 with these six tools that will help show off your brand.
January 13, 2014
When assembling your marketing plan for 2014, you want to include tools that demonstrate your credibility while thoughtfully and efficiently showing off your brand. Here are five clever, low-cost tech tools to help you get noticed.
E-Mail for Grownups
Rackspace Which reads better? JaneSmith@yahoo.com or JaneSmith@smithrealty.com? Branded e-mail addresses are more professional and memorable—so why are you still using free e-mail accounts for your real estate business?
Rackspace, a REALTOR Benefits® Partner, offers a wide array of hosted e-mail services for individual agents or for brokers to purchase for their office. Secure and professional, this e-mail branding gets your name in front of potential clients with every message. Plus, NAR members receive a 10 percent discount off these monthly services: Rackspace E-mail, Microsoft Exchange (which automatically syncs with Outlook), Rackspace Archiving (unlimited mailbox storage on Rackspace servers), and Hosted SharePoint (a file-sharing collaboration tool). Discounted e-mail service starts at $1.80 per month. www.rackspace.com/email-hosting/nar
In This Guide:
Animoto Once you have the right video equipment, it’s time to tackle the editing.
Animoto is an easy DIY editing platform allowing you to design custom-branded title slides, assemble clips, create chapters, add photos, write captions, and choose from over 2,000 music tracks, saving you a bundle compared to hiring a crew.
Video is a great way to show off your listings and to introduce yourself and your market to potential clients. Create seasonal greetings, profile a neighborhood, or film client recommendations.
When it comes to virtual tours, remember always to check with your MLS for their rules concerning virtual tour branding. Most prohibit virtual tours that display company logos or agent names due to broker reciprocity requirements. But you are free to use branded videos on your blog, website, and social channels to engage your followers.
Animoto Pro is $249 per year. Animoto ProPremium gives users more personalization options and analytics data and includes a Vimeo Pro account, for $499 per year. animoto.com
HDHat.com So, you want to get started making your own marketing videos, but you don’t have the funds to drop a couple thousand on camera equipment. Well, your iPhone might be the light at the end of the camera lens, so to speak.
The iPhone 5S includes an 8-megapixel camera— you just need a little help using it to its full potential. The folks at hdhat.com have assembled mobile movie kits that turn your iPhone or iPad into a video production device. For example, the “iPhone 5 or 5s Movie System” includes a 58mm lens, and a tripod-mountable adapter case for the iPhone lens adapter, a mini shotgun microphone with a 20-foot extension cable, a Sony tripod, and a 160 LED video light, all for $359.95. www.hdhat.com
Get Inside Your Twitter Feed
Simply Measured Who are your Twitter followers? Where do they live? What do they care about? And how well are you responding to them? Simply Measured has an à la carte offering of free reports that will help you answer these questions and more. For larger companies, Simply Measured offers professional plans starting at $500 per month that include in-depth Excel reports, Google Analytics integration, Klout and Bit.ly link tracking, and analysis of multiple social channels with thousands of followers. simplymeasured.com
Tweriod.com Get the most traction from your Twitter account by finding out the best times to tweet. Tweriod.com is a free Twitter tool that analyzes up to 1,000 of your followers and tells you the best time of day to reach the most people for optimal engagement. www.tweriod.com
Print Isn’t Dead
Ink People don’t love junk mail, but they do love thoughtful cards and notes. Try Ink is an iPhone, iPad, and Android app that lets you create beautiful, personalized greeting cards. Send a heartfelt thank-you to your clients who just closed on their new home. Drop in that photo you took of them standing next to the Sold sign. Choose from hundreds of customizable card designs and mail directly from your mobile device. Try it for birthdays, move-in anniversaries, or holidays. Cards start at $1.99. sincerely.com/ink