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Millennials Turn to Video When Making Purchases

gadget-useGeneration Y is a demographic coveted by retailers and marketers for their purchasing power. Millennials, the generation born between 1980-2000, will spend more than $200 billion annually starting in 2017, and $10 trillion in their lifetimes. According to Animoto, an online video creation application, new data from the 2015 Animoto Online and Social Video Marketing Study reveals video is no longer optional for brands and businesses looking to market to millennials. The study revealed seven in 10 are likely to watch a video when shopping online and 80 percent find video helpful when researching a purchase decision online.

In an era defined by instant access, powerful consumer voices and expectations of brand transparency, millennials’ standards are higher for businesses than ever before. Brands must use new mediums and know not only how to reach them where they are online, but also according to their preferences in order to tap into that spending power. Animoto surveyed 1,051 U.S. consumers and published an infographic in conjunction with the study.

Millennials Use Video to Make Purchase Decisions

Increasing exposure to video has impacted Gen Y’s view on video in the purchasing process. Compared to baby boomers, millennials are 150 percent more likely to comparison shop with video while shopping for a home, and 146 percent more likely to watch a video if it’s available on a company’s site while shopping online, and four in every five find video helpful during initial research for a purchase decision. Brands must strategically incorporate video into their online presence to assist this generation throughout the purchase cycle.

  • 85 percent find video home tours helpful.
  • Nearly three-quarters find video helpful when comparison shopping.
  • Seven in 10 are likely to watch a company video when shopping online.
  • 69 percent find video helpful post-purchase to research additional items from the same company.
  • Nearly one-third find it helpful to watch video to learn more about a company before making a purchase.
  • Millennials are 264 percent more likely to share videos about a product, service or company while shopping online than baby boomers.

Video Improves Traditional Marketing to Millennials

Nearly two-thirds of millennials (62 percent) prefer to watch a video from a company instead of reading text, and more than half are likely to watch a video from a brand if they receive it in an email. With this directive, businesses can incorporate video into traditional components of the marketing mix to effectively reach Gen Y-ers.

  • Six out of 10 prefer to watch a company video over reading a company newsletter.
  • 53 percent are more likely to read a newsletter from a company if video is included.

Millennials Connect With Brands on Social Media and Mobile

Businesses must ensure video content is optimized across the devices and channels millennials frequent most. Nearly half (48 percent) only watch videos on their mobile device. Millennial engagement with brands on social media is high; on Facebook, 84 percent follow brands.

  • 76 percent follow companies on YouTube.
  • Nearly half of millennials (47 percent) follow companies or brands on Twitter.
  • 45 percent prefer to watch video on their mobile device rather than on a laptop or desktop.
  • Four in 10 millennials (42 percent) follow companies or brands on Instagram.

Source: animoto.com

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2015. All rights reserved.

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Listing Presentations: Leaving a Lasting Impression

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You know that old saying, “You only have one chance to make a first impression”? It could not be truer in the real estate market. With competition in the marketplace being fierce, it’s critical that you make a lasting first impression on prospects.

During a listing presentation, you convey your local market expertise, but you must ensure prospective clients value your opinion above all others. Leaving behind an incredible, comprehensive report can be the difference between getting the listing and losing it to a competitor.

To create an impressive report, here are a few key elements that should be included:

Current and Accurate Information

Clients are not concerned with what the market did a year or two ago, unless it is in comparison to today. They want to know what the market looks like currently, and even where it appears to be headed. The same can be says for school and flood zones; people want to see the boundaries of today, not twelve months ago. And most importantly, this data needs to be accurate. All too often agents unknowingly create reports with incorrect information.


Everyone likes pictures. Whether of a lush backyard or a remodeled kitchen, people like to see how their property compares in pictures, not just in the number of bedrooms, square footage or lot size.

Easy-to-understand Data

We all know that data can be overwhelming. Percentage of the average list price vs. sales price? This can be too much for some clients to comprehend; yet it paints a picture that is important for them to understand. As with pictures giving a clear representation of the property, charts and graphs can do that with data. Sometimes it just takes a line graph showing an increase for clients to grasp otherwise challenging data.

Your Marketing Plan for Their Home

The number one thing sellers want from an agent is to market their home.* Anyone and everyone will put the home in the MLS and on free listing sites, but showing how you will advertise the home above and beyond that should be part of your listing presentation. A local real estate magazine, a mobile site, a yard sign with a text code, brochures, and mailings – Include these things in your listing presentation and you will win more sellers.

*2014 National Association of REALTORS® 2014 Profile of Home Buyers and Seller

Your Own Personal Branding

Ultimately, an effective report is branded to both the agent and the broker. Clients should never have to guess who provided them with such a remarkable report. From an agent photo, to contact information, to a broker logo, proper branding can make the difference between a phone call and the recycle bin.

Now that we know the key elements for an effective report, let’s look at the best way to create one that is inclusive of all the elements. Agents have many options for creating reports: the MLS, a CMA program, Leads Activity Results (LAR), and many more. The key is finding a source that contains each of the elements above. The MLS is a great source for current and accurate listing information, comps and photos. A specialized CMA program gives agents the ability to easily adjust the comps, list price and information like seller’s proceeds. The Leads Activities and Results Dashboard, when advertising with The Real Estate Book, allows REALTORS® to view, track, measure and update the status of generated leads.

Regardless of the platform you choose to create your report, by including providing current, accurate and easy-to-understand data along with pictures and your branding, you more likely to secure your next listing.

Want to learn more about marketing your brand? Go to Store.RealEstateBook.com to contact your local Real Estate Book representative.

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2015. All rights reserved.

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5 Marketing Truths for 2015

By Rebecca Chandler

Is your marketing program on auto-pilot? Have you settled for “good enough?” Consumer, media, and marketing trends all change over time and it’s easy to fall behind and lose traction. When you look at your current program, are you taking these 5 marketing truths into consideration?

1 – What the consumer wants, they go get. Today’s consumers are accustomed to self-service. We do our banking online, check ourselves out at the grocery store, look up directions on our phones, etc. If you are still operating under the assumption that the consumer needs you to find out information about the market, the neighborhood, homes for sale, or homes sold, that’s just not the case anymore. The information is abundantly available. Your value no longer lies in providing information. Your value lies in interpreting and applying the information. Make sure your marketing highlights the things you do really well – helping to choose the best neighborhood for a specific lifestyle, helping negotiate the best price, helping to navigate through the paperwork and details of a real estate transaction.

Examples –

  • Offer a downloadable checklist of home wants and needs and offer to help find a specific dream home.
  • Write a “quick tip” for buying and selling in your market and use it in your offline advertising with a call to action to read more on your website.
  • Post local real estate news on your social media, website, in ads in local magazines and newspapers. You want to be seen as an expert.

2 – Marketing your brand is not all about you. Many agents cling to the old way of marketing their brand in ads that feature themselves, their achievements, their awards, (and their 20-year old headshot). Today’s consumer expects their interaction with you to be about them, not you. Why else would they pay commission on what is most likely, their largest purchase? Take a hint from celebrities with strong personal and positive brands. Oprah Winfrey’s brand is all about helping others overcome obstacles and achieve their dreams. Barbara Corcoran’s brand is all helping you apply her knowledge of real estate and business. The judges on talent reality shows like The Voice or American Idol are known for helping up and coming artists reach their full potential. Show how you can help make real estate dreams come true.

Examples –

  • Feature a recent buyer or seller and their “success story.” Make it about them, not a testimonial about you.
  • Stay positive. Real estate transactions may be tricky, but you make the experience less stressful. Make sure your ads, your social media posts, show that you make it easy, not that you rescue consumers from the real estate “pitfalls.” Eek.
  • Promote your home marketing program to potential sellers. What will you do to sell my house? (Other than stick a sign in the yard and post it online. They can do those things without you.)

3 – Standing out online may start by standing out offline. Your website is probably a big part of your marketing strategy, but don’t discount offline, particularly print. Recent marketing trends are depicting resurgence in print. JC Penney decided to begin publishing their catalog again to drive online sales. Ikea’s comedic ad on their “bookbook” shows the benefits of catalog browsing while mocking Apple’s ad campaigns and driving more store visits and online purchases for the international retail giant. Even Apple invested heavily in print advertising showing the newest iPhone’s “actual size.”

Why should you invest in print? Because SEM battles for the most searched real estate terms are nearly impossible to win. Large listing aggregators have poured millions into securing the top positions in search through SEM (paid Search Engine Marketing). And while you certainly wouldn’t want to abandon best SEO practices (free Search Engine Optimization) for your website, it’s best to look for online traffic from other sources as well. The truth about offline advertising is that it results in direct traffic to your site when someone actually types in your url and branded searches. Or – if they can remember your name or your company name, they’ll just search for you and find you – and you’re almost sure to show up in search results.

4 – The phone screen is the primary browsing screen. Mobile marketing is no longer optional. In a 2014 study conducted by Braun Research for Bank of America, respondents ranked their mobile phone more important to their daily life than their laptop, television, microwave or coffee. The National Association of REALTORS® 2014 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers indicated that half of home buyers searched for a home on a mobile device. And there are literally hundreds of studies that point to the continuing reliance on mobile technology in our daily lives. Research aside, it just makes sense in real estate – inherently a location-based and mobile activity. Buyers are actually driving around looking at homes. Now, they are also searching on their phones, mapping properties, downloading directions, texting codes to see more photos and information, texting their agent, and even signing offers via mobile applications.

How can you take advantage?

  • Mobilize your website. It must display legibly and be easy to navigate on mobile. Additionally, you should be able to “click to call” you. After all, your potential client has their phone in hand.
  • Integrate IDX and location based search on your site. If the consumer can search all homes around them from your site, there’s no need for them to ever leave.
  • Use text code lead generation tools. Standing in front of your listing, the buyer texts a code to see more photos, information and pricing. At the same time, you get their phone number. Is there any lead hotter than that?
  • Incorporate your mobile marketing into your listing presentation – and win more listings.

5 – Marketing is still an investment on which you should expect a return. There are many, many ways to market your brand, your listings, and your business, but not all have a substantial return on effort or monetary investment. For example, Instagram is an up and coming social network that may be the best way to market your listings . . . in 2016. Truth is, that while its popularity is not in question, the predominantly younger user base not likely to search for a home there, much less buy a home. As it gains an older user base, it may be more effective to marketing your business. Chances are, investing your time in Facebook will still reap a better return on effort in 2015, because you’ve already connected with your sphere of influence and they continue to interact with you there.

In terms of a monetary investment, look for measurable options. Track everything not just activity, but actual sales. The high volume of leads you may buy from a reseller may look like a good deal, but not if few end in a closed transaction. Similarly, a high cost on a lead that converts to business more often would be a better investment.

Working with a partner who offers a full real estate marketing program (like The Real Estate Book) also means that you can write one check for all your marketing needs – print, web, mobile, and more – get the tools you need to measure, keep current with marketing trends — and probably pay less than if you purchased all the various marketing tools a la carte.

Want to learn more? Contact your local Real Estate Book representative.

Want to read more? Check out these articles –

J.C. Penney Resurrects Its Catalog (Wall Street Journal)

92 Percent of College Students Prefer Reading Print books to E-Readers (New Republic)

Trends in Consumer Mobility (Braun Research for Bank of America)

10 Consumer Trends and Implications for Marketing Practice in 2015 (Huffington Post)


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