Most real estate marketing plan templates are terrible. Here’s an especially useless one: Sure, we all want to analyze our competition through strengths and weaknesses. But these documents rarely tell us how to act. They aren’t action plans. They are philosophical ideals. Marketing plans are powerful when they define our actions and give a singular goal. I personally wasted a ton of time completing 12+ page marketing plans that was useless 1 month later. What I learned from this is that marketing plans need to lead to clear action. Instead of giving you an intellectual overview of marketing, today I’m going to write out the steps I use in my own personal plans. The goal of my plan is to define the one thing that I will focus on in my business. You, as a real estate agent, have a ton of marketing noise coming at you. It can be hard to filter through all that noise and figure out what actually matters. This process should help you identify what matters to your business. It will help you establish the style you want to take to your marketing. For example, this article on Facebook Ads for Realtors might not be appropriate for your style. Maybe it will not help you accomplish what you actually want to achieve in real estate. Perhaps, it won’t give you the type of customers you are really looking for. It is hard to make concrete decisions on what you are going to do in your marketing until you have a clear goal. This plan will help you find that. We’re going to examine how to define the one number thing that matters most to your business. And then establish all the ways we will use to make that number become a reality. Until you have this crystal clear scoreboard setup, reading more marketing tips really is just procrastination. I used to halfheartedly start hundreds of side marketing projects. For example, I once ran ads to get 500+ Facebook ‘Likes’ on my business page. It turns out 1% of these people actually ended up visiting my website and even less of them joined my email list and even fewer of them bought from me. The time and money I spent getting them to like my page was wasted. Today, I’m going to be sharing my steps for establishing a: Simple Real Estate Marketing Plan. Step 1: Pick your objective Life’s complicated. So, let's focus on only one thing. The list of things you can do to market your real estate company is unlimited. (Social Media, SEO, Door knocking, Mailing, calling, facetoface, etc...) But it’s impossible to coordinate these activities into a structured and measurable plan unless you align them all with 1 number. That number is the sole thing that matter to you and your business. For Easy Agent Pro, we focus on building an email list of people interested in free real estate marketing advice. That is our only goal. What's your one goal? We have very specific (and achievable) numbers we want to hit each month related to this goal. Also, we know our average numbers for everything that relates to this goal (percentage of new visitors that subscribe, how many people buy after subscribing, etc...). If a new way of reaching our customer comes up, we first analyse if it can impact our progress on that goal. This is the only way to stay sane and productive as a marketer in the 21st century. Let’s examine the various metrics you have to choose between for your focus point: The Email List: Honestly, marketing statistics say you should focus on building your email list. Social Media outlets usually get response rates in the .2.5%. People also drop off of those networks frequently. Conversely, email addresses rarely change. It’s a pain to change your email address. Email open rates and conversion rates also tend to be 14%. Email is also a completely scaleable method of marketing. You can have unlimited people on your drip and blast campaigns. The whole region you work in could be on your list. It's not as easy to scale cold calling or door knocking. If you choose building your email list as your #1 metric, the closing question you should ask everyone at trade shows, networking events, door knocking, etc. is whether you can put them on your email list. Additionally, if you choose email as your #1 focus metric, you don't have to limit your marketing to just digital means. You can get emails anywhere. Offline marketing is great for email acquisition. Other metrics you could focus on: 1. Outbound Calls: Calling still works! If you’ve got a knack for the phone, this could be a great competitive advantage for you and your business. 2. Inbound referrals: If you focus on referrals, you more readily focus on providing the best customer service. 3. Warm CRM Contacts: Increasing this number is great if you love your CRM and the processes that pertain to it. 4. Facetoface meetings: This method is timetested and will work. It’s downside is that you can rarely scale it. Step 2: Figure out what needs to change Great, now we have the one number we’re going to focus on for our business. What I do next is work that number to figure out what needs to change in my business. For example, my goal is 20,000 email addresses by 01/2016 for Easy Agent Pro. That means I need to average 55 email addresses a day starting 01/2015. If my website is converting 3% of it’s new visitors to my email list, that means I need 1833 new visitors to my website everyday to hit my goal. That’s 55,000 new visitors a month. This is what I call the “State of the Union.” Now, all my plans are defined for me. I just have to adjust the methodology until I reach the goal. What can I adjust? 1. The percentage of visitors that convert to email. I can release a product and give it away for an email address. Or, I can change the words on my optins and see if one gets me more email address. (Check out this cool real estate word analysis here.) 2. The number of visitors to my website. I justify paying for advertising on Facebook now. My numbers and goals are set. So, if I want to open up a new traffic acquisition method, the numbers that it has to meet are already setup. Bottom line for Realtors: Let’s say 1% of the people that are on your email list buy/sell with you within 4 months, and 4% of them buy/sell with you within 2 years. Congrats! You now have predictable income. Simply put, you can predict the houses you will sell 1 year from now based on your email list growth today. This works with any other method such as phone calls, door knocks, and postcards too. Just remember to only focus on 1 number and relate all other numbers to that specific one. Step 3: Examine your available paths Now it’s time to do the math backwards and figure out how many people you need to get on your list. Let’s say you want 1000 people on your list within 3 months because that will meet your income goals. That means you need to get an average of 11.2 emails per day. How can you do that? Simple. Ask 12 people everyday if you can send them free homeownership tips and make the best series of emails out there. Or, you can start reading up on SEO for your real estate website and drive more traffic to it. Let’s say about 3% of the people that visit your website join your email list. You can easily figure out how many visitors you need to get the emails you want. This step has unlimited options realistically. You just have to pick the one that fits your hand the best. If you hate writing for example, you probably shouldn’t venture down an SEO and content driven inbound marketing route. Every step of the way will be pain and suffering for you. Instead, focus on something you love. Maybe, you love door knocking. Change up the average door knocking pitch and just ask the person if you can get their email address to send them a series of great home owner tips and coupons for local businesses. Really, it doesn’t matter what you choose as long as you are the best at it. Be the best at those marketing tasks and be sure they filter into that 1 marketing number you’re focusing on. Step 4: Quantifying your paths Now, we have to set our daily paths to achieving our goal. By now, you should know what you’re going to focus on, how you’d probably like to achieve it, and where your 1 number needs to be in order to have a comfortable income. We now need to break down the specific marketing activities that will feed our goal metric. To change up the examples, let’s say you are focusing on feeding warm leads into your CRM. Right now, you have 300 warm leads in your CRM and 3 months from now you want 1000 people in there. Great! That’s a goal. Now, let’s break that down into daily activities: You need: 700 additional people someway, somehow. And you have 3 months to do it. Now: 1. You list every single thing you could possibly do to achieve that goal on a sheet of paper. 2. Next, list the conversation rate and how easy it would be for YOU to accomplish this task. 3. Finally, multiple the two numbers. This simple math procedure tells you exactly where to start and how to get the 700 people you need on your list. Step 5: Take massive action I’m terrible at motivating others. So instead of writing some big motivational speech here, I’ll place this video here. It’s one of the videos I use when my marketing plans seem unmanageable. No real estate marketing plan is complete without some motivational video: Step 6: Predetermine review points Finally, make sure you determine weekly and monthly review points for your real estate marketing plan. And publish them! Have your best friend check in on you and make sure you are following through with your goals. Put calendar notifications in your phone and review your progress each time one pops up. These review points are crucial to longterm success as they give you a vantage point on your work you cannot see while you are producing it. Enjoy the road! If I’ve learned anything from marketing, it’s that marketing is a process. The end is great and rewarding. But really it’s the process that keeps us all in the game. Thanks for reading! Be sure to share this post if you’ve found it beneficial. You might also want to join the email list to get content like this sent directly to you.