Real Estate Online Marketing Strategy: What Works in 2024

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For real estate investors, landlords, and vacation rental owners, the online environment is a powerful tool for selling, buying, and promoting their properties.

We love to save you money, and in this article, we will provide you with a checklist for building your own digital marketing plan —  so you increase your profit, too. 

Our marketing tips cover everything from social media to email marketing, SEO, blogging, and referrals to attract buyers, tenants, and guests. 

Is Digital Marketing Effective for Real Estate Professionals?

Digital marketing refers to marketing practices utilizing online technologies and platforms. It is more effective than traditional advertising channels as it is cost-effective, highly measurable, and targets audiences more precisely. Here’s what a real estate company or professional can gain from implementing digital marketing efforts:

  • Brand awareness – Your real estate business can increase brand awareness through blog posts, social media, and other digital marketing strategies. 
  • Repeat business – You can stay in contact with former clients and tenants, so they can refer new clients or keep you in mind when they’re looking for rentals.
  • Increased conversions – It supports conversion-focused marketing strategies such as referrals, sign-up rewards, and time-limited offers to increase sales.
  • Valuable insights – Online marketing results are easy to measure, track, and compare across many parameters.
  • Lead generation Digital marketing allows for wider reach, more precise audience targeting, and building relationships with your audience, resulting in more leads. 
  • Higher ROI – Due to better (and cheaper) targeting, the ROI is higher compared to traditional marketing methods.

Top Online Marketing Strategies for Real Estate Businesses 

A digital marketing strategy allows you to reach more potential clients than ever before. While it takes time to set it up, the return on investment is worth every minute. Here are some tactics you can include in your real estate marketing plan.

Start Social Media Marketing 

Social media is an excellent way to promote your properties and projects. There are two types of marketing on social media platforms — organic and paid. 

Organic marketing relies on building an engaging social media presence, creating regular high-quality content, interacting with your audience, and building communities. The algorithm brings the audience to you over time while you maintain these relationships and collaborate with other influencers. It is a long-term marketing strategy. 

Paid social media marketing efforts focus on attracting new followers and potential buyers or tenants. It refers to ads and promotions on platforms and is still more targeted compared to traditional, offline approaches.  It is a short-term, immediate method of boosting your visibility.

Launch Digital Ad and PR campaigns

Real estate digital marketing includes several types of digital ads, depending on where they appear and what they look like. The ads can be parts of PR campaigns, which are essentially a form of storytelling.

Digital Ads

There are four main types of digital ads, and they sometimes overlap as forms of media are used across different channels. The main types of digital ads include: 

  • Display ads –  Display advertising involves text, images, and video and it can appear on different channels. Real estate pros can find thousands of templates online and promote new property listing, rentals, or projects. 
  • Search engine ads – You can see examples of search engine marketing when you Google something and see paid results at the top of the search results page.  
  • Native ads  – Undisruptive ads that barely feel like ads as they fit the content on a platform, such as a video on a video platform that only subtly advertises a product.
  • Social media ads  – There are several types, including in-video, carousel, in-feed, stories, and interactive ads.  

PR Campaigns

PR campaigns provide value to your potential customers or tenants but also wider internet audiences. For example, if you are an investor with commercial real estate properties, you could provide value in the form of case studies about your property niche. Here are examples of PR campaigns:

  • Case studies
  • Maps (with niche-specific information, such as amenities)
  • Infographics
  • Testimonials
  • Interactives (e.g., rent or payment calculators)
  • Surveys
  • Blog posts 

Create a Mobile Friendly Website

Having a real estate business website can help you reach more potential customers, convert interested buyers, and strengthen your industry reputation. If the visitor is, for example, a real estate agent interested in your property management company, they will have more reason to believe you are a reputable service from reading your website alone. 

However, it is important to use responsive design to create a desktop- and mobile-friendly website. This is not an option, but a requirement, as over 90% of all internet users access it via their smartphones, and 15% of US adults are mobile-only users.

Build a Blog

Building a blog is a common first step in content marketing. It helps you increase your traffic organically, meaning people will find your pages through organic search rather than clicking on an ad. The increase in traffic also boosts your rankings and improves your chances of building better backlinks, leading to a snowballing positive effect.

Furthermore, it educates and helps your target audience, creating positive associations with your business even before they need any real estate services. You can use it to share your knowledge of the real estate market, promote your property listings, answer frequently asked questions, write guides, and more.  

Focus on SEO Best Practices 

woman checkmarks

Search engine optimization is an organic marketing tactic that improves your website in several aspects so it would appear as high as possible on Google or another search engine.

SEO is a long-term strategy, so you should not expect immediate results. However, it helps you get more qualified leads, improves your online visibility and reputation in the real estate industry, and leaves you with useful market insights. There are four subsets of SEO, and you should pay attention to each, on your own or with the help of real estate SEO services.

Local SEO

Local SEO helps you rank for searches in your area. It covers countless aspects, but the most important ones are:

  • Your Google Business Profile
  • Joining online directories (Yelp, Yellow Pages, TripAdvisor)  
  • Joining local business associations in your niche
  • Collaborate with local businesses on content creation (e.g., contractors, photographers, real estate agents)
  • Localized content and keywords
  • Consistent, easy-to-find name, address, phone number, and website URL

Technical SEO 

Technical SEO refers to how easy it is for a search engine bot to crawl, index, and rank your web pages. It also covers some aspects of user experience and requires expert help in most cases. Technical SEO includes:

  • Crawlability and indexability (e.g., duplicates, broken links, robot.txt files, sitemaps, site architecture, navigation)
  • Rendering (e.g., how the page elements load, site speed)
  • Rankability (how easy it is for a search bot to “read” and rank your pages)
  • User experience (e.g., intuitiveness, security, mobile optimization) 

Backlinks

Backlinks refer to links to your web pages from other websites. A simple way to see them is as a vote of authoritativeness from others, and search engines see it that way, too, increasing your rankings. Building connections with bloggers, influencers, and legit SEO agencies is essential for link building, as is avoiding shady companies that sell cheap links. 

  • Guest posts (writing a post for someone else)
  • Niche edits (adding a link in existing content)
  • Broken link building (finding broken links on other websites and offering your page as a replacement)
  • Creating unique linkable content (infographics, case studies, whitepapers, interactive maps, calculators)

On-Page SEO

On-page SEO refers to everything you can do on a webpage to optimize your website. It includes but is not limited to:

  • Keyword research and implementation
  • Page structure (headings, titles, paragraphs, images)
  • Meta tags
  • Internal and external links
  • Alt text

Start an Email Marketing Campaign 

Email marketing campaigns have an ROI of an astounding 4,200%, and with marketing automation, it is a shame not to utilize them regardless of your real estate niche. While you absolutely don’t want to spam your audience, reminding them that your business exists and providing them with discounts, helpful information, or exclusive content is an excellent way to stay on top of their minds. Here’s how to do it:

  • Define your audience
  • Encourage them to sign up for your newsletter
  • Find an email automation service online
  • Create valuable content
  • Create a schedule
  • Set up a campaign

Create a Brand for Yourself

There are benefits to creating a real estate brand, even if you have a small property, as it can help build trust, showing customers or tenants what to expect. Here are the main elements of a brand:

  • Name and visuals
  • Mission and values 
  • Target audience
  • Brand voice

Video Content

In the digital age, it is a shame to miss out on the benefits of video marketing. It has the highest reach of all content types, and if you film it yourself, the cost-to-benefit ratio is more than worth it. Here are some content types you can implement:

  • Video walkthroughs or virtual tours
  • Reels
  • Drone footage of the wider area
  • Explainers
  • Testimonials
  • Live videos
  • User-generated videos  

Get Client Testimonials

reviews

Real estate companies with a high client turnover can especially benefit from online reviews and client management systems. Positive reviews across online platforms increase your trustworthiness and convince potential clients to contact you. 

Start a Referral System

Referrals can attract prospective clients and increase your brand’s popularity in the local market, gaining you repeat business. You can ask people to share your images on social media accounts for points or work with local businesses for mutual benefit. For example, if someone refers a family member to your vacation rental, they can get a small discount.   

You don’t have to use all real estate marketing ideas out there, but if you’re in the business, you’re looking for home buyers, or you plan on becoming an investor, it’s crucial to give online marketing a try. 

What Type of Marketing Is Best for Real Estate Professionals?

For most real estate pros, from landlords and investors to property managers, investing in local, SEO-optimized marketing is important, as most of their clients come from their immediate area. Email marketing is excellent due to its high ROI, and landlords and investors have a lot to gain from video content and social media. 

From Clicks to Potential Tenants and Clients

In a competitive housing market, many real estate pros need new marketing forms to attract clients and build their brands. Online marketing is effective as it’s highly targeted, affordable, and successful as a lead-generation tool. It is also flexible and versatile, spanning different but overlapping tactics, such as email, social media, SEO, and SEM.