The 2021 Digital Marketing Trends That REALTORs® Need to Know
Many lessons were learned in 2020:
One can never have enough hand sanitizer.
Face masks can be a fashion accessory.
Health is wealth.
And no one can predict the future.
While we can’t say for certain what the new year will bring, we can offer some insight into what real estate agents can expect when it comes to 2021 digital marketing trends and best practices.
Dive in below and start making 2021 real estate marketing plans accordingly.
Virtual Pivots Are Here to Stay
The last nine months have been an exercise in flexibility and ingenuity.
When the physical world had to shut down, the digital world had to pick up the slack.
Video calls. Virtual open houses. Remote meetings.
Even though we’re all excitedly awaiting the return to normal, some of the changes spurred by 2020 won’t be disappearing.
Virtual pivots have proven that sometimes, in-person isn’t the only way. And we expect that some of those pivots are here to stay.
That doesn’t mean that open houses are a thing of the past. But it does mean that real estate agents should be prepared to offer virtual services or alternatives.
Authenticity Is King
“We’re all in this together” has been the rallying cry of the year.
The global pandemic affected everyone; anyone, including businesses and brands, who tried to pretend otherwise ran the risk of looking out-of-touch and ignorant.
Bringing authenticity and relatability into your marketing plans will continue to be essential in 2021.
Your audience doesn’t want to be pitched to; they want to connect with someone who they can relate to, who can keep it real and tell it like it is.
If you’ve been hesitant to open up on Instagram or in blog posts, 2021 is the year to take a deep breath and try it out.
Don’t be afraid to share snippets of your personal life, or to admit when things aren’t so rosy. Your authenticity will pay dividends in the form of meaningful connections with clients, past, present and future.
Clients Want Specificity and Value
Real estate agents are a dime a dozen.
Real estate agents who …
- have a strong, distinctive brand;
- provide actual value in their marketing content;
- offer specific, unique insights and advice; and
- have expertise in particular areas
… are one of a kind.
The world of digital marketing is saturated. Everyone is vying for attention, and largely using the same tactics.
At the same time, audiences are growing smarter. More discriminating. They expect to be marketed to and in exchange, they want content that’s specific. Unique. And valuable.
The marketing trend: uniqueness and value. This needs to be the foundation of every piece of digital marketing content you produce.
Before you hit post, publish or send, ask yourself: what value does this offer? Does it stand apart, in terms of what it says and how it looks? If I saw this, would I like it, comment on it, share it?
Community, Compassion and Change
Marketers faced one dilemma over and over again this year: do we weigh in on current events? Or do we keep quiet?
Those that stayed silent were often called out for doing so. Those that said something vague or shallow were berated. Those that said something thoughtful or did something meaningful often found themselves with a bigger, more engaged audience than ever before.
While brands and businesses may have comfortably stayed out of conversations about politics, the environment and social justice in the past, these days audiences have come to expect some sort of response.
That expectation isn’t going anywhere in 2021. In response, we expect to see marketers make real, sincere efforts to do good in the community and connect with their audiences in a heartfelt, human way. And to react to cultural events and conversations thoughtfully and with compassion.
That doesn’t have to mean penning an essay or weighing in a polarizing political matter. It just means letting your audience see your humanity.
For real estate agents, that could look like making a greater effort to participate in or lead community-based charity events and initiatives. Offering heartfelt words of sympathy or quiet reflection. And committing to learn and evolve.
Quality (and Budgets) Over Quantity When It Comes to Social
It used to be that marketers — real estate agents included — felt they had to be present on every single social media platform if they wanted to be relevant.
In reality, it meant that they overextended themselves and offered diluted content and value.
That has changed.
More and more, marketers are choosing to focus on one, maybe two social platforms that make the most sense for their industry and their marketing goals. And they’re putting money behind their efforts.
Paying to play on social media is no longer optional; it’s an essential social media marketing strategy. With only one or two social media platforms in play, running ads (like Facebook Lead Ads and Instagram ads) and promoting posts can be more effective and offer more meaningful results.
Social media marketing in 2021 = valuable content, supported by ad spend, on key platforms only.
In 2021, reevaluate which social media platforms you’re using as part of your real estate digital marketing strategy. Choose to focus your energies — and your budget — on the one or two where you’ve seen the most promising results and most engaged audience.
What 2021 marketing trend do you want to focus on most?