Digital marketing has revolutionized the art of the open house. But short of renting a drone to hover an open house banner over your next listing, here are 10 tried-and-true digital marketing methods that can help you drive more traffic to your event.
Imagine a buyer across town sees your listing, loves the layout, the price and the location but can’t make it to your open house. She may flag it for later review or even email you, but, soon, she’s off to the next page view and your listing blurs in with the rest.
Now imagine that same buyer sees the same house on your Facebook Live video. She wants to know how big the master closets are, so you walk her through the master suite in real time on a virtual tour. She books an appointment to see the house in person. After the open house, you post your video on your site for additional engagement, and you get two more offers.
Social media has the power to connect your buyers with your listing in real time while multiplying your reach long after the last guest has left the house.
Marketing guru, speaker and serial entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk often recommends this tip to real estate agents for its ability to allow potential buyers to view the house remotely and ask relevant questions that the agent can respond to in real time.
A virtual open house is a game-changer, especially when you factor in inclement weather, compressed sale durations and picky sellers who may be averse to hosting a flood of strangers into their home.
If you’re not comfortable with a live stream or you don’t have a big social following, you can still capture buyers’ attention with a video that you pre-record and directly embed into emails sent out prior to the open house. A video featuring a short tour of the house creates an inviting way to presell your prospects on the best attributes of the house. According to dotloop integrations partner BombBomb, video in email prompts an 80%-plus response rate for its clients.
BombBomb Content Marketer Alexa Franck recommends taking a storytelling approach, maybe highlighting what the previous owner loved most about the house or the best parts of living in the neighborhood. Make sure you include the standard details too, including bedroom count and property size, along with the open house time, location and your contact information.
Have you ever received a hot lead only to find out you missed the phone number or email due to a prospect’s sloppy handwriting on the open house sign-in sheet? Create a great first impression by using a digital sign-in sheet on a tablet or laptop. Inform your guests that they’ll receive email updates on the property when they sign into your event. Or team up with a local coffee shop and offer free coupons for those who sign-in.
Rosey Pooser, team leader with The Knoxville Group at virtual brokerage Real, says, “Technology is key right now in the real estate industry. Using an open house app where potential buyers can log-in on an iPad or tablet to receive information on the listing or the neighborhood helps entice buyers to actually give valid, detailed information.”
Dotloop syncs with almost 20 CRM platforms, meaning once the lead inputs their data, the automation will fill in the rest on your transaction documents. No more deciphering sloppy handwriting or time-consuming data reentry!
Before the first guest arrives, make sure you have your listing loop already created in dotloop with all of the pertinent documents that prospects and agents will want to see, including seller disclosures, list of seller home improvements, upgrades with monetary value and dates, lead-based paint disclosure and a lender payment flier with different financial products, including first-home buyer products.
That way, you can simply create individual folders within the loop for each buyer who makes an offer onsite. The process takes only a few clicks and instantly puts the prospect in touch with all the information they need while their interest is hot.
Once you add the prospects’ names to the People section, their information will auto-populate in all the transaction document fields.
For those who don’t make an offer, you can upload an open house contacts document into the listing loop to help facilitate follow-up.
A simple integration with API Nation and dotloop also allows you to sync all your data to your Google Suite, including Google Calendar, where you can set a task for a follow-up meeting for second showings.
Veteran agents and brokers know that a crowded open house only stirs a sense of urgency among buyers. Houston-based Real agent Kassie Lock finds one great way to drive traffic is to make the listing active on a Thursday, block all showings Thursday and Friday, then host your open house on Saturday.
“This forces more buyer traffic to your open house,” she says. “The strategy has proven effective time and again as we’ve sold homes in 15 minutes, five hours and one day in communities with an average of 80 days on market.”
Many agents also report receiving higher-grossing offers by simply inviting the neighbors. “The increased traffic at the open house makes buyers think there’s a lot of interest in that house, and they’ll make more competitive offers,” says Natalie Gwin, Team Leader of The Knoxville Group at Real.
There’s a feature in dotloop that allows easy discoverability of your listings by buying agents. Buying agents can link their loop to yours for submitting offers. Once a listing is linked, the buying agent will be added to your loop and you to theirs for sharing. Once they share an offer with you, a new folder will appear in the loop with their offer documents. To ensure your privacy, the agent making the offer will only see the listing information and your email address.
Dotloop also offers Easy Offer, a public link that allows any buying agent to easily find your listings and all of its associated documents. You can share the link directly with agents or post them on social media or the MLS. This feature is a great way to ensure the privacy of your loop, giving you complete control over what the buying agent sees while avoiding duplicate loops for your listing.
When the agents click on the Easy Offer button, a new web page opens to the listing, giving them access to all the pertinent documents, and providing you with their sign-in information for follow-up.
Further, you can send the link directly via email or text Messenger, a free, full-service, in-app texting feature that improves client response time and gives you real-time notifications as soon as a client takes action. In this case, the agent would be able to gain access to the listing once signed into dotloop.
Several apps allow virtual staging of the home’s interior in a variety of décor styles. If a homebuyer can visualize the space in a décor style more in line with their wants and needs, they’re more inclined to engage.
After the guests leave, email the images that resonated most. Or, better yet, text them the staging images and listing information using dotloop’s Messenger. Even if you offer digital staging options, you might also print out old-school floor plans of each room with measurements to help buyers envision their furniture placement.
By claiming a property listing on Zillow, you can include details about your real estate open house for free and engage with millions of home shoppers on the largest real estate network on the Internet. Zillow Premier Agents appear as the exclusive agent for the listing.
Agents who integrate their accounts with dotloop also enjoy the added benefit of having review requests sent automatically to the client and posting of sides data on their Premier Agent profile once the transaction closes. This automated step saves you valuable time and helps encourage future business by giving prospects a view of all the homes you’ve sold in a specific region with happy customers giving testimonials on your behalf.
Dotloop isn’t just for managing the home sell transaction. Once you have an offer, the platform offers a great way to share contacts and full-sheet information on Trusted Service Providers, including mortgage lenders, home warranty insurers, movers and contractors, with interested buyers.
In return, you might ask your mortgage lending partners who pre-qualify clients to share your open house listings with their prospective buyers. Dotloop’s collaborative, end-to-end platform brings all parties together, making the share-out of information easy and seamless.
Remember, most open house attendees are visiting several houses, making the recall of each property’s features and location a bit of a memory game. To help your listing stand out from the crowd, create a single property website with multiple photos of the house. Then, hand each guest a flier with a short URL link or QR code linking to the site once they leave the house.
Once you tap into all the tools dotloop provides — from text Messenger and Tasks to Trusted Service Providers, Easy Offers and Integrations — your open houses will open new doors to leads and faster closes with your trusted transaction management platform at your side.