Digital Marketing Rules & Authenticity

Phil Sexton
Sibbach Team – eXp Realty


“PBTI” – People Believe The Internet

Have you ever heard this phrase before? In today’s day and age, this statement has never been more true. It applies to news stories, celebrity gossip, community events, product reviews, and yes, even your real estate business.

It’s through the PBTI mentality that people are making big buying decisions based on what the internet says. This can have major implications if an agent doesn’t keep up with their website or social media. If a prospective client looks to a website and finds that there is no current information on sales, and the most recent market review is from 2016, is that prospect going to think they’ve found the right agent? No, because people believe the internet! If an agent’s website doesn’t appear to be active, people assume the agent isn’t, either. That’s why it’s vital to the growth of your business to ensure your website contains current information. This philosophy also applies to other web profiles like Zillow, Trulia, Redfin and, Facebook, Yelp, and Instagram.

Social media

Authenticity is the name of the game when it comes to social media. There are plenty of business Facebook pages that share generic web articles and entrust $25/month services to create automated content. Some agents are afraid that if a potential client sees “the real you,” prospects might not reach out for your services. Remember that people use the internet to determine who they see themselves building a relationship with – personally and professionally. So, putting out content that “isn’t you” means you’ll get clients that “aren’t you” either.

Some agents get overwhelmed thinking about creating content for multiple platforms and default to maintaining one social profile. This is a big mistake. Remember 10 years ago when everyone marketed and prospected for their businesses using physical mail, phone calls, and emails? It was a requirement for success to do all three. Today’s marketing strategy is no different. Some users only watch Instagram stories, some only watch Facebook videos, while some just consume the 280 characters in a Tweet. Posting on one platform means missing out on other audiences.

Other agents say the hardest part is creating a message for several platforms. In reality, it’s not necessary to create a new message for every platform. Create one message and update it so it’s applicable for other platforms. If a person poses a question on one platform, answer it there and share that content across the rest of your pages, because it’s likely others have the same question.

Marketing Rules

Oftentimes new agents get caught up in spending excessive amounts of time building a brand and developing lots of new marketing materials. But experienced professionals will tell you that it’s more important to get your name out there, build trust and consistency within your audience, and the brand will come.

When it does come time to create marketing materials, there are many rules and regulations that must be followed.

Here are some of the high-level rules to follow:

  • The employing broker’s name must be included in all advertisements, including classified ads, real estate advertising guides, and other magazine ads. K. Michelle Lind/Commissioner Lowe 9-22-14
  • In advertising flyers, the employing broker’s name may be located on either the top or the bottom of the flyer however the employing broker’s name must be clearly legible.
  • On any other promotional material the employing broker’s name must be on the front page or front of the object.
  • The employing broker’s name must be visible on the front page of the website and each subsequent page of the website, without the necessity of scrolling down, regardless of the screen size of the computer. (Yes this applies to your mobile versions too!)
  • When advertising real property on social media, such as Facebook, the name of the employing broker must be stated. When advertising real property in “thumbnails”, text messages, “tweets”, etc., where stating the name of the employing broker firm is not practical, the advertising information being linked to must include the name of the employing broker.
  • The size of the brokerage name should be as large and as prominent as possible on the website and all other promotional material. Not doing so will likely result in a fine.

With rules and regulations in hand, now is the time to believe in the internet! Get your name out there in a consistent and authentic manner. Remember that your website and social profiles are a vital gateway for prospective and current clients.