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Lewallen Home Properties Digital Content Promotion. Final Report by Mikhail Oparin, Dec 14, 2018

Meet Your Agent: Bradley Lewallen

Bradley Lewallen (Lewallen Home Properties) is a real estate agent and a premiere partner of Realty One Group Cascadia brokerage firm in Vancouver, SW Washington.

Project Foundation

About Bradley:

With over 28 years of customer service in the restaurant, hospitality, legal and retail industries Bradley believes his Honesty, Integrity and Sincerity will undoubtedly benefit his clients. His meticulous attention-to-detail, compassion, empathy and perfectionism help him to make sure his clients are given the utmost care and peace of mind while making one of the biggest investments of their lives. As a real estate agent, Bradley's mission is to become a sustained resources for ALL clients for many years to come.

Mission: "To become a sustained resource for ALL clients for many years to come."

Problems/Challenges/Opportunities

The higher purpose of Bradley's campaign is to show commitment for creating an environment of trust. Bradley believes it is important to have customer satisfaction. Satisfied customers are happy members of the community, thus, increasing happiness in the community Bradley is committed to making community better and happier.

Philosophy: Bradley's clients come first. He pledges to be in constant communication with his clients, keeping them fully informed throughout the entire buying or selling process. He believes that if his clients not left with an amazing experience, he hasn't done his job. Bradley doesn’t measure success through achievements or awards, but through the satisfaction of his clients because his goal is to create lifelong relationships and be a constant resource for ALL of his clients for years to come.

Defining the problem:

The goal of this campaign is to generate awareness of the agent in the area and promote the use of his services. For this the audience should be incentivized and motivated to use the services of this particular agent. The task is not an easy one. There are many agents in the area and the market is going through the seasonal cycle of slowing down during the winter holidays.

Challenges:

The challenge is in creating enough awareness and differentiating Bradley's services by providing valuable information on purchasing options for the first-time home buyers, promoting existing listed properties and serving as a resource of tools, referrals and recommendations.

Opportunities:

"...homeownership is a buffer against rising rents." (Scott Hogan, Clark County Title Company)

The Vancouver Business Journal article "How Long can this hot real estate market last" written by Scott Hogan in May, 2018 suggest that it is still favorable to purchase a home in Vancouver, WA, rather than rent. The Management Group president Carmen Villarma in Jan 2017 article of the Columbian "Rent or buy? Advice has changed for Clark County" points out that the cost to rent a single-family home does not cost as much as a 3-bedroom apartment. However, mortgage for average price home of $320K is around $1,500 in Vancouver and it is cheaper than a 3-bedroom 2-bath apartment $1,650 on Mill Plain Blvd in Cascade Park area.

"...buying a house is a better deal this year in Clark County." (Realty Trac, The Columbian).

Goals & Objectives

The genesis of the Lewallen Home Properties campaign is Bradley's desire to create lifelong relationships with ALL of his clients, which means the decisions that are made during the purchase or sale of clients homes are made memorable.

Making a positive impact by paying attention to client’s needs and keeping all channels of communication open throughout the process is the goal. What purpose does an apple serve when it falls off the tree? It is in the nature of the apple to serve its consumer with its substance.

Lewallen Home Properties offer comfort and confidence to the client decision making process thus concentrating on the maximum potential of the sale and/or purchase. Primary goals of Lewallen Home Properties is to increase sales of real estate through communication to the target audience (middle class income families and individuals).

Objective: to raise awareness and brand-audience communication in order to increase business.
AUDIENCE

Audience Personas

Local residents of Vancouver/Portland area, first time home buyers, or those who are wishing to relocate to the area, or looking to purchase a medium to above medium price range home in the Washington State (primarily in Vancouver, SW Washington). Average or above average income family or single individuals, 30-60 years of age, with or without children, with limited disposable income.

Diverse Audience Personas

Project Foundation

SWOT Analysis

STRENGTHS: Technology - Realty ONE Group Cascadia is a brokerage that serves its agents with the latest mobile and web technologies, tools that help agents do their research, marketing and audience communication. Office Space: premiere office space to hold meetings with partners and clients, first-home buyer courses and other appointments. Training Institute - digital marketing tools, prospecting, listing presentations and other.

WEAKNESSES: Communication in a new role as a real estate agent. Ability to listen to the market, synthesize and reflect information to the client. Initial lack of publicity, audience interest or even a simple knowledge of the agent. Lead generation is another weakness - without any audience there is no lead generation, there is no income.

ADVANTAGES: a mid- to high-range property values are affordable in Vancouver, SW Washington area, in comparison to the nearing Portland and its suburbs. More people want to buy in Vancouver, as Portland market is simply more expensive.

THREATS: competition, there are many hungry agents in the area. 100% commission-based income makes it really difficult to stay in business without substantial lead generation.

Competitor Mini Review

Snapshot of Mini Competitor Review from Assignment #2.

Customer Decision Process

Snapshot of Mapping common audience paths through the decision process.

Core Messaging / 5 W's

Snapshot of 5 W's. Assignment #2

Digital Assets

The primary objective for the website is to generate interest in using Lewallen Home Properties services by providing information that pertains to buying and selling real estate. Website offers suggestions and tips, provides a search engine to view current listings and trends and offers advice. All of that in hopes to gather interest of the audience to use Lewallen Home Properties services in their purchase or sale of residential properties.

The target audience members visiting LewallenHomeProperties.com are potential home buyers or home sellers. The purpose of their visit is to:

  1. Obtain an agent who listens to the customer needs and acts for their interest. Brad comes from experience of buying and selling homes on his own and understands the side of the customer.
  2. As a member of Realty ONE Group Cascadia, Lewallen Home Properties is a trusted brand and empowered to simplifying the process of selling or buying homes.
  3. Provide tips on real estate trends, home improvements, mortgage calculator.
  4. Offer moving and relocation services and assistance.
  5. As a member of NAGLREP (National Association of Gay & Lesbian Real Estate Professionals) Lewallen Home Properties is an advocate for equality, human and civil rights, to support equal housing opportunities to LGBT community.

Potential keywords and phrases: Homes for sale Vancouver, WA, Real Estate in Vancouver, WA, Vancouver Realtor, Clark County Realtor, Southwest Washington Realtor, Home seller resources, Home buyer resources, Home worth

The main purposes of the social media channels are to inform and educate about current trends in the market thus increasing customer’s confidence in the brand. Also, to promote the human touch and personal approach to customer service by Lewallen Home Properties. Lewallen Home Properties is not just an agent it is your neighbor. And finally, to increase, to motivate and to promote the use of Lewallen Home Properties brand to buy and sell residential properties in the area.

Visual Identity / Design

Facebook and Twitter profile snapshots. Assignment #3.
Business Card, Local Neighborhood Introduction Mailer and directional signage graphics.

Digital Campaign Strategy

Introduction

Bradley Lewallen (Lewallen Home Properties) is a real estate agent and a premiere partner of Realty One Group Cascadia brokerage firm in Vancouver, SW Washington. He offers a range of services to assist his clients with purchase and sale of residential properties and land. By combining ethics, knowledge of the area with digital tech tools, Lewallen Home Properties aims to help its clients find exactly what they want. Bradley's goal is to develop a relationship with his client by being positive, forward minded, collaborative, forward thinking agency. Whether it is a selling or buying experience, the result must cater to the customer, not to the transaction.

Executive Summary

Lewallen Home Properties is a new brand in the Vancouver, Southwest Washington area. Brand that is built on ethics of listening to the customer. Being a new agent, there is no awareness or recognition outside of Bradley's sphere of influence. The goal is to increase the sphere of influence. Lewallen Home Properties digital marketing strategy is to build awareness in order to capture a percentage of the market in the area. The campaign overall tone is to offer Lewallen Home Properties relationship to its clients (not just another service). The digital campaign segments would include tips and tricks for seasonal awareness as a short term benefits (for example: winterize your homes, yards and crawl spaces).

A long-term outcome is to develop and establish relationship with the clients by creating a value of Lewallen Home Properties brand as a resource (this is who you go to to sell or buy a house). Primarily through social media and website and occasional mailer/traditional marketing, the plan includes engagement and interaction with the audience, listening and influencing the audience to participate when the time is right for them. Through website analytics and social media tracking tools (facebook and twitter, with eventual implementation of the Hootsuite) measure, evaluate and create digital campaigns that are effective in building awareness and capturing a share of the market in the area.

Community of Interest Analysis

List of organizations and partners that provide access to information vital to develop an understanding of the real estate market in Vancouver, SW Washington area. In addition they provide a network of advertising options to promote as well as link to the local events.

Content Strategy / Overall Campaign Goals

Lewallen Home Properties has a website hosted by Realty ONE Group Cascadia, with its own infrastructure, running on Wordpress CMS platform. Social media channels include Facebook, Twitter, (in the future, instagram YouTube and LinkedIn). Campaign overall purpose is to relate the brand to the audience, promote its friendliness and resourcefulness in hopes to spark a relationship with all clients (present and future).

  • Research and marketing goals: comprehensive review of local real estate market, networking, advertising opportunities.
  • Social Media Goals: grow a community of followers, gain word-of-mouth, get likes, shares and clicks on links to the website.
  • Website: offer an in depth conversation on real estate market, offer resources and search tools to local listings. Promote occasional advocacy to important local causes (cancer research, education, healthcare industry, social issues, community issues).
  • Paid media goals - promote awareness towards the brand, Google Analytics tools, social media ads, blog and digital ads.

Campaign Implementation

Educational workshop is a great opportunity to capture leads in the downtime of sales and inspire the audience to participate in the program in hopes that they will be ready to purchase homes with more available options. The central platform for this campaign was chosen to be Facebook (three posts, one targeted facebook ad, one pinned facebook post, one public event page) with additional Twitter, a single Eventbrite registration web page and two Adobe Spark web pages.

All throughout November and part of December Lewallen home properties have been posting on a regular basis (at least once every other day on facebook), promoting upcoming workshops, featuring listed properties, posting useful tips and tricks for increasing home value.

Lewallen Home Properties partners identified a neighborhood in Vancouver that has around 200 single family homes that are rent only residences. The residents of these homes are perfect candidates for the Rent to Home program because they are either in transition from moving into the area, have credit issues or do not think they can afford to buy their own. Lewallen Home Properties agents walked to each of those 200 single family homes, introduced themselves and handed a flyer with invitation to the workshop. They answered any questions residents had and if no one answered, they left the flyer and invitation on their door.

Social Media Posts Visual Reference

Introducing Agent, Home Keeper, What Your house Worth and Funny Meme Facebook Posts

Print Materials

Rent To Home Flyer and Invitation Card

Campaign Metrics

Facebook is the most utilized platform for this project. From Nov 4, to Nov 18 Lewallen Home Properties page increased from 152 to 162 page followers:

Facebook Insights Screenshot, 12/19/2018

The highest organic post reach to-date happened on Nov 16, at 262 audience members:

Facebook Insights Screenshot 11/18/2018

The above statistics show increase in followers on facebook and organic reach up to Nov 18, 2018. The digital campaign has been established and is in a process of being implemented. Current campaign is differentiating from its original editorial calendar as the new strategy has been established by the partners. Particularly, the new campaign strategy is focusing on advertising for the periodical educational workshop to offer some insights on a Rent To Home program. This program offers options to rent to own or just rent or, if ready, buy the house instead of spending money on rent. This program, if successful, will generate interest in the community as the new year begins (so does the new house buying cycle).

Based on the data through Google Trends it has been determined that the cycles for rent/buy interest begins immediately after the holiday season and increase as the time progresses towards spring and summer, year after year. During the fall period cycle begins to slow down and reflect the trends as shown in the screenshot below.

Google Trends Monitor Screenshot 11/18/2018
Knocker Campaign Print Materials: Letter size Flyer and Half-page Invitation Card

Campaign Reflections & Insights

Findings

Knocker Campaign Social Media Event and Posts to promote Rent-To-Home Monthly Workshop.

  • Talked to the resident: 64 (32% Rate of Engagement)
  • Left flyer on the door handle: 149 (74.5% Rate of Exposure)
  • No soliciting signs: 6 (3% Rate of Drop-off)
  • Signed up as a result: 3 (1.5% Rate of Impact)
  • Total leads generated: 1
  • Total exposure: 430 (200 knockers and 230 digital channel views)

Customer-brand communication seem to be most effective via Facebook, but when complemented with printed mailer campaigns and future email campaigns, it becomes more effective, as media channels bring together synergy, needed for increase of audience awareness. The awareness about Lewallen Home Properties will definitely continue to increase, if the editorial calendar becomes more of a regular thing, followed with facebook insights, Google Analytics and Google Trends, effectively tailoring the message to reflect on what audience wants to hear.

Tailoring the editorial calendar to reflect media marketing and digital communication efforts of the brand to its audience is of vital importance for its success. Definitely a more diverse and regular schedule of facebook posts, tweets, and most importantly blog development is something that needs to be worked on.

From reading a few online articles and following the online debate on email marketing effectiveness, the effort must be made to generate a high-quality email messages that are more visual, more interactive, giving users more control (The Future of Email Marketing), offer clear and concise content, targeting the recipients of the message precisely on the subject of Rent vs Mortgage and the PROs and CONs of both, contributing to the audience engagement and response.

According to the local newspaper online article in the Columbian Rent-Buy Home Advise, Clark County and Vancouver City area is considered to be a buyers market. The rent is still considered to be more expensive than having a mortgage. The Rent To Home campaign seem to be a logical option for Lewallen Home Properties to establish a niche within the market to secure potential leads.

Planned Mailer and Email Campaign Drip

Second workshop event has been generated and is now in a process of being approved for the ad campaign through facebook, targeting people in a 10-mile radius between the ages of 28 and 65 to participate.

In the following week, Lewallen Home Properties is planning to do a mailer campaign targeting 579 households. This will include the 200 homes that were door knocked and 379 other residential properties in Camas that have also been identified as renters.

The workshops are planned to be hosted on a consistent basis therefore, in addition to this mailer there will be a combination of email campaign and boosted facebook ads to promote the workshop sessions. This drip campaign is hoped to increase awareness, engagement and participation in a workshop, further increasing the chances of customers signing up and increasing the future leads potential.

Website has been slowly picking up a few visits but due to the continues development (we are trying to connect the website to the lead generation software provided by the Realty One Group Cascadia) the traffic is in need of the boost.

In Conclusion of the Course

The greatest challenge working with the real business is accepting the constant change of plans. Considering the web development has been a struggle, Lewallen Home Properties is in need of a working, functional website that connects with the audience by providing more in-depth analysis of the local markets and integrating social media and digital marketing efforts for more effective lead generation and capturing of customer information.

Developing writing creatives and offering food for discussion through social media is going to be both challenging and rewarding. With that said, Facebook is pretty much on its way of becoming the focal point for Bradley digital communication channels, whereas Twitter is in need of a deeper planning and better integration within other tools for providing a more diverse digital media promotion. Instagram and Youtube videos are something to look forward to.

The best ah-ha moment of this course was utilizing Google Trends. This application determines keyword and top search phrases, which could be utilized for SEO and help content development with better focus on the target audience. Integration of it’s findings into digital communication would be a part of strategy to improve editorial calendar of events and determine when, how, what and to whom the content should be promoted.

Better results have yet to come, as this project is just a start, but there is definite place in digital content promotion for Lewallen Home Properties with tools that were introduced through this course.

Reference

Hogan, S. (2018, May 04). How long can this hot real estate market last? Retrieved December 10, 2018, from https://www.vbjusa.com/opinion/columns/real-estate-development-column/how-long-can-this-hot-real-estate-market-last/

Patty Hastings. (2017, January 23). Rent or buy? Advice has changed for Clark County. Retrieved November 18, 2018, from https://www.columbian.com/news/2017/jan/23/rent-buy-home-advice-this-year-has-changed/

J. V. (2018, May/June). The Future of email marketing – 2018 edition. Retrieved November 18, 2018, from https://www.emailmonday.com/future-of-email-marketing-automation/

Created By
Mikhail Oparin
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