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Four Ways to Rehumanize Your Business

Four Ways to Rehumanize Your Business

In today’s digital world a human element has been removed from so much of our communication. People now hide behind email or send mass emails to their database. We often receive voicemails from robots. Even text messaging which was once deeply personal, quick communication, has been taken over by promotions and advertisements from companies we didn’t even realize had access to our phone number.

To stand out, it is imperative to be different, and be true to yourself. Because YOU are the differentiator your customers are looking for.

Below we’ve shared four of our favorite ways that can help you “rehumanize your communication,” and in turn, create a phenomenal customer experience that your clients will never forget.

1.) Determine Your Brand Identity Make Sure It’s Front and Center

According to Leadpages.net, the About section is typically one of the four most visited areas of your website. Isn’t that surprising? Now that you know that, think about what you currently have on your about page. Is it personal to you and your team? Does it speak to your values and what makes you – YOU?

It should! If you love dogs, take a cue from Mortgage Broker Alex McFadyen. Alex has created a brand all around his pug, Ernie. His Company is called “The Mortgage Pug,” and he includes his pug in all of his videos! Why? Authenticity! Alex explained that when he started his business “he didn’t want to be just another guy in suit.” He understands that mortgages can sometimes be “stressful, and boring,” so he decided to make it fun! This process has worked wonders for him!

When you’re creating your company branding, or your about page, don’t be afraid to include information about you as a person. Tell your future clients about your family, your hobbies, and even include it in your branding and marketing when it makes sense. People trust people more than brands.

2.) Send a Thoughtful and Personal Gifts

We learned this tip from Joey Coleman in his amazing book, “Never Lose A Customer Again” and it has changed the way we think about gifting.

This sounds simple when you think about it but most people aren’t doing it. How many times have you signed a major deal with a company and received a t-shirt or coffee mug with their logo on it as a thank you gift? It’s kind of a nice gesture, but it’s also a little selfish don’t you think? If you wear that t-shirt or use that mug, you’ll be helping that company expand their brand awareness. Seems pretty one-sided.

Don’t feel bad if you’ve done this – we’ve been guilty of it as well. But change your mindset for future thank you gifts! Think about the conversations you’re having with these people. Did they mention a favorite local restaurant? Are they wine connoisseurs? Do their kids love Legos? Next time you land a major deal, think through previous conversations and send your customers something that they would appreciate. Even if you don’t get them the perfect gift, they’ll think so highly of the fact that you remembered their interests, and it will leave a lasting impression.

3.) Provide Value Within Your Community

The phrase we live by on our marketing team is “Be of value and abundance will follow.” Try to provide your community with valuable information that relates to your interests and your businesses interest.

Social Groups (Like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Meetup) are a great way to get involved with your community. For example, if you’re a real estate agent and you love crafting, join a local crafting group and create content around DIY home decorations. But don’t just sit back and post content. Respond to your peers. Give them feedback and suggestions. Become an active participant within these groups and conversations.

By doing this you’ll build relationships with like-minded people and build your reputation as a reliable resource.

4.) Use Video Email

We could write a whole book on this (in fact we did) because we believe that video is the number one way to bring people back into our digital world. Think about it. If you’re looking for a real estate agent and you receive three generic emails, and one personal video, who are you going to remember? The video of course – and the person inside it.

We recommend using video email in a variety of ways including cold lead follow up, appointment reminders, happy birthday messages, purchase anniversaries and many more. It’s a great way to communicate hard to understand processes, procedures, or even difficult situations.

As we mentioned – there is so much more that can be said on the benefits of using video in business communication. Because of that, we’ve compiled everything we’ve learned with and from our customers over the past 10 years into this easy-to-read, highly informative book.

“Rehumanize Your Business” is a hands‑on guide to adding simple webcam and smartphone videos into your communication mix in order to build trust, save time, and truly connect with people.

It’s been ranked as Amazon’s #1 new release in Sales & Selling, Communication Skills, and several other categories.

It’s been ranked as Amazon’s #1 best seller in Business Sales and Business Communication.

Click here to see where you can purchase it today!

For more helpful tips, visit the BombBomb blog!

The Step by Step Guide to Creating Community Videos That Will Grow Your Business

The Step by Step Guide to Creating Community Videos That Will Grow Your Business

Community Videos can be a really big part of your marketing strategy as a real estate agent. They not only show that you’re passionate and knowledgeable about your community but they also can show what a buyer would get when moving to that part of town. As a realtor, you’re not just selling a home – you are selling an area or neighborhood! Below we’ve made a list of steps to help you confidently film and share a great community video!

What to expect

Time commitment: 3 days total per video
(one day planning, one day filming, one day posting and promoting)

Average budget: between $500 – $2k

Potential outcomes:

  • More followers and viewers on social media
  • More community connections
  • New clients/prospects
  • You establish yourself as a local expert
  • You help promote something you love

1. Decide What You’re Passionate About

The very first step in this process is to decide what part of your community to highlight. You need to pick something you’re excited about and passionate about, whether that be restaurants, parks, non-profit organizations, etc. Judy Weiniger, a community video master, says, “Chose the businesses that excite you.” Don’t force yourself to get excited about a subject you don’t gravitate towards.

We know it can be hard to choose the topic of your first community video, especially if you love a lot of things in your area. We put together a list based on passions and interests to help you get started.

Do you love food & drinks? You could feature….

  • Coffee Shops
  • Restaurants
  • Bars
  • Local Chefs or Bartenders

Do you love shopping and supporting local businesses? You could feature…

  • Small Shops & Boutiques
  • Any New Shop/Business
  • Outdoor Markets

Do you love being active? You could feature…

  • Parks/Trails
  • Gyms
  • Yoga/Dance Studios
  • School Sporting Events

Do you love music & art? You could feature…

  • Art Galleries
  • Local Bands
  • Local Artists
  • Festivals
  • Craft/Pottery Studios

Do you value family? You could feature…

  • Schools/School Programs
  • Libraries
  • Family-Friendly Activities in the Area

Do you love animals? You could feature…

  • Local dog parks
  • Pet-Friendly Restaurants/Bars
  • Local Vets
  • Local Animal Shelters

If you really want to go ALL IN on community videos, you can challenge yourself to feature your 30 favorite places in town over 30 days like Craig Veroni. Craig is one of our Real Estate Video Influencer winners who found a creative way to highlight the best parts of his community on social media. He was trained by Jesse Peters, and Michael Thorne of RE Video Studio.

Also keep in mind that you don’t just have to feature places or events, you can specifically feature people as well! Every community has inspiring individuals that your viewers will love learning more about. Craig Veroni has done another series called My Favourite Humans in Vancouver where he showcased different people.

2. Create a List of Specific Businesses to Reach out to

Once you’ve decided on what type of community videos you want to start with, it’s time to pick specific businesses/places/people to feature! When creating your list, we recommend focusing on a specific part of town. Marguerite Martin, a Real Estate Video Influencer winner in the Community Video Category, specializes in downtown Tacoma, instead of trying to cover her whole city. We also recommend keeping an eye on the news channels, papers and bloggers to see what people are talking about!

Pick the top three things you’d like to feature. Figure out who you need to contact for each topic and gather emails. If you can’t decide between a few places or businesses, ask some other people in the community what they’d prefer to see a video feature on. And like we said before, keep an eye on blogs and the news. Though it’s important to be passionate about what you feature, it’s also important that it will spark your viewer’s interest.

3. Reach Out with Video

Now it’s time to see if you’re able to film your community videos at the places you’ve chosen. Depending on what you choose, you’ll need to reach out to the person who owns or runs the establishment. If you have picked something like a park, you could try to find & contact a person through the City Government. If you’ve picked a business, then you’ll need to reach out to the owner and get permission to do a feature.

We think the very best way to reach out is through a video! It’s a great way to introduce yourself and explain what you are wanting to do. BombBomb makes this very easy to do. You could even go to the place you want to feature and record your introduction video there! (If you’d like to try BombBomb free for 2 weeks – click here!)

Not sure what to say in your email or video? We put together a script that we used to reach out to local businesses here in Colorado Springs!

Hi (Owner/Employee Name),
My name is (first name), I’m the (job title) at (company name).
As a real estate agent, I need to establish myself as an expert on our community and a great way to do that is by filming what we call a community video. For this video, I would really love to highlight your establishment, (business name).
INSERT BOMBBOMB VIDEO
My goal is to show off some awesome places in the community. I absolutely love your business, which is why I’m reaching out to you. If possible, I’d like to come by for a couple hours during a slower time and film a quick video with you. My goal is to capture the story of your business – so I’d love to interview you for part of the filming as well.
Let me know if that is something you’d be interested in! We want nothing in return. Our goal is to simply highlight our community on social media.
Sincerely,
(full name)

One last thing to remember is to make it clear that you aren’t asking for money. Ask for nothing in return. Community videos will be an investment on your part but trust us, it is an investment that’s worth it. Community videos establish you as a local expert. They will grow your following and viewership. They will help people connect you with. They will even help you establish relationships with local business owners who may eventually need to buy or sell their home! Ultimately, your community videos should bring you new clients and prospects as you grow your connections and community presence.

4. Plan a Time to Film Your Videos

The business owner might want to meet with you to plan your video. In that case, make sure to set aside time to meet and plan. You may also be able to work things out over email. We estimate most community videos take around 2 hours of filming on location. Try to schedule all your community videos for one day so you can knock them all out at once.

It’s important to pick the best time for the business owner. They likely won’t want you coming during their busiest time of day. Try to go when you won’t be disruptive with your filming and when the business owner/employees will have the most time to talk with you! If you’re filming a lot outside, try to pick a day where the weather will be nice and pick a time where the sun won’t be too harsh.

5. Hire a Videographer

**Note: This is not mandatory! Many of our video influencers shoot their community videos on their cell phones. But if you’re new to filming, a videographer is a good place to start. We jump to our tips on how to do it yourself in the video below.

We suggest using Judy Weiniger’s method of finding videographers. She says, “How I found mine is through searching videographers who do weddings.” Ask around or post something on Facebook asking for good, local wedding videographers. Most weddings are on weekends so these videographers will often be excited to get side jobs like this during the week.

When choosing a videographer, we suggest watching some of their previous videos to make sure their style aligns with what you want! The average wedding videographer gets paid between $1,000 – $2,500 for a day of filming and editing. If that is outside of your budget, we suggest trying to find an aspiring wedding videographer or a film student. They will probably work with you for a lower budget. (Thank you to BombCast Guest & John L. Scott Real Estate Agent, Paul Balzotti, for this tip!)

If you and a coworker or partner are wanting to tackle this project without hiring anyone, it’s doable! Here are some tips from Visual Storyteller, Matt Mead and Content Marketing Specialist, Alexa Franck. They walk through all the gear you need – both the basic setup and the pro setup.

6. Create a Video Outline

Now it’s time to plan out your video so you’re ready for filming! This plan should include a list of video shots you want, questions you’d like to ask the business owner, details you want the community to know, etc. Write down the script of how you want to intro and outro the video. You don’t have to stick strictly to this script, but it’ll keep you on track while filming! While planning your video, plan out the story that it will tell. Every business and person has a story to tell!

Depending on who you hire, you might sit down with your videographer to plan this out. You can also send this plan over to the business owner for them to approve before the filming. It’s always good to have a second pair of eyes (like the business owner or videographer) to look over your plan so you don’t miss any key points. You don’t want to get done filming and then realize a day later that you missed an important shot or piece of information.

It’s also important to plan for how long you want your videos to be. The ideal length of a YouTube Video is 5-10 minutes so you should shoot for getting enough footage to create this length of video.

Here’s an outline example that we used for our community videos:

Carnelian Coffee Community Video Filming Outline
Video Shot: Alexa in front of the coffee shop
Opening Script: “I’m here at Carnelian Coffee Co in Old Colorado City – only a few minutes away from the BombBomb Office! We’re going to go chat with the owner, and hear all about this cozy little spot!”
B-Roll: Alexa walking down the street into the coffee shop
Video Shot: Kate (coffee shop owner) sitting for interview
Interview Questions:
Tell us about the beginning of your coffee shop and what inspired you to start it!
Walk me through what a typical day at the coffee shop looks like for you!
What are some of the best things you serve/best selling drinks?
What do you want people to experience when they come here?
What makes your place unique?
B-Roll: Kate making a cup of coffee, pulling espresso, steaming milk, etc.
Extra B-Roll Shots:
-Shots of the shop interior and decor.
-A pan shot of the inside and outside.
-Shot of two people talking and drinking coffee.

While we were in the shop, we learned that Kate will only sell merchandise from Colorado Businesses. Because of that, we also got some footage of all of the trinkets she sold at Carnelian. It’s important to remain observant as the owner tells their story, and get shots of the amazing details they share!

Once your video is planned, you have the option of coming up with a clever name for your community video series! Here’s a few great names used by our Community Real Estate Video Influencers! See what other community video creators are doing and get some inspiration:

7. ACTION! It’s Time to Film Your Videos

Filming day has come. If you’ve followed each step and taken our advice, you’ll have scheduled to film a couple of places/business for the day. You will want to have a videographer who’s ready to go and knows what shots are needed. You’ll want to have your outline ready. And fortunately, you’ll also have already built a relationship with the business owner or manager through video or meetings so you’ll feel comfortable filming with them!

Things should go smoothly if you’ve planned accordingly. Our main piece of advice at this point is to have fun and enjoy the process! To build interest in your upcoming community videos, you should go LIVE on Facebook or Instagram before wrapping up your day of filming. You can include the business owner and quickly introduce them or give people a sneak peak of the places you’ll be featuring. Consider it a promo video for your community videos! We recommend going live for at least 5 minutes. If you’re worried about taking a video that long, try to prepare an outline for that video as well.

Try to film another promo video apart from going LIVE. When you go live, it’ll just air on Facebook or Instagram. You’ll want a promo video for other social platforms as well. Film a quick intro in front of each place you’re highlighting. In a promo video, you can inform your viewers when the community video will premiere on your social accounts. You can also give people a sneak peak into the things you’ll be talking about in the community videos.

Here are some examples of our promo videos here at BombBomb: BombBomb Facebook Videos

8. Create a Social Media Plan for the Videos

While your videographer is hard at work getting your videos edited, you can start planning out your social strategy. Here’s the distribution process we recommend for your videos!

Short Community Video Promo

General Guidelines:

  • Video Size: 1080 x 1080 pixels
  • Video Length: 1 minute

Where to Post:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Instagram

Short Community Video Teaser

General Guidelines:

  • Video Size: 1080 x 1080 pixels and 1080 x 1920 pixels
  • Video Length: 15-60 Seconds

Where to Post:

  • 30-60 second square teaser on Instagram and Twitter
  • 15 second vertical teaser on Instagram Story

Full Length Community Video

General Guidelines:

  • Video Size: 1080 x 1920 pixels and 1280 x 720 pixels
  • Video Length: 5-10 minutes

Where to post:

  • Vertical on IGTV
  • Horizontal on YouTube

Medium Length Community Video

General Guidelines:

  • Video Size: 1280 x 720 pixels
  • Video Length: 2-3 minutes

Where to post:

  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn

Create an ad budget for promoting your video on Facebook. You need to pay to get views. We suggest creating a Facebook audience that includes people in your area. You can make your lists more specific as well! If you featured a yoga studio, target people who are interested in yoga, a specific yoga studio, etc.

Another great way to help your videos do well on social is to have the business themselves use the video however they want! Let them use it on their website. Let them share it on their social pages. For them, it’s like a free promotional video so they will probably love sharing it. You can ask them to tag you in their posts.

9. See What Your Audience Loves and Give Them More

If you did three different videos and one performed better than the rest, try to replicate what you did. If your video on a coffee shop performed the best, maybe try to feature another coffee shop. Don’t try to cover all the things in your community. Find your niche and stick to it. If you’re planning to do a series, stick to the topic of your series until you have between 5-10 videos. Then start planning your your next series. You’re becoming a community expert!

Here is the community video we did here at BombBomb! We went out and visited a local coffee shop to film our community video. We used a lot of the tips we listed here in this post and the results have been great. Thanks to Kate Firoved and Carnelian Coffee for letting us stop by!

For more helpful tips, visit the BombBomb blog!

Salesperson’s Guide to Video

Salesperson’s Guide to Video

There’s no denying it – video is everywhere.

It’s clear that video is the right direction to move your business. In fact, 65% of those who were surveyed that did not use video planned to start using video this year. Whether it’s through simple video, or more polished professional video, this guide has the recommendations you need to get a lay of the land and understand what type of video setup and equipment is best for your business. Hint: you may already have everything you need.

In this guide we go through four main types of video setups, including tips and gear suggestions.

We’ll cover Desk, Mobile, Studio and On-the-Go Setups. We provide links to several products to get your search going (and none are affiliate links – simply suggestions). We also cover both BASIC setups and PRO setups. Whether you’re trying to get out of the gate and get going with video or you’re working to up your game and your gear, you’ll find helpful information in this guide.

We also cover 7 Video Setup Strategies to sum everything up

Video doesn’t need to be overwhelming! We sum up the guide with video strategies so you know what the best next steps might be. For instance, we make some camera suggestions in the guide but that doesn’t mean you need to immediately go out and purchase a camera – sometimes the best camera is the one you already have.

If you’re thinking about hiring a video professional or creating your own videos for your own marketing needs, this guide is definitely for you! Start using video for sales at every budget & level.

Looking for an easy way to get started with video? Rehumanize your communication with BombBomb.

___________________________________________________________________________

 

Get the Guide!

 

For more helpful tips, visit the BombBomb blog.

Top Real Estate Content Marketing Tips from 9 Experts

Top Real Estate Content Marketing Tips from 9 Experts

The benefits of producing and distributing real estate content are clear: save time, generate more and warmer leads, build your expertise.

But how do you get started? And how do you get more effective?

Here in this post, get answers from 9 experts to this question: If a real estate agent wanted to be more consistent, intentional, or effective with their content marketing efforts, what one tip would you provide?

1 Marc Davison: 10 Content Tips

1000watt.net

1. Think editorially. 
Know your brand, your voice and marketplace and produce content that is always on brand and provides value to your viewer/reader

2. Don’t publish for publishing’s sake.
 Too often, agents feel like they need to make noise and show up so they post nonsense. A meme. A quote of the day. A picture of their food. If your brand is about frivolity, then this is ok. But if you are trying to build a serious brand, post less, say more.

3. Be consistent.
 Pick a niche and focus on it. I read a lot of content on design and branding. If a design blog I read decided to blog about politics or religion of something off topic, I’d leave and most likely never return.

4. Stay within your category.
 This bolts on to #3 but agents who sell real estate should create content that plays somewhere within this category not outside it.

5. Write like you mean it.
 Just because you want to write and like writing doesn’t mean you can write or should. Nothing kills compelling like bad grammar, poor punctuation, bad sentence structure, etc.

6. Design your content like you mean it.
 Blurry pictures. Poor use of typeface. Self-generated arts and crafts like design scream amateurish.

7. Use an editor. 
No great, smart, successful, compelling writer accomplishes that without help from experts. Find someone you trust to run every bit of content through before it goes live.

8. Wait 24 hours before hitting send.
 Nothing you post is an emergency and no one is sitting anticipating your next round of content. Whatever your write, design, create, when you think it’s done, wait a day and revisit it. 99% of the time, you’ll notice things that you can tweak to make even better.

9. Create an editorial calendar so you know what you are going to write and when.
 This helps keep you focused as a content producer and enables your audience to stay with you as you create.

10. Don’t do what you suck at.
 Just because real estate gurus overzealously preach content creation, this doesn’t mean you need to listen to them. They get paid to cheerlead. They aren’t you. If you don’t like writing, or taking photos or creating content at all – don’t do it. Put that energy into what you are good at and invest everything into that. Apple doesn’t create content. They design and build incredible products. It works for them, this advice will work for you too.

2 Katie Lance: Pick a Day

KatieLance.com

One tip for someone who is starting to be purposeful would be to pick a day you are going to publish content and stick to it.

It doesn’t matter which day but when you are consistently doing something like publishing a weekly video, a weekly blog, or a weekly Facebook Live – people will start to take notice.

Consistency counts as well as consistently promoting that content across email, other social media, Facebook ads, etc. Promotion is the name of the game!

3 Travis Robertson: Consistency for Success

TravisRobertson.com

Consistency is critical. Most people don’t put out consistent content and, therefore, never get very good at it. This, in turn, keeps them from putting out content. The more they put out, the better they get and the more they are able to create. It’s a flywheel in either direction.

4 Kelvin Krupiak: Narrow Your Focus

EasyAgentPro.com

The reason I see a lack of consistency or intent with respect to digital marketing is the agent either doesn’t believe in its potential or they’re overwhelmed. Now if they didn’t believe in the power of digital marketing I assume they wouldn’t be reading this, so let’s say they’re overwhelmed.

The solution here is to narrow your focus: if you’re trying to figure out blogging, video, Snapchat, Facebook, Instagram, and email marketing all at once you’re going to get frustrated and give up. Focus on one platform at a time and add another into your marketing strategy when you’re comfortable. Get consistent with Facebook: grow your audience there, learn how to post to groups, learn how to run ads, get reviews and testimonials on your Facebook business page. Then move to something like creating video since it’s going to become the most dominant form of media in the next two years. Video can then be used to further increase your success in a medium like Facebook or email.

If you’re going to survive in an industry being flooded with new marketing ideas, tips, and strategies narrow your focus.

5 Kendyl Young: Be Yourself

GlendaleDIGGS.com

It sounds cliche, but there’s no other way to say it – “Be yourself.”

Lean into who you are. “You don’t need to be that outsize personality in order to leverage some of the tools we have in video and social media.”

“Be yourself and be authentic.” (NOTE: this means you have to figure out who you are!)

6 Valerie Garcia: Tell a Story

ValerieGarcia.com

It sound trite, but it’s true: Tell a story!

Don’t just tell me about a product or a service. Tell me how it’s going to change my life, or make me laugh, or solve a problem. Tell me about how others use it or love it or hate it. Tell me about the way I am going to feel if I use it or buy it or live in it.

Going that extra step to take your message to a point where I can relate it to my own life is going to make all the difference.

Every single product, service, or home has a story. As a marketer, it’s up to you to find it and tell it.

7 Justin Stutz: Be Local

PoweredByWest.com

Be local. “When I think about some of the best content I receive from businesses, it’s extremely localized. That’s what’s meaningful to me.”

International, national, and state information is all well and good, but 
”when it really comes down to my business partners, I want them to bring information that has to do with the neighborhood I live in, with the city and state I pay taxes in.”

“One advantage real estate agents have that platforms like Zillow don’t is that they can be local connectors and local problem solvers. That’s just something the big boys are never going to be able to compete with.”

8 Andrew Fogliato: Promote Other People

JustSellHomes.com

“Look for people in your area you can help and promote.”

Match local business owners with common consumer questions to promote the area, promote the people, promote the businesses, etc. Don’t just promote yourself!

When you help and promote others, you get better reach, better response, and better results.

9 Jared James: Start

JaredJamesToday.com

Nobody starts as an expert.

That’s it. Nobody starts as an expert.

Don’t get thrown off by someone you watch who is soooo good at delivering great content or is great on video or whatever. We all sucked at some point. My first YouTube video is so bad that I unlisted it.

Becoming an expert is earned by startingsucking, and then getting better. Effort matters and the more you try, the better you will get. Just like nobody starts as an expert … nobody who quits ends as an expert either.

Get the Guide to Compelling Real Estate Content

A huge THANK YOU to these 9 experts for sharing their tips and insights.

Get more from them – and from 8 others, including:

Chris Smith & Jimmy Mackin from Curaytor
Kelly LeClair from LeClair Real Estate
Michael Thorne from TMB Real Estate
Seth Williams from RETipster
Teri Conrad from Agent Quest
Justin Tucker from West/WFG
Seth Price from Placester

Every one of these real estate content pros answers: How do you define compelling real estate content? and What’s one tip you would provide to someone who wants to be more effective?

To get your guide, visit the BombBomb Blog and enter your email address at the end of the page!

Texting Tips for Lead Response (and First Dates!)

Texting Tips for Lead Response (and First Dates!)

Texting Tips for First Dates

First dates and dating are ripe as a metaphor or comparison to lead conversion. Making initial contact. Building trust and rapport. Setting an appointment. Establishing connection. Following up. And that’s what we have here.

The “Captain’s Log” episode of This American Life looks at unemotional facts in logs and records (here: a string of text messages) and unpacks the emotional and complicated aspects behind them.

Eric Klinenberg, a sociologist at NYU, teamed up with actor and comedian Aziz Ansari, on a deep dive into the text messages of people just starting a relationship – right when they first start dating (or not!).

With the text messages as raw data, they were able to examine real-time records of what actually transpired – not just what people remembered and reported back.

Additionally, the research project included conversations with hundreds of people, typically in focus groups of 10-20, across 8 different cities.

Occasionally, they conducted these focus groups live on stage with an audience. This podcast included audio from one of these events at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater – with women on one side of the room and men on the other.

Ansari found 4 male volunteers to share their opening text exchanges with prospective dates. Then, the audience commented on each guy’s text messages and voted for their favorites.

The clear winner started like this:

“How’d your Thanksgiving feast turn out? Here’s a shot of the spread I put together. I’d say it came out alright (smiley face)”

Why the women liked this one best:

  • “It gets the conversation going.”
  • “You asked a question.”
  • “It made you want to comment on it.”
  • “It was personal.”
  • “He remembered what you talked about.”

What did they disliked about some of the others:

  • “It sounded (too transactional*).”
  • “He should’ve asked a question.”

*like he was more into the “transaction” than the relationship – he came on too strong and too shallow

The 3 texting tips from the entire research project:

1. Make a plan.
Invite the person to something specific at a specific time.

2. Ask a question.
Say something that refers back to an earlier conversation to show you were listening. Phrase it as a question to encourage a response.

3. Be funny.
Say something funny.

Another key observation:
The bar for success is quite low. So many people do this so poorly. A little effort goes a LONG way.

Klinenberg and Ansari published these findings and many more in Modern Romance.

 

Texting Tips for Lead Response

The Empathy – Value – Call To Action structure is here.



Asking a question and showing you were listening or paying attention shows empathy. If you’ve not yet met, what do you know about them and how they connected with you?



Being funny here plays as entertainment or value. For you, it’s important to be personal and relatable, but you don’t necessarily have to be funny, per se. Provide value based on what you know about him or her.

Providing a good, clear call to action is fundamental to success and translates directly here. Don’t be vague or leave it open-ended. Be specific. Provide one or two very specific times for a reply, a call, or an appointment. Be clear about what should happen next – and when it can or should happen.

You’ll dramatically increase your likelihood of success in connecting and getting that initial phone call or appointment.

Of course, doing it with a video makes it all more personal, human, and differentiating.

Doing it from your iPhone or Android assures that they’ll have your proper number and that replies come back to your number.

For more helpful tips, visit the BombBomb Blog

8 Common Mistakes That Cost Real Estate Agents Repeat and Referral Business

8 Common Mistakes That Cost Real Estate Agents Repeat and Referral Business

1) Not asking for referrals (simple, right?!)

It may seem like a no-brainer, but – again – too many agents simply think that repeat and referral business will just happen on its own.  While this is true in very select and sporadic circumstances, this is a considerably weak strategy to bet on.

When it comes down to it, you don’t know unless you ask. And if you don’t ask, the answer is always no.

 

2) Only thinking about referrals when you need referrals

For many agents, generating referrals becomes an afterthought to driving new business. They just happen organically, right?

Nope.

You can’t wait until your pipeline is dry to begin trying to drum up repeat and referral business. Instead, plant the seed for referrals starting with your very first interaction by giving them an incredible client experience.

And assume the close. Make referrals a normalized expectation in the ways you communicate with current and past clients.

 

3) Providing a forgettable, cookie-cutter experience

In this hyper-connected, online-reviewed, and digital age, people are loyal to brands they connect with in a meaningful way through unforgettable experiences. How your brand communicates is a big part of that.

You, as your own brand and company, have the opportunity to craft a memorable experience through sincere, personal touches that can reach buyers and sellers on any device no matter where they are. Tools like BombBomb make this easier than ever.

Here are some examples:

  • Sending a text message showing reminders to prospective buyers
  • Sharing listings with clients via social media
  • Sending monthly market update emails with client-focused meaning
  • Triggering autoresponders from website inquiries
  • Creating and sending personalized video walkthroughs
  • Reaching out on holidays and special occasions

 

4) Disappearing after the sale

Obviously, it’s important that your relationships with buyers and sellers don’t end once the transaction is closed.

Now that commission is no longer on the line, your clients don’t necessarily expect you to keep in touch with them.  Incomplete and lackluster customer experiences have trained them to think this way.

This is a great opportunity for you to “WOW” them on occasions like birthdays, purchase/move anniversaries, and holidays. Easy and simple messages like these contribute to an unforgettable and extended experience with you.

Here at BombBomb, we advocate getting in front of your webcam or smartphone camera and sending at least one video a month to your database to stay top of mind for repeat and referral purposes. However, this doesn’t mean you should ask for referrals on a monthly basis.

Simply get your face, voice, and personality back in front of your sphere of influence every 30 days or so with a simple video. Share a tip, idea, or update that relates to the special place on Earth that you live and work.

80% of people recall a video they’ve watched in the past 30 days. So, by sending a video of yourself once per month, you ensure that you’re always top of mind. [Insivia]

 

5) Sending non-segmented messages

Although staying top of mind is vital, you want to stay top of mind in the right way.

You don’t want to be that agent who just constantly blasts their database with irrelevant nonsense. You don’t want to send an email just for sending’s sake. You want to truly connect with someone and generate a conversation.

By segmenting your database into specific categories (new buyer leads, new seller leads, past buyers, past sellers, zip code, price range, A/B/C clients, agents, lenders, etc.), you’re able to send targeted messages that are more relevant to each recipients. This drives higher engagement over a longer period of time.

The days of mass-blasting are over.

 

6) Not GIVING referrals

There’s a “scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours” mentality that tends to get overlooked during the grind of converting leads and serving clients.

By networking with and providing referrals to agents, lenders, and other professionals, you’re building an extremely fruitful referral network that you can legitimately build your business on.

 

7) Being unreferrable

Maybe you knocked your client’s socks off, but – for whatever reason – you feel uncomfortable asking him or her for referrals.

If this sounds like you, then you NEED to create an easy way for your clients to refer you to a friend, family member, or co-worker on their own. And if you do ask for referrals, you should still do this, too.

Create a referral form on your website, or put a “Refer a Friend” link in your signature that redirects to the form. If you want to go the extra mile, create an autoresponder email from that referral form, or redirect them to a custom “Thank You” page upon submission.

 

8) Not scaling yourself

At the end of the day, you are your very best sales asset.  As the face of your own brand in a human-to-human industry, YOU — your personality, actions, and expertise — drive your business forward.

Unfortunately, it’s impossible for you to be hands-on and in-person with everyone, everywhere, all the time. Therefore, it’s vital that you diligently craft your digital communications as a reflection and extension of yourself and the value that you provide.

Hint: video’s a GREAT way to do this. It lets you be there in person when you can’t be there in person.

For more helpful tips, visit the BombBomb Blog

5 Real Estate Apps To Make an Agent’s Life Easier

5 Real Estate Apps To Make an Agent’s Life Easier

Feel like your face is in your phone too much? It’s okay … real estate apps make your life easier! Doing business from the palm of our hands, on the go, is the new standard for daily life.

Especially for real estate agents, it feels like there’s a new app launched daily to make business easier and faster.

Apps that market you, market a home, or save you a trip to the office between showings – there’s definitely something new out there you should try.

Here are five that might be helpful to you.

 

5 Real Estate Apps

Glympse

We’ve all been a little late for an appointment, right? Glympse allows you to send a quick message to your clients with your real-time location. So if you’re just a few minutes behind, they’ll see exactly where you are. It’s great for families, too.

 

2 CamScanner

Save time and money running back to your office to scan documents. CamScanner allows you to snap a picture of the document and convert it to a PDF or an editable text document. You’ll get the same quality as if you were in the office – without the hassle.

 

PalmAgent

Get accurate, quick, estimates for closing costs for your buyers and sellers with PalmAgent. County-specific closing costs, title rates, and lender fees are preloaded in the app for your convenience.

 

Open Home Pro

Get more leads, and production from your open houses. Use Open Home Pro to organize notes about the property, collect visitor information, plus it will send automatic follow-up emails to those who visited the home.

 

BombBomb

Connect with prospects and clients in a more personal way with video messaging from BombBomb. Record videos or grab them from your library. Send by email, in text, or to social. You’ll save time by talking instead of typing and engage people in a more human way than a plain email or text message. BombBomb analytics will prove it.

Now, creating simple, memorable videos is easier than ever in the BombBomb app with exciting new functions. Try the new  iMessage integration, the Clips integration which allows you to add text to your video while recording, or the new camera upgrades that allow you to flip your camera from front to back, pause recording all in the same clip. Android users, you can look forward to a whole new app rebuilt with more functionality. It’s currently in beta testing and will be ready soon.

Real Estate Agent as Therapist: 5 Tips to Soothe Your Buyers and Sellers

Real Estate Agent as Therapist: 5 Tips to Soothe Your Buyers and Sellers

Have you ever felt like a therapist to your home buyers and sellers?

If you’re like many of our real estate customers, the answer is an easy and immediate “heck, yes!”

Dealing with unrealistic expectations, compromises, negotiations, difficulty letting go, the thrill of finding “the one” … homeownership is most likely the largest investment of their lives, both emotionally and financially.

Of course, the process can be a mental rollercoaster for everyone involved – including the real estate agent.

We’ve rounded up five tips to make your clients feel more at ease from beginning to end and – most importantly – to continue building trust and confidence in your judgement.

1 Ask Questions to Help Clients Truly Understand Their Motivations and Desires (Buyers)

Buyers often believe a new home will make them significantly happier.

And while it may, their happiness is definitely dependent on the trade-offs involved. For example, your buyers may believe that choosing a larger home away from their job or another lifestyle tradeoff, is a good option.

Unfortunately, this isn’t usually the case. Committing significant portions of your day to commuting to work daily tends to increase stress and detract from overall happiness.

Help your clients keep the whole picture in mind so they make the right decision when purchasing a home.

2 Justify Reasonable Asking Prices by Simplifying Market Data and Your Knowledge of the Community (Sellers)

Many factors can cause your seller to want to put their home on the market. For example, are they first time sellers? Are they dealing with grief over something like death or divorce? Something of that nature can cause clients to try and overprice their home.

Obviously, you’re the pro. You have the market data. You know the community. You have the pricing strategy. But facts alone can’t turn these sellers around.

We make our decisions emotionally, then rationalize them to ourselves. So leading with empathy for their position and aligning with their point of view builds the buy in you need to bridge over to a reasonable price and strategy. Consistent with “facts tell, stories sell,” if you have a cautionary tale in your pocket, this is a great time to share it.

We’ve heard success stories from clients who have used recorded video messages when communicating with their clients about a lower asking price. This allows you to make a more empathetic and emotional appeal, while giving them the space they need to absorb the feeling and the facts you provide.

In one recent success story, Nancy earned her clients an extra $35,000 in this way.

3 Connect them with a Great Lender (Buyer)

You probably already require your buyers to have a pre-approval letter before you take them on as a client. But that doesn’t say anything about their familiarity or comfort with the entire process.

The most common reason closings fall through is lack of communication. It’s also the likely cause of most of the emotional crises you deal with as a real estate therapist.

Between you and the mortgage professional, keep buyers calm by outlining the entire process, then focusing on the next few steps. Emphasize the importance of compliance, accuracy, and timeliness from the very first meeting and onwards.

As you well know, you may have to pick up some slack here – or the lender may meet you more than halfway on it. Regardless, an informed buyer is a comfortable buyer – and this assures a clean closing.

4 Set Expectations Ahead of Time (Sellers)

The selling process can be a crazy ride. Many first-time sellers think they’re in the clear as soon as they’ve accepted an offer, which is obviously not the case.

From the inspection, to the appraisal, to the actual transaction closing itself, pitfalls abound. And when something goes south, who’s the therapist with open ears, a big heart, and the right answers? You are.

As with buyers and the borrowing process, sellers need to see the entire process from the get go – then smaller next steps as you proceed. Disappointment is a function of expectations, so set them ahead of time and manage them throughout.

What you know well, your sellers should, too: no deal’s done until the closing papers are signed, and the funds are transferred.

5 Use Video to Help Clients Resonate with Good and Bad News (Both)

Buying or selling a home is an emotionally charged process for everyone involved. Your top goals here: amplify the positive and mitigate the negative.

When a buyer’s offer is chosen against many others in a seller’s environment, celebrate it. Instead of using your phone to text your clients at that moment, open the BombBomb mobile app and send a congratulatory video. By showcasing your raw emotion and excitement for the buyer at that moment, face-to-face, you’ll give your buyers the chance to always associate you with the happiness they felt.

And when you’ve got bad news, they need time to process it. An in-person meeting or live phone call demands they react in real time. Give them space and show them empathy by recording and sending a personal video. Use BombBomb analytics to know exactly when they open it and watch your video and follow up accordingly.

Emotionally charged situations – both positive and negative – are featured in our free webinar “Top 10 Times Video Says It Better Than Typed-Out Text.”

Click here to watch it at your convenience. You’ll see real examples and get deeper understanding of how to enhance your role as therapist with simple webcam and smartphone videos.

Real Estate Agent as Therapist: Get Face to Face

You’re better in person. You win when you’re face to face. But you don’t always have the time or opportunity to get together with every client on every update or decision.

When you can’t be there in person, video is the next best thing. Your face, voice, personality, expertise, enthusiasm, sincerity, and all those other rich, nonverbal cues come through in a way plain emails, text messages, social posts, or even voicemails simply can’t deliver.

Especially in your role as therapist, video will help you calm buyers and sellers, smooth out transactions, and improve overall customer experience.

For more helpful tips, visit the BombBomb Blog