This week, we talked with Matt Spangler, chief marketing officer for Compass.
Boston Agent (BA): Real estate is largely referral based, but that doesn’t negate the important role marketing plays in maintaining a successful business. How can people in the industry determine what is the most effective marketing method for them?
Matt Spangler (CMO): Some people separate the concept of referrals from marketing, but we don’t see it that way. At Compass, we view marketing as every instance of brand interaction both direct and through our network of agents. Rather than focusing on one brochure or listing campaign at a time, we take a more holistic, experiential approach. The reality is that having a strong marketing program exponentially serves our agents’ networks. From email to brochures, to advertising, to social media – trust and quality is the fuel that drives referral business, and our marketing approach allows us to illustrate our differentiators at every touchpoint.
By sharing beautifully-designed, data-driven content, we reach potential buyers and sellers on a more sophisticated, continuous level. People experience micro-moments all the time – on their phones, through social networks, when they check email, or listen to online radio stations – and our marketing delivers just that. By divorcing ourselves from traditional, transactional marketing approaches, we’re able to create messaging that resonates with consumers at every stage.
BA: How does Compass set itself apart with its marketing?
MS: Our incredibly talented in-house team constantly seeks to maximize the classic marketing triangle: speed, cost and quality. As we simultaneously build a nationally-known brand and support our agents’ individual needs, we seek to develop tools that allow for customization while still maintaining a consistent and elevated aesthetic. Our Instagram video generator, a proprietary tool we developed in-house, is a perfect example. With it, our agents can create a compelling, 15-second video illustrating a listing’s features and key details within an hour. Not only does it visually align with the Compass brand standards, but it eliminates the need for the outside vendors that a project of this scale would have previously required. This goal of constant improvement and helping build tools that make our agents better really separates us.
BA: Is print marketing dead or can it still be an effective tool in real estate? How?
MS: The reality is that “print” is simply one medium. Given our comprehensive approach, we design every project to take a variety of forms – paper, digital and experiential – so we don’t measure value by a single platform. We concentrate first on the quality of the content, design and product, and then we think about how we can maximize engagement with the right audience.
For our Compass Quarterly, this meant the creation of a portable keepsake that agents could deliver alongside seller pitches and display for buyers at open houses. We sized it for insertion into newspapers in order to achieve targeted distribution at an affordable price, and our digital and social extensions ensured its ongoing longevity to reach agents, sellers and buyers.
Ultimately, intelligent and beautiful print pieces can be tremendously effective in creating lasting memory, but leveraging their potential requires equal investment in distribution and strategy.
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