Michael Scrase-Hollamby reached 10,000 potential customers by sharing one bite-sized video a day on social media. “I thought it was time to put Ezytrac on the map, let people know who we are and what we do. People are always interested in what’s happening in the lettings market and I can give that information out freely,” says the General Manager of Ezytrac Property Management, whose short videos have already received more than 10,000 views this year. “What other lettings agency can say they’ve engaged with a client base of that size?”
Scrase-Hollamby notes that landlords have always been very difficult to identify and videos could be one way of reaching them. “You just don’t know who’s out there watching at the end of the day - this might get us out there and let them find us,” he says. “Once you’ve got to a point where you’ve gained people’s trust and they know who you are, I believe it will be at that point they’ll think ‘Actually, these guys can help me out and I want to do business with them’.”
His approach is one championed by letting agent consultant Christopher Watkin, who says “letting agents need to become the digital mayors of their town” by creating regular videos about their town’s property market and sharing them on their agency’s website and social media channels in order to demonstrate their expertise.
The concept, which was originally created by American marketing expert Gary Vaynerchuk, has become popular with agents across the Atlantic and Watkin believes it’s the way forward for letting agents in the UK who want to win more landlords by building trust and credibility in their local area. “They need to become their town’s local property expert,” says Watkin. “Everyone says they’re a property expert and they know the local market, but they don't actually talk about the market.”
Vaynerchuk suggests going even further than just talking about the property market by interviewing locals and reviewing restaurants, because people choose where they want to live or invest for a variety of reasons. “Some of them are practical: public transportation, distance to schools,” he says. “But how about making it a little warmer and interviewing Mrs Robinson the third grade teacher? I remember a realtor telling me that someone moved to Short Hills because of Wine Library.”
Watkin says the long-term benefits of this approach will be even better. “If you want to sell something, the first thing you need to get is attention and engagement. It will follow through, you just need to be patient,” he says. “You’ll be the number one player in five years' time.”
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