A familiar face in the Super Bowl commercial lineup, Rocket Mortgage® knows a thing or two about marketing. Here, the company’s Chief Marketing Officer Casey Hurbis discusses key marketing trends real estate professionals should follow to build their brand and stand out among the competition. He also describes his favorite marketing initiative to date.
Paige Tepping: Please provide a brief overview of your history in the industry and how you ended up where you are today at Quicken Loans®.
Casey Hurbis: I joined Quicken Loans as chief marketing officer nearly three and a half years ago, and it has been an awesome run since. We are a true in-house agency with more than 300 team members who support Rocket Mortgage®, Rocket HomesSM and other related fintech brands. Prior to joining the company, I spent 24 years in automotive marketing where I worked on both the agency and corporate side.
PT: When it comes to marketing, what are some of the best ways for real estate professionals to build their brand and stand out among the competition?
CH: In addition to knowing they can trust the real estate professional they’re working with, clients want to feel confident throughout the process—beginning with the initial online search and ending with closing on their dream home. One of the best ways for real estate professionals to instill this trust is by utilizing the marketing channels clients have access to, which is why I recommend every real estate professional have a presence and maintain regular updates on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and LinkedIn. From there, take some time to think about your audience—determine what they are looking to consume and utilize your expertise to deliver content that is relevant.
As the industry continues to change and evolve at a rapid pace, people are thirsty for education. They want to understand the current trends and how they stand to affect their real estate goals. While education is a key piece of the puzzle, real estate professionals shouldn’t overlook the importance of connecting with their audience and promoting their brand. For example, professionals can entice prospective buyers by posting high-quality images of current listings. Also, by focusing on the long game and going above and beyond to keep clients happy, real estate professionals can set themselves up for continued success in the form of referrals.
PT: How can real estate professionals keep their messaging interesting and engaging?
CH: Knowing who your audience is and how to deliver your message is critical. After that, it’s all about making sure the story you’re telling and the content you’re sharing is relevant and interesting to the client. Since buyers fall into many different age groups, it’s important to demonstrate flexibility in communicating via the platform or technology each target market is most comfortable using.
Also, be sure to focus on education as a way to draw in clients. Everybody wants to feel informed, and while the real estate process is challenging, prospective buyers are looking to the professionals as educators. Finally, creating a feedback loop and asking clients to fill out a survey about what type of content they want to see is another great way for agents to keep their messaging both interesting and engaging.
PT: What should real estate professionals avoid when creating marketing materials?
CH: Real estate professionals should avoid being overly “fluffy.” There’s a lot of noise out there today. Clients are consuming so many messages across a wealth of platforms, so it’s more critical than ever for you to represent your brand as authentic, relevant and real. If you make sure everything you do is rooted in reality, the clients will come.
PT: How has marketing changed over the years, and why is it important for real estate professionals to consistently market themselves—no matter the market?
CH: Regardless of how much the marketing landscape changes and what housing looks like at any given time, building and developing relationships will pay dividends in the long run. This is something today’s real estate professionals can attest to more than ever given the COVID-19 pandemic. While the world was forced to shelter in place, people looked at their homes through an entirely different lens—and many came to the conclusion that the space they called home was no longer right for them and their families. Even though the broad economy was down in various parts of the country, people began to look around and better understand where the housing market could go, which caused a huge surge in mortgage applications for home purchases. One thing the pandemic has taught us is that we have to live in the now, but plan and be prepared for the future.
PT: What is your No. 1 piece of advice for real estate professionals who are looking to create marketing materials that will set them apart?
CH: Consistency, consistency, consistency. It’s okay to make small tweaks here and there based on market feedback and/or market conditions, but if you’re constantly changing your brand or messaging, clients may not be able to recognize your business over time. Being consistent and true is a long-term play.
PT: What is one of the most creative marketing initiatives you’ve spearheaded during your time at Quicken Loans?
CH: The Super Bowl campaign we did this year with Jason Momoa (aka Aquaman) is one that stands out most in my mind. Jason is arguably one of Hollywood’s hottest stars at the moment, and he was awesome to work with. A seven-month labor of love, the campaign offered us a way to present getting a mortgage for the home of your dreams in a new light.
The above article is sponsored content. For more information, please visit RealEstate.QuickenLoans.com.
Paige Tepping is RISMedia’s managing editor. Email her your real estate news ideas at email@example.com.