You’ve probably heard that it’s good to buy local when it comes to food: food from local farms is fresher, and when you buy local, it helps to support local industry. Well, local (or hyperlocalism) is also a pretty good thing when it comes to real estate marketing, too.
What is hyperlocalism?
Hyperlocalism is the focus on a specific local area. From a marketing standpoint, most consumers are focused on what is going on in their local area more than in the city at large. Because of this, it helps to know your local area like the back of your hand.
Additionally, buyers who search online for a local area are much further along in their home search and easier to convert. (Read The Long Tail by Chris Anderson for more on this concept.) For example, a person who searches for homes for sale in a specific community is much further along in the decision-making process than a person who searches homes for sale at the city or state level.
There are several easy ways to go hyperlocal with your business both online and off. Here are five simple ways to get started once you have selected a community for your next hyperlocal campaign:
Become the local neighborhood expert. Don’t just say that you are the expert, but be the expert. Tour every possible home for sale in the area. Know the floor plans; know the inventory. Know what has sold and for how much. Learn about the HOA, the schools, and the locations of all the parks and local businesses. It helps to know your market. When you make contact with a prospective buyer or seller, you are on top of your game and can visualize their home or the home of their dreams before even beginning an area search.
Sponsor local events. Whether it is a neighborhood garage sale day, a food collection drive, or contributions at local school events, it is important to be an active member of the area that you want to farm. Don’t keep your name a secret. Network with neighbors and make sure the first real estate name that comes to mind is yours.
Send direct mail campaigns. Keep the neighbors apprised of local home sales and home values through flyers and postcards. Consider investing in online lead capture postcards where owners can visit a website and enter in a code in order to assess their own home’s value. That way, you’ll know when owners in the local area may be considering selling their home.
Create social media pages. Consider making a Facebook page for your local area or areas à la nextdoor.com. If you get enough “likes”, you can engage the neighbors and provide relevant information. Include real estate market info and also announcements about other local events and topics that may interest the community.
Create hyperlocal online content. If you want to soup up your online presence in a certain community, create lots and lots of keyword-rich content about the community you have selected. The more specific the content, the higher your content will rank on the search engine results pages. Use the Google Keyword Planner to create an online strategy. (Again, check out The Long Tail for more on this concept.)
Buying local is good when it comes to fruits and vegetables. It’s also good when it comes to real estate relationships. Real estate searches start online, but they continue with you. It is you who knows the subtle nuances of the area; it is you who knows the floor plans, and it is you who can finesse the situation in order to help your next home buyer or home seller.