Quite possibly no other component of digital marketing has been as subjected to the imaginations of conspiracy theorists as SEO has. Almost every year, new claims come out about the death of SEO which are then consequently debunked by experts in the field. But this time, the assertion isn’t coming from marketers pushing for more PPC campaigns, but from concerned content creators themselves.
So why are experienced professionals in the field worried that 2019 could signal the death knell of SEO? Here are a couple of factors that might explain their fears.
With every SERP feature that Google adds, click-through-rates take another dip. In the past, if a user were to search for the weather, they would have to click on a result, enter the website and look for their answer on the page. But now? The search results would look something like this:
This feature is great for users who can now get their queries answered faster, but for a website? Not so much!
These new features don’t just affect broad searches but long-tail queries as well. A first-time real estate investor, for instance, might search for ‘how to calculate stamp duty’ to clear up their questions on it. When they do that, Google will present them the answer neatly packaged in this featured snippet:
If you are wondering how to get the coveted featured snippet. Here is an interesting video:
Since the user already has the answer to their question, they might not feel the need to actually click on the website. What this means for content creators and website owners is that while their search rankings might improve, overall organic traffic to the website might not grow proportionally.
Businesses, understandably, want users to visit their website for all information related to them. This is especially important for local businesses such as restaurants and cafes since purchase intent is typically higher for local searches. However, Google might be hoarding most of this traffic for itself. If a user searches for cafes or restaurant, for example, their search results today looks very different than it did just a few years ago. In the past, they would see a restaurant listing when searching for ‘Chinese food near me’, click on the website link that appealed to them and check out the menu and contact details on their website.
Today, while they will still see restaurant listings, clicking on one will take them to Google Maps and not the restaurant's website.
Of course, a user will still be able to utilise the information provided by Google to visit the restaurant or make a reservation (and thereby convert into a customer). But a business’ website might have less reach and decreased organic performance.
For the last few years, a mobile-first approach to SEO (and almost everything related to digital marketing) has been adopted by marketers everywhere by implementing strategies like AMP. The number of mobile users and mobile searches have also been on an upward trajectory in the last few years, underlining the importance of mobile SEO. However, recent statistics about the nature of mobile searches have emerged, making marketers wonder if mobile SEO still has the same ‘do-or-die’ effect that it did a year ago.
According to Rand Fishkin of Moz, mobile no-click searches have grown by 11 percent, almost 2.5 percent higher than no-click searches on desktop. With these seemingly gloomy numbers, it’s no wonder that websites and brands are worried that they might be losing out on a chunk of their organic mobile audience.
Voice search can be interpreted as both a boon and a bane for marketers. On one hand, it’s a growing new platform to make their brand more visible to users and one of the biggest digital marketing trends of 2019. On the other hand, no-click searches are most prevalent on voice search. For brands and marketers, this poses a unique conundrum: is voice search worth ranking for or will it provide absolutely no value in terms or traffic and brand awareness?
The simple answer to that question is, no. With SEO, when one door closes, another opens. There are certainly many facets of SEO that are dead or dying today, but that has always been the case since its inception. As users, platforms and Google’s algorithm evolves, SEO needs to adapt to keep up.
Instead of getting bogged down by all the alarming statistics being thrown around about the end of SEO, marketers should instead focus on realigning their SEO strategy in the following ways.
If there’s one keyword that Google cannot steal traffic from, it’s searches for your brand. For example, if a user were to search for just ‘digital marketing companies in India’, Google would first list out map listings of companies.
However, if they were to directly search for ‘Social Beat’, none of Google’s SERP features would show up to distract them from clicking on our website.
Going forward, therefore, brands need to focus on building the strength and volume of branded searches if they want relevant traffic on their website.
Most keyword research today consists of analysing keyword volume and difficulty alone. But with the new SERP features, high volume keywords don’t necessarily guarantee high traffic from them. To counteract this, content creators should include a third dimension when choosing keywords to optimise their content with: CTR percentage. By carefully choosing a keyword that has a high click-through-rate, content marketers can be assured that they will be creating content that will drive organic traffic to their website and not just adding to Google’s no-click search percentages.
You can do a simple CTR analysis through most keyword research tools. In this example, we used Ahrefs to dig deep into our focus keyword, ‘digital marketing blogs’. According to the results that the tool gave us, this keyword is worth trying to rank for as 65% of those searching for the keyword have clicked on a result.
In the case of SERP features, content marketers are better off following the adage, ‘If you can’t beat them, join them!’. A featured snippet, can either steal traffic from your website or increase it depending upon how you tailor your information for it. If a user can get all the information they require for their query from the snippet without having to actually click on the link, chances are they aren’t going to visit your website. But if you can offer users just enough information and intrigue them so they click on your link to read more, then the featured snippet can be the most powerful tool in your arsenal to drive traffic to your website.
For example, if a user knows that this list includes 10 mobile wallets, but the snippet only displays a few of them, they will be more likely to click on the link to read the full list.
Creating 10x content and using long-tail keywords have always been the cornerstones of modern SEO, but they were never more important than they are today. The goal for content marketers today is to create in-depth content on nuanced topics that cannot be pigeonholed into any of Google’s SERP features. Essentially, the longer a keyword is, the greater the chance of your actual website ranking for it and not an answer box or any other feature.
Even if parts of your content can snag a featured snippet, it should offer your audience several useful elements that they need to click on your link to explore. The demand for interactive content is on the rise and thankfully, Google hasn’t found a way to display interactive tools directly on SERP yet. Tools like calculators, interactive maps, planners and more can drive organic traffic to your website and offer immense value to your readers.
If SEO is dying, then the one thing offering it CPR is pillar content. This unique comprehensive content format has created waves in the SEO sphere, promising almost an instant surge in traffic and even several high-quality leads. The secret ingredient that makes pillar content so powerful is that it is linked to several related articles within your blog, providing instant link juice to each of them. Because of this, organic traffic to your blog and overall website improve dramatically.
For example, we created a pillar for our client Shriram Properties on ‘A Complete Guide for First-Time Homebuyers in India’. Within a matter of weeks, it started ranking for over 1000 keywords in total and for 100 keywords on page 1. Achieving similar results for a regular page within such a short time span would have been close to impossible with a regular page.
If there’s one thing that has stayed constant in the ever-fluctuating landscape of SEO, it’s that meta descriptions and titles can make or break your organic traffic. These two elements are the simplest, yet most crucial aspects of SEO. If all your hard work has helped your content reach Page 1, but the title and description aren’t compelling enough for users to click on it, your traffic is unlikely to show any improvement. It is also important that content creators don’t get disillusioned by the variety of SERP features available today. A study by Ahrefs found that featured snippets get only 8.6 percent of clicks, while the next result gets 19.6 percent of the clicks!
So even if your brand has lost out on the featured snippet, it doesn’t necessarily mean that your organic traffic will drop because of it.
Instead of putting all your eggs in a single basket, barnacle SEO offers you a way to spread your chances to drive more traffic and increase brand visibility. Today, ‘aggregator sites’ are more visible on Google than they ever were. These sites, for example, Zomato, Urban Clap and Little Black Book, list companies and services on their website. If a user were to search for best massage parlour in Chennai, their search results are most likely to throw up aggregator sites and not individual massage parlour websites.
Is this disheartening for individual businesses? Not necessarily. Trying to compete with aggregator sites will be a David vs. Goliath situation since these sites are typically larger and have a higher domain authority. Instead, businesses should try to get featured on aggregator sites to make their target audience aware of their brand and increase traffic to their website. Getting featured on a compilation can also increase the brand’s credibility in the eyes of the user.
With all the panic about Google’s CTR shrinking, many marketers tend to forget the second largest search engine in the world: YouTube. YouTube is beneficial for marketers for two reasons: 1. It’s a new platform to reach out to users and 2. It can help brands rank on Google as well.
The number of subscribers and video views on YouTube is growing exponentially - particularly in India. If you are finding it challenging to rank for a relevant keyword on Google because of high competition, YouTube could be an excellent way to circumvent this. You can read our in-depth blog on YouTube SEO Tips: The Secret Sauce to Ranking Your Videos to get started!
The second reason to optimise your videos for YouTube is just as important. One of Google’s SERP features is video listings pulled from YouTube that are related to a search term. If your brand is able to create a video that also ranks on Google’s SERP, then you will automatically be able to increase visibility and awareness of your brand.
This strategy is a great way for marketers to beat Google at its own game and use SERP features to their advantage.
You can also check out our video on 'YouTube SEO: 8 Powerful Tips to Help Rank Your Videos'.
Voice search can be viewed as a disruptor or facilitator, but one thing’s for sure: marketers cannot afford to ignore it. Here are just a few incredible statistics on the growing importance of voice search:
To avoid being left behind in the voice search wave, marketers need to optimise their websites and brands to appear for voice queries. This can also help them reach out to new internet audiences, those who are from tier 2 and 3 cities and are more comfortable using voice than typing out a query.
If there’s one thing that hasn’t changed, it’s that content marketing backed by continuous optimisation still has the highest ROI compared to any other type of campaign. By getting an early head start and implementing these elements in your content strategy before your competitors do, you can cement your position on Google’s SERP and gain a high content marketing ROI.
As a landmark development, YouTube has now expanded its non-skippable ad format to more creators, brands and advertisers who are looking to monetise their content. One of the many advantages of non-skippable ads is that your brand can reach its target audience with a complete message. Also, since there is no option to skip the video, your customers have no choice, but to watch the entire ad campaign. With a duration of 15 seconds, non-skippable in-stream ads are very short in nature and pop up before, in between or after a video.
Ideally, non-skippable ads appear on YouTube, partner sites and apps associated with the Google Display Network. The charges for the ads are estimated based on CPM (cost per thousand impressions) bidding. In this case, you need to pay each time when your ad is shown 1000 times.
When it comes to the goal of your marketing campaign, your ad campaign dashboard gives you a plethora of options such as sales, leads, product & brand consideration, app promotion, website traffic and brand awareness & reach. For non-skippable in-stream ads choose your primary marketing objective as “brand awareness & reach”. The next step is to opt for your campaign type as “video”.
Ideally, YouTube offers 5 different forms of campaign subtypes such as standard awareness, skippable in-stream, non-skippable in-stream, outstream ads for mobile and ad sequence. So, when your marketing objective is brand awareness & reach, you need to set your campaign subtype to non-skippable in-stream ads.
The first step in executing your ad campaign is to give the title of your campaign. Make sure your campaign name is within the limit of 120 characters. The next important task is to enter your budget value. This can be either total or daily accepted value. Once you set your budget, you can customise your campaign flight dates and other settings such as language and location. It will be great if you opt for video partners on the Digital Network to ensure maximum reach.
For non-skippable in-stream ads, the bidding strategy should be set to Target CPM (cost per thousand impressions). Ideally, through Target CPM, you are signing up for the average amount for every thousand times when your ad is shown.
Choose an appropriate YouTube video which will be used for the ad campaign. Please note that your video ad cannot be longer than 15 seconds. If you wish to run a 20 second video ad, you have to contact the Google team for a whitelist request.
This is the stage in which you are all set to display your non-skippable in-stream ad to your target audience. You can measure the performance of your ad campaign by checking the completion rate in intervals of 25%, 50%, 75% and 100%. However, statistics such as average cost per view, number of views and view rate will not be displayed in the case of non-skippable in-stream ads, since they are measured based on impressions alone.
With so many innovations and advanced features, this is the right time for brands and advertisers to venture into YouTube advertising. The biggest advantage is that new features like non-skippable in-stream ads play a huge role in executing cost-effective ad campaigns to reach the next billion internet users in India. Apart from this, they also give you the opportunity to monitor real time insights about the views of your ad campaign.
For more tips on how to rank your videos, read our in-depth article: YouTube SEO Tips: The Secret Sauce to Ranking Your Videos in 2019.
Marketing for any product or service digitally has now become mandatory. With over 234 million internet users currently, the digital market has really opened up a plethora of opportunities for brands today. Real estate is one such industry that has really benefitted from the digital marketing wave. According to research, around 92% of potential buyers do vigorous research online before they ultimately make the purchase offline. Hence, making sure you have a strong digital marketing strategy is of the utmost importance to make your brand name stand out in the real estate industry. To learn more please do read our book on digital marketing or subscribe to our YouTube channel.
So, what makes digital marketing for real estate such a vital tool for developers and home seekers?
Marketing techniques are open to evolve and get better over time. Additionally, if you are an ardent user of the digital space for marketing your products, you know it comes with numerous benefits. Apart from the urban space, digital marketing is evolving in tier 2 and tier 3 cities of India as well. Real estate developers are yet to realise these benefits and are only scratching the surface when it comes to taking full advantage of what digital marketing has to offer. Here’s where digital marketing in real estate gives developers an edge, with a multitude of digital marketing trends to expect in 2017.
For any real estate developer who is hoping to succeed, digital marketing is a great place to start. Developers not using this medium are losing out a plethora of opportunities that the medium has to offer. Here are some of the strategies that a developer can use:
Let's look at some digital marketing practices (in the Real Estate Industry) that will help achieve the above-mentioned goals.
Creating an online presence is the first, most important step, and serves as a backbone for all future digital marketing activities. To establish a powerful online presence, Real Estate developers need to focus on creating three things.
For Real Estate, a website can serve two purposes: a virtual office that showcases the builder's latest projects or a virtual marketplace for home seekers to explore purchasing options. To make either one or both of these purposes work well, there are numerous tools and optimisation techniques that need to be implemented.
Even the design of the website matters as it can make a difference to user experience and one such design that has been making waves amongst the real estate websites is a Flat Design. Flat website designs are categorised by their simple, elegant and square’ish’ look; first noticed in the Windows 8 Tile User Interface. With minimalistic animations and loads of white space, the Flat website design has proven to be effective in page speed loading times, readability, mobile optimisation and ease of navigation.
While a good website design is pleasing to the eyes, it only scratches the surface of what matters especially in the Real Estate sector. A stellar design needs to be accompanied by great content to create an impact. Writing good content that effectively communicates a Real Estate brand’s message and intrigues the user to go ahead for a purchase is vital. Presenting your target audience with engaging content is a sure-shot way to grab their attention and generate leads.
Real Estate is a very broad topic, so to fit everything into a single website, other strategies can be utilised to showcase everything a Real Estate developer has to offer.
Here is an example of pillar content we created for one of our leading real estate clients, Shriram Properties. The pillar page is currently ranking for a total of 1000 keywords out of which 150 keywords are ranking on page one.
When people need help or are looking for something, they do one of two things – seek out a person or a place or browse the internet. Blogging has come a long way from being a casual online tool for storytelling to an essential element of a digital marketing strategy.
Blogs are a long, short or creative source of information and if there is one thing Google loves, it is loads of valuable information. Research shows that websites with blogs have 434% more indexed pages. Google recognises and ranks these websites easily due to the information provided, ultimately leading to that site showing up on the first page of search results.
Considering how broad a topic Real Estate is, builders must take advantage of the power of blogging and focus on sharing information to potential home buyers. Blogs that give detailed information on upcoming properties, tips on home buying and guides on investment options are just some of the many topics a Real Estate blog can include.
The platform of Social Media offers brands a unique way to get more personal with their audience, and it is no different in the case of Real Estate.
There are numerous platforms for Social Media Marketing available today and some of the most useful ones for Real Estate developers include:
Having an online presence won't be fruitful if your potential customers are not aware of that presence. Real Estate developers depend heavily on lead generation, and digital marketing offers the quickest, easiest and most ROI friendly lead generation method. Here are some of the ways Real Estate developers can acquire customers via digital media.
Advertising online is one of the best ways to ensure you are reaching your potential target Group. If done right, it can be the best lead generation tool for real estate developers. Be it Facebook or Google or even other platforms such as Bing and Yahoo, using lead generation, website conversion ads or even interactive ads to engage with your target audience and collect leads.
As of July 2017, there are 241 million active users in India on Facebook. This is a primary reason why advertising on Facebook is something every builder needs to try. From website conversion ads to lead ads and carousel ads, builders should try a combination of videos and images to drive enquiries and site visits. Facebook also has detailed targeting by demographics, age and behaviour. Additionally, you can also target your website visitors and those you have engaged with your post so that the ad is displayed to a more specific and niche crowd making the probability of selling the property even higher than before.
Ads in regional languages have started rolling out, and marketers have begun incorporating this concept into their marketing strategies to reach out to their target audience. When a potential home buyer reads an ad in his regional language, he develops a bond of trust and comfort with the seller and is more likely to make a purchase, or at least recommend that product to a friend.
With Facebook’s Brand Reach and Frequency campaigns, brands can even get assured visibility and reach, similar to what a front-page newspaper ad gives.
Google AdWords is a paid digital marketing strategy that is run on the Google search engine. Adwords smart display campaigns run strongly through a set of rules and guidelines and work best when incorporated into SEO tools and strategies.
Let's say a home seeker is typing "flats in OMR" in the search box; if the digital marketer has incorporated the keywords "flats in OMR" along with some other relevant search queries, Google will pick up that ad and display it in the search results. The placement of the ad depends entirely on the budget set for the campaign. You can also optimise your AdWords campaign for profound results.
Google’s algorithms are ever changing and evolving to be more consumer-friendly, and 2017 has some cool new digital marketing trends that every marketer must keep close tabs on.
Drip emails are automated emails that are sent out based on a predefined time or user actions. Real Estate developers can target and constantly stay in touch with a group of people based on certain criteria retrieved from a strong email marketing database. Let's say that a customer has visited a property website and shown interest by subscribing to property newsletters. Digital marketers can use the information provided by the customer to send emails about the development and completion of the property and news on various other related properties.
Drip emails are a powerful lead nurturer, with statistics showing a 119% increase click-through rate via trustworthy emails.
Influencer marketing is the Internet's word-of-mouth marketing method and can prove very effective to generate leads for Real Estate Developers. Just like word-of-mouth, influencer marketing uses popular bloggers and other professionals in the Real Estate industry to promote a particular property. Influencer marketing channels include both blogs and social media channels, so Real estate developers must carefully choose the appropriate kind of influencer to market their properties.
Influencer.in provides a one-stop platform for Real Estate developers to search and connect with the best influencers in the country; they can choose from either working on long campaigns with a selected influencer or contacting multiple micro-influencers over various social media platforms to spread the word.
The age-old marketing rule of getting new customers while retaining existing customers applies in the digital space as well. Of course, the most popular tool for customer engagement today is social media, and Facebook ranks high up on the list, especially for the Real Estate industry. There are a plethora of social media trends benefiting the real estate industry. Here are some interesting ways developers can utilise Facebook and YouTube for customer engagement.
As of 2017, India had 450 million active internet users. While these numbers are set to increase over the next few years, what’s interesting to note is that by 2021, 9 out of 10 internet users will be Indian language users. These massive numbers indicate a much larger audience group for real estate developers to tap into. The easiest way to do this, is by employing multilingual marketing as part of their digital strategy. Take a look at our detailed video on why every Indian brand MUST have a Multilingual Digital Strategy and Vernacular Communication.
Be it ads, a landing page or even an entire website, when a potential customer sees content in his own native tongue, several things happen. You create brand awareness and increase brand recall, you build your customer’s trust in your product or brand and finally, you have a higher chance of converting potential leads. In the case of real estate companies, your buyer is likely to purchase a home or at the very least recommend your company to a friend.
Keeping the vernacular approach in mind, real estate companies can use vernacular content in their ads to reach their target audience using Facebook Marketing Solutions. One thing to remember is that you can’t stop with just your ads – your entire digital strategy must include an end-to-end multilingual marketing approach. You can read how regional ads resulted in a 70% drop in CPL for one of our biggest real estate clients.
The sales funnel of yore has been proclaimed as outdated by many. Today’s digital marketing funnel is a cocktail of strategies targeted at gathering better quality leads, converting them successfully and then nurturing your leads/customers so they keep coming back. Of course, the important aspect of lead generation is quality content. The various phases in a digital full-funnel marketing approach are Awareness, Consideration, Conversion and Retention. You can check out our detailed video of Full Funnel Marketing via digital for an in-depth explanation.
The reason the digital marketing funnel is so important for real estate companies is because back in the day, only the final level was considered important. Driving conversions was the only target real estate brands poured their resources into. However, that’s where the problem lies. Without your audience knowing who you are or the products and services you offer, your brand cannot expect to have a high conversion rate. It is therefore imperative that real estate companies include a solid full-funnel marketing approach in their digital strategies.
If a picture paints a thousand words imagine what a video could do. Videos have been around for decades and have taken the world by storm across industries – be it education, entertainment, information, etc. YouTube is currently the world’s second largest search engine with over 225 million monthly active users in India alone. Suffice to say that your real estate brand needs to have a comprehensive YouTube strategy to tape into this sizeable audience. It is important to note, however, that you don’t have to stop with just YouTube. Real estate brands will have to explore multiple video formats across social media channels like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc and create customised strategies for each. Today, interactive videos are currently an extremely popular trend due to the higher user engagement they deliver. You can also read our blog on tips to create compelling videos that convert.
One of our esteemed clients is a Chennai based Real Estate enterprise which laid its foundations in 2004. Known for providing niche residential segments like luxury villas and high-rise apartments, the company has since produced 68 projects, selling to over 4000 happy residents.
Our client wanted to scale up its digital presence through powerful digital marketing, focusing on five primary goals.
An intense digital marketing campaign followed, running on platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn and Google search, resulting in an impressive turnaround that showed:
Real estate is the most reliable and secure long-term investment you can make, and the ability to purchase a home will only get easier with newer technologies coming into the digital space, which is capable of giving you a real-time experience of any property right through a screen.
Yes, it's true. You cannot ignore the power of digital marketing, especially if you are a real estate developer. With potential homeowners using the Internet to research their future purchase, a strong and powerful digital marketing strategy is what will help real estate developers beat the competition. But with so much information available online, where do you start? We bring you a detailed and extensive guide to digital marketing for real estate to bring you one step closer to your marketing goals. Our guide covers:
As the saying goes – The only thing constant is change. Internet usage has evolved in India from being a mere medium to connect with friends to an expansive forum to grow your business and widen your reach. With the drop in the prices of smartphones and the introduction of affordable data plans by Reliance Jio, users from the tier 2 and tier 3 regions of the nation have joined the digital bandwagon and brands are leaving no stone unturned in targeting them.
However, when it comes to generating high-quality leads for your brand, just detailed targeting is not enough. Marketers need to find an emotional connect with the potential target audience to create a solid bond of trust and increase brand assurance. Keeping this in mind, we used multilingual advertising to help our real estate clients reach their target audience using Facebook marketing solutions. Keeping the vernacular approach in mind, we leveraged the reach and convenience of Facebook Form ads with the sole objective of lead generation. However, it was not just the ads that were vernacular, even the content in the forms was presented in a regional language to provide an end-to-end multilingual approach.
Casagrand is one of the top property developers in the country with a strong presence in the south. In an attempt to promote their recent project – Casagrand Smart Town – we used Facebook to advertise the project. Since the project is located in Thalambur, in the IT corridor of Chennai, we targeted both people working in the region and those who are looking for investing options in the area. The project is smartly priced at Rs 24 Lakhs, making it a great option for first time home buyers as well.
To begin with, we ran English ads on Facebook which resulted in a high CPL. Understanding the target audience is also Tamil speaking, we ran the same ads in Tamil as well. The regional ads generated 3x the number of leads and the CPL was almost 1/3rd. This resulted in almost a 9x better engagement with the same investment. This only proves that targeting your audience with a multilingual ad strategy helps both the consumers and the marketers.
L&T is a household name in our nation, known for top-notch residential and commercial developments that are landmarks of their own. L&T Praganya Eden Park is an integrated township located in Siruseri, with spectacular 3BHK apartments packed with new-age amenities and facilities. Again, since Siruseri is a hot destination for both IT professionals who travel to the locality every day for work and real estate investors looking for burgeoning areas to buy a home in, we targeted both the groups on Facebook through Tamil ads.
The campaign resulted in over 25% reduction of CPL with the average CPL of the campaign being 15% lesser than average CPLs in this micro market. Additionally, it generated multiple leads with 3 site visits.
Nisarg Greens located in Ambernath East, Mumbai, is one of the most coveted gated communities of the region with 1, 2 and 3 BHK apartments built in a luxurious plot of 25 acres. This property was promoted in Marathi to connect with the local audience and generate high-quality leads instantly. The price point of this project is attractive, making it a great buy for young families and those who have just started working. Consumers were targeted with an end-to-end multilingual marketing approach with both the lead forms and the ads being presented in Marathi. The campaign resulted in a 20% increase in qualified leads, out of which a whopping 15% contributed to walk-ins, and one successful booking!
Lancor Lumina 2020 is a newly launched community enclave offering premium lifestyle 2 and 3 BHK apartments in the fast-appreciating locality of Guduvanchery. The project was promoted on Facebook in both English and Tamil ads. The English ads and Tamil ads were run one after the other and resulted in 64% drop in CPL and 75% more number of leads.
This case study is an important example of the power of social media marketing and multilingual advertising. However, it is vital to understand that multilingual marketing is not just about translation. It is about creating an end-to-end marketing strategy in the language your target audience is comfortable in. This is exactly what we offer at 22 Languages.
With higher sales numbers and lower cost per lead, Digital Marketing Has Transformed The Real Estate Industry. Don’t forget to check out our Comprehensive Guide For Digital Marketing For Real Estate for a more in-depth analysis.
At Social Beat, being imaginative and innovative is part of our DNA. We work hard to reach our client’s goals and exceed their expectations. So it’s always a wonderful feeling when accolades come our way! The recently concluded Big Bang Awards 2018 by The Advertising Club, Bangalore was a celebration of India’s digital advertising talent.
Social Beat won Silver for the Digital Award in the Real Estate Category. We were recognised for our stellar work for Brigade Group – the leading player in India’s real estate industry.
Awards like this prove why real estate brands need to shift from print to digital.
Established in 1986, the Brigade Group has a pan-India presence with a diverse portfolio that covers both commercial and residential properties. Apart from property development, Brigade’s repertoire also includes property management services, hospitality and education.
Brigade approached us with a simple objective - build user-generated content and create a buzz around Brigade’s social media handles. Keeping this in mind, we came up with a photo contest idea. While the campaign was centred on audience interaction, it reaped a two-fold benefit – the pictures sent in would promote Brigade and thus increase visibility, as well as encourage people to follow the company across social media platforms.
One of Brigade’s top priorities before the start of any campaign is to be as unique as possible, and the Photo Contest campaign did just that. Brigade’s audience was able to actively engage with them. Each participant had to send a maximum of 5 images, of which at least two had to feature Brigade properties. Participants also needed to add specified hashtags to their posts and follow them on social media platforms. This helped Brigade gain visibility and increased their social media followers.
To help spread word about the campaign, we created a small video that held all the details. The results achieved were staggering. In fact, this campaign also won Silver for the Best Social Media Brands under the Real Estate category at Social Samosa’s digital marketing awards.
There were over 15,000 views and engagement of more than 30,000 people, with more than 3000 clicks.
We received over 500 entries in response to the campaign. The majority of our audience was between the ages of 18 to 24.
This one-of-a-kind approach to creating engaging real estate marketing strategies is what sets Brigade apart from their competitors.
This award is further proof of Social Beat’s commitment to pushing the boundaries and delivering only the best in digital marketing for our clients.
You can also read our Complete Guide To Digital Marketing For Real Estate for more insights.
Our creative, quirky campaigns have always won the hearts of our clients, but when they win awards too, it’s always an added perk! The 2018 edition of Social Samosa’s much-anticipated digital marketing awards was held on July 31 and included 19 categories with 14 special categories.
Social Beat has won two Silver awards for the Best Social Media Brands under the Real Estate category. This was in recognition of our exceptional work with Brigade Group and Casagrand, two of the largest real estate developers in South India. These awards are further proof of why real estate brands need to shift from print to digital.
Casagrand is one of the most reputed developers in South India, with a 14 year legacy behind them. Established in 2004, Casagrand has developed over 12 million sq.ft. of premium residential real estate across Chennai, Bengaluru and Coimbatore. Their core values of innovation and quality have translated into their engaging real estate marketing strategies.
Some of their best-performing social media campaigns were able to tap into the variety of emotions that make a house a home.
The #FeelAtHome campaign by Casagrand was a creative representation of the small things that make our homes special. This campaign featured day-to-day things most of us do, but often take for granted. Each post was crafted along the lines of the philosophy that it’s emotions that go into making a home and not just four walls and a ceiling.
This post, for example, depicted a colourful rangoli, a staple at the doorway of almost every South Indian household. It performed very well on social media as a large part of the audience were able to relate to it on a personal level. The familiar feeling of waking up in the morning to the sight of rangoli being drawn at the entrance of the house is something most had grown up with.
One of the factors contributing to Casagrand’s win was their willingness to experiment with new formats and push the boundaries. During the Wimbledon season, we created a 3D post for Casagrand, which also acted as a quiz for the audience. It featured a tennis ball and users could move the 3D image around to check which side of the court it was on. The post was also able to creatively plug in a mention of Casagrand’s amenities in a non-intrusive way.
The Brigade Group, first established in 1986, is focused on property development. Apart from residential properties, Brigade has a multi-domain portfolio covering commercial property development, property management, hospitality and education. The same attention to detail and drive for excellence that sets their projects apart also drives their social media marketing strategy.
One of Brigade’s key differentiators is their unique way of showcasing new project launches. For Brigade, we have looked past the usual promotional posts and instead, depicted new projects in a way that captures their true essence.
For the Brigade Woods launch, we structured the entire campaign around the abundance of greenery that was the biggest USP of the project. These watercolour-style posts depicted the joy that comes with owning a house in the midst of lush green spaces.
Brigade’s social media approach also involves using creative ways for their audience to actively engage with them. One of the best-performing contests by Brigade is a photo contest. Each participant had to send a maximum of 5 images, of which at least two had to feature Brigade properties. Participants also needed to add specified hashtags to their posts and follow them on social media platforms. This helped Brigade gain visibility and increased their social media followers.
These awards are further proof of Social Beat’s commitment to pushing the boundaries and delivering only the best in digital marketing for our clients.
You can also read our Complete Guide to Digital Marketing for Real Estate for more insights.
Mahindra Lifespaces is one among India’s most reputed real estate developers and a pioneer in sustainable urbanisation in a number of cities across India. A part of the Mahindra Group conglomerate, Mahindra Lifespace’s residential footprint spans 23 million sq.ft. of completed, on-going and forthcoming projects.
We are delighted to announce that Facebook has recently published a case study on Mahindra Lifespsaces’ breakthrough success using Facebook marketing solutions. The article stands testimony to the power of social media and how brands must leverage it in today’s digital landscape.
Between December 2016 and December 2017, Mahindra Lifespaces achieved:
Mahindra Lifespaces approached us with the intention of generating quality leads that would subsequently transform into sales for their various properties across North and South India. To achieve this, we came up with a comprehensive campaign that would follow customers right from brand awareness, through the consideration phase and finally making a purchase. We focussed on building a strong brand presence for Mahindra Lifespaces to attract and nurture leads.
To help our client achieve their goals, we focused on pushing top-of-mind awareness to generate high-converting leads for their various projects. To create this awareness, the first thing we did was use video ads, particularly walkthrough videos to show what was unique about a particular project. As video is one of the key trends in social media, we also experimented with a special Mother’s Day video that resonated with our clients’ audience and helped stand out from other real estate players.
Another idea we implemented was incorporating movement in all our ads – we used still images to create slideshow ads and carousel ads to showcase the interior of several projects, within a single ad unit. Lead ads complemented this initiative – it became easier for people to submit their details for more information and this resulted in better quality leads.
To appropriately and effectively target Mahindra Lifespaces audience, we built Custom Audiences of people who engaged with our clients’ Facebook Page, website, landing pages and those who opened lead forms but did not complete and submit them. Additionally, the real estate developer also created lookalike audiences based on everyone who completed the lead forms and engaged with the video ads.
Mahindra Lifespaces also used Facebook’s automatic placement option so that the ads would appear across the Facebook family of apps.
Thus, by building a vigorous campaign of video ads to raise awareness, and using Facebook’s marketing solutions, Mahindra Lifespaces was able to generate quality leads and boost conversions.
Click here to read the full case study. Do also check out our digital marketing guide for the real estate industry.
A recent study by Nielsen and BCG revealed that India has a $100 billion opportunity for brands as the amount of time consumers spend on mobile and the number of digital transactions conducted increases. As 81% of users research their options on a mobile phone before actually making a purchase, reaching them through mobile platforms is becoming increasingly important. This is why, for digital marketers, in-app marketing has become one of the most important channels to drive customer awareness and generate leads.
Mahindra Lifespaces took advantage of this trend in their lead generation strategy. The phenomenal results they achieved proved that a mobile-centric approach might be the future of advertising for brands.
Mahindra Lifespaces is one of India’s leading real estate developers with multiple projects spread across the country. They are the pioneer in developing environmentally sustainable projects and deliver premium living spaces to their customers. To match the company’s novel approach, they also needed an innovative digital advertising strategy to help them stay ahead of competing brands and expand their customer base.
For this campaign, the objective was to leverage in-app ads to drive more leads for Mahindra Lifespaces at a significantly lower cost per lead as compared to other targeting strategies previously used.
For the Mahindra Windchimes project in Bengaluru, we made extensive use of in-app ads to tap into a huge potential consumer base. In-app ads are placed strategically within selected apps, so customers are exposed to it while spending time on the app. With consumers today spending more time on essential mobile apps, reaching them through this medium has proved to be one of the most effective strategies. In-app marketing will also prove to be one of the biggest ways digital marketing will transform the real estate sector.
To do this, we implemented a three-step approach to developing an effective in-app marketing strategy.
The demographic targeted for this campaign was the 35+ age group as this would be the segment who were advancing their careers and looking to buy a home. All marital statuses and both genders were also targeted, however, males performed better.
After setting the target audience, we then needed to research into what kind of apps this segment would be most active on. Based on their interests, we targeted apps that belonged to the following categories:
These apps would be the most effective ways to maximise reach among our target audience.
As in-app advertising is a largely visual medium, the display creatives used needed to be catchy, informative and entice customers to visit the page. A mix of high-performing standard display creatives was successfully used to capture the target audience’s attention.
With this advanced targeting strategy, we were able to generate unprecedented results for Mahindra Lifespaces. Utilising in-app ads helped us not only generate more leads but also led to higher conversion rates. These ads helped us accomplish two major outcomes:
In a nutshell, in-app advertising helped us gain higher conversions at a lower cost. This proves just how effective platform apps can be for brands looking to boost their lead generation and conversion strategy.
With the Digital Marketing Industry Report 2018 stating that 40% of brands are looking for lead generation through digital marketing, implementing in-app ads could be one of the most important methods for them to achieve this goal. The faster brands adapt to this advertising strategy, the better equipped they will be to reach larger customer bases.
In this age of new media marketing, digital marketing has proved to be a game-changer. While any proponent of an effective marketing mix model would suggest a healthy mix of conventional as well as unconventional modes, digital media certainly leads by a margin when you bring the ROI perspective into play for real estate industry. The advent of digital media has paved way for a marketing approach that now wants to track penny-to-penny spend on each marketing effort and the returns derived from it.
Digital marketing is predominantly being used by every firm out there and is proving to be an extremely successful means of spreading awareness and creating a brand value. The same is true for the real estate businesses.
The biggest challenge for real estate companies is that in this highly competitive space, the brands are looking forward to boosting their digital presence and generating leads. In order to enable the real estate companies to establish a digital identity and leverage upon it, they need foolproof innovative digital marketing strategies with lead generation at the centre-stage.
There are a couple of things to be kept in mind while designing a website and implementing digital marketing strategies for real estate companies. First and foremost, it is the website that needs attention. The purpose of the website could vary from capturing leads to brand-building. A website must be user-friendly and must ensure “call-to-action”. Great content always helps in increasing visibility on the digital platform.
On social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google Plus, what matters is how creative your contents or posts are. The frequency is not an issue as long as your posts are able to garner enough audience engagement. Real estate companies need to project their unique strengths in the most creative manner possible on the digital space. A lot of online tools and applications are available nowadays that help in automated updates on the social media sites.
Social media follows SEO (Search engine optimization). Earlier, the pre-conceived notion was that just having a website is enough. But actually just having a website takes us nowhere. Search engine optimization and search engine marketing play a key role in the integrated approach towards getting traffic on the website and generating leads. SEO results give an imperative method of ranking on the digital space and the higher the company is ranked, the better chances of gaining leads from their websites.
While SEO is usually only associated with Google search, brands should not ignore YouTube, the second largest search engine in the world. For tips on how to rank your videos, read our in-depth article: YouTube SEO Tips: The Secret Sauce to Ranking Your Videos in 2019.
Traditionally, the real estate companies invest highly in print ads, but the returns they get on their investments is comparatively lower when compared to the Google ads. Our research in the space throws up a couple of interesting facts. The research results clearly show that on investing the same amount of money in digital marketing and the print media, the real estate companies are able to realize results which are at approximately 2.5 times better. The detailed statistics are as shown below in the table:
A 1/4thpage advertisement in a newspaper costs about Rs. 7 lakhs, which is bound to target one million or more audience. However, the conversion rate is surprisingly low. One print ad worth Rs. 7 lakhs results in about 400 website visits, out of which about 130 leads are generated. In the end, the company gets only 3 to 4 buyers for the properties at an average. In comparison, Google ads, with the similar investment of Rs. 7 lakhs results in about 400 leads which convert into more than 10 buyers.
If pictures speak a thousand words, it is safe to say that videos speak a million. Videos are the new bannermen of content marketing and advertising on video platforms like YouTube can be a tipping point for your brand. You can tailor-make your video campaigns for YouTube by displaying your ad when a potential home-buyer performs a search with relevant keywords. This will help you reach out to a hand-picked audience that is genuinely interested in buying a property – a feature which is still foreign in traditional modes of advertising like television, radio and print.
According to YouTube Brandcast 2018, seven out of ten viewers watch ads on YouTube with the sound on. This only proves that apart from detailed targeting, YouTube ads offer a plethora of other benefits, pushing brands to switch to YouTube ads from traditional media. Few of the key advantages are discussed below:
You can easily link the video ads to your AdWords account and track the results of your campaign. From the number of views generated and the reach of the ad to the amount of engagement caused, you can track every level of the marketing funnel and make most of your allocated budgets.
Unlike traditional media, YouTube ads give you the power to pick your audience for higher conversion rates. You can create a customised target group based on a wide range of factors like the demographics, interests, content consumption behaviour and the keywords used to search, to name a few.
There are numerous YouTube ad formats to choose from, based on where you want your ad to be displayed, how long your ad is and the objective of your campaign. For instance, TrueView ads are the ads that play before a particular YouTube video. You can opt for skippable ads that can be up to 6 minutes in length or non-skippable ads that have a limit of 20 seconds.
The other common type of ads is the bumper ad which plays before the YouTube video but are only 6 seconds long. These ads are great to showcase the launch of a new property or an irresistible offer. Featured below is the bumper ad created for Asta Properties for the launch of their premium project – Asta AVM.
The best aspect of Youtube ads is the cost-effective approach they provide. A TV ad, during the main time slot, costs around Rs. 2000 per second, with no targeting options or tracking benefits. The same ad played in the form of a bumper ad on YouTube will cost just Rs. 1.20 for 1000 impressions. To add to that, you can also retarget the people who have viewed your ad or visited your website for a higher rate of conversion.
Advertising your property through regional content is a great way to break into the tier 2 and tier 3 cities of the nation and engage with the next billion Internet users in India. The free data plans launched by Reliance Jio and the drop in the prices of smartphones have sparked the growth of regional content in the nation. It is time real estate developers took this to their advantage and re-designed their campaigns in vernacular languages to widen their reach.
Casagrand – one of the leading real estate developers in Chennai – leveraged the reach of regional ads to showcase their new project. The ad helped in increasing brand awareness and generating high-quality leads, creating a win-win situation for the developer.
Most of the real estate companies currently, do not have a commendable social media presence but it’s never too late. There is immense potential in the digital media to leverage for the real estate companies. The efficiency & optimization control should be at the forefront of any decision by an organization. And when that decision has the potential to catapult the number of leads by 250%, then there is no reason why the real estate companies should not go digital.
If you have feedback or any comments, feel free to reply to this blog post. You can also read our complete guide for digital marketing for real estate.