Real Estate Marketing Plans: Most Effective Marketing of 2011

Reblogger Joan Whitebook
Real Estate Agent with BHG The Masiello Group

As we plan for our marketing in 2012, it is interesting to note the results of the Active Rain survey.  I found some big surprises here.  In particular, I was surprised at the popularity of direct mail and open houses.  Let me know what you think!  Good luck with your 2012 plan.

Original content by ActiveRain Real Estate Network

Real Estate Marketing Plans


Do you have your real estate marketing plans for 2012 ready?


Real Estate Marketing Plans


With SO MANY alternatives for real estate marketing plans, are you confused on what to do in 2012?

So as you develop your 2012 real estate marketing plans, here is some great food for thought:

ActiveRain, the largest blogging platform and professional social network in real estate, conducted a survey of 1,910 real estate professionals asking the simple question of "what is the most effective real estate marketing or advertising that you do?" 

The results:

  1. Referrals (including word of mouth and sphere of influence) were overwhelming the most preferred marketing with 26% of responses.
  2. Blogging was #2 with 13% of responses.  (Keep in mind that the survey was conducted on ActiveRain, so these results may naturally be skewed to blogging).
  3. Direct Mail continues to be incredibly popular.  Direct Mail includes post cards, mailers, and newsletters.  Direct Mail also received 13% of responses.
  4. Internet Marketing as a general category received 12% of responses.  Our assumption is that Internet marketing is generally speaking pay per click marketing on Google, Yahoo or Bing or lead generation from a number of different sources.
  5. Networking Networking includes partner referrals and face-to-face meetings. Face-to-face networking received 8% of the responses.

 Most Effective Real Estate Marketing Plans

 (Share these stats - link to this article:

 As you can see based on 2011 real estate marketing plans, real estate professionals continue to favor more traditional offline, "tried & true" hand to hand real estate marketing techniques.  Though the general bucket of Internet marketing & blogging are equivalent to direct mail, the top marketing techniques tend to be more offline - referrals, direct mail, networking, working with past clients, open houses, door knocking and cold calling.   Hard to know if ActiveRain is the same as blogging and if Zillow or Google are the same as Internet marketing, but interesting to see that from a response perspective, that Open Houses are more popular than any one web site AND Door Knocking is more preferred than CraigsList and FaceBook.


 Offline Real Estate Marketing Plans

When real estate professionals were asked, "What is the most effective real estate marketing or advertising that you do?" only a small number of real estate web sites were mentioned in reasonable frequency: ActiveRain, CraigsList, FaceBook, Zillow and Google.  Of course, blogging and Internet marketing are large categories with a lot of different companies.  But there were very few mentions of Wordpress or other ways to market online.  Noticeably absent were Trulia and   Though we believe ActiveRain is a very powerful blogging platform, fans of ActiveRain are likely over-represented in the survey.  Kudos to Zillow to have name recognition equivalent to Google in the real estate industry.


Most Effective Real Estate Web Sites

For 2012, here are the key questions to ask:

  1. How important is developing your REFERRAL BASE?  How are you going to do it?
  2. Are Blogging and SEO part of your 2012?  If so, what to do - ActiveRain, Wordpress, Blogger, or other?
  3. Direct Mail continues to be an important part of the real estate professional's marketing mix.  It is amazing, but true.  Direct Mail allow neighborhood targeting unlike online marketing.  What kinds of direct mail campaigns will you be using?
  4. Internet Marketing needs to be part of your 2012 marketing mix, but there are a lot of options from pay-per-click advertising to lead generation to Zillow, Trulia and 

ActiveRain is great place to start the learning process to figure out the best Internet marketing strategies to achieve your personal and financial goals in 2012! 

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William Johnson
RE/MAX Associates - La Jolla, CA
San Diego Real Estate Voice, GRI CRS e-Pro CDPE

Hi Joan, This is wonderful post to re-blog. I thought the findings were interesting. I still believe strongly in direct mail. 

Dec 12, 2011 02:07 PM #1
Chuck Beaumont
Royal Lepage Binder Real Estate - Windsor, ON
Going The Extra Mile...

Referrals...the easy way to work. Happy Holidays to you.

Dec 12, 2011 02:15 PM #2
Joan Whitebook
BHG The Masiello Group - Nashua, NH
Consumer Focused Real Estate Services

William ~  I don't reblog often, but I found these survey results very interesting.  I still use a lot of direct mail and have had great success ... Referrals still are #1 for me.  Hope you have a successful 2012.

Chuck ~  I'm with you.  With referrals, the person referring has already convinced the prospect of your worth!  It is the most enjoyable way to work.


Dec 12, 2011 02:25 PM #3
Ken Brandon
Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage (Jacksonville, NC) - Jacksonville, NC
Camp Lejeune, Jacksonville, NC

Thank you for re-blogging this. I did not see it the first time around and there is some very interesting information provided.

Dec 12, 2011 02:40 PM #4
Jim Frimmer
HomeSmart Realty West - San Diego, CA
Realtor & CDPE, Mission Valley specialist

No surprises in any of that as far as I'm concerned. ActiveRain and direct mail are my go-to guys.

Dec 12, 2011 03:03 PM #5
Kate Elim
Dockside Realty - Spotsylvania, VA
Realtor 540-226-1964, Selling Homes & Land a

Hi Joan...I found this interesting too.  I never door knock and I don't do open houses.  The open houses don't work here because we are so rural.  Door knocking has never appealed to me and I really don't want someone knocking on my door with marketing material.  I'd rather they sent it to me and even then I prefer to get referrals from friends if I'm looking for someone.


Dec 12, 2011 04:26 PM #6
Mary Lockman
Windermere Real Estate Methow Valley - Winthrop, WA
Methow Valley Real Estate

Joan Whitebook is not only top shelf 
REALTOR to buyers and sellers of real estate in  Southern New Hampshire and Nausha New Hampshire but she is also a mentor to her fellow REALTORS across the nation.  Can you afford not to contact Joan Whitebook for all your real estate in Southern New Hampshire including Nausha.

Dec 19, 2011 07:39 AM #7
Joan Whitebook
BHG The Masiello Group - Nashua, NH
Consumer Focused Real Estate Services

Ken ~  This survey is very interesting and I think we all can modify these results for our markets and out goals.

Jim ~  I'm with you on this.  Direct mail is great - especially when you add a personal message or something of added value.

Kate ~ Referrals are #1 in my book.  I haven't done any door knocking.  Open houses are mixed.. even if folks show up, they usually are already working with an agent.

Mary ~  Thanks so much for your kinds words.  I appreciate your endorsement and confidence in me.

Dec 20, 2011 12:50 AM #8
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Consumer Focused Real Estate Services
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