The Rise of Marketing Operations in Real Estate
Today, 60% of large tech companies say they have a designated marketing operations role in place, and more B2Bs are looking into creating entire marketing operations teams as well. It means more and more companies are realizing the need for greater structure and discipline when it comes to the increasingly digital (and varied) processes that fall under the ‘marketing’ umbrella. Real estate itself as an industry is in the throes of a digital revolution, with agents and brokerages realizing that continued success lies in being able to operate fluently between marketing platforms and emerging technologies in unprecedented ways, not only efficiently but to scale as well.
Success can look different from business to business, and the same is true for real estate firms.
What marketing operations allow for is space, creativity and technical prowess to hit long-term and big-picture business goals that all team members can work towards together.
Successful marketing operations will
Help identify gaps in personas & journeys
Marketing ops can help agents find out what information is still lacking about their customers, or even better, help them realize they don’t yet have the right information about their target audience. Not having an automated process that collects the right information about intended customers indicates a fundamental flaw in the overall marketing infrastructure, keeping agents from understanding what stage a prospect is in, where they fall in the customer personas, and which materials and messages they should be sending at what times. Successful marketing operations ensure that customer journeys are based on insights gleaned from integrated phases and functions of all digital channels.
Identify opportunities from data for better campaign and lead management
Although real estate is already a data-heavy industry, much of that data has been withheld in traditional silos. With the digital revolution comes a wave of change with data being now available in multiple formats - too much, in fact. Marketing operations enable that data to be harnessed with powerful digital technologies whose processes are constantly being improved upon, leading to more transparent collaboration and management between teams and the information they possess, ultimately resulting in smoother transitions between strategy and execution. This is important because new opportunities arising from existing and incoming data enable overall brand messaging and campaign themes that are more aligned and timed well. A key component of marketing operations is checking analytics and dashboards to make sure each channel is supercharged in overall performance and bringing something that adds to the table.
Elevate customer engagement and marketing strategy
Many real estate firms realize that bolstering their business model with marketing operations is a necessary step towards the future, but it’s still murky waters for marketers across many industries: one survey discovered that over 80% of marketing professionals do not have a formal content strategy or formal distribution process, despite having sufficient budgets allocated towards content. Companies where their marketing operations strategy included a robust content strategy outlined early on resulted in transparency, cut time on content generation, lowered costs, and increased content impact on customer engagement - with results of up to 20% improvement in customer-engagement metrics.
Help assess and report results using digital solutions
Having a data-first approach towards marketing advances the whole organization, not just the marketing or sales aspect. It’s important that agencies and agents choose the best-fit marketing technologies (MarTech) that address the pain-points of their business goals, and continually evaluate the efficiency and performance of these technologies. Surprisingly, only 9% of marketers have a fully utilized tech stack, which speaks to the importance of training and evaluation and asking many, many questions. For example, is data flowing smoothly along the tech stack or is there an identifiable bottleneck somewhere? The marriage between fast-performing tech and an influx of data, when managed right, can help improve governance, help set benchmarking and improve campaign implementation.
Helps coordinate a systemic, sustainable plan that is repeatable and scalable
This can encapsulate a whole wide array of processes: establishing and scaling marketing campaigns, optimization and analysis of data, data audit and cleansing, training agents on new platforms and solutions being implemented, reporting back on metrics and KPI results to upper management, budget management, etc. Real estate businesses will differ in their approach and stage of marketing operations setup. Some larger firms will have an entire in-house team able to work with faster turnaround and an in-depth understanding of brand ethos; others will choose a hybrid model that allows teams and agents to work closely alongside platforms or marketing operations solution providers.
Whatever the approach, marketing operations can help businesses improve their marketing effectiveness by 15-25%, according to a McKinsey report, including increased ROI, revenue and opportunities for more data-backed decision making at every level. The point of marketing operations is that it involves a wide range of operations that must be aligned and flow together, with an added emphasis on processes that are repeatable and workflows that are scalable. At the end of the day, marketing operations as a well-oiled machine allows marketing to play its pivotal role: creating true value for customers and ensuring future business growth.