The implementation and tools to conduct marketing have all changed drastically in the last few years, and industries across the board are scrambling to keep a firm grasp on their marketing efforts in order to stay afloat. Just last year, research found that 78% of marketers use more than five digital tools to plan, manage and execute their marketing campaigns. Why is this significant? It reveals an earnest attempt to bridge the gaps that many digital marketers face in their processes. According to a HubSpot survey, the biggest challenge marketers face is generating leads and traffic, followed by providing ROI for marketing activities.
It’s no wonder then that more C-suite leaders, including those in real estate, are looking into ways to build and enhance business marketing operations from the ground up. A study showed that marketing operations influence over 75% of all business leads in most companies, while another survey revealed that almost half of all of its respondents didn’t even know what marketing operations meant. Why? The role of marketing operations as it is becoming familiar today simply didn’t exist a few years ago.
What is marketing operations?
Although still relatively a new function in marketing vocabulary, it encompasses many desired business outcomes by efficiently using technology, data, processes, and people. Marketing has long been closely associated with its strategic and creative thinking requirements, for which copy writers, graphic designers and advertising specialists are indispensable as they cover the human, aspirational and psychological aspects of consumer behavior, (this is especially true in real estate). But marketing today thrives on advancements in tech and the ever-growing ability to track key metrics, and businesses are becoming more and more comfortable adopting the use of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) technology to make their processes trackable, measurable and optimized.
The key lies in being able to build and sustain an overall marketing strategy that covers all the different processes the company undertakes from a martech (marketing technology) point of view- including all marketing programs, campaigns, and strategic planning activities, while maintaining the company’s holistic approach when it comes to measuring performance, hitting sales targets, keeping budgets in line, reporting and data analytics.
Marketing Operations for Real Estate
Sirius Decisions found that B2Bs with tightly aligned sales and marketing operations achieve 24% faster three-year revenue growth and 27% faster three-year profit growth. To that end, marketing operations will require the alignment of all business functions:
The goal is to optimize internal experiences for agents in their processes so there are better experiences externally, i.e. for clients. Marketing operations can help in setting up processes that fit all kinds of customer profiles and whatever homebuying/selling stage they are at, from acquisition to cross-sell to retention. It allows agents to truly get to the heart of customers’ needs with the help of automated tools and data-driven insights.
It is important for every stage of business operation to be managed and monitored, and marketing operations can often unveil dramatic results. Brokerages will benefit from having a wholly transparent bird’s eye view of end-t0-end marketing and sales processes so that they can quickly adapt to new or changing markets, as well as be quicker to assess and diagnose flaws or unoptimized areas in any process at any given time.
Even without having a working marketing operations system or team in place, most agencies already have some form of marketing strategy or department. However, marketing operations require ample goal setting targets for teams and the company as a whole to align themselves towards the same vision and achievements. This way, brokerages and their agents are better equipped with the right tools and waterfall processes, to delegate the appropriate tasks and operate as a single unit and close more revenue opportunities. It’s an important, all-encompassing way of making sure all technologies and owned platforms are working hard to make sure high-performing strategic assets are helping the company and agents hit specific business objectives.
KPIs and metrics:
Marketing operations empower brokerages with the additional opportunity to utilize historical (accurate) data and metrics to analyze business decisions and make better informed decisions regarding future growth. Such KPIs and metrics cover a huge range of marketing activities, from content creation and distribution to demand generation to performance, but collecting and analyzing that data gives brokerages a leg up on the competition, because it ensures better customer journey, insight on which marketing efforts need more investment and boosting, increased conversions and an ability to drive exponential growth.
No matter the size of a brokerage or real estate company, the property sector is one of the many industries that can and is starting to glean huge benefits from putting marketing operation teams in place. Brokerages that have a marketing strategy going and are in the process of scaling business will find it makes a lot of sense to start aligning their marketing and sales technology tools together to an even greater degree, because marketing operations handle so much more than just the marketing side of business.