For real estate professionals, texting (SMS) is the best way to communicate with homebuyers. In fact, a whopping 90% of agents prefer to communicate through text message.
Homebuyers choose their real estate agents because of their impressive records and their unique personalities, making texting, which is faster than a call yet just as personal, the ideal means of communication. The speed of real estate SMS marketing is especially helpful in the current fast-paced housing market, where homebuyers and real estate agents are working to purchase the perfect home before it gets snatched up by someone else.
However, it can be difficult to feel comfortable navigating the world of text marketing for real estate agents. Read on to learn how to keep your texts professional—yet personable—from initial property showings until closing day.
Text Messaging Tip #1: Use Texts For Short, Mundane Conversations
Real estate texting services work well for timely information exchanges, such as determining a showing time and place or confirming the due date for paperwork. They are also great for short updates, such as sending a new listing or letting a client know that your car blew a tire on the way to a showing.
Share negative news, like a rejected offer, over the phone so that your homebuyer cannot possibly misinterpret your sincere apologies and can immediately start working with you to find a solution.
Additionally, you’ll want to avoid texting anything confidential, proprietary, or private to your clients. Texts can be forwarded and recorded, so be sure to relay sensitive information over the phone.
Text Messaging Tip #2: Be Courteous
Even though your client should have already agreed to receive real estate SMS messages as per TCPA regulations, your first few texts should always include your name. This establishes your professionalism and reminds your homebuyer who they are communicating with at the same time.
Even if you provide a consistent real estate texting service and have established friendly relations with your homebuyer, don’t make assumptions. For example:
- A homebuyer who has given you permission to text hasn’t given you permission to speak over the phone. Ask before you make a call.
- Before you add anyone to a reply or create a group conversation, ensure that works for your homebuyer. He or she may feel comfortable texting only you.
- Just because you are happy to receive text messages from seven in the morning to ten at night, doesn’t mean your homebuyer is. Keep all communications to traditional business hours unless he or she has given you express permission otherwise.
Constant consideration of your homebuyer’s preferences is key to maintaining a professional relationship.
Text Messaging Tip #3: Stay Positive
As you are probably well aware, it can be difficult to determine the exact tone of a text. In fact, text meanings are often misconstrued by recipients. This is bad enough when your friend interprets a message the wrong way, but can be disastrous when a client does.
To avoid miscommunications and promote a positive tone when providing your real estate texting service, you should:
- Avoid one-word responses.
- Always include a greeting, like “Hi, [name]!” in an initial text.
- Include punctuation, especially exclamation points.
- Insert positive emojis (or GIFs if you feel comfortable) in delicate conversations.
- Use polite phrases, like “my pleasure,” and “thank you.”
These tactics should ensure that your texts are viewed as positive, but it is best if you use the phone to relay any information that is not neutral or positive in nature, like a rejected offer or missed opportunity.
Text Messaging Tip #4: Always Provide Value
Ninety-eight percent of texts are opened. This statistic can be tempting—after all, what’s stopping you from asking your clients to promote your services to a friend while you are working together?
However, the key to text marketing for real estate agents is establishing trust with your homebuyer. If you want them to keep opening and replying to your messages, ensure each text is distinctly valuable. Include information related only to the project you are working on. Market updates, showing scheduling, and quick notifications are almost always acceptable.
Of course, once a deal is closed, you may reach out for performance feedback and let your client know about additional services you offer. But while you are working on a specific project with your homebuyer, stick to pertinent discussions.
Text Messaging Tip #5: Double-Check Everything Before Sending
When we say double-check everything, we mean everything. You can’t take back anything you text, so you’ll need to perfect your real estate text messages the first time around.
Before you send an SMS message, ensure that:
- your message sounds positive.
- you are not texting anything that should be relayed in a call.
- dates and times are accurate.
- words are spelled correctly and sentences are grammatically sound.
For real estate professionals who are sending many messages, it may be useful to create templates (available in some business text messaging platforms) to expedite the process and ensure you are sending error-free and on-brand messages.
Interested in learning more business text messaging best practices? Check out our blog.