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How WeWork, Keller Williams, and Zillow create innovative marketing (and how you can, too)

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wework london office-320x222What separates a Facebook post with just a handful of likes from content that has everyone in the industry talking?

While the power of your brand and the depth of your outreach are big factors, everyone from veteran industry professionals to junior brokers can tap into the marketing strategies that position content to go viral. That’s increasingly true in today’s digital environment, where over 4 million blog posts are published daily, 500 million tweets are sent, and 5 billion Google searches are made everyday.

With that kind of volume, it isn’t a given that anyone’s marketing efforts will cut through the noise. And while there is no surefire way to ensure your next Facebook post or live video really gets people engaged, there are clear strategies you can use to elevate your marketing game.

We take a look at three companies to see how they’re expanding their reach with innovative marketing, and provide three key takeaways.

1. Be interesting and original.

For commercial real estate professionals, marketing is largely about showcasing your listings and deals, finding prospects, and building your market presence. So while most of your marketing content may be aiming to inform, don’t assume that means it’s acceptable to be boring!

Any successful marketing strategy needs to engage with people and their interests, so take steps to ensure your marketing strategies are legitimately interesting. One way to do this is by creating a diversity of content.

WeWork is a strong example of this — simply scroll through their LinkedIn and you’ll see everything from beautiful pictures of their new London office to a video introducing the world’s first window cleaning robot.

While no broker should expect to be able to match a giant like WeWork’s marketing capabilities, there’s no harm in learning from the best. To get started, focus on creating a variety of original content. Incorporate videos, visuals, live streams, and blog posts into your marketing arsenal. If nothing else, your diversity of content will help you stand out amid a sea of the usual tweets and lackluster email marketing campaigns.


2. Use multiple channels

If diversity is key for content, it’s just as critical when it comes to channels. After all, the more places you put something, the more people are going to see and interact with it.

Start with the most popular channels, like social media hotspots Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram. These are powerful places to focus your marketing efforts since everyone is using them and you can post content for free. Also consider using marketing tools like MailChimp and Canva to create effective email marketing campaigns and custom graphics to enhance your content.

Successful marketing is all about creativity, so don’t be afraid to buck the norm and embrace emerging or unusual marketing channels, such as running a local networking group or using Facebook Live videos. Networking and marketing go hand in hand, all those new people are learning about you and your business after all, and brands like Keller Williams are using live videos to interact with customers and build brand awareness.

3. Provide real value

To really make inspiring content that pushes your marketing game to the highest level, you need to create content that offers real value. If you’re looking for examples of industry content that does just that, look no further than Zillow’s interactive rent vs. buy calculator.

Zillow’s tool makes it easy for prospective property buyers to determine how many years they would need to own a property before buying becomes cheaper than renting. It’s intuitive and interactive, and it lets you tweak everything from big things like the property price to nuanced details like your tax filing status. Ultimately, tools like this ingratiate customers to the brands that provide them, turning Zillow into even more of a resource and giving prospects a powerful reason to return.

While you may not have the resources Zillow has, you can use services like Ion and SnapApp to easily create interactive content that your network will love for a good price. You can also provide value in other ways, such as through informative content like blog posts, ebooks, or even white papers. Whether you write these pieces yourself or not depends on how much time and capital you can commit to the process, but however you do it, these types of content can help you build your brand and market presence while providing real value to prospects.

Every commercial real estate professional depends on marketing. Whether you’re looking at it from a company-wide perspective or as a single broker, marketing is closely tied to networking, prospecting, and building your market presence. So it comes as no surprise that amplifying your marketing strategies is one of the best ways to boost your business. From creating truly interesting content to providing real value in every post, follow these tips to elevate your marketing game and win more business.