In our last blog article, WAV Group PR and Communications Strategist Myra Jolivet distinguishes between marketing and public relations tactics. Magnetic PR storytelling elevates your voice and supplements your competitive edge. While Communications plans do not need to be complex or expensive, they do need to be laser targeted to specific audiences with a resounding message. The hardest part is serving the demands of your market segment by delivering newsworthy advances in innovation.
Communications in a Crisis
WAV Group has done significant in-depth analysis in the real estate industry to understand market share growth of companies that are outperforming their peers during COVID times. As analysts in the industry for over two decades, we have evaluated business practices that clearly create differentiated success. Warren Buffet made the comment in a 2018 LinkedIn video stating “the one easy way to become worth 50 percent more than you are now — at least — is to hone your communication skills, both written and verbal.” We have seen this idea withstand the industrial impact of COVID – undoubtedly a century event. During COVID, companies with strong communications strategies, such as Inside Real Estate and Delta Media Group, have grown faster than those missing a game plan, who must scramble to react. The need to react wisely in a crisis always presents challenges; effective communication creates survivors.
2020 Trends in PropTech Funding
There is also evidence that indicates that strong communications can create enormous investments in dreams that may or may not come true. Our stock market is so ridiculously over valued that bankers are increasingly venturing funds into the real estate sector. Who gets funded? The companies that have strong communications programs. If their public message is sound, and well-distributed – they gain word of mouth, people talk, funding comes their way, hopefully they execute well, and eventually find their way to profitability. I am always amazed to look at the valuations of public companies that have a P/E ratio of nothing, like Zillow. These are growth business that always perform very well when interest rates are low and access to capital is high.
Products start with communications – typically introduced to the market via a news announcement, and to consumers through activity on social media. Fine-tuning this language and image is your brand’s opportunity to gauge true interest by illustrating the need for its product to the journalists shaping our industry’s narrative. PR messaging is simultaneously backed by marketing – evidence that the product or service meets the needs of its target audience delivered by paid advertising.
The takeaway? You need to do your research.
Information is power.
Too often, innovators build before they ask. And once a product has been built, they do not pursue any reasonable way to articulate their WHY. When you start with research, you may conduct quantitative surveys for what people like or dislike about your product or service. You include open-ended questions to probe and discover details of your users’ experience. You listen carefully for the words they use to describe what they value or criticize. You cross tab the research to find demographic markers that may contribute to diversity in opinion. Real estate agents trend older, years in real estate and volume of transactions provides significant variance in how questions are answered.
After you have done your research, you need to focus on interviews. Pick up the phone, ask people questions, and listen closely to the feedback you receive through these conversations. You will find similarities and disparities across experiences that inform your communications and the decisions that you make in the development and execution of your strategy.
Collect unbiased data.
Getting outside help from firms like WAV Group to support you in your research and development before your communication plan will make sure that you hit your target in the most effective manner. If you want to be a successful news maker, build a strong brand message, and communicate your value to the people that are most likely to partner with you (or influence those that will partner with you)– let’s talk.