Bruce Kerr: Tell me about your Mid-Century Modern marketing.
Drew Marye: I’m the only broker in Austin that advertises in Atomic Ranch, and have been for, gosh, probably the last ten years maybe? That is a very specific group of clientele, buyers, sellers, that all share the same passion for Mid-Century Modern architecture, and it goes back to what I was saying earlier, that that community will resonate with one another. Obviously that’s how you found me, which was through my Atomic Ranch ad, through your realtor in Portland.
Bruce Kerr: How did you develop your website? What’s remarkable about your website?
Drew Marye: My website … I did have a very kitschy, retro vibe to my website that would kind of play into the Mid-Century Modern genre, but have you seen my website lately? I just revamped it. Here, I’ll show it. I cleaned it up. It says “Austin, Texas realtors specializing in Mid-Century Modern homes, modern architecture and residential real estate in the Austin metro … ” Those are all tag words, buzz words, that will generate my search engine and my site. If you Google “Mid-Century Modern Austin” …
Bruce Kerr: You’re the number one?
Drew Marye: Bam! That’s me. And that took ten years. I don’t have a guy enhancing my search words, or everything else, but basically then it goes to … That’s a Mid-Century Modern furniture, and I do a lot of networking with those companies, too, where the lifestyle translates over to furniture, music … I advertise on The Lounge Show, which is a 50s lounge program Saturday mornings on KOOP, and I’ve had people walk through my door, and they’re like, “I heard you on KOOP!” And guess what?! They love 50s music.
Bruce Kerr: What do you with Uptown Modern?
Drew Marye: Uptown Modern, I’ll take brochures in there and put the word out like, “Hey, I’ve got a great new listing coming up.” That’s a great opportunity, too, if I want to get staging items for any trophy Mid-Century Modern houses, I can go to Uptown and say, “Hey, give me a few pieces to put in this house; we’ll put out some literature on your company. We can price the units out.” A lot of times they’ll have extra stuff in the back that they can’t fit on the floor, you got to draw it in, a seamless operation. So that’s a neat Mid-Century marketing campaign that you can do with other businesses that share interests.
Bruce Kerr: Other than a furniture place, what other business would you market with? Or network with?
Drew Marye: Mortgage lenders, obviously.
Bruce Kerr: What do you do with mortgage lenders?
Drew Marye: Mortgage lenders … You can’t submit any offers in town without a pre-qualification, or pre-approval letter, so you’ve got to map somebody out. As I tell all my clients, you’re putting together a team. You’ve got the realtor, the mortgage broker, and you need the buyer. If we don’t all work closely together, you’re not going to be buying a house.
Bruce Kerr: Okay.
Drew Marye: It’s the team, and I’m the captain. I’m running the show.
Bruce Kerr: Okay.
Drew Marye: I’ve developed so many relationships over the years that I trust a lot of brokers, like, “Hey, if he says you’re golden, we’re going to get it closed, one way or the other.” Now, there’s always sometimes setbacks and hurdles you got to clear at the least minute, but …
Bruce Kerr: Okay.
Drew Marye: The other thing is … let me show you this … even if you do “Modern Austin,” I’m second, because that was a website called “Modern Austin,” so … And modern-style homes … I get a ton of hits on that, as far as just the Google searches. The other thing is Yelp. That plays into realtors.
Bruce Kerr: Yelp does?
Drew Marye: Yelp does, yeah. I’ve had a bad review on Yelp from one of my agents that no longer works with me for like five years, and you can’t get it off unless you get in bed with Yelp and you pay them like five hundred bucks a month and then it disappears. That’s their business practice. I haven’t agreed to do that because I think it’s a waste of money. If you get people that will really appreciate the job that you’ve done, and you get them a great house, and navigate them through the whole process, I have asked clients to put a little something on Yelp. “Yeah, we’ll do that.” “Okay, great!”
Now there’s an algorithm, do you have any other Yelp reviews on Yelp right now in Austin?
Drew Marye: I still have the retro color. I cleaned up my logo, though, and basically, if you get on this website right now, you’re not going to see any hard Mid-Century Modern branding.
Bruce Kerr: Okay.
Drew Marye: Okay? I had a lot of, not complaints, comments from my agents like, “Hey, I didn’t get that listing in Circle C Ranch because they only thought we sold Mid-Century Modern houses.” And I can’t do that. You’ve got to stay … I still think it has a real clean boutique vibe to it, I think it’s very Austin-y, but I got rid of all the starbursts, and the boomerangs, and all that shit, so it’s clean, it’s lean …
Bruce Kerr: Where did you get it?
Drew Marye: I had one of my graphic designers here design the template, and then I went with a real estate guy who does real estate websites to basically host it for me and build it, so I could get the back end. It’s not a WordPress, or anything.
Bruce Kerr: How many leads a week are you getting from that?
Drew Marye: It could be feast or famine. Some weeks, none. No. If we need more listings, I need more traffic. I get a lot of hits from Atomic Ranch, but those are typically … those people will email me directly.
Drew Marye: But from the website traffic, I think it’s people just coming to see what listings we have, because we’re known for eclectic properties.
Bruce Kerr: What do you do with Facebook?
Drew Marye: Facebook, for listings, there are several realtor groups. This one was the first one, and it’s like three thousand members, and there’s probably nine thousand licensed real estate agents in Austin, but there’s three thousand here, and these are all central Austin folks, they have a good client base. This is where people put up their coming soons, their needs, their wants, you name it. Like, “Hey, I got a great new house on Briar Road coming up in Zilker, $999,000, who wants to take it down?” And I got probably get it sold before I put it in MLAS.
That’s between other realtors. And then you’ve got the Marye site, which is just kind of a fan-based deal. This is something we should blow up a lot more. I’ve had eight visits this week. You can promote your page. You can pay on here, but I’ve got to get in to … The best way to do it is you invite more people to your site. You find some friends that have a thousand friends, and then they send it out to all their people, and then it just starts snowballing.