Brad Ackerman, owner and publisher of the Central Washington Real Estate Guide, launched his listing magazine in the Yakima Valley more than 20 years ago.
In that time, his guide has served as an indispensable tool for real estate professionals in Washington. However, with the desire to up his company’s online presence this year, he signed up with RISMedia’s ACE.
Here, Ackerman discusses the importance of capturing a millennial audience and how to successfully grow a business by increasing social media engagement.
We wanted to let people know that they can follow us and get good tips on the real estate, mortgage and home-buying and -selling process. We're trying to grow our presence that way to get them more interested in the guide.
How else are you utilizing social media?
Each month on Facebook we feature the home highlighted on our cover. Occasionally, we'll boost an ad and pick the 30 - 60-year-old demographic in our area to try and see what’s going on.
How important is creating a digital message in a 2018 world?
Print is a lot more challenging nowadays with the internet. Yakima is still a small- to medium-sized community that's getting good results with print. Our magazines have been growing pages and I’m hoping to show people that we're also developing more and more into the digital area to help our customers get more activity. As we generate more followers, we can promote more of our lenders and agents, as well. I think that'll reach more people.
How do use your publication to drive people to social media?
On the cover of our magazine, we ask people to follow us. We have a half-page filler spot in the magazine to let people know to look for us on Facebook where they can find these articles.
"Once the posts go up, our numbers go up every day. The whole idea is to promote and grow our business."
Why did you feel ACE would be right for your publication?
It’s something new for us. I have a graphic artist who is in charge of putting a monthly post out, basically just announcing that the new issue is out, but we weren’t really growing our followers on Facebook. We lacked ideas in content and thought it would be good, not only for our customers, but for our readers, as well. I knew this content would be valuable.
How have ACE posts helped your business so far?
I’ve gotten feedback from people who said we were always innovative and that this information is a good addition. Folks are reading the posts and more people are seeing the magazine. Once the posts go up, our numbers go up every day. The whole idea is to promote and grow our business.
What sort of content do you think people want to read?
Anything to do with buying and selling. As millennials and professional people come out of college, there’s a lot they need to know. The posts are all very relevant when people are thinking of investing in a house. I even like the ideas of staging homes, painting, and what to consider when choosing a contractor. All of this also speaks to the building industry.
Any future plans for ACE?
I’m going to be taking some real estate courses with my son. We live on the West Coast and are looking at becoming agents, so I’m hoping to use ACE to support his career in the near future.
For more information, please visit ace.rismedia.com.