Brand EditorialElite Agent

Tara Christianson: Online branding and marketing

Between 2006 and 2012, Tara Christianson was a licensed real estate agent in the Washington DC and Virginia areas. Along the way, she learned about digital and online marketing, and started teaching that to her colleagues. She moved to Australia six years ago and shifted to full-time consulting to other real estate companies in New Zealand, Australia, and the United States. Starting as REA Group’s Branding Specialist in February of 2019, Tara now spends a great deal of time talking to real estate businesses in Australia about online marketing, branding and how they can help achieve growth for real estate businesses in today’s complex digital world.

Tara Christianson will be speaking at Prop20 in March. To register for this event visit

Tara, what’s your area of speciality?
Online branding and online marketing for real estate agents. It’s not really for the company, but it is more focused on the individual agent.

As an example, we would visit an agency and speak to the individual agents and the takeaways would be things they could implement on top of what the agency provides them as a company.

What topic(s) will you be speaking on at Prop20?
The main focus will be on mastering your digital brand but with an emphasis on the human side of it.

In this day and age, the human element is becoming almost a luxury. We make a phone call and you have to press zero 60 times until you speak to a human.

When you have something as important and emotional as a real estate transaction, bringing that human side of it back is really important.

There are ways you can use technology to do that, so it’s just helping agents understand the leverage points.

Technology should allow you to have that face-to-face connection because people buy people.

What’s one key technology mistake you see real estate agents making and how would you fix it?
I think they forget the social part of social media. Some agents use it as a channel to put messages out there, and that’s one way of using it, but there’s actually three ways to use social media.

One way is to talk, another way is to listen, and the third way is to engage. Sometimes they forget the other two pieces, which is to listen and to engage.

I think when we’re trying to build trust online, being able to master those three pieces of social media is more important than ever.

Listening to what a client’s concern is or reading behind the lines of some of the things consumers talk about online can really improve the connection you can make.

If someone talks about their family all the time online and shares a lot of pictures of them, then family is going to be important to them and it might make it difficult for them to sell their house because there’s going to be a strong emotional attachment.

What trend/s do you predict we will see in online branding in 2020?
I think people are going to ignore more things that mean nothing to them. They are going to ignore generic marketing messages, and they’re going to expect more tailored marketing messages.

Show More

Kylie Dulhunty

Kylie Dulhunty is the Editor at Elite Agent.