The co-founder of Digital Real Estate Assistant (DREA) explains more about the startup and how it tremendously contributes to the property scene.
For the uninitiated, Singapore-based DREA is a revolutionary adtech and martech startup that helps small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the property industry reach their target audiences through digital marketing campaigns created using a mobile app. In “4 steps, 60 seconds”, the application will create an ad, establish a landing page and even build in the most relevant targeting sets for the advertiser, as one of its many automatic methods to optimise the ad campaign. The best part is, the user need not have any digital marketing or tech background at all, as the app will do all their work for them.
“From my past career in finance I came to realise that one of the hardest things for people to get right is marketing. Especially when you are small business owner, your marketing dollars are very constrained, forcing to find other ways to do marketing and do it very well. We felt that there must be an easy way for anyone and everyone, including small business owners to be able to do marketing really well. So, we created this platform that will help you do just that,” explains Yuet Whey, who together with her husband serves as the co-founder of DREA.
Real estate being a concentrated market in Singapore, presented itself as the perfect launching pad to implement the technology that Yuet Whey and her team came up with. In more than a year since the creation of DREA, real estate agents have benefited tremendously in particular, as the application helps them with the copywriting and creation of ads as well as generation and follow-up of leads. Currently, the startup is revolutionising the industry with PushAds, its ingenious digital marketing tool.
However, DREA’s services are not limited to SMEs and sole business owners but provides curated services for the industry heavyweights as well.
“When serving other clients like developers and real estate agencies, we leverage on the same technology and the same platform but we serve them in a more bespoke manner. This is where we take on the branding and come out with a full-blown campaigns to meet the client’s objectives, such as lead generation or quick sale of properties,” says Yuet Whey.
We sat down with Yuet Whey to further understand DREA and where the technology is heading to.
DREA currently focuses on the property industry. Any ideas to introduce similar methodology to another industry in Singapore?
We started out in the real estate market, where there was a naturally large base of small business owners, or real estate agents. Very quickly, we’d started getting requests from small business owners from other industries who wanted the ability to do marketing, and do it well with a simple-to-use app. At the moment, we are planning our expansion of our PushAds into other markets and industries.
What about plans to introduce DREA in other parts of Southeast Asia?
Yes, we are currently planning to expand DREA to other parts of Asia Pacific. We have received numerous requests from small business owners across different countries to introduce PushAds for their respective industry or countries. Today, we have already started serving a small but expanding group of advertisers in other markets including Malaysia, Thailand and Australia.
In what ways are the property scene in Singapore different from the one in Malaysia?
The market (in Malaysia) is a lot more fragmented and diverse than the Singapore market. From a purely geographical perspective, we have properties, buyers, tenants and real estate agents across multiple states in Malaysia with varying behaviours. It is a big country and that opens up a lot of new opportunities for us, but at the same time it also makes it more challenging to reach the real estate agents in Malaysia. Similarly, given traffic and travel time, real estate agents in Malaysia tend to serve estates and neighbourhoods around their home, and are less likely to pursue opportunities in areas further away. It is therefore important for us to recognize the difference in market landscape between both countries when considering the market. It would be a mistake if we were to apply a “plug-and-play” approach.
What is the most important aspect in digital marketing?
The most important aspect to digital marketing is getting both the digital marketing funnel and sales funnel right. It’s about building up a system that doesn’t just give you the right traffic to your website, but converts that traffic into leads for the business and then having in place a system that would pre-qualify that lead, nurture it and convert that lead into sales. Without having a proper funnel in place, it’s easy to stop too early in the process. To achieve these things, start out by first tracking and understanding how a prospect journeys from the first interaction with your brand and product to the ultimate objective for a business, a sale.
At the moment social media seems to be the ultimate tool in digital marketing. Do you see its reign ending soon? If yes, what is the next platform of digital marketing? Or do you see marketing venturing even beyond digital?
Social media is an extremely powerful tool when used properly and in our view, will remain highly relevant. We believe that going forward, consumers will continue to spend meaningful time on social media but will be more aware of privacy and data shared. We also see a future where even out of home ads, billboards for example can be digitised and made more personalised.
*Interview by Lim Eng Chong and Vimal Palasekaran.
*All images by Yuet Whey of DREA.
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