You need to market your services – but do you know your audience?
Real estate isn’t like it was back when I started in 1985. You can’t just go to the office and expect that your agency’s advertising will bring in buyers and sellers who will be yours because it is your floor day.
It could happen, I suppose, but even in a busy city, I doubt that it would bring you enough business to support yourself.
For one thing, buyers and sellers are more choosy now. They don’t want just any agent – they want one who knows how to help them in their specific quest to buy or sell.
And not every buyer and seller is the same. A first time buyer has different needs than an affluent buyer looking to move up. A divorcing couple has different needs than an estate executor wanting to sell a house in probate or a member of the military who is being reassigned.
And then there’s you. You also have different wants and interests than some other agent. You might really enjoy helping first time buyers, divorcing couples, or seniors who are relocating, while the agent next to you is only interested in selling waterfront homes – or horse properties – or homes on golf courses.
Your marketing should be designed to attract the clients you most enjoy working with. After all – this is what you do every day.
Instead of sitting there waiting for client to come to you, promote yourself – and do it in a way that makes your most desired prospects think “That’s the agent I need.”
This is a 5-step process:
- Step #1 is to decide which clients you want most.
- Step #2 is to determine what is important to them.
- Step #3 is to decide which of your skills, talents, and personality traits to share in order to show that you offer what they want most.
- Step #4 is to put that information in writing or in a video, or both.
- Step #5 is to get it in front of them.
Are you following these steps, or are you just throwing some information out there and hoping someone will see it and choose you?
We hear a lot about the evils of profiling, but that is exactly what you need to be doing in order to appeal to the clients you want. It has nothing to do with race or religion, and everything to do with hopes, dreams, worries, fears, and expectations.
All sellers want to get the highest dollar for their homes and all buyers want to buy the best for the least. They want to know that you have the skills and you’ll work hard to help them reach those goals.
But there’s much more to it than that, because buying or selling a home is an emotional transaction as well as a financial one. You need to create trust on both levels.
If you’ve chosen to develop a geographic territory, you’ll need to demonstrate that you know that territory inside out. You’ll also need to understand the people. While some areas are a mix of young and old, some are populated primarily by people in a specific age group, and most do have a general income level, as evidenced by the average value of the homes.
What concerns the buyers who might want to reside in that area? Is it schools, safety, or proximity to shopping, health care, or work?
What concerns the sellers? Is it privacy, security, or something else?
If you’ve chosen a property-specific niche, such as waterfront properties, historic homes, or condominiums, you’ll need to demonstrate your knowledge of all the rules and regulations affecting those homes.
You’ll also need to develop insight into the people who occupy or want to occupy those homes. What are their interests and passions? What are their worries? What do they want most from their agent?
If you’ve chosen a situational niche, such as senior relocation, probate, divorce, or financial distress, or even first time buyers, you’ll need to demonstrate your understanding and empathy for people in that situation. You might need to stress your patience along with your professional expertise.
In all cases, your knowledge, your expertise, your understanding, and your obvious caring are what will will show that you are a trustworthy guide.
Take time to think about your perfect clients – the ones you want most to serve.
Create a profile of one buyer or seller to use as a representative of your target audience.
Describe that person in writing – age, income, occupation, marital status, family makeup (including kids, pets, parents) health status, hobbies, dreams, desires, goals, worries, and fears. This might be a past client or a compilation of several. Find a face in a magazine or on line and include that face with your description. Give him or her a name.
THEN create your marketing materials.
When you begin to write, whether it’s a blog post, an email, a print ad, a brochure, a property description, or a prospecting letter, write to that person. Direct your marketing toward him or her by emphasizing the knowledge, the expertise, and the personality traits that will be most appealing to that one person. When you write a property description, focus on the benefits and features that will most appeal to your target client.
Imagine him or her reading it (or watching it if you’re doing video) and imagine the reaction. Is this what that person wants to know, or will he or she think “So what?”
My real estate prospecting letters are a good start, because they’re written to appeal to people in a variety of different situations.
They can be used effectively just as they are, but you can make them even better by personalizing them with a sentence or two about your experience relative to the type of buyer, seller, or property.
QUOTES OF THE WEEK
“Good marketers see consumers as complete human beings with all the dimensions real people have.” – Jonah Sachs
“Make your marketing so useful people would pay you for it.”
“The best marketing doesn’t feel like marketing.”
Next week we’ll talk about Step #5 – and all the ways you can get your message in front of the clients you most want to serve.
Until then, I wish you joy and prosperity,
P.S. Do you have something to add? Please use the comment section below to share your knowledge.
Man waiting at desk Image courtesy of photostock at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Julie Mahoney says
You’re always on point. I always enjoy your posts!
Thank you Julie!