David Frey, Founder of MarketingBlogger.com and MarketingBestPractices.com, shares a great observation that should be applied to real estate, as well:
Internet Marketing Tools and Tips for Real Estate
Here is one of the videos from my “Secret Agent Blueprint” training, talking about the importance of keywords, and why they matter when choosing a domain name:
For more information about my “Secret Agent Blueprint” Course, check out: http://secretagentblueprint.com
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Many real estate agents approach their business from a “herd mentality”. They follow what the herd is doing in their office to market their listings.
Typical tasks include placing an ad in the local home buyer publication or newspaper articles.
These publications CAN generate leads, but results will be determined by the TYPE of ad that is placed. Most agents, across the Country, put in the same photo and info box type ad on a page that is filled with all the other listings, filling in with the ads that everyone else is doing at that office. Even those who pay for their own pages seem to feel they need to do the same thing – page after page of listing boxes with photos.
Do you realize that it costs the same to generate ONE lead as it does to generate HUNDREDS? The type of ad makes all the difference in the world.
Are you willing to follow the “herd” and practice “hope marketing”, or are you looking to ATTRACT prospects that you can qualify and convert to clients?
The key is to convert your ads, utilizing “Direct Response Marketing“.
The type of ads you place need to be targeted for the niche you work, or the type of property you are marketing. They also need to include a “call-to-action” – a reason the prospect needs to connect with you.
Every ad you place should lead a prospect into your marketing funnel, by starting with a lead generation form where you can gain vital information from them (ie. email address) to connect and deliver what they want to know, and then be able to cultivate a relationship with that prospect, to be able to convert them from a suspect to a prospect.
Develop a large network that knows you and knows what you do.
You’ve heard that you need to create a database of your Sphere of Influence (SOI). This is a collection of contact information on the people that you know, who know you – family members, friends, neighbors, members of groups you belong to, people you have done business with, etc.
You should always be adding to this database, whenever you meet someone new, and add them to a system that will keep you in front of them, and remind them that you are in business. Don’t forget to add all sellers that you list, and all buyers that you close. The biggest mistake that real estate agents make is forgetting clients once the sale is closed.
Follow up consistently to let your client’s know you care and are there to help.
Providing great content, that is quality information pertinent to your sphere, is very important. You can segregate your sphere by type of people there are. Do you have a portion that may be investors, or seniors, or at the stage to purchase their first home? Who are your prospects? What fears do they have? What concerns? What is most important to them or what do they need to know about?
Run a long-term follow up relationship-building campaign.
Building rapport and trust takes time. It’s important to maintain a long-running campaign so you can build a tribe of raving fans.
Automate your follow-up / relationship building efforts.
Using today’s technology, it’s easy to keep your messages going without you having to do the manual work. Using auto-responders, you can set up months or years worth of messages to be sent out on a regular basis, and it can be a set-it and forget-it system.
Differentiate yourself from your competitors.
The worst thing you can do is send out messages that tell people how great you are at selling homes, and how great your company is. Quite frankly- they don’t care! If your messages are not informative, humorous, or interesting, you will lose their interest. Your messages have to be about things that are important to THEM. Your prospects need to know you are interested in what fears and concerns they have. Don’t be like all the other agents in town that tout how great they are. Keep your prospects first and foremost in all your advertising. This will set you apart from your competition.
Was it the mode of advertising, or was it the AD itself?
Anita Clark, in Warner Robins Georgia, had a featured post today about a mode of advertising that she feels she was sucked in to getting. You can see her blog post here.
In her post she talks about buying in to advertising on the slip covers that go over the room key-cards for a hotel, and how this didn’t generate any leads for her, so her assumption is that she was suckered into a mode of advertising that just doesn’t work.
Looking for alternate ways to advertise (gorilla marketing), is actually the best way that you can stand out above the competition, and be seen first. But too many real estate professionals don’t put any thought into the type of ad they place on these items. They think that putting their face and contact information, and some sloppy slogan like “Your Hometown Realtor”, or “I’m the Best”, is going to get people to jump up and take action.
Every day people are bombarded withadvertising. With social media, and the internet, the quest for marketers to get our attention is overwhelming. Everywhere we look we are being “sold to”.
Nobody likes to be sold to.
So how do you stand out, without being “salesy”? How does your message get attention, and generate leads?
Here are question to take into consideration when creating your next marketing piece:
1. Is this advertising to a targeted audience (preferably the target audience you want to attract)? If the answer is “no”, then don’t run the ad.
a.“Blanket” advertising is a waste of money.
b.You have to be targeting the prospects that you want as clients.
2. What are the concerns of your target market?
3. What main concern can you draw attention to?
4. What can you offer to your prospects that will address their main concern, and get their attention?
a. Do you have something you can give them in return for their email address (ie. a special report).
5.Have you addressed the main concern in your ad, and have you provided a “call-to-action” (reason for them to go to your website, to give their email address, to get something of value)?
You see, advertising is only as good at the ad that is on it. Doing the same old thing that everyone else in your market is doing is NOT going to get you the results you need.
You need to find alternative advertising (special promotional items, direct mailing, farming) that will get the attention of your audience, and set you apart from your competition. But once you have that mode, you need to create advertising that speaks to and ATTRACTS the type of prospects that you want to work with, and give them a compelling reason to contact you.
And once you create the ad, TEST IT. See what works and what doesn’t. Professional marketers don’t give up on their first try with an ad. They test it, tweak it, and test it again.
What would your business be like if you were able to attract and only work with “ideal clients”? You know, those clients that you really gel with. The ones you enjoy helping, and they enjoy you! The type of clients that you look forward to speaking to when they call, and you almost hate to see the deal completed, because they were so much fun to work with!
Sound like a pipe dream?
What if I told you that you CAN attract your ideal clients to your business?
Think about the marketing that you do. Are you focusing on one particular type of client, or are you spreading your marketing out to the masses – doing everything that every other agent is doing – hoping to catch anyone that comes along?
In my last post, “Jack of All Trades”, I talked about trying to be everything to everyone. Well, your marketing is probably doing the same thing.
Most real estate advertising is not set up to attract specific prospects. It’s the same old, tired listing information. Travel across this Country, and pick up a real estate magazine in ANY town, and you will see a lot of the same thing. Page after page of listing ads, with photos of agents, and lists of their “hype” (like We’re the Best, or Our Service is #1, etc).
Isn’t it any wonder that the average consumer thinks we’re all just the same?
Now, what if you could create targeted marketing pieces that resonate with the specific type of client that you are wanting to attract? What if your marketing could speak to that particular client – could address their concerns, fears, aspirations? How do you think that could change the response you get on your ads? Do you think that would make a difference?
I challenge you to really think out a new process the next time you are preparing your marketing.
I believe that if you take this approach, even on just one piece in your marketing, you will see an amazing difference in the response you receive!
Michelle has over 16 years of internet marketing experience, and has recently developed a program to assist other Realtors in learning how to set up and grow their business utilizing the tools that today’s technology provides. Secret Agent Blueprint teaches Realtors how to harness the internet to create a lead generation system that will generate quality leads for themselves, without paying some high-priced lead company for leads that don’t ever amount to anything. Using today’s technology, Realtors can easily dominate their market.
Be sure to check out Secret Agent Blueprint to find out more about this step-by-step program.
Before getting wrapped up in business, and starting the new year with a bang, it’s important to look back at the past year (the good AND the bad) because it really sets the baseline of what you can achieve this next year – especially if you take the lessons to heart.
First of all, acknowledge and appreciate what happened during 2011.
Take time to sit down and write out the following questions:
Here is a clip from a training seminar that I did at Keller Williams in Slidell Louisiana, that discusses why to use video in your real estate business.
If you want to know more about how Video can transform your business, my good friends Lewis Howes & James Wedmore have put together a very special video revealing exactly how to get massive results with Youtube. Check out their VIDEO TRAINING ACADEMY