WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO
SELL REAL ESTATE TODAY?
Do you have to be a slick salesman with the best closing skills?
Do you have to spend thousands and thousands of dollars in Internet leads?
Well, it depends on what your goals are. Are you in it to run a long-term business or did you just get your license to do real estate “on the side”?
Many agents use real estate as a side business for supplemental income. If that’s you, that’s great, but this guide is probably not for you. Anyone who can sell a house here and there in addition to having another source of income should!
Who This is For…
This guide is meant for agents who want to run a business and sell real estate as a full time career. It’s for agents who want to eventually leverage a team or brokerage. If this is your goal, congrats you are in the right place! It’s my goal to give you the roadmap of how to get there.
So what does it take to sell real estate in the year 2017 and beyond?
You need a business plan and model that embraces the concept of being a marketer
because just having a license is not enough….
Why Having A License Is Not Enough?
With technology today, consumers can do anything a licensed real estate agent can. Zillow, Trulia, and all the flat fee type brokerages are greater competition to you than other agents, but don’t get scared by it, get better.
COMPETITION CREATES INNOVATION, WHICH IS WHAT OUR COUNTRY IS BUILT ON. Compete and fight!
Consumers no longer need an agent to buy or sell a house, however they overwhelmingly decide to use them.
Why Do Consumers Still Use Real Estate Agents…
Consumers need agents for two reasons;
- They need our expertise to confirm important financial buying or selling decisions. No kind of technology will ever replace human intelligence or interaction.
- They need our expertise to navigate the entire process for them because they have no idea what to do step by step.
So what the hell does this mean? How do I step up my game and compete?
Simple… Give them what they want.
I have studied these trends over the past several years and created a blueprint for running a real estate business. You ready?
O.K., first things first. Let me define the difference between marketing and advertising. Advertising is cold lead generation. It is creating a marketing piece geared towards specific actions you want potential leads to take to create a lead.
MARKETING IS THE STORY OF HOW
YOUR BUSINESS RELATES TO
POTENTIAL CLIENTS AND CONSUMERS.
It’s everything you do in your business ongoing. It’s your referral marketing campaigns, transactional marketing systems, and combination of alternative lead generation strategies.
Marketing is your game plan. Advertising is your play call. Advertising is a 40-yard dash, but marketing is the marathon.
Did you know that selling real estate has changed more in the last 10 years than in the previous 100?
Information on real estate is no longer controlled by Realtors. Consumers have access to the same information you do by logging online. Therefore our role has is greater emphasized in the services we offer vs. the information we control. However, that information STILL NEEDS TO BE ANALYZED! That’s where you come in!
Every successful business is run by having systems and processes in place. The most important systems to have in place are the marketing systems.
LET’S BREAKDOWN THE 3 MARKETING SYSTEMS YOU MUST MASTER IF YOU ARE IN THE REAL ESTATE GAME TO WIN IT!
- Referral & Repeat Business Marketing (friends & family)
- Transactional Marketing (customer service)
- Cold Marketing (Farm, FSBO, Expired, ETC)
REFERRAL & REPEAT BUSINESS MARKETING
Referral and repeat business marketing is where you start. The reason is simple. 61% of all consumers chose their agents because they were either referred to them or used them in the past.
Referral marketing is simple. It’s just about staying in front of your “audience” so that you are thought of when real estate comes to mind. Your “audience” is also known as your sphere of influence. Roughly 15% of your “audience” will be moving this year and could use your help. Marketing your audience keeps your name on top of mind so that you get that direct business.
METHOD USED TO FIND REAL ESTATE AGENT
|REFERRED BY (OR IS) A FRIEND, NEIGHBOR OR RELATIVE||38%|
|USED AGENT PREVIOUSLY TO BUY OR SELL A HOME||23|
|PERSONAL CONTACT BY AGENT (TELEPHONE, EMAIL, ETC.)||5|
|REFERRED THROUGH EMPLOYER OR RELOCATION COMPANY||4|
|SAW CONTACT INFORMATION ON FOR SALE/OPEN HOUSE SIGN||4|
|REFERRED BY ANOTHER REAL ESTATE OR BROKER||4|
|VISITED AN OPEN HOUSE AND MET AGENT||4|
|WALKED INTO OR CALLED OFFICE AND AGENT WAS ON DUTY||2|
|DIRECT MAIL (NEWSLETTER, FLYER, POSTCARD, ETC.)||2|
|NEWSPAPER, YELLOW PAGES OR HOME BOOK AD||1|
|ADVERTISING SPECIALTY (CALENDAR, MAGNET, ETC.)||1|
More importantly, 100% of your audience knows someone who is moving this year. Staying relevant amongst your audience will allow your name to be thrown around a lot more than if you didn’t do it. In other words, marketing your audience will create referrals. With a referral marketing system in place, you can turn your “audience” into a sales force that you don’t have to pay.
You want to market your audience through three main channels. You should implement direct mail, email, and social media referral marketing campaigns.
TRANSACTIONAL MARKETING SYSTEMS
What are transactional marketing systems and why do I need them?
Have you ever watched The Profit on T.V.? If not I highly suggest you do. Marcus’ formula is very simple. He turns around failing businesses with a 3-principle approach. People, Product, & PROCESS.
In real estate you are the people. If people like you they will do business with you. I cannot change your personality or how you relate to others, but I can tell you the most successful agents are highly likable!
Product is the service you are performing.
In real estate, your product consists of all the ways you work with buyers or sellers. It’s your customer service. It’s you getting coffee for your buyer clients before a showing. It’s the way you run your business. It’s the overall customer experience you deliver. Real estate is a service based business.
PROCESS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT!
The majority of businesses that Marcus fixes in “The Profit” have a broken process. He
comes in, streamlines the process, then scales it. Marketing and Service are the only reasons people still hire us. Let me give you two specific examples of transactional marketing systems in real estate:
- You are selling someone’s house and they hire you for the listing. Anyone today can find a flat fee service, put a home on the MLS, and put a sign in the yard. A true marketer is going to know how to position that home to the general public, apply different marketing strategies to it, and retrieve the seller a higher sales price than if they did it alone, making your commission justified. Your marketing plan is part of your transactional marketing system for listing homes. In addition, part of your service is making that transaction as seamless as possible by having a streamlined process in place. Having a step-by-step process for how you handle every listing from the initial meeting to the closing gift is also part of transactional marketing.
- You are working with a buyer in a tight inventory market and you cannot find anything for sale. A typical Realtor will just wait for something to pop on the MLS, but a marketer will seek out a property for their client to buy that is off market. They will search FSBO’s, send out mailers, and target a property to purchase. You need marketing skills to do this, but it’s part of the service you offer. This is the extra value that no online information source can provide.
SO LET ME ASK YOU A QUESTION?
What are the goals of each and every client you work with?
- They should be to assist them in their upcoming real estate transaction and eventually earning a commission for a job well done.
- They should also be to leverage that relationship and transaction into additional spin off business. If you are not leveraging your current business to pick up new business then you have no transactional marketing systems in place. Your goal should be to turn every client into one of your unpaid sales reps with them referring their family and friends to you. You can only do this when they become an evangelist for your brand. They become an evangelist for your brand when they love your service, you remain relevant to them over time, and you stay in touch.
Transactional Marketing systems address all of this and set up your business for future scaling, consistency, and most importantly…ROCKSTAR SERVICE.
This should be the last group of systems to set up. Cold marketing is advertising to create leads. This is what most call “marketing”.
Why is this is the last group of systems to create?
First is they cost money. If you are ready to invest into marketing your business, don’t you want to get the most out of it? An agent running a business should funnel all leads generated into their referral and transactional marketing systems.
Once your process for lead intake is set up with customer service centric systems your conversion will go through the roof. It’s not difficult to make the phone ring.
It’s difficult to convert that call into an appointment and then into a client. When your transactional marketing systems are up and running, you have an effective process set up.
UNFORTUNATELY MANY REALTORS WANT TO IMMEDIATELY JUMP INTO COLD MARKETING STRATEGIES RIGHT AWAY WITHOUT SETTING UP THE BASICS.
This is a big no no because of the following examples;
- You meet with a newly listed FSBO and hit if off! Unfortunately the FSBO wants to test out the market before hiring you. They want to give it 90 days and then list the house with an agent. If you are the first one they meet with and you make a great impression, how do you stay in touch with that potential lead without being sleazy over the next 90 days? You put them into your referral marketing systems and drip on them until they are ready. They will be less likely to forget about you and will come back when ready! You are using your referral marketing to stay relevant and on top of mind. You use your transactional marketing listing presentation and process to WOW them so they want to do business with you. Without having both referral marketing and transactional marketing systems in place, it becomes more likely that you never hear back and the FSBO ends up listing with someone else because they forgot you exist.
- You meet with a FSBO who has absolutely no idea what they are doing. They realize that they will net more money listing with an agent despite having to pay a commission, but they now want to interview 3-4 agents to make sure they hire the right one. When you have an actual marketing plan for their house that consists of more than listing it on the MLS and putting a sign in the yard, you are more likely to compete for that business. This is the importance of transactional marketing. Your listing presentation is nothing more than your step-by-step process of what you do to market your listings for sale. Agents who have a better process are more likely to get the listing than those who have no process.
Make Sense? Do you see the difference in running a business vs. being thrown around by one?
THE GOAL OF COLD MARKETING SYSTEMS
Should be to create relationships with people you previously did not know that should be nurtured and eventually transformed to clients. Yes you will get some who are ready to work with you right away, but more importantly, you will turn longer term leads into more clients and build a pipeline of business. Now let’s talk about cold marketing systems in general. There are many different ways to fish for leads, but you want to pair whichever best suits your personality. Once you set up a cold marketing system that’s cranking all you do is streamline it, hand it off to a team member, and start another one.
We show you how to use a content marketing approach to the following so you can apply a sell without selling technique to each and every cold lead generation strategy. The Glengarry Glen Ross sales days are DEAD.
Consumers don’t want to be sold they want to be served.
Here are some easy cold lead generation target markets you should go after.
- FOR SALE BY OWNERS
- CANCELLED/EXPIRED LISTINGS
- ABSENTEE OWNERS
- FACEBOOK ADS
- INTERNET BUYER LEADS
- INTERNET SELLER LEADS
We can go on and on but if you implemented just these six systems, in addition to everything else we covered you’d be way ahead of the curve.
CO N C LU S I O N
So, the ball’s in your court. I hope this gave you a better idea of how to run a real estate business vs. being run by one. Being a real estate agent is not easy despite what your friends tell you. People think it’s the easiest job in the world, but we know nothing can be further from the truth. Real estate professionals are considered one of the most stressful jobs to have, but it doesn’t have to be that way once you know how to run a business.
I hope this gave you a great bird’s eye view of how to run your real estate business. I’d love to hear from you so check out some of my articles on real estate marketing.
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