Building your career as a real estate agent takes patience, consistency, and understanding the real estate market. One of the most important things you will need to excel in the field is knowing how to market yourself.
Marketing yourself is one of the many keys to developing a strong brand that your perspective clientele trust. It is not something that can be done overnight, but instead manifests itself through time and consistency.
There is no ‘one size fits all’ when it comes to marketing yourself successfully. Despite this, there are some areas to focus on to build your personal brand.
Focus on a Niche
Focussing on a niche allows you to become an expert in your own field. It's far easier to market yourself and develop recognisability if your focus is in one area.
An additional benefit of focussing on a smaller area is that it can be easier to target vendors and clients. In tight knit communities, traditional advertising forms like newspaper ads and flyers tend to be more effective as they breed word of mouth discussion amongst community members.
Focussing on a niche is not limited to location, it could include a specific style of property you sell best. You might excel in selling off the plan developments, alternatively, you may have a knack for selling older properties with great renovation potential. Selling different types of properties requires different skill sets. You may not be the go-to for a geographical area, but you could be the expert for a specific property type.
Your goal is to be the 'go-to' for a particular region or property type by proving your expertise and excellence in that field. People respect knowledge and want to feel as though they are working with the best of the best.
Many real estate agents fall into the trap of spreading themselves too thinly to attract more clients. This can be detrimental, as you risk losing potential clients to a competitor with more expertise. Use what you have a natural gift for, combined with your skillset and become the expert of that field. Make it known to your target audience that you are the expert, and that will become a significant part of your brand.
Testimonials are an incredibly powerful way to build trust with potential vendors. A positive testimonial from a customer demonstrates that you are reliable, trustworthy and great at your job.
People are more likely to trust testimonials in comparison to other forms of advertising. Potential clients want to hear from their peers, as they have nothing to gain from a positive recommendation. Try to encourage your past and present clients to leave reviews on your page, and to be as detailed as possible. Often it isn't the big things that people remember, but the personal touches, which separate their experience from others.
After collecting testimonials from a range of your clients, use them as advertisement material. A great way to do this is to set up a reviews page where potential clients can browse through reviews. Another option is to use excerpts from testimonials on your social media. Remember, testimonials are great but can only be helpful if they are seen by others.
Knowledge of the real estate industry is important, but who you know is arguably more important. Actively creating and developing relationships to build your network is a significant part of marketing yourself.
Not all of these relationships need to be with current or potential clientele. Consider reaching out to people such as builders or developers who work on new projects. Find out who is operating in your area and get to know them. In these relationships, prove yourself to be who you say you are to reinforce your personal brand.
These relationships don’t need to be exclusive or a predominant part of your everyday activities. Simply developing these relationships so you are able to keep each other in mind as future opportunities arise will be mutually beneficial for you both, and help to create a sense of community.
Put Yourself Out There
In the age of digital media, there are many different ways that real estate agents can get brand exposure without breaking the bank.
Property investors are always seeking to learn more through a myriad of channels, so getting yourself involved in these is great exposure. Recently podcasts have become increasingly popular, particularly educational ones. Get in touch with property investment or real estate podcasts and enquire about becoming a special guest on an episode. After all, you are an expert in your field so your knowledge is valuable.
Similarly, there are a number of community groups that get together and talk about property, both physically and online. Do some research and gain some insight into these groups. Find out if they are in the midst of planning an event in which a guest speaker is required, perhaps they would value your input. Joining these groups and becoming involved can help with brand exposure and developing new relationships.
Another overlooked avenue to get exposure is through real estate industry magazines and publications. Such publications are often looking for stories to run. Bringing a story directly to a publication is mutually beneficial as it provides you with opportunity and exposure, and saves the publication time. In this instance, the story you are providing should highlight how or why you are the expert in your niche.
Once again, exposure and relationship building are key.
Social media is a great marketing tool to increase your brand awareness. There are a number of tips you can follow to create and maintain a great social media presence. By learning about your audience, you can really focus on the social media platform that your target market interacts with the most.
By posting organically, you can reach your followers and keep them engaged and up to date with new projects you have. When it comes to branching out to a new audience and gaining traction, you will need to use paid advertising on these platforms.
With this in mind, social media is a great toolset which is well worth its time to explore. Now more than ever, consumers may search you on Facebook or Instagram before a Google search. For this reason, it's important to keep the social networks that you have up to date, and include a website link to redirect traffic there.
Do More of What Works
It is vital that you track your various marketing efforts and keep notes on what sources work more efficiently than others. Don’t force what isn’t working, and channel your efforts into what is successfully building brand awareness. It may take some time and effort, but the results speak for themselves.