Every time I talk to someone about my business and career, it always arises that “they’ve thought about getting into property” or know someone who has. With so many people thinking about getting into property, and getting into real estate – why aren’t there more successful Realtors on the globe? Well, there’s only so much business to go around, so there can only just be so many REALTORS in the world. Personally i think, however, that the inherent nature of the business enterprise, and how different it really is from traditional careers, helps it be difficult for the average indivdual to successfully make the transition in to the Real Estate Business. As a Broker, I see many new agents make their way into my office – for an interview, and sometimes to begin their careers. New Real Estate Agents bring plenty of great qualities to the table – lots of energy and ambition – but they also make a lot of common mistakes. Here are marketing tips for realtors Make.
1) No Business Plan or Business Strategy
So many new agents put almost all their emphasis on which Real Estate Brokerage they’ll join when their shiny new license will come in the mail. Why? Because most new REALTORS have never experienced business for themselves – they’ve only worked as employees. They, mistakenly, think that getting into the Real Estate business is “getting a new job.” What they’re missing is that they’re about to get into business for themselves. If you’ve ever opened the doors to ANY business, you understand that one of many key ingredients is your business plan. Your business plan helps you define where you’re going, how you are getting there, and what it does take for you to make your real estate business a success. Here are the essentials of any good business plan:
A) Goals – What do you want? Make sure they are clear, concise, measurable, and achievable.
B) Services You Provide – you don’t want to be the “jack of most trades & master of none” – choose residential or commercial, buyers/sellers/renters, and what area(s) you would like to specialize in. New residential realtors tend to have the most success with buyers/renters and then move on to listing homes after they’ve completed several transactions.
C) Market – that are you marketing yourself to?
D) Budget – consider yourself “new agent, inc.” and jot down EVERY expense that you have – gas, groceries, cellular phone, etc… Then write down the new expenses you’re dealing with – board dues, increased gas, increased cell usage, marketing (essential), etc…
E) Funding – how will you pay for your budget w/ no income for the first (at the very least) 60 days? With the goals you’ve set on your own, when will you break even?
F) Marketing Plan – how will you obtain the word out about your services? The simplest way to market yourself is to your personal sphere of influence (people you know). Make sure you achieve this effectively and systematically.
2) Not Using the Best Possible Closing Team
They say the best businesspeople surround themselves with people that are smarter than themselves. It takes a pretty big team to close a transaction – Buyer’s Agent, Listing Agent, Lender, Insurance Agent, Title Officer, Inspector, Appraiser, and sometimes more! As an agent, you are in the positioning to refer your client to whoever you choose, and you should be sure that anyone you refer in will be an asset to the transaction, not a person who will bring you more headache. And the closing team you refer in, or “put your name to,” is there to make you shine! When they perform well, you can take part of the credit as you referred them in to the transaction.
The deadliest duo out there is the New Real Estate Agent & New LARGE FINANCIAL COMPANY. They gather and decide that, through their combined marketing efforts, they are able to take over the world! They’re both focusing on the proper section of their business – marketing – but they’re doing each other no favors by choosing to give each other business. In the event that you refer in a bad insurance professional, it might result in a minor hiccup in the transaction – you create a simple phone call and a fresh agent can bind the house in less than one hour. However, because it typically takes at least two weeks to close a loan, if you use an inexperienced lender, the effect can be disastrous! You may find yourself ready of “begging for a contract extension,” or worse, being denied a contract extension.
An excellent closing team will typically know more than their role in the transaction. Due to this, you can turn in their mind with questions, and they’ll step in (quietly) when they see a potential mistake – since they want to assist you to, and in exchange receive more of your business. Using good, experienced players for the closing team will let you infinitely in conducting business worth MORE business…and best of all, it’s free!
3) Not Arming Themselves with the required Tools
Getting started as an agent is expensive. In Texas, the license alone is an investment that will cost between $700 and $900 (not taking into account the volume of time you’ll invest.) However, you’ll come across even more expenses when you attend arm yourself with the required tools of the trade. And do not fool yourself – they’re necessary – because your competitors are definitely using every tool to greatly help THEM.
A) MLS Access is probably the most expensive necessity you are going to run into. Joining your neighborhood (and state & national, by default) Board of Realtors will allow you to purchase MLS access, and in Austin, Texas, will run around $1000. However, don’t skimp of this type. Getting MLS access is among the most important things you can do. It’s what differentiates us from your own average salesman – we don’t sell homes, we present any of the homes that we supply. With MLS Access, you should have 99% of the virginia homes in your area open to present to your clients.
B) Mobile Phone w/ a Beefy Plan – Nowadays, everyone has a cellular phone. But real estate social media marketing includes a plan that will facilitate the level of use that Real Estate Agents need. Plan on getting at the very least 2000 minutes per month. You want, and need, to be accessible to your clients 24/7 – not just nights and weekends.