Broker Associate at LIV | Sotheby’s International Realty based in Breckenridge, Colorado.
In the last few years, we have learned that adapting to ever-changing business practices is essential to remaining relevant and successful in any business. Real estate professionals are no different. Although technology continues to disrupt the way we conduct business, technological advancements are a great tool if utilized correctly. It is also important to focus on the foundations of real estate sales: relationships.
For real estate professionals looking to stand apart from the competition in 2021, these five strategies are key.
1. Creating Systems
Systems are one of the foundations for real estate professionals to grow productivity and not waste time with various basic tasks so they can actually focus on selling real estate. Basic systems include setting property searches for clients, having a follow-up procedure, using checklists and many more. In reality, there should be a system for just about every task in the real estate process.
Systems can be manually triggered or automated. The more automation we can leverage, the more free time we have to focus on other tasks.
2. Automation And Re-Automation
Automating the business process is the ultimate tool to work fewer hours and work smarter. For example, hiring a marketing company to compose, print and ship a market report to a specific community on a monthly basis is an automation that is likely to save time and produce income in the long run.
Another fundamental tool for a real estate professional is a customer relationship management (CRM) system. A simple Excel sheet does not really offer automation. Investing in a powerful CRM with high automation on drip campaigns, property searches, call-to-action items and notification when attention is required is almost a guaranteed return on the investment.
Unfortunately, automation is not something that will last a lifetime. It will require tweaks, adjustment and adaptation to the evolving business practices. Checking the automation every few months is a good idea to ensure processes aren’t leading to a dead end.
3. Local Leadership Involvement
Today more than ever, as many aspects of people’s lives have been forced into the digital space, creating an in-person connection is key. One great way for real estate professionals to connect with the community and meet new people is to get involved with local leadership positions. For example, a real estate leader could run for chair of the Planning and Zoning Commission. The opportunities are endless; however, it is important to make sure your desire to get involved is genuine.
4. Partner With Local Businesses
Word of mouth is one of the oldest ways to do business. This is why connecting with local businesses is an important key to succeeding in the community and ultimately in our businesses.
As you are partnering with local businesses, think outside the box, and reverse the situation as if someone was to ask you for your business. Distributing business cards and simply asking for referrals is not going to cut it. What would you like to receive? What would make you want to recommend someone to your business?
Creating a custom marketing brochure is a good starting point. Keep it slick and simple, and include information about yourself, such as how you sell homes differently and how you are linked with the community. Make it personal for the target audience.
Any marketing material is best paired with a personal touch. For example, bring a basket of goodies such as wine, chocolates and maybe even some products you purchased at a local shop.
Once both parties have an interest in a partnership, offer to leave your marketing brochure, business cards or any marketing collateral you created to distribute if anyone asks for a local real estate professional. Make sure to get a clear message across: You will take care of their referral.
Strategic local partnership potential can be found in local businesses including:
• Flower shops.
• Wine stores.
• Clothing stores.
• Art galleries.
• Home cleaning services.
• Coffee shops.
• Home renal companies.
When building business partnerships, it is important to remember that such partnerships are also relationships that will need to be nurtured. Create calendar reminders to come back and see your partners on a regular basis. A genuine relationship is much more likely to translate into long-lasting business.
5. The Next Generation Of Video
With all the new technological advancements, video advertisements are essential tools for marketing plans in any business. While video is not a new technology, many still struggle to create valuable content or even use the technology at all. In the years ahead, it will be difficult for real estate professionals to stay competitive and relevant without offering advanced video marketing. Those who spent the last few years practicing and developing marketing plans with expensive video quality will be a cut above.
Three essential questions while creating real estate video are:
• Who is our target audience?
• How can we get the message across to our target audience?
• Is our content valuable?
Creating an avatar is one of the most fundamental pieces of a marketing strategy. A real estate professional should have in-depth local knowledge and understand who is buying properties and where the consumers are coming from. With such understanding, creating relevant video content will be easier and likelier to be relevant.
Some of the most effective videos I’ve seen included a human presence to create an emotional connection. For example, while filming a property listing, actors enacting daily life in the property help demonstrate what a prospective buyer is looking for.
Video does not just refer to listing videos. There are various options such as local business reviews, neighborhood reviews, about me, client and peer interviews, case studies, market updates, livestreams, events, listing presentations and more. Last but not least, it is all about quality. Hire a professional who offers ultra HD video. Today, almost everyone has a mobile device with an ultra HD screen. Quality will make your content stand out.
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