With over 1.1 million members in the National Association of Realtors, competition for real estate business is fierce. What’s a realtor to do when trying to build their business in this type of crowded marketplace? The short answer is stand out from the crowd. How do you that? Through marketing and top-notch service to your clients.
Make sure your online presence is strong
Studies show that 92% of buyers use the internet to begin their new home search. Gone are the days where clients had to call the realtor to access the MLS listing. Now anyone and everyone can log onto their computer or mobile device, click on one of many home search engines and start looking at properties before they ever contact a realtor.
Online marketing accounts for one of the biggest parts of your marketing strategy. You should have a professional profile set up on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn at a minimum. On your social media sites share all of your listings, as well as helpful information for potential clients. Sharing articles of interest related to real estate and home improvement is a great strategy that will keep you showing up in your follower’s feeds. Your social media profiles and posts can also link back to your website.
Your website should be professionally set up. In most cases, the realty company that you work with will provide you with a professional website. In the rare case that you work for a small firm that doesn’t provide this, you need to make the financial investment to have someone set up a professional website for you. Do not try to shortcut this. Anything less than a professional online image will send potential clients to another realtor in a matter of seconds.
Only use professional photography
When using photography either for your own marketing as a realtor or for listing homes, it’s important only to use a professional real estate photographer.
Clients need to feel confident that you pay attention to detail and that you go above and beyond. Using your iPhone to snap a selfie headshot will not cut it. Today’s consumer can spot doctored images pretty easily. Save yourself the time and trouble and make a great first impression by using a professional real estate photographer, like Northern Virginia Real Estate Photography. Your images will be clear and crisp. The resolution will be high so that it translates well to print material as well as digital marketing. Real estate photographers also know the best way to photograph a home to show off and accentuate its most positive features. Having images of professionally shot homes for your listing shows that you care about your clients, and it gives you a professional image.
All professionals, but especially realtors, have to have business cards to hand out. Get creative with this and do something unique that will help your business stick in people’s minds as they come across others that have real estate needs. If all of your listings in the last year have sold within seven days, highlight that on your business card. Customers and clients want a realtor that they know can get the job done. Having a professional image of one of the homes you’ve sold on the front is a great marketing tool and will help those that you give the card to remember what you do as soon as they see your card. Many realtors utilize business card magnets to keep their information front and center for potential clients.
Use the power of referrals
Referrals can be one of your biggest sources of clients out there. Statistics show that roughly 90% of consumers rely on referrals to find new professional service providers, but only 11% of professionals encourage or ask for referrals. Make sure that all of your marketing material indicates that you work on referrals or that you appreciate referrals from clients. To ensure that your clients are happy to refer you to others you need to do a few things …. Using professional photography in all of your listings elevates your professional images and makes other clients want to work with you.
Create an email marketing list
Email marketing provides the highest return on investment for any marketing method utilized. How do you create an email marketing list? First, you’ll start with those clients that you’ve worked with in the past. These people will be the base for your list. Next, you’ll want to find a way to capture leads going forward. An effective lead capture method can be as simple as putting a signup for your e-news on your website or having a more sophisticated free product offer. Even the most complex of these are fairly simple to set up when you use a service like MailChimp or Constant Contact.
Provide readers information of value
Whether you utilize email marketing (our recommendation) or update your website with a blog post, make sure you’re providing information that can help them and provide value, not sell them on your services. By providing them valuable information, you become a person they trust and will remember when they need real estate services.
Blogging on your website can provide a great return because updating fresh content, especially blog posts that are more than 300 words long boosts your Google ranking and will allow those searching the web to find your site faster and put you ahead of other realtors that are not utilizing this type of marketing.
Some examples of types of information that you can provide on your blog include hyperlocal news and reviews about the town your business is located in, information on home maintenance, security, home improvement, and financial education tips. To give an even bigger boost, you can invite other area businesses to guest post on your blog. Using guest bloggers helps build their audience and your audience. Finding partnerships like this wherever you can, will go a long way towards growing your own business.
You can go a step further with your content and reach out to other bloggers or sites like Medium.com. Working with other websites and business owners you can have articles of interest posted to their sites with links back to yours. This strategy not only builds your Google ranking, but it positions you as a person of authority in your field. Another untapped resource for content marketing is Help A Reporter Out (HARO). Register as a real estate professional on HARO, and when quotes are requested from realtors, you can submit responses and potentially get published on major marketing channels with more links back to your site and further establishing your credibility as an expert in your field.
Use local interests and landmarks in your marketing
Becoming an expert in the area that you work in will elevate your credibility as a realtor. Many of your clients could be moving to the area from another location. To have a real estate agent that can help them connect with the important places and people in their new town is a bonus.
These are just a few of the most important marketing tips for effective real estate marketing. If you’d like to learn more about how Northern Virginia Real Estate Photography can help you with your marketing efforts, contact us today.
Northern Virginia Real Estate Photography