Marketing Your New Real Estate Business
Getting started as a new real estate agent can be very exciting, yet at the same time very scary. The amount of information obtained during pre-licensing can be overwhelming, but the most frustrating thing is to realize that most of the information you are taught, and tested on, in a pre-licensing course, is not going to be utilized when you get into the market as an agent.
One of the many things missing from pre-licensing courses is how tomarket your new real estate business. You see, now that you are real estate agent, you are a new business owner. Many agents do not realize, or understand, this concept. They believe that all they have to do is get their license, join a real estate firm, and the business will be handed to them.
The fact of the matter is that real estate agents are independent contractors, and NOT employees. This means that as a real estate agent, you are responsible for running your own business, marketing your own business, and obtaining your own leads.
What's A New Agent To Do?
I remember starting out as a new real estate agent. Of course, in 1998, marketing was done a bit differently. I was all too eager to sit for "desk duty", thinking that surely I would start getting a lot of clients to work with by answering the calls coming in.
I spent a lot of time answering calls that came in for other agents, making showing appointments, and not getting much in the way of real leads for MY business. Oh, there were the occasional looky-loos and tire kickers, but it seemed like the random calls that would come in were not the serious leads that I needed.
In the office that I started in, there were two agents on duty at all times, so the calls would be alternated between two of us. IF you were the lucky agent to be "up" at the time a lead called, then you'd get to work with them. This type of model just wasn't working for me.
Before becoming a real estate agent, I had worked as a web designer. I thought about what I had done for other businesses before starting my new adventure, and I decided to create a website for my new business. I became the first agent in my market to have a full website. As you can imagine, this started driving in business for me. Back then, just having an online presence gave you a great edge over other agents.
As my business grew, and I started to target new construction as a niche, my website provided a wealth of new leads. About 3 years into my career, I started refusing "desk duty" because I had a steady stream of clients coming from my online endeavors. I didn't need to waste a few hours of my valuable time taking calls and making appointments for other agents in my office, with the hopes of grabbing a lead or two.
But online marketing has changed drastically over the past 5 years. It's no longer good enough just to have a website. You now have to have a system in place that will attract leads, draw them in to YOUR site, and then convert them into clients.
Help Getting Started
Don't be fooled by companies that want to sell you flashy real estate websites that have a lot of bells and whistles. The problem with these sites is that they are designed by graphic/web designers, and NOT marketers. Having a flashy website is NOT what is going to bring prospects in to your marketing funnel! Your site must be optimized for search engine placement, and has to be directly targeted to your niche. There are many factors that make for a quality, lead generating, real estate site.
Over the course of my career, I have developed a system that I have used to create my sites and get them ranked in the search engines. Your site should be niche targeted, and have a direct response system in place to capture leads, develop a relationship and foster trust with them, and convert them to clients you can close.
Many real estate agents and brokers are stuck in the old way of doing things. They haven't adapted to today's technology, and a lot of them are going to be lost and out of business in years to come. Old-school techniques like cold-calling, door-knocking, newspaper ads, etc, just don't drive the traffic that they use to, and are a huge waste of valuable time and money today.
You need to have an online marketing strategy to be in front of prospects from the time they start their search for a home, which 90% of the time is online.
12 Steps to Launching Your Real Estate Business
Marketing your new real estate business is not as difficult as you might think. The trick is to narrow down your focus to one specific niche, center your advertising on that niche, create a lead-generating site online to drive traffic for that niche, and provide something of value for your audience, in order to set yourself apart from your competition.
Even a brand new real estate agent can compete with top producers, with the right marketing strategy.
If you're interested in finding out what you need to do to get started, watch the first part of my free video, to see the "12 Steps to Launching Your Real Estate Business".