Spam prevention
Thomas J. Nelson, Realtor, ePRO, CRS, RCS-D
Big Block Realty 858.232.8722 - La Jolla, CA
& Host of Postcards From Success Podcast

Prospecting:  (seeking with purpose & plan) proactive communication- calls, notes, meals & pop-bys-voice to voice, belly to belly communication with potential clients from your database and network. To some degree, handing out business cards-it implies you are "belly to belly", for example at a networking event or meeting.

Marketing: (hoping-still required: with purpose & plan ) passive communication- Mailers, e-blast, e-reports, flyers & post cards, social media, websites and blogging here on active rain, etc. Demonstrating your competence & character through some sort of print or virtual media. Hoping it connects with "right place, right time" prospects.


You need to do both, but rely on neither on it's own.

 It's called the "stacking effect".


Good advice also offered by Annette Lawrence , Palm Harbor, FL 727-420-4041 Mike Rock & William Feela so I won't repeat what they said, except to punctuate William: prospecting is done every work day (or you really have not worked that day). You have to think "winter" in the "Summer" and plan ahead for the peaks & valleys.

Oct 13, 2015 01:25 AM
Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

JJ Canull Here's my take on these two words...

Prospecting is wearing your CEO hat - work ON your business, lead generate, add more people to your database. This should be a DAILY habit - at least 5 days/week and block the time for that.

Marketing is wearing your COO hat - Chief Operating Officer - marketing your listings, yourself online and off-line. Put it in your schedule AFTER blocking the time for prospecting.


Oct 13, 2015 02:44 AM
Annette Lawrence , Palm Harbor, FL 727-420-4041
ReMax Realtec Group - Palm Harbor, FL
Making FLORIDA Real Estate EZ

I would suggest you refer to those providing that instruction. We tend to create our own Lexicons when in environments with fuzzy borders.

I would suggest the following definition:

Prospecting - referring to reaching those you have met or responded to you.

Marketing - referring to reaching those you do not know, have not met.

Oct 13, 2015 01:04 AM
William Feela
Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No.

I prospect every day depending on scheduling and opportunity

Oct 13, 2015 12:56 AM
Mike Rock
Complete Design - Granite Bay, CA
Granite Bay Luxury New Construction...For Less

"TOLD" TO DO?? Sounds ominous. I think the difference is semantics. Marketing is getting yourself or your properties out there. Prospecting is perhaps a more targeted approach of selling yourself to an area, a group. The key is to keep at whatever method works best for you.If your new to the business, i suppose a bit of instruction is fine, but last i looked we are independent contractors who do what works for us.

Oct 13, 2015 12:48 AM
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, Keller Williams Fox Cities - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

Whatever your system, the most important thing is to Follow it EVERY week.

Oct 31, 2018 10:41 AM
Inna Ivchenko
Barcode Properties - Encino, CA
Realtor® • Green • GRI • HAFA • PSC Calabasas CA

Monday and Tuesday are good to follow up after open house, but any day is a good day for prospecting. 

Nov 09, 2017 10:27 PM
Evelyn Johnston
Friends & Neighbors Real Estate - Elkhart, IN
The People You Know, Like and Trust!

Prospecting is looking for new business and marketing is about the business you already have.

Oct 13, 2015 10:53 AM
Mark Don McInnes, Sandpoint
Sandpoint, ID
North Idaho Real Estate - 208-255.6227

Belly to Belly with the prospecting.  Marketing is a non one on one,  meant to get you to the one on one.  Mark

Oct 13, 2015 07:27 AM
Tony Lewis
RE/MAX of Valencia (Hall of Fame) 30 year Valencia Resident - Valencia, CA
RE/MAX Valencia, Stevenson Ranch, Santa Clarita

Prospecting is creating business, where as marketing is promoting business you already have.

Oct 13, 2015 07:20 AM
Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

To me the difference would be that marketing involves selling your services to the general public where prospecting is attempting to sell yourself to specific individuals.

Oct 13, 2015 04:24 AM
Thomas Araujo
Remax Real Estate - Allentown, PA

Think of it from a military perspective. Prospecting could be related to the ground units, also known as the infantry. it's tough, sometimes dirty but in the end very necessary. Especially to protect your business from shifting markets.


Marketing can be related to an Air campaign, also very necessary, not as much direct contact and can get pretty costly. 


Both are very important.

If you are a newer agent i would recommend sticking to prospecting until you make some cash then take a portion of what you make and reinvest steadily back into the business.


If you ever have any questions on prospecting feel free to contact me.

Oct 13, 2015 04:18 AM
Stefan Winter
Real Estate in IL & NV | Owner of Real Estate Web Tech | Daily Vlogger - Las Vegas, NV
Owner - Winter Group & Real Estate Web Tech

Prospecting you are actively calling people trying to get business and appointments set right now. Marketing you are working on social media, websites etc to get people to call you over time.

Oct 13, 2015 04:00 AM
Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers
BVO Luxury Group @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty - Scottsdale, AZ
Serving Scottsdale, Phoenix and Maricopa County AZ

You get better results from prospecting! 

Oct 13, 2015 03:35 AM
Kevin J. May
Florida Supreme Realty - Hobe Sound, FL
Serving the Treasure & Paradise Coasts of Florida

Prospecting is when you're reaching out to customers and marketing is when you're trying to get them to reach out to you.

Oct 13, 2015 03:27 AM
Gary L. Waters Broker Associate, Bucci Realty
Bucci Realty, Inc. - Melbourne, FL
Fifteen Years Experience in Brevard County

I do it all every day and use a block schedule so it is routine and continuous.  Some days there is more prospecting and other days marketing takes the majority of my effort. 

Oct 13, 2015 01:36 AM