First let me wish you the best of luck you are not entering the field in the best of times. However, if you can make it work now....you will be set. I agree you need to focus on an area. How large an area is totally up to you. But, you need to have you name seen as much as possible. Name recognition is what it is all about. Getting your first listing is the hardest thing to do. Mailings work! They may not work the first time around but again it is repetative. The more often you can do it the better the response. Try contacting FSBO's. Lead generators, in my experience, are simply not worth the money.
You need an edge. You need to research the local realtors for the area you are working and find an edge. Something that they are not doing that you can offer. When I first started I sat on the phone and called every FSBO in the area. I called every expired in the area. It was hard but it paid off pretty quickly. What I offered was not only a brochure on the listing but a booklet that I printed for my listings. It started with a front cover page that had a picture of the house and announcing not only the house but myself. Then it went on to have multiple pages of pictures and descriptions, a sheet on extras and highlights, a list from the chamber of commerce on the local businesses, maps, demographics, comps, everything was in this booklet to educate the buyer in making a decision.
Sellers loved it and buyers, believe it or not, called years later for me to list their home and still had the booklet.
If you do not have a listing to make a booklet up on, use your own house. Once you are established you don't need to be as extensive. Lets face it. Doing this is easy with just a few listings but when you average 15-20 lisitngs it is impossible. But, by then your name is known.
This is just an example. But think of an edge. Make yourself different. Make the seller want to and need to list with you.
The other bit of advice for you is not so spend much money on print advertsing. When you are first getting started, you may need to go into one of the magazines (homes and land or the real estate book) again just for the recognition but they do not sell houses.
Persistance will pay off.
Best of Luck,
Linda J Sears
You have to meet people and then hold one of the two spots in their brains for real estate agents, preferably the top spot. One manager I respected calls it call - see - send. Every day call people, see people and send out notes to follow up on the two previous activities.
Knowing the area, the restaurants, schools and other amenities is crucial. In this business you have to sell yourself before you will ever get to sell a piece of real estate and the fastest way to turn a client off is to tell them you can look that up for them. Knowing the area will help you maintain a conversation. And conversation is how you get to know who this person is and what they are looking for. I try to ask as few broker questions as possible. I prefer to keep the conversation casual. After the small talk and niceties, start talking about the property, schools and area amenities. As you talk, be sure to listen. Statements about area schools, will often get comments like "My kids are all in college now." or â€œThat school is why we are looking in this area.â€ Conversation is an art form. It can be hard to not go on and on about the new siding and oversized garage. But try to keep your comments short and to the point. Give the buyer an opportunity tell you what they are looking for and why. If they feel comfortable, buyers will tell you more than you ever wanted to know. If they feel like they are trying out for a quiz show, you wonâ€™t get their real name.
Here is the secret. Never host an open house, without having a CURRENT list of other properties available in the area. I like a three ring binder with MLS sheets for each property. Keep it short. Again focus on homes that you would be proud to show. Contact the listing brokers to find out how the sellers will respond to showings with very short notice. If you can keep the conversation alive long enough to show them your list of available property, I like to call it the inventory book, you just might be able to show them some of the other properties in the neighborhood. The buyer now sees a knowledgeable and prepared professional, not a used car salesman that switched to real estate. The rest is up to you.
I really like this method. It works well and costs next to nothing. It exposes you to potential buyers and even potential sellers in the parts of town where you are most comfortable working. If you host several open houses in a week, the neighbors are going to notice. With any luck they will talk to you directly, not just call the number on the listing brokers sign. But even then, the listing broker would be wise to confess that they were not the broker that held 4 open houses last week. This is a numbers game. You can shake hands with 100 people at the expo hall or the hand of 10 buyers at an open house.
Perry's way to get listings
1. Look around you for any construction dumpster in the driveway of any property.
2. stop car and get out - the most important step and one that 99% of the other realtors won't do.
3. knock on door or just walk in if there is a lot of construction activity
4. ask "who's in charge here"
5. begin discussion of listing the house with whoever is in charge
6. Ask for a time to follow up
7. follow up and compete for business
8. win business
Yeah, its really that easy. I haven't lost to many of those either. The only thing I can think is a bigger identifier of a potential listing is a big sign in the yard that says "realtors - please call me so that you can sell my house"
As an author, I would encourage you to take advantage of the free information on the web to help you create a business plan including my blog, blogofgeese.com.
The best FREE lead generating source is Craigslist.com. I suggest you post your listings there or if you don't have any, post another agents. Be sure to include a URL back to your site and directly to the property. That way, you give people what they want and if they call, they call you.
Second become an avid user of social media. Facebook has been great for me as a DJ and also as a real estate agent. One mistake many people make is they create a fan page and jam their business down peoples throats. Market yourself but also inject your personalioty so people see you are human and not just a business trying to sell something. Believe me people know what you do. As long as you make them smile, provide useful information, and stay connected the business will come.
Most important: once you start your marketing don't abandon it!!!! Another mistake many make, they don't see results in the first month and get discouraged. Stay in it for the long haul and you will see results.
Licensed Associate Broker
Accredited Buyer Representative
GREEN Designated Agent
William Raveis Legends Realty Group
Now to the money question, you can spend lots and lots of money marketing yourself all to no avail. Direct mail works, so does networking and advertising and every other reach out and touch someone method that will be presented you.
The key to it all is consistency and be a bit of an original. Look at the Hobbs Herder program and maybe even attend a two day seminar of theirs. Be prepared to withstand the onslaught of very expensive opportunities they will offer but they have studied this business and have a good program. Another source of basic best practices is Gary Keller's book "The Millionaire Real Estate Agent". He spent time interviewing the best of the best and wrote the book on how they did it.
Times have changed and no one can tell you if those best practices are still the best practices. Another option is to look at an agent in your market and steal every idea they use. If you don't like the word steal then copy their activities and touch system.
Exit Group One Realty
Market yourself not the company you work for. Direct mail works but takes time up to 18 mos. of consistent mailings to the same addresses. It is expensive. Lead generators also work but many are not interested in purchasing "right now." To generate leads immediately - speak to people you know everyday consistently. Ask them who they know who might be interested in buying or selling and using your services. This people know you and know you will do a good job. As your business expands and your reputation increases you will receive more and more referrals. Look at the NAR website for business building ideas.
I have been a member of HomeGain for awhile. I'm not sure that I would recommend it. However, everytime I decide to let it go I get something! Go figure...
If you would like to respond to me personally maybe we can talk. Does your broker offer help in marketing as far as training?
Hang in there - be consistent and make it happen!