The reason why 87% of agents fail within five years is because most of them start in real estate chasing the wrong people with NO real estate marketing strategy. Everything you are about to read is not rocket science, but common sense when it comes to real estate marketing vs. advertising. My goal is that you will learn how important it is to immediately establish an ongoing real estate marketing strategy. Creating real estate content creates top of mind brand awareness or what Gary V. would call “Attention”.
Prospecting For Real Estate Business Is Difficult
I recall as a brand new agent in 2002, cold calling my first six months because I was told to prospect, prospect, prospect instead of how to market my own brand.
One of the first lessons I learned my first year in business as a real estate agent was that prospecting through cold calling or other “old school” sales tactics was unsustainable for me. I was getting burned out fast, but that didn’t mean I couldn’t make it in real estate, it just meant I had to find another way.
You don’t get referrals or business from strangers, you get them from people you know. The key is staying on top of mind when a referral opportunity arises.
Let me ask you a question….
If nearly 61% of business is generated from referrals and repeat clients, what should be your most important real estate marketing strategy?
- Facebook ads?
- Buying Zillow leads?
- Cold calling FSBO’s or expired listings?
- Direct mail farming?
- Door knocking?
These are all great ways to prospect new business, but it’s a fact that over 80% of a real estate agent’s business comes from referrals, repeat clients, people you already know, or run into?
If I were to open up a taco stand in San Diego and I found out that roughly 80%+ of my customer base were from a certain area or demographic, what should be the first thing I do? I would focus the majority of my marketing efforts to that specific group of people. I would first determine how I could reach them so they know I’m open for business.
Over 80% of business comes from people you know, worked with in past, are referred to, or personally meet! These aren’t statistics created by me, these are facts reported from NAR. A real estate agent who is not marketing their relationships is like me opening up my taco stand without putting a sign in the window saying I sell tacos.
What real estate marketing strategy keeps you in front of people WITHOUT always having to talk about buying or selling real estate? You create content.
What Do I Do First?
Many real estate agents rely on chasing leads vs. creating and maintaining relationships that produce referrals and repeat business. We are told to believe that we should be prospecting vs. marketing and building a brand. Prospecting strategies are great, but they should come secondary to setting up a system that generates referrals and repeat business.
I am talking about farming your relationships with content in multiple channels, so let me explain.
We all know direct mail farming works. It’s been a real estate marketing strategy since the dinosaurs ruled the world. You pick a neighborhood and then consistently mail it over a period of time. After about 6 months or so you should start seeing some results(if not sooner). The longer you maintain a presence and build a brand in your farm area, the better the results over time. The reason this takes time to build is because it takes a while for people to remember who you are. Over time, direct mail farming creates top of mind brand awareness.
So if direct mail farming a bunch of strangers still works, imagine if you started farming your relationships?
Why Your Real Estate Marketing Needs To Be Put In Front Of Your Relationships
You must market your relationships because when you are out of sight, you are out of mind. Trust me, people don’t remember what you for a living as much as you would like to believe. Top of mind brand awareness keeps your brand at the forefront, nurtures your relationship with your database, and makes it easier to be remembered when a referral opportunity rises.
What’s The Return On Investment In Marketing Your Database?
This is mathematical marketing, not theory. You can literally get a good estimate on your referral opportunities for the next 12 months simply by determining the size of the audience you are marketing. According to MelissaData, the annual statistics in the United States show that 10-15% of the population moves every year. This includes everyone you know or are connected with through social media or walk past each day.
Marketing your relationships consistently will generate direct business, but that’s not why you should be marketing it primarily.
You market your relationships because 100% of them knows someone who is moving that they can refer you to!
If you were to to “Farm” 100 people over a 12 month period, roughly 10-14% of them are going to be moving this year. If they know you, they are more likely to call you first when they need to buy or sell real estate. Over 80% of homebuyer and sellers hire the first person they speak to.
If I had 200 people I was consistently marketing, roughly 20-28 of them will be moving this year. The best part is that 100% of the people you stay in front of have the ability to refer you at least one client because they all know someone who is moving this year.
The question becomes if they will refer you or not. This is why top of mind awareness is crucial to your business.
You create top of mind brand awareness through creating content consistently through direct mail, video email, and social media.