Career Coach: marketing yourself as a brand

Below is an excerpt from the new edition of the firsttuesday Career Manual, a best practices guide to help new real estate licensees establish their personal brands and increase their income.

Whether you are a seasoned real estate professional or a freshman licensee, you need to develop your brand. Branding is a crucial step in a career in order to acquire and retain customers. A brand’s aura defines who you are and what you do. Here are the steps you can take to choose and implement your real estate brand – and hone a professional personality.

Step 1: Choose your brand

In the real estate profession, Picture is everything. How prospective clients and colleagues see you determines whether they want to hire you or work with you – and what they will remember about you if they or someone you know are considering hiring a real estate agent.

To market yourself, your approach is to stand out from other agents in your community. However, don’t be specific enough to limit the services you provide or choose a segment of the market as your specialty that is not economically effective to meet your financial goals. For example, for a limited number of short-term clients active after a business recession, simply calling themselves a “Distressed Property Expert” is great, but not for long-term clients.

One direct way to build persistence into your practice is to become the Neighborhood expert. This works for buyers and sellers of all types of homes in every neighborhood. It also easily adjusts to the prices and clientele for each neighborhood in which you market your services FARM YARD.

If you qualify as a short sales expert, mention this as one of your specialties as a neighborhood expert too. miscellaneous Residential specializations to mention are:

  • Laying;
  • Veterans Affairs (VA) Guaranteed Mortgage;
  • Federal Housing Administration (FHA) -insured mortgage;
  • military friendly;
  • First time home buyers;
  • bilingual or multilingual and indication of the language (s);
  • Condominiums or apartment buildings;
  • Luxury homes;
  • affordable housing;
  • Country;
  • Investment property;
  • energy efficient or green houses; and
  • Seniors live.

See what other agents in your office are doing to promote themselves. Classify each of them based on the area and type of property they mainly work on. Also note the expertise they have established as their real estate services brand. Ask yourself what There is no specialization from the neighborhood that you want to cultivate?

It takes time to collect this data. But your use of a spreadsheet and analysis of the behavior of others leads you to planning and implementation decisions that will generate more customers and fees in the future.

In the end, be honest about yourself as you develop your brand. If you have never worked with seniors, it is not useful to present yourself as a senior living specialist.

Another dubious situation is that photo Use them with your branded materials. One major annoyance with real estate agents is that the photos they use are often a headshot taken years ago, before weight and style changed their appearance. If you are using your picture in marketing collateral, get a professional photo taken every two or three years. It avoids the inconvenience or confusion when a prospect meets with you.

Step 2: Consider (or reconsider) a catchy tagline

You want customers Remember your name in a positive sense. You don’t want them to roll their eyes when mentioned.

Stay away from terrifying slogans, especially political, religious, or elitist slogans as they are generally inappropriate and, from the point of view of some customers, can express a bias. Generally, even if you think a tagline is wise, most customers are not astute enough to consider it wise. You also want to make sure that the pictures or graphics you use to represent your business are family friendly.

That said, if you have a catchy tagline, this is it funny, harmless, and helps customers remember your name, then do it. This also works well if you don’t already have a specialty. In this case, you are informing potential customers of another benefit they will have in working with you.

Pick a descriptive personal trait that you want to highlight as yours, such as: B. capable, supportive or reliable.

If you brand yourself and your services as a company, don’t be generic. They must be different from all other licensees. Don’t use words like: integrity, honest, trustworthy, or godly. They formulate the characteristics of your branding to showcase your specific talents and unique personality traits. Start by adding your name to the tagline: “Billy Brown, the Informed Agent.”

Better yet, rhyme it so that your potential customers can easily remember you: “Don’t make clowns, sell it quick with Billy Brown.”

You can also use your tagline to highlight your property specialty: “Mary Williams, The South Bakersfield Expert” or “Selling South Bakersfield since 1998”.

Step 3: Market your brand

Now you have it perfect brand for your serviceshow do you introduce yourself and attract more customers? First of all, you flow with your brand into all forms of marketing, including yours:

  • Agent website;
  • professional email signature;
  • Business cards;
  • FARM materials that you hand in while you knock on the door in the neighborhood
  • Signs or billboards; and
  • Marketing materials sent in the mail that you send to past and prospects.

If you specialize in multiple types of real estate transactions, order different business cards for each specialty. In this way, when you meet someone who wants to buy their first home, you can give them the business card “The specialist for first time buyers”.

You can also hand over your “Housing Specialist” card when talking to an investor who wants to sell or buy residential property.

Determine the duration for the implementation of your branding strategy. Be consistent in your presentation and keep in mind that it can take up to a year or more to notice an effect. In order to have staying power, allow time in your schedule and money in your budget to market yourself to your FARM community for a period of several months. An advertising shot on the entire marketplace is not enough.

As a newcomer to real estate marketing, it takes around two years for marketing your brand to pay off with a reliable stream of customers. It takes time for a worthwhile activity to become known to a sufficient number of people to produce meaningful results.

On the other hand, if you change your brand to meet an increasing demand for other real estate services in the community and you already have a list of your previous clients, the results will come in much sooner.

Also, remember to invest in a pair Out-of-the-box marketing strategies. For example, you can become a “local real estate agent” by sponsoring a stretch of motorway, volunteering as a sponsor of a local youth sports team or sitting on a citizens’ committee. Your sincerity and community service become an unspoken but promoted part of your brand – not to mention the opportunities that arise when you meet prospects while engaging with fellow community volunteers.

Step 4: Common mistakes to avoid

Once you’ve nailed your branding image and marketing strategy, give your material one look for common mistakes before you implement it. Once you’ve built a brand, it’s difficult (and potentially costly) to change, especially if you’ve made a less positive impression on your community – so get it right the first time.

Avoid:

  • Use all capital letters to describe yourself or your services – it seems bold and insincere, more like a used car salesman than the educated usage of a credible professional;
  • Spelling or grammatical errors – This leaves you either looking unintelligent or unable to pay attention to details, traits that clients do not want from their real estate agent; and
  • to give up on your branding strategy after just a few months of marketing, as it takes about two years for the payback to be measurable and consistent.