Being a realtor can mean being able to make a lot of money on real estate transactions. However, you need to do two things. First, you need to market yourself so people know who you are and what you do. Second, you need to convince people that are you good at what you do so they hire you.
There are a variety of ways to market yourself as an expert realtor. The smart move is exploring as many of them as you can so you reach out to the most people possible. Having said that, the absolute best move is portraying yourself as an expert in your local real estate market.
Start With Your Sphere of Influence
If you’re not sure how to market yourself as a realtor in the beginning, then start with who you already know. This is known as your sphere of influence in real estate. There are two groups of people to look into:
- Personal Relationships: Friends and family that want to support your career might be willing to use you as their own personal realtor. If not, they might know someone looking for a realtor that they can recommend you to. The benefit for them is getting someone they know and trust, and you get a transaction or two under your belt.
- Professional Colleagues: Realtors that have been in the game for a while already might be looking to burnish their credentials by mentoring other professionals, such as yourself. Also, you might join a realtor group or firm that has clients and listings they can provide you.
Market Yourself Consistently
You never know when you’re going to land your next listing. That’s why you shouldn’t restrict yourself to just marketing yourself when you don’t have any listings. Your marketing efforts should include regular activities all year long, including:
- SEO: Search engine optimization means having a professional website and then taking steps to make sure it ranks high when locals look online for a realtor. Even if late spring and early summer are the high point for real estate transactions in most markets, people looking to buy or sell will be looking for realtors and information every month of the year.
- Direct Mail: Postcards are usually the best bet here. Since they don’t have to be opened, your image and message has a moment of visual attention to make an impact statement.
- Networking Events: Whether it’s networking events trying to connect potential clients with realtors or just meetings between industry professionals, the more people you know, the more leads you can get.
- Hosting Workshops: Consider hosting a quarterly workshop on weekends or evenings where you cover the process of home buying and selling. Offer free attendance and maybe even a freebie for those who attend. Whether you do it in-person, online, or both, you’ll have a chance to display your expertise and make connections with others.
Leverage Both Free and Paid Marketing
How much you’re willing to put into your marketing budget may vary based on how well you’re doing. It’s actually a tough call sometimes, because you might have more money for marketing when you have more transactions, even though this is when you feel like you might need less marketing.
Leveraging both free and paid marketing opportunities at all times means you can move the needle on way or the other based on your circumstances at the time.
Examples of Free Marketing Options
Do enough deals, and hopefully word-of-mouth advertising will spread from your satisfied clients to others who decide to use you as well. Until then, utilize the digital world to get the word out on your own:
- Social Media: Facebook and Instagram are two prominent places to make sure you are featured, but consider LinkedIn and Twitter as well.
- YouTube: If you decide to do those workshops mentioned earlier, record the content and host it on this platform. Regular updates and podcasts go a long way towards building professional credibility.
- Google My Business: Make sure you capture your listing and fill it out before anyone else does.
- Email Newsletter: Getting people to subscribe to a newsletter is a lot easier than signing them as a client. However, if you earn their trust over time, then you can increase your odds with each prospect.
Examples of Paid Marketing
Paying for your marketing has the downside of costing money but the upside of higher potential for results:
- Google Ads: These are good to run when your SEO efforts haven’t had time to pay off yet. These appear above the organic search results. Also, you can run a PPC campaign when you need to drum up business and then turn it off when you’re doing okay.
- Joining Professional Organizations: Membership in professional organizations helps you convince locals that you are a member of the community and not someone new to the area. Local knowledge is something people love to see in realtors, so look into your local Chamber of Commerce, realtor associations, and the like.
- Social Media Ads: These should include video and photo content. They will help you reach out to social media users who aren’t following you already.
Two Bonus Ideas
If you really want to know how to market yourself as a realtor, then borrow or steal these ideas from successful professionals already making it big in your field:
- Host Open Houses: Whenever you have one client trying to sell a home, host open houses for people to look around the property. Your top priority is always selling that home, but you’ll also have a chance to connect with potential buyers who need a realtor of their own.
- Target Apartment Complexes: Whether it’s your workshops or direct mail, anytime you target a place with lots of renters, you’re targeting a group that has lots of people dreaming of owning a home some day.
It’s not enough to just be an expert realtor. You have to convince others that you’re an industry authority. Never stop marketing, and use both paid and free advertising for a balanced approach.