The real estate industry is crowded; everyone these days seems to be a Realtor. So how do you differentiate yourself from other agents? How do you stand out, get people to notice you, like you and use your services? In this article, I’ll outline how to do just that.
1. Send out a monthly e-newsletter and direct mail. You’ll want to send a monthly e-newsletter to all of your clients. Why? So you can keep in touch over time, build on your relationships, stay top of mind, and position yourself as an expert in your field. A good real estate CRM will include a professionally designed and written real estate newsletter that will be automatically emailed out for you every month.
Direct mail, because it can be costly, should be sent to only your best clients. Figure out who makes up your “A-List” (those who bring you the most business, who you enjoy working with the most, and/or who are most likely to refer you), and then give the people in this list a little bit more “TLC.”
Make sure you contact your A-List consistently over time. Don’t take your relationships for granted, and always work to make them stronger. Relationship-building is the cornerstone of real estate sales and is the building block to creating a referrals-based business.
2. Plan events and get involved with sponsorship. Use your real estate CRM to plan and schedule events like client appreciation nights, home expert seminars, new buyer seminars, and wine and cheese parties.
I particularly like home expert seminars, which is when you invite a “home expert,” such as an interior designer or hardwood flooring specialist, to speak at an event you’ve invited your clients and prospects to. The “home expert” you choose will likely be more than happy to talk at your event because it’s a great way for them to get new clients. And the people you invite will love these seminars and remember you for putting them on – just what you want.
Quick tip: use your real estate CRM to schedule all of your events and plan each step involved in making them happen. This way, you can get alerts and reminders at the appropriate times so you stay organized and in-control.
It’s also a great idea to sponsor teams, clubs or organizations you know your clients are involved with. This is one way to get your name circulating within your community and spread positive word-of-mouth
3. Master email marketing. Understand email marketing best practices. For Realtors, I believe an important best practice is to set up all of your leads on drip marketing campaigns.
A drip marketing campaign is a specific email marketing campaign whereby targeted emails get sent out automatically from your real estate CRM at different time intervals. A good CRM will have campaigns created for you for virtually every type of lead, such as a for-sale-by-owner lead, a first-time buyer currently renting lead, a potential seller and more.
There are a number of online resources on the “do’s and don’t’s” of email marketing. When email marketing is done the right way (and when it’s supplemented by other forms of marketing and keep-in-touch activities), it can be tremendously beneficial in terms of staying top of mind and getting leads to convert into clients.
Matthew Collis is part of the Sales and Marketing Team at IXACT Contact Solutions Inc., a leading North American real estate CRM firm. In addition to overseeing many of IXACT Contact’s key sales and marketing programs, Collis works with REALTORS to help them achieve their goals through effective contact management and relationship marketing. IXACT Contact is a Web-based real estate contact management and marketing system designed to help Realtors get more referrals and manage the transaction side of their business.