By Rick Brown
Fact: Market fluctuations are faced by all real estate professionals.
Fact: 20% of all real estate agents generate over 80% of all income
Fact: 62% of all Sellers use the first agent they call.
Fact: Only 12% of Sellers use a Realtor they’ve used before.
Fact: Virtually all top Producing Real Estate agents have utilized or currently utilize direct marketing as one of their main methods of producing more leads, listings and sales.
For the most part, people think “All Realtors are pretty much the same.” With all of these facts and if people really think that all realtors are the same, how are you going to differentiate yourself and become a top producer?
Since we receive over 100,000 calls per year and with over 30,000 successful realtors using the ReaMark direct marketing programs, we are experts in understanding what is working and what is not working. The first commonality amongst top producers is:
You Must Have a Marketing Plan to be Successful
This means you’ve got to prospect for new clients as well as maintain your current client base. Successful realtors get over 70% of their new business from referrals. Wow! let me repeat that: Successful realtors get over 70% of their new business from referrals.
But how can that be if it is a fact that only 12% of sellers will use the same realtor they used before? The answer is simple, obviously successful realtors have a higher percentage of repeat customers and referrals than the average.
Top Strategies of Real Estate Agents
The overriding key to success is to developing a personal list of people to become your referral base. This list should include anyone who knows you including past clients, friends, neighbors, school teachers, old business acquaintances, your kids friends parents, your fellow church members, etc. Again anyone who knows you and could act as a referral. Your list may start off small, as few as 100 people, you goal is to develop this list and grow it to its maximum size. Most successful realtors have at least 400 or more people on this list.
Once you have developed your personal list you should be in contact with these people at least once a month before spending any money on farming and prospecting. These contacts should include the following:
1) Mail monthly at least one of the following marketing communication pieces: a postcard, newsletter, greeting card, or a calendar.
2) You should always mail your personal list all Just Listed and Just Sold properties that you are involved in. Announce your success and you will be sure to get referrals.
3) You should mention somewhere on most pieces that you rely on referrals and that their referrals are greatly appreciated.
Most successful agents will have a marketing plan that incorporate the following:
- New Years Card / Newsletter
- Spring Time Change Card / Newsletter
- 4th of July Card / Newsletter
- Fall Time Change Card / Newsletter
- Thanksgiving Card / Newsletter
- Holiday Card/ Newsletter
- Calendar usually sent out between August and December
- All Just Listed and Just Sold announcements
Most of our successful agents utilize the following products to mail to their client base:
Recipe Cards, Newsletters, Home Tips, Cartoon, Animal, Scenic, Recipe Calendars
Football & Baseball schedules, School Calendars, Monthly selections, Full magnet calendars, etc.
Again, in direct marketing your success is based upon:
- 40% is the list you mail
- 30% is the frequency you mail
- 30% is the marketing piece.
How to Farm successfully
Once you have established an ongoing consistent mailing to your personal list then you have to have means to build that list through farming and prospecting. Over two thirds of all top performers use a territorial or geographic farm.
Going back to the formula of direct marketing success, the most important aspect is the list you select. So choosing your farm should be based upon the following:
1) Look for an area with and higher than a 8% turnover rate
2) Make sure that there is not a dominate realtor or real estate company with more than 75% of the listings.
Once you have selected your farm, YOUR GOAL IS TO BECOME THE REAL ESTATE SPECIALIST IN THAT FARM.
You should again be in contact with each household at least 8 times per year. Again you can utilize these key dates listed above and if possible you should try to walk your farm (Deliver calendars, free gifts, etc) twice per year.
Other ideas could include:
a) Advertising in the neighborhood newsletter. (If you do not have one develop one and get key local businesses to offset all or the majority of cost.
b) Advertise the neighborhood activates such as: firework locations, school dates, neighborhood history facts, home market updates, free flag or pumpkin giveaways, charity events, etc.
Again these are just some of the more common characteristics of successful agents, for more ideas please contact ReaMark and we will help you develop and customize a personal marketing plan to fit your budget, lifestyle and goals.
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