When one decides to start in real estate, their family and friends are typically ready to support them in their new venture by connecting with the new agent to help buy or sell. But, how does a new agent connect with locals in their area beyond friends and family? How does a new agent claim a territory?
Create New Content
"Been there, done that." Many agents approach new business ideas with this mentality, stating that someone, somewhere has already thought of it — but, that leaves so much room for redesigning the proven. There are countless ways to create a new brand opportunity. Take a moment to research, try something new and achieve it in your area.
Good: Send out social media posts to advertise properties in the area for sale. Even if you're a new agent with no listings, there are ways to let people know you are working aside from clicking “share.” For instance, creating a flyer from professional photos taken, creating video slideshows of a home’s features or doing a Facebook Live video in a home are all ways to highlight that you are a new agent in the business without having your own opportunities immediately.
Better: Work with the company marketing department to create proximity indicators. It may sound odd, but a consumer moving to an area would love to know how far away a grocery store is located, or if a hospital is nearby. The more proximity indicators that can be highlighted, the better luck you may have in selling a property.
Best: Create relationships with local shops, vendors or businesses in the area, and film a quick video introducing the owners and highlighting the business. This makes opportunities to connect with people across social media, raise awareness of this local business and establish appreciation for your work in the community. As you continue to do this, your online followers are likely to come to see you as a powerhouse of deals and relationships, which helps build a rapport more quickly.
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Create Lead Opportunities
Internet leads are great opportunities for new agents to build their businesses. What’s easier than showing someone a home they already found and liked online? The amount of time you spend showing many properties will decrease as the buyer searches online and then calls you to see a home of interest. Time is money — this truly is a great benefit.
Good: Understand what’s coming on and off the market each day. Most MLS systems allow agents to search based on new inventory daily. Learn the types of homes that appear in each area, and study them. As you become a more skilled agent, choose a zip code on one of the major real estate sites that corresponds with the inventory being seen in the daily market updates. By choosing a zip code based on volume of inventory coming on market daily within an area, more lead opportunities will likely be created.
Better: If a new home comes on the market in an area listed by an agent in your firm, be the first to host an open house to buyers. Sell potential buyers on the great features of the home, and why the neighborhood is so welcoming and well-suited for the buyer’s needs. Become a true market expert by knowing the surrounding sales for the past six months, as well as the homes currently on the market. Make the client feel as though you are the local expert. Plus, remember there are no referral fees on buyers who walk in.
Best: Internet leads come in territories. You can claim an area by a zip code, as it may be far easier to be more familiar with a neighborhood than a city. Learn the neighborhoods in a zip code by driving through them often. Meet the neighbors, tour vacant properties and get a feel for the area. While volume of leads is important, even more important is knowing if a buyer’s needs can be even better met in another area based on their criteria. The more an agent can utilize all these lead methods, the better salesperson they will become.
Learn The Neighborhoods
Good: Shadow experienced agents as they show in these territories. Learning sales methods from a variety of agents allows you to build your own method to become a better salesperson.
Better: Attend all the local farmers markets and community events you can. Handing out a 15-cent business card is the best marketing available — most people are excited to attend the event, and happy to see someone who serves (and knows) the community doing so. Elevator pitches about how you're a great agent to work with are great to have prepared.
Best: Visit the local coffee shop to learn the neighborhood culture, especially in the mornings. I live in one of the more diverse cities in our area, which features retirement communities, single-family home communities, suburban communities and townhomes or condo associations. Every neighborhood has something completely different to offer, and by knowing the amenities and benefits of each, and making recommendations based on that, selling to clients becomes a much easier task as you become better informed.
Claiming your territory isn’t always easy in real estate, but it can be achieved. It doesn’t matter your age, background, education level or connections — each agent has an equal opportunity when stepping into the real estate business. So, claim your territory, and become the best agent you can be.