1. The first step is to create a website where current and prospective clients can go to learn more about you, your success and the services you offer.  Let your clients learn about you and your services, this is a great place for the client to get to know you and confirm they made the right choice by selecting you to be their realtor.                

Your site should provide:

  • A great bio showcasing your skills, accomplishments, affiliations, goals and personality is the cornerstone of a great website! This is where you get to set the tone, so take advantage of it!
  • Helpful information for buyers and sellers – From first-time home buyers to the savvy investor; you’ve got access to and should provide valuable content to reach your target audience.
  • An MLS property search feature with saved-search and email capability
  • Town info like schools, restaurants, culture, nightlife, activities, etc.
  • Social Media is changing the way we do business!
  • Blog – Create your own original content and/or share other related content. Blogging is great for organic SEO and for getting your listings out past traditional outlets.  Got a hot new listing?! Blog it!  Show your clients how your digital efforts will sell their house; cause it will!
  • Mortgage calculators, rent .vs buy, market reports, school reports, helpful links, etc…

For your website to produce results you need to use it and promote it.  Your website should DRIVE traffic and affect results!  Blogging is easy, fun and shows that you are proactive and through that effort, a professional on that topic.  If you think about it, blogging and social media have a lot in common.  You’re gathering information and pictures and broadcasting it to your network and inquiring minds.

  1. Social media isn’t going away so you better dive in!

You should participate in and/or have a working knowledge of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram and google+ (at least).  Social media is evolving by the second and it is changing the way we all do business!  If you’re not using Twitter, for example, you should know why.

  • It’s pretty easy to link your current and future social media platforms to your new website.
  • There are easy ways to manage all of your platforms in one place. I’m currently using hootsuite.com, there’s a free version and a $10 per month version
  • We already have tons of content to publish! We sell houses!  It’s easy for us to create interesting and eye catching content!
  • Your social media component should embrace the technology available today and create a beautiful and educational experience for your visitors.
  • People should have come away feeling that you are a knowledgeable, savvy broker that can be counted on for the information they need to make the best decision.
  • For real estate agents, being on social media drastically opens up our sphere of influence and referral base, allowing for us to connect with friends of friends of friends of clients and followers.
  • Realtors can furnish their personal brand/marketing personality by setting up a page where they can post about their neighborhoods of focus, home listings, home décor, new building techniques, alternative energy for the home; this is where your personality shines!
  • Jump in now and get a handle before it’s too late!
  1. Your Personal Brand

Personal branding in real estate is paramount.  In order to set yourself apart from the competition, you must be easy to find and when found, be seen as an expert in your field.

A brand is anything — a symbol, sigil, design, name, reputation or any other signifier — that separates one thing from another.  That’s a broad definition for what is actually a very personal message to the consumer.  People want to work with people, not faceless companies, and that’s what makes business relationships valuable.

In today’s real estate landscape, there is no success from being another face in the crowd. You have to separate yourself from the competition by being more appealing to your target audience. You can achieve that by creating a recognizable personal brand.

Before you begin, realize that you are the brand.  The face you see in the mirror every morning is your starting point; use this to your advantage — because nobody else can be you.

 Step 1: Define your brand by asking these questions:

  • What do you want people to know about you?
  • What are your values?
  • What are you passionate about?
  • Who do you look up to and why?
  • Who’s your target audience? Are they first-time homebuyers, empty nesters or condo-loving singles?
  • Ask people you’ve worked with how they would describe you.

Step 2: Craft your message.

The No. 1 rule for crafting your message is to just be you. If you try to project an image of someone you are not, people will always see through it.

In today’s social world, there is little separation between your personal life and work life. After reading your well-crafted bio on your website, clients will then look elsewhere for more information about you. Make sure the image and messaging on your social sites is consistent with your brand definition. Look at every post on your personal Facebook page through the eyes of your clients. Do they see a hardworking family man, a social butterfly or a weekend warrior? Again, think about the clients you’re trying to attract.

Step 3: Get others to tell your story through client testimonials

If you don’t tell your story, no one else will. You have to be a bit of a self-promoter, especially when starting out. Once you’re established, get your clients to tell your story.

Why does almost every major retailer have reviews on their site? Because we see them as objective. We will trust Joey in Anywhere, New York, more than we trust the companies pitching us their products.

Step 4: Build both your online and offline brand.

  • Be consistent. Use your brand logos, colors and imagery consistently on every marketing piece you create, from websites to business cards. Paying for good photography and design will always be worth the investment.
  • Set up social media profiles on at least the top four social sites: Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Twitter. You don’t need to be an avid social poster, but you can use products like Hootsuite or Buffer to help you manage and find content and post it to all your networks simultaneously.
  • Every tweet you send, every status update you make and every picture you share contributes to your personal brand. Once you understand this, you can start to be much more strategic about what you post.
  • When posting to social media, aim for a mix of 60 percent personal, 25 percent business and 15 percent problem-solving.
  • Find yourname.com and register it. Turn it into a website about you with links to your social networks and your business website.
  • Create a business website, such as localrealestate.com. Keep this site about real estate and home search. Keep your personal information minimal, but link back to your personal site for more info.
  • Offline assets like business cards, fliers and mailers should be consistent and professionally designed. Use your logo and profile photo properly.
  1. The Local Go-To Agent

Empowered with your own website and social media platform you have a great opportunity to target specific geographic areas.  When there is a certain area of town that you are trying to farm, you can integrate targeted keywords that represent the area of town into your website (Shippan this, Old Greenwich that, page titles, blogging, content, etc.).

  • By regularly integrating these specific keywords into your website, you are giving yourself a distinct advantage over your competition. SEO!  You will be found faster and have more opportunities.
  • When that potential client (buyer or seller) looks at real estate in your target area of town, there is a much greater chance that they will find you.  When they do find your site (and they will), it will have information specifically about that area, so you they see you as you truly are; the local real estate professional.  Chance favors the prepared!
  • Stay Current and Look Ahead– NAR says that 96% of Americans are looking to buy their house on the internet. As realtors, we owe it to ourselves and our clients to be on the cutting edge of internet technology.
  • The internet makes it easier for ALL OF US to get to the information we want.  Whether we are looking for a house, hotel or a cheap flight, we find a website that we’re comfortable with and we make a purchase.  Take some time, thoughtfully prepare your brand and content and create the information you would want to see!
  • Are you the new guy or gal? – Are you intimidated because potential clients may be thinking you are new to the office or the industry?  Because there is no other information about you on the Web?  Well don’t be discouraged, it happens a lot.  It’s a digital world and image is everything, even more so in real life!  A smart web presence will increase your public profile, your authority and will generate leads faster than any other marketing out there.  Easily, the fastest path to success!
  • Networking through Blogs – Creating a blog on your website will help you attract an audience. This is a positive way to demonstrate your knowledge and build trust for your readers. With an active blog, clients can see how you want to connect with them.  Blogs are a great place to link social media sites such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, google+, Pinterest and Twitter. These sites will go a long way in developing your brand, plus, social media posts drive traffic back to your site where they can explore even more.  Is it starting to make sense?
  1. Realtor Websites Support Lead Capture, Customer Contact and CRM

In addition to attracting prospects, a real estate agent website is ideal for efficiently capturing high-quality leads. This is made possible by incorporating online contact forms for buyers or even sellers who come to your site and are interested in learning more about your services.

  • Each time a form is completed, you will receive an email notification so that no lead goes unnoticed.
  • Capturing leads through an integrated website also enables you to automatically add new contacts to your contact management system, like the one offered through our Top Producer, or assign them to an email campaign.
  • Hopefully, your business has helped you accumulate a hefty number of clients. If it has, you’ll need to manage their information.
  • A website with contact management tools lets you collect valuable client information, such as names, phone numbers, and email addresses, so you can stay in touch with clients.
  • The next step is to employ customer relationship management (CRM) tools, which track interactions with your clients, monitor growth and sales, and determine which of your services are the most popular. This wealth of knowledge lets you develop and send relevant marketing campaigns to your client base, generating leads and sales.

Takeaway Points:

By having your personal website you will:

  • Provide important resources for home-buyers that will make them more likely to trust you and work with you.
  • Become a professional in your market
  • Establish your personal brand.
  • Effectively capture digital leads.