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4 Unconventional (But Very Effective) Real Estate Lead Generation Ideas
Interestingly, it wasn't all that long ago when real estate agents questioned why they should advertise on Facebook. So, how do you know if what's deemed an "unconventional advertising channel" is now worth your time and budget? If it works, of course! We have four real estate lead generation ideas for your advertising playbook that we've seen work firsthand. When used correctly, they'll set you apart from your competitors and help grow your business. 1. Advertise on alternative (but popular) online channels, like Waze Waze, a navigation app, is an excellent advertising platform for promoting open houses. These ads appear in the app for nearby drivers (in a safe, non-distracting way!) and encourage real-time behavior, like checking out an open house that's just off your usual route. There are three different ad units offered on Waze: Pin ads: Your open house pops up as a distinctive pin on the navigation map. Search ads: Your listing appears at the top of results when a nearby destination is searched. Zero-speed ads: This banner appears on the Waze screen when drivers stop for at least three seconds. Each of these ad units offers Waze users the option to be redirected to your open house in a single tap. In addition to encouraging foot traffic, Waze ads also help increase overall awareness of your listing. Many people likely drive near the property daily, but not right past it if their route has them driving a street or two over. Through Waze, your ad acts as a digital yard sign for all in the vicinity to see, alerting them to your listing without needing to drive right in front of it. 2. Get featured in a Google Local Pack Google's data reveals that searches for "near me" were more than two times as popular in September 2020 as the same period two years prior. As a result of this trend, which Google recognized years ago, the company has been working hard to beef up its search engine results page for queries with hyperlocal intent. As a result, Google introduced the local pack. This eye-catching top-of-the-page unit displays a large map with pins and highlights three local businesses under the map. It's prime placement because it appears even before organic recommendations at the very top of the results page. It takes some elbow grease to make it into the local pack, but as long as you're consistent, Google will look upon you favorably. Here's how to increase your chances: Create a Google business profile and fill out all the fields of the profile, including adding posts and photos. Ask past clients for five-star reviews to complete your profile. The real key is regular maintenance. What this entails is gathering reviews and updating photos and content posts weekly. Doing this signals to Google that you're an active real estate agent and that you have a profile with fresh content that users will care about. The more up to date you keep your profile, the more likely Google is to include it in the local pack and on the map. We love this particular real estate lead generation idea because focusing on your Google business profile does much more than just helping you appear in the local pack. 3. Prioritize getting positive reviews on Google We already mentioned that regularly generating new reviews on your Google business profile is necessary to be featured in the local pack. It's also a key component in your profile's SEO, helping it appear in indirect searches that have local intent (like "[city] real estate agents near me" instead of someone searching for your name). That's because Google wants to show its users content that is relevant and recent. If Google had to choose between a profile that has few reviews (or older reviews) and one that has many reviews, including recent ones, our research shows that it would definitely choose the latter. Besides boosting your online ranking, prioritizing reviews also helps you generate leads. Whether someone discovers you organically or Googles your name directly, you can guarantee that they'll read what others have to say about you—82% of consumers read online reviews, and they need to click through at least 10 before feeling like they can trust you. If you play your cards right—generate at least 10 five-star reviews to start and then gather new ones at least once a month—you'll easily convert those who read your Google business profile into leads. 4. Emphasize video in your marketing This might not seem like an unconventional real estate lead generation idea, but hear us out. You probably read often that you should be using video in your advertising—videos that introduce you as an agent, showcase your listings and feature happy past clients. But how often are you actually doing that? As much as the stats back up using video (such as that it outperforms text-only ads and static images by an incredible 1,200%), very few real estate agents are using it regularly. One easy way to share videos—that's also free—is to create a Homesnap Story for any or all of your listings. These work just like the popular Instagram Stories and will appear as media on your listing in Homesnap. When clients view the property page, they can watch your Story and click through photos of the home and any other media you added to the MLS listing. If you want to put budget behind your Homesnap Story, you can easily boost it to Facebook and Instagram in just a few taps. To view the original article, visit the Homesnap blog.
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6 Ideas for Dealing with Unrealistic Real Estate Clients
You've met them before--homebuyers that have the taste for champagne, but the budget for beer. How can you effectively assist that client without telling them what they want is something they can't afford? 1. Show Them a Few Homes that Fit Their Criteria Nothing can be quite effective as a quick awakening by sticker shock. Don't beat around the bush; show them the homes that fit their criteria. Always be solution-oriented and share some homes that possess a few of the features they require. 2. Show Them a List of Homes that Fit Their Budget If you want to avoid the pain of ripping off a Band-aid, maybe just show them homes within their budget. They might be okay with missing out on one or two of their preferred features in order to live comfortably within their means. 3. Sit Down with Them and Show Them the MLS If they really don't believe you, you can show them what it's like from a real estate agent's point of view. Some real estate clients will appreciate a straight-forward and honest perspective. 4. Show Them Recently Sold Homes and Their Closing Prices Something that homebuyers and sellers can't do through a public search is see what homes recently sold for. Even more than that, they won't know why homes sold for that much. You being the expert at real estate can explain to them the nuances of why two three-bedroom homes on the same street sold for two different prices. 5. Give Them Options Always have a solution. Don't let your clients have buyer's remorse or, worse, give you a bad review for having to "settle" with a home that they are not big fans of. There are plenty of financial options like family loans, cashing in on 401Ks, etc. 6. Understand Their Wants and Needs The market might not support the criteria at the pricepoint they can afford, so to best help your client sit down with them. Find out what they want and need. By digging deeper, you can come to a good resolution. For example, maybe you'll uncover that the features they want are very important, but they can compromise on location. To view the original article, visit the Zurple blog.
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New to RPR? Start Here to Boost Your Business
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Proactive Tips for Protecting Yourself as a Real Estate Agent
As an agent, you work diligently to make sure that your real estate business is doing its very best. Part of growing a real estate business is working with people you are not familiar with. Usually working with new people is an exciting perk of a real estate career, but you should always be aware of the potential dangers involved with meeting strangers. Your safety should play an integral role in your career. Whether you're doing a showing, traveling in the car, or just beginning the paperwork for the sale or purchase of a home, you should consider how you can protect yourself should the situation call for it. Open Houses When working an open house, you will be going into home to show it to potential buyers. Prior to hosting the open house, tell a coworker or your broker where you'll be and how long you'll be there. One option to make sure everyone knows where you will be is to set a calendar invite and share it with your colleagues, making sure to include the date, time, and location of where you will be. Also, when you host an open house, pay close attention to those who enter and leave the home. Before you lock up at the end of the open house, go through the house to make sure that everyone has left. When checking the home to make sure that everyone has left, you should make sure to do this safely. You can try leaving the blinds fully open to the home or maybe go through the home with a colleague on the phone with you. In the Car As a real estate agent, you likely spend large quantities of time in your car. Make sure you stay safe by taking regular precautions to avoid any breakdowns. Take your car in for regular maintenance as needed so that your car is able to perform at its very best. And, as a general rule of thumb, make sure that you keep the fuel in your car at least half full. Identification and Meeting Someone New Identity theft is alive and well, especially in the real estate world. When it comes to filling out important paperwork, or even just meeting a new client, make sure you verify the identification of the potential client. Ask for at least two forms of identification when there are major documents that need to be signed. When it comes to meeting someone new for the first time, take the extra step to meet the new client in a public place such as a local coffee shop or your office. Taking this step to vet the potential client can help ensure that the person is who they say they are and that they are truly interested in a home. Staying safe as an agent is incredibly important for you. You will be working with many new faces and showing many homes for sale. Take time to be cautious and stay safe out there! To view the original article, visit the Homes.com blog.
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Turning Renters to Buyers: Dispelling 5 Key Myths
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Generating and Keeping Clients with Cloud CMA + Homebeat
Multiple Dates and times Learn how to set your clients and leads to automatically receive live updates on where their home stands in the marketplace, with Cloud CMA and Homebeat. In this webinar, you'll learn how to stand out and stay top of mind, by easily providing your contacts with the information they want and need. Register now!
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3 Zoom Tips to Look 10x More Professional
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The 5 Best PDF Hacks for Agents
The Portable Document Format, or PDF, was created by Adobe in 1993. Adobe officials estimate that there are some 2.5 trillion PDF documents in the world. And PDFs have become a mainstay for real estate, empowering the digitalization of today's transactions. Adobe offers free versions of its Adobe Reader DC (Document Cloud) for Windows and Mac personal computers (here). With this basic Adobe Acrobat Reader version, you can open, read and print PDFs. But if you want to edit a PDF, convert a document to a PDF or do more complex tasks, such as sign or annotate a form, Adobe wants you to subscribe to access Adobe Acrobat Pro DC. A monthly subscription will set you back at least $12.99 a month! Fortunately, we have some PDF hacks to help you accomplish more with a PDF without the Adobe monthly subscription. Because as a real estate agent, sometimes you want to do more with a PDF than just read it or print it out. A couple of caveats: If you are a Mac user, you are in luck, as you have a built-in program named "Preview" for editing and even signing PDFs – for free. Preview will allow you to accomplish most of these hacks and more. If you are a Windows user, many of today's programs – such as Word, Excel, or PowerPoint by Microsoft – will allow you to create a PDF as an option when you go to print. Here are five of the best PDF hacks to help any agent do more with a PDF: 1. Sign up for a free Adobe Cloud account This hack can help you do more with PDFs. Also, by signing up, you create a free basic Adobe account, which will give you access to other PDF tools that Adobe provides for free online. If you don't make an Adobe Account, you can still access their online tools, but most of them will only allow you one free file conversion or download. With a free Adobe Cloud account, you can share, fill, sign, and comment on an unlimited number of PDFs. However, for access to advance PDF features – such as converting a document to a PDF, reducing its file size, converting a PDF to an image, etc. – you can only use a tool once every seven days without upgrading to a monthly subscription. You can sign up for free here. 2. Copy text from a PDF If your PDF is not a scanned image or the copy-and-paste functions are not disabled (try to highlight the text, and if you can, it is not a scanned image), you can use Adobe Reader to select and copy text. Then open a Word or text document to paste the copied text. However, sometimes when you paste your text, you may find symbols where there are letters. Instead, try this hack: Open the PDF in Google Drive as a Google Doc. That's right, when you open a PDF from Google Drive and preview it, you can then open it as a Google Doc. Google will automatically populate the text (and images) from the PDF and allow you to edit and copy and paste elsewhere. Step-by-step instructions are here. 3. Convert a PDF to a Word doc If you only need to convert one PDF to a Word doc, Adobe offers an online tool that works amazingly well here. Again, without a subscription, you only can convert one doc every seven days. Try this hack: If you need to convert PDFs to Word docs routinely, try this hack. FormSwift offers a free account that allows you to convert a PDF beautifully into a Word doc here. While all of your fonts may not match, you will have a Word document version of the PDF that allows you to edit all the text. 4. Create an image from a PDF Again, Adobe's online tool works excellent, instantly converting a PDF to a JPG image here. Try this hack: You can convert more PDFs to images with a slew of different format options at PDF Converter here. You will have to wait one hour between file conversions to download your next one or choose a subscription option. Still, this online converter offers the ability to convert multiple PDFs to images for free, as long as you can wait 60 minutes. 5. Reduce the size of a PDF Have you wanted to email a PDF document to a client, but the file size was too large? Then, you must "compress" the PDF to reduce the file size. The challenge is that most of the free PDF tools online that reduce file size will result in a fuzzy-looking document. The best hack comes from Adobe, as few online tools can match Adobe's magical conversion in reducing the file size here. If you do a quick Google search for the PDF task you need, you will discover many websites set up to specifically help you accomplish a particular PDF task – for free. The problem is you don't know which online tools you can trust. You also often need to be careful not to click on the accompanying advertising, as adware is abundant on these sites. Finally, you don't know where these files are stored and, therefore, must avoid uploading any PDF that contains confidential information. The good news is that in 2008, there was a universal standard created for PDFs. This allowed software developers, besides Adobe, to offer free and more affordable PDF software tools. For example, highly rated PDFelement offers software programs from $63 to $127 here, so you avoid the monthly or annual subscription. In addition, you'll find dozens of other PDF programs offered on sites like Amazon, complete with verified user reviews to allow you to pick the one that may work best for you. Just remember, the easiest solution is often the best solution, and you can always contact Tech Helpline to walk you through any PDF conversion task. To view the original article, visit the Tech Helpline blog.
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Stay on Top of Your SOI All Year Long
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Achieve Omnipresence and Master Your Hyperlocal Branding
Wednesday, September 29, 2021 at 10:00 AM PDT Does your personal brand resonate across your online presence? Utilize your Local Expert solution to help you stand out in a sea of other agents--achieving online omnipresence. Make local buyers and sellers think of YOU when they think real estate. What's covered in this session: How to take your hyperlocal branding to the next level Brand consistency tips to boost your business Social media and tech tips to help increase your reach Register now!
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Keep That Pipeline Pumping! Prospect with RPR
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Why You Should Target First-time Sellers
When it comes to real estate leads, first-time sellers are in a class by themselves. Consider a few of the things that make them stand out: They are some of the most motivated people in the real estate market Their needs are unique and extensive, partly because everything is new They may have a lifetime of future real estate transactions ahead of them True, not everyone will sell their first home at a very early age. But the latest research shows that Gen Z, the youngest generation in today's market, is motivated to both buy and sell early. More than 85% of Gen Z respondents in a recent survey said they planned to buy their first home by the time they turn 35. Nearly half say they expect to own a home no later than the age of 29. As a result, 88% of sellers aged 22 to 29 are first-time sellers. What's more, younger sellers overwhelmingly say they prefer to use an agent to ensure their transaction goes smoothly. Ninety-four percent of sellers in the 22-29 age group used an agent to complete their sale, more than any other age cohort. Because most first-time sellers will be on the younger side, they have great potential to deliver a high lifetime customer value. An amazing 77% of first-time sellers did not use the same agent who sold them the home. This is true even among the sellers who had a very positive experience with their original agent. By catering to first-time sellers, you have a unique opportunity to build a resilient, sustainable business that can offer value to a large and growing group of customers. The question, of course, is how to appeal to them once you have decided to do so. Delta Media Group has the answers: Modernize Your Practice with the Right Technology From the standpoint of a Millennial, a business without a credible real estate website simply does not exist. In the eyes of Gen Z, this effect is even more powerful. The very first thing to do to appeal to tech-savvy first-time sellers is to make sure your website reflects your brand and is easy to use on mobile. Make Your Business Instantly Responsive Younger first-time sellers are much more likely to communicate via text than by voice call. By incorporating text and social media into your business, you prove that you are the nimble agent they want. Aim to respond to first-time inquiries in five minutes or less. You can set more lenient expectations once you land your client. Market Your Ability to Leverage Digital to Sell Sellers often worry about whether or not they're getting enough of an agent's time and attention. One way to lay this concern to rest is to show off your ability to market a home with the newest digital technology. Virtual tours are hot because they allow buyers to expand their search territory without having to travel far. Publish Plenty of Content Especially for Sellers Like buyers, first-time sellers don't usually jump in without doing research beforehand. They use online content to piece together a picture of the market. Although they aren't likely to contact you directly at this stage, you can become a trusted advisor if you have the right content ready for them to peruse. Position Yourself as the First-Time Seller Expert Whatever impression your website gives, you'll have to keep it alive in your personal interactions. Lay the right groundwork by making sure you have answers at hand for common first-time seller questions. Tap your network so it's easy for your clients to access the expertise and services they need at every step of their journey. Get Ready to Juggle Selling and Buying Most sellers aren't planning to go back to the rental life — they also need to buy another property as they sell. This means they will have many of the same questions buyers do about financing, negotiation, and more. It may be wise to learn the ins and outs of bridge financing if you expect to work with many first-time sellers. Have a Follow-Up Plan for Every Client Once your happy customer has completed their sale, the next phase of the relationship kicks in. That means retention! Have a mix of methods like social, text and handwritten notes. You can maintain your relevance far into the future by publishing homeownership content the seller will continue to reference. Institute Email Marketing Across Your Business Email marketing helps you turn leads into customers and customers into life-long brand advocates. Most of your first-time sellers will be digital natives and very used to navigating email. Email marketing automation with "My Customer for Life" newsletters makes the process easy while still maintaining the human touch. RE Technology readers can reach first-time sellers more easily with a 30-day free trial of DeltaNET 6. To view the original article, visit the Delta Media Group blog.
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What's the Difference Between Marketing and Advertising?
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Dotloop Mobile App Training
Multiple dates Learn how to navigate dotloop's mobile app and take advantage of the app-only features. Available for iOS and Android. How to edit, share and sign docs Shared docs with clients via text Export text conversations Add docs from other apps Host in-person signing Submit for compliance and more Register now for: iOS webinar or Android webinar
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Desktop vs. Mobile: Can You REALLY Complete a Whole Transaction from Your Phone?
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How to Capture Leads with Your Real Estate Website
Many agents believe that simply having a real estate website is enough to capture a sizeable number of leads. But while that may have been true in the early days of the internet, relying on your average, run-of-the-mill site today is a surefire way to miss out on new business. So, if you're finding your website is doing little more than taking up space online, you're probably guilty of a few of the below. Why isn't my real estate website capturing leads? Your website looks ancient If your website looks like you haven't put any care into it since it was first launched in 1996, you're not going to generate any leads. It's that simple. The majority of today's homebuyers and sellers, spurred on by the pandemic, are seeking out digitally adept agents. If they're a seller, they know that getting the best deal depends on effectively advertising their home via both traditional and digital (e.g., digital marketing, virtual tours and walkthroughs, etc.) channels. If they're a buyer, they're looking for assurance that an agent will be able to locate (and close) on the best home for them, however and wherever it's listed—especially in a sellers' market where a sizeable number of properties are for sale for less than a week. An archaic website screams you're not with the times. You've ignored the back end for too long Maybe you built your website yourself and weren't altogether sure what you were doing. Maybe you hired your nephew to handle the design a few years back. Regardless, your site isn't functioning like it once was. Links are broken. CTAs don't work. Pages take forever to load—if they load at all. And your once-beautiful property photographs now fail to populate. As much as we'd like to think that websites are static, set-it-and-forget-it solutions, they're not. Websites need maintenance. And one in disrepair will not only frustrate and deter prospective buyers and sellers, but Google will push it down search rankings, believing your business may now be defunct. You don't offer property search There's no shortage of sites consumers can use to conduct their property search. So without the ability to do so on your website, what are the chances you'll win more business? What's more likely: They use another agent's website and then come back to your website, contact, and hire you? Or they work with the agent whose site they've already found helpful? Exactly. You don't have any effective lead capture Not all CTAs are created equally. Many agents mistakenly believe they can place a "Contact Me" button somewhere on their website and that alone will drive interested prospects. But it won't. The most effective lead capture forms are those that offer value to the consumer. CTAs tied to an offer have been found to increase conversion rates by as much as 121%. Examples of these for real estate agents include newsletter signups, market reports, and free home valuations. How to Capture Leads with Your Real Estate Website Assuming you've corrected the aforementioned issues and added effective lead capture forms, your next step should be to include your website in any and all marketing materials. If you're promoting your business via paid advertising—social and search—make sure you've included a link to your site. If you have a Google business profile, a necessary digital marketing tool for any real estate agent, make sure your profile links out to your website. Promote your website on all your social media platforms, and don't forget to include it on any offline print collateral you produce. Beyond promotion, keep your site updated often with fresh, new content, such as photos and market insights. Showcase your recent successes, and if you've had any business that has been particularly noteworthy—such as a home selling fast or for far beyond its listing price—make sure to highlight that on some of your pages. Don't be afraid to brag. It's your website, after all. To view the original article, visit the Homesnap blog.
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Friday Freebie: Buyer's Cheat Sheet to Winning in Low Inventory Markets
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In the Wild: Deliver Results from Anywhere with RPR Mobile
Agents who use RPR Mobile can: Instantly create, text/email client-friendly, colorful reports. Quickly search on- and off-market properties. Freely access leases, open houses, valuations, maps, demographics, schools, neighborhoods and market trends. Easily create CMAs on the go. Immediately respond to client inquiries and leads. Seamlessly connect with synced reports, recent searches, favorites and notes. The power to produce, right in the palm of your hand The good news is, you have the power to be more productive right in the palm of your hand. With the RPR app, REALTORS® have exclusive access to a host of tools that improve productivity while on the go, not to mention RPR's unmatched property data and reports. By downloading the free app, REALTORS® can instantly view on- and off-market properties, leases, valuations, tax and mortgage info, distressed data, flood zones, mapping, demographics, schools, neighborhoods and market trends — all from their iOS or Android device. What's more, the app provides a customizable report feature that allows you to create, save and share reports with just a few quick taps on the screen. Exciting new features are added all the time Here are a few of the app's latest adaptations that are certain to make your on-the-go experience more rewarding. Create and send reports Want to immediately respond to a client inquiry about a property, school, neighborhood, etc? Creating and sending reports via RPR's app is as easy as 1-2-3. Press the Reports button located in the lower left corner of the app's home screen. Type or speak an address, city or zip. Tap Search, choose a report, customize, and send your report in seconds. Search by voice RPR makes it easy for REALTORS® on the go with voice-to-text search capability. Look for the microphone icon on your keyboard then simply tap and talk. This option is also available when using the Property Notes function on the app. Comp Analysis Express Use your device to build an CMA, then create and text/email a colorful Seller's Report to your client. Best of all, if you've selected comps on the RPR website, they can be viewed on mobile and vice versa.There's also an interactive map to choose comps and advanced search functions such as property status and type. Here's how: From the RPR Property Details page: Confirm the subject property facts Search for comparable properties Adjust the comps as compared to the subject property Edit the price and price range Email/text your report Location-based school information Search for homes in a school attendance zone, get driving directions, and create school reports, all from your phone. Data sets include the school name, GreatSchools rating, grades served, address, and district. Real time open house info The RPR app includes open house information for residential properties. Where a phone number is available, click the number to automatically connect with the seller. Notes and photos From the property details screen, click Notes to enter text or voice notes. Upload your photos and apply them to RPR reports. This same feature also offers the ability to take a photo or select an existing photo from an album. App Ins-and-Outs Logging into RPR Mobile reveals four distinct categories: For Sale, New Listings, Recently Sold and Distressed. The homepage also displays icons that take you directly to the note taking feature, recent searches and reports, and saved searches. Swipe to the left for Local Market Conditions, swipe again to enter a specific property search or choose Advanced Search for further options. Look to the top of the screen to switch between list and map views. Your app's map search default is set to within a half mile radius of your current location. Adjust that setting by choosing the sprocket icon at the top left of your home screen, then select User Settings. Click on the magnifying glass at the top of the app's home screen to reveal a color-coded map identifying all of the on- and off-market properties within your search zone. On maps, select any home's icon to go to view details including price, history, photos and more. Pinch and zoom to display more homes or use a finger to move the map. At the bottom of the page, use the Draw feature to create your own search area. Additional options here include Sort, Filter and Save. Easily share virtual tour links with clients from the RPR Property Details screen. To view the original article, visit the RPR blog.
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Take Control: 3 Tips to Master Your Gmail Inbox
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Stop Losing Business Because You're Busy
It's no secret -- agents are absolutely slammed right now. With buyer demand holding strong and markets across the country remaining hotter than ever, it can be tough to keep up with the urgent follow-ups, the showings, the bidding wars...the list goes on. What's not cool, is losing business because you're so busy. And whether they know it or not, agents everywhere are slowing down on their lead generation, backing off of their pipeline, and missing out on opportunities to make connections and lay the groundwork for tomorrow's conversations and next year's closed deals. Let's start with productivity and covering your bases. You need to make sure you are running your business and it's not the other way around. Start by taking a look at your daily activities. Are you time blocking effectively? Do you have clear, actionable goals? If you're leveraging a CRM, are you be taking advantage of the daily to-dos, automated marketing, and lead follow-up tools? In real estate, you are your business, so you should run the show like you're the CEO. Determine what tasks are your high-dollar, high-value activities. Those are the things that you need to tackle yourself. But the kicker is that everything else is still important—and this is where your people and processes come into play. So, make a list of everything you should be doing to grow your business. What can you delegate to another person (ISA, admin, assistant, etc.)? What can you automate (eAlert listings to your database, automated marketing, digital advertising, etc.)? Anything left on the list that isn't generating revenue or bringing you joy, just stop doing. Here are 3 ways your CRM can help you stay productive even when you're busy. 1. Automated marketing. Technology allows us to be in two places at once. You can send that personalized email with best-fit properties for a prospective lead while being out in the field doing a showing or giving a listing presentation. That's how you can take advantage of this hot market and double down on lead generation without having to dedicate hours of time to prospecting. 2. Leverage real-time insights. Does your technology let you know who exactly you should be reaching out to and when? For example, Mary Homebuyer is browsing your site right now and she's favorited two properties and forwarded one to her husband. Or, Andy Homebuyer just registered on your site and he indicated that he also has a home to sell. You should be reaching out to these leads as soon as possible! "For us, [BoomTown's] Opportunity Wall is huge," says Tim Caudill of Florida Life Real Estate Group. "Our agents, three times a day, live on that Wall. To be able to see when a client is on your website shopping, to know that they favorited a property, to know how many times they've clicked on one specific property, shows their motivation to buy... And our agents love it. As soon as they see if somebody has favorite a property a fourth or fifth time, they'll pick up the phone, call them, and ask, 'Hey, would you like to schedule a time to see that property? It seems like you're in love with it because you're dating it online. Let's go ahead and get something going here, and we can see if you guys are fit for each other.' And it always breaks the ice and gets that agent on the phone." 3. Use a lead concierge system. Those leads we just mentioned are hot, and the best time to engage with them is while they're still showing interest. But what happens if they are favoriting properties while you're in a meeting? Or it's 4 in the morning? This is exactly why BoomTown built their Lead Concierge System, Success Assurance. Acting as an extension of your team, a Lead Concierge (real people, no bots!) will reach out, qualify, and engage leads on your behalf, 24/7. And they'll continue to nurture those leads and pass them off to you once they're ready to chat. A Visual To-Do List for Real Estate Lead Follow-Up![Free Download] To view the original article, visit the BoomTown blog.
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How to Successfully Navigate a Listing Shortage
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The Best Ways to Avoid Zoom Gloom
We've all come a long way with Zoom and other tech tools over the last year-plus, but that doesn't mean that the new normal feels much like the old one. Zoom Gloom and tech-tool fatigue are natural phenomena as video calls and long hours spent staring at a screen become the common theme of our day-to-day work lives. These challenges are shared experiences that resonate across industries, real estate included. Fortunately, shared challenges also lead to shared solutions, as companies and individuals continue to adapt to a world where so much business happens remotely. Battling Zoom Gloom and Other Tech-Tool Fatigue Zoom Gloom can be caused by a wide variety of psychological and practical factors. Remember those good, old-fashioned in-person meetings, where your mind might occasionally drift for a few minutes before you continued paying attention? As it turns out, those moments actually have real value for our brains, allowing us to avoid becoming overloaded with information and retain more details once we refocus. On a video call, we all feel a natural urge to look like we're focused on the meeting at all times. We're thinking about what we look like on camera, what other people look like, what's in their background, and what's going on around us in the household — all while trying to stay focused on the task at hand. We don't have the option of asking the person next to us if we missed something, and finding moments to ask questions during a busy call can be a challenging task. Add it all up, and it's easy to see why a day filled with video calls can leave any of us feeling drained. We feel like we have to be on at every moment, all while dealing with whatever is going on off-camera with our families, pets, and homes. It's a lot for our brains to handle, but we're all learning to adapt. It helps to remember that we're all going through a similar experience and some of the most practical solutions for battling tech-tool fatigue depend on first acknowledging that fact. It's Okay to Give Your Brain a Break The common urge to look like we're paying 100% attention at all times without exception is one of the biggest reasons for Zoom Gloom. So it helps to acknowledge that it's okay to look away, even when you're on camera. Giving yourself a momentary break from looking at the faces, screens, and backgrounds of everyone in the meeting can help your brain recharge. It's something that we all do in traditional meetings, and anyone who's been in a few virtual meetings will understand if you need to take your eyes off the screen to allow your brain to regroup. If you're planning a virtual meeting or video call, it can also be helpful to establish that only the person who's talking needs to have video enabled. Reducing the number of backgrounds and faces on the screen can help everyone in the meeting focus more easily while reducing mental fatigue. Leave the Multitasking for Later We've all become experts at multitasking over the course of the past year-plus, and when working from home, sometimes the need to multitask is unavoidable. However, it's best to keep multitasking to a minimum whenever possible while busy with a video call. Try to find a quiet room of the house, and avoid working on other projects while engaged with a call. Staying focused on that singular task makes it easier to retain information, and fewer distractions also means less stress during video calls. Limit the Stimuli on Your Screen What are a few browser tabs between friends? While it's tempting to keep all of your tabs open, glance at Slack, or manage your email inbox during a video call, all of that extra visual stimulation can lead to increased stress. Keeping unnecessary stimuli to a minimum makes it easier to focus, and those tabs will still be waiting for you when the meeting or call is over. If you're leading a meeting, encourage participants to use plain, calming backgrounds. The stimuli of a busy room with books on shelves and decorations all around can be a real distraction, especially when there are many people in a meeting who each have their own unique background. Take Breaks Throughout the Day to Refresh In a typical workday, there are built-in times when you take a break from screens to talk to colleagues, walk around the office, or gaze out the window for a few minutes. Remember that it's okay to give yourself a break at home, too! Setting a timer can provide a helpful reminder to get up, stretch, and take a quick stroll outside. Those breaks are a great way to manage stress while giving your eyes and brain a little rest from screens. Use Email or Traditional Phone Calls When Possible If you have a one-on-one meeting, an appointment with a client, or a quick question to ask a colleague, it's valuable to remember that not every interaction has to happen on a video call. When possible, try to use regular phone calls for one-on-one conversations and email or messaging apps for quicker conversations that don't require a call. Even switching one or two interactions a day away from video can provide a welcome break for your brain and help reduce fatigue. It doesn't hurt to ask, and chances are the person you're interacting with will appreciate having a break from video, as well. Schedule a "No Screen Time" Hour After Work Just like it's helpful to take small breaks throughout the day, it's also wise to give yourself a break from screens after you're done working. So before you fire up your favorite streaming service or hop on social media after work, block out an hour or so with no screen time. Spend some time with family, enjoy some outdoor relaxation, cook a nice meal, or immerse yourself in a hobby that doesn't involve too much technology. It's refreshing to take a break from screens in a work-from-home world, and the health benefits are numerous. The Shared Challenge and Shared Solutions of Zoom Gloom and Tech-Tool Fatigue While there's no catch-all solution to battling tech-tool fatigue, there is a common theme: give yourself a break. So much of the stress that comes from Zoom Gloom is because we're constantly engaged with technology throughout the workday, and we often turn to tech for relaxation after work. Whether it's a quick break during a meeting to simply look away from your screen or a more extended break during the day when you get up from your work to walk around, those little moments of rest add up. It's also helpful to remember that we're all going through a similar experience and to look at how much we've managed to accomplish during the last year despite the unprecedented interruptions to our regular work routines. The real estate industry may look different than any of us are used to, but teams everywhere are still achieving outstanding results. That's no small feat, and the ability to adapt during challenging times is certainly something worth celebrating. Tech fatigue got you down? Let your tech tools take stressful tasks off your place—RE Technology readers can try DeltaNET 6 free for 30 days. To view the original article, visit the Delta Media Group blog.
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Dotloop Advanced Agent Training
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The Real Estate Marketing Materials Every Agent Needs
There are more than 1 million real estate agents across the United States. Although you aren't competing with all of them, there's a high likelihood you have plenty of competition locally, including many seasoned vets. How do you catch the eyes of buyers and sellers when they have so many options? The answer is simple: marketing. Making a name for yourself is all about establishing your brand, clearly communicating your successes and unique skills, and promoting it all to the masses. Here are five important real estate marketing materials that will help you stand out from your competition. Postcards Snail mail is not dead! It can be more attention-grabbing than an email, and isn't as easily ignored as a phone call. Plus, it's a great tactic to use in conjunction with digital ads to boost visibility and build trust in your brand. To optimize the effectiveness of your real estate postcards, you must ensure two things: an eye-catching design and a targeted audience list. You don't need to hire a marketing company to help, but you might consider hiring a designer, especially if you want someone to create other real estate marketing materials, such as open house flyers and digital ad graphics. Freelancer sites like Fiverr and Upwork are great resources for finding an affordable, reliable graphic designer. Having the same person work on all your real estate marketing materials will ensure they have the same look and feel. You can also choose to go the DIY route and design your postcards on a site like Canva, which offers free templates and tools. By using a targeted mailing list of hand-selected prospects, you'll reduce unnecessary expenses while connecting with those who will be most receptive to your message. You can find the right homeowners using a tool like Homesnap Pro's free Likelihood to List filter to find prospects in your target areas who are highly likely to consider selling in the next 12 months. A-Frames Real estate A-frame signs are the double-sided stands that are shaped like a capital letter A when propped up. These are typically placed around a neighborhood to draw attention and foot traffic to your nearby open house. A-frames also make for old good-fashioned brand publicity. Purchase a dozen or more of them and place the A-frames all throughout your farm area whenever you have an open house. You may think that a mile or more away is too far for foot traffic, but you might attract drivers or grab the attention of other buyers and sellers in the area who are looking for a real estate agent for their specific needs. Custom Key Cutout Your real estate career will surely be filled with many successes. As such, you need to be ready for those photo-worthy moments with a large, branded key cutout for your clients to hold up in front of their new home. These happy photos of your clients holding your giant branded key are perfect real estate marketing materials. Here are just a few places where you should publicize these photos with a congratulatory message for your clients: Organic social media Paid digital ads Your Google Business Profile Your next e-newsletter Your real estate website Share the photos with your clients so they can post them on social media, too Branded freebies Real estate agents are almost always in networking mode because, as a salesperson, you have to constantly think about forming new relationships to expand your sphere of influence. When you have that mindset, you have to consider all the places when you could meet a potential buyer or seller—a PTA meeting, a dinner party, a Labor Day BBQ or the local farmer's market—so you should be prepared with more than just a business card for them to remember you by. Consider these common products that you can apply your logo and branding to, and hand them out while networking: Pens Fridge magnets Water bottles Reusable drinking cups Small bottles of hand sanitizer Here are some additional ideas for branded promotional products that you might consider, depending on your target audience or typical clientele: Chocolates in a nice pouch or box Measuring tapes Multipurpose utility tools Can-cooling sleeves Keychain can openers Homesnap Pro+ Agents also need digital real estate marketing materials to be successful. Homesnap Pro+ is the all-in-one answer that does more to boost agents' online reputation and brand than any other membership. This membership will: Set up and manage your Google Business Profile Help you generate 5-star Google reviews (Pro+ members see 3X more positive reviews) Create a responsive real estate website for you with a custom domain Publish lead pages for all your listings Unlock additional prospecting tools Reveal which agents have viewed your listings and profile recently …and more These member benefits give Homesnap Pro+ agents a robust online presence and equip them with the tools they need to generate leads in their market. There are certainly many different real estate marketing materials that you can create or purchase to support your business. However, these five marketing materials are top of their class for helping you stand out from your competition, whether you are working with a limited budget, looking for new ways to promote your brand, or just starting out as a real estate agent. To view the original article, visit the Homesnap blog.
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14 Benefits of Virtual 360 Tours for Real Estate Sales and Marketing, Part 2
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The Most Important Repairs Sellers Should Make for Buyers
Are you helping guide sellers through our current seller's market? Share this article with them to help them understand the pros and cons of making home repairs before listing: Thinking about getting your house in shape to list for sale before the super seller's market fades away? If you've owned your home for five years or more, or if you've been putting off maintenance tasks, you may have a great deal to figure out first. Maybe your home could use some big ticket upgrades, or perhaps the roof is at the end of its life. Repairs can certainly boost home salability, but not all will net sellers a worthwhile return on the investment or help them to sell quickly. To determine the most important repairs sellers should make for buyers, it comes down to two main components: seller goals and local market conditions. Should Sellers Make Major Home Repairs? When it comes to performing any major remodeling or home improvement project, most statistics show that you will not recoup the cost of those big-ticket item repairs. As nationally syndicated consumer columnist Clark Howard says: "The reason you do an improvement to your home is 'cause you want to. Because you end up losing money when you do a home improvement; you don't make money." Howard's assertion is supported by the findings of the two most current and credible sources, the annual Cost vs. Value Report by Remodeling Magazine and the National Association of Realtors' annual Remodeling Impact Report. The Cost vs.Value report breaks down its findings by ZIP Code to reflect local construction costs, while NAR's report includes valuable feedback from Realtors' perceptions of the impact of each project's resale value and the risk of losing sales should owners forgo an improvement when needed. (As a note, the most current NAR report is based on survey data from the summer of 2019, nine months before the pandemic arrived, and thus not reflective of the current extreme seller's market. Remodeling's report was gathered in the first half of 2021 and reflects rising contractors' costs that have led to spikes in home prices.) So, if you're looking to make a major buck in your home sale, major repairs may not be the best route. However, if you opt not to make repairs, it could cost you a sale entirely. This is when working with an agent to establish your goals and strategize accordingly becomes paramount. Home Repair Costs are Rising, and Sellers' Returns are Falling Homeowners' average return on their investments in improvements has fallen 11 points since 2014. Project costs have been rising steadily for years, and soared especially during the pandemic due to supply chain issues and labor costs. However, a recent Homes.com survey found that this year's competitive marketplace has somewhat bucked that trend and made it easier for pandemic sellers to recoup much, if not all, of their home improvement costs. According to the report, 82% of homeowners who sold in the first half of 2021 accepted offers at or above listing price. Of that group, over a third (34%) spent $10,000 or more on repairs or upgrades, and one in four recouped those costs entirely by selling for $10,000 or more over listing price. But sellers may not be able to expect those same robust selling prices for much longer. Price growth and buyer activity is cooling down, meaning buyers may not feel desperate enough to overlook needed repairs that previous pandemic buyers have been more forgiving of. What Do Sellers Need to Disclose About Repair Needs? State laws require sellers to disclose specific information to buyers about the house's structural and other features that might affect the house's value. For example, in some states, sellers cannot fraudulently conceal major defects such as a leaking basement or termite infestation. Many states have created standard forms with which sellers are expected to record any problem affecting the property's value or condition. State legislations aside, standard real estate contracts contain a contingency clause that allows the buyer to conduct a house inspection. Should the inspection find that repairs are needed, contingency clauses usually require sellers to make them before closing, give buyers the right to renegotiate the selling price to account for the cost of the repairs, or walk away from the deal and retrieve their earnest money. In today's highly competitive markets, some buyers are making bids that omit one or more contingency clauses, but most retain the home inspection clause. What Should Sellers Repair Before Listing? In today's seller's market, it's unlikely that sellers will lose deals over minor repair needs. In fact, Homes.com's aforementioned survey found that 32% of homeowners who plan to sell in the latter half of 2021 plan on making repairs prior to listing. Remember, though — the market is showing signs of slowing down. If you plan on selling in the coming months, make a list of all significant repairs needed and get estimates on the cost of repairing them. It might also be wise to hire a home inspector who can prepare a report listing necessary repairs that would require you to disclose them to potential buyers under your state's disclosure requirements. Once you have your list of issues, divide them into these categories: Minor repairs that can be fixed before listing (such as landscaping) and/or cost less than $5,000 each to fix, like painting, trash removal, or gutter repairs and cleaning. Major repairs you'll either have to fix or otherwise disclose to buyers, such as water and sewer systems, structural systems, electrical, HVAC systems, wood-destroying insects, and hazardous materials such as lead paint. Issues from the above lists (or others you may have missed) that have the greatest potential to become deal breakers that drive away buyers. Depending on the market, these deal breakers could include a cracked foundation, a leaky and/or moldy basement, extensive termite damage, an old roof that needs replacing, or window-unit air conditioning. This is the list you ultimately want to focus on. What you add to the deal breakers list will depend on both your goals and your local market. Does a quick sale take precedence, or is your main goal a high selling price? Are there issues that local buyers are consistently walking away from? Your agent will have those insights, and can help you determine which repairs will strike the balance in between. How to Sell Your Home When Major Repairs are Needed Repairs for some major potential deal breakers, like old roofs or moldy basements, can be paid for with an equity line of credit you pay off at closing. For repairs you absolutely can't afford to fix —but can't afford not to fix if you want it to sell — you have three options: Get repair estimates from local contractors. Proceed with selling as planned and disclose problems as required by law. Should the issues surface in the buyer's inspection, be prepared to fix them before closing or lower the sales price. Make the minor, inexpensive repairs, then get an appraisal to determine your home's market value. List your house at that value, minus the cost of repairing any potential deal breakers your agent has identified. Share the estimates with serious buyers and their agents, explaining that you lowered the price and why. A lower price should attract interest, and bidders may even raise their offers beyond what the repairs would cost you. Sell your house "as is." Don't make any repairs or improvements, but price your home a good deal lower than its actual value to reflect the home's condition. The low price could generate a lot of interest, especially from investors, and your best offer may be as high, or higher than, the actual value. This can be a gamble in a cooling market, but your agent will know if it's a strong option. There's no "one-size-fit-all" solution to identifying the most important repairs sellers should make, but as long as you identify your goals and work with a knowledgeable agent, you'll enjoy a much more successful selling process. To view the original article, visit the Homes.com blog.
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How to Create a Killer Real Estate Content Calendar
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Friday Freebie: Prospect List of 200 Targets in Your Area
Online ads have made it easy to market to real estate prospects online--but what if you want to target them offline? In this week's Friday Freebie, we're highlighting a way to reach your geographic farm via direct mail marketing with a FREE prospect list of 200 verified names and addresses. Read on to learn more! Free List of 200 Prospects, courtesy of ProspectsPLUS! How do you target real estate consumers offline? By geographic area? By niche, net worth, or length of residence? However you market your services, ProspectsPLUS! is offering RE Technology readers a FREE list of 200 prospects (with promo code FREE200) via the targeting option of your choice: Length of residence Geographic area Empty nesters Absentee owners High income renters For Sale By Owner High net worth prospects Real estate investors And more! You can use your free list to enhance your current marketing efforts or to try out an entirely new niche! Start by going to this page. And then: Under Step 1, click the Build Your List button Choose how you'd like to select your targets: via MapMyMail or Demographics Follow the steps to build your list Make sure to limit your list to 200 to keep it no-cost Name your list Click Add to Cart, then Checkout on the next page Add promo code FREE200 (important!) Click Place Your Order Once you've finished building your list, a receipt will be emailed to you instantly, followed by a link to download your list. Get started targeting real estate consumers in your area and create your FREE prospect list with promo code FREE200 today!
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RPR Reports: Easy to Create, Hard to Duplicate
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Boost Your Deal Flow with This Easy Step
Deal flow is the rate at which business proposals and pitches are received. Investors, including investors in commercial real estate, use this as a general barometer of whether business is good or bad. The same term is also used, alongside lead generation, among real estate professionals focused on residential property. More referrals lead to better deal flow overall. Leveraging marketing automation technology is a key step in accelerating real estate deal flow. Although there are many tools that can help, the cornerstone of any strategy is CRM. CRM, short for Customer Relationship Management, enhances visibility across your customer ecosystem. A powerful all-in-one solution is no longer nice to have; it is an absolute must-have. A CRM serves your needs in three powerful ways: It provides complete visibility into where your leads and current customers stand in their transactions It enables you to nurture your leads consistently using personalized email marketing and other tools It strengthens your ability to follow up with leads and past customers to get more deals and referrals Not long ago, only a fraction of real estate agents used a CRM. Now, the tottering old "technology stacks" of yore, built of a dozen apps that don't work together, are giving way to centralized solutions. By using CRM effectively, you benefit yourself and your clients. When it comes to deal flow acceleration, a single technique can bring your business to the next level. CRM-Based Audience Segmentation Improves Deal Flow through Targeted, Personalized Messaging Your email marketing list is one of your most valuable business assets. That's because your list is packed with people who have a definite, pre-existing relationship with you and are amenable to hearing what you have to say. You have the power to significantly influence subscribers, making customer conversions more likely at times when they benefit you most. You can also use the same resources to stay connected with past customers and acquire referrals. But what's the best way to differentiate your messages so they remain relevant and welcome? Audience segmentation means refining your email list by placing subscribers into sub-lists, called segments, that match up with your relationship and their interests. Using segmentation, you can make sure subscribers get only the most targeted and relevant information. That makes it more likely they'll take action. 5 Ways to Boost Your Monthly Deal Flow Using Audience Segmentation There are many situations where segmentation creates better experiences for your contacts. Your CRM can turn your single list into a seamless collection of highly focused sub-lists in a matter of just minutes. That means you will get better ROI from your email drip campaigns and can expect a fuller schedule overall. Let's look at some audience segments that can bolster your business: Past Customers - Audience segmentation is particularly important when current customers close their deals and become past customers. They will no longer need content on negotiating a buy or finding financing, for example. You can keep the conversation flowing with these subscribers by sending them information on homeownership, DIY repair, decorating, and more. The more you know about their interests, the better. Cold Leads - When leads have gone cold, it is a wise idea to activate a special sub-list for them. Use email in conjunction with text message marketing to reignite the conversation. If you can verify that someone is still looking for a home, then they return to your current leads list. Your cold leads list can leverage urgency and limited-time offers to spur action. If a lead remains cold for months, however, it is polite to pause messages and circle back later. "Love List" - Your "Love List" consists of your customers who have demonstrated they were not just satisfied with your work, but thrilled. For example, they might have given you 5-star reviews on multiple platforms without you even raising the subject. They deserve a special list category because you will want to pepper your messaging with personalized check-ins. It is okay to ask your Love List for referrals several times a year! Open House Attendees - Open house registrants who actually show up are clearly on their way to a purchase — the question is when they'll find the right home for them. Follow up with attendees you don't hear from right away, using a text, call, email, or even a social media message to see what they thought of the property. Open House No-Shows - Open house no-shows can stay on a list segment, ensuring they get future invitations to local events. But you should also touch base to see if you can find out what happened. Did other commitments come up, or was the house a dud? If you've done a virtual tour, be sure to send the link. Unlock the power of CRM and marketing automation with DeltaNET 6. RE Technology readers can try it free for 30 days. To view the original article, visit the Delta Media Group blog.
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It's All in the Details: Florida Agent Kaisen Mitchell on Standing Out in Today's Hot Market
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5 Easy Ways to Get MORE Listings This Fall
You need listings, everyone does. But are you looking in the right places? Or just the usual places? Try thinking outside the box and consider some, or all, of these amazing ways to find more listings this fall: 1. Ask for a referral Call people you've already worked with, maybe even someone you've recently sold a home to. These folks can be part of your sphere of influence, but that's not always the case, right? However, a former client for whom you did a fantastic job is almost your best-case scenario for referral business. Even if you aren't going to try and sell them a new property, ask if they'd be willing to stand up for you as a reference to get that baked-in trust you need with any prospective new client. 2. Give the FSBO market a try Selling your home on our own can start out as a great idea (and a way to avoid at least half of the commission a professional real estate agent would see from the sale). But that pie-in-the-sky plan can often turn sour, especially given the multitude of nuance surrounding staging, showings, negotiations, contracting, inspections, and more. A FSBO property that's been on the market for a minute (especially in these crazy times) might do well to listen to your pitch on why it just makes sense – financial and otherwise – to recognize they made a valiant attempt, but that it's time for the professional to take over. Create real estate postcard campaigns or just go door to door. Let them hear your voice, sympathize with them about the world of FSBO, and ask if you can meet to evaluate where they are, and what professional next steps would be warranted. 3. Regularly host a non-real estate-related gathering Not everything you do has to revolve around getting listings and selling homes. But…it does. It's your job. And the only way you're going to be successful is the constant nurturing of your leads and spheres of influence. Sometimes the beauty of the present is how it's wrapped. Gather your spheres of influence for informal gatherings, at a location that has NOTHING to do with your job, and let them network among themselves, and with you. Causal relationship building is the by-product of casual relationship building. Your sphere of influence will begin to draw on inter-relationships that have nothing to do with you or your business. But when the time comes to suggest an agent for a sale or because one of their friends is looking to buy, that connection may ultimately benefit you enough to get a contact, if not the listing, itself. 4. Open house contacts There are two sides to an open house: somebody trying to sell their property, and someone interested in buying. Someone popping into an open house might not just be a nosy neighbor. They might be someone interested in understanding more about a specific property or a specific neighborhood. And before they can buy a new home, they will likely have to sell their existing home. Never let the chance to grab contact information (even if it's only a social media username) pass you by. If you're going to do that, though, you must follow-up quickly – same day is not out of the question – and thank them for dropping by and introduce the idea of you working for them to both sell their existing and find their next home! 5. Capitalize on inherited properties If I asked you to tell me how many homes are inherited every year in the US, would you be anywhere close to 1.1 MILLION? There's actually a large and wonderful niche for these types of properties that you can represent. Somebody dies, they leave their house to someone who doesn't want it (or can't afford the upkeep, or just wants the money and not the hassle, or they're selling it out from under their siblings…maybe not that one). As a real estate agent, it's prime pickings, and hopefully could represent a quick sale. Get that listing and remember this niche! Give your business a boost this fall! As the leaves turn brown and hit the ground, do whatever you can to ensure the top of your sales funnel remains full. Take advantage of the best ideas to grow your book, find great clients, and fulfill your real estate dreams!
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14 Benefits of Virtual 360 Tours for Real Estate Sales and Marketing, Part 1
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The Best Facebook Ads to Target Real Estate Buyers
Facebook ads are a popular way for real estate agents to market their listings to potential buyers. But like any widely adopted advertising tactic, efficacy varies. Some agents generate scores of high-intent leads from each and every campaign. Others struggle to source a contact or two. As we've run tens of thousands of successful Facebook campaigns on behalf of our agents, we wanted to shed light on what strategies lead to greater resonance with buyers and more effective lead generation. High-quality photos With every agent carrying a state-of-the-art camera in their pocket, there's no excuse for a lack of crisp, high-resolution property photographs. It's the only standard, really. Many buyers, especially younger, more digital-adept ones, assume that poor photos are a deliberate attempt to obfuscate a less-than-desirable property or features. As a result, ads with poor quality photographs receive fewer clicks and, in turn, generate fewer leads. Read our tips for taking better listing photos. Inclusion of video A year ago, video wasn't an expected component of any real estate listing advertisement. After the pandemic, though, it's the norm. Why? Prior to the pandemic, prospective homebuyers would attend showings and open houses if they had even so much as a passing interest in a property. Facebook advertisements were essentially teasers, designed to get an agents' name out there and entice buyers into attending an in-person showing. No buyer expected to see every corner of a property displayed in a Facebook ad. But because of Covid, homebuyers are more choosy when it comes to in-person attendance. They'll only visit a property if they believe there's a serious chance they'll make an offer. Videos provide a way to approximate that in-person experience. Essentially, without video, you run the risk of a consumer not seeing enough value in the property and opting out of further pursuit. Read our tips for optimizing your video marketing. Immediacy + Humblebrag = Winning Copy Facebook (or social media in general, really) is never a place for humility. Successful agents leverage their past successes in their advertising. So, for example, when promoting your listings, try highlighting how a particular property won't be on-market for too long because your previous listings went under contract in days in your advertising copy. You'll convey both your prowess as an agent and create a greater sense of urgency. Highly targeted Facebook allows you to build multiple custom audiences. To do so, upload contact information for people you know, such as your sphere and any leads you've generated. Facebook will match the data to its user base and allow you to target this specific group of people (if they have a Facebook account). There are three advantages to making a custom audience for all your ads: It will keep you top of mind. The next time someone in your sphere is looking for a real estate agent or has a referral, your ads will remind them that you're an active agent. You'll build brand awareness for leads and cool prospects. Repetition is key if you want them to remember you over competitors. It improves the opportunity for organic reach. People who know you are most likely to hit the share button, giving you free placement in their feed. Only 3.5% of real estate agents target their sphere. But they are the best performing agents. Leverage lookalike audience feature Similar to the custom audience, Facebook's lookalike audience is infrequently used (only by 7.5% of campaigns). To access this feature, you must first create a custom audience as we described above. Facebook will mine that data for common characteristics so it can find a group of similar users who are most likely to be interested in your ad and services. This type of audience is more refined than blanket-targeting people based on interests and demographics. You can also layer location parameters on top of the audience to ensure your ad stays local. To view the original article, visit the Homesnap blog.
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How Direct Marketing Can Still Impact Your Real Estate Business
With so many digital marketing tactics available today, it can be easy to forget about more traditional tools for reaching your clients and potential leads. But when used correctly, tools like direct marketing can still hold significant value to your real estate business! Direct marketing is a great way to re-engage older leads, keep in touch with existing clients, and reach people who might spend less time online, all while also diversifying your marketing plans. As always, any marketing success depends on understanding who you're trying to reach and offering real value to clients and consumers. So, it's crucial that you know exactly what to do – and, more importantly, in some cases, what not to do – when it comes to direct marketing campaigns. Let's take a closer look at the most common do's and don'ts of direct marketing, with tips that can help you maximize your return on investment. The Do's of Modern Direct Marketing Know Your Audience and Have a Plan for Reaching Them Direct marketing works best when you have a plan for who you want to reach and know how you can capture their attention. A postcard or flyer that's too general is unlikely to make an impact. If you're trying to reach buyers, it's important to include information that appeals specifically to their needs. The same goes for sellers. It's better to create a variety of direct marketing materials than to take a one-size-fits-all approach. Make Sure That Your Direct Marketing Always Offers Value While there are many elements to consider in order to maximize the appeal of your direct marketing, offering value matters most when it comes to a return on your investment. So, how do you provide value? Provide informative content that shows your audience what they can expect when choosing your real estate business. Help them understand their local real estate market, how their home fits within that market if they're planning to sell, or the types of homes that are available if they plan to buy. In addition to capturing the attention of your audience, offering value also helps demonstrate the expertise of you and your agents. Avoid Clutter to Make Your Direct Marketing Content Easy to Consume and Absorb The right mix of text, images, logos, and colors makes a big difference in how easy your direct marketing content is to consume. And when you make your content easier to consume, your audience is more likely to follow through by reading it all. There are plenty of ways to approach the layout of your direct marketing, so the real key is making sure that the page isn't too cluttered with information and images. Use Localized Information That Focuses on Specific Markets If your direct marketing relies upon general, statewide real estate data, it's likely to end up in the junk pile before it even gets a cursory glance from your audience. That means it's critical to focus on specific markets with localized information that's relevant to the recipient. You can showcase a list of homes that an agent has sold, comparing the sale price and initial price. Or you can feature homes sold in a specific neighborhood, with accompanying photos and location information. For buyers, a list of historic home prices in a particular neighborhood that highlights recent trends in value can be a great way to add appeal. There are a ton of different ways to provide valuable information, as long as you remember to keep it as local as possible. Use Calls to Action to Encourage Your Audience to Take the Next Step Providing contact information so your audience can connect with your business is essential, but it will take more than just basic info to achieve your direct marketing goals. That's why it's so important to include a specific, targeted call to action that actively encourages your audience to take the next step. The call to action should clarify what those next steps are and should be tailored to build upon the valuable information you include with your direct marketing. What Not to Do with Direct Marketing Campaigns Don't Use Low-Quality Images As with most types of marketing, capturing attention is crucial to success when you're sending postcards, flyers, or other direct marketing materials. You wouldn't use fuzzy, low-quality images to promote a listing, and you shouldn't do it with direct marketing, either. High-quality photos will make your direct marketing look more professional, appealing, and intriguing, so it's worth the investment to use professional-quality images for your campaigns. Avoid Getting Too Fancy With Fonts While it can be tempting to use a variety of different fonts to highlight different parts of the text on your direct marketing, it's better to resist the temptation. Too many different fonts can make the text difficult to read and make it harder to focus on what you're trying to convey with your marketing. For a better chance of success, pick one or two fonts to use for each piece of direct marketing, then customize those fonts with bold, underlined, or italic text when you need to make something pop out from the page. Don't Overwhelm With Too Much Text It's important to include valuable information with your direct marketing, but too much information can be overwhelming and leave your marketing sitting at the top of the trash can. When the recipient of your direct marketing sees a wall of unbroken text packed into a postcard, they'll be less likely to read it. Instead, use shorter copy in larger type, and break it up into easy to consume segments with clear headlines that help guide the reader. The easier you make it to read your content, the more likely you are to generate results. Don't Forget to Integrate Your Direct Marketing with Your Real Estate CRM Direct marketing may be an old-school tool, but that doesn't mean that you can't use new-school tech to get it done. Your real estate CRM can help you choose who to reach through direct marketing and keep track of your results. It can also help you automate your marketing plans, meaning that's one less thing you'll have to worry about during your already jam-packed days. How the Right Marketing Mix Can Help Grow Your Real Estate Business Direct marketing can become a valuable part of your overall marketing strategy, so long as you have the right plan in place. It's essential to have a variety of ways to reach clients and cultivate leads because every person you're trying to reach has their own unique preferences. Even for people who do most of their research online, sending something via direct mail can help your business stand out from the competition and remain at the front of would-be clients' minds when they start their next real estate search. The trick is finding the right mix of marketing tactics for your business in order to maximize both your audience and your potential for converting leads. To view the original article, visit the Delta Media Group blog.
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How to Leverage Social Proof as a Real Estate Agent
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How to Create Instagram Posts for Your Real Estate Business with Canva
Ready to start sharing engaging real estate content with your network, but not sure where to start? If you want to share neighborhood market stats, new listings, open houses and client testimonials, this article will get you going. What is Canva? Canva is a simple to use, online design and publishing tool. With it, you can easily create designs without having professional design skills. All you need is an understanding of your brand colors and fonts, along with a clear idea of what you want to share. With a free account, you'll be able to use the templates shown in this article. But it will take a Canva pro account, or pay per download, to export the designs as graphics you can share on Instagram. If you're just kicking the tires, try signing up for the Canva Pro 30-day trial. That will allow you to have all of the features, free for a month. Benefits of Canva Templates With premade templates, you're not starting from scratch. You'll simply find designs that you like and then modify the overall look and feel as needed with your brand colors, fonts, and imagery. Simple Tips to Edit Your Canva Design Agents active on social media platforms such as Instagram often share market stats for their geographic farm area. So for this article, we're going to break down the how-to and provide a few specific templates to make the job easier. Change Colors Click Neighborhood Market Update to access one of our Canva Templates. Select "Use Template." If you have a Canva account, you'll be prompted to log in. If you do not have an account, you can create a free account using your email address. Click to select the element that you want to edit. Then click on one of the color tiles that appears on the toolbar above the editor. Then from the color editor panel, click the color that you want to apply. To choose a different color, click "New color" or the rainbow tile from the editor side panel to use the color picker. Add or Change Image With the template design open, look to the far left side panel. Click the "Photos" tab. If it's not showing, click the "More" button to locate it. Look for images by typing keywords into the search bar. Once you've found or uploaded an image, add it to your design by simply clicking on it. Any image you've added can be adjusted from the top toolbar. Make sure you've clicked on the image and then choose: Effects, Filter, Adjust, Crop or Flip. Social Media Friendly Market Update with RPR and Canva Now that you understand the basics of editing a Canva template, let's focus on customizing a Market Stats template using data from RPR. First, click this link and then select "Use Template." The design shown below will open. Next, we need to get the data from RPR to update our graphic. You'll need to visit RPR and search for the area you'll be covering. If the area is a neighborhood, try using the RPR Neighborhood search tool, or create a Market Activity report for any geographic area. For this example, I'll generate a Market Activity report for a neighborhood and we can use the data from there. Within RPR, select "Research" from the main navigation and then choose "Map Search."(Note: If the map is open to the correct area, simply pan or zoom the map as needed to get centered on your area. If it's not, use the search bar to enter your area.) From the top of the RPR map, select the "Show Geographies" pull-down. Select "Intermediate Neighborhoods," and neighborhood outlines will display on the map wherever available. Locate the neighborhood you'll be covering. In my case, it's called "Lake Forest neighborhood in Lake Oswego, OR." Select the area, and it will turn an orange color, and a map balloon will display. Click "Create Market Activity" report. Once the Market Activity report has been generated, open it and navigate to page #2. We'll use the Median Estimated Home Value and 12-Month Price Change for this template. Next, navigate back to Canva with the Market Update template open. Double click on the blue median estimated home value text. It will become highlighted. Now type the correct number from your Market Activity Report. In this case, it was $690K, so type that amount in. Then repeat this for the "Change Over the Last 12 Months." In this case, that was 26.11%, so type that now. See how easy that was? Now update the colors and image as needed using the directions from the start of the article. Downloading Your New and Finalized Sharable Design Once you've updated your colors, imagery, and market stats, it's time to export your design. With the design open, tap the "Download" (or down arrow) icon at the top right corner of your screen. A menu will open, then choose a file type for your download. Wait for the export progress gradient to complete. The design will immediately save to your computer or camera roll. Download 6 Free Canva Templates for your Real Estate Business We created a few real estate-themed Canva templates that are free for your use. You'll need to add your own colors and images, where appropriate, but these designs mean you'll spend less in design mode and more time sharing content in your feed. RPR and Canva—a Match Made in Real Estate Marketing Heaven Well, now you know the secret of how other agents create such beautiful, professional-looking images for their social channels. Combining Canva's low cost, easy-to-create image templates with RPR's data will make you look like the go-to neighborhood expert you are. Next time you post on Facebook or Instagram, remember this how-to and take your post to the next level. Your social posts shine and they'll get plenty of eyeballs, too. Good luck! To view the original article, visit the RPR blog.
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Trending Now: Smart Technology, Smart Marketing, Smart Realtors
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Optimizing Your Workflow with Form Simplicity
Thursday, September 9, 2021 at 11:00 PDT This webinar will cover how to improve your Form Simplicity experience on the new and improved interface with time saving tips such as: Setting up Preferences Adding, Editing and Importing Contacts Adding, Editing, and Previewing Clauses Creating Forms Packages Creating Transactions Importing MLS/TAX Data into Transactions Inserting Clauses Tasks E-sign Archiving Completed Transactions Register now!
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Please Join Us in Donating to REALTORS for Relief from Hurricane Ida in Louisiana
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7 Tips for Best Real Estate Listing Presentation Using 360 Tours
In 2021, professional listing presentations are more important than ever. Only the most impressive presentations will win over clients. How an you impress your potential clients? How will you exceed your competition? To find out, we sat down with David Crombie, the CEO of Professionals Group Australia, to discuss a few incredible options for a visual presentation, including virtual tours. He shares why virtual tours may be the one thing that sets you apart from your competition during a listing presentation. Listen to David and help yourself to digitalize your offer and improve your listing presentation: Here are the seven advantages that virtual tours deliver: They are much more engaging and immersive than videos, and they put the viewer in the driver's seat They allow you to become a digitally fluent real estate agent who can successfully promote the listing If you use VR goggles, you allow viewers to virtually transport themselves to the property as if they were there Having a 360° virtual tour on a mobile phone allows buyers to have their family and friends included in the decision making process VR tours make for amazing and outstanding social media content, adding value to your marketing package Virtual walkthroughs can be used as a reporting tool for showing landlords how their property looks like while you manage it You can tell sellers that VR tours will increase engagement with your listing, and that the time spent on listings with virtual tours is four times higher than on listings with photos only Learn how you can create unique virtual tours in under 15 minutes for less than $3! Book your free information call now. To view the original article, visit the Virtual Tours Creator blog.
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4 Reasons Why the End of Forbearance Will Not Lead to a Wave of Foreclosures
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Establishing the Infrastructure to Support Scaling Your Real Estate Business
Imagine your client flow doubles overnight. Would your current infrastructure and systems support this influx of new business? Probably not. For the same reason you wouldn't try to fit 100 people into a 10-person boat, your real estate business can't handle that many clients. If your business can't handle an increase in business, the infrastructure and systems need to be upgraded so they have the capacity and infrastructure to manage all the new clients you will generate as you scale your business. In the first two sections of this Scaling Your Real Estate Business series, we've discussed ways to evaluate your real estate business for growth opportunities and strategies to generate funding to finance your scaling venture. Using the tools and guides from these articles, you can calculate the amount of leads, transactions, and budget needed to hit your specified Gross Commission Income (GCI) goals. In this article, we'll share advice on ways to establish a stable infrastructure for your real estate business to support the increase of lead generation, nurturing, and ultimately, the scaling of your business. If you plan for growth, you plan for success. That means establishing the right infrastructure to support your scaling venture for real estate business. Before you start planning, ask yourself these questions: How will I consistently generate enough leads to hit my GCI goal? What systems do I need to support, manage, and track the increase of leads, clients and transactions? Is there technology that can support my business' growth and make processes more efficient? Will I need to hire staff to help me? How will I ensure each client and transaction gets treated with the same focus? Let's go back to the imagination where our client flow doubles overnight. When brainstorming ideas that support your business if it doubles, you must examine and come up with solutions each stage of the lead's journey. These stages include: Consumer Lead Qualified Lead Client Evangelist Simply put, a consumer is unaware of you or the real estate services you provide. At this stage, the consumer isn't looking to buy or sell a home. They convert into a lead when they engage your brand and give you their contact information. At this stage, the lead is usually interested in your real estate services but are window shopping for a home and are less motivated. A lead converts into a qualified lead when they engage with your brand more frequently, At this stage, the qualified lead will stay on your website longer, open your emails, save listings, and even each out to you to schedule a meeting. A qualified lead becomes a client once you've agreed to work together. At this stage, communication is frequent, homes are being shown, and offers are being made. A client becomes an evangelist when you dazzle them, help them achieve their real estate goals, and complete the transaction. At this stage, the evangelist is enthusiastic about your services and recommends it to their network. For your business, that means focusing and upgrading systems that support: Lead Generation (Consumer to Lead) Follow Up, Tracking and Nurturing (Lead to Qualified Lead) Conversations (Qualified Lead to Client) Client/Transaction Management (Client to Evangelist) To generate more leads, you can increase your ad budget, diversify your lead sources, or farm new territories. You can upgrade your follow up, tracking, and nurturing systems by automating them with personalized messages that provide value and send with perfect timing. You can elicit more conversations by implementing a system that notifies you when a lead displays red flag behaviors that signal their readiness to be contacted. Finally, you can hire additional staff to help you manage these systems—so you can focus on what matters most, meeting clients, managing transactions, and closing deals. With all the new business you'll generate from scaling your business, you might need to hire multiple agents to help support you. To view the original article, visit the Zurple blog.
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How to Start Your Own Blog
Why should you want to have your own blog? Because today, 90 percent of home buyers are searching online during their house hunt, according to Google and the National Association of Realtors. In addition, more than twice as many people start their search online versus contacting an agent. For real estate, building and maintaining your online presence is more important than ever. The good news is agents can raise their online presence in several ways. You can enhance your online activity by consistently engaging on social media channels such as Facebook and Instagram. With local video content, you can build a following on YouTube or TikTok. But if you want to boost your business and your online profile, your best investment of time may be starting a blog. After all, a study from Orbit Media shows that 54% of businesses who utilize blogging gain strong marketing results. Know before you start down the path of blogging this one fact: you must love to write (or at least be a competent writer). If it's a struggle for you to develop new ideas or find you are always "too busy to write," then don't blog. Where do you begin writing your blog? If you enjoy writing, blogging could become your "go-to" marketing tactic. But starting and writing a real estate blog means more than just whipping up a few paragraphs and posting it online to share with your audience. Successful bloggers recommend you avoid "writing just to write." Instead, focus on creating good quality writing rather than a longer word count. And you will need to be patient. Having a successful real estate blog won't happen overnight. Instead, you will undergo a process of trial and error to determine what most appeals to your client base and makes them want to come back again and again. The benefits can be well worth the time invested. A real estate blog can help you increase your online visibility while at the same time showcasing your talents and expertise. Unlike visibility achieved on social media, people spend more time on your site as they read what you have written. Therefore, traffic gains from blog posts are much more meaningful than traffic generated by paying to boost a social media post. The key to getting started is to create the proper foundation, invest time in planning a schedule, and find that unique "hook" your blog has that makes it stand out from others. Here are 6 essential tips you need to know to start your own blog: Write for your niche: When starting a blog, brainstorming is a core component to gather your ideas and figure out the best topics to attract readers. Therefore, you should write what you know. Focus on the real estate niche that's your specialty. It's easier to write a topic that you deep knowledgeable about, as it will help you avoid writer's block. Use a catchy title and click-worthy headlines: For your blog title and headlines for subsequent posts, you want them to be attention grabbing. Keep in mind that potential readers will quickly glance at the headline before deciding to click or not to click. The headline for all your blog posts needs to hook people into wanting to read the content, or your work will be for naught. So, don't just rush into writing the title. Instead, take your time and iterate. Keep your title short (less than ten words), make sure it connects to your main topic or theme, and that your target audience understands it. Maintain a schedule: Like becoming a perennial top producing agent, consistency is key. A lot of agents have started a blog with a single post and never wrote a second one. Committing to a schedule is critical when starting your blog. Create an editorial calendar or schedule with proposed topics and deadlines for first drafts and target dates for final posting. While you don't want to blog too frequently, you must avoid long gaps between your posts. Being inconsistent in posting is the fastest way to lose the interest of your audience: they will go elsewhere. The most successful bloggers post two to four times a week, but you are not a blogger. You are an agent who blogs. Once a week is great if you can maintain that pace to keep your clientele engaged, and hopefully, wanting more. Be straightforward: Good blogs are easy to read; they are not college essays. While it's important to provide in-depth information and be specific, you should avoid drag on. Be approachable in your posts. Sharing valuable info, focusing on your main idea, and not overselling or being self-promotional will earn a larger audience. Resonate with your audience: Visualize your favorite clients with whom you have worked with. These types of people are the kind of readers you want to attract to your blog. Put yourself in their shoes: what information are they most interested in? What are the most frequent questions they have? You don't have to appeal to everyone, but you need to know who you want to reach. Observe what other blogs cover: Top real estate blogs and news outlets like Inman, RE Technology, RISMedia, RealtyTimes, and others have a style and method for the subjects they pick. Pay attention to that. These firms invest a lot of money to create content that appeals to their target audiences: agents and brokers. Staying on top of real estate trends and industry news can help you write your blog. They also can help generate ideas, especially when you can find a local angle that relates to an important national topic or trend. Finally, remember that a Tech Helpline expert is only a call or click away when you have any general tech questions! To view the original article, visit the Tech Helpline blog.
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Guiding Sellers in a Seller's Market
A seller's market occurs when inventory of homes is low. There is more demand for home from buyers than there are home sellers on the market. This puts your sellers in the position of authority in deciding how the sale will go. A seller's market allows the seller to set the price and the terms, within reason. The seller has the freedom to choose from one of several buyers, motivating buyers to offer a better price and better terms. As real estate professionals, it is our duty to guide seller clients to make the best possible use of the seller's market. Let's dive into what's involved in guiding sellers through a home sale during a seller's market. The Seller's Market Strategy During a seller's market, it's important to have a strategy to produce best results. Sellers want to attract multiple competing buyers. Bidding wars drive the asking price upward and encourage more favorable terms as part of the deal to accept the bid. The more competition is created with buyers, the better deal you will find among their offers. Once you have a nice selection of buyers ready, you can guide your seller to choose the best bid and then negotiate from a position of strength for the best price and terms for your seller. Choosing Your Listing Price In a seller's market, listing prices go up. Start with the usual baseline numbers: The assayed value of the house, the home's last selling price, added value through renovations, and the recent selling price of similar homes in the neighborhood. There are two approaches to a competitive listing price. In a seller's market, you can list higher than the standard calculation, and challenge buyers to negotiate the price down. Or you can attract more buyers at once by setting the price slightly lower than expected and then negotiate the price up. Staging to Attract Multiple Buyers The best bids arrive when a home is staged to inspire the buyers that view and tour the property. While even shabby homes sell fast in a seller's market, the best price comes from buyers competing to submit the highest bid and best terms to the seller. The more buyers who are competing for a home at the same time, the better the final accepted bid will be. To this end, it's important to prepare and stage the home for presentation. Advise your client to repaint the walls, polish and steam the floors, and guide them through light staging. The budget of the client and size of the house will determine the correct amount of staging to invest in. Selecting the Best Bid and Buyer When your buyers start to bid, advise your client to wait until several bids have come in at once. There's no need to jump on the first bid unless it's already a much better deal than you expected. Buyers competing with each other will offer higher bids and better contract terms to win the opportunity to buy the house. Guide your seller to weigh the bids based on both their value and potential for negotiation. Help them choose the best bid and buyer of those available and let your buyer's agent know they've been chosen. Negotiating from a Position of Strength In negotiations, remind your client that they are in the position of strength. In a seller's market, the seller has more influence over the contract terms and can ask for more because the buyer is at a disadvantage. A good negotiation for the seller focuses on raising the selling price, sharing closing costs, and reducing any final maintenance costs or contingencies. That said, being flexible with your buyer in negotiations is also the best way to achieve a smooth and harmonious closing. So negotiate from a position of strength, but advise your seller not to disadvantage the buyer with terms if it can be avoided. Engaging a Smooth Closing Procedure Finally, smooth the closing process. Closing is the most hectic time for sellers and their agents because there is so much legal and financial paperwork to take care of in the process. Ideally, agents can make use of a closing platform like Transactly to minimize those many hours of tedious closing. Instead, that time can be spent helping your seller get squared away at the end of the sale. Prioritize face-to-face time and a satisfactory personal conclusion while well-designed software takes care of the tedious closing procedures. A seller's agent provides an invaluable service to home sellers, especially in a seller's market. Without your guidance, sellers wouldn't know how to get the best price for their homes, even when the advantage is on their side. Your hard work and professional guidance will ensure each of your seller clients is well served and gets the best price for each house sold. To view the original article, visit the Transactly blog.
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RPR's 10 Best Real Estate Apps for 2021
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Pinterest: The Social Platform Your Competition Has Overlooked
Pinterest is one of the best social platforms for real estate, and that's without taking into consideration that on Pinterest, your posts don't have the instant irrelevance that they do on other social channels. If utilized correctly, your Pinterest content will stay relevant for months or years after you post it, allowing this underutilized social platform to help you grow your social audience and drive quality buyers and sellers to your website. First things first: to take advantage of Pinterest, you need to set up an account. Create a business profile and then identify any content you already have on your website that Pinterest users may find interesting. Divide your content into categories and make Pinterest boards to hold your content. Keep in mind that Pinterest is a very visual social platform, so high-quality images, flyers, and infographics will likely get the most mileage on your Pinterest account. Some real estate topics Pinterest users may find interesting include house hunting tools, home renovation ideas, home decor, landscaping, and neighborhood hangouts. When creating this content, be sure to showcase how your real estate business fits into the lifestyle of buyers and sellers. For example, let Pinterest users looking at your renovation content know that you can find them a new home that fits their needs. Try to incorporate these topics in your website's blog and pin the articles to your Pinterest board. Be sure to include a button on your blog and website that your visitors can use to share your content on Pinterest as well. This will help your content reach an ever broader audience. Because your content may be shared by others, be sure your images include some form of branding so that as your images spread, people will know who the original source was and you can build brand recognition. You can also invest in Pinterest ads to reach a more targeted audience. To create an ad, visit ads.pinterest.com and select "Get started" and log in to your account. From there, choose whether you want to promote a pin or create a campaign and the ad builder will walk you through the rest. When choosing which content you want to promote, choose pins that are popular even without ads – they'll have a better chance of attracting the attention of the new people you reach. Also be sure the pin is linked back to a page on your website with lead capture capabilities. A landing page or lead capture form is ideal. Once you choose your pin, double check all the details, input your billing information, and wait for your ad to go live. It should be up within 24 hours, depending on when you set your ad to run. For more help with the ins and outs of Pinterest for real estate, download the free eBook, Meeting the Challenge: Pinterest for Business. This guide will show you how to get started with Pinterest, offer ideas for engagement opportunities, and discuss how your brand can be present and gain followers. To view the original article, visit the Homes.com blog.
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4 Strategies to Stay Top-of-Mind with Past Clients
You've spent endless amounts of time building a loyal clientele of luxury real estate buyers and sellers, but are you nurturing them? Today, technology makes it easier than ever to attract new clients and strengthen your existing relationships, which is the best thing you can do to simplify your business and tap into a high-quality source of referrals. Here are four ways to do just that: 1. Nurture clients with at least a monthly email Email is the easiest way to nurture clients both consistently and automatically. That means there's no way to forget, get too busy or overthink it. Keep in mind that nurturing clients doesn't just mean sending out emails featuring listings and open houses, but rather ones with useful content about the real estate market or lifestyle updates. This is a great way to remind clients of your expertise and value so that when you do send links to new listings or make a pitch, they'll be more likely to respond (or open the email in the first place). 2. Send an occasional gift Along with sending regular emails, your clients will appreciate the occasional small gift to remember their birthdays, anniversaries or show you're thinking of them during the holidays. Rather than simply sending flowers to clients' homes, sends flowers to their workplace, this way their colleagues will ask about the flowers. In turn, this leads to clients telling their colleagues about the amazing experience they had with you. Naturally, some of those colleagues then ask for your information the next time they need a real estate professional. 3. Plan a quarterly check-in call Unlike emails, nurturing clients with phone calls requires a little more effort, but gives you an opportunity to catch up in real time on a more personal level. Plus, a phone call is a great way to identify potential referral opportunities when they come up in conversation. Just remember, it's important to make these calls without the intention of booking an appointment or pitching your services. You want clients to feel like you're someone they can trust, so it's best to show a genuine interest in what your client has been up to since you last spoke. 4. Use social media Another easy way to stay top of mind? Social media. The idea isn't to post for the sake of posting, but to post for the sake of keeping your market expertise visible. Just like with emails, you'll want to share valuable content rather than simply sharing listings or pitching your services—and don't be afraid to work your own personal story and personality into your posts, either. While you don't want to "overshare" or come off as unprofessional, you do want to share enough of yourself to help you stand out from the crowd and make it easy for clients to connect with, relate to and respect you. For more information, or to give Amarki a try, visit our website HERE. About Amarki: Amarki was built by real estate experts for brokerages and agents based on years of industry experience and firsthand feedback. We developed a marketing tool accessible to anyone, no matter the experience or marketing budget. By providing an intuitive tool that works "for" the agent, Amarki is able to remove the complexity of marketing tasks making agents more active. Check us out HERE.
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How to Optimize Your Real Estate Video Marketing
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Close the Year Strong: 5 Ways to Regroup, Recharge and Reach Goals
Summer is sailing by and Q4 is looming. Are you on track to hit your 2021 goals, or is time to reevaluate your actions and priorities to catch up? Here are five ways to make sure you're doing everything, and have everything you need to achieve in 2021. 1. Double Down on Lead Generation Many are scaling back on their ad spend, but this is prime time to build that database, and prepare for the market to shift. So many claim this as the "height of the market," so consumers are stalling, but the buyers will be back, and you need to have the tech and the teams in place to make sure you're there first. Many of our top-performing clients have begun doubling their ad spend for buyer leads. They're playing the long game and front-loading their database to get ahead of the market. 2. Audit Your Technology Solutions Are your tech solutions working for you? Has your team adopted the systems? Now is a key time to take a hard look at the systems you have in place to see where some gaps might be. An issue we see a lot is disparate systems and point solutions that aren't communicating with each other, and keeping data in the corner. Audit your software and services and make sure you're leveraging them to improve your service offering. Make sure they're taking work off your plate, and not adding to it. Investing time in getting this right this means you can step back from the whirlwind. It means your direct involvement in every fire drill is unnecessary, and the fire drills are few and far between. It also means that your team understands the expectations and they "why." They know that when A happens, the next step is B, and then we move to C. Streamlining your systems with a state-of-the-art CRM that houses everything and connects to your favorite point solutions is the way to win. It's one log in. One data dashboard. One place for your database and marketing tools. One winning business plan in one place. 3. Optimize Your Time and Delegate Tom Ferry often talks about the "It's Gotta Be Me" mindset. You need to make sure you're not in it. If you're bogged down in the administrative work in your business, not focusing on your dollar-productive activities, then you're stifling your growth. For example, Ferry shared that there are 11 hours of work involved to close out a file during every side of a real estate transaction. How many of those 11 hours are you involved in? The best answer here is "None, Tom! I outsource it all!" On average, BoomTown customers report that they are empowered to spend 50% more time on dollar-productive activities. Hot leads are prioritized, systems are optimized for accountability, and agents are freed up from admin work. There's a proven formula for success: prioritizing your time based on your most dollar-productive activities, leveraging the value of your database, and diversifying and growing your lead sources. Most real estate professionals are experts in their field, but that doesn't mean they're experts at digital marketing, or necessarily need to flex their expertise to nurture buyers and sellers who are far-out in the buying or selling process. 4. Reinvigorate Your Marketing Markets are crowded, competition is fierce, and you need to differentiate your real estate business. So how can you cut through the noise and set yourself apart from the competition without putting more work on your plate and trying to make time appear out of nowhere? Smart tech and customizable marketing can cut through the digital noise, differentiate you from the competition, and build trust. Launch custom landing pages to target buyers and sellers in refreshing ways (digitally!) Create automated drip campaigns keep your leads engaged, and you top-of-mind Engage and re-engage with social media ads that you can create and promote with just a few clicks 5. Surround Yourself with a Success Network Partnership power. Make sure you're surrounded by the people who will support you and drive you forward. Team members, industry peers, coaches, and tech partners that help you learn, grow, and give you the opportunity to collaborate with like-minded professionals you can learn from. Attend real estate conferences, join social media groups, and networking meetings, sign up with a coach or mentor to get the support and accountability you need to go higher. We're fresh off of our user conference, Unite, and it's incredible to see what can be achieved when you're surrounded by people who can lift you up, and share their success. Ready to put that in place in your business? Let's get started. To view the original article, visit the BoomTown blog.
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How to Add Infographics to Your Real Estate Marketing Strategy
Although the marketing world is constantly in flux, one thing is for sure--we are more visual than ever before. These days, we prefer to consume information in graphical ways that are easily digestible and shareable across different channels, which explains why infographics have become such a popular content marketing tool. In fact, according to HubSpot, an infographic is 30 times more likely to be read than pure text. Real estate infographics, in particular, are a powerful and persuasive way to repurpose old content, generate new leads, draw referrals, and inform your audience. Here are Different Infographics Real Estate Agents Can Share: Market Reports Since real estate agents should have information about their communities readily available to their leads already, that data can be easily converted into a visual display that both buyers and sellers will find helpful. Lists By their very nature, lists lend themselves easily to infographics. But the goal is to make them more eye-catching by incorporating more visual elements. For example, icons can replace bullet points and various fonts and colors can be used make each line stand out. Community Information An informational infographic template is the best choice for clearly communicating a specialized concept and a great way to show off your understanding of your local markets. Typically, this type of infographic is divided into sections that include descriptive headers with numbered sections that help the design flow. Statistics Real estate data pulled from multiple sources are best represented via statistical infographics. They can make otherwise uninteresting presentations and statistics more palatable to your audience. Plus, you can use the layout and visuals to help you tell the story behind your data. Storytelling devices include icons, pie charts, graphs, timelines, hierarchies, images, and fonts. Common Buyer and Seller Questions There are certain questions that homebuyers and homeowners will inevitably ask you. What are common mistakes that sellers make? Is it better to buy or rent? These questions can all be answered with an inforaphic. If you include these infographics in your email or social media marketing campaigns, you can save time by answering the question before it's even asked! As technology continues to evolve and advance, visual content should be at the forefront of your marketing strategy. Infographics have grown to be an indispensable part of a modern content marketing. In order to stay ahead of the competition, be sure to maximize your real estate branding efforts by highlighting key data points and keeping your infographic design simple and clean, and the text useful and valuable. Here is a FREE video infographic for you to download: Click to download the Seller Mistakes Video Infographic. To view the original article, visit the Zurple blog.
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Twitter and Facebook Newsletters, Google Core Update: Everything Real Estate Agents Need to Know
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How Rookie Real Estate Agents Can Survive in Any Market
Starting out as a real estate agent is difficult, no matter what market you're kick starting your career in. You want to hit the ground running and establish yourself as an industry professional -- while keeping the long-term goals in mind. It's like any rookie professional athlete starting out in the big leagues going against veterans who have years of experience under their belt – and how to properly play the game. Here is a roadmap for rookie real estate agents to thrive in a competitive market.
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Tips for Staying Safe During Showings (and Beyond)
Real estate agent safety is an important topic that is often overlooked in many discussions. While no one plans to be in a dangerous situation, agents should be prepared for any possibility. In the most recent Secrets of Top Selling Agents webinar, "Don't Be a Statistic," Jay Thompson shares some of his best safety tips to help agents be more aware and create a safety plan. Entering the real estate industry in 2004, Thompson started out in the Phoenix, Arizona market. He worked three years as an agent before transitioning to open his own independent brokerage. In 2012, Thompson switched roles and began working for Zillow as their Directory of Industry Outreach, a position he held for seven years until his retirement. While Thompson jokes that he is "retired," he currently owns his own consulting business and shares his knowledge of real estate with weekly news articles. He prides himself for his role on the Beverly Carter Foundation's board of directors, whose purpose is to raise awareness about "lone worker" safety. Safety is all about awareness At the beginning of his webinar, Thompson shares that real estate agents are often called "lone workers," because they spend many of their working hours alone. Agents are often put in vulnerable situations, as they're showing homes to and hosting open houses for strangers. Thompsons mentions that they are most vulnerable when they are showing homes, as they're alone with a stranger at a property. While women in the real estate industry are targeted more often, many men are victims as well. Thompson stresses that, while most agents will not have an issue with their safety being compromised, it's better to be knowledgeable and prepared. He suggests that it may be useful to think about potential situations and rehearse a script of what you would say if ever faced with an off-putting client. Thompson likens this to agents preparing an objection script and says a similar idea could be applied. The reaction could come more naturally if you've prepared, as the muscle memory—both physical and mental—would be there. Go with your gut Overall, Thompson says that "awareness is the key" when preventing these types of situations. By understanding when and how these threats take place, agents can be more prepared and hopefully avoid these safety risks. One of Thompson's main points is, "if something doesn't feel right, there's a very good chance that it's not right." He also tells listeners to "trust your gut," because human instinct is usually right. He assures listeners that if they act on an instinct and they're wrong, the outcome is far better than if they didn't act and they were right. "It's far better to err on the side of safety and awareness than it is to fall victim to someone," Thompson comments. Be proactive rather than reactive It's important to be proactive rather than reactive. When you're reactive, you're already in that situation to begin with and need to find a way out. Thompson says it's better to pay attention to the warning signs in order to avoid the situation altogether. When you're at an open house, it's important to practice situational awareness. Situational awareness means being aware of the situation that you're in. Thompson gives an example of this by describing a training exercise in which a person enters a room for 15 seconds and is then asked to give details about the room. At an open house, for example, be aware of all the entrances, find out whether the neighbors will be home, and locate the closest police station. Beware of financial scammers While physical safety is a top concern, Thompson mentions agents should also consider their financial safety, especially for crimes like wire fraud. He uses the example of a scammer sending an email from what appears to be a title company asking buyers to send their banking information to complete their transaction. Agents should be screening their messages and keep in mind that almost every institution will never ask for secure information through text or email. Safety solutions Thompson offers a few different options for reactionary safety measures. However, he stresses that these options are still not foolproof and are not preventative measures. He says that they're better than nothing, but they aren't the best. Forewarn is a preventative app that offers an easy way to do a background check on a potential client. While Thompons encourages agents to set up an initial public meeting for a new client, he says that this app will use a client's phone number to check public databases to see whether the person has a criminal history. Real Safe Agent is another preventative app, but this one is community based. While it offers some basic background checks, its main feature is you can use it to send a message to agents near your location, asking someone close to check in and pretend they're previewing the listing. It also lets agents rank local clients and give information about their exchange history. Invisiwear is a wearable that comes in the form of jewelry. If an agent feels like they're in danger, they can squeeze the pendant and it will alert 911 that they need help. Wearsafe is another wearable and comes as a FOB that can be clipped onto a purse, belt, pocket, etc. It can also alert the police or a contact if a dangerous situation arises. Thompson mentions that there are many weapons options, including handguns, pepper spray, self-defense classes, etc. A concealed weapon is a potential safety solution, but agents have to practice with it and be prepared to use it. Thompson says that "you better train a lot and you better train frequently." However, he also reminds listeners that an assailant can take a weapon away and use it against you. He states that it's a tool, but it's not a guarantee of safety. Overall, agents should review safety protocols, trainings, and checklists to help prepare and become more aware of their safety. To learn more of Thompson's safety tips, you can join the Secrets of Top Selling Agents Facebook Group here. For more free real estate education, including best practices, visit the Secrets of Top Selling Agents website. To view the original article, visit the Homes.com blog.
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How to Build Your Online Branding
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6 Tips for Realtors to Generate Real Estate Leads Online
Ryan, a Realtor in Raleigh, North Carolina, offers agent advice about best ways to generate real estate leads online. Here's Ryan: Struggling to generate real estate leads? Generating leads takes a lot of time and effort, and you won't see immediate results. However if you stay with it, the results will pay off handsomely. How does a couple new leads per day sound? If you aren't already using these strategies for generating leads online, you should consider starting today. 6 Strategies for Generating Real Estate Leads Online 1. Start a hyperlocal real estate website If you're going to have any sort of success generating quality real estate leads online, you are going to need a website. Having a hyperlocal real estate website should be the center of everything you do online. Once you get your site up and running, you should constantly be sending people to your site as a way for them to search for local listings or to gather valuable real estate information from the articles you write on your blog. 2. Blog about everything real estate Providing your local buyers and sellers with monthly real estate market reports is a great way to engage with your audience. You can also write for people who might be moving to your area. We recently wrote an article for anyone moving to Raleigh so they could learn more about the city before relocating. The articles on your website will help you generate leads every day. 3. Leverage social media Staying top of mind is one of the most important ways for real estate agents to gather referral business. Communicating a valuable message wins over new business. When someone hears someone else say, "I'm thinking about buying a house or selling my home," they remember your Facebook article 10 Things Realtors Do to Sell Your Home or your helpful First Time Home Buyer's Guide. Providing value to your audience gives you an opportunity to earn more referral business. By communicating a value added message, you get people to share it with their friends! 4. Take advantage of Facebook ads Facebook ads are a great way to brand yourself and stay in front of consumers. People check Facebook multiple times a day and when they see your sponsored ad, they become familiar with you. Not only that, you can set up Facebook ads to be highly targeted. The customization options for your ad are incredible. 5. Build valuable relationships online One of the best things you can do is build relationships with everyone online. This means engaging your network with likes, comments and shares. People love to be noticed and liked. When you comment on a friend's picture, you are showing up on other people's newsfeeds and your friend will appreciate you staying in touch. That friend is also more likely to like your pictures when you post. By engaging in the comments section, you have an opportunity to interact with that friend's friends as well. 6. Give back to others One of the best things you can do to secure relationships, whether online or offline, is to give back to others. Think of how you can help others before you think about how others can help you. When you give back to others in your community or across the world, you're building a much stronger network. By giving back to others you will see fantastic results. Final thoughts Generating leads online doesn't have to be hard. It starts with a great website and utilizing the tips above. Thanks to being engaging and generous, you will have numerous people reaching out to you when they need a trusted real estate agent. It can be intimidating at first especially if it's new to you, and you're concerned with what people think about your articles. You can't grow unless you step outside your comfort zone. Give it a try! Learn more about Ryan on his website: raleighrealtyhomes.com. Here is a handy visual of all the tips above. Pin it away! To view the original article, visit the Zurple blog.
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What Are the Most Requested Home Qualities that Buyers and Sellers Are Looking for?
Welcome to the latest installment of "Ask the Industry," where we ask real estate professionals their thoughts about timely topics related to the real estate industry. Today's post features: Marian Cooper, Realtor with Comey & Shepherd Randall Graham, Chief Marketing Officer with Michael Saunders & Company Stacey Burnett, Agent with RE/MAX Crossroads Properties What are the most frequently requested qualities that buyers and sellers are looking for in a home right now? Buyers want updated homes and turnkey properties Marian Cooper, Realtor, Comey & Shepherd, Greater Cincinnati, OH The most requested qualities my homebuyers are looking for right now include: 2+ bathrooms Finished basement Open floor plan Garage Swimming pool or enough space for a pool to eventually be added Also, overwhelmingly my buyers seem to prefer updated homes at the moment. They seem to be OK with some small cosmetic changes, but most of my clients right now want a turnkey property. Buyers are looking for homes with great outdoor spaces Randall Graham, Chief Marketing Officer, Michael Saunders & Company, Sarasota, FL At Michael Saunders & Company, we are seeing buyers on Southwest Florida's Gulf Coast looking for homes with great outdoor spaces and water views, which is the unique beauty of our area. We've also seen a shift from wanting turnkey properties to buyers returning to the idea of making updates as lumber and other building materials are becoming more available. Newer construction, privacy and safety remain our top requests as well. It's all about the location – Buyers are starting to look at areas that they may not normally look Stacey Burnett, Agent, RE/MAX Crossroads Properties, Cleveland, OH I would have to say that in the current market, the qualities a buyer is searching for most include an updated kitchen and bathroom, an open floor plan, and flex/bonus space for a possible office. Outdoor space is a plus as well for those fur babies. Since our inventory is so low, buyers are starting to look into areas that they may not normally look at but are just as nice. It's about the location! Last, but not least, is a garage! We are in Cleveland and this is a must-have for some buyers. To view the original article, visit the Homesnap blog.
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Best Images to Use for Your Real Estate Listings
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Friday Freebie: Cheat Sheet for Talking Sellers Off the Fence
There are a lot of reasons that homeowners today are reluctant to sell--they're afraid they won't find a new home to buy, they like their current mortgage rate, etc. How you respond to their objections could win you a shiny new listing. But what if you're unsure of your powers of persuasion? Lean on this week's Friday Freebie—a cheat sheet designed to help you talk reluctant sellers off the fence. Free Download of the 2021 Home Seller Cheat Sheet, courtesy of Zurple It's a great time to sell a home, and a great time to be a listing agent...if you can find a listing. People are staying in their current homes longer than ever and many are reluctant to sell. You may even be talking with homeowners who are toying with the idea of selling, but aren't quite convinced. How do you convince them? Zurple's 2021 Home Seller Cheat Sheet to the rescue! This free download offers information you can reference to help persuade homeowners to sell, including: Common seller objections and how to overcome them Statistics, information, and articles to motivate sellers off the fence Tactics for convincing owners to sell (like recommending contract contingencies) Processes and strategies for selling during COVID-19 And more! You can use this cheat while on the phone with a seller, on a Zoom call, or even keep it on your phone to reference anytime you need it. You'll always have the perfect comeback to any objection ready when you download the 2021 Home Seller Cheat Sheet!
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7 Emails You Need to Send to Real Estate Leads
Consider the emails you're sending to your leads. Would you open them if they appeared in your inbox? More importantly, would you respond or visit a website? Prospects these days have an inbox full of info and offers, most of which they will consider "junk," and delete. This is why you have to follow the best practices to help your email outshine the rest. Readers don't delete emails that interest them. Easy as that. The seven emails below will help you earn your way into their inbox. 1. The Introduction Email We strongly suggest only emailing leads who have opted into communication with you. Otherwise, it can feel like an invasion of personal space. This first email serves as the "welcome mat" for the rest of your email communication. Don't overwhelm with too much information! Instead, quickly and casually introduce yourself and give a short snippet of what you can offer them. Start by asking yourself the questions below: Who are you? Why are you emailing them? What value are you providing to them? Introduction Email Example: Hi Cindy, I noticed you recently registered for e-Alerts on my website. I'm glad you signed up, as this is the quickest way to receive up-to-date information on listings in your area! Our website is refreshed every hour, so you will be the first to know when a home that fits your preferences hits the market. Over the past seven years, I have worked in the area selling homes and helping buyers find the perfect property. Buying a home is an exciting time and I am here to help you navigate through the process. Below I have linked to one of my blog posts about preparing to buy a home and how it is different this year over the others. Read More: How to Prepare Yourself to Buy a Home This Year Have a lovely day, Annie Agent 2. The "Establish Expectations" Email The Welcome Email should go out almost immediately after you receive their information or when they register on your site. The Establish Expectations Email should follow in the next day or two, and will answer the following: How frequently you will be in touch? What action should the lead take? Are you showing your value as an agent? Establish Expectations Email Example: Hi Cindy, I hope your home search is going well! As of now, you are set up to receive emails when your preferred listings come on the market. I'll keep you in the loop with any important market information that may help with your search as well. If you'd like to see a home, please don't hesitate to reach out at (###) ###-####. My door is always open at the office as well! Continue Searching For Homes I'll be in touch, Annie Agent This email reaffirms why you're reaching out, and then follows up with another call-to-action. These are important steps! Here are a few pointers for what you should be accomplishing with each email: Provide a valuable offer of information or service to your lead. Make it easy to take action with a clear link or button. Do NOT make it all about you. This completely defeats the purpose. Remember, you have to EARN your way into their Inbox. Just as any other business or service earns their way into your readership.  3. The Content Email Here is where we engage the lead through valuable information. You can send the Content Email in the form of a regularly scheduled newsletter, or save yourself some time and plug it into an email drip campaign. You want to provide value through content you aggregate or already have on your site. The best option is to combine the two! These emails allow you to establish yourself as the local expert. Consider including any of the following: Local Market Updates Average Days On Market Breakdown Seller Market Versus Buyer Market Explanation How to Buy a Home in the Current Market One of Your Sold Listings (if it is a seller lead) Area Events Calendar New Development Updates Fixer-Upper Average Costs Turning Your Home Into the Ultimate Investment Showcase all of the best content that you're sharing on your website, blog, and social media channels. The goal is to get the lead to interact with you, so it can be useful here to usher them to other channels where you share information. Link to one of your posts or events on Facebook and try to get them to "like" your page. Let them know if you're "going live," or connect them to a blog post through a Twitter or LinkedIn link. If you really want to up your game, sites such as Canva can help you create quick and easy, professional-looking images. People respond to visual stimuli! In the end, put yourself in their shoes: If you opened this email, does the content really add value? Nobody needs fluff. 4. The Testimonial Email Now we're really heading in the right direction. You want to have a nice mix of content emails, and more personal information. At the end of the day, you are trying to get this lead to convert! The testimonial emails really take your marketing email marketing efforts to the next level. Remember, testimonials are an incredibly valuable tool to prove YOU are the right person for the job. However, you don't want it to come across as too "in-your-face." Here are a few pointers for accomplishing that balance. Do: Include recent testimonials. Frame a story around the testimonial. Relate your testimonials to current market updates. Use them as a call to action. (Meaning, include a link to your website where they can read more, or a phone number to speak with you.) Don't: Only include testimonials in the email. Put a seller testimonial in a buyer's email drip campaign. Use an outdated or unrelated testimonial. Place testimonials in the email without any context. Testimonial Email Example: Hi Cindy, I hope you have been able to browse some of the market updates I sent over in my last email. If not, I have a blog post here explaining the current market and how to position yourself as the best buyer in the lot. In this market, it often comes down to negotiations between agents in order to close the deal on a home. And I wanted you to hear a few stories about how I've helped some locals find their perfect properties over the past few months. "Annie worked magic in a market where I never thought I would be able to afford my dream home. She managed the process from start to finish and my family and I could not be happier." -The Jones Family "My home search was full of ups and downs, but Annie never stopped in the search for our home. After helping us sell our current home and find the new place, we could not have asked for a better experience." -Matthew Trice Browse more testimonials on my website here. Starting the search is the first step in finding your perfect property, and I am here to help! Talk soon, Annie Agent 5. The "Get to Know You" Email This email is your opportunity to gather more information about your lead. Up to this point, you may have an email, home search preferences, or a phone number. If you have already spoken, then this email should be more specific to their wants and needs. But if you have not spoken to them yet, use this as your chance to figure out how to customize your value proposition. Try to drive a conversation. These "\Get to Know You emails should be sent within a few weeks of your Welcome email and will also help you to gather specific information about your target audience. According to the Content Marketing Institute: 86% of people skip TV commercials. 44% of direct mail is never opened. 91% of email users have unsubscribed from a company email they previously opted into. Bottom line: let your readers be in control of their content! Get to Know You Email Example: Hi Cindy, I want to make sure I am sending along the right information to help you with your home-buying decisions. In order for me to show you the best homes available, I'd love to speak with you about your home search. My number is (###) ### – #### if you would like to give me a call. If it's easier, you can reach me at this email! The Ten Most Commonly Asked Questions in Home Buying The Homebuyer Checklist: Everything from Pre-approval to Post Purchase Taxes Please don't hesitate to reach out! Annie Agent 6. The Oh So Subtle "I-Haven't-Heard-From-You" Email We are all wired to get excited when someone likes a status on Facebook, or shares your post on Twitter. So when we don't hear back from leads it becomes frustrating fast. Keep in mind you are approaching strangers in very personal space: their inbox. If you have made it this far and they haven't unsubscribed or marked your emails as spam, then they are keeping you around for a reason. This email is your chance to really pique their interest. Consider including any of the following: Invitation or incentive to use at a local event. Reminder of the tools you have available on your site. Inspirational and recent testimonial. Inquiry into whether or not they still want to receive emails or e-alerts. First Example Hi Cindy, I hope all is well with you and you are seeing a few homes that pique your interest on the site. In case anything has changed, you can easily update your preferences in order to receive properties better catered to your search. Please reply to this email if you would like to be removed from e-alerts and I can do that for you! Change Your Preferences Here! Best, Second Example Hi Cindy, I hope all is well with you and you are seeing a few homes that pique your interest on the site. In other news, we will be at the Downtown Carnival Extravaganza this week running a raffle! We'll have an extra t-shirt waiting on you, so feel free to stop by our booth any time. [Insert Event Image Here] Hope to see you there! 7. The "Request-a-Review" Email Also known as the post-deal email, this is your chance to congratulate your client on their closed deal and inquire about a review. Keep in mind after your client either buys or sells their home the emails are not over. You should have a drip campaign ready to go in order to keep your name top of mind for the years to come. Until then though, you need to ask for a review. "Request-a-Review" Email Example: Hi Cindy, Congratulations! I am so excited for you about your home purchase. This is a big deal and you should be extremely proud of yourself for owning your first home. I will drop by a little gift from our company to you later this week, but until then I wanted to ask a quick favor. As you know, it always helps to have a few nice words to share with future clients. And if you would be so kind as to share a few words about your experience via email or online here, that would be wonderful! Let Us Know How We Did Here! And again, don't forget to submit your permanent residence application this month. We will be in touch to remind you when the date comes closer for that as well. Congratulations again! Agent Annie How to Order Your Email Drip Campaigns The number of emails and order of those emails in a drip campaign are specific to your audience. Leads who wanted to buy yesterday should receive emails more frequently, whereas casual browsers should receive at minimum a monthly check-in. No matter the email, always remember our three rules for all communications: Provide value Make it easy to take action Do NOT make it all about you Happy writing! To view the original article, visit the BoomTown blog.
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How to Humanize Your Digital Business
"Silence, brand!" If you've spent much time on social media over the last few years, you've probably seen this answer to branded content. It's a snappy retort to what many see as the increasingly unctuous and unwelcome expansion of corporate narratives into social spaces, leaving us subject to advertising seemingly every minute of every day. To a growing number of people — including many of your future customers — the idea that Wendy's is our wisecracking hipster friend or we're "in this together" with Toyota or United Airlines isn't just unconvincing: it's downright nauseating. The more brands clamor to sound just like us, the more robotic and intrusive it all feels. Many internet users are covering their ears and averting their eyes rather than engage with it. Into this world of "corporate personhood" run amok steps the real estate agent or broker. It's a well-known fact that many real estate agents get a substantial quantity of their leads by promoting their listings on digital channels, especially social media. Some experts have estimated that out of all professional industries, real estate experts are the most active on social media. Going without a robust online presence simply isn't an option. The question, then, is how you can humanize your digital business. Luckily, you have some natural advantages that can serve you well. The Human Connection Just Comes Easier for Real Estate Agents Luckily, you have the potential to go right where so many others go wrong. Real estate professionals stand out from the pack online for a variety of reasons: Meaningful, one-to-one relationships are at the heart of all they do By practicing their skills, they help others to achieve life goals Their local knowledge, style, and passion are unique to them With all of this in mind, you should get excited about the huge potential the digital world holds in store. Your consistent, trustworthy online presence is an extension of your in-person relationship building. Over time, that online activity provides the momentum that brings a steady stream of leads to your door. That's crucial to building a lucrative, sustainable business that offers work-life balance. Let's look at some of the ways you can ensure your digital brand has the human touch: Prefer Your Face to Your Logo Whenever possible, show your face, not your logo. A logo can be anyone, but your face is yours alone. This is crucial when deciding on social media avatars, your header photos on Twitter and Facebook, and more. When someone visits your website home page, be sure they see smiling faces — either yours or your customers'. Share Stories from Actual Customers Customer success stories are the most important form of social proof. While many visitors will check out your reputation on third-party review sites, you should also include testimonials directly on your social media and real estate website. Written testimonials work well, but aspire to showcase your biggest wins on video. Be an Advocate for Your Community Your value as a real estate agent is inseparable from the community where you practice. Use your digital presence to become a trusted guide to what makes your area special. Producing content about local events, top restaurants, and other amenities shows that you truly care about the place where you do your work. Use Video Marketing to Build Rapport Video marketing is the next best thing to being there. It is a wise idea to record a video introducing yourself and your practice in your own words for your site's home page. Video tours of homes and neighborhoods are also very effective. This content helps newcomers feel like they already know you. Connect with Cards and Mementos Of course, no brand is digital alone — and what you do outside the confines of the internet can enrich both your business and your customers' lives. Following up with former customers is essential to referral business, so don't be afraid to invest time in a handwritten card or include a small, meaningful gift. Mark Special Occasions Holidays are the cultural touchstones we all share, while anniversaries are meaningful moments in an individual relationship. Honor both of them by producing tasteful seasonal content for your website and social media. At the same time, don't forget to acknowledge past customers on, for example, the anniversary of closing day. Consider Using Text Messages Text messaging is quickly developing into one of the most intimate ways to start conversations with leads. Asking a quick question can revive cold leads, but it's also a great way to let others know you're looking out for them. Marketing automation technology doesn't get in the way of relationships; it helps you manage and deepen them. RE Technology readers can try DeltaNET 6 FREE for 30 days. To view the original article, visit the Delta Media Group blog.
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Thinking of Joining a Real Estate Team? Consider the Pros and Cons
There are many different paths to take when you begin a career in the real estate world. One important decision you'll make is whether to go solo or join a team. Everyone has different priorities and goals when it comes to mapping out their career, so your decision is unique to you. For example, a rookie agent will want to look for a brokerage with high brand awareness or mentoring, while a veteran agent might be looking for new marketing tools or digital marketing training. In this article, you'll learn the pros and cons of joining a real estate team to help you decide if it's best for your growth as an agent. Pros of Joining a Real Estate Team 1. Great way to start new career You have a lot to learn as a new agent. The majority of your initial learning experience will come from your license exam, observation, and trial-and-error. By working with a team of like-minded individuals, you can learn from your colleagues' mistakes and successes, have opportunities to brainstorm new ideas, and practice role playing. Since you'll have an existing database to work with, a lot of your lead generation will be done on your behalf through your broker. Typically, this means you'll have to pay financial dues or a portion of your commission to the broker. 2. Receive training and support Most free online learning resources aren't comprehensive and require a fee for secret strategies that have a real impact. Having veteran agents to work with makes a huge difference at the start of your career. Many unexpected questions and scenarios will come up when you start as an agent, but fortunately a veteran agent can help you navigate. Even better, find a mentor that will take you under their wing, teach you the ins and outs, give you blunt feedback, and share their secrets of success. 3. Time off is easier Agents who fail on their own often find it harder to take a break. Being part of a real estate team allows you to enjoy flexibility a bit more. For example, if you are out of the office, someone will be there to take a message or help a client for you. 4. Business expenses are lower Shared expenses means less money out of pocket for you. Many of your fees can be split with the team as well as your office space. It's amazing how many fees agents are hit with throughout the year. Sharing these expenses can help your bottom line. 5. Available resources, tools, and scripts Most teams will provide marketing tools and educational material to help you be successful. For example, some teams provide templates and scripts for their agents to leverage to sharpen their skills. Many teams offer digital marketing tools like a website with a CRM. As a new agent, you will try new tactics, add your own flare, and keep the ones that resonate with you the most. 6. Established team branding If you don't have any personal branding, you should consider finding a team with quality branding in your market to bandwagon until you are more established. Do your research! Review their customer and employee testimonials, and their Google search ranking to help you determine which one will be best for you. Cons of Joining a Real Estate Team 1. You have less control of your branding For the creative and marketing minded agent, teams can often be a bit restrictive. You won't have individual control of you own branding and will only be able to market yourself under the team name and logo. 2. Commission is less Unlike a solo agent, you will have to share your commission with multiple members of the team. 3. You must mesh with team culture Just like any office, you are going to need to make sure that the team is the right fit for you. Fitting in with the team culture is extremely important for continued success. 4. A weak member can hurt the entire team The mistakes made by an individual greatly impact the team. They say "you are only as strong as your weakest link," and with a real estate team, this old adage holds true. 5. Cost-benefit of desk fees How much will it cost to have a desk in your team's office? Does the fee outweigh the benefits? Determine the monetary value of each benefit such as the factors listed above. If your desk fees are more than the benefits than that real estate team might not be worth your time. Don't get overwhelmed! Many agents change their teams for different reasons and you can always move to a different one. To help you choose the one that is right for you initially, consider the benefits that they offer such as mentoring, training, their branding, their resources, and fees. Most importantly—do your research and invest in a real estate team that is willing to invest in you. To view the original article, visit the TorchX blog.
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How to Drive Multiple Offers
Getting multiple offers on your listing is the ideal situation, but it is not as easy as just posting for sale and putting the sign in the front yard. Luckily, there are some things you can be doing (or that need to happen) to increase the chances of getting multiple offers on your listing. Seller's Market The biggest impact will be the market conditions the home sells in. Currently we are in a "seller's market" where there is limited inventory of houses for sale, but lots of buyers out looking and ready to purchase—so this part is already in place for us! Price It Right! Commonly, the largest mistake we at Amarki see most people make is pricing their listing incorrectly. It is difficult for sellers to separate the emotions of selling their home and determining its value. Added to that, most people feel pricing their home a bit higher so they can negotiate down to the price they really want is the way to go. In fact, the strategy is the complete opposite if you want multiple offers. The best tactic is to price your listing lower to get more people interested, which is the trigger to get them competing and driving up the price to more than what you were expecting! Show It Off This tip is easy and probably the most obvious, but make sure your listing is showing as nicely as it can—cleaned up, fresh paint, clutter removed. Follow that up with great photos showing off your listing and you are on the right track. Have ALL the Information Amarki suggests that having all the information a buyer may ask for ready in advance is key to ensuring there are no reasons to wait to submit an offer. This includes everything from the neighborhood, schools, taxes paid, etc. Some even do the inspection in advance so they can show potential buyers the results. Think ahead about what a buyer may ask and make sure you have the answer. Exposure, Exposure, Exposure! Lastly, and most importantly, ensure your listing is seen by everyone looking. In today's world, this means being everywhere on the internet by doing some digital marketing of the property. The more people that see it, the more people will come by and look at it—all leading to more interest and multiple offers. In today's world, you want to think about email campaigns, social posts, text campaigns—and even some Google ads. If this is new to you, don't worry. There are lots of tools out there, like Amarki, that can help you get started with little time or effort and for less than $10 a month. The more you market, the more interest you create. For more information, or to book a free marketing workshop with Amarki, book a time HERE. Or give Amarki a try and visit the website HERE. About Amarki: Amarki was built by real estate experts for brokerages and agents based on years of industry experience and firsthand feedback. We developed a marketing tool accessible to anyone, no matter the experience or marketing budget. By providing an intuitive tool that works "for" the agent, Amarki is able to remove the complexity of marketing tasks making agents more active. Check us out at HERE.
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BoxBrownie Releases Its 2021 Listing Visual Marketing Analysis
Here's a terrific report from BoxBrownie about the best ways to visually promote your listings for all ages. You can read an excerpt from the Preface below and then download the full report here. I have heard a lot of criticism of the National Association of Realtors over the past five years in the USA. Of the many countries I have travelled to, the NAR would have to be the organisation providing the greatest benefit to its members that I have ever seen. One of the most under-rated pieces of information the NAR dutifully release annually is the Home Buyers and Sellers Generational Trends report. I cannot speak highly enough of the value of the data released in this report and I personally wished my home country had equivalent data available to agents in order to assist us in sculpting business direction. Staggeringly, I would estimate the members who would know about this report and understand its value to be in the minority. Since 2013, annually this report has shone a light on the website features a purchaser would want to see in their efforts to purchase a property (page 59). Even at the quickest glance, the report tells us a few things: 89% of all purchasers regardless of age wish to see Photos of a listing 67% of all purchasers regardless of age wish to see Floor Plans of a listing 58% of all purchasers regardless of age wish to see a Virtual Tour of a listing These three figures are slightly higher than they have been over the past years, which I could argue might be the influence of being in a year of lockdowns and more difficult access to properties for inspection. However, none of them are out of order with the previous five years and more worth of data this annual survey has collected. If you look at the entire list there are some categories that I have always found humorous, for example, "Real Estate Agent Contact Information." I would assume for this to be on the list, at number 4, there is conceivably some agents not handing out their information to purchasers? Where I come from that person is unlikely to be an agent for very long. A Marketing Plan Over a period of time, I took the NAR report and paraphrased page 59 to formulate a plan for agents to follow in order to maintain consistency or marketing/brand and to sell a property for more, faster. In order of priority, relating to what the purchaser wishes to see, it is our belief at BoxBrownie.com that "best practice" agents have a marketing plan that looks like this: Good imagery Copy with all essential detail A floor plan 360°/virtual tour Video footage The research conducted investigates only three of the above aspects of visual marketing for a listing; Good Imagery, Floor Plans, and 360°/Virtual Tours. This research report is not to point people to BoxBrownie.com’s services. However, through the services we offer, I believe we are best positioned to shine a light on these practices. And whilst it is true that we have a solution for some of these issues, other companies do as well. Our message to the agent, broker, franchise, association, and MLSs is that marketing matters· and our challenge to you is to improve your property marketing to better serve the purchasers and sellers within the industry you operate. So BoxBrownie.com, as a company, and I, as a bullish, inquisitive, now non-practising listing agent (genuinely interested in the USA property industry and equally in love with the fabric and people who make the industry be who it is) are excited to offer this first research report to the American property industry. It is a way of saying thank-you for the way you have accepted this Australian start-up (now scale-up) and the love and support you have shown us over the past four years. Download the full BoxBrownie.com 2021 Listing Visual Marketing Analysis report here.
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7 Things You've Probably Gotten Wrong About Real Estate Leads
1. "Online Leads Are Low Quality" 2010 called and they want their complaint back! But really, online leads are a lucrative part of nearly every top producer's database. You just have to understand how to create a system to work them from the top of the funnel all the way down to when they're ready to convert. How do I build a system to convert my leads? Partner with a real estate CRM that can help you qualify, categorize, sort, and work your leads effectively! It's all about being in the right place at the right time. 2. Always Be Prospecting Okay, okay. It is important to always be prospecting. However, it's more important to always be nurturing. New leads are awesome, but what percentage of new leads that come through the door convert to a closed deal? Your business will grow tenfold if you invest as much effort as you normally do into prospecting into your lead follow-up and nurture as well. Because your database is a goldmine! Remember this: Yesterday's "maybe" is tomorrow's "yes"! 3. "It's Difficult to Find Seller Leads" It may be more difficult to find seller leads than buyer leads in a market with record buyer demand and low inventory, but it's certainly not impossible! It's all about getting creative in order to unlock standing inventory out there. Need some inspiration? Here are 34 creative seller lead generation strategies to get you started. 4. "The More Leads the Better" This one is half true, half false. When it comes to the individual agent, you don't want to have more leads than you can comfortably handle! If you're a team leader, consider leveraging a Lead Pond Account or a tool like SharkTank to dispense leads evenly and effectively to your agents. As a business, "the more leads the better" is pretty accurate. In fact, there is a direct correlation between database size and production volume! BUT! A growing database will only be fruitful if you know how to scale. Learn how to systemize your business so it becomes rinse-repeat. 5. "I Can Handle Lead Follow-up on My Own" Ninety percent of real estate agents will give up on a lead after the first four touches, despite the fact that 70% of the time that lead will go on to buy a home within the year, just with a different agent (NAR). That stat is pretty shocking, right? Make sure you're not giving up on leads when they don't convert on the first try. Leverage automated nurture plans to continue engaging with leads, including e-Alerts (fresh, personalized listings!) and helpful market data, so that you stay top-of-mind even without lifting a finger. Did you know that responding instantly to inquiries can increase lead conversion rates by up to 391% (Zillow and MIT)? Yep, speed-to-lead is critical in real estate! Even with an ISA, it's impossible to handle effective, speedy lead engagement that services leads around the clock. Consider partnering with a Lead Concierge Service that can handle it for you, so you can rest assured your leads are engaged while you focus on your top-dollar activities. 6. "It's Hard to Qualify Online Leads" This is where technology is your friend. With an effective IDX website, you can leverage built-in qualifying questions that capture information when new leads register on your site. Things like: "What's your timeline for purchase?" "Are you pre-approved for a loan?" Even, "Do you have a home to sell?" (to capture potential seller leads!) Along the same trope that "online leads are trash," comes the myth that it's impossible to verify or qualify online leads. This may be difficult to do on your own, but if you are partnered with real estate technology, you may have the ability to verify your leads before they enter your database. PRO TIP! Don't ignore seemingly fake or "trash" leads. As long as you have one piece of real information (phone number or email address), you should still work the lead. Maybe offer a special prize for agents who can convert leads with names like Seymour Butz or NOTHANKS. 7. "Cost-Per-Lead" is Everything Here's the thing. As the consumer evolves, so to must the marketing practices. Here's why you should focus more on ROI and cost-per-conversion versus just cost-per-lead. First, cost-per-lead isn't fixed! It shifts with seasonal trends, market forces (out of your control), location, competition, and demand. And second, getting a lead through the door means nothing if they don't actually decide to work with you! To view the original article, visit the BoomTown blog.
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The Importance of Long-term Engagement
Most homeowners would be glad to work with their real estate agent again -- but they never do. It's true. The average homeowner will own three or four properties in a lifetime, with most purchases spaced out between three and seven years. But even when they are thrilled with the service their real estate agent offered, they often end up using a different one for every transaction. How can this be? Some of the reasons are purely logistical. If someone is moving across the country, odds are they connect with a real estate agent in their desired area as one of their first steps. But there is a bigger reason: traditional real estate marketing is focused on customer acquisition, not retention. Customer acquisition can be an all-consuming part of any real estate agent's first year on the job. After that, it's important to start building referral business. This means you can spend less time going after that next client and more time building the long-term assets you need for the kind of firm you really want. In the long run, retention is easier than acquisition, which can cost 25x more. Long-term engagement is the key. And it can start with the clients you have right now. Long-Term Engagement Turns Customers into Allies for the Life of Your Business According to research from 2018, real estate agents are among the least trusted professions in America. In fact, only 11% of respondents consider real estate agents trustworthy, placing them above only politicians and car salespeople. Responses varied by region, with those out west feeling most suspicion of the profession. That's bad news, of course. But it means that when someone finds a real estate agent they trust, they don't really want to start over again from scratch. By recognizing and working with that reality, you can create lasting loyalty. That, in turn, has the potential to multiply the value of every customer relationship you hold. Getting more transactions from a single customer is an obvious example. You could double or triple lifetime value from your customers if they keep coming back to you every time they're ready to buy a new property. But that's not all: you can also get dozens of referrals from each customer over the lifetime of your practice. From that perspective, having even a handful of strong relationships could drive your revenue goals for years. After all, long before you have the opportunity to meet a client-in-waiting, that same person is expressing their desire to buy a home. . . to their family, their friends, and to just about everyone they know other than you. Referral business is a hot ticket, letting you be the very first real estate agent to talk to any buyer or seller. That positions you to build trust and continue the cycle, helping more people while growing your business. Set the Stage for Long-Term Engagement with Digital Marketing and Smart Follow-Up Real estate digital marketing becomes easier than ever when you adopt the right technology. Good technology doesn't get in the way of relationships; it makes them easier — allowing you to check in with people in helpful, meaningful ways without wasting lots of time on data entry. Here's how you can strengthen client relationships into real bonds of trust: Have a Consistent Plan for Following Up Everyone has their own schedule when it comes to following up with happy clients. It's not unusual to follow up with clients four times in the 12 months after their transaction, including on their closing day anniversary and New Year's. Some agents aim to follow up once a month. Whatever suits you best, have a plan and stick to it. Share Content Related to Home Ownership A blog is one of the most crucial features of your real estate website. To give you topics to talk about with your clients after move-in, consider creating content around homeownership topics. Maintenance, DIY, decorating, and more are all on the table and mean you can send useful content to the right clients. Use a CRM to Make Things Easier on You The DeltaNET™ 6 all-in-one solution for real estate centralizes everything you know about your clients. It gives you access to your whole history at a glance, no matter if someone is a new lead, in progress toward closing, or a satisfied customer. This saves time and keeps your contacts relevant. Treat Customers to Pleasant Surprises Relationships between people are built on sharing pleasant experiences and learning more about each other over time. You can put a little brightness into a customer's day with a handwritten note, a small gift, a coupon, or many other surprises. If they've opted in, real estate text messaging can be effective, too. RE Technology readers can try DeltaNET 6 FREE for 30 days. To view the original article, visit the Delta Media Group blog.
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How to Crush It on Pinterest for Real Estate
Kyle Hiscock, a top real estate agent in Pittsford New York, shares tips on how real estate agents can leverage Pinterest to grow their business. Here's Kyle: Here's How to Use Pinterest for Real Estate: A Realtor's Guide to Pinterest If you're in the real estate industry, you've probably heard the buzz surrounding social media. Real estate agents are killing it on many platforms. With the abundance of real estate marketing techniques to choose from, it's important that real estate professionals put their eggs in the right baskets. Here's how agents can use Pinterest to increase their online presence. Create Catchy Graphics In order to get your real estate brand recognized on Pinterest, you'll need catchy graphics. Pinterest is all visual. Graphics that are poorly designed or easily forgettable will result in poor results and a quick exit from Pinterest. It's vital to your real estate success on Pinterest that you create at least 2-3 memorable graphics relating to the topic you're writing about. There are several user friendly websites and programs that are available that make it easy to create great, eye-catching graphics. One website I use to create graphics for my content is Canva. Canva is a free website that allows users to create graphics of all sizes and also purchase photos for their graphics for as little as a $1. As a rule of thumb, the longer the graphic, the better it will perform on Pinterest. All of my articles are accompanied by at least three graphics that are 800px by 1200px. Here's an example of an article I wrote discussing why Realtors® ask for a pre-approval letter and matching graphics. These three graphics have been pinned almost 1,000 times, which is almost half of the 2,100+ shares. It's important to use only photos you have the rights too (either royalty free photos, or those you paid for). There are a handful of websites that allow you to get royalty free graphics and others that offer graphics as cheap as a couple dollars, such as Canva. Think Local Pinterest provides real estate agents the opportunity to showcase their local communities. Agents can easily gain a strong online reputation amongst community members by focusing on topics relevant to them. As one of the top real estate agents in Rochester NY, Pinterest has allowed me to show off not only the city of Rochester, but also the surrounding communities that I do business in. Pinning attractive photos of local establishments, landmarks, and other points of interest is social proof that you're in tune with your local community and further proves you're the local expert. Create Local Boards Your local boards shouldn't only be filled with your greatest and latest listing. These local boards should provide people who are interested in learning about your communities with some helpful information. On my Greater Rochester NY Pinterest board, I've pinned graphics regarding the local dog parks in Rochester, local real estate market reports, information for people who are moving to Rochester, Rochester landmarks, and other helpful Rochester related pins. In most cities, there are many surrounding towns, villages, and neighborhoods which you can also create seperate boards for. Join Group Boards One of the best ways to effectively use Pinterest in real estate is to join powerful group boards. There are dozens of excellent real estate group boards on Pinterest. Group boards are essential to Pinterest success, because the group boards expand the audience of pins. For example, if a group board has 10,000 followers, any pin you share with the group board will now have the ability to reach these 10,000 followers. Follow Other Agents Regardless of your reason for using Pinterest, all agents should follow other real estate professionals. This will not only help build your real estate brand, but also provide you with great ideas. There are several resources and articles that discuss who the best real estate professionals on Pinterest are. As you discover these real estate professionals on Pinterest, evaluate how they are using Pinterest. In most cases, these professionals are more than happy to answer questions you may have about Pinterest. "If you can't beat 'em, join 'em'" is a great saying to keep in mind as you're building your Pinterest presence. Don't Be a Super Sharer One of the most common reasons why real estate professionals don't succeed at Pinterest is because they are a super sharer. You're asking yourself, what is a super sharer? A super sharer is someone who pins content to one of their boards, shares it everywhere, then never shares it again. A super sharer on Pinterest will pin their graphics on their own boards and all of the group boards they belong to at once. This is a huge missed opportunity to reach the a large portion of the potential followers of these boards. Unless these group board followers happen to log in to their Pinterest account in the near future, your pin will likely go unseen by them in notifications. A great tip for Pinterest in real estate is to sprinkle your pins over a long period of time. For example, once I publish an article, I'll share one of my graphics on a couple group boards immediately. For the next several days, I'll share the same pin to a couple different group boards, keeping in mind to space the pins apart a few hours. This greatly improves the chances that more people will see my graphics, which will hopefully result in them pinning my graphics to their own boards. Some Final Advice Successfully leveraging Pinterest can be a game changer for your real estate brand. Building a strong Pinterest presence isn't exactly rocket science, but it does take time and effort. Good luck pinning! For the original post and more from Kyle, visit his blog at RochesterRealEstateBlog.com. To view the original article, visit the Zurple blog.
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I Wrote a Song and Won the Offer and More: Whissel Realty Rockstars Share their Deal-Closing Secrets
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Why Digital Marketing Isn't as Intimidating as You Think
In our digital age, there is so much to learn and keep up with as technology evolves. Between Facebook's regular modifications to its advertising capabilities, Apple's privacy policy updates, and Google's impending changes to cookies, you might long for the simpler days of phone book ads. We understand. But, we're also here to tell you that digital marketing isn't as intimidating as you think. In fact, it's how you think about it that will help you excel. To start, clear your mind of any preconceptions you have about digital marketing tactics, specifically social media ads and Google. They are, in fact, even better versions of the traditional marketing tactics you may be used to — here's why. Facebook as the neighborhood flyers Think of Facebook ads as the "everywhere ads." Sure, they only appear within Facebook, but users of the platform — including prospective buyers and sellers — scroll their feed more than a dozen times throughout the day, from the bus stop to Starbucks to work and back home (or, simply, while sitting on the couch). In some ways, Facebook ads are the modern-day equivalent of flyers — taped to poles, posted inside cafes, and slipped into mailboxes around the neighborhood, in hopes that prospects will see them while going about their day. People aren't paying much attention to flyers anymore, though. Instead, they're scrolling Facebook everywhere they go, and your ad could be shown to them every time they log in. Much like a flyer, that Facebook ad is a good prompt and reminder that you're a prominent real estate agent. Waze as a billboard Although billboards haven't gone the way of the dinosaur, they aren't very effective for promoting specific properties or signaling to drivers that there's an open house nearby. It's a missed opportunity to capture a prospect's attention while they are out and about, but there is a digital option: Waze, the wildly popular navigation app, is the perfect digital billboard. Think of Waze like a billboard — or better yet, a for-sale sign — that pops up on someone's phone when they are close to your listing or open house. Ads on Waze are shown to drivers in three formats: as a pin on the map, promoted at the top of search results, and as a digital billboard that appears in the app when drivers are at zero speed. Waze users don't just drive by your sign and forget about it. Your digital ads are displayed prominently in the app, and drivers need only be nearby the property to see an ad — not right in front of the house or even on the same street. Waze, therefore, is great for promoting open houses and alerting those who regularly drive through the neighborhood to new listings. Instagram as a TV commercial Similar to Facebook, Instagrammers are in the app a lot — 42% of daily users report logging in multiple times each day. The biggest difference between Facebook and Instagram, though, is that Instagram is a very visual platform. Native, user-generated content as well as digital ad units are formatted for photo and video sharing. This makes Instagram akin to TV commercials. People go on Instagram expecting an immersive and entertaining experience, not to read news or status updates. That's why it's the perfect advertising space for sharing your new, gorgeous listing photos and video walk-throughs. When users see them between posts or stories, it's like social media's version of a TV commercial. Google as the Yellow Pages Just as people used to use a phone book to find a plumber, real estate agent, or the phone number of the local car wash, they now turn to Google to search for the exact same things. Google has been adjusting its content over the years to give users a search experience that is more and more localized, just like the Yellow Pages used to do. The Google business profile is a perfect example of a localized search result. This is the profile box that appears in the top-right of the screen on Google Search, shows up to the side of Google Maps, and at the top in mobile after you search for a business. It's sort of like a digital business card or, better yet, an ad within the Yellow Pages. When you search for a steakhouse, dentist, or real estate agent, Google will serve a local Google business profile adjacent to the search results that it believes is most relevant to your search. It's a fantastic placement, especially considering that 80% of home buyers use Google during their real estate journey. Want to really stand out on Google? Opt for Google's Local Services Ads and its new Google Screened badge, the equivalent of that alphabetically-first spot in the phone book that gets more eyes and calls than anyone else. To view the original article, visit the Homesnap blog.
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Friday Freebie: Home Seller's Guide Template
Seller leads: they're a wonderful and profitable thing… if you can get them. But here's the thing we know about sellers: 77% contact only one agent before choosing a Realtor to sell their home (NAR). How can you be the first agent a homeowner thinks of when they're ready to list? That's where this week's Friday Freebie comes in. We're highlighting a brandable Home Seller's Guide that's full of the helpful information that homeowners are searching for before they decide to list their home. Use it to attract seller leads, educate seller clients—and ensure you're top of mind when a homeowner is ready to sell. Free download of the 2021 Home Seller's Guide template, courtesy of Zurple Selling a home is an involved and complicated process. When consumers are beginning to consider selling, they first research what they should know before diving in. Zurple's 2021 Home Seller's Guide template is a comprehensive resource of everything a potential home seller needs to know: Common real estate terms The timeline of selling a home How to hire an agent How to price a home How to prepare a home for sale How to evaluate an offer The ins and outs of closing a sale What to know about moving day And more! You can share this guide on social media, on your website, in person, via email, and more. Put it behind a lead capture form on your website to ensure you get the contact information of potential parties. The guide is brandable, with space not only for your contact information and logo, but it also concludes with a page featuring your bio and a call-to-action. You can link that page to your email or a CMA request landing page to acquire even more leads. Ready to get started finding more seller leads? Download the 2021 Seller's Guide template now!
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Real Estate Agents: Beware of Offer Letters as Emotional Bait
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Sharpen Up Your Real Estate Copy
As a real estate agent, odds are you didn't pick this career so you could write the next great American novel. But, just like marketing, writing is a skill that virtually all real estate professionals need to develop. In fact, you could find yourself writing several hundred words every month depending on your goals. Don't worry — that's nowhere near as much as a full-time writer, who may need to put out 50,000 words a week to meet deadlines. But it is substantial enough that sharpening your writing skills will make a difference. After all, your ability to craft your real estate listings with the right words is one of the things that makes them so appealing. You have the opportunity to dazzle your visitors, capture attention, and engage all of their senses. Often, this is the necessary first step before someone books a tour or registers with an open house. Whatever the case, you don't need to have straight As in high school English to be an effective real estate writer. Even if you snoozed through Rhetoric & Composition in college, you can still bring your skills up to snuff. After all, you won't be writing five-paragraph essays in real estate. Instead, you'll be conveying in words what you already understand about your ideal clients. If you know their interests, wants, and needs, you can reflect those in your word choices. The same is true of anything you write about your brand and virtually any other topic. The question is this: how can you accelerate that learning process if you've never written actively before? Getting Ready to Write: Tips to Put You in a Writing Mindset Write with Your Purpose in Mind Copy is writing with the purpose to persuade. When you create copy, you are trying to guide your leads from wherever they are now to the next step in buying or listing a home. With that in mind, the first thing to do is define your purpose. What do you need your reader to do next? Choose every word to further that goal. Tell a Story About Your Listings What makes a listing special? What details about its history, location, or features can you weave together to make someone say, "This is the one"? You might find yourself writing about what it's like to walk down the tree-lined street in the neighborhood or relax by the in-ground pool. All these details add panache to your story. Include Sensory Details Real estate is highly visual, thanks to all the wonderful photography. As a writer, you can also appeal to other senses. If a listing has a big yard, it might call to mind the crackling of meat on the grill, the smell of barbecue, or the sound of songbirds playing in the trees. This fires up leads' imaginations to make them think of home! Technology Tools for Real Estate Agents to Up Their Writing Game Spelling, grammar, and punctuation are not exactly the most interesting subjects. Even the vast majority of pro writers don't get energized thinking about them. They are simply a framework to help you communicate your ideas clearly. If any one of them is missing, it makes your copy harder to understand at a glance. Once you have an idea, you need to execute it. These tools can help: Grammarly is a writing coach that goes beyond the spelling and grammar check of a tool like Microsoft Word or Google Docs. It identifies many common issues, like wordiness and passive voice, that are easy to overlook. It also explains why something is incorrect, enabling you to learn as you go. GrammarLookup bills itself as a free alternative to Grammarly. In addition to its full-featured punctuation and grammar database, it uses AI to learn continuously. It can be used through your favorite browser and does not even require registration. All you have to do is copy and paste your text. ProWritingAid comes in the form of a free browser extension or a paid desktop version. In addition to grammar and spelling, it works as a style editor that helps you ensure your writing is right for your audience. Packed with 20 in-depth writing reports; its goal is to make you a better writer fast. Ginger is a popular spelling and grammar checker that can interface easily with your social media, email client, and many website editors, including WordPress. It even has fully featured mobile versions that will sync up between platforms. Terrific if you need to tap out social media posts or email replies on your phone! Writing can seem intimidating, but it doesn't have to be. Simply imagine that you're talking to a client face-to-face and you can go far. To learn more about using the latest digital marketing technology, contact us. RE Technology readers can try DeltaNET 6 (and its marketing technology) FREE for 30 days. To view the original article, visit the Delta Media Group blog.
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9 Automation Tricks that Will Rock Your Real Estate Business
Time is money, and the more time you can free up, the more money you can put in your pocket. Maximum efficiency is the name of the time-reclaiming game, and the first step toward that goal is to examine what's costing you valuable productivity. Where can your processes improve? Which redundant activities are holding you back? Surprisingly, the answer could lie in the very thing that's supposed to make you more efficient—the technology you use. The average brokerage provides its agents 12 different pieces of technology, according to consulting firm T3 Sixty. If those applications aren't talking to each other, you're looking at not only having to input the same client contact information into multiple systems, but you also risk leads falling through the cracks or missing out on automated post-transaction outreach that drives a customer-for-life strategy. Fortunately, many real estate platforms today can integrate with one another directly, or through third-party services like Zapier or API Nation. These integrations can help you automate tasks that you may be doing manually—or skipping altogether. To help you understand the many time-saving automations that can take your business to the next level, here we're highlighting nine handy examples of real estate integrations. Because the transaction is at the heart of any real estate business, the smartest move is to use your transaction management platform as the hub of your integration efforts. To help us illustrate this point, we're using transaction management platform dotloop in these examples. With over 75 integration partners, dotloop is one of the best-integrated technologies in the industry, and they offer two-way integrations, which means data can flow both in and out of their platform to your other applications. Learn more here. Ready to dive in? Here are nine automations that will rock your real estate business: 1. Start a new transaction right from your CRM or lead management tool. Did that lead you've been nurturing finally convert to a client? Save time by starting a new transaction right from your CRM. Dotloop integrates with both BoomTown and Zurple (and many more), enabling you to not only start a transaction from a contact's profile, but also view the status of a transaction and which tasks still need to be completed, all without leaving your CRM. 2. Streamline the earnest money process. Digital management of earnest money is one the best real estate innovations of recent times. Not only is it more secure, but it makes things far easier. The good news is, it can get easier still. Dotloop's integration with Earnnest lets you request earnest money right from the transaction platform itself. In turn, the customer can pay money directly to the escrow holder digitally via Earnnest, which processes the funds using a bank-level encrypted digital transfer. No more worrying about identity theft that could accompany mailing checks or wire-fraud. 3. Sync your email contacts with your transaction management platform. Transactions require a lot of back and forth between you and your client. Make sure you don't miss a step thanks to incorrect or hard-to-find contact information by syncing your email app with your transaction app. Dotloop integrates with both Outlook and Gmail. For a deeper Gmail integration that lets you start a transaction from your email, check out this Google Chrome plug-in. 4. Never miss a task or appointment with calendar integration. Speaking of Google, if you use Google Calendar to stay on top of your to-dos, integrating your transaction management solution with your calendar will automatically add important transaction dates to Google so you never miss a beat. 5. Digitally notarize documents with synced data. Skip the double data entry by syncing your transaction data to your digital notary platform. Notarize and dotloop work together so you can import transaction data from dotloop into Notarize for a streamlined process—and your clients can review, sign and notarize real estate documents faster. 6. Automatically send an anniversary message one year after a sale. The best way to keep a client for life is to stay in frequent contact. Celebrate your client's one-year home purchase anniversary by sending an automated message. BombBomb's integration with dotloop syncs close dates so that BombBomb automatically knows when to send the message. See what else this integration can do here. 7. Back up your transaction data to Google Drive or Dropbox. You know what never hurts? Backing up your data. Sync your transaction data to third-party services like Dropbox or Google Drive to give yourself a little peace of mind. 8. Keep your clients up-to-date on the transaction in Slack. Slack, a communications app, is all the rage in Silicon Valley. Many tech-forward Realtors have also taken to using it to keep internal communications about a transaction in one convenient place. If you're among them, connecting Slack to your transaction management platform means that you can automatically send or post Slack messages when, for example, a new document has been uploaded. See what the full integration with dotloop does here. 9. Stay in the loop on transactions from your franchise software platform. Last but not least, dotloop integrates with many of the major brokerage franchise's software platforms. That means you can start and access transactions right from your brokerage platform. Here's a list of franchises that integrate with dotloop. For more information or support, talk to your broker. EXIT Realty Realty Executives Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Century 21 Coldwell Banker ERA Real Estate Keller Williams To learn about more ways dotloop can streamline your business, visit dotloop.com.
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Bad Advice You Hear from Other Real Estate Agents Online
The internet is a great source for information. You can teach yourself new skills and uncover new knowledge for topics you care deeply about. The dark side of that, though, is you need to sift through a lot of misinformation. This misinformation then gets amplified in an echo chamber by people who are trying to validate their bias. This is how fake news spreads, but it is also how bad advice is accepted by a mass population of people. These are the pieces of advice you should avoid from other real estate agents online: 1. Make Your Own Website Anybody can make a website. The hypothetical "13 year old nephew that can do it better" illustrates the perception some agents have about how easy it really is. Creating a website, and creating a real estate website that generates results are two different things. Companies like Zurple exist to alleviate your stress and provide the website for you. There is no reason to take your attention away from your real estate business to learn how to code the IDX data from your MLS to appear on your site and communicate with your email campaigns. 2. You Should Never Pay for Leads Nothing is ever free. And while we agree you shouldn't pay for leads, that doesn't mean you shouldn't spend marketing dollars on Facebook or Google Ads. Or if you are not the most knowledgable in the subject of online ads, it would make sense to outsource that to a company that knows the ins and outs. In a similar bad piece of advice, they will tell you to do ads yourself. These are agents that took the time to learn how to monitor their own ads. Not every agent has that time, though. So in this case, it might be best to hire a professional. 3. ______ Doesn't Work There will always be another real estate agent that claims a certain product, technique, or company doesn't work. There will also be another agent that claims the exact opposite. Some agents will still fervently deny the viability of social media because getting face to face with their consumer is what they think is most effective. Then there are some agents that will say nobody wants to be bothered and will not pick up a phone or answer their door, so they get in front of them by being online. Agents will tell you it doesn't work, but what they really mean is that it doesn't work for them. 4. Internet Leads Stink Most agents will agree that you must be online to stay in front of home buyers and sellers. However many agents will also tell you that most of their online leads are bad leads. This is advice you should never listen to. In one of Zurple's recent webinars, many agents said they believe internet leads are only worth it if they transact within 28 days. However, with online leads just starting their home buying journey, you are capturing them at the top of the sales funnel. They have a few months of research left before they are ready to speak to an agent. To view the original article, visit the Zurple blog.
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Top Negotiation Tactics for Buyers in a Red-Hot Market
Even as so much changed in the last year, one thing stayed pretty consistent: high demand and low inventory in the residential real estate market. It's great news for the sellers who are ready to list (though on the flip side, many sellers are simultaneously looking to buy), but it's created a battle for buyers as prices soar amid record competition. Buyer's agents need to be at the top of their game to win for their clients. Now is the time to brush up on real estate negotiation tactics to ensure you can expertly make your buyers' offers stand out. Improve your negotiation skills with these four tips. 1. Include an escalation clause An escalation clause is an absolute necessity in this market, where more than a dozen buyers might be vying for the same property. If you're not familiar with it, it's a statement that tells the seller that your client is willing to raise their offer above the highest bidder by a specific amount. You can also add an upper limit in case the highest offer is well above what your buyers are willing to pay or can afford. In a bidding war situation, which is common in a hot real estate market, an escalation clause will give your clients the best chance of winning. Here is an example of what to write: [Name], referred to as The Buyer, offers to pay $[initial offer] for the property at [address]. Should the seller receive a bona fide offer exceeding $[initial offer], The Buyer will increase their offer by $[additional amount] above the highest bona fide offer, not to exceed $[upper limit offer]. 2. Take a win-win approach Although you may be inclined to take an aggressive, hardline approach to "go to battle" for your buyers, it's in your best interest to maintain a win-win perspective instead. Be the real estate agent who other agents want to work with, not the nightmare agent everyone dreads. When you focus on solutions and ask what the other party needs — such as seller terms, fast close, etc. — the deal will not only go more smoothly, but your positive attitude could actually be the deciding factor in the seller selecting your clients' offer over another. 3. Be flexible Similar to taking a win-win approach, flexibility is one of the real estate negotiation tactics that can prove to tip the scale in your clients' favor. Consider this: Most sellers will also become buyers if they aren't already searching for a new home. As they juggle buying and selling simultaneously, less-flexible offers or buyers who are more aggressive about needing the property ASAP may be easily dismissed. Find out what the sellers' ideal timeline is and what other needs they have, and then talk to your client to see if they'd be willing to accommodate to help their offer stand out. 4. Make it a point to meet the sellers in person With the current state of the pandemic in the US, people are increasingly comfortable meeting others face-to-face again. Encourage your buyers to join you at a meeting with the sellers and listing agent. Doing this provides an opportunity for your clients to create an emotional connection with the sellers and hopefully discover a few shared interests. In a bidding war situation where the sellers are comparing offers based solely on price, yours will be the one that has an additional reason to stand out. Final thoughts These aren't the only real estate negotiation tactics to consider, of course. But keeping them top of mind in a hot real estate market will help differentiate you and your clients from the competition. Ensure you're providing a good experience for the sellers — stay flexible, be solution-oriented, and meet their requests when possible — and take actions that will help elevate your buyers' offer. To view the original article, visit the Homesnap blog.
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How to Prepare Your Clients for a Natural Disaster
After selling a new home, you encourage your clients to care for their new investments. You might suggest that they buy security systems and ensure they have the right homeowners insurance. But what about preparing for natural disasters? This is a growing concern for homeowners, especially with coastal flood-prone properties. From floods and earthquakes to wildfires and hurricanes, natural disasters can do costly damage to homes and belongings. In fact, natural disasters rack up an annual average of over $162.5 billion in damages. And while home insurance helps, it may not cover everything. Before the next disaster hits, make sure your clients aren't left in the dark (literally and figuratively). Stay informed on what most people overlook when preparing for a natural disaster, and help your customers keep their belongings safe. Here's a list to get you started. 1. Have a Plan for Your Pets Most homeowners have a plan for how they'll move themselves and their families out of disaster zone, but not everyone plans ahead for their pets. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention says it's imperative that pet owners follow evacuation orders and bring their pets with them in a disaster situation. The best way to protect four-legged friends is to build an emergency pet plan. Your Local Security has a detailed pet emergency resource page full of sample pet-specific disaster preparedness plans, guidelines for caring for a pet throughout a disaster, and pet supply kit lists.  2. Backup Electronic Data From tablets to TVs to smartphones, Americans have dozens of electronic items that could be destroyed if exposed to the elements during a natural disaster. Though you can encourage your clients to store electronic items off the ground and plug them in to surge protectors, there's little guarantee that sensitive gadgets will be able to weather a storm securely. Fortunately, most electronics are replaceable. What can't be as easily replaced is the data they contain. The general rule is to make three copies of data, store it in at least two different formats, and make sure one copy is stored somewhere safe. How-To Geek has a handy guide for handling data in natural disasters, which you can pass on to any clients who work with a lot of digital information. 3. Take or Safely Store Irreplaceable Goods One-of-a-kind items valued for family significance will be impossible to replace if destroyed in a natural disaster, as will antique collectibles. Fortunately, experts at the Smithsonian have an entire Cultural Rescue Initiative, a global effort to protect and preserve cultural artifacts in disaster-ridden areas. The Smithsonian also shares tips on how to prepare these valuable heirlooms for an emergency. Make sure your clients are apprised of the resources available for heirloom care before and after a disaster. The National Heritage Responders are a team of conservators that offer 24/7 advice and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has various tip sheets for salvaging flood- and fire-damaged family keepsakes. 4. Take Inventory of Specialty Items and Valuables Custom woodworking tools, a studio stocked with photography equipment, or a library of antique books — these types of prized possessions are often incredibly valuable and expensive. They can also be the most difficult to secure in the event of a natural disaster. While your clients may not be able to guarantee the safety of their specialty goods during a severe weather event, they can take steps to ensure easier replacement after the event is over. Advise your buyers to take an excellent inventory of every item, including pictures and serial numbers. They should also talk to an insurance professional about the possibility of putting an additional rider on their home insurance policy to cover high-value items. 5. Important Documents In an emergency situation, few people remember to take care of important documents like birth certificates or property deeds. While some documents may seem inconsequential, the process of replacing official records and licenses can be taxing and time consuming. FEMA has a great resource detailing which documents should be protected. With the right organization and prep work, it's relatively easy to save paperwork from disaster. They just need to be electronically copied and then stored in a safe container—like a waterproof bag, fireproof safe, or a safe-deposit box. Passing Disaster-Preparedness Tips Along to Clients You sold your clients their homes—now help them protect their investments. You can be a valuable resource to your buyers by sharing emergency preparedness tips with them. Use this email template and checklist to encourage your clients to take disaster preparedness seriously: Dear [Client Name], You've invested a lot in making your house a home, and we want to help you keep that investment safe from natural disasters. Attached is a checklist of 15 things to consider as you prepare for a severe weather event. Best, [Your Name] With a real estate CRM, you can easily segment leads into lists (e.g., for those who will be/have been impacted by a storm) and email them with mass communication tools. For more details on how to do this, schedule a demo with us today. To view the original article, visit the BoomTown blog.
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3 Stand-out Video Hacks: Making Videos that Get Clicks!
You probably have heard that video is one of the most powerful and persuasive forms of communication. The statistics for the impact of YouTube alone are staggering: 2 billion monthly users, 74% of US adults use YouTube, and it's the world's second-most visited website, right after Google, which owns YouTube. On Facebook, the popularity of video is equally stunning. More than 4 billion views occur on Facebook daily, totaling 100 million hours of viewing. Facebook also wants your videos posted directly to Facebook, as they get 478% more shares on Facebook than videos linked from other sources, like YouTube. A Forrester Research analyst estimates that a minute of video is worth 1.8 million words, equal to more than 3,500 web pages. Most importantly, research by the National Association of Realtors found that 85 percent of all buyers prefer to work with an agent who uses video. However, NAR says fewer than half of all agents rarely or never use video. While many agents may use video in their marketing and promotional activities, even then, their efforts often fall short. Video tours have long been the primary type of video agents create. However, most video tours yield only a handful of views. While some video tours may generate hundreds and sometimes thousands of viewers, those are the exception, not the rule for video tours. How can you get more clicks when using videos? Here are three hacks to help you generate more viewers and engagement when you upload and promote your videos on both YouTube and Facebook: Create community tours: When someone buys a home, they are not just buying a property; they are buying into a community and the lifestyle their local area offers. What the internet often fails to do is visually showcase local communities with video tours. You can stand out from other agents by being the local expert and capturing tours of what people want to see: the local stores, parks, community centers, schools, restaurants, hiking, or biking trails – whatever makes your community unique and livable. Creating videos that showcase the area where they are buying will gain many viewers and perhaps more deals for you. Local Market Updates: Being the local expert also means you know what is happening in your marketplace. The internet is filled with big picture real estate statistics, but often misses the local picture. With video, you can share what's happening down to the local neighborhood level: how many homes sold, their first offer price and final sales price, how fast homes are selling, new developments planned, and more. Giving context to local trends – year-over-year and month-to-month changes – helps communicate your expertise and trustworthiness. Market update videos are great to share with both prospects and past clients as a way to stay both in touch and top of mind. Top 5 videos: One of the greatest challenges that agents face is figuring out what to share that people will be interested in reading or watching. Creating fresh and engaging content isn't easy. But there is a tried-and-true formula that has worked for many agents who create videos that grab a lot of eyeballs. The concept makes it easy to figure out video content you can create that others will be interested in watching. It's highlighting the "Top 5" in your community. Being a local expert, you know more about your community than just the real estate market. You know the best places to shop, dine, relax, and explore. You can capture and share that knowledge on video. Top 5 videos can include the Top 5 places to eat, Top 5 parks, Top 5 hiking trails, Top 5 places to shop, and you can even get more specific, such as the Top 5 pizzas. If you are in a market with seasons, you can create the Top 5 things to do in the winter/spring/summer/fall, or feature the Top 5 community events. There are many ways to create fresh and exciting videos around this theme. Most importantly, these types of videos can help solidify your position as the go-to local expert. As you can see, the one thing all these types of videos have in common is they have a local focus. Connecting your brand as the local expert by creating local videos helps you stand apart from other agents. By making video a key component of your marketing and promotional efforts, you can expand your reach significantly, reminding prospects and past clients about you and your real estate business. And remember, if you ever have general tech questions, a Tech Helpline expert is only a call or click away! To view the original article, visit the Tech Helpline blog.
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Clever Ways to Use Text Message Marketing for Real Estate
As a real estate professional, many things you do are time-sensitive. It's possible that you can lose out on a deal simply because you were waiting for a buyer to listen to the voicemail or check their email and they acted too slow. Text messaging allows agents to provide updates to buyers and sellers that are quicker and more immediate than email. Communication in real estate is critical. Text messaging or SMS (short message service) gives agents, Realtors, and brokers a valuable channel where prospective buyers can easily contact them, allowing them to increase sales. If you didn't already know, text message marketing in real estate is a powerful tool when used right. Let's consider the following statistics: 93% of real estate professionals prefer to communicate with their clients through text messages Text messaging as a whole has an open rate of 98% 90% of text messages are opened within three minutes compared with 20% of people who open an email Text messages have a response rate of 45% compared to email's 6% 68% of buyers would rather receive property info via text messages And even more telling, people respond to a text message within 90 seconds—by contrast, they respond to emails within 90 minutes. There are many benefits to leveraging text message marketing in real estate. Text messages can be a great way to send important reminders to your current clients. In Amarki, you can schedule and deploy automated text messages to remind clients of any important dates. One example is to set up an open house reminder text message that will send two days prior to the open house and then the morning of. It's cost-effective and generally less expensive than other forms of marketing, such as direct mail. Text messages create a far more personal touch to your marketing efforts. It's easy for clients to miss your emails in the sea of other messages they receive in their inbox. As people don't typically get as many text messages, they will at least see your SMS message. You can even launch mass text message marketing campaigns, but before you do this, you should ask your contacts how they would like to hear from you. While millennials may prefer texts, older generations might prefer email or even a phone call. Automated text messages can also be a great way to stay in touch after your clients have closed on their home. Here are just a few examples of text message templates you can consider setting up: Two weeks after close check-in: How is everything going? Are you getting settled? One year anniversary after close: Can you believe it's been a year since you bought your home? Congrats! On the client's birthday: Happy Birthday, [name]! You may not realize it, but sometimes even the smallest touch can have a big impact. Incorporate text messages as one more touch in your marketing strategy. Using the right tool or platform is a big investment in your bulk text message marketing strategy. It will empower you to reach potential buyers effortlessly and save you time and money. Here is how you can benefit from a perfectly chosen text message tool: Initiate a personalized, one-on-one text conversation with clients or prospects Increase attendance and engagement by scheduling important reminders Entice new clients with special keywords and calls-to-action So, do not limit your clients to just calling or emailing. Make your new home listings, price drop alerts, and links to real estate video tours available for them by choosing the right tool or platform, like Amarki. About Amarki: Amarki was built by real estate experts for Brokerages and Agents based on years of industry experience and firsthand feedback. We developed a marketing tool accessible to anyone, no matter the experience or marketing budget. By providing an intuitive tool that works "for" the agent, Amarki is able to remove the complexity of marketing tasks making agents more active. Check us out by clicking here.
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