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Friday Freebie: Finish 2021 with More Money in Your Pocket with this CRM and All-in-One Marketing Platform
We just hit the home stretch of 2021--the final quarter of the year. How many of your commission goals did you successfully achieve? If your targets are just out of reach, remember that a goal without a plan is just a wish. In order to meet your goals, it pays to have a detailed marketing plan that covers everything from your website, social media, email campaigns, market reports, and beyond. That may sound like a lot for a single agent to handle. That's why in this week's Friday Freebie, we're introducing you to a tool that can streamline your real estate marketing efforts and put you on track to meet your annual commission goals. Free 30-day trial of DeltaNET™ 6, no credit card required It's not too late to achieve everything you set out to do at the beginning of the year. Meet Q4 head-on with a powerful CRM that was previously only available to brokerages—but now is available to all real estate agents. We're talking about DeltaNET 6 from Delta Media Group. RE Technology readers can try this robust marketing and client management platform free for 30 days—no contract, no setup fees or credit card required. Here's what this "all-in-one" platform offers: Dozens of customizable, mobile-responsive website themes Email marketing campaigns and action plans are ready to send to your clients My Customer for Life e-newsletters Integrated blogging and testimonials Automated reporting tools like Market Watch, My Homefinder, and Seller Reports Customizable and automated ecards, print flyers, postcards, and brochures Social Connector for automated Facebook and LinkedIn posting AVM to capture more seller leads Ad Wizard Platform (Facebook and Instagram advertising) Finish 2021 with more money in your pocket and sign up for your free trial today!
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3 Powerful Technology Solutions You Already Have Access To (Or at Least Should)
I am going to describe a magical place where you can find very powerful technology solutions without having to spend another dollar. As with most products, there is the potential to buy upgrades if desired; but this place is meant to help you market your listings and find properties to buyers. You are probably wondering, "Where is this magical place that you speak of, Mr. Nash?" If you can keep it a secret, I will tell you. It is called—wait for it—the multiple listing service. Okay. I got that off my chest. Please keep it a secret; we don't want everyone to know. The multiple listing service, or MLS, SHOULD offer you MANY options of products besides the typical MLS system and showing service platform. If your MLS does not offer you more than just an MLS system and showing service platform, ask your MLS to provide more options—or just join another MLS. It is okay to join another MLS. It is widely believed that an agent can only use their local MLS—this is not true. You 100% have the ability to join another MLS. For any questions on this, either search (using your favorite search engine) "NAR MLS of Choice," or you can send me an email at [email protected] with any questions. Where to Find Products Offered by Your MLS As a user of RE Technology, you probably heard of Coffee Chats. These were daily webinars that RE Technology hosted during the beginning of COVID. Marilyn Wilson, President of RE Technology, interviewed a different company every day about ways to get through and handle this pandemic. One of her comments, nearly every day, was for agents to go to their dashboard and just click on ANY product they do not normally use. Below is an example of an MLS dashboard with many options for agents to choose from. There are three products on this dashboard that I am going to go more in-depth with to give you just a small taste of the powerful products available to you through the MLS, all without having to spend extra money. Most MLSs should provide the following options to their users: Homesnap, RPR, and ListTrac. Homesnap Homesnap is one of the most powerful mobile apps that an agent can use. First off, Homesnap is a search platform for consumers to explore homes and allows them to search for MLS real estate listings online or from their phone. But for the agent, it is so much more. The agent version of Homesnap is called Homesnap Pro. This allows you to have access to everything the consumer has access to and then some. You are basically armed with the power of the MLS listing from your phone. There are many features that the Homesnap Pro app empowers you, the agent, to do, including Rapid CMA generation, Safety Times during showings, the ability to create Facebook ads in-app, and a newer feature called Homesnap Showings, which gives you a showing appointment platform for no extra cost. RE Technology recently hosted a webinar with Homesnap to demonstrate the new feature to Homesnap Pro. You can watch the webinar below: If you are not sure that your MLS offers Homesnap, visit this link to search for your MLS. You can also call your MLS or visit your MLS dashboard and look for Homesnap. To download the mobile app, you can go to Google Play or the Apple Store. RPR REALTORS Property Resource® (RPR) is a nationwide property database and reporting software created by the National Association of Realtors that compiles hundreds of datasets on millions of properties. If your MLS offers RPR, you will be able to see nationwide property data. This will enable you to create dynamic analytical reports for your clients. For more on RPR, check out the video below: ListTrac ListTrac allows you, as the agent, to monitor your listing stats no matter where your listings appear online. You can sign up to receive a weekly summary of all of them called, "Activity @ a Glance," and also pull a "Seller's Report" that allows you to show your seller how much attention you were able to bring to their listing. Now It is Your Turn Go to your MLS dashboard (or link bed) and check out some of the products your MLS offers that you do not normally click on. Find out what these products do and determine how you can bring more value to your clients by using them. Come back next week to learn where to find training for your technology tools. You would be surprised by how much information is out there for you. If you have any questions about technology offered by MLSs or have suggestions for other articles, please feel free to reach out to me at [email protected] or on LinkedIn.
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RPR Works Everywhere, Just Like You
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YouTube Marketing: Fresh Ideas From Real Estate Influencers
Need fresh ideas to keep your YouTube channel relevant to consumers (and YouTube's algorithm)? Try these six real estate video ideas: Monthly Reports The pandemic showcased how fast and unpredictable market changes can be. This is something real estate clients are always interested in, now more than ever. Here are some subtopics you might want to consider: How prices on properties are changing in certain neighborhoods Mortgages are the evergreen topic real estate clients always want to know about. Take a look at Mattew Pfeifer's YouTube channel. Matthew focuses on the Canadian real estate market, providing valuable information about the real estate industry in Canada, market changes, as well as helpful tips for first-time real estate buyers and sellers. Neighborhood Evaluation With restrictions in place for everyone's safety, people are trying to stay at home. But property purchases are still happening. Therefore, clients, especially the ones that are moving states or neighborhoods, want to know everything about the place they're going to live. How much does living cost here? What businesses are prevalent here? Include information about schools, restaurants, hospitals, general accessibility, and transportation issues. What are some locations for leisure? Check out Homecity Real Estate's YouTube channel. They have a wide variety of neighborhood videos. How-to Videos How-to videos are the ones you can get super creative with. There are tons of topics you can cover. There are many concepts in the real estate industry that might be confusing for your clients. To get some ideas for how-to videos, remember all those questions your clients were asking you. This way, you might discover new potential clients along the way. For more how-to videos, check out Shaheedah Hill Real Estate. You will notice many how-to videos that address the questions that first-time homebuyers might have. "Just Sold" Showcasing your success is important. It not only celebrates your career as a real estate agent, but also ensures your clients know that you're capable of successfully selling a home. It can also be considered as a form of testimonial. Highlighting Local Businesses and Community Events Highlighting local businesses and community events not only showcases that you're a neighborhood expert, but it also indicates that you care about local businesses. Giving shout-outs to small businesses, especially right now when many of them are struggling, seems like a good tone. Behind-the-Scenes (BTS) Videos People are always interested in what is going on behind the scenes and what it means to be a real estate agent. That's why videos of "one day in life of a real estate agent" are so popular. Take a look at Loida Velasquez and Chastin J. Miles for two takes on the real estate BTS video. Still Not Sure? If you're still considering whether or not YouTube is worth it and whether you should commit to such a long-term strategy, don't worry. There are easy ways for you to start real estate video marketing. With the rise of TikTok and Instagram's newest feature Reels, real estate agents are able to create viral bite-sized content. You don't need a professional camera, or a crispy clear set up. Just your phone camera is enough. These two platforms can be your first step towards an extensive video marketing strategy. Check out Real Estate Marketing Dude to learn the top marketing strategies. To view the original article, visit the Realtyna blog.
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Latinx as the New and Emerging Market for Real Estate
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Turning Your Database into a DataBANK
Tuesday, November 9, 2021 at 11:00 AM PST Most agents are using their database as a glorified Rolodex. Greg Dallaire, Broker/Owner of Dallaire Realty, wants to flip that on its head and show you how to get more out of your technology. Learn how to squeeze every drop of ROI out of your CRM, optimize your systems to drive more business, and turn your database into a dataBANK. You'll learn: How to optimize your processes and systems How to make your CRM work for you How to maximize ROI How to stop missing opportunities within your existing database Register now!
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7 Ways to Waste Money in Real Estate
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1-Minute Lesson on How to Add Custom Pages to RPR Reports
RPR reports are packed with data and metrics your clients count on for making quick, well informed decisions. But do they include your personal and company marketing info? Your reports could include your bio, recent market production, your business philosophies, stats and awards, etc. Luckily, adding custom pages to your RPR Reports is no problem: Simply select "Manage custom pages" from the Report section A window appears that allows you to add up to five PDF pages Select the number of pages you want to add, and what order you want them to appear (beginning or end), and just like that you've got custom pages as part of your RPR Report Watch this just over one-minute video to see all of the above in action: To view the original article, visit the RPR blog.
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How Instagram Hashtags Can Make All the Difference
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Make Your Next Marketing Strategy Local
What does it mean to be a local real estate agent? By focusing on a targeted area, you become an expert in a specific geographic area. You regularly attend events and have your eyes and ears tuned into the pulse of the community. The relationship you have with a specific area is second nature and you know about all the new developments, where the best schools are located, the Walk Scores, and crime rates. To put it into perspective, you are the consumer's go-to when they need to find out who's who and the buzz in your area. When questions arise about planning, zoning, and environmental concerns or the selling price of the property down the street with a similar floor plan, you have the answers on the tip of your tongue. Honing in on a local area will make your brand stand out and get you recognized as the local expert. What are some secrets to becoming a local expert? Use virtual tours in your new real estate marketing plan It's no secret that consumers are using technology at a faster rate than ever before. Homebuyers are especially enamoured with searching online. According to NAR, 97% of them use the web in their quest for a new home. Sure, traditional and old-school marketing can add some nostalgia to your advertising, but it is time to embrace the digital age and focus on having an online presence. By incorporating real estate marketing tools like immersive 3D tours and interactive floor plans, you not only highlight the fit and flow of each property, but you highlight the fact that you are current with real estate technology. Be the agent the locals recognize as the tech-friendly marketing expert for all their real estate requirements. Following the leads and leading with followers You can lead by following. Follow the social channels of local businesses, including professional services, retail, recreational facilities, and builders and developers in the area. Take the lead by asking your followers questions on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook to initiate conversation. Listen to the voices of the residents and use your time to engage with the community by sharing stories on your social channels, including virtual open houses, 3D tours, and market updates. Did you know you can guide a buyer through a property by sharing a link during a virtual showing? Social connections can drive leads from your apps directly to a potential sale. The importance of standing out in a highly competitive field There are plenty of intelligent real estate agents who know the rules and abide by the fundamentals of the industry standards. But you need to be more than the "standard" Realtor. Marketing tools from companies like iGUIDE® can make you stand out. How you present a property listing should inspire, entice, and engage the consumer. How can you accomplish this? Use real estate marketing tools to reel in the consumer and make a connection. Buyers and sellers want information including accurate measurements, property-specific details, and community amenities. By offering floor plans and easily navigated virtual tours in your digital marketing, you can tie it all together with your expert knowledge of the geographic region. Create your brand identity with niche marketing One of the best marketing tools for real estate agents is building your brand through consistent messaging. Leading real estate coach Tom Ferry suggests you master a specific niche as one of the marketing ideas to elevate your brand. Every listing is an opportunity for you to reach out to the public and show them the value of choosing an agent who can offer good advice, accurate information and present it all in a timely manner. Doing this builds trust and recognition in your brand. When focusing in a specific neighborhood, it is imperative to help the community identify you as the "expert" in the area. You will get recognized as an agent specializing in a specific geographic area when offering things like virtual tours and precise floor plans in your listings. With the proper branding and dedication to your targeted area, your name becomes synonymous with the "go-to" agent for both buyers and sellers in your niche market. Details matter Focus on a single demographic region to uncover and learn the intimate details about schools, parks, Walk Scores, and community happenings. Little details about a neighborhood matter to buyers, as much as the fit and flow of a property. When you guide a potential buyer through a virtual showing, you can have a conversation with them about what it would be like to live in the home. Highlighting property details makes it easier for a consumer to imagine how they will fit into their new home. Working in a niche market doesn't mean you can stray away from the environs periodically. After all, plenty of opportunities will arise while networking within your chosen locale. The key to your success is to use the best marketing tools for real estate agents to distinguish yourself from everyone else out there.
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Dotloop Basic Training for Agents
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New Update to Google Ads: What Agents Need to Know
It's the biggest news you probably haven't heard: last-click attribution has been replaced by data-driven attribution as the default conversion model in Google Ads. You may not be familiar with the terms "last-click attribution" or "conversion model," and it's possible that you're wondering why (or if) any of this should matter to you. Trust us, this is important news. Generating leads is essential for real estate agents, and changes in conversion models could result in more and better leads for some agents and fewer leads for others. In this article, we'll define attribution models and learn how they help agents, and establish the difference between last-click and data-driven attribution. What is an Attribution Model? "Attribution model" is a technical term that explains a simple sentiment: determining which marketing campaigns are responsible for individual digital marketing conversions. Marketing conversions are when people engaging with marketing materials take the desired action, such as clicking a link or filling out a form. Attribution models, then, exist to give credit to the marketing materials that are actually delivering new leads. Without attribution models, marketers have to guess which marketing materials and campaigns are responsible for new leads and actions. For example, some agents run ads on Facebook, Google, and Instagram. Without an attribution model, you won't be able to identify the ads, platforms, and actions that are delivering you leads. But with an attribution model, you have a way of discovering which specific ads and platforms caused your leads to engage, so you can adjust your budget and strategy accordingly. Marketing is most useful when it can be measured, so a functional attribution model is a major boon to any marketing campaign. Last-Click Attribution vs. Data-Driven Attribution Attribution models may be important, but they are not standardized. Last-click attribution gives the full share of conversion credit to the most recent marketing interaction, while data-driven attribution weights multiple stages and touchpoints that leads engage with throughout their buying journey. Consider a hypothetical buyer or seller's online journey: First, they search "real estate agents near me" on Google. They glance at the list of local real estate agents' Google business profiles, see your name toward the top, click on your profile, and briefly read your information. A few hours later, they log into Facebook and see one of your ads. They remember you from their Google search, click on the ad, submit their information, and become a hot lead. Which marketing platform deserves credit? Is it the Google search result? After all, that's where the buyer or seller first saw your name. That said, wasn't Facebook where the person actually took the action required to become a lead? Last-click and data-driven attribution models take different approaches to this quandary. In a last-click attribution model, your Facebook ad receives all the credit for the marketing conversion, since that was the last marketing touchpoint before the user took action to become a lead. Data-driven attribution is savvier and more holistic. Instead of only giving credit to the last marketing touch point, data-driven attribution would give credit to both your Google and Facebook ads, using a technical weighting system to attribute shared credit. Source The shift to data-driven attribution is an indication that Google recognizes just how complicated digital marketing is, and wants to help advertisers understand where their leads are coming from. Learn how Homesnape Concierge can help you navigate data-driven attribution. To view the original article, visit the Homesnap blog.
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4 Companies Compete in Matterport's Space Jam
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Friday Freebie: 2022 Real Estate Business Plan and Strategy Guide
Here we are in the fourth quarter of 2021 with 2022 looming on the horizon. Is it too early to plan ahead? Not in today's market! With ever-tightening inventory, now's the perfect time to create--and budget for--strategies that will elevate your business in 2022. To help you out, we're highlighting a business planning guide in this week's Friday Freebie that comes complete with worksheets and performance calculators that will help you prepare for a profitable 2022. Free download of 2022 Real Estate Business Plan and Strategy Guide, courtesy of Zurple "If you don't know where you've come from, you don't know where you're going." That's a Maya Angelou quote, but it's applicable to planning for your business' future. The 2022 Real Estate Business Plan and Strategy Guide offers worksheets to help you understand your performance in 2021 so that you can better plan for 2022. In addition, this free guide offers: Real estate news stories to help your clients understand the current market Tips for success in 2022 Lead generation strategies Worksheets for calculating your performance in 2021 Worksheets for helping you set goals and strategize for 2022 Tools, including lead generation and performance calculators Get ready to tackle 2022 and download your FREE copy of Zurple's 2022 Real Estate Business Plan and Strategy Guide now!
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4 Steps to Find a Technology Solution that Works for You
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How to Inject Creative Life Into Your Emails
We all need fresh inspiration from time to time in our lives. Whether it's in our personal lives or our professional responsibilities, sometimes the monotony of routine can start to wear on you. The same goes for a marketing strategy, with email being the one marketing channel that can sometimes feel like a complete hit or miss. Far too often, marketing plans get stuck in a set-it-and-forget-it template and start to grow stagnant – and your ROI starts to suffer. Here are three areas in your email marketing where you can get creative as a real estate agent and inject your personality into how you communicate. 1. Throw a party Let's face it – everyone loves a party, even more so when they aren't the ones hosting it. Client appreciation events do exactly what their name entails; they are for you to appreciate your clientele – while also looking to deepen your existing relationships. Hosting a party has all the makings of a creative angle for promoting it. Make sure you give yourself enough lead up time to let people know about your event, planning it and building your guest list. This allows for a series of emails to go out in a drip campaign hyping it up, and reminder emails as well. Hint: Suggest that they "bring a friend," which will then allow you to add them to your database and expand your referral numbers for future follow-up. Hey – the more the merrier! 2. Celebrate an Anniversary Personalized email marketing is the trick to cutting through an overloaded inbox. Whether it was a prospect you met two years ago, or a lifelong friend, people LOVE when they are remembered. The trick to doing this is to jot down any and every key point you had from their last conversation. Pick up on birthdays, wedding anniversaries, graduations and move-in anniversaries to log them into your CRM. It is truly unbelievable how far follow-up on key dates like this can go, because it shows that you care and that you pay attention to the smaller details in their life. It's also an easy and mighty way to stay top of mind when they're in the market for a real estate professional. 3. Host a Fundraiser This pairs well with the party aspect, because people like to rally behind a fundraiser in their community that supports a great local cause. You could: Host a BBQ as a fundraiser and request attendees to donate old clothes. Design a road hockey tournament with proceeds going towards sponsoring a youth sports team or club. Volunteer you time serving at a local restaurant, with proceeds going to your preferred local charity. Host a food truck event to raise money. Plan a community bake sale to bring together the neighborhood. All proceeds from the baked goods going to charity. How to make your emails stand out Now that we've outlined three ideas on what to base your email campaigns around, it's time to breathe life into these emails. When looking to inject personality into your email marketing strategy, remember that it's important to know your audience and tailor your content and messaging towards their proper segment. For instance, the email copy for a 25-year-old prospect won't be the same as a 60-year-old newly retired couple – the message has to meet the demographic. This is why having a real estate CRM is crucial because it allows you to segment these different personas and design drip campaigns to cater to the respective siloes. Here are some tips to help make your message pierce through the screen: Use GIFs GIFs, or Graphics Interchange Format, are image files that support both animated and static images. GIFs are easy to consume, they catch your eye, and they have an emotional impact. Everyone has seen enough cat GIFs flooding their social media—but, remember, this type of media really resonates with the Millennial generation and could be hit or miss with an older demographic. It's good to try new things – but make sure you know your audience will actually consume it. More Visuals, Less Text Let your visuals tell the story and feed all of the information through them. Remember, visual content generates up to 94% more views on your posts – take advantage of what that statistic is telling you. Film it While video has long been seen as an expensive and time-consuming marketing practice, the truth is that is doesn't have to be. With BombBomb, you can easily record videos and insert them into your emails by filming with the video recorder. Try this: instead of typing everything you want to convey into an email, write it out as a script for yourself and film yourself on your computer! It's a much more intimate and compelling way to personalize your message, and helps put a face behind your message. No matter how creative you choose to get with your emails, all roads lead back to having a high-powered CRM to help you launch the campaign and measure its effectiveness. To view the original article, visit the IXACT Contact blog.
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Your Guide to Professional Real Estate Virtual Assistants
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3 Tips to Find Listings in the Current Market
Well, that was quite a summer real estate market! Huge year-over-year valuation gains, bidding wars and lower than low levels of inventory. At one point, there were even more NAR members than listings! However, things do appear to be cooling off a bit and leveling out in many areas. But that doesn't mean that the inventory shortage (and increased competition) is going to just disappear. It will mostly likely be more of a slow fade. Then again, maybe not. Predicting and timing markets is a tricky business, and hardly an exact science. The point is, finding listings and sellers isn't going to get easier overnight. You need motivation, a plan, data, and market insight. You need to get in front of would-be sellers to earn their trust and pique their interest. Here are three ways to do it with help from RPR. 1. Put RPR data to work for you One of the most important things you can do with potential clients and prospects is build trust and confidence. If someone is apprehensive about selling, the housing market or even the economy as a whole, they need reassurance that they're making the right moves. They want to hear more than opinions; they want charts, graphs, stats and info from expert sources. You can deliver that and much more! With RPR, every REALTOR® is a click or fingertip away from accurate, up-to-date property and market data. The trick is figuring out how to convey this hard data to customers in an easy to digest manner. Here's a couple of examples of how to put RPR data to work for you: Run an RPR Market Activity Report and use those facts and figures to create a social media post (or flyer) to give an update on the area. It could be one street, one neighborhood or one ZIP code. You can even draw the area by hand on a map! Include active, pending and sold information for the last 3-6 months. Or include how much home values have increased in the last calendar year. While many homeowners are aware that their homes have risen in value, not all of them know the exact figure. Providing this type of information can really open their eyes, get them thinking, and position you as the go-to source for local market knowledge. Create an RPR Neighborhood Report and use that data to make a quick video that will create buzz about a particular neighborhood. Just record footage of the neighborhood and use a quick video editor app such as Ripl, then record your voiceover. In 30-60 seconds, you can give important stats on the area's home values and sales activity, the demographics of the population, economical statistics, and quality of life tidbits including parks, commute times and public transportation. And of course, amenities such as restaurants, retail shops, walkability scores and more. Post the video to Instagram or Facebook and alert your sphere that this neighborhood is perfect for their lifestyle. This is a great "soft sell" approach, where you're giving a neighborhood update that isn't 100% about home prices, and can go a long way in connecting you to a community and its residents. Be sure to include a call-to-action line at the end, such as, "I've done a ton more research on (NEIGHBORHOOD NAME) and if you're interested, I can create a report and share it directly with you." Hint: the reports you follow up with can easily be made in RPR! 2. Fine-tune your prospecting Prospecting is the ultimate proactive approach to new business. While some top producers acquire listings strictly through referrals and repeats, most agents need to put in some hustle to find new prospects and leads. And RPR is built to help you succeed at it! Tapping into RPR as a resource in these efforts is a smart approach, as there are many ways to apply its data, reports and maps to a prospecting plan. You can go in-depth with geographical prospecting to find every homeowner in a specific area who's owned their home more than 15 years, then make a mailing labels list (up to 2,000, for free, every month), and send each one a report on their home. Or you can keep it as simple as creating a one-page flyer about their home and drop them off in person or send out a handful of mailers. With RPR as a prospecting tool, you have options. For an in-depth look at everything RPR offers, we encourage you to download our exclusive eBook on prospecting for new clients and leads. Get How to Farm and Prospect for new Clients: an Exclusive RPR eBook and you'll have one of the industry's go-to sources for prospecting. It's filled with tips, step-by-step how-to's, quick video lessons, success stories and more. Keep it on your desktop and add it to your digital library to learn: Prospecting/Farming basics: the who, what and why's of geographic farming Formulas for Turnover and Absorption rates A step-by-step guide on how to set up geo farming areas in RPR How to generate a mailing labels list/CSV file Which RPR reports are best suited for prospecting Agent success stories that you can emulate This guide is the north star when it comes to real estate prospecting. It's a map to success and all you need to do is read it, follow it and put it into action to gain warm leads and new clients. Click the link and download your exclusive copy today. 3. Make a lasting impression with your listing presentation Congrats! If you've made it to the presentation phase, you're now just minutes away from nailing down a new listing and hitting paydirt. This is your time to shine, put your best foot forward, knock their socks off and every other cliche in the book. Your listing presentation is a resume, a capabilities brochure and a first impression all rolled into one. Using the tools and reports within RPR to create your listing presentation is a smart and savvy way to impress your clients and give you a sharp, competitive edge. The first thing you'll want to do is have a pre-discussion with your potential client. During this first step, make sure you do plenty of listening. Ask leading questions that get them talking about why they are selling. Find out all you can about their priorities and goals. Doing this type of homework will help you tailor the presentation around their needs. For sellers, the most important part of working with a REALTOR® is the agent's ability and experience in pricing the home. This is where you and RPR come together to form an unstoppable team. Here are some boiled-down highlights you'll want to consider using: RPR's Realtor Valuation Model® (RVM®): This pricing tool sets the standard for automated real estate valuation models. It goes beyond the traditional AVM by incorporating listing and sales data from the MLS into the equation. The RVM® is also accompanied by a Confidence Score—a value between zero and five stars that indicates the level to which each of the multiple models agrees with other estimated values for a given property. High confidence scores indicate that other models yield similar estimates for the property. Watch this short video for details. RPR's CMA is used to determine a price or price range for a property that is both quantitative—based on comps and market information, as well as qualitative—reflecting your knowledge of the property, neighborhood and market. RPR's wizard walks you through five simple steps to generate a comparative analysis. You'll confirm the home's facts, search for and adjust comps, and land on your own list price by reviewing the analysis. RPR's Refine Value tool: If your seller has home upgrades, consider RPR's Refine Value tool to determine the value of a home based on property characteristics, improvements made and market conditions. Use the simple sliding scales to refine the home's value based on your assessment of local market conditions, the interior and exterior of the home's condition, lot size, view and privacy. Seller's Report: Now bring it all together with the RPR Seller's Report. This custom report can be created quickly, and includes a photo of the property, plus your photo and contact information. Plus, you can add customized pages. Inside, you'll find details on the subject property, local market conditions, side-by-side property comparisons, mortgage and distressed information, tax assessment history, and more. Here's a guide to learning all the details about a RPR Seller's Report. To create a truly compelling listing presentation, you must stand out from all the other agents, provide relevant data and prove your value. You must convince the owners that you're the best REALTOR® to help them realize their home selling goals. Check out this article, "21 Steps to a Stellar Listing Presentation," for a step-by-step plan to winning that listing. Find sellers with RPR As you can see, if you have the will, RPR has the tools to help you gain listings. Use these assets and resources to identify, market yourself and pitch your services. Sellers are out there, and RPR can help you find them! To view the original article, visit the RPR blog.
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How to Improve Google Positioning by Promoting Yourself Locally with Virtual Tours
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3 Open House Themes to Sell Your Listing This Halloween
Decorating your listings for Halloween can be fun and help generate extra interest in your listing, especially if you're planning to host a "haunted" open house. Here are three themes that can add some spooky or classy Halloween flair to your listings. Pick one to use at your next open house or use them as a launching off point to get your creative juices flowing and come up with your own open house theme. Pumpkins and Gourds If you want to acknowledge Halloween without fully committing to the holiday, working some pumpkins and gourds into the home's decorations can help. These seasonal items will give your listing a festive feel while giving you the flexibility to keep your other decorations classy or more subdued. For a twist on this classic decorative item, consider painting your pumpkins or gourds. Gold, silver, or brass pumpkins can bring draw attention to the home's fixtures of the same color. Witches and Magic A new home can feel like a magical place, so magic (and those who use it) can be a popular theme for an open house or fun, quirky listing photos. A cauldron full of candy, broom stick parking, pointy hats, robes, wands, and books are all fair game in a witches and magic themed home. You can also consider inviting visitors to come see the home in costume or provide a few festive games they can play to make their visit more memorable. Just remember not to go overboard with the decorations—too many and you may distract from the listing's best features. Orange and Black Orange and black have been the traditional colors of Halloween for centuries. As such, this theme is a natural option for your Halloween staging and open house theme. Set the table with black and orange place settings. Get some orange and black throw pillows for the beds and couches. Fill some vases (especially if they're made of pumpkins or gourds) full of orange and black themed bouquets. For more ideas on how to make your listings look great throughout the year, download a free copy of The Homeowner's Guide to Staging. This free ebook has great tips you and your clients can use to decorate your listings in any season. For even more ways to indulge in a bit of Halloween fun, plug your listings (or your office address) into www.Haunted.Homes to find out if your properties are haunted! To view the original article, visit the Homes.com blog.
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How to Generate Free Real Estate Business from Google
Google is a powerful search engine tool that helps users locate information online based on keywords. In short, Google uses these keywords to locate sources online and display them for you according to their relevance and popularity to your keywords. With 90.46% of the search engine market share, Google is by far the most popular, and it's no surprise it has claimed the generic term for looking up information online. Instead of saying, "Look it up online," you say, "Google it." There's plenty of opportunity on Google and real estate professionals must take advantage of its influential tools in order to grow their business and gain market share. If you want to find home buyers, you need to go where they are -- online. There's a trade-off between spending time vs. money when deciding between options for solutions. You can either spend more time solving a problem and less money, or you can spend more money and less time. When it comes to generation leads to grow your real estate business, Google also entails this trade-off. Google has two tools to help you reach and engage consumers: Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Search Engine Marketing (SEM). Since SEM entails financing, I will share SEO strategies that generate free real estate business from Google. 1. Generating Real Estate Business with Search Engine Optimization for Google SEO is the "spend more time, save money" strategy and attracts consumers to your website, also known as organic traffic. You can increase the amount of organic to your website by tailoring its content to Google's algorithm. Your traffic will experience a snowball effect when implemented correctly – the more quality traffic you receive, the higher you'll rank on a relevant Search Engine Results List (SERL), and that means even more traffic. In a nutshell, that means including relevant keywords throughout content, consistently updating content, and keeping visitors on your website with valuable information. Below are tactics to enhance your website's SEO and increase organic website traffic: Real Estate Blogging – Each week, do some research and write a 500-word article about the real estate industry, your city, or helpful tips for buyers and sellers. Automated SEO City Reports – These are like real estate blogs but with specific information such as snapshots of homes for sale, featured properties, market data, school reports, cities, counties, and neighborhoods. Since this type of information is highly sought after by prospects, it will attract relevant traffic to your website. Update Pages with Keywords – Review each page and blog article on your website and see if its keyword is included in the title, each header, description, link, paragraph, and image file. Examine this article—can you figure out the keyword? It's important to note, keywords or keyword phrases do not have to match a search exactly. So a keyword phrase like "California Home Sales" would still be included in a search for "Homes for Sale in California." Include Outbound Links – Include a source to support the claim for each fact that you share to increase the credibility of your content. You can also use them to provide third-party tools that a buyer or seller might find useful. Examine this article, how are outbound links incorporated? Remove Broken Links – Broken links cause a poor user experience, hurts your SEO, and lowers your SERL ranking. After you've located broken links, go to your website and either update, remove, or set up a redirect for the link. Increase Backlinks – Backlinks are links on other websites that drive traffic to your website. For example, let's say you have a broker branded website and your own. If you include a link on your broker branded website that directs traffic to your website, that's a backlink. You can increase backlinks to your website by partnering with local community members, bloggers, newspapers, philanthropies, etc. Increase Web Page Load Speed – Your website's speed affects its bounce rate – the rate at which visitors exit your website without any interactions within 30 seconds. A high bounce rate will lower your SERL ranking. To decrease your website's load speed, you can compress images, remove unnecessary HTML/CSS code, unused page elements, etc. The HubSpot Website Grader tool is extremely useful in identify speed detractors in addition to performance, mobile adaptability, and security. Use Formatting with Headers and Bullet Points – Your writing should follow a basic structure that's scannable and easy to digest. Using headers at the beginning of sections, bullet points to separate ideas, and bold to emphasize words are just a few ways you can use formatting to make your writing scannable and reader friendly. Spelling and Grammar – Poor spelling and grammar will hurt your credibility, so double check your work. Grammarly is a free and useful spelling and grammar tool that checks for errors and recommends corrections as you type. You can install into Google Chrome as an extension. Pick a Catchy Title – Catchy titles include buzzwords like "The Top 5…" or "…in 2021" and get people to click on your article. Set Up Google Business – When a consumer begins their search online for an agent or brokerage to work with, their Google search might say, "Real estate agents in San Diego." A map with brokerages will appear that makes it easier to find local business. Setting up your business with Google will add your business to this map – which displays at the top of a local search. Mobile Adaptability – According to a Hitwise's Mobile Search Topics & Themes [US] Report, 60% of all online searches and 48% of real estate/properties industry searches were via mobile device. If your website isn't mobile compatible, Google will penalize your website and rank it lower on its SERL. If your website is mobile adaptive, you will rank higher and provide a good user experience for your website visitors. Now that we've gone over several ways to drive organic traffic to your website to generate free business from Google, let's go over how to convert that traffic. In order to convert organic traffic into leads, you must include lead capture forms and contact forms through out your website. 2. Converting Organic Traffic into Leads A home buyer looking for valuable, relevant content will find a buyer's resource page helpful. By setting up a lead capture form on valuable information like this, you can entice a website visitor to exchange their contact information for your buyer information – converting them into a lead. Additionally, a blog article, city reports, seller's resource page, listings page, and other tools like a home or comparative market analysis should be leveraged to capture and convert website traffic into a lead. In order to increase traffic and conversion rates, you must learn how to analyze data and make decisions based on your understanding of the data. Optimization is usually implemented through A/B testing. To learn more about analyzing website traffic to optimize your website's SEO, check out Google Analytics. When it comes to making important business decisions, you can either spend more time and less money or spend more money and less time. Attracting organic leads to generate free real estate business from Google is considered the former. Although SEO strategies take time to mature, they will generate passive leads that will consistently fill your funnel. To view the original article, visit the TorchX blog.
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5 Reasons Leads Are Choosing a Different Agent
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Real Estate Cybersecurity Practices That Should Become Your Second Nature
The real estate industry can't function without sensitive information. The amount of personally identifiable information floating through real estate networks makes it a primary target for cybercriminals. Cyberattacks can result in disruption of business, financial loss and damage to reputation. Today, we are going to speak about the real estate cybersecurity practices that should become your second nature. Real estate agents are responsible for keeping their clients' information safe. Unfortunately, the real estate industry doesn't have regulations in place for real estate professionals and companies to adopt cybersecurity practices. So, the responsibility falls to individual agents. Remember, cyberattacks often are human behavior oriented. And by being aware and proactively monitoring our daily habits, we can significantly reduce the risk of the cybersecurity breach. So, what daily practices should real estate agents be aware of? Passwords This seems like an obvious answer, but you would be surprised how many people forget to update passwords or fail to use strong passwords. Weak or obvious passwords make the job of a cybercriminal easier. The best practice for keeping your clients' information safe is to keep your passwords completely random. No identifiable pattern means a whole lot of work for cybercriminals. If you want to have a secure password but also remember it, use a passphrase that is familiar to you only. Do not share your passwords with anyone. And always activate two-factor authentication for every account possible personal or business. USB Devices According to the Cyber Readiness Institute (CRI) USB devices are one of the major problems when it comes to cybersecurity breaches. It's easy to bring malware into your computer with a USB drive. That can significantly endanger your clients' personally identifiable information. USB devices present a classic situation known as the Good, the Bad and the Ugly. The good is that USB is an extremely popular, easy to use and inexpensive method to store and transfer files. Unfortunately, USB drives are often lost, or they simply stop working. This is the bad. And the ugly side of USB is definitely the ease of it getting infected and infecting your computer with malware. Instead of using USBs, we urge you to explore safer alternatives. Phishing Phishing emails are a very widespread phenomenon lately. They look like an official email, but that's just a disguise to scam you. The totally legit appearance doesn't make you question the validity of it, and you might enter your personally identifiable information or click on malicious links. That's why it's so important to be aware of phishing. So, what should you pay attention to? First of all, read your email carefully, and watch out if: The email is urging you to take action The email is inconsistent The email contains grammatical errors The email contains attachments and hyperlinks Software Updates Software updates is one the core four issues that make cybersecurity a liability. Software updates contain important security patches that keep your devices safe. Not updating your softwares might endanger your and your clients' personal information. Little Tips and Tricks You Shouldn't Forget About Don't forget to lock up your computer screen. If you're an agent on the run and you're constantly moving, there is a chance you might lose your laptop. Locking your screen will at least prevent cybercriminals from accessing your personal data. If you're still using USBs, use encrypted and high quality USBs, and don't plug it in untrusted devices. P.S. Want to know more about cybersecurity in the real estate industry? Check out our blog, Cybersecurity Guidelines for Real Estate Agents. To view the original article, visit the Realtyna blog.
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Is October the Best Time to Buy a Home?
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5 Places to Find Tech Support
It's late in the evening and you have come across a problem with your software. Who do you call? Normally the answer would be the Ghostbusters, but I don't think they can help you with software problems. If you are like me, I always seem to have issues at the oddest moments and can never find tech support when I need it. Look no further! Below is a list of five places that you can look to when you need technical help. The Tech Company's Website Check the company's website for a phone number, email, or chat. This is the most simple solution, but it is not always available. This might seem a bit crazy in 2021, but not all companies make support easily accessible. When looking at a company's website, there are a few things to look for. First, a phone number should always be on their website. They should also have a link called support or a chat bubble for you to click on. As an example, check out Delta Media Group's website below. Your MLS's Tech Support The second place you should always look for tech support is your MLS. You should note that any MLS that you are a part of should provide you with access to help with tech support. If not, then you should begin shopping MLSs. MLSs are similar to technology companies; it being 2021, they are supposed to provide you with a great service. If you believe you cannot change from one MLS to another, that is 100% not true. In 2018, NAR implemented a new rule called MLS of Choice. You have every right to be part of ANY MLS that you choose. If you have questions about this, I recommend you reach out to your state association, or you can shoot me an email at [email protected] and we can discuss this further. As an example of providing great tech support, check out the screenshot below for Greater Southern MLS out of Louisiana. Notice that support is available not just during the day, but late into the night when agents and brokers may still be working. Tech Helpline Tech Helpline provides tech support to approximately 650,000 individuals across the US and Canada. Chances are, this service is already available to you as part of your association or MLS fees. Not only can they help you with technology tools provided by your association, MLS, or brokerage, but they can also help you with other forms of technical support, including spyware removal, virus protection, and software repair. To get a better understanding of how you can benefit, take three minutes to watch the video below. Your Brokerage Ask your broker! Unless you work for yourself, turn to your broker. They should be happy to help. Remember, your broker was once an agent; they have needed help with listing presentations, websites, etc. If they cannot solve your problem, they can at least point you in the direction of someone that could help. You can also check out your brokerage's website. Companies such as Keller Williams provide a place on their site dedicated to support: https://answers.kw.com/hc/en-us. Chances are another agent has asked the same questions as you. Google Last, but not least: Ask Google. Google doesn't know everything about real estate technology, but Google does know a lot. If you ask the right questions, Google can help you find the answer. Your Turn You might be thinking, "I don't need tech support right now." This might be true, but it is best to know where to find help, even when you don't need it at the moment. For the next 15 minutes, I'm asking you to do the following to help: Bookmark this article. Visit the website for your most commonly used software and try to find their support information. Bookmark those pages and note the hours they are available. Visit your association, MLS, and brokerage's website and do the same thing. If your MLS doesn't provide tech support when you normally need it, reach out to them and ask if they can expand their hours. If they say no, it might be time to consider finding a new MLS. Come back next week to learn how to find a technology solution that works for you. If you have any questions about how to find tech support or have suggestions for other articles, please feel free to reach out to me at [email protected] or on LinkedIn.
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From an MBA to RPR: A Realtor Success Story
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FBI Negotiating Skills Every Real Estate Agent Should Know
Pushy sales tactics. One-size-fits-all solutions. Talking over you and underwhelming you. We've all experienced a bad negotiation situation. You don't feel heard, you question the motive of someone trying to "sell" you, and the whole process can make you uncomfortable. In real estate, if your clients feel any of these things, your business is going to suffer. Many veteran agents joke that you have to be one part counselor to make it in this business, and it's not too far from the truth. Emotional intelligence is critical to real estate negotiations, the effectiveness of your customer service, and your business as a whole. So how can you sharpen your emotional IQ and excel in negotiations? No better place to start than the country's top FBI negotiators. (Go big or go home!) Chris Voss, former negotiator for the FBI (the lead in international kidnapping cases) and founder and CEO of the Black Swan Group, shared his top strategies from the bureau in his book, Never Split the Difference. The real estate process and sales scenarios don't necessarily warrant the delicacy of a hostage situation, but you and your business can benefit from his tactics and experience. Leveraging Emotional Intelligence in Sales The first concept that Voss wants you to toss is the idea that denying or ignoring emotions will help you with any sort of negotiation. Good negotiators not only identify the emotions present on both sides of a situation, but they know exactly how to influence them. "Emotions aren't the obstacles to a successful negotiation; they are the means." In real estate, it's easy to want to pitch your service offering at every opportunity, tell the sellers how much better you would be as their listing agent than the competition, wow your buyers with your knowledge about a property—but when it comes to working with your prospects, the first step to really delivering is to talk less and listen more. This is the foundation of emotional intelligence. You can glean so much information (sometimes more than people would actually like you to know) by simply observing and listening. In today's digital world, listening doesn't have to just mean in conversations. Opportunities abound when you listen to what people are sharing on social media. Thanks to sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc., you can follow along and listen as people tell you they are relocating, adding to the family, changing jobs. The FBI's Top 5 Negotiating Techniques for Your Real Estate Business: 1. Mirror your client's words and actions (selectively) Think of this as active listing boiled down to a science. Mirroring communication is one of the fastest ways to build rapport, and it's as simple as repeating the last few words someone said back to them. It acknowledges that you're listening and it creates an environment where people feel safe and comfortable sharing. It's crucial to gather as much information from "the other side" (your client, a listing agent, a new lead) as possible, and when you mirror and repeat key words from their own sentence, by nature, responses will offer more information and points will be further clarified. Here's an example: Prospect: We don't need to sell our home. We're just curious to see the value now.Agent: I understand you don't need to sell. It's a beautiful home in a great spot.Prospect: Yeah, we love it. It's getting a little tight, but still works for us, and we just did some work on the kitchen.Agent: Nice! Work on the kitchen?Prospect: Just some updates—new appliances... See? Just by reiterating keywords, you can start building a connection and find out some important information. Pro tip: When negotiations are in full swing, a skill like this can also help slow down the conversation and buy you some time to think before you answer a question or reply. 2. Work for a "no." Sales 101 is to work for the yes, right? Yes! But, Voss feels that being pushed for "yes" makes people defensive. It's that pushy sales game we all fear and the person you're working with will start to sense a trap. In the legal world, lawyers even call this "cornering." That doesn't sound like a pleasant situation. Working someone to say no, however, helps them feel a sense of control, not manipulation. Ask no-oriented questions, like: "Is now a bad time to talk about a new listing?""Would it be horrible if we tried looking at a new area?""Are you trying to sell your home really quickly?""Have you completely scratched this neighborhood off the list?""Are you scared of a fixer upper?" While these won't always generate the "no" you're looking for, you'll start noticing ways in certain situations to generate a no, and further open up the person on the other side by making them feel like they're calling the shots. 3. Practice proactive empathy This sounds like a complicated idea, but really it means showing your counterparts that you understand the way they're feeling. This means labeling their concerns (and this also means paying attention!). Saying things like: "It sounds like you're concerned about selling your house by the end of the summer…" or "It seems like you're afraid of going over budget…" can help to disarm someone who is worried or anxious. A great exercise to help with this technique is to brainstorm a list of the worst things the other party could say about you, their potential issues or disappointments, and try to address them before they can. For example, if you think your buyer clients might be worried about a lack of scheduled showings in their price range, go ahead and address this before the issue can fester (or even arise!). "I know it might feel like we've been in a bit of a drought, but I want to show you a market update for your favorite neighborhood to let you know what the inventory and pricing situation has been like." Try to pepper in some solutions too. Perhaps you know of a new house coming on the market, or something exciting is happening in another area they should consider. 4. Keep the other side talking The secret to gaining the upper hand in a negotiation is to give the other side the illusion of control. Don't try to force your opponent to admit that you are right. Ask questions that begin with "How?" or "What?" so your opponent uses mental energy to figure out the answer. Voss explains that these two interrogatives can be extremely powerful in negotiating, as they encourage the other side to keep talking, to clarify and to eventually reveal their true intentions and motives. "You'd like to settle on these terms? What is it about this 30-day window that works for you?" Likewise, with "how?" if someone demands $1 million in ransom, Voss's response might be: "I understand, but I need you to take a look at the whole context here. Tell me, how am I supposed to do that?" This causes the other side to actually put themselves in your shoes. It forces them to be on your side for a moment, and you get the opportunity to hear them thinking out a plan. When you listen closely to that, you can almost certainly uncover hidden motivations. 5. Make 'em say "that's right" We aren't working for the yes, necessarily, but we do want to trigger "that's right." Why? This means you've convinced your counterpart that you understand them. You understand what they're searching for in a home, or what they're looking for when selling their house, or even that you understand their needs better than they might. The moment you've convinced someone that you understand their dreams and feelings is the moment a negotiation breakthrough can happen. You can get to this response by summarizing and reaffirming how your counterpart feels and what they want (kind of a mirroring/proactive empathy hybrid move). When you've done this correctly, it will trigger a "that's right," and that response will be based on feelings and passions that are driving the other side (that they may not even realize!). This creates a little a-ha! moment and simultaneously confirms that they share empathy with you. Negotiating for Success In real estate, you spend your days negotiating for something. In fact, our careers, finances, reputations, love lives and even the fate of our kids at some point hinge on our ability to negotiate. By using the strategies above, ones grounded in emotional intelligence, you're guaranteed to have the competitive edge in any discussion, and build better relationships in your real estate business. To view the original article, visit the BoomTown blog.
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How to Use Instagram Carousel to Boost Your Business and Win More Listings
For real estate, Instagram is a great social platform for agents to expand their network, market properties, and acquire more listings. Predominantly through images, Instagram gives power to agents, teams, and brokerages looking to show off their businesses and listings. Instagram offers a variety of promotional options. One of the hottest new ways to give your listings a big boost and make your sellers smile is by leveraging the power of Instagram carousels. What's an Instagram Carousel? An Instagram carousel is a post or ad containing multiple photos or videos that you swipe or click through one image at a time. According to a study from Socialinsider, carousel posts produce the most organic (unpaid) engagement on Instagram. Carousels average 1.92% average engagement per post, compared to 1.74% and 1.45% average engagement for image and video posts, respectively. More impressively, some agents trace their big business boosts specifically to Instagram and its carousel posts, according to the social media experts at Curaytor, a marketing firm for top sales agents. When used correctly, it creates more engagement with your target audience and keeping their interest. Creating an Instagram carousel post involves selecting multiple images to make a post. You add a caption and copy, plus "tags" you want to include. You create a "tag" on Instagram by attaching a specific label to a post, picture, video, or status to group it with other content that uses the same label. Tags help you reach more people on Instagram with your messages and photos. A carousel post lets you share up to 10 images or videos as a single post. Therefore, you have an opportunity to create posts that have a punch. Here are some strategies for enhancing your business with an Instagram carousel: Copy is as crucial as imagery: Having appealing images in your Instagram carousel is vital for successful real estate marketing. However, it's also important to make sure you create powerful copy as well. Even if you have fantastic photos in your carousel post, it may be ineffective if the accompanying content doesn't get the message across. For example, for a listing post, compelling copy often raises curiosity about the listing you're promoting or prompts interest by asking a clever question. Highlight the property's most powerful features: The beginning of your Instagram carousel post should start the most dramatic photo of your listing. In most cases, it should also be a full house photo. In the carousel, highlight and explain the home's key features, such as hardwood floors, a built-in wine cellar, modern countertops, energy-saving air and heating systems, and other memorable features that make this home stand out. Tell a story: The advantage of a carousel post versus a single image post is that it allows you to tell a story. Every listing has a story, from its unique features and benefits to its location and history. With the right photos, graphic text, and video clips, you can tell an interesting and convincing story for each of your listings with a carousel post. Don't use all the carousel slots: While a carousel post can hold up to ten images or videos, that's a maximum limit, not a goal. It's best to select a few photos that are more likely to engage your audience. Having too many images can have the opposite effect. Like most communication channels, the attention span on Instagram is minimal. Less is often more when it comes to an effective carousel post. Leverage video content: Adding video clips to your carousel may seem like a time-consuming process, but it's simpler than you think. Since today's smartphones can take high-quality videos, you'll have the opportunity to showcase a listing's best feature in a way that a photo can't. Videos also make people stop scrolling to watch, increasing their attention span to your post. Like images in a carousel, it's essential to make sure the videos included helps improve your message to your target audience. Don't add a video to check a box. Show off your market: Instagram carousel posts are a great way to showcase your local market, something you can't do with a single image post. A local market post allows you to give context to your listings: what does the neighborhood look like? The local community and its amenities? You can provide a behind-the-scenes recap with a carousel post. ABC – Always Be Creative: Because carousel posts offer you more variety and versatility, this is where your creativity can shine. Don't know where to start? Follow other agents on Instagram known for their success with Instagram. You can find many with a simple Google search. Review their creativity to help inspire ideas of your own. You can create a carousel post with customer testimonials recommending your business, promoting a new service, or recapping a local event. Using Instagram carousels can be a great way to keep in touch with your customer base and win more leads. Remember, if you have any questions about technical challenges when using social media, you can connect with a Tech Helpline specialist with a click, call or email. To view the original article, visit the Tech Helpline blog.
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The Top 5 Reasons Real Estate Agents Get Sued
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How to Get 5 Reviews in 5 Days
Imagine being in a new town and looking for somewhere to eat. Years ago, you may have started your search by stopping at your hotel's front desk for a recommendation, or asking someone familiar with the area about their favorite restaurant. But times have changed. Now, you simply Google "restaurants near me" to find the best place for dinner. Things are no different in real estate. Whereas people once found real estate agents through phone books and yard signs, now 90% of people start their home search online. And one of the first things they'll do to find an agent is type "real estate agents near me" into Google. For agents, then, being the first thing that buyers and sellers see when they look for a real estate agent on Google provides a huge advantage compared to competitors who are further down in the rankings (or not on Google at all). How do you make sure that you are the first agent that people see on Google? Simple: Set up a Google business profile and start collecting Google reviews. A Google business profile appears at the top of Google search and Google maps, complete with your Google reviews and review rating. It gives you a competitive edge, so long as you're frequently getting positive Google reviews. The data proves this out: Agents who set up a Google business profile and collect five or more reviews appear in nine times more searches and net 17 times more calls and texts from leads. Agents without reviews? They'll languish deep in Google search results where buyers and sellers can't find them. So, how can real estate agents easily earn Google reviews? We recommend that agents: Request five reviews each week. Use the Homesnap Pro+ One-Click Review Tool. Ask as many people as possible for a review. By following these tips, agents can build a stronger reputation on Google and keep themselves front and center on the world's biggest search engine. 1. Request 5 Reviews Every Week It's the life of an agent: Not everybody agrees to tour the home or buy the property. Soliciting reviews works the same way, and our data show that agents receive one review for every three or four that they request. For agents, the best strategy is to incorporate a review request into their daily to-do list. You can request one review each day by: Incorporating a review request into your closing process. If your client had a good experience, invite them to share it in a Google review to help you get more business. Requesting a review after providing a client, friend, or fellow agent real estate advice. Adding a link to your Google review page to your email signature. By asking for one review every day, you can consistently cultivate the positive reviews that will rocket you up Google's search results. 2. Use the Homesnap Pro+ One-Click Review Tool Since receiving reviews is essential to being visible on Google, agents should use the tool that earns three times more positive reviews: Homesnap's Pro+ One-Click Review Tool. With the One-Click Review Tool, agents no longer need to request reviews through individualized emails, awkward conversations, and time-consuming phone calls. Instead, agents can invite clients, colleagues, and personal connections to leave reviews on Google with just one click. As a fully-integrated component of Homesnap Pro+, the One-Click Review Tool also pulls all your Homesnap contacts, which allows for easy, one-click review requests. The One-Click Review Tool isn't just convenient, it's essential. The benefits of a positive review diminish over time, so consistently earning new reviews is necessary to maintain a prominent Google search result. 3. Ask as Many People as Possible for a Review When asking for professional recommendations, it's normal to go first to satisfied clients and fellow agents. But you shouldn't stop there. Ask for reviews from as many people as possible. Neighbors, friends, family members — all of these people can testify to your character, work ethic, and attitude. Google wants to know you're trustworthy and gives reviews from your clients the same weight as reviews from anyone else. Generate reviews from anyone and everyone you trust to leave a positive review. More questions about how to earn five reviews in five days? Use our lead generation tip sheet. To view the original article, visit the Homesnap blog.
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Realtor Blogs Are the New Billboard Advertisement
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12 Tips to Help New Agents Kill It in the Real Estate Business
While becoming a real estate agent can be a very fulfilling professional career for many, the rigors of building a book of business can drive some to the brink. Many are attracted to the industry by the upsides: a potential for unlimited income, flexible schedules, and the opportunity to meet new people. Truth be told, building a successful real estate business is hard—it takes a lot of time and tenacity to get up and running. Research has shown that nearly 80% of new real estate agents leave the industry within their first year. But don't despair! We took a look at the common behaviors among successful new agents to give you 12 solid tips for winning in real estate. 1. Know Your Expenses Before Becoming an Agent Make sure to calculate your expenses. Don't forget that becoming an agent is similar to opening up a business. Ensure that all of your expenses, such as rent, food, clothing and other bills, are paid before you can invest in the right tools to help you succeed in this industry. 2. Take Brand and Marketing Seriously As an agent, you are a business and what better way to get your business out there than marketing? 3. Invest Early in a Good CRM Adopting and mastering new technology into your workflow can put you ahead of other agents. Having a great CRM can be like having another team member on your side. 4. Answer Your Phone! There is nothing worse than missing a phone call from a potential lead. 5. Leave No Lead Behind Moving is a big decision, and for that reason, it can take months to years to finally buy or sell a home. As a new real estate agent, you have to be ready to work those leads for the long run to close deals. Learn to nurture and build those relationships to become successful. 6. Build Relationships, Not Just Leads Every successful agent should work on developing interpersonal skills to help them build relationships. 7. Listen to Your Clients' Needs Too many real estate agents are thinking about the financial gains instead of listening to the client's needs and wants. The ability to listen, learn and teach your clients will increase your chances of closing a deal or even receiving future referrals. 8. Nurture Your Sphere of Influence Your SOI is the ability to have some influence over those in your close circle. SOIs can be extraordinarily valuable and a huge asset in becoming successful in this industry. 9. Always Stay Up-to-Date on the Industry and Continue Learning The real estate industry is constantly changing, and not every method you try is going to work. The best way to stay up to date and grow is to continue learning, whether by joining webinars, taking classes or getting a mentor. 10. Get a Mentor You have questions and mentors have answers. Connecting with mentors can be helpful in helping you as a new agent learn about the industry and hearing about other methods and processes that can better the way you grow as an agent. 11. When in Doubt, Partner with Another Agent There are pros and cons of partnering up with another real estate agent, so when deciding to take this step, take the time to consider them thoroughly. Some of the pros when working with another agent are the ability to divide and conquer, give you more credibility, and the ability to share your knowledge and experience. 12. Don't Be Afraid of Failure Agents that tend to be successful in the real estate business are the most determined and ambitious. Do not get it wrong, though; they've learned to fail and still keep going. Not everyone can make millions in the real estate business, but if you are ambitious enough, willing to learn from your failures and pick yourself back up, you never know. Main Take Away Real estate agents must stay knowledgeable, determined and ambitious in this job, no matter what stage they are in within the industry. Get off the computer and go out there and apply all the knowledge. You'll never know if these tips and tricks work without just doing it. To view the original article, visit the Rental Beast blog.
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Friday Freebie: Mortgage Calculator and Amortization Schedule Tool
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3 Strategies to Running Your Real Estate Business
You are visiting RE Technology's site to learn how to use technology, which in turn will help you learn how to run your real estate business. If you are like me, you also read books--even when you don't have time--to get new ideas. Recently, I was reading Slow Burn by Stu Mittleman. His book teaches the reader how to run further, faster, and for longer periods of time. As I was reading this, I knew almost immediately that this also applies to how to run a business. Three strategies that Mittleman introduces are How to Think, Train and Eat for the Distance. The ideas below have been morphed for you, the real estate agent. Enjoy! Thinking for the Distance Success is 80% psychological and 20% strategic—the classic 80/20 rule. I hear Tony Robbins say this all the time, "Before we can improve our business we must improve ourselves." That is why the first item discussed in Slow Burn is how to think. Mittleman focuses on believing in yourself, staying in the moment, and setting process-oriented goals. Believe in Yourself. No matter what you are trying to achieve, you must believe in yourself. A great example Mittleman uses is when he was hired to train hotel staff to run the New York City Marathon in just six short weeks. Only one of the 27 runners had ever run further than a 10k. How was he supposed to train them in just six weeks to run 26.1 miles? Easy—he taught them to believe in themselves. This is where you must start. Before you can accomplish anything, you must believe that you can do it. Stay in the Moment. Running a successful business is more like running a marathon, versus running a sprint. So many of us are focused on the future or the past that we forget what is right in front of us. We are chasing the next thing and not enjoying the moment. I imagine that a few of you have children. I have two myself, and so often we are focused on what WE are doing next that we forget to enjoy the moment we have with those around us. We must learn to stop and enjoy the moment. Set Process-Oriented Goals. Say you have a goal to run a marathon in the next three months. You train your butt off until you reach that goal. You pat yourself on the back when you are done—but then what? Another marathon? A 5k? It's hard to say. Oftentimes, we completely stop doing the things that helped us proactively reach our goals once we set them. This is done in business all the time. We set a goal for five transactions a month, work our tails off until we get there, and then pat ourselves on the back. But is that it? No! Instead of focusing on the goal, we should focus on the processes. Instead of being focused on completing five transactions a month, each day we should focus on ONE referral, ONE new lead, ONE client meeting, etc. If we remain in the present, we will accomplish our goals in no time. Training for the Distance Now for the 20%. We cannot reach our process-oriented goals if we are doing the wrong things. To train for the long-term growth of your business, you need to buy the products that fit your business, focus on your form, and build a customized plan for your business. The average broker offers twelve products to their agents. Twelve! Do agents only use the products their broker offers? Of course not! They use products from their association, MLS, and what they buy themselves. That is a lot of stuff to learn. But do you really need them all? No. You need to figure out which products actually work for the type of business you are creating. If you are a new agent, a complicated CRM does not make sense. You need something simple. Once you have selected your products, then learn everything you can about them to help your business grow. Always keep training. Training leads to proper form. With the training you receive for the products you have decided to use, you must learn how to use them properly. That is form. Doing the right things the right way—that's how you should train. Once you have your products, training, and form down, then it is time to build yourself a customized plan for growth. I would not recommend someone go this alone. There is always someone that has done what you are trying to do. Learn from them. Learn from their mistakes to build your plan to move forward. Eating for the Distance Now, for the easiest of the three. Eat for the long-term growth of your business. Your business (and yourself) will suffer if you don't eat right and stay healthy. I am not going to tell you how to eat. I am not going to tell you about the best diet. This is a technology website, not a nutritional site. What I will tell you is the same thing that Mittleman says, "Personalize Your Food Strategies." We are all different. What works for me, may not work for you. Personally, I am allergic to gluten. If I ingest gluten, then I end up with a migraine for three days. When I personalize my food strategy, there is no gluten in sight. You must decide your meal plan based on you. However, the reason for eating right is to have the energy to help your business grow. Without that energy, thinking right and training right doesn't matter. Your Turn In my last two articles, 3 Tips to Master Your Gmail Inbox and 3 Zoom Tips to Look 10x More Professional, you were immediately able to stop and take 15 minutes to practice the tips. These strategies take a bit more time to execute. But in all fairness, they will have the biggest impact on your life and on your business. In the next 15 minutes, schedule weekly time (approximately 60 minutes each week) to work on these three strategies on how to run your business for the long term. You will not regret it. If you are interested in reading Mittleman's book Slow Burn, you can pick it up from Amazon here. Come back next week to learn how to find tech support for your products. If you have any questions about these business strategies or have suggestions for more, please feel free to reach out to me at [email protected] or on LinkedIn.
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5 Things Every Agent Should Do This Holiday Season!
Let's just go ahead and call the last quarter of the year "holiday season." Right? Every year, it's as if the first nine months are practice for cramming everything possible into the last three months of the year. Pumpkin-spiced creations hit the shelves and the inevitability of "Fall" smacks us in the face (even in climates where Fall isn't really a thing). And then beginning with Halloween, the calendar loses its mind. Children are out of school for Thanksgiving and Christmas following torturous holiday plays and band concerts. Veteran's Day, umpteen teacher workdays, getting ready for Hanukkah, corporate America taking weeks of vacation they didn't get a chance to enjoy the first part of the year, and frantic preparations to get the house ready for the extended stays of family are enough to drive you crazy. And on top of that, you've still got a real estate business to run. To make sure it's running after the holidays, the one thing you absolutely must continue to do is prospect. Schedule BEFOREHAND: Adding one more thing to your packed plate is difficult, but by scheduling a Holiday Postcard Campaign ahead of time it will make sure you are remembered. Colorful, well-designed postcards scream "Happy Holidays" and "I'm still here for you!" Give notice (if you're going to be out): There are few more frustrating things for a potential client than reaching out to an agent – and getting zero response. Let everyone know when you'll be available. That way, they can plan, too, and enjoy their own holiday. A preemptive "Thank You" or holiday card with your intended Out of Office schedule might be more helpful than you'd imagine. Immediately follow up: I know, I know…I shouldn't have to say this, but we've all hit that wall where the last thing we want to do is grind out that 87th call or 200th email at a time that is always inconvenient. But it's the holidays, so put on your happy face. Return that call in line at Target, respond to that email as soon as you can, call the client back after you listen to their third voice mail. This is second nature to a good agent but doing so in the middle of the holiday season establishes even more trust in your client's mind. "My agent stopped what they were doing to answer a question I thought was silly." They'll tell their friends, who'll tell their friends. Behold, the power of networking. Take advantage of inventory lulls: Spring may be the most popular time for a move, but the holidays present their own benefit – low inventory and the potential for a higher asking price (for the seller). People are constantly moving, and houses are constantly for sale, but the end of the year can be a choke point. [NOTE: The pandemic-era real estate business continues to be a complete anomaly.] By properly using real estate mailers and keeping your ear to the ground, and understanding what's available in your market, you'll be better positioned to help that client move just in time to host (or avoid hosting) this year! Be where your competition isn't: Saturating your targets with information letting them know you're ready, willing and able to help them at a CRAZY time of year speaks volumes to the kind of agent you could be in the heat of the real estate season. Make sure they know your name, your successes in their area or neighborhood, and what you're willing to do for them while your competition is sleeping off eggnog or on vacation celebrating early. They'll notice. This isn't rocket science. We all know that. But by capitalizing on small things and hammering the need for prospecting up to – and through – the holidays, you're setting yourself up for a great New Year and beyond. We say location, location, location, but none of those sales will ever come to fruition without genuine, passionate, deliberate and effective prospecting, prospecting, prospecting. Happy Holidays!
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SentriLock Lockbox Member Training
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Why You Should Call Tech Support First, Not Last
Before cars had GPS navigation systems, people got lost a lot more often. Researchers explained that men were predisposed only to stop and ask for directions as a last resort response when lost. The same type of reaction is true today for many of us when a technology glitch occurs. We often try to first fix the problem ourselves instead of immediately reaching out for help. The problem often becomes what we think will take a couple of minutes to correct ends up taking a lot more time than we ever imagined. Ten minutes of troubleshooting can quickly turn into 30 minutes or more before we give in and seek assistance. The best practice? Go ahead and pick up a phone and call, chat or email tech support – first, not last. That's what Don Rathbun, a Realtor Emeritus with Florida Realtors, did when faced with a tech problem. He reached out to Tech Helpline, which for him is a member benefit. That means his call to Tech Helpline was free, but the help he received was priceless. "From the start," Rathbun shared, "[Alex] understood [the] problem. He was extremely patient and went above and beyond to make the necessary adjustments so that I would not have the problem in the future." He also thanked Tech Helpline for "having people like Alex available to help us." For Sally Harasz, a Florida Realtor member from Ponte Vedra, getting professional help was the only option. She explained that Tech Helpline analyst Adrian "was a huge help to me today, and I am most grateful." "I gave him the challenge of finding and restoring 22 GB of files, and he methodically looked through various computer systems and functions and restored all the documents. I am now back up and running and in business," Harasz said. Agents rely on technology now more than ever During the pandemic, real estate became more dependent on technology than ever before. The 2021 Technology Survey from the National Association of Realtors documented the impact. Some 78% of all respondents said that eSignature was their single most valuable technology in the last 12 months. Local MLS apps/technology was second (54%), and nearly tied for second was social media (53%). With 90% of respondents using Facebook in their real estate business, it's clear that agents rely on technology to remain connected to their clients. More technology tools coming While tech tools for transaction management, CRMs, lockboxes, video calls, and showing software integrated deeply in the day-to-day workflow for nearly every agent, the chance of an agent that needed help has also increased dramatically. For example, in 2020, Tech Helpline and Form Simplicity provided more support and training for more Realtors than ever in a single year. More technology is coming, so the need to have reliable and accessible tech support isn't going away. The Technology Survey also found that in the next 12 months, respondents say that the five technology tools they will use in their business will be eSignatures (73 percent), social media (53 percent), local MLS apps/technology (47 percent), customer relationship management or CRM (44 percent), and lockboxes (43 percent). Looking 24 months ahead, respondents believed that drones (37 percent), cybersecurity (34 percent), 5G (31 percent), and virtual reality (30 percent) would be the most impactful emerging technologies to their businesses. Adopting and adapting to new technology always can be a struggle, as Diana M. Gardner, President of the Albermarle Association of Realtors in North Carolina, noted. Call for help first, not last For agents like Greg Gosselin, a member of the 2020 NAR Housing Opportunity Committee and the Maine Association of Realtors, contacting tech support first saved him a lot of time, allowing him to focus on his business. He encountered a "Windows nightmare" and reached out to Tech Helpline, provided by his Realtor association as a member benefit. "My day was not consumed with technical issues but with income-producing work." The bottom line: let the tech experts focus on helping you fix your glitch and get back to business by reaching out first. Hopefully, your association or brokerage provides you with free access to Tech Helpline. If not, ask them to check out techhelpline.com, as the importance of getting fast tech support is now a must-have for agent productivity. Do you have a Tech Helpline story to share? Tag #TechHelplineHelpedMe in your social media post. Tricia Stamper is Director of Technology at Florida Realtors®, which owns and operates Tech Helpline and Form Simplicity.
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How to Create Mailing Labels in One Minute in RPR
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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
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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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3 Zoom Tips to Look 10x More Professional
Last week, you read 3 Tips to Master Your Gmail Inbox. Those tips, once mastered, will help you save time every day. These next three tips on how to use Zoom will help you look even more like the professional that you are. You will learn how to add a virtual background, how to change your name, and what your camera angle should be. Zoom Tip #1: How to add a virtual background This is excellent, but not a requirement for your Zoom meeting. Having a virtual background can look both good and bad. Before I get into the good, the bad, and the better, let's talk about the "how." During a Zoom call, click the little up arrow ^ to the right of the start video button. Then select Choose Virtual Background. This will bring up the Settings. You can either choose an already existing virtual background, or you can upload a new one using the plus sign (+) on the right of the image. Voilà! Now you should have a virtual background. If selecting a virtual background is not an option for you, then your account settings have to be changed. For how to turn those settings on, I will refer you to this how-to article written by Zoom. Now for the good, the bad, and the ugly. As you can see from my image above, I selected an image of Earth. Which is fine, BUT that doesn't help tell my story. So, our recommendation is for you to create a background using a product like Canva. This helps to create something that has your company's logo in the top left or right corner and the rest of the image follows your company's branding. You might think creating your own image is scary, but it is not. Companies such as Canva now make it extremely easy for people to create their own images. Now for the bad. You may have noticed during your Zoom calls there is a distracting line around people when they have a virtual background. This can be very distracting to those in the meeting. If your background image looks like this you might want to question if a virtual background is right for you. This is where we get to the good stuff. The better. To make a virtual background look really good, use a green screen. This does not have to be expensive or troublesome. It really is just a green sheet that is stretched out flat behind you. When you select a virtual background, you would then also select the option that you are using a green screen. This will make your virtual background look professional and awesome. Zoom Tip #2: How to change your name I don't know about you, but I can be working in one of four different Zoom accounts. A problem that I come across all the time is no one knows who I am until I change my name. First, select Participants. Then, select More next to your name. Click on Rename. Change your name, select Rename again. And you are good to go! Changing your name so people know who you are is essential. I have been on hundreds of Zoom calls with both WAV Group and RE Technology and too often there are people that I don't know on the call. This helps the host know exactly who is there. BONUS TIP: If you are meeting new people, add the name of your business after your name, like this: "Michael Nash | RE Technology." This helps people not just know who you are, but also which company you are with. Zoom Tip #3: Pay attention to the camera angle I've saved the best for last. Pay attention to the camera angle. Many of us today use laptops. This causes the camera to be looking up at us. What do the people you are talking with see? Mostly up your nose! You don't want people looking up there! Instead, position the camera so it is at eye level, or slightly higher, like the image below. This angle is much better for others on the call with you and definitely makes you look more professional. Now it is your turn My homework for you today is to spend the next 15 minutes trying out each of these Zoom tips. They will help you look more professional during your Zoom meetings with clients, your broker or other professionals. Come back next week for an article on how to think, train, and eat for your business. I will be talking about Stu Mittleman's book, Slow Burn, and how it applies to your business. If you have any questions about these Zoom tips or have suggestions for more, please feel free to reach out to me at [email protected] or on LinkedIn.
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Stay on Top of Your SOI All Year Long
Who can tell me what a real estate agent's best source of free referral business is? Exactly, your Sphere of Influence (SOI)! And who can tell me the best ways to keep the well full and the fountain flowing? There are actually a number of ways to stay on top of your SOI, and we'll explore some of them today. But the single trick you most want to remember when it comes to keeping in touch with your SOI is: Recurrence! For the uninitiated, your SOI is the group of people you already know whom can contribute an almost limitless number of contacts and networking to help you find clients. There is an innumerable list of people that can make up an SOI. Anyone from former teachers, your spouse, your fraternity brothers, coworkers at an old job, the guy who runs the landscaping service you use, the person who stages your sellers' homes, your extended family, and so many more in between. The trick can be keeping those various plates spinning at the same time; a dropped plate could mean a missed opportunity. Not everyone is ready to buy or sell a house today—right now. And you aren't always going to be top-of-mind for your SOI when the time comes when someone they know is ready to purchase or unload. Scheduling a sphere of influence marketing campaign can ensure you are automatically staying in touch with them all year long. It's recommended that you keep your SOI list right around 150 people. This ensures you can maintain meaningful relationships with these people. Some companies will even guarantee extra closings if you consistently send real estate mailers to your sphere every month. Planning ahead can be as simple as understanding who makes up your SOI and figuring out the best ways to stay in front of them. Sometimes it's a conversation at the coffee spot, or attending HOA meetings in amazing neighborhoods, or just taking the time to answer a question from someone who's "thinking" about selling, but not ready yet. But the absolute key is to stay in front of them, making your contact with them predictable and commitment-free—and by all means wash, rinse and repeat. ProspectsPLUS! knows the power of repetition. That's why recurring outreach is critical and will ensure your SOI knows you're their go-to for real estate referrals (and rewards). Learn more about their 3 Extra Closings Guarantee here.
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Why You Should Target First-time Sellers
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What's the Difference Between Marketing and Advertising?
Kenneth Jones, an award-winning real estate broker and appraiser, shares the key differences between marketing and advertising. It's important agents understand the difference between these two in order to implement a succesful marketing strategy for their real estate business. Here's Kenneth: The difference between marketing and advertising is... I don't want to seem like I'm prolonging what should be a simple answer, but I really want you to UNDERSTAND this—not just THINK you understand this. We've all heard the words "marketing" and "advertising." And, while we all "hear" those words almost everyday of our lives, most people see them as meaning the same thing—a distinction without a difference. Well, they'd be wrong. Let me explain the differences. What Marketing Is MARKETING is the process of building a familiarity between a company, or a product, and the general public. It's the development of a relationship with the public, rather than trying to get someone to buy their product or service at that moment. Marketing serves a far broader purpose than advertising. But marketing also includes advertising. Think about it: without advertising, how else would anyone know that the company, product, or service exists? But the big difference between ads that are developed for "marketing" purposes and the ads developed for "straight advertising" are that marketing ads are only to make you aware of the company, their product, or their service. Marketing ads are not intended for you to do something or buy something now. Another characteristic of marketing is that this relationship building occurs through a variety of different events. The pre-planned series of marketing events is commonly known as a "marketing program." An example of a marketing program is a company sponsoring a special TV program, or a continual series of programs, or a major sporting event such as the Sony Open in Hawaii golf tournament. In real estate brokerage, when I refer to creating a marketing program for a property that my company is trying to sell, I'm talking about making other real estate agents and the general public familiar with the property. One example of a real estate related marketing event is holding a broker's open house where I invite other active agents to a semi-social event at the home being sold. The purpose is for them to become familiar with the property so they can match it up with one of their buyers. Another example of marketing is when a company buys the right to place their name on a sports arena, such as the Prudential Arena—a.k.a. The Rock—home of the New Jersey Devils NHL hockey team in Newark, New Jersey. The name of this arena represents the Newark-based Prudential Insurance Company. Some argue that "marketing" and "branding" are the same thing. And while they do overlap, "branding" is intended to make the public aware of the visual identity of a company, specifically their logo graphic. To see an example of "branding" vs. "marketing," let's go back to the Prudential Insurance Company. While putting their name on the sports arena is an example of "marketing," their logo, which is on the side of the arena building, is an example of "branding." So, when you see that graphic of a blue rock in that circular pattern and you think of Prudential Insurance, you've just experienced "branding." That's because this image is "branded" in your brain. So when you see this logo, you automatically associate it with Prudential Insurance. Now that you have an idea of the difference between marketing and branding, let me tell you the distinct difference between marketing and advertising. What Advertising Is ADVERTISING is intended to get someone to do something or buy something NOW. The best examples that distinguish advertising from marketing would be things like those supermarket ads. They're telling their prospective customers, "Here's the price you can buy this item for until 'x' day." The implied message is, "If you don't buy it by 'x' day, the price is going to change." The greater implication of the message is that the price will go up, So you'd better buy it NOW! In real estate, when a home advertisement is also intended for a prospective buyer to act NOW, commonly used terms are "Don't miss this opportunity," and "See it before it's gone" in order to try to motivate prospective buyers to see the home being offered. In the end, the difference between marketing and advertising is that while marketing simply says, "This is who we are and this is what we do," advertising stresses a sense of urgency—do something NOW before you miss the opportunity. To view the original article, visit the Zurple blog.
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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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The Real Estate Marketing Materials Every Agent Needs
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14 Benefits of Virtual 360 Tours for Real Estate Sales and Marketing, Part 2
We're back this week with the second half of our list of the top benefits of virtual 360 tours for real estate (see Part 1 here). Below are the final seven key benefits of virtual tours in sales and marketing according to some of the best agents in the industry. 8. Better qualified buyers Attract more motivated, qualified buyers with a 24/7 open house. First of all, aren't you tired of tire kickers or next door neighbors coming to the open house and wasting your time? Secondly how many people can you run through an open house on the weekend? Virtual 360° tours allow everyone to have what they expect. The buyers can browse through hundreds of properties without leaving their home. Agents get only qualified buyers that have already seen the property and are ready for a final showing. How good is that? You can finally focus on negotiating the price with the right customers. According to Morris Short of REMAX Xtra, using a virtual 360° tour can get even 120 people doing a showing in one day! Can you beat that in any other way? Of course not—the times have changed and your life as an agent can be much easier. 9. Sell to anywhere in the world Sell properties from anywhere and to anyone in the world. International or interstate customers are buying properties in Sydney and New York without even flying there. Brandon Read, Ray White Cairns, Australia just confirms this as they sold a million dollar property using a virtual tour without the buyer flying in to Cairns. They only viewed the property using a virtual 360° tour. Even single agents creating virtual tours sell properties to interstate buyers. After COVID, remote work allows many people to leave expensive metro areas and follow their dream of living in a more affordable suburban or rural location. These buyers or tenants expect to see their options without having to travel. 10. Significantly shorter showings Agents can enjoy quicker showings as potential buyers have already seen the property online and all of its features. Agents using virtual reality tours to sell real estate are reporting that their time spent on showing houses has dramatically decreased as buyers have seen the properties beforehand. They have inspected every corner of the house, they have discussed it with their family and friends simply by sending them the link to the virtual tour. When they arrive, the kids run straight to their already chosen bedrooms. Everyone is happy as there is no unnecessary time wasted on either side. As mentioned previously, sellers don't have to leave the house for as long. 11. Save time on traveling Save your time on driving to open houses that nobody comes to. How many times have you driven to your Saturday open house for 20-30 minutes just to have nobody come to see your property? You could have been having drinks with your friends or watching your kids play football! If you pre-qualify buyers and they confirm their presence, you will save a lot of driving time. Agents that have been in the real estate industry for almost 20 years tell us they are tired of such exercises and would rather use virtual 360° tours to present the properties. Moreover, agents using VR tours report they do four instead of eight showings per week, thanks to virtual 360° tours. 12. Incredible convenience and transparency for buyers Allow buyers to revisit the property again and again without you having to accompany them. Buying a home is never a single person decision, and if one person came to see your property, they have to go back home and explain to their family how the property looks like and what is so exciting about it. The regular photos don't do it justice, but a virtual 360° tour delivers full transparency. 13. Easier quotes for renovations Allow buyers to discuss potential renovations to the property by showing 360° tours to their contractors. Buyers can consult the renovation specialists and get some idea on what can or can not be changed inside of a property, e.g., if the kitchen can be extended or if a small wall can be removed and how much such a renovation may cost. Moreover, a virtual 360° tour can be virtually renovated so that the buyers can have a preview of what it might look like. 14. Virtually transfer buyers to the property Present all properties you can't access to buyers in your office by using VR goggles. Each virtual tour can be viewed in a VR headset, which allows buyers to feel like they are really standing inside of the property. Agents like Jo Mooney have been sending cardboard VR goggles to potential buyers so they can just insert their mobile phone into them and immerse themselves in the space they are considering. That's how she successfully sells sight unseen! Learn how you can create unique virtual tours in under 15 minutes for less than $3. Book a free information call here. To view the original article, visit the Virtual Tours Creator blog.
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How to Create a Killer Real Estate Content Calendar
Are you the agent that plans all of your social media and blog posts, or are you the agent that just posts spur of the moment content based on your mood? Everything in your business needs to be planned in order to be successful and your real estate content posts are NO exception to this rule. In order to maximize reach on your real estate content, it is important to put together a marketing content calendar. Here are four tips to help you maximize your real estate content strategy: Research Spend a few hours researching some of the latest trends in the real estate industry or in real estate industry news. Use this time to cultivate a list of articles that you have found and want to share with your fans and followers, or a list of topics that you are going to start writing about yourself. You should be setting aside a few hours every week to do this so that your content stays fresh. Of course you are going to stumble across content that is share-worthy from a few months, or even years ago, which is fine, but keep in mind that current content is often more relevant. If you are going to use old content, try to rewrite something and put a current-day/relevant spin on it. Pro Tip: For those spontaneous agents that want to find content the day of a post, doing a bit of daily research can help you be a planner and spontaneous at the same time! Consolidate all of your calendars into one First things first—if you have multiple calendars to look at everyday, get rid of all of them except one of them. With multiple places to find information, there is a really good chance that you will have a hard time staying organized. Put everything on one calendar so that all of your deadlines are in one place. If you want to go above and beyond, color coding is a great way to make your information easy to find. This also eliminates issues of your colleagues or assistants not being able to find information that they need in order to successfully assist you. Pro Tip: If you are color coding your calendars, make sure that you have a key so that you don't ever have to question what things mean. Set reminders Remind yourself when you need to be posting your content if you don't have an automated posting tool to pre-schedule your posts ahead of time. Sometimes you can get stretched a little bit too thin at work, and tasks fall through the cracks. Don't let posting engaging real estate content be one of the items that fall through the cracks. Once you have a reminder, whether it's a daily or weekly reminder, you will find yourself falling into a routine and not feeling overwhelmed with the fact that you are being reminded to complete a task. Pro Tip: Don't cancel your reminder even if you are able to remember your posting schedule. There could be a day in the future where you are going to need that extra reminder. Better safe than sorry, right? Share your content Share your content on as many platforms as your heart desires. With the abundance of social media platforms available today, you have a lot of choices. You also have your personal website, emails to your clients/potential clients. Your sharing ability is pretty limitless these days. The more platforms that you share your content on, the more impressive your reach will be. Your business is only as well known as you make it, and creating a real estate content marketing calendar can help your business grow while keeping you organized. Get your content marketing calendar started today so that you can get ahead of the game. Are you ready to get your content marketing calendar started? To view the original article, visit the Zurple blog.
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Friday Freebie: Prospect List of 200 Targets in Your Area
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RPR Reports: Easy to Create, Hard to Duplicate
Reports are RPR's bread and butter--professionally designed deliverables that are easy for consumers to understand and that you can send to your clients in minutes (if not seconds). They're also a chance for you to communicate your unique message and your brand to every prospect and client. Agents who use RPR reports: Instantly respond to client needs with real estate reports that matter Create reports with as much or as little information as the client needs Brand each RPR report with their name, photo, logo and contact information Customize reports to include biographies, testimonials, and marketing tools Colorful, Client-friendly Real Estate Reports for Every Facet of Your Business Seller's ReportA review of the subject property that shows local market conditions, comparable properties, recommends pricing strategies and estimated seller proceeds. Property ReportA summary of property characteristics, such as values, foreclosure activity, market statistics, demographics, history, taxes and school information, as well as before-and-after photos. Mini Property ReportA slimmed down version of the Property Report that includes the property's estimated value; home facts like bedrooms, baths and square footage; and photos. Property FlyerA quick glance at a property, including a photo, property information, a map, and your contact information and branding. Valuation WorkbookAn in-depth value of a property used as backup material for a lender or client. Market Activity ReportA profile of market changes based on listing information and MLS data, including active, pending, sold, expired and distressed properties. Neighborhood ReportA summary of economic, housing, demographic and quality of life information about an area. School ReportThis report summarizes student populations, testing outcomes, parental reviews, ratings, and contact information about a public or private school and will even display homes for sale in that school district. How to run Your RPR Report Log in to narrpr.com Type in the property address and enter The RPR Property Details page appears Select the Create Report button Click " + " to select which datasets to include Personalize the report with the recipient's name and a message Choose a delivery method (Display now or email) Select Run Report Pro Tip: Report Customizations You'll Want to Know About To view the original article, visit the RPR blog.
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Boost Your Deal Flow with This Easy Step
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It's All in the Details: Florida Agent Kaisen Mitchell on Standing Out in Today's Hot Market
With its beautiful beaches and endless sunshine, Sarasota remains one of the most competitive housing markets in the country. This means that having an excellent real estate agent is more important than ever. Sarasota agent Kaisen Mitchell shares tips on how to win offers and secure more listing clients. Mitchell says that most houses in his market are getting 5+ offers—one even received 12 offers in just a few hours of being listed! He also adds that the highest offer doesn't always win and encourages agents and buyers to do the following when submitting an offer: "Think outside the box" - While many people are waiving contingencies and appraisals, offering a short inspection period better protects the buyer and often yields the same result. Reach out to the listing agent - Ask what the seller is looking for and what's going to help them during the transition. Figure out what's important to the seller and then cater to that. Set realistic expectations with buyers - If houses in their preferred area are receiving multiple offers above the listing price, prepare them to bid accordingly and be aware that they might have to make up the difference if the house appraises below the selling price. Know your market and be prepared to act quickly - It's critical to be aware of what's happening in your market and be prepared to immediately go see a property and alert your clients. Stay in touch with everyone - Constantly communicate with your clients and agents. Provide your clients with frequent updates, and let other agents know what listings are coming up or what type of properties your clients are interested in. Use tools to help you stand out from the competition - Mitchell uses smart presentation platform HighNote and believes it helped him beat out 37 other offers in a recent property bidding war. He used the Offer Template that HighNote provides and included a video of himself presenting highlights of the offer. He was able to view the analytics and knew that the agent/sellers were reviewing the offer. And, even though his clients didn't have the highest bid, they still won the deal. Mitchell uses HighNote for sellers as well. When a seller contacts him, he sends out a presentation that includes information about him, the power of his brokerage, stats and what they've recently sold in the area, and a marketing timeline that he created from another HighNote template (HighNote offers a variety of free sample presentation templates and marketing tools). He also sends a sample of the professionally-produced video that they do for every listing. Finally, he includes sample marketing pieces. "HighNote is an extremely powerful tool. I use it every single day now," says Mitchell. "Thanks to the analytics, I can see when someone is opening the presentation, and what they're looking at. So I know I'm not just throwing it out into the wind and hoping for something to happen." Be sure to check out Kaisen's brokerage, Nest Group with Coldwell Banker Realty, and follow them on Facebook. And if you're a real estate agent looking to take your business to the next level, click here to get started with HighNote!
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14 Benefits of Virtual 360 Tours for Real Estate Sales and Marketing, Part 1
Did you know that, according to Zillow.com, listings with 360 virtual tours sold 10% faster and were 22% more likely to sell within 30 days than listings without. Unless you have been living under a rock, you saw the whole industry change because of the global pandemic. Here are the key benefits of virtual tours in sales and marketing according to some of the best agents in the industry. 1. Put your online presence on steroids Ninety percent of buyers are looking for properties online first and virtual tours definitely help you improve your visual appeal and Google positioning. If you think your letter drops are doing the work and getting you leads, that's fine—but in the post-COVID era, being digitally present and having some sort of Google search position is now more important than ever before. Sellers and buyers both take advice from the internet. If your face or your brand is not there on top of the search, you may soon be hurting for business. 2. Online showings 24/7 Buyers simply don't have time to do open houses every weekend, so give them a chance to inspect a property from the comfort of their own home and from any device. Virtual tours are a win-win situation for agents, sellers and buyers according to Lora Bladow, REMAX Excel agency owner from Schofield, Wisconsin. For agents, they save time on driving multiple times to open the door to a property. On the other hand, buyers don't have the time or even the opportunity to visit 35 homes in one weekend. A virtual 360° tour allows all to have a showing whenever they want to. And last but not least are the sellers that will not have to leave their house every weekend for a few hours to vacate the property for potential buyers. Virtual reality is a tool that allows you to have an outstanding marketing package. 3. Stand out from the crowd All listings look the same—they have photos, videos or even drone videos. But that's not exactly what your customers want. According to research, more than 70% of buyers would love to see a virtual tour of the house they found online before making a decision to go to the open house. 4. Reduce time of property on the market Agents using virtual 360° tours can reduce the time a property spends on the market because they can efficiently present the property to a much wider audience of not only local but interstate and international buyers. In rural areas, our customers managed to get DOM down from 160 days to two to three weeks. According to Lora Bladow, REMAX Excel, her listings not only sold faster but also at higher prices as there was more competition amongst buyers. 5. Win more listings Win listings by blowing sellers' minds away. Only 3-5% of agents worldwide are able to make their own virtual tours, so if you want to stand out from the crowd, follow the advice of Edgar Natolo, Nat Group owner, Gold Coast, Australia and beat your competition hands-down by offering virtual 360° tours in your marketing package. Some sellers are desperately waiting for you to come in and save them from other agents who can't present their property in the most efficient way. 6. Create your own brand Create your own unique, personal brand that stands out from the crowd and makes people take notice. If you improve your marketing and services with the latest and greatest solutions that are available on the market, like virtual 360 tours, you will undoubtedly be noticed and talked about in your local area. Using such technology can easily get you access to the local news and will definitely build up your image in the local community. And this, my friends, is GOLD ! 7. Never lose a listing again Win sellers by impressing them with your immersive technology and impressive marketing mix. Agents using DIY 360° technology say that many times they have been able to secure listings as they did the virtual 360° tour on the spot during the listing presentation. It's not what you normally do, as you should have the house prepared and staged for the photos. But if the owner wants to test you, you can take out your camera or your iPhone and do a demo virtual tour for them on the spot on your mobile device. This will knock them off their feet, make you the best person for selling their house, and win you their trust. Read more in Part 2... To view the original article, visit the Virtual Tours Creator blog.
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4 Mistakes Real Estate Agents Make with Personal Relationships
Building and maintaining relationships is essential to living a happy life. It is even more important for real estate agents who rely on these relationships for future clients and referrals. Through my personal experience with friends who happen to be real estate agents, there are a few mistakes that I've seen that can lead to some awkward moments or loss of future business. 1. Being a Real Estate Agent First It is a good practice to keep reminding people that you are in the real estate industry. If you don't talk about it, then people might forget you are still an agent. Be that as it may, there are certain times when soliciting your services can be inappropriate and turn off future prospects. Sometimes it can make sense to just have a simple conversation to catch up with your friends—without putting them in an awkward situation where they have to say "no" to your services because they have no need for them (or don't know anybody who is looking). When somebody posts, "I need an agent!" on Facebook, they'll be more likely to recommend one of their FRIENDS that is an agent—instead of a real estate agent on their Friends List. Be a friend first. 2. Not Keeping in Touch I'm guilty of having a large friend list on Facebook, and a few thousand followers on Instagram and TikTok. It's hard to stay in touch with each individual person. However, that is what is needed to maintain a personal connection. This is the same as having a CRM full of leads, but never following up with any of them. Some real estate leads will need to be nurtured for months before they are transaction ready. This is the same with personal relationships. You can't expect for somebody to want to work with you if you haven't spoken to them in over a year. Imagine that guy from highschool you had mutual friends with trying to sell you solar panels out of nowhere—it's the same situation. 3. Using Social Media Only to Advertise People who are doing social media wrong are only posting about themselves and focusing on what type of content they are going to publish. People who work social media effectively might not even ever have to post—instead they are liking, commenting, and sharing posts from people within their network. Maybe even sometimes they will slide into their inbox with a question about a recent post. These types of interactions will make a stronger connection with your friends online, and will make a stronger impact on your business. 4. Bad Timing of Life Changes I'm adding this one here from personal experiences. There are major life changes that can signal a change in one's living situation. Marriage, divorce, and parenthood are good examples. I've had some great interactions with agents that congratulated me on my wedding and let me know they are there for me if we ever decide to upgrade to a new home. I appreciate that, because those are friends. Then there are some that find out we are expecting a baby—but I haven't spoken to them in years, they don't ask questions about how we are doing, solicit their services—and the baby isn't even born yet. To view the original article, visit the Zurple blog.
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How to Leverage Social Proof as a Real Estate Agent
"Smart marketers know that social proof is the marketing tactic for easing the minds of worried customers." Social proof is the new cornerstone to a focused marketing campaign, because it's the type of collateral that connects happy customers to prospective customers -- and with the bombardment of modern marketing messages, this will strike a chord faster. According to a Nielson report, 83% of consumers in 60 countries say they trust recommendations from friends or family over any other form of advertising. Why Social Proof Is the Driving Force of Your Marketing Plan Before we get too far ahead of ourselves here – what exactly is social proof? Social proof is a psychological phenomenon where an incredibly strong force influences our behaviors. It's where people assume the actions of others in an attempt to reflect correct behavior for a given situation—people around you condition you. Why is this so you ask? People trust other people. And they trust people they can relate to. This influential form of marketing is effective because it hits close to home. For instance, developing a case study or gathering testimonials from happy clients in your neighborhood and using it to nurture prospects will go a lot farther than telling them why you're a perfect fit for them. The mentality of a client is, "Well if they did that well for our neighbors, what will that mean for me?" Which is why you show, rather than tell. How to Arm Your Social Proof Arsenal In the real estate world, upwards of 60-80% of your business can come from referrals, making your Sphere of Influence (SOI) the lifeblood of your livelihood. Which is why it's important to build the foundation of your core network and start squeezing positive marketing collateral from them. Here's how to get started. Listen on Social Media In this digital arena, there are conversations going on all around you. When you receive a positive comment from a happy client, be sure to send them your thanks and ask if they would agree to you using their comment as a testimonial. Survey Clients After You Close When the moment is still fresh, and you've had a successful working relationship, ask if they would provide a quote, or be willing to use this experience as you develop a case study. Don't wait until a few months later to ask – jump on it when the emotions are at their peak! Go Local You can also have what they call in the marketing world "celebrity social proof," which is when a prominent figure vouches on behalf of your brand or product and you can use this for your own benefit. Now you don't have to have Denzel Washington speaking up for your brand, but rather look locally if newspapers or business associations have given you praise. For example, "See why The Globe and Mail chose us as the top real estate brokerage for the Toronto area!" It can add a lot of weight when a reputable publication writes about you, so be sure to highlight that testimonial and company logo across all of your platforms. Just Ask! Simply put, you miss 100% of the shots you don't take. The worst thing that can happen when you reach out to a client for a testimonial is they will politely decline. Where to Use This Social Influence Strategically So we understand the why and the how – now it's time to discuss where to use this powerful artillery of social proof. The short answer is that you can use this on every digital touch point of your brand. There is a full range of areas where you can showcase this social proof: Client testimonials are snackable quotes that can be used everywhere Develop a full case study story on the end-to-end work you did for a client Have it prominently displayed on your website in the "upper fold" Take advantage of a compelling quote in your email signature Use quotes on your social media cover photos. Stories really connect with consumers because we remember how we felt when we heard a story. They are more persuasive and trustworthy than statistics because numbers get thrown around far too often and it's hard keeping track. Key Takeaways This is the peer-to-peer revolution where the consumer takes back control and uses information as power when evaluating a real estate professional to work with. This is a new digital age where people have a sea of data to research while doing their homework before executing on a decision. The conversations are happening all around you, and it's wise to corral some of these positive interactions to start using them strategically and sharing them with your prospects! Store and use this social proof interchangeably all in one place with a high-powered real estate CRM and be able to call on them in a moments' notice. To view the original article, visit the IXACT Contact blog.
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Trending Now: Smart Technology, Smart Marketing, Smart Realtors
Real estate technology in 2021 is giving you ways to shape your future. Whether you are focused primarily on residential or commercial property, you can't ignore the changing landscape of your industry. Now is your time to take advantage of proptech trends to boost your brand, increase buyer awareness, grow your leads, and keep those referrals coming. As threatening as the word sounds, technology is your friend and it can influence the way you do business and the way the consumer judges your competency. The popularity of smart devices, social media, and video streaming are reasons to take note and implement these tools into your real estate marketing plans. Get social Not a day goes by without someone discussing something happening on their social media feed. According to a recent NAR survey, social media is one of the most valuable proptech tools for real estate agents. With buyers and sellers checking out Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube regularly, these channels are places where you can share one of the best proptech trends 2021 has to offer: the virtual tour. You have been using 3D videos and virtual tours throughout the past several months to offer a way for the consumer to easily navigate a property. But now you can allow the user more control using interactive floor plans with 360° panoramic visuals. The best part is you can share it all on your social media channels, websites, or even host a live tour where you can interact in real-time with your clients. Added value Everyone wants an upgrade and, in real estate, there are ways to provide added value to your clients by giving them the benefit of an immersive floor plan with the accurate square footage of a property. Measurements are important especially when communicating value to the consumer. Complimenting a virtual tour with an interactive floor plan allows for seamless navigation throughout every space within the property. When using real estate technology in 2021, be sure to include advanced measurements to assist the buyer when making important decisions for renovations, insurance claims, or placement of furniture. BIG data One of the most useful proptech trends 2021 has to offer real estate agents is data. Bigger is better when it comes to analyzing all the important facts and figures in the industry. How does big data affect your day-to-day business? The consumer is looking for ways to compare and analyze potential homes to target their individual specifications. Big data allows you to provide insight into all the statistics you need to help the buyer on their journey. Everything from neighbourhood demographic information to walk scores, crime rates and the all-important selling and buying trends allow for better decisions based on analytics. Real estate agents can use analytics to track the success of marketing campaigns by using big data to compile user feedback, interest in a property, and the overall performance of every transaction. Easy to share with 5G Yes, big data is important but without the ability to share all that information you could be left waiting for long periods of time before you see results. Enter the power of 5G networks to support all the real estate technology in 2021. Transmission speed helps you get information to the consumer in a timely manner. 5G helps you connect all your virtual tours, interactive floor plans and communication tools quickly and less costly. High definition imagery, connection to cameras, virtual reality and massive data transmissions can happen instantly with the power of 5G. When you are looking to increase buyer awareness amongst millennials, their predecessors and successors, you need speed. Instant gratification is key when capturing the attention of a potential client. Lose the fear One of the biggest challenges facing real estate agents is the fear of proptech trends in 2021 and beyond. Let's face it, technology can be difficult to keep up with. But once you get past the fear of the changing landscape of the real estate industry you will embrace the trends and welcome newer and better innovative proptech. According to Realtor® Magazine, 84% of consumers want to see virtual tours of homes. Before the pandemic hit, you may not have considered using virtual tours as part of your marketing plan. But now immersive 3D tours and interactive floor plans with reliable square footage are the best way to market a property, increase leads, and get properties sold quickly. Technology gives you the ideal way to attract qualified buyers while providing a safe, unintrusive method of presenting a seller's home. Considering what is trending now and where real estate technology in 2021 has taken you. There is a whole lot more coming at you in the not-so-distant future. A reshaping of the real estate industry through proptech innovations is well underway, so if you want to stay in shape you need to be informed and embrace technology like your best friend.
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Please Join Us in Donating to REALTORS for Relief from Hurricane Ida in Louisiana
Hurricane Ida, a Category 4 hurricane, delivered 150 mile per hour winds and set a path of destruction that killed four and left 1,000,000 without power in Louisiana. Hurricane Ida's winds were 30 MPH stronger than those of Hurricane Katrina. The Realtors of the Northshore Area Board of REALTORS®, New Orleans Metropolitan Association of REALTORS®, Greater Baton Rouge Association of REALTORS® and Greater Southern MLS as well as Realtors in Mississippi felt the brunt of this natural disaster. The extraordinarily high winds literally made the Mississippi River flow upstream. Realtors are in desperate need of our help to get their families to safety and then to begin the expensive and arduous task of rebuilding their homes and their businesses. With the hottest real estate market in history, many Realtors and clients have lost thousands of potential transactions and billions of dollars in value. Please join us in donating to the Louisiana REALTOR® Relief Program and the Hurricane Ida fund in the KWCares program. If you haven't seen the devastation yet, take a minute to watch the following video HERE. If you would like to help, there are several opportunities for you to donate: 1. Louisiana REALTORS® Relief Fund Louisiana REALTORS® has set up a disaster relief fund that will provide much needed funding for victims of hurricanes and other natural disasters. The Louisiana REALTORS® Relief Fund was established in 2005 as a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation dedicated to providing financial assistance to Realtor members and the consumers they serve in times of natural or man-made disasters. The Fund has provided indispensable assistance to the Realtor community since its implementation following the catastrophic effects of hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005. Those who have suffered extensive damages due to the occurrence of natural disasters can rely on the relief fund to assist in their recovery and rebuilding efforts. The funds delivered ensure property owners can once again enjoy the pride of ownership, Realtors are able to practice their trade, and communities are revitalized and strengthened. Now the Louisiana REALTORS® Relief Fund are now going to be used to help Realtors recover from Hurricane Laura. Please join us in making a donation to help your fellow Realtors in their time of need. Donate HERE to Help Realtors 2. KWCares.org KW Cares grants provide much-needed assistance for Keller Williams associates and their families with financial hardship due to sudden emergencies such as: accidents, house fires, medical emergencies and unaffordable funeral and burial expenses. They also respond swiftly to natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, wildfires and floods, by providing funds for food, lodging, and transportation and by deploying generators, water and other disaster relief supplies. They are up and ready to help Hurricane Ida victims. You can donate HERE To view the original article, visit the WAV Group blog.
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7 Tips for Best Real Estate Listing Presentation Using 360 Tours
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4 Reasons Why the End of Forbearance Will Not Lead to a Wave of Foreclosures
With forbearance plans about to come to an end, many are concerned the housing market will experience a wave of foreclosures like what happened after the housing bubble 15 years ago. Here are four reasons why that won't happen. 1. There are fewer homeowners in trouble this time After the last housing crash, about 9.3 million households lost their home to a foreclosure, short sale, or because they simply gave it back to the bank. As stay-at-home orders were issued early last year, the overwhelming fear was the pandemic would decimate the housing industry in a similar way. Many experts projected 30% of all mortgage holders would enter the forbearance program. Only 8.5% actually did, and that number is now down to 3.5%. As of last Friday, the total number of mortgages still in forbearance stood at 1,863,000. That's definitely a large number, but nowhere near 9.3 million. 2. Most of the 1.86M in forbearance have enough equity to sell their home Of the 1.86 million homeowners currently in forbearance, 87% have at least 10% equity in their homes. The 10% equity number is important because it enables homeowners to sell their houses and pay the related expenses instead of facing the hit on their credit that a foreclosure or short sale would create. The remaining 13% might not all have the option to sell, so if the entire 13% of the 1.86M homes went into foreclosure, that would total 241,800 mortgages. To give that number context, here are the annual foreclosure numbers of the three years leading up to the pandemic: 2017: 314,220 2018: 279,040 2019: 277,520 The probable number of foreclosures coming out of the forbearance program is nowhere near the number of foreclosures coming out of the housing crash 15 years ago. The number does, however, draw a similar comparison to the three years prior to the pandemic. 3. The current market can absorb any listings coming to the market When foreclosures hit the market in 2008, there was an excess supply of homes for sale. The situation is exactly the opposite today. In 2008, there was a nine-month supply of listings for sale. Today, that number stands at less than three months of inventory on the market. As Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at the National Association of Realtors (NAR), explains when addressing potential foreclosures emerging from the forbearance program: "Any foreclosure increases will likely be quickly absorbed by the market. It will not lead to any price declines." 4. Those in power will do whatever is necessary to prevent a wave of foreclosures Last month, the White House released a fact sheet explaining how homeowners with government-backed mortgages will be given further options to enable them to keep their homes when exiting forbearance. Here are two examples mentioned in the release: "For homeowners who can resume their pre-pandemic monthly mortgage payment and where agencies have the authority, agencies will continue requiring mortgage servicers to offer options that allow borrowers to move missed payments to the end of the mortgage at no additional cost to the borrower." "The new steps the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Department of Agriculture (USDA), and Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) are announcing will aim to provide homeowners with a roughly 25% reduction in borrowers' monthly principal and interest (P&I) payments to ensure they can afford to remain in their homes and build equity long-term. This brings options for homeowners with mortgages backed by HUD, USDA, and VA closer in alignment with options for homeowners with mortgages backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac." When evaluating the four reasons above, it's clear there won't be a flood of foreclosures coming to the market as the forbearance program winds down. Bottom Line "The likelihood of us having a foreclosure crisis again is about zero percent." To view the original article, visit the BoomTown blog.
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How to Calm Frazzled Buyers and Sellers Amidst the Delta Variant
In this edition of "Ask the Industry," we ask real estate professionals their thoughts about timely topics related to the real estate industry. Today's post features: Katie Lance, CEO and Founder at Katie Lance Consulting Stephanie Vitacco, Broker and Realtor with Keller Williams Realty Inc. Ali Sherbach, Agent with Sherbach Team with Compass With the Delta variant renewing fears about the pandemic and forcing some companies to delay plans to bring workers back, what is your advice for agents to help calm buyers and sellers who may be reluctant to wade into the market at this time? Being mindful and respectful of different comfort levels is of the utmost importance Ali Sherbach, Agent, Sherbach Team with Compass, Brooklyn, NY "I think the best way to calm anyone feeling a bit frazzled is to ask lots of questions so you can get to the source of their anxiety. For sellers, if their fear is being exposed to the Delta variant, ask if it would be helpful if we had a strict protocol in place for showing their home.That could mean requiring proof of vaccination, masks being worn during appointments, showing the home by appointment only, or even having a virtual tour be the first step before an in person showing. For buyers, if their fear is job loss should we need to quarantine again, ask if it would be helpful if they had a mortgage contingency in their offer. Meaning if their mortgage fell through because they were no longer employed, they would be able to walk away from the purchase without penalty. Being mindful and respectful of everyone's level of comfort is of the utmost importance right now. And as real estate agents, we all need to remember that our level of comfort may be different from our clients', so we need to make sure we fully understand what makes them feel as safe as possible and act accordingly." Utilize social media to host virtual open houses Katie Lance, CEO and Founder, Katie Lance Consulting, Pleasanton, CA "I think it's important for real estate agents and brokers to meet buyers and sellers where they are and understand that everyone has a different level of comfort when it comes to the variants. I highly recommend agents and brokers become familiar with how to host virtual open houses for their sellers. Offer this as an option to help control the number of people through a home. Also, virtual open houses can help to generate great quality leads who are genuinely interested and qualified. Second, for buyers – if you are representing a buyer – I recommend you get familiar with some of the tools available to preview homes for your clients. One of the easiest ways to do this is through Facebook Live – but you can set your settings to just go live to you and your client. One reason to do this versus a traditional video is that video files can be massive and tough to send back and forth to your clients. A Facebook Live is quick and it's a recorded video that they can refer back to." Buyers and sellers will weather the storm Stephanie Vitacco, CEO of Team Vitacco and Realtor, Keller Williams Realty Inc., Los Angeles, CA "On the buying side, if a buyer is concerned or frazzled about getting into the market, it is important to know that interest rates are at a historically low point. If you are planning on being in a property for five to seven years, you will weather any storm. Buying is also much better than paying rent. If you take the amount of rent you pay over five to seven years and then compare it against what that would look like if you purchased — it usually always makes sense. On the selling side, there really are not a lot of frazzled sellers because it is such a strong market." To view the original article, visit the Homesnap blog.
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Friday Freebie: Virtual Listing Presentation Template
Here's the truth: people DO judge books by their covers, and companies by their websites--and you can bet real estate consumers are judging agents by how they present themselves. How are they judging you? More specifically, how are sellers judging you when you try to get them to list with you? Sellers are a sought-after source of business, and if you're not putting your best foot forward, you could lose that potential commission source. That's where this week's Friday Freebie comes in. Today, we're highlighting a professionally designed listing presentation template that can help you shine in front of homeowners. Free download of the 2021 Virtual Listing Presentation Template, courtesy of Zurple Put a bit of polish on your listing presentation with this digital template. The template is fully editable and brandable, and is available as a PowerPoint file that you can share digitally or print out and take with you. This free download includes sample scripts for connecting with sellers and instructions for editing your template. The listing presentation template itself includes the following pages: Cover page 'About me' and 'My experience' slides My recent home sales Testimonials The Home Selling Process Comps for recent sales and active listings Pricing strategy info Listing price proposal Marketing strategy and marketing samples Why you should work with me Next steps Ready to give your listing presentation an upgrade? Download the 2021 Virtual Listing Presentation Template now!
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RPR's 10 Best Real Estate Apps for 2021
Tech is no stranger to the real estate business. Nowadays you can perform a laundry list of tasks by just using your phone. Not to mention market yourself, post to social media, manage relationships, generate leads, create content and so much more. However, sometimes all that technology can get a bit overwhelming and it's tough to keep up with all the tech tools available to you. Perhaps you just need a quick list of helpful tools, in the form of digital applications, that can make you a more proficient and efficient agent. RPR's annual "Best of Apps" article's got you covered! Read on to see how your tech stack stacks up to our 2021 list. 1. RPR (Realtors Property Resource) Topline: Property data, tools and reports that will "wow" your clients and help you close more deals. Summary: Well, of course we're going to include RPR in our list of "favorite apps." But first one on the list? Bold! As a REALTOR®, RPR is your exclusive NAR member benefit. And with it, you can perform transactions, service your clients and build your business by: Researching properties for up-to-date data and information Creating Property Reports, Neighborhoods Reports, School Reports, Market Activity Reports and more Viewing recent activity and local market conditions around you Accessing tax, mortgage, historical and distressed data, and flood zones Searching for schools within an area or school district Adding photos, text and audio notes to any property Using geographic farming techniques to prospect for leads Utilizing maps to discover travel times and traffic counts Building bullet-proof CMAs and listing presentations Using the RPR app to respond to clients in seconds when you're in the field And that's just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to how much RPR can do for you and your real estate business. Get your app downloaded today: RPR from Apple App Store, and RPR from Google Play. Cost: Free! RPR is included in your National Association of REALTORS® dues as a member benefit. 2. Magisto Topline: An AI-powered, computerized video editor that makes video storytelling super easy. Summary: Magisto is an offering from Vimeo, who obviously have major video cred. This app (along with a desktop software version) helps its users create high quality video content, and do it quickly. Users edit the photos they want to include, then select stock templates, then add a title and select a music bed. Then the real fun starts! Magisto's AI program puts it all together into an eye-catching version which the user can edit or use as-is. For real estate agents, it's perfect for video home tours or promoting a highlight reel of yourself on social media or via email. Cost: $10, $20 or $70 per month 3. Sentrilock Topline: Offers the first and only combined lockbox, showing service, and experience management solution. Summary: SentriLock, which is owned by NAR, is an industry-leading electronic lockbox manufacturer and provider of property access solutions. SentriLock prides itself on being easy to use, reliable and secure. And of course, it has a digital application, called SentriConnect®, which allows REALTORS® to easily manage home access, showings, and client communication – all from their phone or tablet. In addition, REALTORS® using SentriKey Real Estate® have one-click access to property data via the RPR app on their iOS or Android devices—an integration that will prove highly valuable to REALTORS® who want to present on-the-spot data and reports to their clients. (Click here for details). Cost: For REALTORS®: $137.80 per month, plus a $50 one-time activation fee. 4. Forewarn Topline: Safety! Forewarn allows agents to work safer and smarter by instantly verifying a prospect's identity and potential risks prior to a face-to-face meeting. Summary: By nature, the business of real estate can sometimes involve talking and meeting with strangers. 99.99% of the time everything is perfectly fine and safe, but you can never be too careful. With the Forewarn app, agents can properly and safely plan for showings with a higher level of confidence. In seconds, with as little information as a phone number or a name, agents can verify a prospect's identity, criminal records, bankruptcies, liens, judgments, address history, and property records all in one place, leading to safer and more productive interactions. Basically, find out if people are who they say they are and do a little extra digging for good measure. Cost: $20/month with an annual agreement for individual agents. However, discounts are available for brokerages and associations purchasing licenses in volume. 5. Clicky Topline: Clicky tracks website traffic and behavior to help you improve user experience. Summary: Clicky helps you track important data on how your website is used by your visitors. It works very much the same way as Google Analytics, but several reviewers say Clicky's interface is more user-friendly. It offers metrics and heat maps that track individual website navigation. In other words, you can see what areas of your website visitors are clicking on and engaging with most, and conversely, what areas need improvement. Cost: Free, limited to one site with a maximum of 3,000 daily page views. Premium plans also available starting at $10 per month. 6. Stride Topline: Easily track your mileage, expenses and more. Summary: As a self employed, independent contractor, REALTORS® need to keep track of business expenses for tax purposes. The Stride app puts you on cruise control when it comes to keeping track of mileage by automatically uploading your miles. It's got some other nifty write-off features too, such as allowing users to import expenses from their bank account and keep track of receipts. And as a bonus, it also suggests deduction options, integrates with tax preparation software, and offers an IRS-ready tax summary. Cost: It's free! 7. TurboScan (Apple)/ TurboScan (Google) Topline: Make high quality scans of any hard copy document from your phone. Summary: TurboScan (Apple) / TurboScan (Google) turns your smartphone into a full-featured and powerful multipage scanner for documents, receipts, notes, whiteboards, photos, and various other everyday hard copies. However, you're not just snapping a pic and converting it to a PDF or JPEG. TurboScan uses advanced technology (algorithms) to accurately detect document edges, straighten out and correct perspective, eliminate shadows and set a perfect black and white contrast. Crisp, clear, scanned docs and the price is right! Cost: One-time $6 fee 8. Follow Up Boss Topline: An entire CRM in your pocket that streamlines sales activities for real estate agents, teams and brokerages to help them better manage their leads. Summary: If you're looking for an all-in-one customer relationship management software tool, Follow Up Boss sits proudly in the corner office. This well-reviewed real estate CRM is designed to help sales agents follow up faster and more often, with the people most likely to turn into deals. Notable features include auto-send for emails, inbound and outbound call management, drip emails, and automated text messaging in one streamlined interface. Another huge benefit of Follow Up Boss is that it integrates with tons of lead sources including Zillow, Realtor.com, Homes.com, Ylopo, Facebook and many more. And its list of business-building features is never-ending with categories including basic CRM, Marketing, Reporting, Lead Providers and Integrations. Check out their site for full details. Cost: Free trial for 14 days, then $69 per month, with price increases depending on the number of users. There's a reason Follow Up Boss is pricey—it packs a performance punch and should be looked at as an investment vs. an expense. 9. Mojo Dialer Topline: Dialing system and lead generation platform. Summary: If you're not familiar with auto dialing systems, here's how they work: you make an outbound call from your phone through the Mojo platform. Once you connect, the system begins dialing the numbers in your list. When a lead answers, you hear them immediately. As you progress through the list, Mojo knows what phone numbers to dial next. Users don't even hear the ringing, which makes long prospecting sessions a breeze. Numbers that ring busy, are disconnected or don't get picked up, roll over to the next number automatically without manual input. And if you run into an answering machine, you will be able to leave pre-recorded messages. One last thing: this app is the mobile companion app for the Mojo Dialer, which means you can untether from your desk and make your calls from anywhere. If you're an old school prospect dialer, Mojo might be for you. Get yours on! Cost: $99 for a single user, per month 10. Cloze Topline: A smart CRM and AI assistant in one that automatically keeps track of your email, phone calls, text messages, meetings, documents, and social media. Summary: Besides being one the best-named apps we've ever seen, Cloze is also the hassle-free way to manage everything about your business in one place. When you need client information fast, the Cloze app syncs and pulls data automatically from your most used platforms to provide you with every detail needed to stay on top of client relations. And data entry? A thing of the past with this app. It also compiles your communication history with a client, including emails, calls, and exchanged files. And their proactive artificial intelligence prompts you to keep in-touch, with the right message at the right time. Cost: From $17-$42 per month And that's a wrap on our best of apps for 2021! To view the original article, visit the RPR blog.
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A High Offer Isn't Everything: How Buyers Can Sweeten the Deal in Other Ways
Palm Beach County, Florida remains one of the strongest real estate markets in the country due to great weather, lack of income tax, low inventory, and reasonable home prices. Jeff Lichtenstein of Echo Fine Properties says that buyers need to think beyond price when they find themselves in a bidding war. Lichtenstein says that the highest offer doesn't always win, and offers some tips on being prepared in competitive situations: Educate buyers on the market, and stay in control of the situation. Agents must have a plan and a schedule. Find out what the seller wants. Sellers hold most of the cards right now, so it's critical to understand what their wants and needs are, and act accordingly. Speed is a major factor. Clients can't sleep on it overnight and think about whether or not they want to buy it. Include short periods of acceptance. If your clients see a house at 10 am, write up the offer and give the sellers until 5 pm to respond. Try to get the earliest appointment possible to view a home. Use an escalation clause. Include in the contract that if someone matches the buyer's offer in 24 hours, your buyer will match it and go up by $1,000. Escalation clauses can be used for other things besides money. Agree to be flexible if the seller wants to shift the closing date or lease the property back. Make a big deposit. In the past, 10% was always a good deposit, but offers with larger deposits (25%+) are being taken more seriously. Use a local lender. Local banks can usually close more quickly than a big national bank. Having good communication and always acting/looking professional is also key, and Lichtenstein uses HighNote (a smart presentation platform) as a cornerstone of his communications efforts. He and his brokerage use the tool in multiple ways—introducing their agents and brokerage, showcasing their home selling process, agent onboarding and recruiting, etc. Several of his agents use it to send out a schedule of activities to their clients that includes links to developments and homes they'll be viewing on a particular day. "We can communicate better with HighNote than if we just write and send a generic email without the pretty pictures. People absorb the information faster that way, by seeing the photos and the writing that's next to it—whether you're putting in a .pdf, video, link, a picture, or even a Word document," Lichtenstein explains. "Plus, the analytics lets us know if they've opened it up—if they're looking at it for a long time, we know they're an interested party. Or if they haven't opened it, then we can call and ask if they've seen what we've sent. We love that feature," he says. You can follow Jeff and the entire ECHO Fine Properties team on Facebook and Instagram, and learn more about HighNote at highnote.io.
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How to Optimize Your Real Estate Video Marketing
Video isn't the next hot thing--it has been the hottest for a while now. What's changed during the past few years is how videos are created, marketed and consumed by viewers. You no longer need professional-grade equipment and expensive editing software to produce engaging content. Low barriers to entry is one reason there's been a boom in new content. And this accessibility is exactly why real estate video marketing needs to be among your top priorities this year. More importantly, consumers are watching videos at a higher rate than ever before. Currently, Americans average 18 hours of video-watching per week, which is two hours more than a year ago. It's increasingly the go-to method for learning about a product or service, with more than two-thirds of people preferring videos to text or other types of content. If you're ready to put more fuel into your real estate video marketing, then read on. We'll discuss techniques for maximizing video and leveraging the right platforms to promote it. Three Tips for Better Videos Although consumers are gobbling up video hours like candy, it's just as easy to flip to the next shiny object if the content isn't interesting. So, how do you maximize your precious video time? Keeps these three main points in mind when you're creating your real estate video to ensure it's as engaging as possible. This goes for listing videos (e.g. walkthroughs) as well as brand awareness/promotion (e.g., an intro to you and your services). 1. Keep it short When people are browsing social media, their attention span is limited. The interesting thing is that the length of time they are willing to watch a video differs by platform. This mostly has to do with expectations. For example, people go to YouTube specifically looking for video content, so they expect it to be more in-depth and are willing to watch longer. On social media, on the other hand, consumers are only willing to spend so much time per post before moving onto the next. Here are ideal video lengths by platform that HubSpot's research uncovered: Instagram: 30 seconds Twitter: 45 seconds Facebook: 1 minute YouTube: 2 minutes The takeaway here is that you need to get your message across as quickly as possible and cut out any fluff that lengthens your video but isn't engaging. Front-load your videos with need-to-know content at the beginning in order to both hook watchers to stick around longer and ensure they learn the most important points before exiting the screen. You can and should publish longer versions with your MLS listings or on your real estate website. Buyers browsing those spaces are similar to YouTubers in that they are expecting and want to watch an in-depth video. 2. Include audio and subtitles A majority of people don't turn up their volume to listen to audio (hence the "volume up" and "sound on" emojis and stickers that appear on many videos). While you should include audio for those who do want it, you must also include subtitles for everybody else. It's the only way for you to provide context or important details if they aren't listening in. Many programs will be able to intelligently apply subtitles for you, but just make sure that the text is accurate and well-spaced throughout your video. If not, go in and make edits to ensure you're publishing high-quality, accurate content. 3. Be visually engaging You may think "easier said than done," but that's not true. Your best judgement will guide you in the right direction. Chances are you also enjoy watching videos, so you will instinctively know whether the video you make is snooze-worthy or worth watching. There are a few things you can keep in mind that will help you ensure you're keeping it visually engaging. First, make sure the rooms are well-lit. Don't shoot at night, and when you record during the day, open all the windows and let natural light flood the space. Use indoor lighting when you don't have a window to open or if the level of sunlight is too low. Second, don't move the camera too fast or too slow. If you're doing a walkthrough, you don't want to speed through a room so quickly that you force viewers to pause or rewind. Move too slowly and you'll lose viewers, especially those who have their audio off. Finally, ensure there is an interesting focal point in all shots. For example, if you are doing a walkthrough and there isn't staging furniture set up, don't pause on a wall as you describe the room. Keep panning the camera or move to another room so you keep viewers interested in learning what's behind the next door. One last step When you've finished your video, share it with close friends or colleagues who can give you honest feedback. You won't need to do this forever—you can sign off on the video yourself once you become more accustomed to real estate video marketing. Where to Promote Your Videos Too many real estate agents fall victim to publishing their videos with the MLS property listing and stopping there. You did the work, so you should promote it far and wide! Here are a few locations across the web where you can reach interested buyers and sellers. 1. Social media If you already have a following on specific social media platforms, like Facebook or Instagram, then you should definitely share your video natively so your fans can interact with your content. It's also important to invest some of your advertising budget in your real estate video marketing. Push it out to those who don't already follow your business pages but are in your sphere and target audience. When your sphere sees your ads, it's a reminder that you work in real estate (so many people forget!). By promoting your content to your target audience, you are widening your sphere of influence by introducing yourself to new potential leads and improving your brand awareness each time they see your ad. Homesnap can help you set up and target your video ads on Facebook and Instagram in just a few clicks, and you get to choose everything from the dynamic design to the lead form to the daily budget. Check out our video ads for real estate agents for yourself. 2. Your Google business profile No matter what type of video you create—whether brand-focused or a walkthrough of a listing—you should publish it to your Google business profile's media section. This is just another piece of content that will help leads and prospects get to know you better and see you in action. If you don't already have a Google business profile, now is the time to claim your space and get started. In addition to being a key place to extend your real estate video marketing, it's integral for branding and establishing credibility. 3. Homesnap Buyers and sellers browse Homesnap daily, looking at new listings, comparables and, of course, agents and their real estate profile. If your listing videos are already in the MLS, they will automatically be attached to your property listing in Homesnap. But you can take it one step further and create unique content just for buyers and sellers who check you out in Homesnap. Homesnap Pro agents can add a Story (similar to those on Instagram and Facebook) to each of their MLS listings. You'll record content and add text, graphics, filters and more right inside the Homesnap Story creator. Your completed Story will be available to those who look at your individual listings, as well as your public profile in Homesnap. See how easy it is to get started! You can also promote your Homesnap Story as a targeted ad on Facebook and Instagram just by selecting the boost story option. A final thought If you aren't already creating marketing videos for your real estate business, today is the best day to start. Don't forget: Practice makes perfect. The more often you produce content, the more natural it feels to be in front of and behind the camera. After you see for yourself the high level of engagement that videos get, you'll be wondering why you didn't start making them sooner! To view the original article, visit the Homesnap blog.
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Close the Year Strong: 5 Ways to Regroup, Recharge and Reach Goals
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Up Close with the Only Transaction Management Platform Made for Teams
Real estate teams are growing in popularity, with 30% of Realtors now working on a team (NAR's 2020 Member Profile), up from 26% in NAR's 2018 Team Survey. The real estate technology sphere has responded to this growth, and team versions of many products are now available. In fact, we took a look at this development in our 2021 Success Guide to Team Software. While we highlighted solutions that help real estate teams stay productive and earn more business, what was missing from our Success Guide was the type of platform that's crucial to any team's business: the transaction management system. Today, we seek to remedy that with an up-close look at dotloop. Why dotloop? To our knowledge, rather than simply having team features added onto an existing platform, dotloop is the only transaction management platform built specifically for teams. Dotloop also integrates with a multitude of other team platforms, including the majority of those featured in our Success Guide. That's reason enough for us to use it to explore the world of transaction management for real estate teams. You can use this overview to understand what a team transaction management platform should offer, and as a point of comparison when researching which platform is right for you. Let's dive into an exploration of dotloop's major features for real estate teams: Team Branding Real estate teams operate as a kind of "brokerage within a brokerage," and rather than their branding being superseded by or subordinate to the brokerage's branding, teams want their own branding front and center. Dotloop's team dashboards are branded to your team, not your brokerage's. This branding is visible not only to your team, but to clients as well. Your dotloop Success Manager will take care of this for you during your orientation call (more on that in a bit). Team Member Profiles and Admin Control Each member of a team has their own profile, and administrator-level users have access to all team members' profiles. Everytime a transaction (or "loop" in dotloop parlance) is created, admins are automatically added to that transaction for complete transparency. This total access lets admins do something dotloop calls "Act on Behalf," where the admin can log into any agent's profile and accomplish tasks on their behalf. That way, if an agent is, say, on vacation or otherwise unavailable, tasks and documents can still be taken care of. These "Act on Behalf" actions are recorded in the Activity Log to inform who did what and in case the transaction is ever audited. Custom Templates and Workflows Within many solutions, templates are typically created at the brokerage level. But within dotloop's team platform, teams have the ability to create their own custom transaction templates. Administrators create these from their own profile, and the templates filter down to every single agent. Admins can even mark which documents are required to fill out in order to submit the transaction for review. You can also add customized clauses and tasks, including pre-loaded checklists for buyers, sellers, agents and administrators that auto-populate into the transaction. These checklists can be customized according to your workflows, and the tasks within can be assigned to any person added to the transaction. Dotloop will automatically email a reminder to the person assigned to the task as the due date approaches. To keep your workflow streamlined, documents within a transaction are listed in order of how the agent needs to work on them. See the grayed out items in the screenshot below? These optional items are placeholders added by the admin. Agents can drag and drop PDFs onto these placeholders to make them active documents. One feature we thought was neat was "Local Service Providers." This is available within every transaction, and users can simply click on the button of, for example, mortgage to add a loan officer to the transaction. If desired, dotloop will introduce the local vendor and client to each other for you by sending an email to the vendor letting them know that your client has requested additional information. Reporting Few things have gained as much importance in the modern era as performance analytics. To that end, dotloop offers a reporting dashboard at both the agent and administrative levels. Individual agents can see how many loops they created in the last 30, 60 or 90 days. The graph will show what's completed, what's under contract, what fell through and what's new. The graphs are interactive; if you click on any colored segment on the graph, it will show you which transactions are included in that calculation. Administrators can look at any individual's stats or bundle them together to look at the team's numbers as a whole. They also have access to dotloop's Report Builder. Here, reports can be built off custom criteria like transaction status, review stage, and by date. All reports can be named and saved within dotloop, and downloaded as an Excel spreadsheet. Success Manager for Teams We mentioned dotloop's many customization options. Fortunately, team leaders don't have to undertake this customization themselves. Each team is assigned a dotloop account manager, or "Success Manager." During a 30-minute orientation call, the team leader will share their roster, team email addresses, the roles of team members, a high-res logo, and any custom forms with their Success Manager. Your Success Manager will take all of that information and customize your dashboard, including branding, template creation and more. Once created and customized, your team is ready to start using dotloop and selling more homes! To learn more about how dotloop can work for your team, visit dotloop.com/teams.
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How to Add Infographics to Your Real Estate Marketing Strategy
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Twitter and Facebook Newsletters, Google Core Update: Everything Real Estate Agents Need to Know
The year 2021 is rich on updates. Many new features and updates rolled out this year, including Twitter and Facebook newsletters and a Google core update. Twitter Newsletter for Real Estate Agents Creating a Twitter Newsletter is possible with the Revue platform. This Netherlands-based company was acquired by Twitter in 2021. If you're interested in email marketing, this is the news you definitely need to check out. With the Revue platform you can: Compose and schedule newsletters – What is good with Revue scheduling is you can incorporate other social media links, like Facebook or Medium. This will help you get more visibility for other social media channels with just one newsletter. Create your own newsletter template – You can create your own design, choose the color scheme and the layout of your content. This feature is available in The Design tab under your Account settings. Email Lists – Aside from having the option to grow your email list with just native Twitter subscribers, you also have an option to import any email list you have acquired over these years. You own the rights to this list despite it being uploaded on the Revue platform. Analytics – Twitter Newsletter also gives you an opportunity to evaluate how your newsletters perform, by providing you with the insights data. You'll be able to check average open and click-through rates, unique opens, subscriber growth, as well as engagement and much more. How to Access Twitter Newsletter Function? To access this function you just need to do a few things. Sign up for a Revue account. You can sign up with both your Twitter and email account. Give Revue permission to access your Twitter. The next step requires you to create a profile URL to add the title of your newsletter, and to choose your country of residence. Twitter will provide you with the steps you need to follow. Note that for now Twitter newsletter is visible only through a mobile browser and not with the mobile app version. Paid and Free Newsletters Twitter Newsletter has a free and paid newsletter option. If you decide to have a free newsletter, Twitter won't take any cut from you. In case of the paid newsletters, Twitter will take a 5% cut from the money generated through Twitter paid newsletters. Facebook Newsletter for Real Estate Professionals Email marketing is on a roll this year. Yet another platform, Facebook, added a newsletter function. Bulletin is what the new newsletter is called, and it was created for people to find their audience, maximize their reach and monetize the content. What is cool about the new service is that Facebook doesn't get a cut from the money you accumulate through Facebook newsletter. So, if you're a real estate coach, or just a real estate agent trying to find an appropriate platform for your content, Facebook Bulletin is worth checking out. Aside from having an option for posting blog content, there is also an option for podcasts. Visitors don't have to log into Facebook to access this content. For now, Bulletin isn't launched worldwide and the number of content creators who can apply to Facebook Bulletin is limited. To learn more about Facebook Bulletin, check out their official website. Google Core Update As an owner of an IDX real estate website, the Google core update is directly impacting you as well. Recently, you might have noticed a spike or downfall in traffic. This might be caused by the new Google core update that is rolling out these past few months. What does the Google core update target? First and foremost, spam websites – Google is becoming more and more focused on a safe and secure experience for users. Websites that can't provide that are going to see a huge downfall in traffic. IDX website speed and load time – A positive experience is what matters now, and no positive online experience can be achieved without a good page loading time. Check out our article on page load time, and learn more about what you can do to improve it. To view the original article, visit the Realtyna blog.
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Best Closing Gifts Under $100
It's no secret that referrals are the bread and butter of our business. In fact, according to the National Association of Realtors, more than 42% of new clients came to agents by referrals, including renters and buyers. Giving your clients a small token of appreciation at closing is a thoughtful and effective way to complete your transaction on a high note while teeing up a referral ask. Closing gifts are a meaningful gesture that go a long way in maintaining a long-lasting client relationship and generating referrals. Closing gifts don't need to break the bank to be valued and appreciated. Whether you are looking for a gift card, treat basket, or anything else to give your clients as a housewarming gift, we got you covered. Here are a few affordable options that are big hits with clients. Personalized Cheese Board or Throw Blanket Cheese boards and throw blankets are long-lasting, memorable gifts that, especially if personalized, show that there was a great deal of thought put into the purchase. Options: Personalized Cheese Board with Name Watercolor House A custom watercolor house portrait is a digital painting that can be the perfect housewarming gift for a new homeowner. It's simple to order and will leave a lasting memory for your client. Options: Watercolor House Paintings A Welcome Plant or Tree If your client has a knack for nature, a potted plant or fruit tree could be the perfect gift. Placed in pots for indoor use, or planted outdoors, these inexpensive gifts are a living reminder of the service you provide. Options: Small Plants Small Trees Pet Gift Basket and Treat Subscription Box Gifts for a furry family member are always appreciated by pet lovers. Small gift baskets with toys and treats show pet owners you care by helping them pamper their fur babies! Options: Pet Lover Gifts Here are some tips when choosing the best gift for your client: Avoid cookie-cutter gifts or perishables like fruit baskets. Instead, find lasting, usable objects or art with a hint of personalization. Monogramming and engraving are easy to order and relatively inexpensive and can elevate even the most simple gift. Assume every client will close, keeping a mind's eye to identifying a meaningful closing gift. Ask questions about their hobbies and after-work activities. Pro tip: Don't spend money adding your brand to closing gifts. Most people do not want brand-based products in their brand new homes and will often throw them away. Make it about your client, not you. To view the original article, visit the Rental Beast blog.
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How to Build Your Online Branding
Compared to all the other real estate professionals in America, what makes you special? Phrased that way, this might feel like an intimidating question. But rest assured, there is an answer. The way you respond shapes your business in profound ways. Here are examples of ideas other real estate experts like you have had: "I'm special because nobody else knows the borough of Brooklyn like I do." "I'm special because I truly understand what goes into senior downsizing." "I'm special because I bring years of negotiating experience to my clients." The question is, how can you communicate your advantages so your leads will know and remember them? The solution is found in online branding. Online branding is crucial because the majority of your future clients will find you online first. They might read about you on your website weeks or months before they actually expect to reach out to a real estate agent. The first impression you make helps determine whether you're the one they eventually choose. Exactly What Is a Brand, Anyway? To clear up confusion, it helps to understand what branding is not: Branding isn't just about your values, even though your values are part of your brand Branding isn't just about your visual identity, such as your logo, color scheme, or fonts Branding isn't just what you say about yourself, but also what others say about you You can think of branding as a structured and intentional approach to communicating what you want others to know and remember about your business. Branding isn't just visual; it's everything you put out into the world, including how you interact with people professionally. Likewise, things other people say about you — such as reviews on third-party sites like Yelp — become part of your brand when someone learns about you by reading them. But if you've taken time to think deeply about your brand, you'll be able to positively influence even the factors you don't directly control. What Do You Want Your Brand to Represent? There are several questions you can ask yourself to get to the heart of your brand: Who Is Your Ideal Customer? After a little time getting used to the industry, this is the most crucial question any real estate pro can ask. All branding is directed "to" someone, and you'll need to know that person's characteristics. Marketing to first-time Millennial homebuyers is very different from marketing to Baby Boomers. Who do you want to serve, and what are their pain points? What demographics do they fall into? How do they research real estate issues? What Is Your Mission? You might think of your mission as your promised experience, what you want to deliver for everyone who picks you over the competition. For the agent focusing on those Millennials, it might be something like: "Make the home buying process easy and stress-free for people aged 30-40 searching for their first home." Whatever you choose as your mission, it's most effective when you can express it in a single succinct statement. What Can You Provide That Others Don't? Scroll back to the beginning of this article and take another look at the three answers people gave when they were asked what makes them special. Each statement provides insight into what they have to offer that most other real estate pros won't. Since everyone brings their own unique perspective to real estate, each person has their own grab-bag of specialized skills that can differentiate them from their colleagues. Three Ways to Express Your Unique Brand Online Once you have clarity on your brand, here's how to bring it to life online: Blog Regularly in Your Areas of Expertise Every blog post serves as a preview, a tantalizing taste of the value you can offer when someone chooses you as their agent. By publishing regularly, you strengthen your credentials as a local expert. In the process, you can also raise your visibility in online searches on topics relevant to your business. Embrace Branded Real Estate Video Video truly is the next best thing to being there. It's not just for listings, either: it's the ideal way to introduce yourself to new website visitors. The more video content you produce, the more chances people have to feel like they know and trust you. Some agents augment practically all of their blogs with video. Amplify Your Voice on Social Media Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn all provide amazing opportunities to further your brand. Take the time to lavish attention on every element of your profiles, from header images to headlines. Then, share new content as it comes out. That should encompass blogs, videos, new listings, and any news that matters to you. With best-in-class marketing automation, Delta Media Group helps you showcase your brand with confidence. 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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Make Professional Virtual Tours with iPhone
Learn how to quickly and affordably create high-quality virtual tours with incredible visuals for real estate sales and property management using your iPhone. The VTC 360 set turns your iPhone into a 360° camera for real estate virtual tours, but you must be a Virtual Tours Creator account holder to be able to use the VTC 360 set. If you don't have one, sign up for free here. What Is Virtual Tours Creator Software? VTC is a 360° virtual tour software for real estate agents and property managers. It allows you to create and publish virtual reality tours within 15 minutes on mobile for as little as $5 per property. It includes interactive floorplans, info points, URL links, and a FREE VR tour. On top of that, its 360° photography training is completely FREE with any subscription, and it also offers free custom branding! Agents who use virtual tours get more qualified buyers before the buyers even come to the open house. Every buyer is able to make informed decisions on buying a home from the comfort of their own home where and when they want. You have an open house 24/7 available to anyone and anywhere. VR tour made using iPhone XR What is the VTC 360 set? The VTC 360 set is made of: A device to spin your phone while taking a perfect 360° top-to-bottom HDR panorama. Best quality 190º fisheye lens. The VTC fisheye lens has a special field of view and sharpness. Just clip the lens and make a full turn. A few images will be taken and stitched on your phone, no internet connection needed. The results are mind blowing. Free Virtual Tours Creator app that instantly produces 360º images and uploads them to your online account. The VTC 360 set will not work without the app. If you break the lens, you only need to buy a new lens, not the whole camera. If you upgrade your phone, you automatically upgrade your 360º capture system. Better than an all-in-one 360º camera at a fraction of its price. Delivers 8K 360° panoramas Designed for real estate photography Compatible with any standard tripod Compatible with all iPhone models: 8, 8 Plus, XS, XS Max, XR, 11, 11 Pro, 11 Pro Max, iPhone X Free Virtual Tours Creator app that instantly produces 360º images Built-in HDR High Dynamic Range for great indoor capture What are the advantages of the VTC 360 set or lens 360° panorama? AEB: optimal exposure and brightness 8k quality 360° panorama Automatic 360° panorama stitching Perfectly assembled 360° panorama (no parallax issues) VR: panorama compatible with all types of 360° camera and virtual reality headsets for immersive tours What is the Virtual Tours Creator App? The first Virtual Tours Creator App will be released on the App Store for iPhones ONLY. Take perfect 360°, 8K, HDR panoramas. It is designed to revolutionize the price and speed of creating VR tours in sales and property management. No more struggle with transferring photos from the 360° camera to your phone and then to the cloud. When using the Virtual Tours Creator app, your photos are automatically uploaded to your VTC account in the cloud. You must have a VTC account to create your virtual tours. You can save time on uploading photos in the office. It all happens on the go while you are taking the property photos. You can reorganize your photos and create the final version of your virtual tour by adding hotspots and info points later when you finish shooting the houss in your VTC web account. Quality Comparison Tour made using iPhone XR VS.Tour made using Insta360 ONER Still Photos in Comparison Photos in order: VTC 360 set Insta360 OneR Zoom in Comparison Photos in order: VTC 360 set Insta360 OneR To view the original article, visit the Virtual Tours Creator blog.
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Best Images to Use for Your Real Estate Listings
One of the best things to do before you start marketing your property is ensuring you have great images. This can be really tough for homeowners and agents who are already overwhelmed with everything else that needs to happen when selling a home. With these simple tips, you can ensure your photos help generate interest and don't scare people away. Declutter Before the First Photo Is Taken Removing belongings is key to good photos. Removing furniture, simplifying the room and organizing what is left will help potential buyers better understand how they will use the space. Understand the Photos You Need All houses are different, but what a buyer wants to see is pretty consistent. Ensure you have a list of all the photos you want before you start. Examples include wide angle shots of the bedrooms, curb appeal shot, a few of the back yard, one of each bathroom, etc. Stage the Home for the Perfect Picture With staged homes typically getting 1-5% higher offers from buyers, it is important to stage certain areas of the home. In the case of your photos, stage certain areas for the perfect shot. A great example would be fresh fruit in the kitchen or a perfectly set outdoor table before a BBQ. Try Some New Tricks of the Trade Most professional photographers will have a tripod, a wide-angle lens and will be shooting from different angles giving it a more artistic feel. You should be trying that too! Ask for Advice and Feedback Much like anything else you are learning, you should be open to someone looking at work and giving you advice and asking for feedback. It is typically hard to put your work in front of another professional and ask for their honest feedback, but the payoff is worth it as it will only help you get better! For more information, or to book a free marketing review with Amarki, feel free to book a time HERE. Or give Amarki a try and 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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