On the 405th episode of Mail-Right Show, Robert Newnan and Jonathan Denwood shared practical branding tips for realtors to stand out in the competitive world of real estate. The episode deep dives into building a brand, from finding a value proposition and niche to creating a brand strategy. Robert Newman is the CEO of Inbound REM, an inbound marketing firm, and has worked in the real estate SEO business for over a decade. On the other hand, Jonathan Denwood is the joint founder and CEO of Mail-Right, a platform that builds WordPress websites and offers CRM and digital marketing platforms.
Establishing a brand is very similar to establishing a business because you first think of the business you want to pursue and then figure out how to make that idea a reality by creating a brand. Finding out what exactly you are looking for will not happen overnight, and it might take years to figure out precisely the client that you really like doing business with inside the real estate world. Whether you are planning or currently building your brand, here are branding tips for realtors to stand out in a crowded market.
Find Your Individual Value Proposition
In real estate, regardless of your marketing or how you generate leads, sending emails is one of the most constructive things. But one thing that matters across all mediums is going to be the unique value proposition that you bring to a relationship with the prospect.
Many people often say that being able to communicate your value proposition in a short amount of time — often referred to as an elevator pitch— you have to capture somebody’s attention within 30 seconds.
When talking about value propositions, try to avoid focusing on money. Some agents try to persuade people by offering the same value for half the price, but it doesn’t make sense. They have to work hard to justify this offer because people will wonder why they’re willing to give up half of their revenue. This is the initial challenge they face when offering a discount. If someone wants to talk about a discount, let the client bring it up to you, which is what most of the best luxury agents do— letting the client start the negotiation. When dealing with someone who’s determined, yet you don’t want to negotiate, you can present a compelling offer. Everyone thinks that we should say yes to everything that a customer is asking because that’s what realtors are trained on. However, when you find a boundary the customer is pushing, stand your ground that you don’t discount. The short answer is always the best and adheres to the value the most. If you’re really solid on the fact that you’re not going to discount, don’t discount.
In addition, figure out what your unique selling point (USP) is and mix it into your brand. For service salespeople in the real estate field, the most valuable task is determining what sets them apart from the competition. Your unique selling point (USP) is the foundation for everything you do, from marketing strategies to crafting your tagline. It’s worth the effort because, whether the market is saturated or not, having a unique selling proposition will help you individualize yourself.
Dominating the Niche
Finding your niche is linked to getting yourself established. The sooner you find a niche, the more the marketing will be easier and more effective. There are many niches to explore, as almost every area, you can find a niche. However, realtors typically focus on the larger, more general markets.
When someone wants to become a successful real estate salesperson, they often find a specific group of clients they enjoy serving. For instance, real estate agents who specialize in luxury properties might choose to cater to extremely wealthy clients exclusively. Some of these luxury agents even have connections with friends who have similar interests, such as the music industry, which helps them locate more high-end clients they prefer working with.
You can also utilize your digital presence to have a niche that’s a bit broader than your GEO area if you wish to. For instance, if you live in Los Angeles, you can focus on reaching local customers using Google while also specializing in a specific area that covers the entire Los Angeles region. It’s like having two aspects to your online presence – one for locals and another for a niche group across Los Angeles.
Once you find a niche, create your website and concentrate on the niche you want to foster. While it’s okay to handle general transactions through a brokerage, the main emphasis should be on growing your niche using a personalized website to reflect your unique brand. When you create a website that focuses on your niche, it involves building up your niche through content and social media to some degree.
Write Out a Basic Brand Strategy
A basic brand strategy doesn’t have to be a very long document. It can be in the form of bullet points and short paragraphs. The important thing is having the key things that individualize yourself in the market: what is your niche or the basics? What sets you apart is when you are more in control of the information you put into the marketplace.
When writing out a basic brand strategy, think about who is your targeted client. What do they do? What do they care about? What are they into? All of these questions are going to help you design your personal brand. If you don’t know the answer to those questions, a helpful trick is to ask yourself, where do you plan to conduct business? Every real estate agent should be able to answer this question.
After selecting a location, the next step is to consider whether there is a common customer profile. For example, in Florida, many communities will be retirees and snowbirds, so it is a significant percentage of persona no matter where you go. Occasionally, you’ll have additional persona elements such as Jews, Cubanos, and more, depending on what part of Florida you’re in. Then, find out if these factors matter to you. Do they connect with you? If it does, tie them into your brand because you have a built-in marketplace for prospects.
If you’re an Englishman who’s a bit cranky and is skilled in WordPress, then someone seeks your advice; they’re likely to receive a frank opinion, perhaps too honest for their comfort. Then that’s your unique brand. You might even consider using it as your tagline, like “an opinion that’s too honest, even for your own comfort.”
Have all your social media and online materials aimed at your niche target. It is easier to make sure the content you’re producing matches up to your niche and your proposition.
Regardless of your decision for your brand, it is worth it to spend 2-4 more times to identify who you are thoroughly. If you get a brand and people start to pay attention to you, you’ll get addicted to the business or the success.
Changing your brand after gaining followers can be disruptive, so you must be sure of your identity before making any moves, like creating videos or sending out mass mailings. This deep understanding of yourself will create a distinct flavor when you reach out to them. More than that, high service and professionalism are essential, and branding flourishes on top of that.