Real estate is a field that is defined by you as the agent, but more specifically, by the way you conduct your business. It's about individuality and making yourself both relevant and an important resource to your client base and the community as a whole.
With so many agents out there vying for a piece of the prospect pie, it's easy to get overlooked by potential clients. In order to overcome this obstacle, you need to find a way to market yourself effectively. If your plan entails sending out mass mailers, or doing magazine ads, think again; the days of effective outbound marketing are fading fast.
Today, you need to turn your focus to inbound marketing and create an online presence with your website, social media marketing and blogging so you can naturally attract your target market.
1. Become A True Client Resource
The first step is to create your website, where your current, and prospective, clients can go to learn more about you and the services you offer. However, most agents make the mistake of doing only that and no more; in today's competitive marketplace, you need to go beyond displaying your services. You need to use your website, blog and social media to become a valuable resource.
Your real estate website needs to embrace the technology available today and create a truly value-based experience for your visitors. They have to come away feeling that you are a true partner that can be counted on for the information they need to make the best decision. Adding online mortgage calculators, information about loan programs and access to all MLS listings (not only yours) will allow your website to become a valuable tool.
2. Solidify Your Personal Brand
You may argue that you do not need the added expense of a website since your broker or agency supplies you with one as part of employment, but nothing could be further from the truth. What happens if you leave that brokerage to branch out?
Personal branding in real estate is important. You need to set yourself apart from the competition. You don't want to be lumped in with everyone else in the office on some generic website, otherwise what's the benefit of the prospect choosing you over another agent in your office?
When you create your own website, you begin to brand yourself online. Your website is a direct reflection of you, your goals, and your services. No matter where you go, your name is your brand, and your clients will be able to find you.
Your real estate web design should include highlights of everything you personally bring to the table, in addition to other bits of information and services that directly tie in to your field of expertise. If you make your website a one-stop shop, why would your clients need to go anywhere else?
3. Become the Local "Go To" Agent
Having your own website also gives you an awesome advantage when it comes to targeting specific geographic areas. If there is a certain area of town that you are trying to focus on, you can easily integrate targeted keywords that represent that area of town into your website elements (url structure, page titles, content, etc.).
By integrating these specific keywords into your website, you are giving yourself a destinct advanage over your competiton who is probably focusing on broader keyword targets. When a potential client begins to look at real estate in your target area of town, their is a greater chance that they will discover you. What's even better is that your site will have information specifically about that area, so you will look like the "go to" agent.
In today's real estate world, it's all about becoming a resource for your clients, solidifying your personal brand, and staying relevant to your area of focus. Creating your own real estate site is the best way to secure all of these areas and maximize your potential to grow your business.