How do you create value that resonates with clients and consumers in an industry that is constantly flooded with information, hype and, sometimes, bad press?
Creating value and marketing around that value is a constant battle. In a job that interacts with the public, it can be difficult and nearly impossible to find a system that will fit the needs of every client you want to reach.
What I have found to be useful for securing value with clients and consumers is the following:
People find value in raw, honest information. Consumers are not stupid, and they know when they are being sold. Our profession has been bogged down with a negative stereotype because of a few bad apples.
It is our job to be the eyes and ears of our local real estate market. In my opinion, and my business, I feel it is my job to educate and consult with people.
I might sell a house, but I don’t push people into the choices they make. We are expected to be experts in our field so we can consult our clients. You cannot educate the public if you don’t educate yourself — take classes, engage with other agents in your office or at your local board, or even just read about your local real estate market.
Don’t overcomplicate the process. Sending out postcards, farming an area or sending out items to your sphere of influence is valuable. But sending out melodramatic information with flashy phrases causes your information to get lost.
People might think you have nothing to offer if you plaster your face on two-thirds of the postcard. Simplify the process and information. Get to the point.
Be who you are, not what you think a real estate agent should be. This struggle has been real for me. I felt like I needed to be what people perceived as a successful real estate agent — I needed to do what everyone else was doing to be successful.
Sure, it worked for those people because it fit their personality. But it didn’t work for me. I have found that my biggest successes have come when I have just accepted who I am as a person and the type of agent I am. You won’t be a fit for everyone, and that’s OK. There is enough business for everyone.
Be that person they trust. What can you offer your clients that they cannot get from someone else or the Internet?
I have clients who call me before they do work to their house to ask what I think about everything, including paint colors, installing solar panels and even refinance materials they received in the mail.
Why do they call me? Because at some point during our transaction, they felt a sense of trust — because I was looking out for their interests, and isn’t that the goal? To make sure our customers know that we are here for them and they need us.
Kellie Tinnin is a real estate agent in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Follow Kellie on Twitter @KellieTinnin.