Sometimes the best advice comes from the most unexpected sources — like your favorite TV shows. AMC’s hit series “Mad Men,” which is set in the advertising world of the swinging ’60s, has some of the most memorable quotes you’ll ever hear, and they’re surprisingly relevant to marketing today.

  • If you want to transform your business, you need to first transform your marketing.
  • Position yourself as an expert by offering something free -- a free home valuation, a free local real estate market report or even a free property history report.
  • Sharing the property’s history is a great way to build trust. Transparency builds trust.

Sometimes the best advice comes from the most unexpected sources — like your favorite TV shows. AMC’s hit series “Mad Men,” which is set in the advertising world of the swinging ’60s, has some of the most memorable quotes you’ll ever hear, and they’re surprisingly relevant to marketing today.

Although it’s been a little over a year since the final episode aired, “Mad Men” has left a lasting impression not only on the women who swoon for Don Draper (brilliantly played by Jon Hamm) but also on sales and marketing professionals alike. After all, Draper, a superstar creative director, seems to have the secret sauce of business running through his veins.

On a personal note, I just recently binge watched “Mad Men” and often find myself in the middle of a work day asking “What would Don Draper do?” And though I wouldn’t take relationship advice from Draper, (the guy’s a train wreck in the love department) the fictional Ad man and honorary marketing god, has plenty to say, and when he talks, we all listen.

Here are four brilliant “Mad Men” quotes and how they translate to today’s world of real estate sales and marketing. Even if you’ve never seen the show, you’ll still enjoy the wit and wisdom that is “Mad Men.”

“Success comes from standing out, not fitting in.” – Don Draper

This is the quote that inspired me to write this article. When I first heard it, I immediately hit “pause” and scribbled it on the back of a pre-approved credit card offer — true story.

Look around at the people you admire most, regardless of industry. They are winning business by standing out and building a personal brand.

In the competitive world of real estate one thing’s certain: you can’t expect to stand out by using the same marketing strategy everyone else does. If you want to transform your business, you need to first transform your marketing.

Target clients more precisely

Many people think that the more types of clients you appeal to, the better. In fact, the opposite is true.

Be precise about the ideal clients you want to you serve. For example, you might market yourself to families with young children or as a luxury properties agent. Your marketing message, channels and materials should reflect your niche. When you are clear about whom your services really help, you’ll attract more clients.

Position yourself as an expert

Your experience and that of your competitors might be the same. So how do you stand out? Demonstrate your expertise, and give them a reason to choose you.

One way of achieving this is to host first-time homebuying workshops or training events with a local mortgage company. Although hosting these events in person is always valuable, consider hosting them online as a more cost-effective vehicle with broader reach.

Another example is to provide something free — a free home valuation, a free local real estate market report or even a free property history report.

Build strong relationships with leads

“Out of sight, out of mind.” Once you’re out the door, off the phone or a lead has clicked to another listing, they’re going to forget you.

How can you make sure you have a stronger relationship with your leads than your competitors do?

Stay in contact once a week or once a month. Your newsletters or blogs should be creative, useful and informative, full of market information and articles from property experts.

Remember that you want to be recognized for your sales expertise and viewed as the local expert, so don’t annoy them with irrelevant news or articles.

Leads are more likely to work with a person they feel they know, and frequent helpful communication breeds familiarity.

Don Draper Giphy

“The day you sign a client is the day you start losing one.” –Don Draper

This quote couldn’t be truer. There is a “honeymoon” phase with most new clients, but it takes work to keep the relationship alive. As soon as you are fortunate enough to earn a client, begin building and executing your strategy for keeping that client happy.

The more value you offer, the more a client will be loyal to you, trust you, and refer their family and friends to you. According to NAR’s 2015 Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends report, over 45 percent of millennials seeking a real estate agent ask friends and family members for recommendations.

Working hard for buyers goes beyond helping them find the right home, though that’s a great start! In the same report, the top three skills and qualities buyers seek in an agent are responsiveness, knowledge of the purchase process and knowledge of the real estate market.

But perhaps the real opportunity to demonstrate your value can be seen during the offer process. When asked to rank their agents’ skills and qualities, buyers ranked satisfaction with an agent’s negotiation skills last.

Surprisingly, negotiating skills, which are critical to success, are often minimized or overlooked completely in training and coaching programs for real estate professionals. Here are four winning negotiating tactics to help you close a deal.

Work hard to satisfy your client’s needs, and you’ll have a client for life.

“You, feeling something, that’s what sells.” – Don Draper

Take it from the man himself, connecting on a deep emotional level with your clients creates a lasting relationship.

Why are they selling their childhood home? Why are they relocating to the West Coast? What are their ultimate goals? If you understand where they’re coming from and what their concerns are, you can leverage your experience to become a trusted resource, adviser and friend.

Treat each client as an individual, and take note of their interests and their concerns. Take the time to jot down notes from meetings and phone calls. Set up a system to track important dates such as birthdays, anniversaries and closing date.

Even after a real estate transaction has been completed, it’s a nice touch to schedule a follow-up meeting (perhaps lunch or a coffee) to just check in and see how they are doing. You’ll become their preferred real estate agent, and they will be a valued source of new and repeat business for many years to come.

“Just tell the truth. Don’t worry about the outcome. People respect that.” – Peggy Olson

Peggy Olson

We’ve spent a lot of time focusing on Don Draper’s most brilliant lines, but let’s not forget his protégé, secretary-turned-copywriter, Peggy Olson. And this quote is perhaps the most relevant for real estate professionals.
Your client relationships will be short-lived if you’re dishonest with the information you pass on (or withhold). Thanks to the digital age clients are more informed, savvy and smart.

They have access to information at their fingertips. If you don’t share something, chances are they’ll discover it online or from a chatty neighbor.

For real estate agents, sharing the property’s history — is a great way to build trust. Transparency builds trust!

“Mad Men” fans, what other quotes and marketing wisdom still ring true? If you don’t like what I’m saying, “change the conversation” in the comments below.

Jill Weittenhiller is a marketing manager at Housefax in Washington, D.C. Follow Housefax on Facebook or Twitter.

Email Jill Weittenhiller.

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