To offer your clients the most valuable service, you have to learn everything your prospects might want to know about your new market. If you find yourself starting over, here are some tips to make it a little bit easier.

Whether you’re a rookie agent, a rising team leader or an established veteran broker, we can all benefit from sharpening our skills. Follow our “Back to Basics” series to learn fundamental strategies, tactics, philosophies and more from real estate pros across the industry.

As real estate agents, we are in the business of helping people move. Sometimes, whether due to a force of circumstance or choice, we find that we have to move too. When this happens it’s crucial that we learn about our new market, nurture our sphere of influence and rebuild our brand credibility.

An excellent real estate agent should be an authority on the area that they live, work and play. Clients often rely on our advice on everything from the best city to commute from to the best local restaurants. To add to this, every market is different, and it’s important to treat them accordingly.

As an agent, it’s crucial that we learn everything that a potential client would want to know. This is imperative if you wish to offer a valuable service to your clients and continue to be successful in your career as an agent.

Although it might seem like a daunting task, “starting over” can give your real estate business a new lease of life. If you find yourself starting again in your real estate career, here are some tips to make it a little bit easier.

1. Get to know the area

Sounds obvious right? When you start working in a new area, you need to go back to basics. This means driving around the area and familiarizing yourself with it.

Look for homes that are listed and search for them on your local MLS. It’s vital that you have at least a basic knowledge of the local real estate market. What are the basic factors, influences and principles that shape the local economy?

2. Decide where you want to focus your business

We’ve all heard about the importance of having a “farm area.” Moving to a new area probably necessitates the need to also find a new geographic farm area.

Many agents decide to use their own neighborhood or community as their chosen farm area, but this isn’t a hard and fast rule. If you happen to find an area that you have an affinity with or with a style of home that you are particularly knowledgeable about, this could be a good choice for your farm area.

Deciding where you will focus your energy and marketing is an essential first step of moving your business to a new area.

3. Utilize social media

Social media such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, can be a goldmine of information for real estate agents. It’s essential that you build up a strong foundation of contacts, such as mortgage lenders, title companies and real estate attorneys.

Following fellow agents can also be rewarding when you’re new to the area. For instance, what type of properties are they posting on their page? What kind of engagement are they receiving from potential clients?

If you come across an agent who appears to be doing particularly well in their niche, try to find out why and how.

4. Create a marketing plan

If you don’t already have one, moving to a new area is the perfect opportunity to create a marketing plan. Your marketing plan should include your goals, your budget and the demographics of your target clientele.

It’s also important to look at how your competition is marketing in your new area. This can give you an indication of where to channel your efforts.

Whether you’re moving for a fresh start or moving out of necessity, it’s possible to hit the ground running — as long as you have a plan.

Get ahead of the game by learning about your new area and being strategic about how you market yourself. The best piece of advice a real estate agent can utilize is to work smarter, not harder.

Jackson Cooper is a writer and real estate enthusiast at Jensen and Company. Follow Jensen & Company on Twitter or Facebook.

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