Sun Tzu, the author of “The Art of War,” observes that, “in the midst of chaos, there is also opportunity.” Are you ready to capitalize on the opportunity to gain market share now?
I recently interviewed Pat Heller, the vice president of Compass in Southern California. When I asked Heller about how her agents were faring, she answered that most are in what she calls “go time.” She then shared how “go time” is the fourth stage of what we all experienced due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Stage 1: Shock
In the beginning, when we were first ordered to shelter in place, there was a surreal disconnect. On the one hand, that period provided a time for forced reflection. On the other, because the pandemic was happening everywhere simultaneously, we become more connected to the world.
Stage 2: Transition to the new reality
We were forced to ask, “What will I do about this? Am I going to take charge or be a victim?” Heller observed that the way her agents handled the transition was the way they approached and went through life. Those with fixed mindsets were often caught up in the drama. Others figured out how to make the best of the situation and move forward.
Stage 3: Hanging in there
Agents who were willing to learn and accept that the videos they shot or whatever new approach they tried wouldn’t be perfect were thriving. Others who were unwilling to hang in there were miserable.
Stage 4: Go time
We can see the light at the end of the tunnel and are energized about getting back to work under more normal conditions.
As Heller’s agents prepare for “go time,” she has asked them the following question: What are the silver linings — and the lessons learned — that you’ll continue to use in your business as you move forward?
She has urged them to expand on what has worked during the pandemic and to eliminate what’s no longer effective.
8 strategies to seize more market share during ‘go time’
As stay-at-home orders are slowly being lifted, what action steps will you take to increase your market share? Review the steps below. Identify which ones will work best for you and your market, and then start implementing them now.
1. Contact sellers who have been waiting to sell
If you have sellers waiting in the wings, complete all required listing documentation now. This will give your sellers an edge when the market does improve. It also prevents another agent from taking that listing.
2. Generate qualified leads through LinkedIn
Is there someone in your LinkedIn database who would benefit from being introduced to five of your other LinkedIn contacts? In exchange, ask them to introduce you to five of their LinkedIn contacts who may be considering buying or selling a home.
If possible, treat them to their favorite beverage in person or have a virtual drink on Zoom or Facebook Live where you exchange contacts. Five new personal introductions — no door knocking or cold calling required.
3. Generate leads using video testimonials
Any time you take a new listing, ask your sellers if they would be willing to do a video testimonial about what they enjoy most about living in their area. Now here’s the twist. Ask if they know anyone else who would be willing to give you a video testimonial about how great it is to live in their area.
Meet with the referral on Zoom, record the meeting, and be sure to send the video to both the seller who referred you as well as the person who did the testimonial. Chances are they will share the videos with their friends. To say thank you, give each of them a gift card as well.
This is an especially powerful approach due to how highly Google ranks video testimonials. Furthermore, Google treats these area testimonials the same way it would treat a personal testimonial for you.
4. Convert as many incoming leads as possible
Now that shelter-in-place orders are relaxed, you can’t afford to miss converting a single lead. Since it’s impossible to be available 24/7, a lead conversion chatbot is a great alternative. For a detailed discussion about various chatbots, visit Realty Ninja. My personal pick — based on its low price ($9.99 per month) and functionality — is IMRE.ca.
5. Stand out with updated listing photos and videos
For properties listed during the winter, replace your winter photos with spring photos. If possible, take new interior photos as well. If you’re unable to take new interior photos, use Box Brownie or other virtual staging apps to make your current photos as attractive as possible. If the landscaping needs attention, use the iScape app to virtually landscape the property.
6. Help sellers achieve the maximum exposure that results in the maximum price
To make sure your listings are seen by as many people as possible, here’s what to do:
- Use the headline analyzer to write headlines that will capture the buyer’s attention.
- Make sure your print and online advertising focuses on lifestyle (the emotional benefits, not the typical list of features most agents use like, great view, granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, etc.)
- Create a Facebook business page that includes as much information as possible about your local area. Highlight local businesses, fun activities, great places to shop, recreational areas, etc.
- Create a second Facebook business page that uses the property address (123 Elm Street-your town-your state.com). Post multiple pictures and videos on this site, and invite the seller to share it with others they know.
- Post the property for sale, including your regular or virtual open houses, on Facebook Marketplace and Oodle.com.
- Use Real-Buzz.com and Immobel.com to market your listings in 18 different languages.
- Post any interesting features or back stories about the property on Instagram Stories.
- Be sure to post any property videos on your personal YouTube channel and tag them with the price, location (street, city, state and ZIP code), plus other information about the property’s amenities.
7. Give back to your community
As part of “go time,” Greg McDaniel has been shooting videos with local restaurants and other business owners to help them gear up their businesses once they’re allowed to open up again. He is also planning an outdoor client appreciation event that will raise funds for a local school.
8. Strive for ‘Gosh, that was amazing’
Peter Knight, the founder of the Property Academy in the U.K. says: If you really want your marketing to succeed, you must be so different and unique that people say, “Gosh — that’s amazing!”
To do this, focus on how a home provides the frame for important life events such as their child’s first steps, the garden they built over the years or holidays spent with family. Market for the “gosh,” and watch your business soar.
While other agents are still trying to figure out what to do, now is the best time ever to go all out and seize market share from your competitors. Take advantage of it!
Bernice Ross, President and CEO of BrokerageUP and RealEstateCoach.com, is a national speaker, author and trainer with over 1,000 published articles. Learn about her broker/manager training programs designed for women, by women, at BrokerageUp.com and her new agent sales training at RealEstateCoach.com/newagent.
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