Ready to hook a few new recruits that will take your team to the next level? Expert Diana Zaya offers these tips to craft the perfect email template campaign that will showcase your brokerage’s best features

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Agent recruitment is a hot topic and one that will certainly take center stage as we move into a more challenging real estate market. With mortgage rates rising, soaring inflation and home sales declining, many agents will feel the crunch and may begin to consider a brokerage change as a remedy for their lagging sales, or they may end up leaving the business altogether. 

So, what can brokerage leaders do to get ahead of the anticipated exiting volume? The answer is simple: prioritize agent recruitment. 

Most real estate leaders will acknowledge that agent recruitment should be a priority, however, most are still subscribing to outdated and ineffective recruiting methods. Developing a smart engagement campaign that targets the right agents for your brokerage is a vital step in increasing agent recruitment numbers.

Since a real estate brokerage’s revenue is highly correlated to the size and quality of its agent pool, it is necessary to take an intentional approach to agent recruitment and retention.

Within real estate, it is widely accepted that if you are not growing, you are shrinking. According to Relitix Data Solutions’ agent movement statistics, you can expect about 15 percent to 20 percent of a brokerage’s annual volume will exit each year.

A portion of that, about 10 percent to 12 percent, will be due to agents being recruited away to competitor brokerages. The other 5 percent to 10 percent will be due to agents either retiring out of the business or leaving the business for a variety of other reasons. 

A highly effective and often utilized strategy in agent recruitment is email marketing. Email marketing when done well is often preferred to other methods since it scales easily and can expand reach to a broader audience.

According to The Data and Marketing Association, email marketing also delivers the highest ROI of all other marketing channels at about $42 returned for every dollar spent.

Most business owners will agree that email marketing is a necessary component to a comprehensive outreach plan.

As Suneet Agarwal, CEO of Big Block Realty North says, “Our brokerage recruits a lot of agents by creating high-value content. Email marketing gives us a cost-effective way to get that content to the agents that we’d like to meet with.”

Additionally, email marketing still allows for the ability to hyper-target agents that are a good fit for the brokerage with customized messaging. 

Begin with an attention-grabbing intro 

Beginning an email with an attention-grabbing opener is the key to gaining a reader’s attention and enticing them to read on. Most people are inundated with numerous emails coming into their inboxes daily and will only scan the first few lines of an email to determine if they would like to read on.

According to the McKinsey study, the average person spends 28 percent of the workday reading and answering email. For most people, that amounts to 2.6 hours spent and about 120 messages received per day. Leading with an industry-wide common challenge is a great way to begin an email since it is likely to resonate with many people. 

Think about your audience and what is likely keeping them up at night. List out the items you come up with as these issues can serve as topics for future emails.

Once you have determined your opener, keep your messaging conversational and casual, while using language that triggers emotions within your readers. Evoking emotions within the audience will likely lead to higher response rates when it’s time for your call to action. 

Build rapport and establish credibility

 Think about what types of agents would be the best fit for your brokerage. Some brokerages may target newer agents since they are often easier to recruit and can be a better cultural fit.

Other brokerages may like the predictability of more experienced and consistent producers. Begin by creating agent personas of your ideal agents as a way of bringing focus and intention to your recruitment efforts. 

After defining your ideal agent types, the next step would be to segment your list by production stats and trends. Look to identify any issues that are prevalent and match them to the list of issues compiled earlier.

For example, if newer agents are the best fit for your brokerage, look for agents who joined the MLS two to three years ago and enjoyed some early success but have recently plateaued in their production. 

Reaching out with a message of how you can help them get over that hump and take their career to the next level would be a message that will resonate with this group.

Credibility comes when positioning yourself as someone who has done their homework and is invested in supporting their career goals.

 Go beyond just looking at production and year-over-year changes, to look for metrics such as co-broker percentage, first MLS transaction date, last transaction date, listing conversion rates, and so on. The more data available on the agent, the more effective and targeted the messaging will be. 

Highlight your value prop

Oftentimes, leaders are eager to spotlight the many great things that their firms do to support and develop their agents. Brokerages spend vast amounts of money on tech, training, support resources, events, and so on to attract the right agents.

When communicating with an agent, resist the temptation to tell them about everything being offered. Rather, focus on the few areas that your brokerage really excels and line up with the segmented agent population identified earlier.

Then correlate those items to that group. For example, if targeting newer agents, share the array of training targeted at newer agents to help elevate their career to the next level such as how to take a listing, how to sell listings, how to price listings and so on.

If targeting agents moving into higher price points, lead with how your brokerage supports high-end listings. Leading with messaging that resonates with the target audience will likely lead to higher conversion rates. 

Make the ‘ask’

The final and most vital step is the call to action. While the ultimate goal is to recruit agents to the brokerage, there are many micro-steps along the way.

Knowing what stages are involved in that journey from opening the initial email to joining the firm is helpful in planning out how your interactions should progress.

Consider if your “ask” is to invite them to an event or if it is to meet for coffee and conduct career planning with them. Whatever it may be, be clear in your motives and consistent in your messaging. 

Include a link to an appointment scheduler for a meeting, or for your next event. Additionally, linking to other materials or resources to further communicate your value proposition is a great way to encourage agents to respond to your email.

Try linking to any testimonials of others that have joined your firm and achieved greater success after coming onboard. If targeting experienced agents having a slump, consider linking to a stats sheet that demonstrates how agents perform better after joining your firm.

Any videos that highlight culture or case studies of success stories are a surefire way to get an agent’s attention. 

Other tips 

  • Subject lines should be attention-grabbing and not appear salesy
  • Make sure emails include bullet points and are scannable 
  • Include only one call to action 
  • Use language that is conversational and not overly formal 
  • Highlight any contacts you may have in common 
  • Keep messaging and linked materials consistent 
  • Try A/B testing to determine the best time of day to send the emails, most effective subject lines, etc. 
  • Create a sense of urgency by using the “fear of missing out” effect 

There are many tools and resources that can help. Taking the time to define the ‘best fit’ agents for your brokerage as well as developing the systems and processes to engage with them will take some time. However, it is sure to help you grow your brokerage.

Diana Zaya is the vice president of sales and marketing and one of the founding team members of Relitix, a data analytics company specializing in the use of data science applications such as machine learning, big data analytics, and data visualization for agent recruitment and retention. Connect with her on LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram.

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