There’s an adage in sales and digital marketing that goes something like this: Content is king. While this is still true in many industries—like real estate—the landscape has drastically changed.
Years ago, real estate agents used to advertise on shopping carts that sat outside of grocery stores. I can attest to this marketing strategy because that is how we found our agent and friend, Jane Herrick Corder. True story.
Since then, one significant thing has happened: the Internet.
And with that came a generational metamorphosis of pretty much everything. The Internet has changed the way we communicate, how we learn, the way we schedule appointments, and even how we shop. Amazon, anyone?
According to a recent survey, in 2000, only 22% of Americans had ever shopped online. Fast forward to today, and 80% do—at least somewhat regularly.
Nowadays, you can even buy a house online without ever stepping one foot in it—let alone ever meeting the agent who sells it to you.
The Internet has made quite an impact on our world, wouldn’t you say?
One obvious takeaway is this: with fewer people out in brick-and-mortars, such as grocery stores, there is less need for shopping carts with your favorite local real estate agent smiling at you. It’s time for Plan B.
Let’s face it. Things have changed, and they will continue to change. The question is, are you resisting it, or ready to embrace it?
A World of Opportunity
“20 years ago today, the World Wide Web opened to the public.”
This headline came from an article published in 2011—making it (the Internet) almost 30 years old. Mind-blowing, right?
And while it has been around, what feels like forever, the Internet continues to evolve and offers several ways for real estate agents to use it to build (and grow) their business. Here are three of them:
“Let’s go invent tomorrow instead of worrying about what happened yesterday.” —Steve Jobs
Mobile phones. Tablets. Laptops. Desktops.
It’s safe to say that there is no shortage of affordable technology that is readily available to use for—well—pretty much anything.
When it comes to running a real estate business, these devices can help agents attract leads, connect with potential buyers and sellers, and even facilitate an entire transaction. Yet they are often overlooked.
Maybe there’s a fear of the unknown, or the idea of learning new something new is daunting, but I have news for you: there is a younger generation of folks who understand the power of technology. Many of them are finding their way into the real estate industry and want to steal your business.
My advice? Focus on what you can do today and tomorrow, and leave behind yesterday and the antiquated methods that are holding you back.
2. Social Media
“You don’t need a corporation or a marketing company to brand you now: you can do it yourself. You can establish who you are with a social media following.” —Ray Allen
Ray Allen was a professional basketball player who spent 18 seasons in the NBA. His accolades fill out an extensive page on Wikipedia—the Hall of Fame, ten All-Star designations, an Olympic gold medal, and multiple NBA records. He is widely considered one of the best shooters of all-time.
What’s not listed is his 2.3 million followers on Instagram or his 4.6 million fans on Facebook. Ray Allen knows a thing or two about social media. Yes, he had plenty of exposure with his tenure in the NBA, but he’s also been retired for six years—and most of his activity on social media has occurred within that time.
Real estate agents don’t need to have a website chock-full of SEO-optimized content to build an audience. While there’s certainly an argument for having a website like that, an active presence on social media can be just as effective.
Whether you sell high-rise condos in the heart of the city or vacation homes in the high country of the Rocky Mountains, social media has the power to give you a uniqueness that no other agent can match. Consider that a competitive advantage.
“If you want to go fast, get some damned help. If you want to go far, find a community, and also get some damned help.” —Sonia Simone
I am a champion of community and was #BetterTogether when #BetterTogether wasn’t cool. (That’s a Barbara Mandrell reference, for the younger generation.)
There is something special that happens when people share something in common and unite. And in the workplace, it’s even more special.
Being a real estate agent is a journey filled with endless ups, downs, and in-betweens. Throw in a pandemic, and there might be days where you feel isolated and completely helpless.
Now, imagine a world where your co-workers help you rather than hurt you. Where they give you leads, rather than take them. Where they encourage you rather than discourage you. Sounds pretty amazing. Doesn’t it?
When a community is healthy and thriving, there is a remarkable thing that often happens: a rising tide lifts all boats. And one of those boats can be yours.
The Future of Real Estate
Mastering technology, social media, and community is the key to understanding the future of real estate: building a personal enterprise.
Next week, I’ll dig deeper and lay the foundation of what it means to take matters into your own hands and control your destination—the smart way.
In the meantime, I encourage you to read The Rise of the Personal Enterprise—an article written by Brian Clark, founder of Copyblogger, in which he suggests:
“The best way to predict the future is to create your best personal version of it.”