Whether you like him or not, Donald Trump is one hell of a marketer and all real estate agents should pay attention to a very important marketing lesson he is demonstrating daily. This article is not taking sides for any political party, but rather to point out what you can learn from him regardless of what side of the political spectrum you reside in.
But how and why?…
Donald Trump is following one of the most important rules of marketing…authenticity and confidence. He is real. He doesn’t take any shit. He is unscripted and says exactly what’s on his mind with no concern about what people think about him.
Ok cool Real Estate Marketing Dude, so what does this have to do with real estate? Get to the point…
Donald is not trying to appeal to everyone like every other candidate is. He knows his audience and speaks directly to them. In a crowded presidential field he is standing out from the bunch! The Donald is not just a person, he is a brand!
So back to real estate and how this helps you…
Real estate agents are a dime a dozen. The industry is flooded with agents so what makes you different? How do you capture the attention of people who may soon need your services?
Consumers think we all offer the same level of service to our clients. Is that true? Of course not. It’s a fact some agents are better than others when it comes to experience, marketing, knowledge, and customer service. However, just because you might be a better agent than some of your peers doesn’t mean that you will do more business than them.What makes you different from the rest of the herd? What makes you stand out and be remembered in your referral marketing efforts? What makes you stand out in your cold marketing efforts from the agent on the bus stop bench? What’s your attraction or USP?
Think about your current marketing efforts and message. What is your brand?
In real estate, you must remember that you are the brand and not the company you work for. Statistics show that only about 2% of consumers pick their agent because of the company they are affiliated with. This means that consumers do not care about where you hang your license. They care more about if they trust and like you.
Donald is leading the pack because he’s NOT trying to appeal to everyone. He’s not a typical lobbyist controlled politician and he’s speaking a way that no Presidential candidate has ever spoken before. That is becoming his attraction. He knows his audience and is speaking directly to them.
Do your know your audience in your marketing efforts?
Well back to marketing for real estate….
The lesson of the story is that the best way to market yourself is to just to be you and know your audience! Nobody can be you better than you. Before you begin any marketing strategy you must first have an identity because it’s that identity that will resonate with your audience. Look at your market and take note at how some of the top agents are positioned.
What’s your positioning or brand all about? What’s your tone? How do you speak to people? How do you want to be perceived?
I’ll start by using myself as an example. I’m not the type that dresses up in suits and talks very formal to my current and potential clients. Sometimes I swear within minutes of meeting someone, but you know what? That’s who I am! My real estate website is www.ChicagoRealEstateDude.com go and check it out and see for yourself.
I know that I’ll probably turn off some of the “professional” crowd, but I’m ok with that because at the end of the day I want to attract people who I would like to work with and they work with me. I’m not trying to go after every single potential client out there. Brands that try to appeal to everyone end up with less than if they defined their audience.
Have you ever gone to a restaurant that literally had every single thing you can think of on their menu and you literally could not decide what to order? What did you remember that restaurant by or did you?
The most successful restaurants only offer a few things on the menu and cater to a specific audience. They have defined their niche. Now let’s define yours.
Let’s go into more detail specifically on referral marketing…
I love referral marketing. I believe it’s the most crucial form of marketing for any real estate agent because 61% of all agent business is directly attributed to referrals and repeat business. Referral marketing is all about being remembered.
If you read one of my pervious articles I speak about the 3 “channels” to use for referral marketing. Check that out if you want but here’s the point. Your uniqueness is what people remember you by so you want to carry that over into your referral marketing efforts.
Facebook/Social Media Marketing
I post cool real estate related stuff on social media that mixes my pesonality in it. Sometimes my posts are crazy, other times they are funny. The point is that I post content that reflects who I am as a person. I am everything short of professional on anything I post because professional is not who I am. Your Facebook posts need to reflect you and not anyone you are trying to be. Be yourself. When you try to put on a front you look stupid.
I’m not saying do what I do. That’s my personality. I’m saying be you and stick with it. Every human being on this earth is unique in their own way. If you are a suit and tie type of guy then be that guy in the social media presence. If you are a super polished strong independent woman who works the seven figure real estate business, then continue to be that person. If you are a surfer real estate agent, then be that dude, but don’t ever change who you are to try to impress others. Your personality should reflect in all your marketing efforts.
I remember a good friend of mine was fired from his job. He took up a financial consulting position with a firm. He went to a week of training and suddenly came back all “professional”. I was like, “who the hell is this dude”. He sent me an email to solicit business from me and made a real professional Facebook post trying to change his image. To be honest I was a little turned off by it. If I needed his services I would use him because I like and trust him, but his new sales attitude turned me off and I felt like I was being sold to.
What do you think?
I love email marketing my database. In real estate you have a couple choices. You can sign up for the cheesy templated “Automated” spam like email programs that turn you into a robot or you can use email marketing to build your brand.
I love using video email marketing to hit my entire rolodex at least 1-3 times a month. Why?
Because a video allows me to be myself a lot better than some boring pre-written email newsletter that annoys the people it’s sent to.
Here’s a piece of advice:
Your database does not give a crap about boring real estate matters that provide absolutely zero value. It’s boring to them the same way it would be boring to you. Have you ever received one of those financial planning emails from someone you know? You can literally fall asleep in the first two pargraphs.
Now if you can create some very useful real estate related content that can provide value to someone while at the same time tie in your personality then now you are talking. Relate your message in the form of a story or recent experience that happened to you perhaps.
How about wishing them a happy holiday? Check out this video I made here for for a Groundhogs Day email. Who sends their database an email on Ground Hogs Day?
Again this is my personality and it works for me. You have to find yours and run with it. These were my stats associated with that email. Is your current email marketing getting a 50% open rate?
People do not use our services frequently so in my opinion the goal of your email marketing should be to be remembered vs. annoy people with stupid crap. Using video in your email marketing efforts allows you to do just that and provide some entertainment in the meanwhile which really nurtures your relationships. That’s the key to this business!
Direct Mail Referral Marketing
Direct mail referral marketing to me is the best channel to use because it’s one of the few physical marketing pieces you can use.
Think about it….
You are going to Cabo San Lucas on vacation.
You see a picture of the beach with the famous arch in the background.
When you get to Cabo San Lucas you visit that very spot you previously saw in that picture.
Which is more memorable? The pictures you saw or the actually physically being there?
I think you know the answer. Any kind of tangible marketing is always more memorable whether it be a client party (experience) or a direct mail piece (physical).
Your direct mail referral marketing can take form of a postcard or even a monthly newsletter, but it cannot be boring. There are many great tools for you to use with technology today (like our CRM, shameless plug:) but my point is this. The entire point of direct mail to your database should be to stay on top of mind so that you are thought of when your recipient needs your services or they come across someone who may need your services.
I suggest using something that’s totally different and stands out from the crowd. Fun Facts, interesting trivia, or anything else that would make someone think…
“Hmmmm that was a cool read”
If you can reflect your personality in it then that’s even better!
Internet & Cold Leads
I love converting because it’s fun when you want it to be. We all know how many tire kickers call in when you are subscribed to an internet type of lead service. However, the agents who do best with these services always have great personalities.
An internet lead is like dating. You have 15 seconds to stand out. You are dealing with a voice and that’s it. You must remember that 60% of all communication is tone. 30% is body language. 10% is actual content.
The tone of your voice is key to cold lead conversion, which is reflected in your brand. Have you been cold called by one of these internet lead companies trying to get you to buy a zip code or something? I get tons of these and typically hate them but here’s what happened:
I always get calls from this company and most times it’s someone you can tell is reading from a script. Within 15 seconds I usually say no thanks and it goes a little something like this;
They say, “Are you telling me you don’t want to sell more houses”
I say, “yes I am telling you that I’m busy enough” and then hang up the phone.
One day I finally was closed. The same company called me up, but this chick was awesome. I think she opened up with something like:
“What’s up Chicago Real Estate Dude, hey I’ll be quick because I know you get these annoying calls all the time. I got some good shit and maybe you can check this out. This thing rocks I’m telling you”
She talked the way I talked so I gave her the time of day and ended up signing up for a 6 month plan at $1,000 a month to test it out. Her tone resonated with me. I’m sure if I was a totally different type of pesonality that she would have approached me differently.
I hate the word scripting because I think it’s cheesy. The big name gurus always give you this script to use and tell you if you read it verbatim that you will be the next millionaire agent. Most of the scripts verbatim are cheesy as hell, but the roadmap on what to say is laid out for you.
Scripts are fine to use as long as you put your own twist on it. Here’s one of the best I seen.
Upon an initial rejection:
“You do know the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again right”? hahahahaha
Yes, that is literally in there.
I understand the point here, but you should word it the way you’d say it. For me I would say something like…
“Look if I didn’t know what I was doing I would’t waste my breath with you on this because I’ve seen this happen time and time again with past clients. They resign their listing agreement with the same agent who’s marketing plan is to put a sign in the yard and list the home on the MLS with mediocre pictures. Truth is if you could not sell your home in this market in under 90 days you are either way overpriced or your marketing sucks. Sorry there’s no way to sugarcoat that. The same seller then wastes another 90 days with the same agent getting the same results. I’m not telling you who to use but I am telling you that I am suggesting you at least check this out. What you got to lose? I would also suggest interviewing at least 3 other agents to you can make the best decision? Sound cool?”
Scripting is the most important form of marketing next to outstanding customer service that you can do.
I can go on and on and give you many more examples, but the truth is this. A few years ago somebody told me that the riches are always in the niches and the masses are for asses. That statement stuck to me and I found it to be so true. In all of your marketing efforts you are better off being you and resonating with those you strike an emotional cord with. Trump is doing it right now and he’s attracting a new audience because of it.
Yes, you might alienate some people who will not like you, but that’s ok. Your marketing efforts will pay off much further, because in real estate you are the brand and not the brokerage you work for.
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