With competition fiercer than ever, you should strive to know your neighbourhood like the back of your hand. By showing an intimate knowledge of the areas you operate in, you can be sure potential clients will turn to you.
Here are 4 hot tips to becoming the local area expert of choice.
#1 – Research your neighbourhood
Placing time and effort into understanding the local real estate market will serve you well. Your potential clients consider property sales or rental history, demographics, and crime stats during the real estate process.
You should also have a clear idea of common property features, popular amenities, and the rules and regulations of living or operating in the area. The more you know your neighbourhood, the more you will be sought out for your services.
You can use the Prop Data Management System to build helpful one-liner stock reports. You can also turn to property trends reports from Lightstone, TPN, PayProp, FNB, and Standard Bank. A lot of this information is available online but your clients will not have the time or know-how to understand and interpret them.
Also, don’t overlook the experiences of local residents. Knock on doors and pick up the phone to find out what they love about the area, the challenges they face, and what they do to overcome them. These will prepare you for the questions potential clients may ask about the area.
#2 – Work on your agent or broker brand
Your brand emphasises your uniqueness and service offerings. It helps you stand out in a sea of other real estate professionals with similar goals. To create a brand your audience will love, understand who they are. Create a persona of your typical client to figure out their needs, experiences, behaviours, and goals. This will help you consider how your properties or services will benefit their lives.
Kim Moodley, a property broker at Blueprint Realty, specialises in properties in Umhlanga and Durban North. In her video, her brand comes through strongly. She speaks affectionately about the importance of family and her passion for her work. By shooting part of the video at the beach, she also brings in an important lifestyle feature her clients appreciate about these areas. Kim’s example shows the importance of authenticity and knowing your clients inside and out.
#3 – Market yourself in your area
Exposure is everything. Create an ongoing campaign that keeps you top of mind and positions you as the best choice for real estate assistance in your area. There is plenty you can do but these strategies are the golden standard for success.
- Killer website: Whether you’re part of an agency or going solo, you definitely want your listings and agent bio in a place people can find online. Your website is also an important point for people to read your testimonials and news articles.
- News articles: By writing news articles, you can show just how much of an expert you are. Keep it local by basing your content around keywords and topics that are relevant to your area.
- Area profiles: These provide a snapshot of your area/s of specialisation. They provide useful information and are also SEO friendly. Well-written area profiles make you easier to find online, bringing in traffic that is likely to be interested in your listings.
- Email newsletters: You have put a lot of effort into your listings, news articles, and area profiles. With email marketing, you can ensure they reach the inboxes of people who want to read them.
- Advertise online: Paid advertising on Google, Facebook, and Instagram are an effective way to target people as they surf online.
- Post on social media: Organic posting is great if you are on a tight budget. By using a range of post types and location-specific hashtags, you can be easily found and delight people interested in or living in your area.
- Google My Business: Do set up your own Google My Business listing page. People can find it and view information related to your work. A validated Google My Business listing also gives you visibility on the search engine without having to rank in organic search results.
- Google News: This is a great way to keep your finger on the pulse of local news. You can set alerts related to your area, real estate, property, and your agency.
- Print media: This marketing will always have a place in real estate brand building. Budget allowing, you should consider business cards, brochures, street pole adverts, and billboards which can help you build your presence in your area.
Balancing your duties as a real estate professional and your marketing can be tricky. A good real estate marketing agency can tailor these strategies to your unique needs.
#4 – Strengthen your ties to the neighbourhood
Being a familiar face nurtures loyalty, and loyalty can lead to repeat business. Your online and print media strategy will work wonders for your reputation. But, you can also take matters into your own hands by networking. Making connections with the people, organisations, and businesses within your community will make it easier to achieve your goals.
Are you involved with a local charity, initiative, NGO, or school? Giving back through donations or volunteering time will earn you brownie points in your area. You make your livelihood through the area so it also makes sense to invest in its upliftment.
Immerse yourself by attending local meetings and events. You help people plant roots or do business in the community so you want to be part of meetings where important grievances are aired and decisions are made. Showing up at events like games, festivals, concerts, and business openings can also make you more familiar around the area.
Another way to take an active role is by signing up for local classes or becoming a member of a club. These will get you closer to the people you do business with. It will also help you learn more about the community in a setting they feel comfortable in.
Consider joining online communities and neighbourhood social media groups. These are an excellent window into the community. Be sure to add value to the conversation instead of just simply pushing your listings and services all the time.
Partnering with local businesses can also give you an edge. Understanding what businesses in the area offer can help you provide answers to client questions. The right connections can also help you promote your business or offer potential clients some exciting incentives.
Guest Article by Prop Data