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Author Archive for Anna Spooner – Page 2

Tips for Using Social Media to Sell a Home

Using Social Media to Sell a Home

Combining online and offline marketing is essential to any real estate marketing strategy. A combination of marketing postcards, website marketing, and social media will help you win every time.

Many Realtors® aren’t sure how to approach selling a home on social media. You may share listings on your personal page and possibly on a business page. That’s a good start, but there’s so much more you can do.

A Facebook Page for Real Estate in Your Farm Area

Most Realtors® have an area or neighborhood that they specialize in or would like to work in primarily. To make this a banner year, start now. Create a Facebook page focused on real estate in your preferred area.

Facebook pages like “Beautiful Homes {City}” can gain a lot of followers, and you can share home tips, blog posts, beautiful photos, and of course, your listings!

If you start the page now and promote it using Facebook Ads to those who live in the area, you can have a good fan base by the time the spring selling season hits!

Here are some keys to making your page successful:

  • Be consistent! If you disappear for weeks or months, so will your audience.
  • Post from a variety of sources. Just your website or your listings will seem too promotional, and people won’t stick around.
  • Share the page posts on your personal page and encourage others to share them as well. This will extend the organic reach of the posts.
  • Stay on message – if you post about travel in Peru, it may be interesting, but it will confuse your audience and lower engagement.
  • Run contests and post questions to encourage engagement.

Create Local Boards on Pinterest

Similar to Facebook, local branding is one of the keys you can use on Pinterest. You can create a Pinterest board dedicated to the community you’re farming.

To build interest in your board you can promote pins, or you can invite people to collaborate on your board. When you have collaborators, they can add pins to the board, so you may want to monitor the board from time to time to avoid spam.

You can also create a variety of other home focused and locally focused boards, such as DIY, local events, news items, home décor, and more. As your Pinterest boards gain traction, you can post listing photos and encourage people to click through to your website to view the listing and schedule an appointment.

It takes time to create a locally focused Pinterest account with followers and interest, but once you do, it’s the gift that never stops giving.

Instagram

We’ve posted before about how to use Instagram for real estate, and there are a lot of exciting options. When it comes to marketing a listing, you want to focus on posting beautiful photos and using the appropriate hashtags.

Remember that your connections on Instagram can be buyers, but you can also connect with buyer’s agents by using the appropriate local hashtags. When you attract attention from other agents, they can help you sell your listing.

Video and More Video!

There is live video available on both Facebook and Twitter, and it’s a great way to promote new listings. You can also record regular video and upload it to Facebook and YouTube.

You can do a video of yourself announcing the listing and discussing the features. Make this interesting by telling a story about what it would be like for a new family living there. Play up the house, the neighborhood, the schools, and the shopping and other benefits.

Another great real estate video for listings is the walkthrough. Whether live or prerecorded, a walkthrough video allows interested buyers to see the home without having to go to an open house or make an appointment. Your commentary can help them see the very best features of the home, and imagine themselves living there!

Social media can be a complex marketing channel. It takes time and patience to build up your presence, which is why the slower winter months are the perfect time to start. When you have a strong following, though, you will be able to get tremendous exposure for your listings without spending tons of money. It’s worth it!

Ready to get your business cards updated with new social media info? We’re here to help. Contact us today!           

The Five Best Books for Realtors® in 2017

Best Books for Realtors® in 2017

Real estate agents rarely have time to breathe, much less read. However, you have to find a way, because failing to continue learning and growing is not an option if you want to succeed in real estate.

Often, the slower winter months are a great time to grab a book or two and focus on you – your business, your personal growth, your mindset, and more.

With that in mind, here are some ideas for books you could read this month before the spring and summer season start to heat up!

(This post contains affiliate links, but only because I TRULY believe these books will have a great impact on you!)

The Millionaire Real Estate Agent

I’m going to start right off the bat with one of my favorite books, and one I recommend to agents all the time: The Millionaire Real Estate Agent.

This book is incredible because it combines the reality of real estate with the systems, mindsets, and practices that will get you where you want to go. If you’re focused on making 2017 the year you lift your business to new heights, this book is a must.

Your First Year in Real Estate

Your First Year in Real Estate is a great book if you’re just getting started in real estate, but it’s also a good reminder for veteran Realtors®.

Author Dirk Zeller will help you set important career goals, combine online marketing with traditional print methods, develop essential professional relationships, and more.

If you’re new to the business, or if you’re stuck in a rut, this could be just the boost you need.

The Miracle Morning for Real Estate Agents

I have a good friend whose life was absolutely transformed by The Miracle Morning. Author Hal Elrod talks about how to actually become and stay a morning person, the morning routine that will start your day on the right foot every time, and how to apply it all to real estate.

If you’re tired of rushing out the door with minutes to spare every day, give yourself the mornings you deserve. Grab The Miracle Morning for Real Estate Agents, take notes, and start practicing. You’ll be amazed how much your days will change.

The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide to Real Estate Investing

If you’re ready to attract a whole new kind of client and grow your business in new ways, The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide to Real Estate Investing is where you start.

Investors buy and sell frequently, and getting a reputation as an investor’s Realtor® can help you have consistent income all year long. Word-of-mouth is powerful in the investment community, so once you’ve built a reputation, you’re in great shape!

Best of all – this book is free!!

2,001 Winning Ads for Real Estate

Do you struggle writing copy for your listings? 2,001 Winning Ads for Real Estate is your ultimate cheat sheet.

Take a look at what has worked for other Realtors® in a huge variety of markets. Each chapter is broken down by location, size, style, terms, and specific features. No matter what houses you’ll be selling this year, they’ll move faster when you know exactly how to advertise them!

Keep in mind that these ads will not work word-for-word with today’s advertising standards, but the book will give you great ideas for timeless ways to describe features and tell the story of a home. Human nature stays the same – people buy for the same reasons they always have.

What Are YOU Going to Read?

Five options give you a bit of variety without being overwhelming. No matter where you are in your career or what you will face this year, one of these books is in a position to make a difference.

So, the only question left is – what book are YOU going to read this month? Let me know in the comments!

Making an Impact With Real Estate Postcards

Making an Impact With Real Estate Postcards

Effective real estate marketing never focuses on a single channel. While having online marketing strategies is great, it will be far more powerful if combined with print marketing and in-person outreach as well.

Real estate postcard marketing is a vital way to farm a neighborhood, introduce new listings, and share useful information with prospects. There are so many ways to reach out with postcards, and there’s far less competition in the mailbox than the inbox!

Real Estate Postcard Marketing With EDDM

Every Door Direct Mail, or EDDM, is a huge benefit for Realtors® because it allows you to use postcard marketing without having to buy a mailing list. You also save a significant amount of money on postage using EDDM – so really, it’s a win-win!

The best use for EDDM is for farming outreach and for advertising new listings. You can target the zip codes and postal routes in your desired area and reach every home on the route, without needing names and addresses.

Consistent EDDM is a great way to send useful information to help others know, like, and trust you, without having to pay a fortune for mailing lists and postage.

The Just Listed – Just Sold Postcard Campaign

Some Realtors® have the unfortunate habit of simply mailing postcards occasionally and never making a real system of it. While some mailings are better than none, the reality is you have to be consistent to build your brand.

The Just ListedJust Sold sequence is an excellent way to advertise a listing with several postcard mailings in a row. The way it works is:

  • Coming Soon. You send a coming soon postcard to just the neighborhood around the new listing, to generate buzz and let them know that you’re active in the area.
  • Just Listed. When the listing is official, you may want to buy a mailing list so that you can cast a wider net during your marketing phase. You can choose lists based on age, location, family size, and more.
  • Open House. Using the same list as before, advertise the open house with a simple postcard. This helps remind your prospects that the home is available and invites them to see it.
  • Just Sold. Done! Let everyone, both the neighborhood and your prospects, know that you have successfully sold the house. This will build your brand as well as let potential buyers know they should act quickly next time.

Use Postcards to Drive Traffic to Your Website

Raise your hand if you get way too much email. Oh yes, that’s everyone. Thank you.

Instead of using email as the only way to encourage customers to visit your website, include your website and other contact information on a postcard that you use in your marketing. Make the postcards informative and entertaining, and they’re more likely to be kept.

You can also drive traffic to your website by using postcards to promote a drawing or contest that recipients can enter online. Don’t make the mistake of only mailing once, though – sending one or two reminders is an important way to maximize participation.

Just Have Fun With Real Estate Postcards

Another avenue you can take with real estate postcards is simply to have fun. Celebrate a holiday, send a recipe, or simply share an interesting and less-known fact.

If you can make these postcards especially relevant to your target neighborhood, that is even better. Share a fact about the history of the city, or the anniversary of an important sports win or local event. If your area tends toward a certain demographic, consider sharing something they would find particularly interesting.

The reality is it takes multiple contacts before someone feels like they know you well enough to work with you. Focus on a small area, like one or two target neighborhoods, to maximize your budget. Don’t just choose one of these postcard ideas, mix them up. Keep things interesting by providing a variety of information to your prospects.

If you’re ready to get started with a real estate postcard campaign, we’d love to help! We can work with you to map out a strategy, set up EDDM, and even make sure your postcards are mailed according to your schedule. Contact us today!

Fun Real Estate Marketing: Silly Holidays 2017 (Part 2)

Silly Holidays Real Estate Marketing

Yesterday I shared a list of fun holidays in the first half of the year, along with ideas on how you could leverage those days for your real estate marketing.

If you’re like me, you like to have fun and be a little different, and those things certainly help you stand out to prospects and clients!

Here are some great ideas for the second half of the year:

Third Quarter: Fun Holidays in July – September

Summer is winding down and fall is approaching – it’s a great time to connect with buyers and sellers who want to move before the school year begins!

  • July 7th, Chocolate Day: Who doesn’t love chocolate? Consider doing an outreach postcard with a recipe featuring your favorite chocolate dish to celebrate.
  • July 30th, National Cheesecake Day: Consider sharing your favorite cheesecake flavor on social media and asking others to do the same. Or make a game out of having your network guess your favorite!
  • August 10th, National S’mores Day: Host a s’mores get together in your neighborhood or at your office. You can safely make s’mores indoors or out.
  • August 16th, Joke Day: Send a postcard or a notecard featuring your favorite family-friendly joke or pun. You can also make this a social media outreach!
  • September 28th, National Good Neighbor Day: If there was ever a day made for door-to-door outreach, this is it. Go into your target neighborhood, introduce yourself, and talk about how you can bring in good neighbors.
  • September 29th, International Coffee Day: I don’t know about you, but I celebrate this one every dayInvite a partner, colleague, or prospect out for coffee and connect with them while building your business.

Fourth Quarter: Offbeat Holidays in October – December

Traditional holiday postcards are great, but you can also stand out by celebrating some unique days during the holiday season. Try these ideas on for size:

  • October 8th – 14th, Fire Prevention Week: Ok, this is a whole week, but it gives you the opportunity to reach out in your farm neighborhoods with valuable information. Send flyers that share tips about fire prevention and safety, and include your business card.
  • October 22nd, Make a Difference Day: Join in a volunteer effort or organize a cleanup in your community. Post pictures of your efforts on social media and encourage others to participate!
  • November 13th, World Kindness Day: Publicize a simple give-back, like paying for the coffee of the person behind you at the coffee shop. Do it yourself, and encourage your network to do the same.
  • November 29th, E-Greetings Day: Use this holiday to do a fun outreach to your email list. You can send a joke, pun, silly picture, or whatever makes your heart light. Say hello electronically!
  • December 5th, Day of the Ninja: This holiday is just too cool to skip over. You might send out ninja-themed marketing, or host a ninja dress-up evening for kids at a community center.
  • December 12th, National Gingerbread Day: You can build a gingerbread house with your family and share pictures on Facebook and Instagram, or you can simply find pictures of elaborate gingerbread houses and share the amazement with others.

In the end, silly holidays are not about increasing your workload. It’s about finding unique ways to stand out from a crowd of other Realtors® doing a lot of the same tactics as you are. Whether you celebrate one of these hilarious days or several, you’re sure to bring a smile to someone’s face and be remembered for it!

Fun Real Estate Marketing: Silly Holidays 2017 (Part 1)

Silly Holidays Real Estate Marketing

Are you tired of doing the same thing with your marketing month after month and year after year? Well, I have good news for you – it’s easy to shake things up!

Holidays can be a great way to connect with prospects and former clients, build your brand, and bring a smile to someone’s face. But we all know that everyone sends postcards and notecards around Christmas, Easter, Halloween, and other major holidays.

So – why not be different? Why not find a playful, fun holiday that you can celebrate with a postcard mailing, special event, or outreach?

Here are some great ideas for the first half of the year:

First Quarter: Fun Holidays in January – March

Kicking of the new year with something other than the norm is a great way to stand out to prospects and clients. Here are some unusual first quarter holidays:

  • January 4th, Trivia Day: Consider posting some trivia on your Facebook page or website, and offering a prize for the person who gets the most right.
  • January 13th, National Rubber Duckie Day: Who doesn’t love rubber duckies? Send out a postcard or letter featuring a picture of a rubber duck, or do a toy drive for charity.
  • January 19th, National Popcorn Day: Celebrate national popcorn day by going door-to-door in your target neighborhood handing out microwave popcorn and business cards.
  • February 7th, Send a Card to a Friend Day: Celebrate by sending notecards to former clients or prospects.
  • February 15th, National Gum Drop Day: You can send out candy, pass it out door to door, or host a gum drop themed event at your office.
  • March 11th, Johnny Appleseed Day: Connect with prospects in your target neighborhood by holding a funny Johnny Appleseed party, with apple pie, apple juice, and apple trivia.
  • March 23rd, National Chip and Dip Day: Invite key contacts or partners out for drinks with chips and salsa to reconnect and strengthen relationships.

Second Quarter: Fun Holidays in April – June

As we move into the busy season for real estate, don’t let your marketing lag! Plan ahead to celebrate these fun holidays in the spring and summer months:

  • April 2nd, International Children’s Book Day: Host a read-in at a local library to celebrate children’s literacy, and have business cards available for their parents.
  • April 10th, National Siblings Day: Share a story on social media about you and your siblings if you have them; if not, ask your clients and friends to share their own stories!
  • May 4th, Star Wars Day: May the Fourth Be With You! Participate in a Star Wars themed event, or share funny puns that can be used throughout the year.
  • May 15th, National Chocolate Chip Day: Post a video of yourself enjoying chocolate chip cookies or ice cream, or deliver cookies to your best clients.
  • June 7th, National Chocolate Ice Cream Day: Consider hosting an ice cream social to connect with your community, or take a poll on social media about everyone’s favorite flavor of ice cream.
  • June 18th, National Splurge Day: Consider holding a raffle where you offer a high-value reward, or ask your online community about their biggest purchase!

This is just the beginning – I’ll be sharing tips for the second half of the year tomorrow. But for now, get out your calendar and choose a couple of holidays per quarter. It will help you reach out to prospects and former clients while also having fun!

What’s your favorite off-beat holiday? Share in the comments!

Hilarious Real Estate Marketing Ideas that Worked

Hilarious Real Estate Marketing That Worked

At Printerbees, we’re always major advocates for the tried-and-true. A combination of print and online marketing, done consistently over time, will always win the day.

But that doesn’t mean we’re afraid to think outside the box. Recently, I came across these hilarious, off-the-wall marketing ideas that really worked for the Realtors® who used them.

Take a look at these examples, and consider whether an outrageous marketing tactic or two might fit in with your traditional online and print marketing plan.

Make a Music Video

Doing a cover of Adele is brave, but Megan Hill Mitchum absolutely killed it. Her real-estate focused parody of “Hello” has over 277,000 views on YouTube. With branding prominently featured throughout the video, and a humorous message about life as an agent, this video really connected with people.

If rap is more your style, check out the hilarious “Every Day I’m Hustlin’” by Santa Clara Realtors® Cherie Brown and Zach McReynolds. They use great lyrics and lots of fun rap clichés to share their work in an offbeat and funny way. With over 80,000 views on YouTube, you know it made an impact.

“Open Concept”

Selling a lot isn’t easy, because it’s very difficult to help buyers see the potential of what they can do with it. Instead of trying a traditional route, an Oregon-based Realtor® took a unique approach. He put a red door in the center of the lot and advertised it as the ultimate “open concept” home.

Not only did the online world notice and share the picture widely, but the marketing tactic worked as well – the lot sold shortly after the advertising campaign began.

Build Intrigue

Normally in real estate marketing, we put our best face forward – literally. Our marketing has our picture, our brokerage, our contact information, and more.

That’s a good idea, but sometimes breaking the mold is even better. One Oakland Realtor® started a hashtag, #FASTAGENT, on Twitter. Then, he did bench ads, billboards and more – and they all said #FASTAGENT and nothing more.

The ads created a lot of intrigue, and people went online to find out who or what #FASTAGENT was. They found Kenny’s Twitter profile, which lead to a flood of new leads and closed deals. In fact, he was a finalist in Inman’s most innovative marketing campaigns in 2016.

Play on Current Events

Grabbing current trends and memes and using them in your marketing can be a great way to get attention. You want to do this in a way that makes sense in your market, but it can be a huge draw when done well.

The 2016 presidential election featured two candidates who were not well liked. Many celebrities threatened to move to Canada. A South Carolina real estate agent decided to take advantage of the unrest in a playful way. His “Moving to Canada? We Can Sell Your Home” billboards got broad coverage in various news sources, giving him free publicity and lead to a big spike in his business.

Have Fun With Your Name

Do you have a name that makes you cringe sometimes? Or even a fairly normal name that you could do a play on words with?

Brad Lamb, from Toronto, took advantage of his last name to make a series of ridiculous but extremely memorable ads. They were incredibly popular, and vaulted Mr. Lamb to significant fame. He has a television show on HGTV Canada called Big City Broker, and a song was written about him by Canadian songwriter Final Fantasy.

What’s in a name? Quite a lot!

Make Marketing Memorable

Obviously these few examples just scratch the surface of the innovative, hilarious, and outrageous things you can do to build your brand and market your listings. The key is to have fun and find ways to make your marketing memorable. How can you stand out among the other Realtors® in your area?

When you think of a playful and unforgettable campaign, we’d love to help you get the word out. Take a look at our postcard templates, flyers, and more!

The 3 Fundamental Focuses of Real Estate Marketing

3 Fundamentals of Real Estate Marketing

Do you feel like real estate marketing is complicated? Certainly there are a lot of various tactics, techniques, and activities involved in real estate marketing. But at its foundation, it’s simple.

There are actually only three fundamental focuses that make up real estate marketing. If you feel overwhelmed or don’t know where to start, consider taking just one step in each of these three areas.

#1: Print and Mail Marketing

Some Realtors® consider print and mail marketing “old school,” outdated, and too expensive to pursue. The truth is, direct mail still outperforms digital channels by a significant margin.

There’s so much less competition in the mailbox than the inbox it’s not even funny. You can’t afford to miss out. The return on your investment will be well worth it.

Here are a few ways to implement print and mail marketing:

  • Farming. Farming is still a crucial way to build up your reputation and brand in target neighborhoods. With Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM) making it easy to target a community even without a mailing list, there’s no excuse not to farm!
  • Flyers and Brochures. Having flyers and brochures that you distribute is another way to help your community get to know you. Think outside the box – you can put up flyers at various commercial locations, hand out brochures at a 5K or charity event, and more!
  • Just Listed and Just Sold. By using a planned series of Just Listed and Just Sold postcards, you can build interest in listings, sell them quickly, and promote your success to new prospects. Win-win-win!

#2: Online Real Estate Marketing

Just like you can’t neglect print marketing, you can’t neglect online real estate marketing either. Buyer and sellers will both evaluate you based on your website and online reviews. You can’t be caught off guard.

Over 73% of all Americans go online on a daily basis, and 21% report being online “almost constantly.” Social media, email, and other online strategies are how you meet these prospects where they are – on the internet.

Here are a few ways to implement online real estate marketing:

  • A Community Page. Having a community page on your website is an excellent way to become a go-to destination for prospects in your target neighborhoods. By listing new developments, community news, public events, and more, you can become the online expert in your target area.
  • Create and Join Social Media Communities. Posting once in awhile on social media is fine, but it won’t move the needle on your business. Instead, make the most impact in the least amount of time by being part of targeted online communities. Is there a Facebook group dedicated to your city, state, or area? By joining and sharing regularly, you can build trust and find clients. If there isn’t, create one!
  • Use Video. Video is a technique that helps move people beyond their goldfish-style attention span and commands their attention. By combining images and words, and verbal communication with nonverbal, you get the best of all world. Consider videos that showcase listings, show behind-the-scenes of your work, showcase testimonials, and more!

#3: In-Person Real Estate Marketing

Real estate is a personal business, and the best real estate marketing is focused and personal as well. Sometimes, you just have to physically be there.

Being personally present in target neighborhoods helps you be more than just a face online or in a brochure. It helps people make meaningful personal connections with you, and it’s the fastest way to help people know, like, and trust you.

Here are some ways to take advantage of in-person real estate marketing:

  • Volunteer. It can be hard to authentically connect with people if they see you as a salesperson. Instead, get involved in volunteering and charity events so that you have a natural reason to spend time with people and get to know them. Sometimes moving outside the business bubble brings the best relationships.
  • Serve in Local Politics. Being active in local politics has two benefits. Not only are you able to build relationships with influencers in your city, but you’re also able to help make decisions that can be impactful to the real estate market in your area. By being active, you’re helping make a real difference.
  • Sponsor Charity Events. By hosting or sponsoring charity events, you gain exposure for your real estate business in a way that matters to everyone in your community. Help sponsor a 5K or pancake breakfast or hold a fundraiser for your favorite organization. Being someone who gives back helps you build relationships and encourages others to like and trust you.

If you’ve been in real estate for a while, this article might have seemed a little basic. Let me encourage you – sometimes it pays to step back and look at the basics.

Realtors® busy themselves with dozens and dozens of techniques, tactics, and strategies to build their business and gain clients. Many of these aren’t valuable. By looking at the very basics of real estate marketing, you can evaluate which of your strategies fit in and earn you money, and which you should let go.

Let 2017 be the year you get back to basics, simplify your business, and focus on the systems that bring new clients and new cash into your real estate practice!

How to Find Time For Consistent Real Estate Marketing

Find Time for Consistent Marketing

Recently on Facebook someone asked, “In one word, what do you wish you had more of?” Almost everyone had the same answer, “time.”

Everyone feels like they don’t have enough time, and it’s especially true for Realtors®. Keeping up with your market, showing properties to buyers, marketing listings, keeping up with paperwork, finding time to eat and see your family, and more… who has time for marketing yourself?

You do. And here’s how.

It’s All About the Rocks

You’ve certainly seen this story before, but stick with me.

A professor of philosophy stood before his class with some items in front of him. When the class began, wordlessly he picked up a large empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with rocks about two inches in diameter. He then asked the students if the jar was full.

They agreed that it was full.

So the professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly and watched as the pebbles rolled into the open areas between the rocks. The professor then asked the students again if the jar was full.

They chuckled and agreed that it was indeed full this time.

The professor picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. The sand filled the remaining open areas of the jar.

The jar represents each of our lives. We can fit in so much more than we think if we do it in the right order. The big rocks are major things, and the pebbles the next most important, and the sand the least important.

Of course, if you put the sand in before the big rocks, the big rocks would never fit. Order matters.

Are your key priorities in your business occupying first place?

What Are the Big Rocks in Your Business?

Despite the things that fill your days, there are only a handful of big rocks in your business. For most Realtors®, they are:

  • Marketing to build awareness and gain new clients
  • Serving your existing clients to the best of your ability
  • Staying up to date in your markets and industry
  • Scheduling and protecting personal time to care for yourself and your family

If you can do those four things, you’ve covered the bases to being successful in business. Everything else is pebbles and sand – it can wait until the big rocks are taken care of.

Make Marketing Happen By Planning

The key to keeping up with your personal marketing is not to let any of it take you by surprise. Don’t get to spring and wonder what you’re going to do to drum up listings.

It’s best to do six months to a year of planning at one time, but if you can’t try just doing six to eight weeks in advance. That will allow you to determine a timetable for farming and outreach, order postcards and other print materials, and spend time each day executing on your marketing plan.

Here are three key elements to a marketing plan:

  • Print marketing – mailing farming postcards at least once a month
  • Online marketing – social media, email, and maintaining your website
  • In person marketing – volunteering, networking, and spending time in target neighborhoods

One Step at a Time

When I was in college, I used to tackle major reading assignments by determining when it had to be done, and determining how many pages I had to read per day to reach that target.

It was the only way to stay sane during a time when there was always more to do. By deciding to do a certain number of pages, I could reach a point where I could say I was done for the day.

You can do the same with your marketing. Start by taking one step in each of the three areas above. Just one. Determine what you want to do with that strategy the next six weeks. Then divide it up by week, and then by day.

When you do this, you’ll be able to define exactly what you need to do today to be “done.” Then you can move on to your other priorities, confident that you’ll meet your marketing goals over time.

Need More Help?

One thing we’re proud to offer here at Printerbees is the ability to not only print your postcards but to mail them for you as well. If you provide your mailing list, or give us the information for the EDDM route you’re targeting, we’ll make sure it gets mailed.

If that’s something that would help you, let us know! We’d love to talk to you about how to plan your strategy and how we can help make sure it actually happens. Call or email us today!

Advice Your Sellers are Getting: The Good, Bad, and Ugly

Interested in advice your buyers are receiving? Check out the previous post!

Advice Sellers Receive

Do you shudder when you see some of the advice that’s given to people about to sell their homes? You’re not alone. A lot of the advice given to sellers would be laughable if it weren’t so damaging.

Fortunately, it’s not all bad. Some of the advice sellers get is actually helpful. Regardless, being a great seller’s agent means knowing what your prospects are being told and how to respond to common misconceptions, questions, and concerns.

To help you, here’s a list of common advice sellers are getting and how to be ready to respond.

“Depersonalize Your Home to Sell It Fast”

The Advice:

This practical advice is very helpful. It’s a big put-off to a buyer to come into a home where the walls are covered with the seller’s wedding photos or pictures of their kids. It makes it very hard for the buyer to imagine themselves there.

How to Respond:

You want to encourage sellers to follow this tip. If you’re having a hard time with sellers who want to keep everything they way they wanted it when they lived there, remind them that this is essentially no longer their home. It’s not about what they want anymore, it about what the new homeowner will want.

“Audit Your Agent’s Marketing Techniques”

The Advice:

The idea here is that a seller should look for a quality agent. As a result, sellers who receive this advice may ask a lot of questions about what, exactly, you do to market properties. It may mean that the seller will try to be very hands-on, but it may not.

How to Respond:

The best response to this is to use the prospect’s interest in your marketing to really set yourself apart with your expertise. Describe the various marketing techniques you use and why they’re effective. Whatever you do, don’t get caught unprepared to answer questions about marketing!

“Post a Video Love Letter About Your Home on YouTube”

The Advice:

This hilarious piece of advice tells sellers to get an inexpensive flip camera and walk through the home and neighborhood. Sellers are supposed to narrate what their family loved about the home and the neighborhood, sharing memories and favorite coffee shops.

How to Respond:

The problem with the advice is that buyers aren’t interested in the seller’s experience in the home, they want to imagine their own experience. Assure the homeowner that you will post high-quality photos and video of the home online, and that you will clearly describe the benefits of the home and neighborhood. Explain that you realize telling a story is important, but that it needs to be the buyer’s story.

“Make a Lot of Showing Times Available”

The Advice:

If a seller wants to sell their home quickly for a good price, they need to make it easy for prospective buyers to see the house. This advice tells sellers to make it easy for buyers and Realtors® to schedule a showing by not making the timeframes super restrictive, or their home may be skipped in favor of others.

How to Respond:

While this is generally good advice, as a Realtor® it’s important to make sure your client understands what it takes to have the home ready for a showing. When the seller is clear about how clean it needs to be, they’ll be able to decide how much notice they need before a showing. It’s vital that your client not just leave everything as it lays right before a showing!

“Underprice Your Home to Create a Bidding War”

The Advice:

The idea is that if the home is a great value, more people will be interested, which will increase the number of bids received. This can create a bidding war where the seller gets more than originally anticipated – maybe even more than the house was expected to be worth.

How to Respond:

This is terrible advice for a variety of reasons. First, underpricing a home sends a message to buyers that there must be something wrong with it. Or, they may realize that the seller is trying to create a bidding war, and avoid the drama by looking elsewhere.

Secondly, if a bidding war is created and the selling price is too high, it might not stand up under appraisal, which would nullify the deal and leave the seller worse off than they were before.

Essentially, there’s never a good reason to misprice a home. It’s not strategy, it’s just foolish.

“Do an FSBO to Maximize Your Profit”

The Advice:

This advice is fairly standard – save the commission of your Realtor® by putting the home on the market and “letting it sell itself.”

How to Respond:

Homes don’t sell themselves. Unfortunately, real estate agents seem to constantly be in the position of proving their value. Point out these facts:

  • No one buys a home they don’t know about. Realtors® have the time and expertise to market a home correctly and get the best price in the shortest time.
  • Realtors® can provide expert advice about staging, landscaping, pricing, and more that will help the home sell more quickly. A seller doing this on their own is shooting in the dark.
  • The paperwork involved in properly financing and selling a home is complex and is a major headache to an inexperienced and busy homeowner. As a Realtor®, you know exactly how to do it right and include all of the needed provisions and conditions.

Are You Ready for Your Seller?

This is just a sampling of all of the advice a seller may receive before working with you. It pays to be aware of what people are being told so that you can respond appropriately – in fact, you can answer some objections in advance!

Use some of these pieces of advice as discussion points on your farming postcards. Ask the question, “Should you do X to sell your home?” and then discuss the answer on the postcard. We at Printerbees would be delighted to help you set up the design!

Potential sellers will be very interested in these postcards and will respect your expertise as you answer the exact questions they had in mind! It’s a great way to build rapport through print marketing.

What’s the craziest seller’s advice you’ve heard? Share in the comments!

Advice Your Buyers Are Getting: The Good, Bad, and Ugly

Advice Buyers Receive

When someone is ready to buy a home, it’s 99% certain that they are going to look up advice on how to go about the process. Even folks who are not first-time buyers look for information because they assume, correctly, that the market has changed a lot since they last purchased.

It’d be great if people took advice from you or another qualified professional, but unfortunately, they don’t. As a result, some of the information they receive is good, some is bad, and some is downright ugly.

However, being a great buyer’s agent means knowing what people are being told and how you’ll react to common question and objections. To help, here’s a list of popular advice given to buyers and how to be ready to respond.

“Don’t Buy in a Renter’s Neighborhood”

The Advice:

The idea with this advice is that it only takes a few bad renters to make the neighborhood undesirable to both the buyer and any potential residents that the client may eventually want to sell to. Similar advice is to be sure there are families on the street if you plan to have a family, so your kids have someone to play with.

How to Respond:

First, encourage the buyer to take the long view and realize that things change. Once they have a family, there may be several other families on the street. Or, the families there now may move away. In addition, there can always be renters in a neighborhood. It’s totally outside their control.

Secondly, do your best to match them with a home that fits their needs. Is there an area they could buy in where the HOA prohibits renting? Is there a neighborhood known for great schools that would naturally attract a lot of families with kids?

“Think Long Term – Look for Bones and Resale Value”

The Advice:

A lot of advice to homebuyers, especially first-timers, is to look past the initial appearance. People are encouraged to overlook junk and ignore staging, and just look at the bones of the house. In addition, buyers are encouraged to think beyond today and think about how easy it will be to resell the home in the future.

How to Respond:

First, be sure to point out factors about a possible home that lead to great resale value – a good neighborhood, nearby shopping or schools, and a quiet street, for instance. Avoid showing homes that would be poor long-term investments.

In addition, help your buyers see past staging and make a decision that’s both emotional and reasonable. If a stager put lamps in a bedroom where there are no outlets, point that out. Make sure the buyers know the value they’re getting in a good quality home, not one with pretty “makeup.”

“Know the WHOLE Cost of Owning the Home”

The Advice:

Buyers are frequently told not to budget for the mortgage alone, but also for taxes, HOA fees, upkeep, closing costs, and more. This is great advice because it ensures your buyer is ready to follow through with closing and is much less likely to get cold feet or buyer’s remorse.

How to Respond:

Provide excellent information! Be a buyer’s agent that is truly on your client’s side. Don’t show them homes “just out of range” to try to score a larger commission. That strategy makes the customer feel frustrated and disrespected. Also, it can backfire and lead to a buyer backing out before closing.

By being a buyer’s agent that helps your client understand the full cost of home ownership, you’ll be providing excellent service and generating a lot of good will that will help bring in referrals and great reviews.

“Get an Inspection to Avoid a Lemon”

The Advice:

Buyers are inundated with horror stories of purchases gone wrong and are assured that if they have an inspection, these problems will be discovered before they buy. This is partly true, but not entirely.

How to Respond:

First, help homebuyers be realistic about what they should expect in their price range. If they think they are getting a move-in ready, renovated place with a bottom-level budget, they will be disappointed. Also, help them understand the actual cost of renovation – having a partnership with a contractor they can talk to would be helpful.

Secondly, make sure you have a partnership with an excellent and honest inspector. Let the homeowners know that not all inspectors are created equal and that if they use your resource, you know they’re getting a good one.

Finally, help buyers be realistic about what a home inspection will uncover. An inspection is not a Mike-Holmes-style gut and rebuild. It won’t find everything that might need to be fixed. And repairs are part of owning a home – no inspection will change that.

“Don’t Worry About Being Pre-Approved for a Mortgage”

The Advice:

This is advice that a buyer is likely to get from a friend or relative rather than a buyer’s class or online article. The idea is that a pre-approval isn’t official anyway and that if you’re just starting to look it’s not worth the time or hassle.

How to Respond:

Let a potential buyer know that if they are not pre-approved for a mortgage before looking at homes, they won’t be able to put in an offer on a home they love. It also helps them be clear about their actual budget. Remind them how quickly homes go, and that by the time they get vetted for a mortgage the home they wanted will probably already be purchased by someone else.

You can also choose not to work with buyers who are not pre-approved, to avoid wasting your time. Of course, you should try to convince them to pre-approve before you give up on them.

“You Don’t Need an Agent, Especially if You Buy a FSBO”

The Advice:

People who mistrust real estate agents will tell home buyers to avoid using them. The assumption is that the purchaser and seller are two honest people who will do the deal themselves and cut out the middleman. Both sides supposedly save money.

How to Respond:

This is terrible advice, and not just because Realtors® need to eat. Buying a home is a very complicated process, contracts are incredibly detailed, and inspections, assessments, and closing have a lot of moving parts that can go wrong.

The key is to help home buyers recognize that this is not the same as buying a new pair of jeans or even a new car. They could end up stuck with a home that’s in poor shape, with little to no recourse, because they didn’t handle the legal side correctly. For the biggest investment of their lives, they can’t afford to take that risk.

Are You Ready for Your Buyer?

This article only scratches the surface of the advice buyers receive. By keeping in mind the fact that clients are receiving a lot of advice, much of it from unreliable sources, you are better prepared as a buyer’s agent.

Using your print marketing to address some common misconceptions that buyers have is a good way to build trust and educate your prospects. Whether you need postcards or brochures, Printerbees is here to help!

What’s the craziest advice a buyer has told you they received? Share in the comments!