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5 Ways Your Business Card Can Rock Real Estate Marketing

Business Card for Real Estate Marketing

There are a lot of ways to get your name out to your community. You can volunteer, pay for advertising, farm a neighborhood, market online, and more. However, one essential part of marketing is often overlooked – the humble business card.

We all have business cards, but I’m not sure we all know why. As it turns out, a business card can be one of your best marketing resources. Here are five ways to turn your business card into a powerhouse real estate marketing tool.

Use QR Codes to Track Responsiveness

Every given out a dozen business cards and wondered if anyone ever looked at them again? Me too. Fortunately, you can turn your business card into an incentive for action, and then track the responses.

All you need to do is put a QR code on your business card, and offer a free incentive for checking out your site. When they scan the QR code to get their freebie, you have successfully inspired them to take action based on your card. What’s more, they’re now on your website, able to see all of your new listings and recently sold homes!

This gives you a great way to track different outreach tactics and different word tracks that you might use when handing out your card. No more cards-into-the-abyss – now you’ll know if people look at them again!

Make Sure There’s a Call to Action

When you create your business card, don’t just tell prospects about yourself. Tell them what you want them to do! Something as simple as “For current listings, visit www.myweb.com,” certainly counts, but something with more pull and emotion is even better.

Consider calls to action that pull on what clients really want, like “To find your dream home, contact me today!” or “To sell your home quickly for top dollar, contact MyRealtyCompany today!”

Without a call to action, a business card is just a little bit of information. With a call to action, it becomes a powerful real estate marketing tool.

Add Relevant Trivia to Your Card

To spur conversation, try adding a line of local trivia to your card. You can talk about percentage of homes sold in a neighborhood, the effect of a new restaurant on home values, and more. Not only does this get you talking about something, it will help your name stick in the prospects head more easily.

In addition, the trivia will get people thinking about buying and selling homes, which is always helpful. As people share the trivia (and maybe some of your cards?) with their friends, they’ll have a reason to talk about you and the work that you do.

When you engage and amuse people, as well as helping them look smart to their friends, you know you have a great marketing tool!

Add a Testimonial to the Back of Your Card

People love hearing about other people’s experiences – the good, the bad, and the ugly. Include a quote from a satisfied customer on the back of your card, and then include a link where prospects can go for more testimonials if they’re interested.

Not only does this help you start off your interaction with a great endorsement, it also encourages recipients to visit your website. Not only will they see more positive feedback from customers, you can encourage them to visit your just listed and just sold pages for additional information.

Anytime your business card can drive prospects into finding out more information about you and what people think of you, you know you’re doing great with marketing!

Support a Charity or Cause

A lot of times people don’t care what we know until they know that we care. Putting a line on your business card about a charity or cause that you support goes a long way toward adding a personal touch to your outreach. If your brokerage is associated with a specific charity, you could include that too. Something as simple as “Proud Supporter of Disabled Veterans of America” could really make a difference to a prospect.

We want people to know that we aren’t just buyers and sellers, that we are personal, and that we have things close to our heart. By supporting a specific cause publicly on your card, you are putting your heart out to prospects, which makes working with you much more appealing.

Using your business card as an awesome real estate marketing tool isn’t hard. A lot of times it just means including an additional line or QR code on the card, and using that as a conversation point. If you’re looking for help, Printerbees has business cards for every brokerage. Check out our branded cards: Keller Williams, Century 21, Remax, Coldwell Banker, and more!

How do you use your business cards as a marketing tool? Share in the comments!

Create the Perfect Real Estate Business Card

Perfect Real Estate Business CardLasting impressions are made in a matter of moments, especially in real estate. One way to ensure you make a great impression is by having amazing real estate business cards. As a Realtor®, handing out your business card can mean the difference between gaining a customer and losing to a competitor. However, not all business cards are created equal – it’s important that yours stand out and really represent who you are as a professional. Here are some tips on creating the perfect business card.

Standard Size

It’s fun to be creative, but keep your creativity inside the standard sized card. Oddly shaped or sized cards do stand out, but for all the wrong reasons. Customers will find them hard to place in a wallet or standard business card holder, and as a result your real estate business card may get thrown away rather than kept for future reference.

You also want to make sure you choose excellent paper quality to help your cards seem more professional and ensure they hold up inside a wallet or purse. You may also want to choose a supplier that allows you to add additional information to the back of the card, so that you can utilize the full surface.

Choose Complementary Colors

Winning a customer is all about having a business card that stands out in the right way. If you were listing a property, would you want it to have bold, brash colors inside, or complementary tones? Obviously the home that shows best is the one with complementary colors. The same holds true for your real estate business card. You can choose noticeable coloring, but make sure the colors aren’t too bright and don’t clash.

Remember to be careful about using colors that are too similar for the background and the text. The text can disappear into the card, especially after printing. Suppliers and design programs do their best to show you the finished product, but there will always be a difference between the screen and the printed result.

In the same way, detailed pictures should not be located behind text. The text and the details of the picture can trick the eye and result in neither one being clearly visible. A detailed picture in one corner, such as a photograph or logo, and text in a different area is the best strategy.

Mind Your Edges

The edges of a card can be a danger zone. Whether you are designing and printing your own cards or are ordering from a supplier, you want to watch the outside area known as the ‘bleed area’. This is the area where you or the supplier aims to cut the cards. You want to make sure your background color covers this area completely to avoid white edges. However, you also want to make sure no important information carries over into the bleed area. If it does, you could easily end up with your phone number or email address cut off!

In addition, to keep your cards as sharp as possible avoid putting any kind of border around the edge. This is especially true if you are ordering from a supplier and not doing your own cutting. A small change in the cutting zone can result in cards that have only three or two edges bordered, creating a very unprofessional look. In the same way that your property listing photos should be centered and clear, your real estate business cards should also be symmetrical and centered.

Display Your Smiling Face!

As a Realtor®, you are your own brand. You want to make sure that your card shows off a professional image of who you are. This serves three purposes – first, it displays you at your best ever time the customer looks at the card. Second, it helps them remember who you are and what you look like – if they see your picture elsewhere, it will trigger recognition. Finally, a personal picture helps create a personal connection, allowing the customer to feel like they know you despite what may have been a short introduction.

Additionally, make sure you include all relevant information. The more ways a customer can reach you, the better. A phone number and email address are the minimum – if you have an office address, website, or Facebook page that’s even better. Finally, think of a clever or personal tag line that can be the motto of your realty business. By including that on the card, you’ve added another memorable personal touch.

Your real estate business cards are a key part of your realty business. You want them to be colorful but not brash, unique, and display your brand at its best. By being mindful of size, color and edges, you’ll be assured of having a professional card. By placing your clear, smiling picture and personal motto on them, you’ll build recognition and create relationships. These steps will give you the perfect business cards to grow your brand and win customers.

 

Need help getting the perfect real estate business card? Check out PrinterBees right away – we provide professional quality, customizable business cards at a great price

Real Estate Marketing Ideas for 2015

2015 real estate marketing ideasThe New Year is upon us, so it’s time to revamp your marketing efforts for 2015! A new year is a great time to review what worked in 2014 and make plans for what you want to change or continue. Here are some real estate marketing ideas for you to consider for 2015.

Person to Person Interaction

The world has become too impersonal – we rely so much on email, postcards, and social media that we’ve almost forgotten how to actually speak to each other. For your 2015 real estate marketing strategy, place your agency on the front lines of in-person interaction. Here are some ideas on how:

  • Take regular walks in your target neighborhoods. If you have a well-behaved dog, even better! Strike up conversations with homeowners that you see out in their yards and driveways. Get to know them, shake their hand, and offer a useful branded item, such as a pen.
  • Host quarterly in-person events. These can vary throughout the year – perhaps a costume party at your office in the fall, and a free spring-cleaning seminar in the April. By regularly having face-to-face events, you will become well known in your community as a resource and a helper. Even if attendees aren’t buying or selling they likely know someone who is.
  • Participate in festivals, fairs, and other events that take place in your area. This may include attending farmer’s markets regularly, or having a booth at a local fair. Whether you’re simply attending or actually advertising, your presence will make you a trusted, familiar face.

Ask for Referrals!

As much as 75% of a Realtor’s® business comes from referrals and word-of-mouth. As a result, it’s important to not only make yourself known, but to ask for referrals! It costs many times more to get new prospects than it does to keep in touch with previous clients and ask them to help you find new customers. There are several ways to keep the communication going with previous clients:

  • Invite them to your in-person events. Using the “80/20 rule”, you should spend 80% of your interactions being helpful to others and only 20% offering your own services. As a result, you should be offering plenty of events that previous clients can learn from. If they come and gain more valuable knowledge from you, they will keep you in mind if someone they know needs a Realtor®!
  • Keep in touch with regular mailings. These mailing should be different than they ones you send prospects – they should include a thank you for your previous work together and ask for referrals if they know someone who is buying or selling property. These mailings can be holiday cards, seasonal postcards, or – for an especially personal touch – a birthday greeting.
  • Keep in touch on social media and email. Although you can focus on personal interactions in 2015, you can’t neglect the amount of time people spend online. Sprinkle in some emails, social media mentions, and other online interaction to keep your bonds with previous customers strong.

Rework Your Open Houses

Open houses can be one of the most effective ways to introduce buyers and other Realtors® to your listed properties. In your 2015 real estate marketing, focus on giving these a special touch. Here are some ideas:

  • Set up special stations near key features of the home. Everyone understands that staging is a must if you want to sell a home quickly and efficiently. But making interactive stations near key features is a great way to draw special attention to them. Set up some snacks on the beautiful kitchen island, or put some cocoa or cookies near the focal-point fireplace. This will also give people a reason to linger in the most beautiful parts of the home.
  • Consider when you schedule your open houses. Weekend afternoons can be very busy, and many buyers will be working during weekday hours. Consider an evening open house during the week, or a late morning brunch on a weekend.
  • Advertise your open houses in unconventional places. Think about where your ideal buyers are likely to spend a lot of time. Is there a popular gym in the neighborhood? Are there online sites that appeal to that demographic? By using targeted advertising, you can get more of your ideal buyers through the door and increase your chance of selling the home quickly.

A new year doesn’t mean you eliminate everything you did last year to build your real estate business. However, it is a great opportunity to bring new focus to your work. These real estate marketing ideas will help you create personal connections of trust, increase referrals, and make your open houses more effective. Here’s wishing you a prosperous and successful 2015!!

I’ve Been Keeping Secrets…It’s Time You Knew…

Secrets With Friends Book CoverFor the last two years, I’ve been writing a book, just for you…with all my small business secrets!  The book is titled The Secrets I Share With My Friends, Everything I Know About Building A Small Business.  I’m  excited to announce it’s been published and is now available on Amazon.

Why this book is for you, as a Realtor®:

Whether you realize it or not, you ARE a small business owner and seeing your real estate business as a small business will help you to build it up as such.  There’s a big difference between having a real estate business and being a Realtor®.  The real estate business owner has a business that’s of value to someone else, where the Realtor® who didn’t build a business just quits selling real estate one day.  Done, THE END.  There’s nothing beyond the last day of work to show for it, other than years of dedication to helping the people helped along the way.  The name just fades away in to nothingness the day the Realtor® stops serving…the business owner can sell his/her business, has systems, a valuable database, a solid marketing plan and it lives on without her providing income long past the days worked.

There are very few books available (that I’ve been able to find) on how to build up and market a real estate business, that’s why I wrote this book!

I’ve made a lot of mistakes along the way, like the time I showed up to a really important business meeting with a business card I had printed from my computer ink-jet printer.  I’ve included that super embarrassing story in the book along with many other mistakes I’ve made along the way to success as a small business owner.  My personal stories of bumps and bruises received from attending The School Of Hard Knocks can save you from taking the same path.  A path all too common with entrepreneurs and small business owners…and yes, Realtors® too!  If you’ve been in real estate for a while, your story isn’t likely much different than mine when the real estate market crashed and everything when to…ummm…hell!  I’m not sure about you, but I found myself in line at the food bank to make sure I had groceries to feed the kids while trying to meet my financial obligations (1.5M. in debt), with NO income!  Rough times!

The book is filled with an abundance of easy to understand, easy to follow and easy to read information on how to build your real estate business, build a team, hire the right people, delegate what should be delegated, market your brand of real estate, managing business finances, building your prospect list, where to get a list, and everything in between… all the way to retirement.

Reading this book will completely change the way you see your real estate business and the possibilities that exist with some simple planning and thinking ahead.

As a Realtor® maybe retiring and selling your real estate business at some point isn’t something you’re thinking about, right now.  After all,  your clients are doing business with you, versus your business/brokerage.  Changing your thinking around this could be the difference between a comfortable retirement that includes passive income from your real estate business and just deciding to stop selling real estate when you retire with no passive income.  Which path sounds better to you?

As you build up your real estate business, if you build it up with the end in mind, you have the ability to set yourself up for a nice retirement and create a business that pays you even when you’re done and not working any in it longer.  Creating a successful real estate business that can live on without you is easy with some direction on how to do it and I’ve included all of my secrets on how to do that in the book!

The book is getting rave reviews from top thought leaders and coaches like Steve Hardison “The Ultimate Coach” as a blue print for small business owners, like yourself, that’s easy to read because it’s not a boring text book, it’s a memoir that’s interesting, funny and filled with secrets throughout.  Here’s what Steve had to say about the book after reading it in one sitting.

Nadine Larder’s part memoir, part “how to,” and part textbook, “The Secrets I Share With My Friends…,” meets with trumpets of success from world-renowned personal, relationship and business coach Steven Hardison.

“I met Nadine today in the parking garage after attending #ICON 14.  It was my great privilege to be given her first copy of the book, “The Secrets I Share With My Friends: Everything I Know About Building a Small Business.”  After I completed my afternoon with a client, I sat down to thumb through the book she had given me.  I could not simply thumb through it. It was too compelling.

“As I read her book I was amazed at the passion that came through the pages, and I was even more astonished at the content of the information.  It is extraordinary! I can hardly wait to speak with her to tell her what I thought of her masterpiece.  It is beyond brilliant.

“I particularly love her Pssst… comments throughout the book. I will be giving this copy to my daughter who, like Nadine, has the desire to build a small business from the ground up. This book is a brilliant blueprint.

“I do not know Nadine, other than the 5-10 minute encounter in the parking garage, AND I am totally moved by her contribution to me as I have consumed her writing. I can only imagine the impact it will have on readers who are building their own business. My hat is off to this powerful and dynamic woman. Thanks, Nadine. Be blessed.”

Visit www.SmbSmarts.net for more information on the book, Nadine and lots of small business secrets!  You can get the book on Amazon…Grab your copy now!  They’re first edition and we plan do to a reprint soon!

 

A Real Estate Business Card Experiment/Survey: Cast Your Vote on Twitter #RealtorA or #RealtorB

It’s not everyday we get a unique opportunity to put two almost identical business cards side-by-side and make a comparison. I did get permission from the person in each of business cards below before writing the article, who also thought it would be fun social experiment, so please vote. Inquiring minds really want to know. Make sure to click the link below to view the identity and bio of the agents pictured. I’ve removed the contact information on these business cards in hopes of having a little “business card comparison fun”.

You can vote for the agent you’d choose by tweeting me @REMarketingGugu, use #RealtorA or #RealtorB, or by commenting below in the comments section.

Here’s the question:

Which of these Realtors® would you choose to do business with based solely on the business card you see pictured below? Realtor A or Realtor B?

Tweet me @REMarketingGuru #RealtorA or #RealtorB

Real Estate Broker Business Cards

Check out the identity of the Realtor® in each card, by clicking the image or by clicking here now.  What you learn about these two Realtors® may surprise you.

 

Your Email Address Is Making Me Crazy!

Realtor email address . Realtor vanity nameI just glanced down at a business card sitting on my desk that belongs to a friend of mine and I wondered two things:

1) Why didn’t she order her business cards from PrinterBees?  This is a long-time friend and I can’t help but think how the quality would have been much better and the cost, likely much less.
2) Why does her email end with @sbcglobal.net??? Why??? Why?? Why!  It makes me crazy when I think of the risk to her business.

The PrinterBees part allows me to take a closer look at our marketing efforts. I clearly haven’t done an effective job of marketing to her because if I had, she would have either ordered business cards from PrinterBees or possibly dropped me a line as to why she didn’t, such as… “I have to use the in-house printing company…, I totally forgot you print! or the worst case scenario, I used “you bees” before and you suck (Oh NO!!!)”  Either way, the marketing was lacking and I will need to take a much closer look at my personal communication with my sphere of influence, see where there is an opportunity for change. Thankfully there’s always room for improvement.

It was the email part made me crazy! Please hear me Realtors®!!!! Do not allow the success of your business to be in the hands of an internet service provider that could go out of business or change hands tomorrow. Home internet access accounts don’t provide much in a way of guarantees with anything considered critical, these type of home accounts are not intended for business-use, therefore not mission critical.  When you build a business, a brand and a reputation with an email address that belongs to someone else, you’re building on quicksand.   I learned this first hand when I had an @home.net email address, which was changed to an @comcast.net address without my permission when Comcast bought @Home and it “totally sucked”!  I was so aggravated and completely powerless, I had built many business relationships and contacts with that email address and it negatively impacted my business.  I had no recourse because I agreed not to use the account for business when I signed up. (Ahhh..the fine print!)

Realtors® are in the business of long-term relationship building.  Many relationships are built over time and have a high level of trust based stability, consistency and longevity.  Having the same phone, fax and email address will go a long way in a profession where the opportunity to provide your services as a Realtor® happens only once every 3-7 years, on average.

In this digital age your email address is essential to people staying in contact with you, in many cases it’s the ONLY way people may know how to contact you.

Think about this….How will it impact my friend’s business if @sbcglobal.net goes away with or without warning? Her business card says heremail@sbcglobal.net and she’s given away thousands of them, not to mention all of the marketing materials she’s produced over the years.  What if she decides to relocate to an area where they don’t offer SBC Global as a service?  When I lived in California, I had Comcast as my provider, thankfully I didn’t use my @comcast.net email account like my husband who used it as his primary email address. When we moved to Arizona where Comcast doesn’t offer service, he no longer had access to that account and many people lost contact with him as a result.

Be in control of your own destiny by owning your own domain name Namecheap.com - Cheap domain name registration, renewal and transfers - Free SSL Certificates - Web Hostingthat can be hosted anywhere on the Internet and will remain the same, no matter what internet service provider is or isn’t in business.  Owning your own domain not only shows professionalism, it gives you control of your own destiny and the freedom to “move about the country” as they say.

I have a friend who retired from one of the big real estate companies we all know by name after many… many… many years of service.  She had used the corporate email address a good portion of her career and she used it exclusively.   Still very active in real estate, but not as an agent, the company cut her email off because she was no longer an active agent for their company.  It’s reasonable from a corporate standpoint (potential liability and such), but completely unreasonable at the same time from her perspective and there wasn’t anything she could do because it’s their domain, therefore their property.  Her email address is their property.

Protect yourself and your business by owning your own domain. Make sure to read the article “How to avoid domain name disasters”, you’ll be glad you did before you buy that domain.

Always use an email address, fax number and phone number on your real estate marketing materials you own, that you set up personally and personally paid for. He or she with the log in and password is the owner in the eyes of the Internet, so make sure you register for these services yourself.  Treat the purchase of your domain name as you would the purchase of an important piece of property, because that’s exactly what it is when you build a business on it.  We use and recommend NameCheap for purchasing our domains, they have great pricing, great service and it really is hassle free, I’m a fan of hassle free.
Namecheap.com - Cheap domain name registration, renewal and transfers - Free SSL Certificates - Web Hosting

Tips For Tackling The Expired Listing Market: Free Expired Listing Letters Download

Marketing expired listings is how many agents keep their pipelines full and it’s what they specialize in. It’s extremely targeted marketing which limits marketing expenses, you know they want to sell and they’re likely frustrated and looking for a new agent. Can you say “HOT prospect”!

Use these strategies for tackling and marketing to the expired listings in your market.

Timing is everything. You’ve heard the term “you have to strike while the iron is hot“…well, that saying holds true for expired listings if you plan to pursue them as one of your marketing strategies. Marketing to expired listings has to become a routine, something you do daily, without fail. It requires checking the MLS every day for which listings in your market have expired and following-up with that expired listing on the VERY day it expires. If you can commit to it and stick with it, it pays big dividends, because it’s such a targeted list of prospects.

Expired Listing Postcard SamplesMany Realtors® use expired listing door-hangers as a way to market to the expired listing on the very day it expires.  Door-hangers are effective because they “greet people at their door“, it isn’t as invasive or intimidating as knocking on the door and it lets the person know you went out of your way to stop by.  My favorite thing about door-hangers is that they are less likely to get lost in the pile of mail, so it stands out more.  It’s not nearly as common as postcard marketing.

Following-up is everything if you want to find success with expired listings.  Most won’t follow-up, so being one of the few who does will easily make you stand out in the onslaught of marketing the homeowner with the expired listing is receiving. Ways to follow-up could be a quick phone call offering your services and expertise as they consider their options.  Drop a letter in the mail (register below to receive some free expired listing letters for download) offering your expertise and assistance.    Send a expired listing postcard offering the same; your services, your assistance and your expertise as a consultant.   Work on establishing a relationship vs. trying to immediately get a listing agreement signed.  People with expired listings are frustrated and need consoling and understanding vs. a high-pressure sales pitch.  They want to understand what went wrong and want someone who will communicate with them.

Make sure your photo is on everything.  There are many articles on this site about the importance of a good  head-shot photo for your marketing materials.  People do business with people they know and like.  You will become more familiar to people when they can put a face with your name, recognize you around town and “see you” over and over again.  When you’re in real estate sales, familiarity and relationship building is imperative to your success.postcard-sale2

When choosing a photo for your real estate marketing marketing materials, choose a photo that shows who you are as a Realtor®/person.  If you would never show up to a listing appointment in a suit, then don’t put a photo of yourself in a suit on your real estate cards or marketing.  That’s not really who you are.  Show up on your marketing materials how you show up for appointments or open houses, that’s likely a good representation of you.

Please ask any questions you have about how to improve your “expired listing marketing game plan” and share any ideas you have that will help others with their marketing to expired listings.  We want to hear from you!Real Estate Business Cards

Get the Expired Listing Letters emailed to you along with handout “The Top Three Reasons Listings Expire”:

The documents are fully editable and and I hope it helps you get those listings! Keep us posted on your results.

Pardon My Business Card, I Got Them From…

I’ll leave it to you to finish that sentence, but I think we all know the answer because we’ve either said it ourselves or heard someone say it as they handed us a business card. Your business card is your most important marketing collateral. Seriously, your business card says so much about you and your business…far beyond your contact information.

Your business card shows your professionalism in the details. The details are what people notice and focus on when considering life changing decisions, like buying or selling a house. Is the business card flimsy or thick? Does the design go all the way to the edge or is there a white box all the way around the card (clear sign it was printed at home!). Does the business card have basic “clip art” on it, like the kind you get when you look through the business card binders at the office supply store. Are the photos or images distorted or grainy and pixelated? Is the business card a template that’s been seen time and time again, because about a million other people chose that same template to type their contact information on?

How embarrassing is it when two women show up to the same party wearing the same dress? Same goes for your business card! Guys, you’ll just have to trust me on this one.

The same goes for any marketing materials you hand a prospect. Presentation is everything and “do-it-yourself” marketing is obvious and unprofessional, especially when compared with someone who has presented themselves professionally in that regard.

If the words, “pardon my business card” or anything close to it come out of your mouth as you hand someone your card, you have a problem and you should stop handing out your business cards until you fix it. The people you hand your business card to aren’t going to take your business any more serious than you do. If you have to apologize for your most important and basic marketing piece, are you really even in business?

I’m pretty passionate about this whole business card thing, because I’ve been “called out” on the presentation of my own business card. I lost a really large training contract because my business card didn’t say what I said about my business. My business card said that I hadn’t really begun my business yet because they were printed at home to save on expenses. Big lesson, thank goodness the guy was honest with me. I ordered business cards that very same day and back then, they cost so much more than they do now. I was never going to allow that to happen to me again and I made sure they had two-colors! I wanted to be clear I had spent money on my cards and was taken serious about my business, and in the 90’s, two colors on a business card was a fortune!

Check out the business cards at PrinterBees, with a specialty in real estate marketing. There are really professional and original business card designs to choose from. Each one is customized for you to your specification by a professional graphics designer. The cost is only $69.99 for 1000 business cards, delivered. No shipping, no tax, no set up. $69.99 delivered to your door. The cards are printed on thick card stock and look like you spent a hundred bucks on them.

Don’t make the same mistake I made when I was young when it’s so simple to fix and there is help available from people who know what they’re doing. At PrinterBees, there’s no additional fees for the help, it’s included. People shouldn’t sell their own homes and Realtors shouldn’t design their own business cards…or marketing materials (unless, you’re a graphics designer!)