Meet Henry, the newest team member of North Shore Realty Group in Massachusetts. Henry’s owner, Jamie Koulouras, uses her sweet dog to help her build relationships and grow her real estate business.
Many times Realtors® get stuck in a marketing rut, doing the same things that everyone else is doing, whether they work or not. Jamie was able to break out of this rut, and she recently sat down with me to describe how Henry helps her break the ice in her farm neighborhoods.
“It really just kind of happened,” she told me. “I live in Groveland, MA, and there was a ‘Groveland Day’ event. I bought a booth. They were supposed to have a dog costume contest, so I thought it would be funny to dress Henry up like a Realtor®.” She explained that while there weren’t enough participants to actually hold the dog costume contest, Henry drew plenty of attention.
“I had set up a mini-golf course to draw in children and hopefully have a chance to talk to their parents,” she said. “It didn’t work too well – a few kids came, but the connections weren’t great. Once Henry showed up, though, I had more people at my booth than I ever hoped for!” And, her new marketing technique was born.
Jamie is a Keller Williams agent who only started as a Realtor® two years ago. She knows that building relationships is important, but she hates the idea of seeming slimy when she cold-calls, door-knocks, or does other traditional lead generation activities. However, by using Henry as her ambassador, she’s able to break down walls and make authentic connections. Although she’s only had her dog two months, everyone in the neighborhood already knows him.
She also takes Henry to the local beach and posts about him frequently on social media. Not only does this allow her to make connections with leads, she has friends who are jealous of how much time she gets to spend with her dog as a Realtor®, which has allowed her to share more about the career and invite others to check it out.
You may not have a dog – although you may get one after reading this! – but that’s just fine. Look around in your own life – what do you have that you could use as a way to break down barriers between you and those you can serve as a Realtor®? Babies and young children are often conversation pieces, and help you connect with other parents. Pets are a great relationship starter. If you have a unique hobby, or love to decorate for the holidays, those things can draw people in as well!
When you market your real estate business “outside the box”, you’ll be amazed how many relationships you can build!
What unique marketing technique have you seen be successful? Share in the comments!