The Business of Real Estate
3 Key Emerging Trends Among Home Buyers and Sellers

3 Key Emerging Trends Among Home Buyers and Sellers

By on Nov 21, 2018 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

The latest Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers from the National Association of Realtors provides an illuminating look at some particularly important trends for real estate professionals in the current climate. In a sense, they’re trends that confirm many pieces of common wisdom about the cornerstones of a successful real estate business, but it’s always interesting to have data to back up those intuitive and evergreen pieces of common sense. In this case, the current landscape confirms that real estate agents likeliest to win and keep clients do so based on expertise, delivery of positive experiences, and reputation and word-of-mouth marketing 1. Expertise Matters More Than Ever In an environment where inventory is remarkably restricted, the expertise a real estate professional brings to the table has come to the forefront of consumer consciousness. Just 7 percent of recent home sales were done on an FSBO (for sale by owner) basis, the smallest share of transactions on record since statistics were first collected on the subject more than 35 years ago. By contrast, a full 90 percent of sellers listed on the MLS (Multiple Listings Service), while 87 percent of buyers purchased their home through an agent or broker. Large majorities of both buyers and sellers indicated they would use their agent again in future. It’s a strong testament to the value that professionalism delivers for clients and a fact worth flagging in your own marketing efforts. 2. Positive Experiences Lead to Repeat Business A key element in the willingness of many clients to recommend their agents for future businesses, and to plan on using them again, was the delivery of positive experiences throughout the processes of purchase and sale. Recently sold homes sold for a final sales price an average of 99 percent of the final listing price. Over 60 percent of buyers and 64 percent of sellers reported being very happy with the process. Customer satisfaction rates will likely never match up one-to-one with client retention rates, but the high confidence shown in these figures makes it clear that it’s always worthwhile to put quality customer service first. 3. Reputation and Word of Mouth are Critical Several stats in the profile put the importance of reputation into sharp...

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4 Proven Tips for Effective Continued Learning

4 Proven Tips for Effective Continued Learning

By on Nov 14, 2018 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

“Never stop learning” is one of the most common pieces of advice in real estate. It pays to stay current, and the highest-earning professionals are very often those who are experts on up-to-date best practices and new technologies. The real trick, however, is putting this advice into practice without burning yourself out in the effort to keep up with the latest trends. There are several simple tips you can follow to be an effective ongoing learner in the real estate sector. 1. Be Active and Attentive The real estate market is always in flux, making it a profession where there’s something new to learn almost every day. There’s no substitute for hands-on experience in working out what best practices will help drive your business to its next big win. Watching what the most successful professionals are doing online, particularly on social media, can lead generation ideas. It allows you to see, practically in real time, the innovations agents are using to get a leg up on the competition and deliver the best possible service to both buyers and sellers. 2. Take Time Out for Continuing Education Blocking time in your schedule for real estate classes or taking time to meet with vendors and service providers, working out new ways that you can best serve your clients, is a crucial investment in your business and in yourself. Holding yourself accountable for scheduling a few hours of continuing education endeavors every week, and sticking to that schedule, is a key means of ensuring that your approach to ongoing learning becomes an effective part of your total approach to real estate. Seek out educational opportunities sponsored by your state, or consider online classes as a way of keeping to this kind of schedule in crunch times. 3. Stay Current with Local Events Constant learning about your local market and community is just as crucial as keeping abreast of trends in the wider industry — indeed, it’s the basic step for taking general knowledge and turning it into practical application. Attending regular meetings of your local Chamber of Commerce, planning and zoning commissions and other community groups can keep your finger on the pulse of what your community wants and needs and how...

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Your Pocket Guide to Top-Quality SEO Content

Your Pocket Guide to Top-Quality SEO Content

By on Oct 19, 2018 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Mastering the art of search engine optimization isn’t easy, especially as this crucial component of website visibility is always evolving. Still, there are a few simple things you can keep in mind to help your site’s content stand out from the pack. These tips may be just a starting point to getting a handle on the broader topic of SEO, but ensuring that you’re covering these key elements is half the battle. 1. Publish Long-Form Content for an Audience You Understand To win at the SEO game, it’s important for content to: Genuinely engage your audience’s interest Include variants of long-tail keywords that are relevant to your business Give search engines lots of material to work with when providing information about your page topic The easiest way to hit all these marks at once is to occasionally produce blog posts of 1,500+ words, the kind of long-form content that allows you to deliver the value that goes with talking about a topic in depth while fulfilling your SEO needs in a naturally flowing way that doesn’t look forced. Your content, of course, won’t rely on length alone; its value stems from providing your readers with detailed access to your expertise and your authentic passions as they pertain to the real estate business. It’s not necessary to go long-form on every post, but the more you’re able to do it, the more valuable your site becomes to potential readers and the better your visibility on search engines is likely to become. 2. Pay Close Attention to Your Content’s Design, Pacing & Flow Regardless of length, the most powerful content does three things: Captures the reader’s attention from the outset Holds their interest with varied and visually pleasing formatting Offers knowledge as part of a naturally flowing, cohesive story The Internet is brimming with useful tools that can help you make all these potential elements of a post work for you, including everything from headline analyzers that can help get your piece off to a dynamic start to readability analyzers that can help tighten up your content and improve its readability. You can also find comprehensive, research-supported guidelines to formatting your content for maximum effectiveness. The more you learn and leverage...

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Instagram Marketing: Getting Seen by a New Generation of Home Buyers

Instagram Marketing: Getting Seen by a New Generation of Home Buyers

By on Oct 11, 2018 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Not long ago, there was a widespread belief in real estate that millennials were destined to be a renter generation. By now, that’s had to give way to a most unexpected reality: According to the National Association of Realtors, millennials compose 36 percent of today’s home buyers, generationally the largest share of the market. They are essentially driving the real estate market, buying in cities large and small. Wherever you’re working, it’s become clear that If you want to sell homes, being visible to this generation is crucial to success. There’s no way around it: Marketing to a generation that may interact more on social media than it does in real life means marketing online, and Instagram is quite clearly an important force in their social media landscape. It’s the second most popular social media platform in America and steadily on the rise, and over 60 percent of Instagram users come from the 18-39 demographic. To capture those crucial eyeballs for your real estate business, there are a few basic guidelines to keep in mind. 1. Engaging Content Means Genuine Passion Millennials grew up with social media and in the information-saturated world of the Internet. They’re savvy media consumers who are generally good at spotting emotionally arid exercises in brand management, and who tend to seek out people — on Instagram and elsewhere — who share their passions for a particular topic. There are good reasons for this: Having genuine passion for a topic is the first and often most important step toward being the kind of expert who’s capable of original insight on the subject matter. The first step to acquiring your audience is to decide what basic qualities they should associate with you. They’ll be visiting your page to get an idea about not just the properties you’re working on but whether you’re the kind of person they want to work with. Whether the virtues that make you stand out are that you’re fun and spontaneous, driven and focused, or insatiably curious and eager to share that curiosity with the world, it’s this honest take on what brings you to real estate that will form the core of your Instagram messaging. 2. Use Video Marketing Photos are...

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Macro-Trend Tips to Supercharge Your Marketing

Macro-Trend Tips to Supercharge Your Marketing

By on Sep 28, 2018 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Taking your marketing to the next level can seem like a daunting task, but there are simple steps you can carry out to make it happen. The key is in harnessing the most significant macro-trends in today’s hyper-connected media environment and making them work for you. With the right approach and a strategic investment of time and energy, it’s possible to hone your marketing while working smarter instead of harder. Follow these tips to increase your visibility and supercharge your engagement with clients and prospective clients alike. 1. Embrace the Power of Video It’s a truism that video marketing can be a powerful tool, but it’s possible to underestimate just how effective it really is. This is true for every kind of business from mega-brands to small firms. The statistics are striking: YouTube alone captures over a billion users, a third of all the people on the internet. Over 90 percent of mobile video viewers share the content they watch with other users, and video marketing delivers almost 50 percent more growth than other media. Landing pages with videos experience almost 80 percent better conversion rates than those without. You don’t need a huge amount of video content to get started. Get a quality camera and video editing software and, with a time investment of 20-30 minutes, make a simple one-minute scripted video that highlights the expertise you can deliver for buyers and sellers in your area. Share it across your social media platforms, especially on Facebook, and you’re on your way to leveraging the most captivating and easily shareable form of trust-building marketing online. 2. Expand Your Reach with Micro-Targeting This is about more than just posting on a range of social media platforms — although that’s certainly a good idea. It’s also about taking advantage of the data at your fingertips to develop your audience on any platform in a more focused way. The headline-grabbing macro-trend of micro-targeting has made headlines in recent years, not all of them savory, but you can engage with this trend in an honest and ethical way using readily available tools and techniques: Long-tailed keywords — phrases likely to be part of a spoken online search — make you more visible to...

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Chasing Your Commission Advance: 5 Ways to Overcome Common Buyer Objections

Chasing Your Commission Advance: 5 Ways to Overcome Common Buyer Objections

By on Aug 18, 2017 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

How sweet would life be if you could just show a home to a buyer, quickly close the deal and go home with your commission advance in one hand and a nice cold drink in the other? Alas, purchasing real estate is not a speedy process, and buyer objections can stall progress in a heartbeat unless you know exactly what to say in order to get the deal back on track. “We’re Just Looking…” Stop viewing this common brush off as a stopping point and reimagine it as a launching pad for what could be a very valuable conversation. To avoid overwhelming tentative shoppers, dial back the “go get ‘em” and respond with an affirmation combined with gentle but leading questions instead: Great! How did you hear about this property? I totally understand. What are you looking for in a home? It’s always smart to browse before you’re ready to buy. Have you seen anything you love? Flip the focus to the buyer’s needs, and their comfort level will soar. “You’re Just in It for the Commission Advance…” There’s a hundred variations on this objection, and they all boil down to one central issue: Buyers assume that an agent is going to put profit above all else. Try to allay their fears by showing an interest in their needs and back story rather than pushing one particular property. Honor their budget, don’t try to talk them into properties that don’t fit their checklist, and most importantly, explain to them how commission structures work. “Our Credit Isn’t Good Enough” This assumption has derailed countless real estate transactions before they even begin. First, establish whether their credit has been confirmed by a lender. If not, explain why it’s in their best interest to meet with one. If they’ve already been turned down by a lender, let them know that different mortgage lenders have different requirements and offer to refer them to someone you trust. “We Can’t Buy Anything Until We Sell Our House” There are at least three approaches here: “Do you need help selling your current home while you look for a new one?” “Would your search be easier if you had a better idea of what your current home...

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