Would you argue that real estate is more about sales or marketing? Many would say sales simply because you’re selling property. Others would dive deeper and argue that marketing comes first. I would say that real estate is about both, but perhaps not in the way that you’d think. Real estate requires you to sell yourself as an agent and build a network that can help you get new listings. Strategic marketing is what makes the sale.
Word of mouth gets you more listings than a canned sales pitch ever will. It only took me a few weeks as a real estate agent in Western Colorado to learn this. People want to work with someone they can trust to sell their biggest asset. The challenge for real estate agents is finding a balance between selling yourself and just being yourself and winning clients organically.
Over the past decade, I’ve worked hard to establish a strong network of my community members, clients, and colleagues who can advocate for my dedication to going above and beyond to sell every listing as fast as possible and for the highest price. Let’s take a closer look at networking, selling yourself, and marketing properties.
Networking is Selling
I know there are many other agents vying for the same listing that I am. Agents with the same track record of selling properties on the Western Slope, the same number of cabins for sale, the same number of unique Colorado listings.
When the playing field is even, your resume has very little to do with why a seller wants to list with you. They’re looking for qualities that fall outside of your portfolio like trustworthiness, honesty, dedication, and connections.
People want to work with people, not businesses. Let’s say you’re thinking about listing your property. If a real estate agent cold-approaches you and goes on and on about why you should hire them and how successful they are, you’ll probably walk the other way. However, if you’re having a great conversation with someone who happens to mention they are a real estate agent at the end, then, you’ll probably want to hear their sales pitch.
Long story short, I know it’s important that people know I’m a real estate agent. But it’s also important that they know I’m involved in the Western Slope community, I advocate for the Western Colorado lifestyle, and I pull out all the stops to help my clients secure a fast sale.
Marketing shouldn’t even be on your mind until you build a network.
Real Estate Marketing
Fast forward. Through your local network, you’ve scored a listing: a gorgeous Colorado cabin on the Grand Mesa. Now, it’s time to shift your thinking from sales to marketing.
One of the most fatal errors a real estate agent can make is assuming a property will sell itself because having a place to live is a basic human need. Maybe that way of thinking works if you’re selling starter homes in Denver. Selling hunting land on the Grand Mesa, equestrian properties on the Western Slope, or remote cabins bordering BLM land requires a lot more tact.
When I get a new listing, I’m not looking at it as another product to sell. I’m evaluating its unique selling propositions, building a buyer persona, and designing a strategy to reach them. Here are a few questions I ask myself:
- Is my target buyer in Western Colorado? Colorado? Out of state?
- What is my target buyer searching to find properties like this?
- How could someone use this property beyond its intended purpose?
- Will this be someone’s investment property, seasonal property, or a full-time residence?
The answers to these questions help me understand:
- If I should focus on local, regional, or national advertising.
- What keywords and phrases will boost my listing in the organic search results?
- How to promote other uses for the property like short-term rental capabilities, development opportunities, or seasonal activities. These answers make great blog posts!
- What my buyer is looking for in a purchase and what they can reasonably afford. A first-time home buyer looking for a full-time residence likely isn’t going to be a target for million-dollar ranch properties.
Why Does The Real Estate Sales Funnel Matter To You?
If you’re thinking about selling your property – especially farms and ranches, hunting properties, or cabins in Western Colorado – choosing the right real estate broker to facilitate the sale and market your property will determine how quickly you sell it and for how much. The agent with the best sales pitch might not know a thing about moving that listing through the marketing section of the funnel to close.
Taking you behind the scenes of how I effectively sell properties shows you what to look for in a real estate agent and what red flags should send you to another brokerage. Ask your listing agent about how they market properties, social media, SEO, and advertising. If they say, “That’s just part of the sales process,” they’re focused on the wrong funnel.