What These Successful Real Estate Agents Wish They’d Known About Marketing When They Were Starting Out

real estate marketing with key and key chain

If you recently earned your real estate license and are ready to jump in, you might feel a little overwhelmed by your options when it comes to marketing, both properties and yourself! Not to worry. We asked a few successful real estate agents what they wish someone had told them about marketing when they were first starting out. Here are their essential marketing tips.

6 Things Real Estate Agents Wish They'd Known About Marketing

1. Social Media Is Your Friend, But Don’t Ignore Print Either

“Besides the basic sales postcards, show sheets, and open houses (which are a must), you need to use social media to help sell your property,” says Andrea E. Wernick, an agent with Warburg Realty in New York.

She suggests using Instagram, Instagram stories, and Facebook to get eyes on listings, then using LinkedIn to reach an entirely different audience. LinkedIn is a great way to show off your professional expertise by sharing relevant stories and networking with potential contacts.

Matt Hernandez, Aceable’s Real Estate Subject Matter Expert, agrees. “Concentrate your time where it is most likely to pay off. The stereotypical signs and ads are great, but these days, most deals happen because of the internet or personal relationships.”

But don’t go all-in on digital and skip other marketing streams. While digital ads and social media are must-dos, traditional advertising needs to be there supporting it. They may be old fashioned, but yards signs work.

2. Networking Is Key

Personal relationships are one of the most powerful tools in your toolbox for generating listings. “When I was starting out, I wish I'd known how important it is to build relationships with clients.  It goes a long way, and can pay dividends in referrals and repeat business,” says Hernandez.

Of course, these days relationships aren’t just built face-to-face, they’re also built online. This is another reason why a great social media presence is crucial. While Instagram and Facebook are good ways to market properties, they’re also good ways to market yourself.

Follow other agents in your area, interact with them, and try to grow your own following. LinkedIn and Twitter are great places to share interesting articles, funny observations about agent life, and connect with real estate influencers in your community.

3. To Sell a Property, Learn to See It Like a Buyer Would

When marketing a property, where you market it and how you market it are equally important. After all, a bunch of buyers and agents looking at a listing that makes the property sound blah or unappealing might almost be worse than nobody looking at the listing at all.

When you’re trying to figure out how to successfully market a property, put yourself in the buyer’s shoes. What about the property catches your eye? Highlight what makes that specific property exciting or unusual. And please, please use high-quality photographs! Nothing tanks a listing faster than blurry, dark, or unclear photography.

Not sure how to think like a buyer? Broker Gerard Splendore has a genius way to do it, especially for new agents: Volunteer to help out a more senior agent at an open house by showing buyers around. “It might not feel worth the effort, but seeing an apartment through the eyes of a buyer — any buyer — puts you on the ‘other side’ of the transaction. Thinking like a buyer only comes from constant exposure to buyers.”

4. A Great Price Beats Great Marketing

It’s probably not what you want to hear, but an alluringly low price can be more powerful than any marketing trick. “At the end of the day, nice photos, a clear floorplan, and good web exposure will get eyes on the property, but the pricing is what gets prospective buyers in the door,” explains New York agent Steven Gotlieb.

The good news is that sometimes a low asking price ends with a bidding war because it attracts so many interested buyers. It’s a strategy some savvy agents use in hot markets. 

5. There’s No Substitute for Knowledge and Enthusiasm

“We have to remember that we are selling a dream — we are selling the next chapter of the prospective buyer’s life,” says Gottlieb. “Staging helps, of course, but a positive and enthusiastic attitude is a huge part of it. I find a way to see the best in all the properties I represent, and I want prospective buyers to see this too.”

Knowing the property you’re selling is a huge part of marketing it. Having the details top of mind when you’re showing a property proves that you are paying attention to it and see it as special, not just another property in a long list of commodities to move.

“Your knowledge and enthusiasm about your listing will definitely help you sell your property!” says agent Andrea E. Wernick.

6. Never Stop Learning

The real estate industry is ever-changing, and it takes a curious mind and the drive to never stop learning to stay on top. From technological advances to staging trends to market fluctuations, keeping abreast of the latest is crucial for the successful agent.

“I wish I had known how difficult a job it is to be a successful real estate broker. Real estate is my fifth career and I’ve excelled in all my others but this career is the hardest one of all,” says Wernick. “You are constantly learning, even if you are a seasoned broker. I appreciate what all my fellow brokers around me do every day, and they deserve every penny they make!”

Want to learn more about how to succeed in real estate? Check out our career center.

Audrey Ference

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