For the past few months, you’ve spent countless hours studying and have passed the exam with flying colors—you’re officially a licensed REALTOR®! So now what? One of the first things to determine are the tools that you’ll need. We’re not just talking about a stack of business cards; it’s more than that. Think along the lines of a set of personal tools that will help you establish a valuable brand and propel you into success.
- Value proposition.
This can really set you apart from the pack. Dig deep to find what makes you unique. What drove you to become an agent in the first place? Maybe it lies within your upbeat personality, your passion to help others, or your knack for crunching numbers. Whatever it is, let it shine through, and tailor your brand around it.You can also build a clever tagline around your value proposition. The tagline can add an exclusive spin to your brand and can be featured in print and nonprint materials.
- Branded print.
When it comes to branded print, different materials work best in certain situations. Use postcards for geographic farming, flyers for new listings, business cards for networking events, and customized newsletters for your sphere. Ensure that all materials highlight important details—your photo, logo, and contact information. If you’re looking to set yourself apart from the competition, consider using American Lifestyle magazine as an invaluable print material. Each high-quality magazine can be personally branded to fit your needs. To gain a client base, drop off promotional copies at local businesses with high foot traffic—restaurants, retail shops, and doctor’s offices.
- Must-have technologies.
The Internet is the first place that prospects will turn to when searching for an agent. Therefore, it’s advantageous to have a website with a coordinating e-mail address that share the same domain. To give off more a professional vibe, stay away from either a Gmail or Yahoo account. You should have business accounts on both Facebook and Instagram—they will help you build brand loyalty and track analytics. In addition, you’ll also need a devoted phone number for prospects to reach you. The majority of agents use a different cell phone, which helps to avoid personal calls and makes you accessible at all times. Remember to have all print materials updated with the correct contact information.
- Build a client list.
In the beginning, you more than likely won’t have an extensive client list, but that’s OK. Identify your core clients (friends and family), and let them know about your new venture. If your own personal sphere doesn’t know that you’re selling real estate, how will anybody else? Consider asking them to spread the word. After all, real estate is built on referrals and word-of-mouth marketing, so your core clients can be extremely valuable to your career.
- Professional headshot.
Your headshot is the foundation of your personal brand. In fact, a high quality picture speaks volumes to prospects. Make sure that your photo conveys what prospects are searching for in an agent—trustworthy, confident, and knowledgeable. Bite the bullet and hire a seasoned photographer. This will give prospects the impression that you value your work and hold yourself to a high standard. A couple of tips to keep in mind—show your teeth when you smile, avoid cheesy poses, pick appropriate attire, and update your headshot every two years.
As time goes on, your personal toolkit may vary based on what you discover works best for you. Just remember: to make money, you need to spend money!