Before jumping into this week’s post on another way to dominate your local real estate market, I would first like to say thanks to the BiggerPockets Members for being so engaging in the comments section.
People continue to leave comments, sharing their views on my posts and revealing their opinions about real estate marketing. I’ve had a chance to talk to a lot of people behind the curtains on their real estate businesses and how they’re performing in their local markets.
I must say that there are a lot of great minds here on BP, especially when it comes to knowledge of investing. Tons of people are well-seasoned individuals who just come here to learn a little more or to give a helping hand to the newbies. Overall, I just wanted to say thanks a lot to everyone for all of the kind words about my informational blog posts. The responses from friend requests to casual emails about real estate marketing strategies over the past few months have been tremendously fun.
I’m just wondering what’s going to happen when I get into the meat of how to really take your real estate business to an all new level. All that I’ve been doing this past month is getting your workshop set up to receive tons of leads. I started this journey about a month ago when I broke out of the gate with my ultimate guide to real estate marketing.
I followed that up with a simple, but powerful post on how a homeless guy found 8,300 buyers and sellers all in 10 minutes, followed by an article on how to find the local real estate competition. Those were pieces of content that needed to be talked about before moving on to what’s maybe the #1 reason most people will lose out on millions in the years to come.
Hear Me Out
The world around us is changing minute by minute, and those who can adjust to that change are the ones achieving success.
Not to say that the old ways of doing things in real estate are not working, but those who take advantage of what we have — meaning technology — are surpassing the local competition. I can’t tell you how much I’ve seen the birth of the internet change the way that we invest in real estate.
Back in the day, you would simply get a motivated realtor to help bring you properties. They would go out and work the MLS to try to not only find you deals, but to gain those big commission checks for the month for them and the brokers.
Ten years ago, this model worked wonders due to the fact that most people weren’t using the internet as much to find real estate. It was all offline work, from advertising in the newspapers to creating what we call the word of mouth formula.
You see, all of those things still work today, so I don’t want to encourage people to abandon those great marketing strategies; this is something that I’m always preaching to investors. I’m always encouraging them to keep the streets hot with their brands using everything from newspapers to magazines to word of mouth to move their businesses along as far as possible.
Just by doing this, you set yourself up to gain more friends, leads, real estate and success. Heck, you don’t even need the internet to make an awesome living in real estate if you just want to do what I call getting by. You can hand out business cards to tons of people letting them know, “Hey, this is what I do, and if you have a property or know of someone who does, then give me a call.”
You can continue to send out those Yellow Letters and cross your fingers to get that 3 to 4 percent response rate. Good luck on that. You can keep that mailing campaign going to perhaps snag you one or two strong deals a month. It works if you stay consistent with it because the reach and numbers show that if you turn over enough rocks you will find a worm.
Side Note: For all of you out there who use the Yellow Letter formula, I would like you all to stick around for my future posts, where I plan to show you a new method that will get you at least a 8 to 12 percent response rate. I will reveal to you all what I call “Yellow Letters 2.0.” This, along with what I’m talking about today, will take your business to new heights. The other local real estate people will start to wonder where all of the properties are going.
Millions Down the Drain
The #1 real estate marketing mistake that around 98% of real estate entrepreneurs from all walks of life make is not having a website.
No, no, no and no, I’m not talking about that website that your broker gives you if you’re a realtor reading this. I’m talking about a real website that educates your potential buyers and sellers on your services.
Related: 8 Quick Tips for Naming your Website
Not that horrible website that big brand real estate companies give you that only lists properties and a phone number to call the agent or broker. They are only there to show buyers unlimited amounts of properties, which only confuses and overwhelms potential buyers more than before they hit the site.
Most of these sites look like flea markets of properties, pretty much telling the buyer to call if they see something that catches their eye. It doesn’t do anything but list thousands of properties, hoping that someone finds something they like. Crazy thing about it is that every realtor usually gets one of these websites when they join the team.
Most of them take a head shot of their own and post it to their page. It’s usually downhill from there because the realtor has no clue about online marketing, so the site pretty much dies. To make matters worse, these sites are often connected with the main company’s site — and other realtors’ profiles. So before you know it, a potential buyer probably lands on your page, but ends up on someone else’s page, where they will very possibly give the other realtor commission. Meanwhile, the real estate company doesn’t care because they get their commission no matter who makes the sale.
I could go on for days talking about those types of websites. If you’re a realtor reading this, I hope that you understand how much a waste of time some of those sites are. What I wonder is, why in the world would big corporate real estate companies, who have maybe thousands of branches all across the country, give something like this to their brokers to offer for the realtors?
If you’re reading this and have had one of these sites, then you know what the names of these companies are so I don’t have to list them. It’s mind boggling how these companies don’t spend on savvy marketing after realizing they are potentially missing out on millions of dollars a year due to a horrible website platform.
You’d figure that after all of these years, someone would come to them and suggest something that is 100% better than what they have to help their realtors produce more leads and commissions.
Now that I got that out of the way, I want to show you guys why not having a high quality website is costing you millions of dollars each and every year. I will be all of the problems that can be solved by having a site, and after this post if you still choose not to get one, then good luck.
3 Solutions Websites Offer to Real Estate Problems
You find yourself having to repeat yourself time after time, saying the same things over and over again, day and night. Someone gives you a call, and asks, “How can you buy my house?” You stop what you’re doing, and if you’re driving, you pull onto the side of the road to explain your process.
Now, it took around twenty minutes of your time for someone to tell you that they will get back to you. So Sad, huh?
If you have a site, you can easily set up your voicemail to invite potential buyers to visit your URL and get all of the details and many answers to their questions. From there, people can read about all of the ways that you invest in real estate.
You can have the whole process set in stone for them to read over the second that they land on your page. Plus, if they don’t call you in the near future, you haven’t wasted a second on someone who may be kicking rocks. Your time is valuable, so only use it when it comes to putting deals together and closing them.
Not having a website often pushes you into a situation that I’m 100% afraid of. That situation is not having a way to contact my leads with the click of a mouse.
If I’m talking to a potential lead on the phone and they leave without passing on some form of contact, then I just lost them. Yes, you can write down their name and number and hold onto it, but that’s the old school way of doing it, which is time consuming and not as effective as having a website.
By having a site, you can just have people enter their name, address and phone number in what we call an opt-in form. This is something that I will cover in detail later.
This form will house all of your leads and work for you day and night by engaging potential buyers with free content, all on auto pilot. This form of marketing goes a lot deeper than that. Just know that as of now, if you don’t have a website, you can’t do this. There is no way that you can contact 1,000 potential buyers by calling each and every one of them. With a website that includes an auto responder, I can email all of them in about one second.
Without a website, you will never be able to get those thousands of people who search in your local market for real estate. In my local market, there are 1,600 searches for “Shreveport real estate,” 1,300 searches for “Shreveport houses for sale” and 1,300 searches for “Shreveport houses for rent.”
That is a lot of people, and if your real estate business is not online in the form of having a website, then you’re missing out on millions of dollars over the next 2, 3 or 5 years.
Having a website alone will not bring leads in. There is some serious marketing that goes into getting a website to rank in your local city, to even sniff 1% of this traffic.
So, with that being said, in order to dominate any local real estate market, the first thing that I would do is lay the foundation by getting an awesome website.
Next, I would go out and build my local online presence, so that every keyword imaginable that my potential leads type in would bring up my site. By doing this alone, I would never have to do much marketing again because I will position myself in front of those who need my services every single day.
My site does all of the work for me, from the educational level, to the gathering of my leads.
So when the leads do call, I know that they are ready to do business. There is no other form of targeted marketing you can do that will allow you to reach those who need your services better. Newspapers, magazines, radio, or yellow letters can’t do this because they’re not targeted. Meaning, I can spend money on advertising, but if the right person is not there to hear that message when it’s played or displayed, then I’m losing money.
Conversely, those who type in the magic keywords and find your website or online profiles are the ones I want as an investor. Targeted traffic equals more leads and more sales no matter what industry you’re in.
The way you market yourself and the leads you reach can make or break your business. My philosophy is that if you’re going to do this business, then you better go all in and dominate it. No need to potentially leave millions of dollars on the table just because you haven’t taken the time to get a site setup, which is extremely easy and simple to do.
For that reason, I’m going to show you the exact, step-by-step way to set up your site. Yes, I know that there are other great posts here on BP that teach you how to create a website; however, I want to go a little deeper and show you how to set it up in a way that very nearly guarantees success. I will go over what needs to be included and how to maximize on every single page on your site.
Stay tuned for my next article!
Real estate investors: Do you have a website or do you market using old school tools?
Please let us know your thoughts in the comments section below!
Note By BiggerPockets: These are opinions written by the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions of BiggerPockets.