Acquiring leads in real estate can be a difficult obstacle for some people. This is because those who are in the game of marketing reap the benefits over time. You see, most people are straight up amateurs in the way that they approach getting leads. Want more articles like this? Create an account today to get BiggerPocket's best blog articles delivered to your inbox Sign up for free Today I want to cover a few things that may be holding you back in the game of real estate marketing and offer a few changes you can make in order to start dominating your local market. There is nothing worse than being a broker, an agent, or an investor who struggles to get hot leads on a regular basis. Now, I know many of you will say leads come in all the time, but I’m talking about the leads that convert on a higher scale. If you want to compete effectively in your market and become the success story, you will need to avoid some of the following mistakes. 1. No Personal Website This may be one of the worst offenses. If you're an agent, you must a have personal website. Amateur real estate people are not spending the money to get online and build their online presence. The truth of the matter is most of them have no clue how not having a website is keeping them from attracting leads. 2. Using That Free Website When you become an agent at the more prominent real estate companies, the brokers will usually give you a website. The sad truth is that those websites are mainly for listing properties and nothing more. This is not a bad thing, but to be able to tackle your local market you’ll need something personal. Getting a personal site that has more functionality will put you above the rest. 3. A Nonexistent Online Presence There is nothing worse than having a nonexistent online presence. This is guaranteed to hurt your overall success. The amateurs seem to not have social media accounts, websites, profiles, or business listings online. To get the upper hand amidst local competition, the key is to be everywhere. This should be your focus in your market regardless of what type of real estate you’re doing. It’s not something that takes a lot of time to implement, but if you set up one or two profiles per day, you will see improvement. Related: How to Blow Your Local Competition Away Using Internet Marketing 4. No Business Cards How and why people do business without business cards is beyond me. You, as a real estate professional, must have a way for those who you meet in the market to easily contact you. A business card is a short, sweet intro into who you are and what you do. Never miss an opportunity to promote yourself. If you make it your duty to put your card in as many people’s hands as possible, then you will get more leads. Just remember, business cards are great, but the message on them is what will get people to take action. 5. Not Networking I’d rather have 10 highly respected real estate people on my side than have to compete with them. Relationships are significant if you want to build your brand. As a real estate marketer, I’ve seen the power of getting to know all the local brokers in my city. Why? If they come across something interesting and we have a good relationship, then there is a good chance I might receive a phone call. So here are a few simple things you can do to get more brokers and real estate professionals to think of you when deals come across their desks. Consider this list of things that will at least get you on their radar. List of Actions Simply call Email someone (ask to have lunch) Follow them on social media Comment on their website (if they have one) Visit their open house (face-to-face is dominant) Send a personal letter via snail mail (yeah, it still works) The things I listed above are all about networking and getting your brand, message, and services in front of people who can bring you more leads. 6. Not Shaking Hands This may seem a lot like networking, but it’s not entirely the same thing. Networking is building relationships with people as you meet them. Your overall goal is to butter them up in hopes of getting leads or business deals down the road. No matter where you’re at, from a workshop to a restaurant to a real estate company, you should be willing to shake every hand. Take it from me. Let people know who you are. I say the dog that barks the loudest is the dog everyone notices and respects. Some people still struggle meeting new people. If this is you, you’re losing as an amateur marketer by not shaking as many hands as you can. Related: Homeless Guy Finds 8,300 Buyers and Sellers in 10 Minutes by Doing the Research 7. Not Keeping Up From the time I started in real estate more than 15 years ago, things have changed completely. Back then, just using bandit signs and placing a few ads in the paper was enough to get your message out. In those times, there was less competition, so it was easier to build a portfolio. The issue now is that a lot of you guys are not keeping up with the times and the internet revolution. I’m shaking my head while I write this because there is so much at your fingertips—technology, information, real estate courses, and other services—to help you get where you need to go. The question most people ask is, where do I start? When it gets confusing, so many of us just throw our hands in the air and give up. So here are a few things I want to leave you with that will help you at least catch up with the times if you haven’t already. Stay on track Get a website (you can’t do business without it) Build an online presence Network with at least one person each day Read at least one to two books a month Follow a great real estate website (read it every day) Parting Words You don’t have to get left behind if you make it your duty to keep educating yourself. Like I told you earlier in one of my first posts on this site, I’m not here to teach real estate. I’m very sure most of you all know how to buy and sell real estate. The marketing side of it is what most people struggle with. I want to challenge you to take action this week. No matter how small the action may be, just go out and implement something. Then come back here and tell the community about it in the comment section below. Finally, if you stay consistent, determined, hungry and open-minded, then the sky will be the limit. What small steps have you taken to up your presence and generate more leads? Let me know in the comments below!