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Real Estate Sales: It Isn’t For Everyone – and it shows

real estate agent marketing ideasReal Estate Agents: Have you ever met or dealt with another real estate agent and thought: “OH MY GAWD, I CAN’T BELIEVE YOU ARE A REAL ESTATE AGENT?” Do You Think Some Consumers Think The Same Thing?

But I Digress

I played football and hockey in high school in upstate New York, judging from the fact that I did not receive a college scholarship or play PRO, I think you can say I was average. Playing PRO sports is not for everyone. It takes a lot of training, time and dedication to compete on a high level like division 1 college sports or PRO. It’s not for everyone. You know what else is not for everyone? Real Estate Sales. Like college or professional athletics it takes a lot of time and training to be a successful, Real Estate Agent. Some people will rise to the occasion and do what needs to be done to compete and others will do what I call – Fail.

Sales people get a bad rap. I have been in sales in one way or another my whole life. Even when I was in high school and college I was “selling” my teachers and professors on why I did not have an assignment done. I was good too, at least I think I was – I graduated, couldn’t have been that bad right?. Sales people get a bad rap because in one of the world’s 2ND oldest profession – Sales – THERE ARE SO MANY DAMN BAD ONES OUT THERE. What really stinks about being is sales is unlike professional sports or really any other professions [maybe used cars] a bad experience with a bad real estate sales person can cause a consumer to paint all of you with the same brush, “All real estate agents are [insert deragotory comment here]”. Ask a professional athlete or actor for their autograph, if they say NO or ignore you do you think “All professional athletes or all actors are such as$ho&es?” NO, but every bad or bland interaction a consumer has with a real estate agent can cause them to think you are all bad, and it’s not fair. It’s a Sham, it’s a Mockery, It’s a sham-mockery!

Like many real estate professionals I am a member of Trulia.com. Because I have an account and I have filled out my profile and geographic area I get emails from consumers asking questions

“New questions have just been posted in Phoenix”

Most consumers do not go directly to Trulia, they “find” it when they ask a search engine like Google a question which then serves up Trulia as a relevant result to that search. The consumer then visits the website, see’s that it is user friendly and a wealth of information and decide to come back when they are need of more information. I probably get as many as 3 emails a day from consumers asking questions on the site. I am not the only one that gets them, hundreds, maybe even thousands of real estate agents and loan officers get them as well. The questions the consumers ask are great, they offer a window into the psyche of the consumer and how they think. Questions like “Is 1234 E Main Street Still For Sale” , “Can I fire my real estate agent?” “Is Maryvale a safe place to live”, “How are the schools in Gilbert”  “Is now a good time to buy a home” ya know stuff like that. If you remember from my previous posts I have told you that consumers ask a search engine a question for 2 reasons
  1. Gather Information
  2. Solve A Problem
What is funny and this goes back to the subject of this post is the responses some of the real estate agents give to the consumers asking a question. It proves again that sales is not for everyone. I don’t profess to be the best sales person in the whole world but I know that I am good. I know because I spent 10 years in the title industry in Phoenix competing in one of the most competitive markets in the country. It takes a certain amount of salesmanship to convince a real estate agent like yourself to use me rather than one of the other 100 title companies in the Phoenix Market. Notice I said use ME and not my title company. I say ME because people do business with people, not companies. I see so many real estate agents respond to a call for help from a consumer on Trulia [and that is exactly what it is, a request for HELP] with either a response of how strong their real estate brokerage or brand is or even better [NOT] an explanation of why the real estate agent is a good choice to work with because they are a [insert designation here]. I especially enjoy the real estate agent responses that state , “I am a REALTOR, this means I have a strict code of conduct I must abide by a strict set of rules and regulations”  . . .REALLY? That’s all you got? It’s comical to me how many real estate agents have absolutely NO clue how to market themselves or sell anything, as evidenced by their attempt to sell themselves. I bang my head up against the wall [as I am laughing of course] because there is absolutely no value for the consumer in most of the answers the agents submit. If I was a consumer looking to choose a real estate agent based upon their answer to my question I would be thinking “Sell me baby! Show me why you are the best choice for the largest financial decision I will ever make….. Give me a link to a specific page on your website where I can learn more about you, your experience, your expertise, areas you market, client testimonials, the real estate market as you see it, give me the ability to search for homes on your website instead of Trulia’s or Realtor.com or Zillow.com. Give me the information I need and let me make a decision. Don’t give me a canned response like “would you like to see it, I can show you today”, tell me about the area, why you think it is a great area or why another area is better” Tell me how you are going to make my life easier, save me time and money. It’s sad to say but all too often a consumer will pick the first agent that just “shows up”.  Most real estate agents sell the steak, “I am a REALTOR and this means [whatever],  My brokerage has X amount of agents [whatever], My company has X amount of offices [whatever].  All of these things are the steak, the real estate agents that get it will focus on the benefit to the consumer  or end user and sell the “sizzle”. Get yourself a good website, fill it with content your ideal client looks for online when looking to gather information or solve a problem and you will get leads, they will find you when they need you. Then, you need to show up with a strong value proposition – what you do better or differently than all of your competitors, tell, rather SHOW them the vital role you play, how you will make their lives easier or save them time or money and for god sakes. . .answer your damn phone! When the call for help comes in you better answer or someone else – will. I believe every negative experience a consumer has with a real estate agent that has no clue how to set expectations and deliver them or fails to clearly state their value has a negative impact on all of you.


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Stephen

Hi I'm Stephen Garner, I'm just a guy in the title industry {in Phoenix} trying to change how real estate agents market themselves and their services. To that end, I teach my clients HOW TO leverage sales technologies like WordPress, Content, Video, Camtasia, Final Cut X, iMovie and indexable IDX solutions to convey value and help your ideal client find you online when they are most interested in learning about you and your services. I work for escrows. Hire me!

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