If you want to attract new business and listings in commercial real estate brokerage you must lift your brand and personal exposure to the property market. You must stand out as the best agent for the job and the location. There is no ‘soft approach’ to winning new business in our industry.
In creating exposure to your market, your brokerage brand is one thing to focus on, but your personal profile is another entirely different matter and requires another strategy. Each promotional strategy is quite different and should receive special treatment. Promote your property listings but also promote yourself; separate the concepts and get your marketing set to a plan.
So let’s ‘drill down’ a bit on the brokerage promotion and what you can do. Here are some ideas to help with that brokerage marketing process so that you can attract more business opportunities and client connections.
Exposing the brokerage brand
The real estate brokerage brand is of use when it comes to working with different clients and prospects; those people will have certain expectations of how you can market their property locally, regionally, and nationally. Within the brokerage profile and business structure there will be certain elements of marketing that are attractive and engaging to the clients that you work with.
Here are some of the special items that will need specific attention and should give you some extra leverage with the clients that you interact with:
- Website – Every real estate brokerage will have a web site of some form or another containing listings and local property information. Unfortunately most brokerages tend to overlook the requirements of online marketing and website configuration. Most real estate brokerages are very standard and ordinary when it comes to website use. They will list their properties, but there will be nothing else of any use or attraction to the search engines on those websites. Take your existing website and within its structure integrate social media and blogging strategies. The blogs that you load your website will generally have a greater attraction factor for the search engines. So exactly what is a blog? It is something that you write and create in written article form detailing information in a useful and direct way. That information would relate to the local property market, property conditions, enquiry rates, new development trends and opportunities, and investment strategies. There are plenty of things to write about when you consider your location and property speciality.
- Database – Use your database as a point of difference with all of the property presentations and listing pitches that you do. The size, depth, and relevance of your database will have significant attraction to the clients that you work with. Talk about your database and its list of opportunities for the client as they take their property to the market. Show the client how you can immediately shortlist some people from your contacts and show them the property.
- Signage profile – The signs you have placed on listings in the local area will give you plenty of leverage with local business owners, tenants, and property investors. The signs that you place on exclusive listings should be specifically designed for the property promotion, determine the features and benefits of the property. Get plenty of signboards into your local area on all of your exclusive listings for that very reason. As a side note, any open listings that you work on should only have simple generic signs placed. Some brokers and agents will not place signs on open listings for the simple reason that there is very little control to the marketing process, and quite soon many other agents’ signboards appear on the same property. That then sends the wrong message to the marketplace about your skills and expertise as a brokerage. There is absolutely no point in you being the same as every other agent or broker in the location from a marketing perspective. Stand out as the agent of choice and focus your marketing and signage only towards the listings that really matter and those that are involving exclusivity. The branding exposure that comes to you through an open listing is negligible. Focus your marketing activities on exclusivity at all times as that listing type will give you a lot more market exposure.
- Direct marketing material – You can create some special marketing material for specific circulation through your database, online, and through the mail. Direct marketing material will bring with it a degree of cost related to the specific preparation and distribution. If you are going to create a special marketing brochure on a regular basis, think about the cost process and the frequency of distribution. In commercial real estate brokerage, a quarterly property update in printed brochure form is adequate. Everything else from marketing perspective can be promoted online and dispatched through e-mail distribution.
- Advertising profile – Some brokerages have a specific high level profile in the printed media. Unfortunately the printed media can and will be an expensive ongoing source of marketing. So there is a careful mix to consider between the cost of traditional newspaper marketing and the more effective online promotion. Build your advertising profile across the two separate marketing initiatives. Use vendor paid marketing funds to promote high quality listings.
So there are plenty of things that you can do here to enhance your brand exposure as a broker and as an agent in your local area. Use all of your marketing resources and promotional tools effectively and directly with the clients that you serve. Recognise the speciality that you bring to the property market today and build your marketing profile around that speciality.