It’s 2020 and we feel like we are in the movie “Jumanji” not knowing what is going to be thrown at us next. There is also a good chance your marketing plan that was outlined back in January was also put into flux. With the lack of ability to get face to face with people, other methods are needed to get the word out about your business, listings, and of course your value propositions. You have probably heard your broker, real estate coach, or people like me talk about how video is the best way to convey a message to your target audience and can create a 24/7 selling proposition especially if you post content on platforms like YouTube. If you were holding out, the time to jump on the video train is now. Now is the time to begin leveraging with real estate video and start growing an interested audience!
Let me ask you a question. Are you a Title Insurance sales rep or an account manager? A problem we see in the Title industry is we have far too many “account managers” and not enough true Title Insurance salespeople. You may be reading this and think you know where you fall between the two categories, or maybe you don’t. This blog is meant to be educational and help the people in the account manager role realize they are account managers and how they can add true value to their Realtor and lender clients going forward. This is something that I didn’t figure out for a while after joining the industry back in 2005. When I was started, there was no training for Title Sales reps and I was new to the industry. That makes things tough. Let’s discuss the differences and get you moving in the right direction!
SEO for Realtor websites in 2020. What’s changed? What’s stayed the same? First…let’s back up. SEO is Search Engine Optimization. Essentially it’s the way Google, Yahoo, Bing, and YouTube rank or selects the most relevant content when someone types in phrases or questions on their platforms. Theses “search engines” want to give their users the best experience possible, so creating the right content is important. The issue I see is most Realtors have websites, but few know how to use them correctly. The other issue is the Realtor’s website is given to them by their brokerage. Those two things in combination say–“My online presence through search engines is going to be very minimal.” Let’s change that by walking Realtors through the main functions of SEO that will help them get noticed on that infamous “first-page” where they conduct business.
For Realtors looking to expand their business to the next level, time seems to be the culprit that interferes with their efforts. Lead generation and following up with past clients is a must in our business, and to help leverage that effort, an ISA (Inside Sales Agent) may be your answer.
You might be asking…what does an Inside Sales Agent do? He or she assists with generating listing and buyer appointments, making follow up calls to your sphere of influence, and setting quality inbound and outbound appointments for yourself and other team members. The issue many Realtors face is lost client opportunities, lost commissions, and finding out a past client bought or sold a home and didn’t use you. Why? Because you weren’t top of mind. The Realtor was so busy working on other things, they didn’t make time to stay connected to their warm relationships. The ISA’s job so ensures those things don’t continue to happen. Here are the 4 traits to look for when hiring an ISA.
My father was a semi-truck driver. For many years he would work 60+ hours a week and even sleep over the wheel of his truck because back in the day semi-trucks didn’t have sleepers. He would also help unload the truck and get paid an extra $1 for every 1000lbs of freight he unloaded. That was work. The good thing is I grew up learning what work was all about, the bad thing is I grew up learning that as “work.” It wasn’t until I was much older that I learned and fully understood that leverage is the new hustle. It took many years of failing forward to understand you grow and expand by leveraging your weaknesses so you can lean on your strengths. This applies to many aspects of business, and no greater business than real estate. If you want to truly grow in 2020 and hit that production or GCI number, there has to be changes and additions to what you did in 2019.
If you have been in real estate or any sort of business for a length of time, more than likely you have been told to create a business plan. It might have been written on a note pad, or a large intricate plan that had weekly, monthly, and yearly activities with goals. Regardless of how it was completed, you had a “plan” for success on paper to see every single day. In reality, many of us get really busy, and the real estate business plan in 2020 becomes an after-thought to what we are trying to achieve in the new year. This is a mistake, as failing to plan is planning to fail. When it comes to your 2020 business plan, try to incorporate other activities and goals other than trying to hit a transaction number.
I want to begin this blog by stating ” I am NOT the greatest Title Sales Rep in the world.” This isn’t going to be about my accomplishments or how I built my business. Instead, this is about something that affects every organically grown Title Company and Title Sales Rep who works their butt off to earn the business of a producing Realtor and to have it potentially taken away on a technicality.
As real estate agents, you are mostly taught to market back to your sphere of influence, friends, family, etc. You should be marketing to these people to get qualified buyer and sellers leads, but there is another segment of potential clients that most Realtors don’t think to market to. People who are vendors, and professional referral sources in similar businesses who help to create business.
In this blog, I’m going to discuss how to create another silo of inbound referrals from people you are more than likely neglecting. It’s not a strategy most agents use, but when I have brought it up to my fellow clients, they raise their eyebrows and a light comes on. Let me share it with you!
There are three major pieces to the Title business that affect the real estate transaction. The first piece is sales and marketing…” business development people”. We are the “gas in the car” and make things GO on the front end of things. The last piece is our closing department. The last people a Realtor and home buyer/seller see in the transaction. This person goes over the closing documents and makes it as fun and uplifting experience as possible. The middle piece is the long lost hero of the Title business. They are the Title Company escrow officer. These people work their butt off doing everything necessary to get your transaction to the finish line. They get little love, yet bare the brunt of all parties in the transaction.
One weird issue in our business that we deal with is how to get an earnest money deposit check to a Title Company. In some states, real estate offices hold the EMD, but due to potential liability issues, the trend has moved to the Title Company holding EMD checks. In the past, we have always had clients drop off checks, mail them in, wire the money, or yours truly would drive to the Realtor’s office and pick them up. In the age of being able to scan or take a picture of checks and have them deposited into bank accounts–something had to be done to make things easier for our Realtor clients.