Real Estate Agent and Trainer, Robert Rico, explains the tools and techniques of real estate farming, and why this real estate activity is so important for any successful real estate agent. Do you want to see more video blogs? Subscribe here!
A successful strategy many agents use to create business is called farming – cultivating a specific geographic area to capture leads and business. These real estate agents put in the work now, hoping that in the future, this area will reap a lot of good business and a healthy source of referrals.
Just like a good farmer, a good agent that farms an area will do his or her research thoroughly before spending large amounts of money. They will ask themselves questions like: Are these the clients that I want to work with? Are these the types of homes that I want to sell? They will make sure that these answers are a strong “yes” before spending money or exerting effort farming an unproductive area.
The best way to start is by laying out a game plan for where, when, how, and how often you want to farm for business. The most obvious choice is a high-dollar neighborhood – but are you familiar with it? Can you be trusted as a reliable source of information in that community? It’s better to focus on an area that you know a lot about, your own neighborhood for instance, so that you can be accurate and trustworthy with the information you send out.
A key aspect to market your “farm” should be informing people about the neighborhood, since you want to be seen as the go-to person for real estate in the area. A great thing to include is the value of the recent sales in the neighborhood, giving homeowners an idea of what their house might be worth. This always piques the homeowners’ interest since most of them want to have a general idea of the amount of equity in their home.
Once you’ve decided on a plan and decided what type of marketing materials you will be sending out, the next step is to really flood your market with these materials. Mailers, door hangers, cold calling, door knocking, and neighborhood events are all great ways to get people’s contact information and get your name associated with real estate in their mind. Networking is key! If you do it right, the neighborhood will come to know you as the source of information on real estate and you’ll start building trust.
Building trust is a key aspect of any relationship – especially when hundreds of thousands of dollars are changing hands – and it’s important that your potential clients trust your opinions and your judgment. Since you are acting as both a salesperson and advisor, your clients should want to hear your thoughts and take them into consideration before making any decisions. Building trust means providing accurate, helpful information, so make sure you do your research before sending out materials.
As mentioned, getting your name associated with real estate is paramount and comes with time and effort expended. Since so many agents are out there competing with you, sometimes it can be highly beneficial to use a unique delivery method – like your kids, or riding a Segway! This definitely helps you get remembered more, and when people remember your name more and see your mailers, you will slowly build unconscious trust (“trust capital”).
Once you’ve built up your trust capital and presence within your farming area, the leads you contact should start more easily converting into listing presentations, and with each listing presentation comes an opportunity to win a listing! The goal is to represent your clients’ best interests, thus you want to make sure you know your information backwards and forwards to avoid any mistakes or mix-ups. By restricting your efforts to a certain farming area, sowing the seeds, and reaping the harvest, you will bring in commissions for many years to come!