The secret to being a successful real estate agent is fine-tuning your craft. The real estate industry is made up of so many different aspects, and trying to work within all of them can result in feeling burnt out and spread too thin. To avoid this, you must discover your brand and find your niche, so you can be the name people associate with a specific neighborhood or type of property.
So how do you pinpoint where you belong in the industry? How do you start creating a brand based around your values, strengths, and experience? Finding your niche as a real estate agent starts with these six steps:
The first step in finding your niche is carefully analyzing your surroundings. What is the real estate market like where you live? Study the demographics of the buyers and sellers in your area to determine the kind of property that is in the highest demand. Do you work in an area where people come to buy second homes on the water? Is your market geared more toward first-time homeowners or families looking for affordable housing? Define the market where you are to determine what you have to work with and how you can best serve the community.
Identify Your Strengths
Just because you’re surrounded by high-end real estate doesn’t mean you’re passionate about this kind of real estate (or that kind of client.) Maybe you have a heart for helping first-time buyers, or get excited about helping retired vets find safe and accessible housing. Or maybe you love the thrill of a big sale and love the idea of selling multi-million dollar properties on the water. You will be successful at creating a place for yourself in the industry if you find a place that you love.
It’s easy to see the difference between a real estate agent who is just selling what’s available and an agent that loves what he/she is selling. To establish your brand, focus on what you’re passionate about.
The goal of establishing your brand is to have people see a certain logo, color scheme, catchphrase, or picture and immediately think of you. This means the images you choose to represent you must be clear and consistent. Your local content marketing strategies, your website, and your promotional materials must all sync up with each other. Ask yourself these questions as you put together a branding strategy:
- What is your mission? Why do you do what you do?
- Who is your ideal client?
- What are your core values? How will your brand demonstrate these?
- Why should clients choose your business?
- What are you doing that the competition is not?
As you establish your brand, you can run your marketing decisions through these filters to ensure consistency across all platforms.
Connect and Communicate
Once you’ve pinpointed where you fit in the real estate industry, it’s time to work on establishing your brand. This involves reaching out to the community to get your name out there and starting to help people connect your name with a specific type of property or neighborhood.
Think about the organizations, clubs, businesses, and groups you’re already a part of. How can you use your activity within these groups to establish your brand? Sponsor a local sports team, set a booth at the community weekend market, donate to a local youth group, or volunteer at a neighborhood event. What can you do to help people remember your name and what you do?
Keep An Eye On The Competition
You’re probably not the only real estate agent in your area, which means you have plenty of competition. Instead of seeing this as an obstacle, you can choose to see it as an opportunity to gather intel and see what other real estate pros in your area are doing. While it’s important to stand out and come up with unique ideas and innovative branding strategies, it doesn’t hurt to see what others are doing and find ways to personalize it.
If you notice that there are multiple agents in your area specializing in luxury real estate, but there is little representation for smaller housing or commercial property, it may help you fit into a niche with less competition. Look for ways to be a big fish in a small pond so you can be the one who people go to when they want to buy or sell a specific type of property or in a specific area.
Everything You Do Is Your Brand
Whether you like it or not, as you begin to establish yourself as an expert in the industry, everything you do or say will represent your business. You create a reputation for yourself and your business both intentionally and unintentionally. The way you treat people, the way you handle business, the way you interact with the community all contribute to how people see you as a person, and as a professional. If you’re serious about establishing a name for yourself and your local real estate market, you have to be constantly aware of how you are representing your brand.
You’re not just a real estate agent when you’re dressed up and hosting open houses. You’re representing your brand even when you’re off. Be aware of the things you are doing and saying, the places you’re going, and the causes you’re supporting. All of these things will be used to help people determine whether or not they can trust you with one of the biggest financial milestones of their lives.
Finding your niche means choosing to be the best in a small area instead of average in a larger area. When you establish a brand and begin to find your niche, you will be able to serve people better. You will know more about a specific property type or neighborhood than your competitors because you’ve decided to focus all of your attention on one area.
Branding is not something that just happens. It is an intentional business move that sets you up for success. Need help getting started? Check out our resources and online courses to help you find your niche and establish yourself as an expert in the field.