Marketing to get more leads for your real estate business is challenge but it gets even harder during a sellers market. Grace Mills gives some of her best strategies to keep your business thriving even when the market is changing.
Marketing In A Seller’s Market By Grace Mills
I wanted to hop on and share a conversation that came on one of our radio coaching calls that I’m sure many of you can relate to, are dealing with, and trying to sort and navigate through. That is the seller’s market. Many of you are dealing with a seller’s market. It’s getting tight and competitive. There are not as many opportunities out there. Inventory is low. In our actual coaching call, we came up with how you navigate dealing with that. How do you navigate your marketing strategies? What should you be focusing on? How do you handle marketing when you’re in a seller’s market, inventory is lower, and things are a little bit tighter?
I wanted to hop on here and share this with you as I’m sure you’re dealing with the same. If there’s any way I can provide any value to you, I love being able to do them. This is one of them that I’d like to be able to add as much value to as well. It gets to be a point where you get a little stumped, and you’re like, “What do I do? What’s my next move?” I want to start attacking the first piece that comes up. That’s marketing spending or spending in general on marketing.
It’s very easy when things get tight or inventory is low, and it starts to feel like there are not as many opportunities out there for someone to go with the way my market looks, and because this is a seller’s market, what is the point in continuing to spend any money on marketing? Should I pull all of my marketing money and maybe hold out and wait until the market picks back up again?
Maybe I’ll stop spending money at all in terms of marketing and pull back and wait for the market to crash or return back to normalcy. The short answer is that you never want to stop marketing. There’s no way for you to make money if you’re not marketing. You’ve got to keep putting yourself out there and showing your face so people know who you are, know that you can help them, and provide an actual service that can be helpful to what they’re dealing with.
The first piece of that is you do not want to stop marketing. If you cut off all of your marketing, you’re going to lose all of the momentum that you have been building up around the marketing that you have been doing. You’re ripping all that momentum out, and then when you decide to try and jump back in, you’re going to try and figure out how to get hot again. It’s much easier to keep going when you’re already hot than it is for you to stop yourself and then go, “Let me reignite myself and get my marketing back up again.” You’re going to lose a whole lot of that momentum.
The first piece of that is you do not want to completely stop it. You may be at a point where you start considering what exactly you keep and then what you focus on in terms of your marketing strategy. That’s the second piece I want to go over with you. If you’re in a situation where you’re going like, “I keep my marketing consistent, but then what do I do with all of the marketing channels?” Depending on where you’re at with your marketing budget, it may be best for you to niche down and start focusing on maybe the top 2 or just 2 marketing channels for your business.
If you can be a little bit more targeted in what you’re saying and what you provide as a service, it can go a long way for an actual seller.
Maybe you’re in a position where you can stretch your marketing budget, and you’re like, “I can still play with 2 to 3.” My biggest recommendation is when you’re navigating your marketing strategy, you want to stay consistent, but you also want to be targeted as much as possible. You want to be targeted with the actual channels you’re utilizing. This is not the time for you to start throwing money on a wall and hoping that it sticks or marketing broadly with no real plan, strategy, or structure. That’s not the time to do that. If something is getting tight and competitive, you want to be as targeted as possible. Throwing money around broadly is not going to achieve that.
The second piece of being targeted is within those targeted marketing channels that you are focusing on, your message needs to be that much more targeted. I’m going to use direct mail as an example. If everyone is doing direct mail, a seller gets ten direct mail cards, they all look roughly the same, have the same message, the same unique selling points, the same phrasing, or provide cash offers, and they’re like, “Give me a call. Here’s my company name,” it comes across as generic because everyone’s utilizing the same type of cards, the same messaging, and the same selling points.
There’s nothing about your card if you’re approaching it that way that the seller is going to go, “Let me call you directly.” It’s not going to make a difference for them. You didn’t stand out. They’re going to just go, “I could probably sell my house for cash. I’ve got all these ten cards that are roughly all proposing the same thing.”
They’re going to call your competitors because there’s no real reason in terms of your messaging for them to want to pick up the phone and call you directly. You didn’t say anything uniquely. There was nothing unique about your message. To stand out and make sure that you are putting yourself in a position to get as many opportunities as possible, you want to enter yourself out there a little bit more in terms of your messaging.
It may be great for you to take a second to start to consider that as a business, what is it that you can provide that maybe your competitors can’t compete with? What is it that makes your service more unique? You have the price, but outside of price, what else is there? There are still sellers out there who aren’t just sold on the idea of price. We know this. In this industry, it’s common for you to come across people that have unique, sticky situations. Their situations are not pretty. They’re not cookie-cutters. It can sometimes be uncomfortable trying to explain or express that to someone to who they’re trying to sell a property to potentially.
It may be helpful for you that whatever those marketing channels are trying to niche down to, you take it a step further with your messaging. Maybe you explain the fact that you are flexible. You understand like, “I like working one-on-one with people. I understand that everyone has their own unique situation, so my company prides itself on spending one-on-one time with each seller, going over all of their needs to make sure that they have everything they need.” Maybe you provide moving services, or maybe you are flexible on closing times to give them some more wiggle room.
For every seller selling something, they’ve got to go live somewhere else. It sounds captain obvious to throw those things in there, but when the seller sees your actual marketing, they’re going to feel heard. From all the marketing of, “Sell your home to me. I’ll buy your house. Sell your home here,” with all of these messages being thrown out at them, it’s nice to come across something that feels relatable and more personal. They’re like, “I felt heard when I read that.” Your message to them was uniquely calling out their situation and then also saying that you pride yourself on taking care of people in their actual situation beyond just price. Price is not the only thing that’s valuable.
There are a lot of sellers who are not solely sold on that because they know that they’ve got some other unique things going on with their situation. If you can at least enter yourself out there and be a little bit more targeted in what you’re saying and what you really do provide as a service, it can go a long way for an actual seller.
On top of that, not only is it targeted with messaging, you could even start to express how many different ways you can get that information to them. For example, you don’t mind meeting with them in person to go over their contract or discuss their actual market. You can do FaceTime and Facebook calls. You want to take as many opportunities as you can to enter yourself out there as you are a differentiator from your other competitors.
They’re going to get offers from anywhere and everywhere, but what makes you so unique? You’re the only investor who is providing FaceTime calls or offering to jump onto Facebook with them to go over everything. A huge gap that you could also be fulfilling is on the education side. With all of these offers being thrown at sellers, no one’s providing any education. No one’s explaining anything to them. They’re just being thrown a bunch of offers. For a seller, it could be helpful for you to take it a step further and say, “I’d like to be able to sit down and go over the entire contract with you. Not only do I go over the entire contract with you, but I could also go over the entire market and what is happening with the market.”
A lot of sellers have the wrong information, so they have no understanding of where maybe their property specifically stands within the market. They may need you to sit down and say, “Let me tell you why my offer is my offer. This is what the market looks like in general. This is what’s going on this side of town where your property is, and this is what is going on this street on this side of town. With the bedroom size or square footage and the potential repairs it may need, here’s where your property stands within this market on this side of the street on this side of town.” No one’s doing that for them.
They’re just being thrown information, a bunch of numbers, and a bunch of offers without anyone ever stopping to educate them. That could be a huge gap for you to come in and fulfill by simply sitting still with them and at least educating them on what is happening in their market and why your offer is their actual offer, or even explaining and educating them the way offers work.
There’s no one-trick pony. Real estate allows you to be creative, so tap into that.
There are a lot of sellers who will probably say to you, “I’ve already got 2 or 3 offers on the property.” If you’re like, “Were those written, or were those verbal? Also, why is there an actual difference there?” They would have no idea. They’re being thrown so many things at one time that it can be super useful for you to sit down, explain, and educate the way that things are going. There has to be something a little bit more valuable. Believe me, there are still sellers out there who are not sold on price.
I would not encourage you to allow your services to seem only valuable based on price alone. You want to make sure that you enter yourself out there a little more by going a little further in the way that you can help them by being more flexible. Maybe you’ve got top-notch customer service, a bilingual staff, or whatever that is. As many things that you can offer to make sure that person feels taken care of and heard is going to make a huge difference. Stay consistent with your marketing, but get niched down in the marketing channels, get very targeted, and start being more specific in what you’re saying to make sure that they’ve heard in those marketing channels.
The third piece is you can stay consistent, can be targeted, niched down, and get your messaging, but all of that will fall apart if you are talking to the seller and throw in the towel and stop following up because they told you no or because they told you they were entertaining another offer. You cannot get defeated and go, “They said that they’ve already got two offers here. They said no to my offer, so I’m never calling this seller back again and never want to talk to them.” It made you stay consistent and niching everything down all pointless.
A huge piece that you could be missing out on is simply following up and following through. They get so many offers from so many different places that no one’s stopping to educate them. A lot of your competitors are going to stop following up. Another opportunity for you to grab them is in your actual follow-up.
A great thing that our acquisition managers like to pay attention to is straight-out asking the seller what type of offers they are getting. Were they verbal? Were they written? Did they already have any fees subtracted out of there? They’re the seller through understanding why those things matter, what those things potentially look like, and therefore why our offer is our actual offer based on those things.
If you can take a second to help that seller start to understand all of these pieces, it can make a huge difference, but don’t quit following up with them. They may say, “I’m going to go ahead and take the listing agreement. I’ll start working with an agent, and I’m going to take the retail route,” and then 10 or 15 days into it, they’re like, “I hate this.” They almost forgot about the fact that their house used to be a little bit more cleaned up for showings, and they are tired of people potentially walking through their home. They didn’t realize that they were not going to be super happy with that prior to agreeing to that listing.
Keeping them on a follow-up to say, “I hear you say that you’re going to take this offer, but it can potentially fall through,” buyers back out all the time. They may want the retail with an agent. They could potentially go halfway through it. They’re not having a great time or a great experience, so reaching back up and following up to see how things are going and letting them know that you’re still happy to help them with their situation can go a long way.
If I have to re-summarize all of those points there, stay consistent with your marketing. This is not the time for you to pull marketing because it’s getting tight, or you feel like the inventory is a little bit getting low. You want to make sure that you are staying targeted by niching down your top two marketing channels and focusing on that, and then getting specific and targeted about your actual messaging to these actual sellers so they know that you can provide more meaningful services to them and not just a price alone. You don’t want to do all that work and then throw in the towel and quit, but follow up or follow through because you could be missing out on opportunities there.
Lastly, if there’s anything that I can throw in for added value to get you thinking out there as investors, real estate gives you the opportunity to be creative. That’s the great thing about being in this industry. There’s no one-trick pony. There’s no one way to skin this. Real estate allows you to be creative, so tap into that. You could go as far as double-backing some of your past clients and maybe incentivize them with a referral to say, “If you’re able to refer a seller to me and they closed, we pay upwards of $500 in terms of referral and referral payouts.”
You could even incentivize sellers. Depending on the way you’re structured with your business and the money that you have available to play with, you may say to sellers, “I’m able to provide $800 or $1,000 cash upfront prior to closing to help you prepare for your situation,” because you know that they’re going to need extra help with moving.
You could be like, “If you are signed, and we know that we’ve got a closing day schedule, I’m happy to kick over some extra funds your way as well prior to your actual closing date,” which could be helpful to their situation. It’s something that maybe your other competitors are not doing, but either way, there are many ways for you to get creative in general with how to help these sellers.
The way to navigate the seller’s market is you want to stay consistent. Be targeted and follow through. Maybe you can consider depending on your business structure other ways for you to incentivize your past clients and even the sellers. I know that a lot of you are dealing with the same thing, so I wanted to make sure I hopped on here to share that as value and feedback. I’m always happy to hop on here and add feedback for you guys that’s out there reading.
If you are curious about looking into it and finding more information about the marketing channel that everyone knows exists but no one is using and even exploring what that cost looks like, radio’s not as expensive as many people start to believe. We are happy to walk you through what that looks like and how affordable it can be for your actual business.
If you have any questions or you’re looking into it in general, the marketing channel that everyone knows about but no one’s using is radio. I’m the coach of REI Radio 2.0. Feel free to hop over to the website. That’s WholesalingInc.com/Radio. Feel free to book a call. We’re happy to answer any of your questions as well. I will catch you guys on the next episode, where I can share some more value.
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About Grace Mills
Grace Mills is the coach of REI Radio. She has worked side by side with Chris Arnold during the initial program roll out, coaching & fulfilling student needs. For almost 8 years she’s managed and directed all marketing channels and split tested every element of Radio to help investors set up Radio in any market they choose. She has worked with investors & agents all over the United States and has helped many investors make thousands of dollars using Radio.