The other day while working on selling a restaurant for an owner, I had an epiphany. The owner had been running the restaurant for over 17 years. What used to be a booming business had now whittled down to barely paying the bills. Was there something wrong with the food? No. Had the population decreased at all? No, it had actually grown significantly. Today more than ever, it is a challenge to get someone's time, because more people and businesses are competitive for it. Compounding this situation is the fact that methods that worked 15, 10, 5 and even a year ago may not work today.
This birthed the idea that, "If I can become good at real estate marketing, I can be successful at anything." Ok, I realize it does not sound very flashy or ground breaking, but it is 100% true. Marketing is a skill that we use every day (not necessary well or enough) no matter what the job, profession, or even if you do not have a job. Most of us just do not realize or utilize it. Is your real estate business struggling? Well, I would suggest that you take a look under the hood at your real estate marketing plan. Of course you must have a marketing plan! If a business has a solid marketing plan and they put that plan into action, they can begin to correct negative trends. If the business is doing well; a good plan, executed properly, will make it a fantastic and super successful business.
Most business owners unwittingly ruin their business through negligful or non-existing marketing. Trust me, I know. We have heard the saying, "An ounce of prevention is worth more than a pound of cure." In the real estate business or any business for that matter, it is easier and more cost effective to avoid a problem in the first place. If that opportunity was lost, then the next best thing is to "nip the problem in the bud." Small corrective measures, made early, will bear more fruit than major surgery when business problems become critical. This is the necessary purpose of a real estate marketing plan. Businesses, because they are networks of human interactions – seem to have a natural "momentum." Crowds attract crowds. A business with positive momentum grows organically because of the positive interactions of its staff and customers. The opposite is true on the down side. Negative momentum feeds off itself and a business organically contracts. Once the move downwards gains enough critical force, it is potentially impossible to save that business and restore it to its glory days. Should that restaurant have been able to keep its initial success over the years? Yes, it should have – through the process of marketing.
It all sounds good in theory; now I am taking the steps to turn it into reality and you should too. Where do you start? The foundational "must read" book that Danny Welsh (a respected marketer) recommends is, "Influence" by Robert Caldini. I am in hot pursuit of reading this and also working on compiling a swipe file. If you do not know what a swipe file is; it's a compilation of ads or any type of marketing pieces that catch your eyes. You clip, copy or paste it some where safe for future reference. When you need help with a marketing piece, you can look into your little treasure chest for a piece that will work well for that situation. It can be completely unrelated to the type of business you're in but should be adaptable to convey your ideas. I have a long journey ahead and I will keep updating everyone on it. Stay tuned. Do not be afraid to be creative with your real estate marketing. Make sure your material "Stands Out."