You Passed Your Real Estate Exam – Now What? Part II
Last week we went over what first steps you should pursue after passing your real estate exam. For Part II of the series let’s assume you’ve selected a broker that has the values and culture you’re looking for, have a mentor, and that you’ve fine-tuned your budget. What’s next?
Real estate is not as easy as it looks. Making it through the exam to get your license is the easiest part. The next questions to ask yourself are how are you going to get clients and what type of client do you want to attract? It’s important to note that this is a two-part question. Take time to sit down and really think about who you are and what you want your brand to be. Do not be a jack of all trades and master of none. You can’t be everything to everyone and that means deciding on what type of client you want to market too. Maybe it’s military clients, relocation, or first-time buyers. Maybe you have a specific neighborhood you want to focus on. There are a lot of directions this can go in and that’s why it’s important to first look at yourself to then determine your branding.
Once you’ve determined your brand and who it targets you’ll need to create marketing material. Business cards being the first piece. Yes, they’re basic in terms of marketing avenues but, as a new agent, you’re going to want to hand one out to everyone you meet and be reaching out to your sphere to share that you’re now in real estate. Whatever you do, do not be a secret agent. Review your budget to determine how much you can spend on marketing material and then let that amount guide you on what pieces to create. Maybe you don’t have a lot of money to start out, you can easily create a market snapshot of a neighborhood you want to focus on and take that with you to go door knock. Maybe door knocking isn’t your thing. You could plan a mixer for your sphere, have it in your home to keep costs down and serve appetizers and refreshments. Again, the marketing goes back to knowing who you are, what your strengths are, and what clients you want to attract.
While you’re working on developing your marketing you’ll also need to be studying the market. Know what the latest trends are, what inventory levels look like, and learn the different neighborhoods in the area you want to serve. Studying the market is something you need to do for your entire real estate career. Become a walking talking local real estate encyclopedia. This prepares you to be able to share the market trends with anyone you come in contact with. You’re going to get the “how’s the market” question a lot. Be prepared to standout by knowing the figures and trends off the top of your head.
Last but, certainly not least remember that you are running your own business. Flexibility is touted over and over again but, the reality is it’s not as flexible as you might have been told. You will not be successful if you don’t commit to running your business. No one is going to tell you what to do every day or even tell you to show up. You get out what you put in and if you aren’t giving it your all day in and day out you’re going to struggle. Real estate is non-stop and it requires giving everything you have to become successful. You might not have the experience yet but, you can always be the hardest working person in the room!