Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Lisa Gray

Lisa Gray
243 POSTS 0 COMMENTS
Lisa is an accomplished marketer with years of expertise in direct response marketing, digital marketing, data analytics and business development working with both B2C and B2B.

    The world has changed. Whether we will ever return to pre-pandemic life remains to be seen. Take summer for instance.

    Most summers, retailers consistently see an increase in consumer interest in ice cream makers, summer dresses and beer pong.

    Summer 2020’s shopping list, on the other hand, features none of the items we longed for in the past. Roller skates, inflatable pools and sidewalk chalk are in such demand right now that even Walmart can’t keep up the supply.

    We think it’s safe to say that consumers, even those actively thinking about buying or selling a home, aren’t thinking about real estate agents. They’re far too distracted.

    This is why it’s critical that you become proactive and remind them (especially past clients and your SOI) that you are a real estate agent. By reaching out to them you will also remind them that they know, like and trust you.

    Don’t allow anyone you know to do a real estate transaction like those interviewed by NAR every year (working with the first agent they speak with).

    We’ve rounded up some tips from other agents as to how they’re keeping top-of-mind with those in their CRM.

    Kick hyper-local marketing to the curb

    Hyper-local isn’t enough right now. Zoom in to make your marketing hyper-hyper local. Choose a highly specific geographic area around your target’s home using the Map My Mail tool. This may mean that you’re targeting just a few streets, or blocks for each campaign.

    If you currently farm, this one will be easy for you. Choose a neighborhood in which a former client or anyone in your sphere lives and start your hyper-hyper local marketing direct mail blitz there.

    Also, consider holding a neighborhood event. To comply with COVID-19 safety measures, hold it outdoors and encourage social distancing. A picnic or barbecue would lure house-bound families to their neighborhood park.

    Another idea that agents use is a movie in the park. Social distancing should be easy with this one.

    Downsizing: Too Much Home, Life Event Series
    Start a campaign

    With so many people still housebound, the internet serves as a lifeline. Seniors, especially, are turning to social media to keep up with friends and family.

    Before you poo-poo the seniors, understand that the baby boomer niche is the largest seller demographic. The 2020 NAR Generational Trends survey finds that 45% of the seller pool is made up of older Americans, born between 1946 and 1964.

    During the lockdown, those seniors living away from their children and grandchildren were awash in loneliness, especially those without a spouse or partner. Look for them to decide to sell to move closer to their loved ones.

    Although you can target your Facebook campaign to any group (we aren’t talking ads here, but your business page and engagement on others’ pages), we think starting with boomers might just get you the most success.

    If you’ve set up your CRM with demographic tags, finding your targets will be easy. If not, combing through all those names could become tedious. Hire someone at Fiverr.com or Upwork.com to do it for you.

    Then, get busy finding these people on Facebook, post items of interest to them (especially if this content leads back to the blog on your website), and engage on their pages frequently. Keeping your name in front of them is critical. Consider adding a targeted baby boomer direct mail campaign.

    COVID Series Comfort Recipe Postcards
    Pick up the phone and call your Sphere

    Go through your CRM and pick out past clients and those in your SOI who you’ve been in touch with over the past year and give them a call.

    The call serves several purposes:

    • It’s a personal touch – and those are always memorable
    • It’s a reminder that they know a real estate agent (just in case someone asks!)
    • Ask the right questions and you’ll be able to fill in missing information in their CRM file
    • Subtly remind them that home values haven’t decreased, as many Americans are assuming
    What will you say?

    Ask how they are faring during the pandemic. If they have a family, inquire about their well-being.

    If asked about the current market, explain it without sounding salesy.

    Most of all, listen.

    Finally, follow up the call a week later with a hand-written note on a notecard sent via the mail.

    Year after year, the NAR’s surveys say that although buyers and sellers claim they will use their agent in the future, yet most of them don’t.

    In fact, 75% of buyers and an equal number of sellers choose the first agent they contact to assist in the purchase or sale of a home.

    Don’t assume that because you worked with a client in the past, they will remember you years from now. They won’t unless you keep in touch consistently.

    COVID Series At Home Postcard
    Send the Gardening Fun postcard from the CVID: AT Home Series to your Sphere of Influence.

    Need help targeting a specific niche of buyers or sellers? Use our Demographic Search Tool to create the ideal list (it’s easy). Or call our support team for assistance at 866.405.3638!

    PLUS: When you have time…here are some helpful resources we’ve made available to support your success.

    1. The Free Real Estate Mailing List Guide

    This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Real-Estate-Mailing-List-Guide2-3-D-999x1024.jpg

    The Real Estate Mailing List Guide outlines the top tools for generating targeted prospecting lists including Baby Boomers, Empty Nesters, Investors, Lifestyle Interests, High-Income Renters, Move-Up Markets, and more. The Guide also defines done-for-you marketing campaigns to match these markets. –Click Here

    2. The Free 12 Month Done-For-You Strategic Marketing Plan

    This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 2020-Planner-3D-999x1024.jpg

    The Real Estate Marketing Planner is a powerful 12-Month-Guide that strategically defines what marketing to do when. Four key market segments are included, Niche Marketing, Get More Listings, Geographic Farming, and Sphere of Influence. –Click Here

    3. The Free One-Page Real Estate Business Plan

    This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Business-Plan-3D-Book-New1-270x300.png

    Treat your business like a business it is vital to long-term success in this industry. Some agents may put together elaborate business plans, yet there’s something powerful about keeping it simple. Check out our one page Online Real Estate Business Plan.  – Click Here

    4. Become a Listing Legend Free eBook 

    This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Become-A-Listing-Legend-3D-Book-White-274x300.jpg

    Ready to take a vertical leap in your real estate career? If you’re looking for inspiration…and the tools and methods to dominate a market and go to the top in real estate…you’ll find them in this free book. – Click Here

    5. The Market Dominator

    Become branded in a specific neighborhood with a 12X15 marketing piece sent automatically each month to an exclusive carrier route. Watch this video to learn more or Click Here.

    6. The Free Online ROI Calculator

    This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is ROI-calculator-b-233x300.jpg

    Consistency and automation are the keys to success. Discover how effective direct mail marketing can dramatically increase your bottom line. Enter your statistics in our Free online ROI Calculator and click the ‘CALCULATE MY ROI’ button to see your results instantly! –Click Here

    7. The Free Real Estate Marketing Guide “CRUSH IT” 

    This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is CRUSH-IT-Guide-3-d-298x300.jpg

    The “Crush It” Guide includes easy steps to launching an effective direct mail marketing campaign, how to create a targeted prospect list, the perfect way to layout marketing materials for success, seven opportunities available to target in your area right now. –Click Here

      “Pivot.” I’m reading that word a lot lately. The “experts” are admonishing business owners to pivot, to adapt to the “new normal.” It’s an especially popular theme in real estate right now.

      Seems to me that most real estate professionals adapted very quickly. You had to, right? It was either adapt or perish. In fact, the average agent could probably give lessons on pivoting.

      The poor real estate consumer, however, has been left behind. So, just as you pick up slack for lenders when explaining the mortgage process to buyers, it’s now up to you to bring buyers and sellers up to speed on what’s changed and what they might expect from America’s “new” real estate industry.

      Let’s start with your listing clients and listing prospects.

      Post Pandemic Series
      How has the selling process changed?

      Aside from local market conditions, this is most likely every prospective home seller’s most burning question. After all, much of what they’ll learn online no longer applies.

      Ensure that all of your listing leads are aware of and comfortable with the changes. Don’t let them delay their sale because they’re nervous or confused.

      The listing presentation is the ideal time to walk them through the process. Make it sound as simple as possible.

      Sure, they’re still curious how you’ll go about marketing their home, but how will they and their family be kept safe after showings? What precautions will buyers’ agents take?

      Will you hold open houses? If so, how will those work without exposing both the buyers and the seller to the virus?

      Stage it to sell for top dollar

      While the process of preparing the home for the market remains pretty much the same, staging is not.

      Hunkered down for months in their homes while they took on new hobbies and spent more time with family has caused a shift in what homebuyers are seeking in a home. Suggest to your sellers that they stage a spare room, study, finished attic or basement as a home office or gym.

      Outdoor spaces are more critical aspects of home sales post-lockdown. Sales of inflatable pools, inground pools, patio furniture and décor and even trampolines have spiked.

      One of the most popular backyard amenities is a large garden, or the space to create one. “Gardening supplies and egg-laying chickens are becoming hard to find as people search for both new hobbies and reliable alternatives to bare grocery shelves,” according to Hillary George-Parkin at Vox.com.

      “Anything that keeps kids entertained — and offers parents a chance to take Zoom calls in peace — is, predictably, flying off the shelves,” George-Parkin adds.

      Let your listing clients know this. Help them come up with ideas to stage their backyards for maximum appeal:

      • Kid-friendly space
      • Gardener’s dream space
      • Activity center

      Create a kid-friendly space with a croquet set on the lawn, a swing set and slide, treehouse, trampoline hangout (see photo number 17 at HGTV.com), sandbox or any number of other things that will appeal to parents of young children.

      Post Pandemic Series
      There are many ways to stage a backyard to pique a gardener’s interest, including:
      • Building attractive raised beds
      • Adding trellises along the wall
      • Create a potting bench
      • Adding gardening beds in lieu of raised beds

      Even if you have limited space in the backyard, or just a patio or deck, potted plants and planter boxes will create appeal for the green thumber.

      Swimming pools also gained in popularity during the lockdown. It’s a worldwide phenomenon, with manufacturers in Spain claiming that sales have increased 400%. In New Zealand, searches for homes with swimming pools have increased 70% and manufacturers and retailers claim that sales have tripled since before the pandemic.

      If your client’s home features a swimming pool, of course you’ll want to hit that fact hard when marketing, but encourage your client to stage the pool area to wow buyers even more.

      For those leads and prospects who are dragging their feet (meaning there is no listing appointment), start an education campaign on your blog and share your posts on social media. Back them up with a direct mail piece that updates them on real estate news.

      Sellers have questions and you have the answers. Walk them through all the processes and how they’ve changed, from home inspections to appraisals to closing and staging.

      Post Pandemic Series
      Send the Home Values postcard from the Post Pandemic Series to an area where you’re focusing on more listings.

      Need help targeting a specific niche of buyers or sellers? Use our Demographic Search Tool to create the ideal list (it’s easy). Or call our support team for assistance at 866.405.3638!

      PLUS: When you have time…here are some helpful resources we’ve made available to support your success.

      1. The Free Real Estate Mailing List Guide

      This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Real-Estate-Mailing-List-Guide2-3-D-999x1024.jpg

      The Real Estate Mailing List Guide outlines the top tools for generating targeted prospecting lists including Baby Boomers, Empty Nesters, Investors, Lifestyle Interests, High-Income Renters, Move-Up Markets, and more. The Guide also defines done-for-you marketing campaigns to match these markets. –Click Here

      2. The Free 12 Month Done-For-You Strategic Marketing Plan

      This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 2020-Planner-3D-999x1024.jpg

      The Real Estate Marketing Planner is a powerful 12-Month-Guide that strategically defines what marketing to do when. Four key market segments are included, Niche Marketing, Get More Listings, Geographic Farming, and Sphere of Influence. –Click Here

      3. The Free One-Page Real Estate Business Plan

      This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Business-Plan-3D-Book-New1-270x300.png

      Treat your business like a business it is vital to long-term success in this industry. Some agents may put together elaborate business plans, yet there’s something powerful about keeping it simple. Check out our one page Online Real Estate Business Plan.  – Click Here

      4. Become a Listing Legend Free eBook 

      This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Become-A-Listing-Legend-3D-Book-White-274x300.jpg

      Ready to take a vertical leap in your real estate career? If you’re looking for inspiration…and the tools and methods to dominate a market and go to the top in real estate…you’ll find them in this free book. – Click Here

      5. The Market Dominator Branding System

      Become branded in a specific neighborhood with a Mega AMrketing piece sent automatically each month to an exclusive carrier route. Watch this excerpt on the Market Dominator from a recent Q&A Todd Robertson (Director of the Market Dominator) did below.

      For additional questions, you can reach Todd at 866-405-3638 or Todd.Robertson@prospectsplus.com or go to Market Dominator for more information.

      6. The Free Online ROI Calculator

      This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is ROI-calculator-b-233x300.jpg

      Consistency and automation are the keys to success. Discover how effective direct mail marketing can dramatically increase your bottom line. Enter your statistics in our Free online ROI Calculator and click the ‘CALCULATE MY ROI’ button to see your results instantly! –Click Here

      7. The Free Real Estate Marketing Guide “CRUSH IT” 

      This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is CRUSH-IT-Guide-3-d-298x300.jpg

      The “Crush It” Guide includes easy steps to launching an effective direct mail marketing campaign, how to create a targeted prospect list, the perfect way to layout marketing materials for success, seven opportunities available to target in your area right now. –Click Here

        If you’re not familiar with the Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America (NACA) and their homebuying program, you should probably remedy that.

        With lenders instituting “… the toughest loan-approval standards in years,” according to Joe Light at Bloomberg.com, many buyers who are on the margins may be seeking the organization’s help.

        There are a few twists and turns in the NACA mortgage transaction that both buyer and seller agents need to know about.

        First, some background

        NACA is not a lender, but a “non-profit, community advocacy and homeownership organization,” according to the NACA website. The group’s focus is low-to-moderate income homebuyers who are registered to vote.

        The organization is certified by HUD to meet its goal of helping to provide affordable homeownership, with the same terms for all of its members.

        Self-titled “America’s Best Mortgage Program,” NACA’s terms include providing loans with:

        • No down payment or closing costs
        • No fees, no points
        • Rates are fixed and below market
        • Credit score isn’t taken into consideration
        Low Net Worth postcard from Rent By Number Series

        To get the mortgage, the buyer must join NACA by paying a $25 membership fee (payable every year, and agreeing to take part in “. . . five actions and activities a year and at least one prior to NACA Qualification and one prior to closing …”

        Sounds great, doesn’t it?

        And, it is, and will be for the buyers on the fringe of qualification who may be locked out of the market by the new, more-stringent loan qualification standards.

        For agents and home sellers, however, it’s a whole different story. Many that we’ve spoken with call the program’s transactions “nightmares.”

        One listing agent said that her seller almost removed her listing because of the challenges she was forced to endure and the long (very long) escrow period.

        The agent’s part in the process

        First, you should know that NACA has its own roster of buyers’ agents and they strongly encourage their members to use them.

        Because these agents have experience with the process, they do have a lot to offer the buyer. But if your buyer decides that a NACA mortgage is the only way to “achieve the dream,” you’ll need to protect your interests.

        Get a signed buyer’s broker agreement before your client attends the first workshop.

        And, don’t bother recommending your favorite home inspector because buyers are required to use “… a licensed home inspector who either is or will be registered with NACA and agrees to use the HomeGauge software,” according to the organization’s website.

        Although the organization claims to close most loans in 28 days, we’ve heard from several agents who experienced repeated requests for contract extensions and two said the deals took five months to close.

        Cost of Renting postcard from Rent By Number Series

        NACA also specifies that buyers demand the removal of the following from the purchase agreement:

        • Forfeiture of earnest money if the buyer can’t qualify for the loan or the home doesn’t appraise.
        • Penalties for not closing on time

        The contract must include:

        • A contingency that the home is approved by NACA-approved home and pest inspectors
        • A closing date of at least 30 days, longer if the home requires work
        • Settlement services must be provided by an approved NACA settlement agent

        Ok, suppose you are working with a new buyer who tells you he or she will be applying for the NACA mortgage. The most important next question is “Have you been in touch with anyone from NACA?”

        And here is why this question should be first:

        If the buyer “has been involved with or been in previous contact with NACA at the time the Member [your potential buying client] is referred to the Program, you will not be able to register them to your name,” according to NACA’s website.

        The organization has a whole slew of rules for outside agents who bring in buyers and you can catch up with those at nacalynx.com.

        Or, you could become a NACA-approved agent

        The organization is actively seeking real estate agents, nationwide, so if you’re looking for an additional source of leads, you may want to look into it.

        Get the details online at workforcenow.adp.com.

        Rent Race postcard from Rent By Number Series
        Send the Rent Race postcard from the Rent By Numbers Series to a Renter Prospect List in your area or near your Farm.  

        Need help targeting renters? Use our Demographic Search Tool to create the ideal list (it’s easy) or call our support team for assistance at 866.405.3638!

        PLUS: When you have time…here are some helpful resources we’ve made available to support your success.

        1. The Free Real Estate Mailing List Guide

        This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Real-Estate-Mailing-List-Guide2-3-D-999x1024.jpg

        The Real Estate Mailing List Guide outlines the top tools for generating targeted prospecting lists including Baby Boomers, Empty Nesters, Investors, Lifestyle Interests, High-Income Renters, Move-Up Markets, and more. The Guide also defines done-for-you marketing campaigns to match these markets. –Click Here

        2. The Free 12 Month Done-For-You Strategic Marketing Plan

        This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 2020-Planner-3D-999x1024.jpg

        The Real Estate Marketing Planner is a powerful 12-Month-Guide that strategically defines what marketing to do when. Four key market segments are included, Niche Marketing, Get More Listings, Geographic Farming, and Sphere of Influence. –Click Here

        3. The Free One-Page Real Estate Business Plan

        This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Business-Plan-3D-Book-New1-270x300.png

        Treat your business like a business it is vital to long-term success in this industry. Some agents may put together elaborate business plans, yet there’s something powerful about keeping it simple. Check out our one page Online Real Estate Business Plan.  – Click Here

        4. Become a Listing Legend Free eBook 

        This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Become-A-Listing-Legend-3D-Book-White-274x300.jpg

        Ready to take a vertical leap in your real estate career? If you’re looking for inspiration…and the tools and methods to dominate a market and go to the top in real estate…you’ll find them in this free book. – Click Here

        5. The Market Dominator Branding System

        Become branded in a specific neighborhood with a mega-marketing piece sent automatically each month to an exclusive carrier route. (Watch this video on the Market Dominator, below). For more information Click Here.

        6. The Free Online ROI Calculator

        This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is ROI-calculator-b-233x300.jpg

        Consistency and automation are the keys to success. Discover how effective direct mail marketing can dramatically increase your bottom line. Enter your statistics in our Free online ROI Calculator and click the ‘CALCULATE MY ROI’ button to see your results instantly! –Click Here

        7. The Free Real Estate Marketing Guide “CRUSH IT” 

        This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is CRUSH-IT-Guide-3-d-298x300.jpg

        The “Crush It” Guide includes easy steps to launching an effective direct mail marketing campaign, how to create a targeted prospect list, the perfect way to layout marketing materials for success, seven opportunities available to target in your area right now. –Click Here

          I recently spent some time talking to Todd Robertson, Director of the Market Dominator, about how agents are relying on their farms even more to keep business going during the pandemic. Todd shared some new and exciting things he’s doing to help agents level up and go from farmer to market maker.

          Farming a geographic area is a time-tested, proven method for achieving new listings and referrals. Yet Todd says for many agents insecurities over what to send, how often to send it, and how to budget stops them from taking advantage of this real estate game-changer.

          Those who understand the power of farming forge ahead putting systems in place, cultivating and developing lucrative relationships over time.

          This results in branded awareness that keeps their name at the forefront when someone is ready to buy or sell or knows someone who is and it’s that agent who receives the call.

          “These agents understand the key to successful farming is consistent marketing that allows them to stand out from the pack,” says Todd.

          “I believe this is why the Market Dominator is such a popular marketing tool for agents. It’s a content-rich marketing piece, automatically sent every month, that’s literally larger-than-life”.

          “And, I’m not kidding when I say larger-than-life,” Todd exclaimed, “At 12×15 in size, the Market Dominator is the largest legal size allowed by USPS. It’s a mailbox show stopper that can’t be ignored”.

          That combined with content designed by industry professionals, the use of budget-friendly EDDM, and carrier route exclusivity is what Todd says makes the Dominator an agent favorite.

          The leap from Farmer to Market Maker

          Although the Market Dominator has been incredibly well received by agents, Todd said the current climate got him thinking it was time to do more.

          With certain parts of the country just opening up again, it left many agents with only six months of 2020 to hit their annual goals. Todd said this knowledge caused him to go back to the drawing board to come up with a way to help agents level up during this remaining time.

          And he found an answer. He decided to help agents go from successful farmer to market makers.

          Instead of them following the traditional agent path of matching buyers and sellers, listing by listing, Todd’s helping them find a way to truly control their market and explode their growth.

          He says they’ve added a new valuable resource to the Market Dominator by providing agents with a Renter Prospect List from within or around their carrier route (at no cost to the agent).

          And, they’re also going to pay for the first campaign out to this renter prospect list using postcards from the Rent By Numbers Series.

          “Offering this additional tool is the ultimate progression for an agent who wants to truly begin to control their market,” says Todd.

          Now they’re starting to cultivate relationships with some of the very people who will be interested in buying homes in their carrier route.

          “Imagine how your listing appointment will go when you show an area map of potential buyers you’ve been communicating with to the homeowners,” says Todd.

          “How powerful is that?” Todd continued, “Regardless of who else is competing for this listing, they can’t win. You’ve shown up with potential buyers in hand”.

          Telling a homeowner you’ve already been looking for their home’s buyer for months is a strong statement. Especially considering there’s a high probability that their home’s buyer is on this list.

          While other agents are discussing what they’ll do to find a buyer once the listing agreement is signed, todd says you stand alone because you’ve already done the work.

          To learn more about the Market Dominator, watch this excerpt from a recent Q&A Todd did below.

          For additional questions, you can reach Todd at 866-405-3638 or Todd.Robertson@prospectsplus.com or go to Market Dominator for more information. To download Todd’s book, “Become a Listing Legend”, scroll down it’s available under Free Resources, below.

          If you’re interested in generating your own Renter Prospect List to market to in your Farm click here from a desktop computer to get started or watch the video below to learn how.

          PLUS: When you have time…here are some Free resources we’ve made available to support your success.

          1. The Free Real Estate Mailing List Guide

          This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Real-Estate-Mailing-List-Guide2-3-D-999x1024.jpg

          The Real Estate Mailing List Guide outlines the top tools for generating targeted prospecting lists including Baby Boomers, Empty Nesters, Investors, Lifestyle Interests, High-Income Renters, Move-Up Markets, and more. The Guide also defines done-for-you marketing campaigns to match these markets. –Click Here

          2. The 12 Month Done-For-You Strategic Marketing Plan

          This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 2020-Planner-3D-999x1024.jpg

          The Real Estate Marketing Planner is a powerful 12-Month-Guide that strategically defines what marketing to do when. Four key market segments are included, Niche Marketing, Get More Listings, Geographic Farming, and Sphere of Influence. –Click Here

          3. The Free One-Page Real Estate Business Plan

          This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Business-Plan-3D-Book-New1-270x300.png

          Treat your business like a business it is vital to long-term success in this industry. Some agents may put together elaborate business plans, yet there’s something powerful about keeping it simple. Check out our one page Online Real Estate Business Plan.  – Click Here

          4. Become a Listing Legend Free eBook 

          This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Become-A-Listing-Legend-3D-Book-White-274x300.jpg

          Ready to take a vertical leap in your real estate career? If you’re looking for inspiration…and the tools and methods to dominate a market and go to the top in real estate…you’ll find them in this free book. – Click Here

          5. The Free Online ROI Calculator

          This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is ROI-calculator-b-233x300.jpg

          Consistency and automation are the keys to success. Discover how effective direct mail marketing can dramatically increase your bottom line. Enter your statistics in our Free online ROI Calculator and click the ‘CALCULATE MY ROI’ button to see your results instantly! –Click Here

          6. The Real Estate Marketing Guide “CRUSH IT” 

          This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is CRUSH-IT-Guide-3-d-298x300.jpg

          The “Crush It” Guide includes easy steps to launching an effective direct mail marketing campaign, how to create a targeted prospect list, the perfect way to layout marketing materials for success, seven opportunities available to target in your area right now. –Click Here