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If you’re a new agent looking for inexpensive real estate marketing ideas to sell more homes in 2020, you’re in the right place!
Launching a real estate career is expensive. I was so naive when I first became licensed. I had no idea that there were startup expenses beyond the real estate salesperson courses and exams.
I must have looked like a deer in headlights when my broker told me I’d have to pay for annual NAR dues and local board dues as well as lockbox fees and website fees.
I thought I had done the research and knew what I was getting into, but I’d under-budgeted, and here I was shamefully pulling out a credit card to cover my dues.
I had just quit my full-time banking career to launch my real estate business, and I was terrified of moving to a commission-only structure.
My husband, while supportive, was equally terrified, so I had something major to prove. In my first couple of years as a licensed real estate agent, I learned some very affordable marketing techniques that eventually helped me earn $50,000 in my first year as a Realtor® in a new state.
I also learned a few things you should avoid spending money on (at least while you’re getting your feet wet).
Real Estate Marketing Ideas for New Agents
1. Start a Real Estate Blog
This blog, Perfection Hangover, earns me a full-time income (without selling any products or services). When you’re just starting your real estate business, you need to have some income rolling in. As we all know, it can take a few months before you earn that first real estate commission.
You also need to learn how to manage your time effectively. Now that you work for yourself, you’ll need to time-block so that you aren’t twiddling your thumbs all day.
Instead of sitting around waiting for the phone to ring, start by creating a simple blog. You don’t need to have IDX (your local MLS) added to your site just yet. You can add that later if it isn’t in the budget. If your local MLS makes it easy and affordable, however, go ahead and add IDX.
You might even be able to forward calls to your cell phone, allowing you to work around your schedule while running errands. I hated being tied to a desk.
Related: What is IDX and when do you need it?
You can use a free WordPress theme for your real estate blog. You’ll want to start by compiling as much information as you can about your area. You’ll create menus as follows:
- School Districts
- Restrictive Covenants
Take some time and drive out to your local neighborhoods. Take photos of the subdivision entrances and amenities, such as pools and tennis courts. Using featured images you’ve taken yourself, start to create blog posts with information detailing the neighborhoods and/or cities.
Highlight local restaurants and small business owners weekly, and ask them to share within their social media communities.
I promise this is a very inexpensive way to grow your business. And you’re getting involved in the community in the process! It’s a win-win!
As you write more articles with information about your market, you’ll build authority with Google, helping your articles rank. Who do you think people will call when looking for a house? The Realtor® listed on page 2 or 3 of Google?
No! They want to work with one of the first couple of Realtors® listed! It’s so important that you start your blog today so you can rank sooner!
2. Start a YouTube Channel
To take things a step further, you should consider starting a YouTube channel. Did you know that YouTube is the #2 search engine in the world?
It’s also owned by Google, so I’m sure you can understand how important it is to use video in your marketing.
And I’m not talking about posting your company’s generic robo-listing videos. Those are BOR-ING!
Hook a GoPro up to your bicycle or motorcycle and ride through some of the neighborhoods! Show people what a daily commute is like with traffic from one side of town to the other.
Interview local school administrators allowing them to explain the process of enrolling new students in their school.
Showcase open houses before, during, and after they’ve concluded! Go LIVE at local concerts and sporting events so people can get a feel for life in your market.
Remember that YouTube is much like blogging in that you want to create titles and descriptions that are keyword-rich, resulting in higher rankings on Google.
My friend Mike at Stupid Simple SEO offers a free masterclass on the basics of SEO. You should definitely check it out!
3. Volunteer for Floor Duty
I sold my first house within 2 weeks from a walk-in during floor duty. Floor duty is when you opt to take all of the leads (walk-ins and phone calls) for a particular day.
Some agents absolutely hate floor duty and refuse to participate, but sometimes you get lucky.
If you’re smart, you’ll volunteer for floor duty and work on your blog and/or YouTube channel while waiting for leads.
You never know who could call or stop in needing to talk to someone about listing their home or wanting to schedule an appointment to view a home.
Avoid paying for advertising on Zillow or other lead generation websites, like homes.com.
Once you’re established and can afford to throw some money at them, feel free. But when you’re just starting out, you should not go into debt trying to chase leads.
The idea behind starting a blog and YouTube channel is that you can build your audience, creating ads on Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram, which target buyers looking in your area.
I’ve paid as little as $.10 per click to my blog posts on these platforms, and I would recommend it over spending $1,000’s on sketchy Zillow leads.
Have I overwhelmed you? If you’re looking to start a blog, check out this tutorial, where I’ve included a quick video on how to get started.
If you purchase your hosting through my referral link, I’ll even share my 1-hour video blogging crash course, where I teach you the basics of creating blog posts that rank (and where to share once they’ve been written).
I’ve done all the things! Girl, I’ve washed my face. I’ve trashed everything that doesn’t spark joy. I’ve walked the baby steps. I’ve cried. I’ve prayed, but my perfectionism has really held me back.
Perfection Hangover can be crippling. Stop comparing yourself to others and start living your best life! That’s why PH exists! I want to encourage you to take control of your money, your blog, and your business.