Out of all the real estate agents in the strong markets of Florida, what are you doing to distinguish yourself from the masses? Listing appointments, a common practice of the real estate agent, doesn’t have to be monotonous. Here are a few ways to help you stand out and ensure a closed deal during your next listing presentation.

Treat it Like a Job Interview
Because it is a job interview. Put your ego aside and come ready to present yourself truthfully and genuinely as the best person for this position – to help your client sell a house – and why. Don’t be afraid to talk about your achievements alongside of your responsibilities as their REALTOR®. And always be honest. Writer Kevin Hoover also mentions the importance of being truthful in an Inman article from January 2019.

“The point of the listing presentation is to gain trust,” Hoover said. “It would be counterproductive to include exaggerations or discrepancies from the truth.”  

Finally, leave a physical copy of your resume along with your picture for them to remember you by.

Come Prepared
Whatever materials or resources you help ease a seller’s concerns or questions about the process, bring it. Fill a folder with simple checklists and articles to aid in their understanding of how the process is going to look. You don’t have to go over everything in the meeting as you don’t want it to be an overload of information. Let your clients take the folder home and use for future reference. And, of course, include your branding and contact information so that they can reach you when they’re ready to list.  

Take Notes
One of the most important characteristics of a great real estate agent is attention to detail. However, no one person can remember everything. Taking notes is crucial at the listing appointment.

“If you go into the presentation believing that you will earn the client, which you should, you will need to remember the details of the conversation if you want to maintain your level of professionalism,” Hoover stated. “The best way to do that is to take notes.”

Before you begin writing, be sure to ask for permission. You want to ensure that your potential clients are aware and comfortable with their words being recorded. Most people will say yes, however, it’s important to build that trust, especially on the first meeting. Also, use a physical notepad and pen, rather than typing on your laptop or cell phone. While using your laptop or cell phone isn’t necessarily wrong, you may come across as closed-off and disengaged.

When you come back around at the end of the transaction and refer to something they said in your listing presentation, your clients won’t be able to hide their gratitude for your memory.

Get to Know Your Clients
In accordance with taking notes is getting to know your clients. You want to ask them detailed and specific questions about their likes, dislikes, family, and what they’re looking for in a real estate agent. Write down their answers. If the deal is sealed, so to speak, ask for their birthday, anniversary, and kids’ birthdays in order to stay in touch with them throughout the year and long after their house is sold.

Express Your Gratitude
As they say, a hand-written card goes a long way. A day or two after the meeting, be sure to write a card thanking them for their time and attention. Mention something in the card that was specific to your conversation. Not only will it remind them a few days later of your services, it adds the perfect professional touch and will showcase your attention to detail.

There are other ways to say thank you besides just a card. You can include a gift card, a branded item such as a pen or keychain, or anything else that will help the client remember you.

All of us at First International Title desire to see our real estate partners succeed, which is why we have many resources and flyers to help real estate agents and loan officers with their business. Reach out to your local sales executive to gain access to our many tools available for you to stand out in your market!

Some REALTORS® view them as a necessary evil; others view them as an added benefit to the job and are excited when the time rolls around. We’re talking about Client Pop-Bys! Creative pop-bys are a fun way to help agents stand out from others.

Not only is it a helpful way for real estate agents to make a touch or get in front of their clients, but, if planned correctly, can help an agent stay in front of those ‘referral partners’ all year long. However, not everyone excels in this area of marketing. Here are our top 7 tips for becoming a Pop-By Pro!

1. Create a Schedule
The agent should plan ahead by scheduling the whole year in advance for what pop-bys to do. Being consistent is the best way to get started and feel more prepared. Adding to the calendar the exact day to pass out the pop-bys will make it feel less overwhelming.

Don’t schedule too many pop-bys or it may be difficult to keep up. Smaller, quarterly pop-bys usually work out well. However, maybe the REALTOR® wants to go all out during Christmas time with a gift basket once per year. Maybe the REALTOR® only wants to focus on sports schedules. The ideas are endless!

2. Holidays and Seasons
Planning pop-bys in sync with holidays or seasons are the easiest way to stay on schedule and come up with ideas. For example, if doing quarterly season pop-bys…
-Spring: Your referrals make my business bloom! (With packages of flower seeds)
-Summer: Have a KOOL summer. (With packages of Kool-Aid)
-Fall: Bringing You Warm Wishes this Autumn Season (With a candle)
-Winter: The real estate market is warming up. Take comfort that you have a pro in your corner. (With a mug or bag of hot chocolate).

If focusing on holidays to schedule…
-March/St. Patrick’s Day: I’m LUCKY to have worked with you. (With gold Rolo candies)
-July/Independence Day: Have a BRIGHT Fourth of July! (With sparklers)
-October/Halloween: Don’t be stuck in the dark about the Real Estate Market. (With mini flashlights)
-December/Christmas: Wishing You a ‘Lotto’ Holiday Cheer! (With lottery tickets)

3. ALWAYS Incorporate Your Brand
Top real estate agents never let their current or potential customers forget who they are and what they do. The reason for pop-bys is to further the agent’s brand and stay in front of that audience. The easiest way to do this is include the REALTOR’s® logo and/or business card every single time without fail.

4. Do Something Different Each Time
Pop-bys can lose their pizzazz if the same bag of candy is given time and time again. Agents should do a different pop-by gift every single time, every single year. Come up with new and fresh ideas. Stay up to date on what’s popular on social media, especially with tech products. For example, one year fidget spinners were a huge hit. The next year? Not so much.

The only exception to this is if a REALTOR® becomes known for doing the same gift basket every Christmas or the same Football schedule every season. This can be useful as clients will come to expect the pop-by and look forward to receiving it.

5. Consider Utilizing Something More Permanent
If an agent’s budget is tight, s/he may need to rely on something tangible that lasts a long time. A good example of this is magnets. Wine and cheese pairings, recipes, sports schedules, or yearly calendars in the form of refrigerator magnets can be a great way to stay in front of an audience with the least amount of effort and money.

6. Incorporate a Unique Touch
If an agent has a talented hobby on the side, it would be a brilliant way of standing out. Maybe that hobby is baking, jewelry making, sewing, wood carving, etc. Whatever that special flare is, REALTORS® should incorporate that into their pop-bys. Home baked cookies have much more of a special touch to clients than store bought. Homemade says, “I care about you as an individual and want to earn your referrals.”

7. Get Creative!
Don’t do what every other REALTOR® does. At a loss for ideas? Google and Pinterest are the real estate agent’s best friends! There are countless DIY ideas online for creating simple, but impactful, pop-bys for current and potential clients. If the agent can’t choose between two similar ideas – they can be combined! There are countless opportunities and each season can be approached as a fresh start to try a new pop-by.

Questions? Comments? Reach out to your First International Title rep today!

Even though the holidays have passed and it’s time to take down the Christmas tree and lights, there are still so many ways to decorate your home for the winter months ahead. Don’t let go of that decorating energy just because Christmas has passed. You can still make your home feel warm and cozy after the holidays are over! Here are some winter decorating tips to get your creative juices flowing to carry you through the cold months.

Winterize Your Wreath
Wreaths are a beautiful and appropriate decoration any time of the year! Switch out your bright, holiday wreath with something a little more bare. You can use bare branches or birch with some snowy trees, or a simple wreath with a few winter flowers.

All About that Pine
Both pine needles and branches paired with pinecones can be a beautiful way to decorate your fireplace mantle or create a new table centerpiece. Pair these with some white pillar candles and you have the perfect balance of winter-cozy. Wrap your candle with sweater cloth to make it feel extra warm!

Cold Weather Colors
Even though it may be time to ditch the red and green, you can simply switch out those colors for a royal blue or purple. Use accents such as dinner napkins, frames, candle sticks, and pillows. This adds the perfect pop of color to your home to get you through the dark and cold winter months.

Use Greenery Instead of Fresh Flowers
Fill metal or white vases with greenery to complete a winter look. You can place these on your tables, mantle, bookshelves, or any open space for décor.

Use Fun Patterns
Mix and match different patterns like checkers and plaid in your living room or bedrooms to create a fun but winter-neutral look. However, some patterns may not work together and all homes are different, so play around with it or do some research for what would look best in your house.

Pair Wood with Bare Branches
Instead of using greenery in your vases, try some bare branches or birch. This would pair well with homes that have a lot of wood accents!

Give Your Pillows a Makeover
This ties into our section about cold weather colors. Exchange out your red or green blankets and pillows with some more neutral colors to match the cold weather outside. Light brown, white, gray or light blue would look really nice and give that cozy feel like everyone wants during winter time.

Add Some Aromatherapy
Grab some winter-scented candles next time you’re at the grocery store. Scents that have musky, sweet, and fresh undertones like amber, rose, lemon, fig, or vanilla gives off a warm and comforting feeling that many people crave during the winter months. You can also use your diffuser with essential oils of the same scents.

Questions? Comments? Reach out to your First International Title rep today!