By Michelle Flaherty
Now that we’re on to day two of the REALTORS® Conference & Expo, and my mind and body are beginning to adjust to west coast time, the pieces of information that I will bring back home with me are becoming much more clear.
First, it is becoming abundantly clear that I need an iPad. Every class I’ve attended so far has opened my eyes to at least one new tip, trick, or app to enrich my clients’ experience and make my job easier and more fun. Nobu Hata (2012 chair of the YPN Subcommittee) in the “follow me” class made a point to say it was THE single tool that agents need to have to improve their businesses. And when it came time to write this blog post, I’m embarrassed to say that I had to ask my MOM to borrow hers so I wouldn’t have to go get my laptop in the hotel room. Yes, I’m embarrassed to say that the Gen-Y is the technology dinosaur in this family real estate team.
Second, in a world full of social media and advertising noise, people in the community appreciate when you recognize or mention an ad they placed in the newspaper, an award they received, or an accomplishment that earned them a place in the news. Both the “marketing without money” and “selling luxury property” class instructors suggested clipping articles and reaching out to people personally when their names or businesses are in the news (assuming the story is positive). A great reminder that real estate is and will always be a business built around real relationships.
Third, professional presentations are critical. Whether delivered through PowerPoint, your iPad, or professionally bound on glossy stock, listing and new home buyer presentations are trending toward a multimedia experience that is respectful of the high dollar transaction these potential clients are entering into with you as their guide. Same goes for your website. The more people get used to experiencing great looking media in other aspects of life, the less they will tolerate materials, presentations, or sites that look sloppy or homemade as part of their real estate experience.
Finally, I am hearing one message above all the rest: I need to write. Not only is written content what drives traffic to your website, but it’s also what gets people to trust you before they ever even meet you. Real estate experts who can articulate their messages clearly to the public can cut through the noise that their competition is making and become appreciated as an expert. If you have an original message and are a gifted writer, your message will stand out and will be shared. And if you are not a gifted writer, collaborate with one. The message today was strong enough that it pushed me over the edge to write this blog. With any luck and a little time management you’ll be hearing more from me soon.
Michelle Flaherty is an associate broker with Prudential Northeast Properties, serving Greater Portland, Maine. Visit her Web site at www.michelleflaherty.com.