How Preparation, Precision and Thoroughness will get you the New Instructions you Deserve

If you are an estate / letting agent, you need do something that will make house sellers and landlords initially aware of you and what your estate/letting company offers .. but awareness and attention won’t get the house sellers and landlords to pick up the phone.

Why?

Well just like everyone one is aware of all the other banks on the High Street but indifferent to their own bank .. people still don’t swap banks.

Just like landlords, obviously not your landlords at your letting agent, but the landlords of other agents who offer indifferent/rubbish service, those landlords are aware of the other letting agents (including you) on the High Street, but still those landlords don’t swap from those agents.

…and why do house sellers just ring the big boy agents and not you?

Awareness is one thing, but if you are not interesting, you don’t stand a chance.

Now when I say interesting, I mean interesting to the house sellers and landlords, not you as Letting Agent or Estate Agent. ‘Property of the Week’ is as interesting as watching paint dry to a house sellers and landlords, every landlord knows they are wanted, so why keep banging on about it?

I have a degree in Surveying .. do you care ..of course you don’t .. so why would a landlord care you are ARLA qualified?

House sellers and landlords do not care about you.. they don’t care how many offices you have or how long you have been open … they only care about one thing ….THEMSELVES! (it’s human nature!).

Give them something that helps THEM, solves THEIR problems or helps THEM with THEIR opportunities and you will be the most interesting person in the world, because creating something of value to the house sellers and landlords, you are creating an asset… an asset that has value which gives you direct access to building an audience of local house sellers and landlords.

Think about your favourite magazine or newspaper?

Why do they give away so much valuable content for next to nothing? They do it to build a loyal base of people who buy their newspaper each day. They want to build an asset that people willingly come back to each day by buying the newspaper.

They are then able to turn that attention into pound notes by people buying the newspaper and other companies advertising in the newspaper.. That’s why so many companies spend billions of pounds on newspaper advertising each year…. They Are paying for your attention.

But here is the game changer, now we have the t’interweb.  The same is true online, and it’s why content is an essential component of estate and letting agency marketing. It also scales better than newspaper advertising, so you are able to grow larger and faster, for less over time. That’s why creating content is essential, but not just any content.

You need exceptional content that gets your target audience’s attention, and keeps them interested.

So, how do you do that?

By wholly understanding your house sellers and landlords.

You need to ask these questions …

  1. Who are they? ..Landlords tend to be 40 to 70 year old middle to senior management middle class people, or they might be business owners.
  2. What makes them tick? .. Like any human, stuff that interesting to them. Landlords are just homeowners that don’t live in their buy to let property. Like all the British, all property owners are obsessed about the value of THEIR property, what’s it’s worth, what’s happening to the local property market to affect THEIR property. Where is the next BTL property deal? What’s worth buying?
  3. What keeps them up at night? Property Values dropping, Voids, tenants trashing the place, non payment of rent … but that’s the nasty stuff they pay you for .. (and let’s be honest no one likes to think any of these).

Note I didn’t mention the following ..

  1. What you sold or let this week
  2. Your knowledge of landlord and tenant law
  3. The Purplebricks vs High St Argument
  4. How many offices you have
  5. How wonderful your Rightmove Stats and market share is

Until you understand these things, you won’t be able to create content that speaks to house owners and landlords and compels them to take action.

Most businesses have several different customer segments .. but you have two .. LANDLORDS and VENDORS (tenants and buyers take care of themselves .. that is what RM and Zoopla is for).

The average man and woman in the street all have different motivations, so it is hard to create content for a vague vast general audience, but you aren’t talking to the massed public .. you are talking to all the local landlords and homeowners.

But there’s one more thing you will never find in my client agents’ blogs, newsletters and newspaper editorial.

You won’t find many articles on the blogs, newsletters and newspaper about their company, or their letting/estate agency services.

The most common excuse for not blogging is, “Landlords / Homeowners don’t want to read anything” You’re right… no one wants to read about you or your lettings/estate agency firm. But they would read about their own opportunities or issues (we mentioned those above).

Instead of being topic focused be landlord / hosue seller focused. Yes, the topics will change or evolve depending on what your audience cares about but all landlord’s and homeowners’care about is what is happening to the local property market to MY PROPERTY and if they are a portfolio landlords – where is the next BTL property I want to buy?

There is nothing so boring s.8 vs s.21 notices. Many landlords could not care less about tenancy law. Think about how your letting agency’s service helps other landlords. How does it take away their pain? What is the solution they get?

For example

  • no one wants to read about your lettings agency,
  • no one wants to read what YOU have sold or let this week,
  • nor what Award YOUR agency has won,
  • nor your market share
  • nor how many landlords choose YOU to let their property

….. but they would read about how you have helped other landlords on THEIR quest to find out what is happening to the property market, how you have helped other landlords to find THEIR next buy to let property to buy. Therefore, these are giving you opportunities to use and show your expertise and your attention to detail, because all this requires preparation, precision and thoroughness. Do that and it will get you the New Instructions you Deserve .. why?

.. becuase savvy letting and estate agents know that they’re in the people business, not property business.

You can’t sell anything without first getting your customer’s (ie landlords / homeowners) attention, but content is a commodity.

Millions of blog posts go up each day, so good content just doesn’t cut it anymore. You’ll just get lost in a sea of mediocrity. If you want content to drive landlords to your door, then it needs to be exceptional.

You are in an industry that the British are obsessed about .. PROPERTY.

By understanding your audience, and translating the benefits you provide by writing fab content about your local property market, 

Here is an example.. look at this blog from an agent in Chelmsford  .. his blog http://chelmsfordpropertyblog.co.uk and his awesome local property market newsletter https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B0d59TaH3c33c1VJUkVHbGlQYlk and the  … this man and his right hand lady Emma, are the Chelmsford Property Gurus) 

You see people (and thus landlords/homeowners) consume that content and share it with their friends on a daily basis.

Twitter sends 230 million tweets with links per day, and Facebook 30 billion pieces of content are shared in a month.

If landlords and homeowners aren’t commenting, sharing, liking or tweeting your posts, it’s not because that audience doesn’t like them… it’s because your content doesn’t move them.

Chelmsford’s does!

 

Christopher Watkin

I teach, guide, support, mentor, consult, counsel, partner many hundreds of UK Estate and Letting Agents in their quest to grow their estate and lettings agencies business. Old school techniques of touting, landlords wanted leaflets, ring us for a free valuation, we have sold this in your street leaflets don't work anymore. There are too many competitor agents .. meaning cheap fees are epidemic, overvaluing is almost a norm to get the stock and don’t even mention about the online/hybrid threat. So a few years ago, I set about looking around the UK and spotted that certain agents (not many mind you) in certain towns were still seen as the ‘go to person on property’, the person the newspaper editor rang up every week for a comment and I looked at what they did and they were doing some thing quite remarkable…. Only one thing but they were doing it so well .. and reaping the reward in terms of decent listings and decent fees, happy staff, decent sales pipeline and exchange income, managed lettings portfolios in the many hundreds .. but more importantly, they really enjoyed the job… they enjoyed getting up in the morning and people looked up to them Over 400 agents around the UK are on a mission to change the way our Estate and Lettings agency profession is perceived and looked upon, doing it town by town, city by city. I guide these 400 agents, teach them, mentor them and support them to be seen in a different light, to be seen as the ‘go to person for property’, actually be the ‘local property expert’ and prove it. Christopher Watkin 07950 147 572 christopher@christopherwatkin.co.uk

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