I want to make it abundantly clear: no investor is immune to real estate marketing mistakes. There are simply too many variables for anyone’s marketing efforts not to exhibit an inherent level of risk. That said, there is no reason you can’t lessen your exposure to critical mistakes and increase your odds of realizing success. You see, real estate marketing mistakes will happen — to the best of us, nonetheless. However, you can’t let the logistics of today’s mistakes dictate tomorrow’s results. Instead, learn from your mistakes, and even the mistakes your predecessors made before you, and concentrate on improving everyday. If for nothing else, it’s only those that will learn from their real estate marketing mistakes that will reap tomorrow’s rewards.
Mistakes are far from the end of the world — provided you are able to learn from them, that is. You see, investors will inevitably make mistakes, and marketing strategies are no exception. Fortunately, your predecessors have already made many mistakes, and it’s entirely possible to learn from them. Let’s take a look at some of today’s biggest real estate marketing mistakes, and what you can do to avoid making them yourself.
1. Neglecting Consistency
As far as I am aware, the single greatest mistake investors make when marketing their company is inconsistency. New investors, in particular, fall victim to inconsistency more often than not. It’s the easiest trap to fall into, and the surest way to see to it that your message falls on deaf ears. If for nothing else, an inconsistent message is an incomplete one — one that will have a hard time getting your point across.
It’s worth noting, however, that inconsistency can take many forms. It’s just as inconsistent to change your logo on every direct mail piece you send as it is to change the amount of times you send a respective letter. Quite simply, if it’s not consistent, it’s inherently inconsistent. Any strategy that deviates from the previous attempt will most likely not work in your favor.
Remember, anything that doesn’t set expectations can be defined as inconsistent. If recipients of a direct mail piece can’t expect the same logo to appear on their next mailer, you are neglecting consistency. If they don’t know when to expect the next piece of mail, you are neglecting consistency.
Every marketing decision you make should do one thing: build expectations. The surest way to do so, at least that I am aware of, is to exercise constancy. Instead of sending mixed signals, maintain an inherent level of consistency across every marketing platform you choose to let your voice to be heard on. If you really hope to generate a meaningful level of interest from any of your marketing campaigns, you should make sure you exercise consistency regularly; only then will your target audience retain the message you worked so hard to make heard.
If you are doing your job correctly, your target audience should be able to draw a definitive line between your brand and the marketing materials you are putting out. When they see your logo, they should know exactly where the marketing materials came from.
2. Under Indexing
Otherwise known as tempering your expectations, under indexing can prevent even the savviest of investors from realizing their true potential. There’s no way of knowing how high your marketing efforts can take you if you don’t set the right expectations. And while I wouldn’t suggest doing your best Icarus impression by flying too close to the sun, there’s no reason you can’t set reasonable expectations for your own marketing efforts. The real mistake is in under indexing your own ability and selling yourself short. Without any ambition, it’s going to be incredibly difficult to realize anything more than lackluster results.
I maintain that far too many new real estate investors lack the confidence they need to run a successful marketing campaign. For one reason or another, their lack of experience is enough to make them second-guess their efforts, which can end up being one of the most costly real estate marketing mistakes. You see, if you don’t dare to dream big, you can’t expect big things from your own campaign. It’s worth noting, however, that you will most likely get our of your real estate marketing efforts what you put into them. That said, it’s in your best interest to prepare accordingly.
Perhaps more than any other industry, success favors the prepared in the world of real estate investing. Your marketing efforts should be heard on the level you want them to if you mind due diligence and exercise a strong work ethic. When you take the right steps, there is no reason you can’t reach as many people as you want.
Don’t, for one second, assume you can’t implement a sound marketing strategy. Doing so will prevent you from ever realizing your true potential. How will you know if you can market to an entire city if you don’t try?
3. Not Treating Every Lead The Same
Real estate is a people business; it always has been and always will be. The people you align yourself with on a daily basis will most likely prove to be your greatest asset, and each of your leads is no exception. If for nothing else, leads, both hot and cold, are the foundation of a great investor.
Few things, for that matter, are more important to investors than the leads they find themselves with, but I digress. Not all leads are created equal; some are hot and some are, well, cold. Hot leads, as their name would suggest, are those homeowners that have expressed an immediate interest in selling. Cold leads, on the other hand, have shown interest, but are less inclined to act sooner rather than later.
For all intents and purposes, today’s investors covet hot leads more than anything else, as they are more likely to end in a deal. However, I maintain that a lead is a lead. While hot leads are more likely to lead to an immediate deal, there’s nothing that says a cold lead won’t eventually turn into a deal as well. That said, you can’t pass over cold leads to play favorites with hot leads. And therein lies one of the biggest real estate marketing mistakes today’s investors make: they refuse to treat every lead the same.
There is no reason a cold lead shouldn’t receive the same attention as a hot lead. In fact, I could argue that they need more of your time. While a hot lead’s motivation should make things easier on your end, a cold lead will require an acute attention to detail and perhaps even months of nurturing.
I want to make it abundantly clear: treat every lead the same. Simply because a lead is cold doesn’t mean it won’t eventually be hot. Cater to your cold leads and give them the attention they deserve. Maintain contact with them and see to it their needs are met; it’s the only way you will find yourself at the top of their list once the time comes for them to act. And trust me, you will be glad you took the time to nurture your cold lead when the time comes for them to actually sell.
Knowledge Is Power
Again, not a single investor is immune to making real estate marketing mistakes. The sheer volume of variables that must be accounted for is simply too great to assume nothing will ever go wrong. That said, it’s entirely possible to mitigate the risk of making a mistake and tip the scales in your favor more often than not. To do so, keep an ear to the ground and continually pursue your real estate education. The more you know about real estate marketing, the easier it will be to avoid a disaster.