Sales and marketing are not the same thing. Yet I wonder how many people expect their real estate agent to be a great marketer over and above a great sales person. (I’m betting the dude at the right is in the “sales” camp, but maybe I’m judging a book by its cover …)
When I decided to get my license to sell real estate in our fair city of Lethbridge, it was not because I thought I would be good at “sales.” In fact, I not only dislike selling, I sort of suck at it. While I can “sell” houses all day long, I’m no sales woman. And I have no intention of becoming one either. My clients are super happy about this too.
It’s rumoured that doing well in real estate is to be able to close a deal. I did not find that to be the case for myself. I was probably the worst closer out there and I didn’t find that was true of my top super stars either.
~ Barbara Corcoran, Real Estate Mogul
I know what you’re thinking: Aren’t real estate agents supposed to be super awesome amazing sales people? They could sell you the shirt on your back, right?
Well, I’m sure quite a few can do that. But some of us are choosing a different path.
There are two camps in the real estate industry: those who live to sell and those who sell to live.
Ultimately, at the end of the day, yes, I will “sell” you a home or “sell” your existing home. For it’s not until a home is sold that I get a single penny for doing what I do. But I do NOT get up every morning with a burning desire to “close someone.”
When I get up in the morning and head off to work, I’m focused on anything BUT selling to and closing people. When I’m at my desk or in front of a prospective client or helping an existing one buy or sell a home, all I’m thinking about is ONE THING: how to be the most remarkable, red-carpet real estate agent you didn’t even know was possible.
Real estate agents continue to incur a trust deficit with the general public, but especially in Alberta where markets are thriving and hundreds of homes change hands every day. Granted, Lethbridge is a softer market than Calgary or Edmonton, but if I were a real estate consumer, I would be thankful for that. The boom-bust cycle is not only hard on homeowners, it’s brutal on the real estate industry. Order takers and “good closers” aren’t exactly the stuff of remarkable customer experiences.
In Real Estate, Client-Centric Marketing Trumps Sales.
Client-centric marketing considers the whole person. It looks deeply at the context in which a person lives and loves. It also looks deeply at the property in which that person has lived and loved, or may do so in the future. It’s a 360-degree view of real estate and of people, and so it is compassionate. It’s also more compelling (at least to me as your go-to Lethbridge real estate agent).
That said, many a rockstar “sales person” does very well in this industry, and I would never begrudge anyone with such inclinations that success. It’s just that, for me to be authentic and to give my clients the best of my skills, experience, and knowledge, I can only purport to be one thing: your trusted advisor. And in doing so, I am much more likely to get you to “the close.”