Too many real estate investors neglect the value in a solid real estate marketing strategy.
Do you know what you’re marketing? Who you’re marketing to? These crucial question will you guide you down the right path so that your efforts reap the right rewards.
5 Guiding Questions for Your Real Estate Marketing Efforts
1) What kind of investor am I?
Another way to phrase this question is “what is my real estate niche?”
As a real estate investor, you need to have a unique voice and point-of-view: at least as far as your marketing is concerned. Successful real estate investors have a focus, a passion, a plan, and a personal strategy. If you don’t know who you are, how are you going to market yourself or your business?
If you’re a buy and hold, passive real estate investor, you’re going to be targeting a very different audience than a flipper or a wholesaler. And then within that, it gets even more specific—what kind of properties do you invest in? Residential? Commercial? Vacation? Multi-family or single-family? All of these factors not only build your identity, but your marketing plan!
2) Who am I marketing to?
So you’re a passive real estate investor: who exactly are you marketing to? It depends! You could have several goals for marketing. Generally, you’re marketing your properties to tenants: but within that, what kind of tenants?
Remember: you have to keep the Fair Housing Act in mind. It’s more about simply not excluding a group of people based on age, sex, religion, orientation, and dis/ability. You also have to be aware of showing preference—something that can easily sneak into your marketing with good intentions.
That said, it doesn’t mean you can’t have an ideal customer in mind. You want good tenants. And you can attract them with quality marketing: good photography, accurate property descriptions, clear calls-to-action, and so on. Think about your ideal customer and what they may want and how you can highlight the best features of your property.
3) What results am I looking for from my marketing efforts?
Do you know what you’re trying to accomplish with your marketing? It’s not enough to just throw out aimless advertising, business cards, and mail-outs! You need to have specific goals in mind. Do you want to make new contacts? Drive traffic to your website? Fill vacancies? Build a better online reputation?
Whatever your marketing actually is, have a clear goal first. That will help determine how your market yourself or your properties, and how you ask your audience to respond to you.
4) What problems do I solve for my target audience?
As a real estate investor, what do you bring to the table? Are you helping provide high-quality housing to your community? Rehabbing a run down part of town? Are you an expert in investment, looking to mentor the next generation?
You need to ask yourself what problem you’re solving. Where do you fit? If you can solve a problem for someone, it’s far more memorable marketing than simply saying who you are and what you’re selling. Good marketing appeals to what you can do for someone, not how much of their money you’re going to take.
Sell the image of a better world for them: whether that’s a better place to live, or a brighter financial future.
5) What kind of connections will be most valuable for me to build right now?
Lastly, are you thinking about how your marketing efforts fit into your overall real estate investment strategies? Consider: what is going to be valuable for me right now and in the long-term? Marketing can be an expensive endeavor. You want your gains to be effective and, when possible, lasting. You’re investing in people, in a network, and in connections.
Sometimes, marketing is just about raising awareness and getting your name out there. Other times, it’s about pushing people to pick up the phone and pull the trigger on a decision. You might be making long-lasting connections.
It depends on where you are in your journey!
And remember: if you have a trusted, experienced property management team, you shouldn’t have to worry about finding tenants. They should have that covered! Your marketing efforts would be better spent making a name for yourself and making professional connections.
But not every buy and hold investor has management as on top of their game as they should be.