Earlier today, I was riding around with a friend looking at some houses. He is a fellow entrepreneur and was telling me about one of his businesses. He has created an incredible product that is superior to its competition and can be sold at a competitive price.
He has 10 or 15 clients now but hasn’t sold anything lately. So I asked him, “Why aren’t you making more money off of it?” After going back and forth for several minutes, we came to the answer…MARKETING!
An excellent marketer can sell out an inferior product. I was thinking, “If he has a superior product that can be priced competitively, they should be selling like hot cakes. What’s the hold up?” Well, we figured it out. It’s the marketing plan!
If you want to be an active investor, handing out business cards is not a plan. It can be part of a plan. But you’re going to need more than that.
There are two sides to marketing for a real estate investor. The buying side and the selling/leasing side. If either side is lacking, your profitability is going to suck. If you don’t have any seller leads coming in, you’re definitely not making money…you’re not losing it either but come on. What are you trying to do here. If you already own properties but aren’t able to sell or lease them, you stand the chance to lose a bunch of money.
A Balanced Marketing Plan
On the buying side, you hand out business cards to everyone you come in contact with, you attend every real estate investors meeting in town, an ad in the “Housing Wanted” section of the newspaper every day, mailers going out to houses going into foreclosure, and a website that is optimized in search engines to bring you seller leads. Any combination will do, but it will take a combination to bring in a good deal flow.
On the selling side, a website where all of your properties are listed for sale, lease, rent to own, bandit signs out in the community driving traffic to your site, a newspaper ad, and as simple as this might sound, a sign in the front yard.
There are many ways to market on the buying and selling side for investors. No one way is right. After reading book after book in the marketing field, I know the secret formula. Have a multitude of lead generating strategies and test, test, test. What’s bringing in most of your seller leads? What’s the price per lead? Which lead source is bringing in the most deals? Where are most of your tenant buyers coming from? You get the idea.
No matter what business you’re in, marketing will make or break you. Determine to become an excellent marketer, and you’ve just established your success no matter what field you enter.