“Who do you want to be when you grow up?” We have been asked this question many times as a kid, and there were no limits to the choice of the job, but one particle was and is eternally there, even when it’s not uttered: we wanted to be successful; we still do. To become a successful real estate agent abides by the same tendency.
No realtor starts a career hoping to be mediocre or go unnoticed. However, everyone has their own version of success in mind; we can close our eyes and picture every detail of our successful version. And when we open them, reality hits: our predecessors have already defined success in our field. Whether we like it or not, it’s out there, and we are constantly measured by it. Even our perception is affected by it.
So, in this blog, we are going to cover “becoming a successful real estate agent” from both sides of the story: yours and society’s. Because we believe each play a unique role in your road to success. Let’s begin!
Table of Contents
Your Stops on the Road to Success
The roadmap to becoming a success in the real estate market is one with multiple designated focal points; you need these points to reach the destination.
Let’s start with the easiest and yet most essential:
Do your research.
It’s all vague and dark until you turn the lights on. When entering the realm of real estate, you need to know all there is to know. That entails both the market and yourself. When you are done with your research, you must be able to answer the following questions:
- What is expected of a realtor?
- How does a small business function?
- What skills should a realtor possess?
- How does the real estate market work?
- How do I get a real estate license?
- What do I need (training, assets, tools) to start?
- What are my attributes regarding this field of work?
In other words, you need to know thy self and thy business before taking the next step. Real estate, while a lucrative market, is a competitive one. Surviving and thriving in such a field requires you to dig into your personality and see if you have what it takes.
The typical tasks of an agent entail interacting with people, active listening, negotiating, making sales, attention to detail, customer service, and other skills and characteristics that can make your journey easier. For starters, you can take a personality test to shed light on the aspects you might not be aware of. Even if you don’t have all the necessary attributes, it’s best to realize that in the beginning and see if you are willing to adjust and compromise.
We are all familiar with the concept of planning because we do it all day, every day. From the second we open our eyes in the morning, we plan on what we are having for breakfast, what we’re going to wear, and where we are headed. We do this because it gives us a sense of purpose and direction; as the saying goes, “if you aim at nothing, you hit nothing.”
When it comes to your career path as a realtor, you require a clear pathway, and that entails:
- A comprehensive business plan
- Clear and realistic goals
- Timeline for set goals
- Your possible brokerage/s, partner/s, and mentor/s
- The region/city/county/town you want to work in
At this stage, being honest with yourself is the best approach. That is the point of deciding what kind of agent you want to become. There are many stereotypes regarding realtors, and you get to determine how much you want to match them. As David Brooke puts it so eloquently in his Ted Talk, you can choose how to navigate between living for your resume and your eulogy.
Once you enter the business, if you don’t have an image of your persona as a realtor, others will shape it for you. Research shows that honesty and trustworthiness are the primary attributes a realtor must possess. Keeping that in mind can assist you in balancing your impression on prospects.
Set your marketing strategy
If planning is setting light on your destination, your marketing strategy is your lantern. Here you turn your plans into action and clarify each step and how you will take it. For a practical marketing strategy, you need to:
- define your audience
- Setting and using lead generation tools
- Choosing a Content Management System (CMS)
- Picking your social media platforms and the type of content
- Setting your editorial calendar
- Choosing a Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
- Evaluating feedback and assessing ROI
You already know where you want to go; this is the “how” part.
Pick a mentor
You’ve done your research, and by now, you’ve learned all there is about the real estate market. However, any industry has its secrets that only reveal themselves in practice and through time. Of course, you can take the long road and discover them on your own, but the best shortcut is to find a mentor who’s already been there and done that.
Besides that, there is a difference between knowledge and its implementation in reality. Having a mentor assists you in this transition from theory to practice.
There are multiple options at hand that you can pick from:
- Joining a brokerage mentorship program
- Becoming a member of a real estate team
- Shadowing a well-established agent
Depending on the area you focus on, you can go with the choice that suits you best.
Become an expert in your field
Any career has a domain with various aspects; becoming an expert entails your expertise in all parts of the real estate territory. To become “the go-to” agent, you need knowledge and experience in the following:
- The technical information of real estate transactions
- Developments and changes in the real estate market
- Negotiation and sales techniques
- Complete understanding of your farm area
From the buyers’ and sellers’ perspective, one can find material on all of the above on the internet, so would reading these make them experts who don’t need agents anymore?
Your mastery of all the above is what makes you indispensable. You don’t just “know” them; you have attentively mastered and merged all these aspects together. The result is a spectacular service that no prospect can get via reading.
Build, expand and keep your network
The real estate market may carry the title of an inanimate object; it’s all about human interaction. The subject may be a property, but you get leads and make sales all through your referral network, including, but not limited to:
- Related Businesses
- Previous clients
Building a relationship with these people is essential, but maintaining it is a challenge. You need a solid strategy to keep in touch with your network. Remember that being genuine and original is what makes you memorable, not grand gestures and buttering people up. Don’t keep these ties just because they may come in handy one day; instead, acknowledge the value of each connection and let them know that you truly care.
Keep up and update
There was a day when knowing the traits of a business and sticking to them would be enough to have a successful career, but today is not that day. Change is the only concrete particle of our times. That is why adaptability is vital for survival in any business, especially in real estate, which is constantly affected by interest rates, inflation, and inventory, to name a few.
Here is how to keep up to date:
- Renewing your license through Continuing Education (CA) hours
- Getting regular updates on regulations regarding realtors and real estate transactions
- Participating in Training courses to gain new skills or dust off the ones you have
- Getting certified in your specialty. E.g., a Green designee, Seller Representative Specialist (SRS), Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR)
- Taking advantage of new marketing tools and platforms
Leave room for mistakes
Yeah, you read it right! No route to success is devoid of errors and mistakes. Whether because of your doing or some out-of-control cause, you may face setbacks and failure in achieving your goals in the designated time. Conceding to the possibility of mistakes and misfortunes enables you to stand up and go on after you’ve faced them.
Picturing a smooth road with no ups and downs only sets you up for failure without coming back. A realistic plan anticipates the possible shortcomings, either from your side or others’. When dealing with such circumstances, you know this is not the end but only a stop.
Keep in mind that success, in all its diverse definitions, never happens overnight. So, always keep one eye on the horizon to keep on going.
Make it joyful
Yes, there is a plan, and yes, you are following in the footsteps of successful realtors before you, but never forget that this is YOUR road. Since there is only one of you in the whole wide world, your path to success must be tailored to your uniqueness.
So, try your creativity and special touches to make this ride enjoyable for yourself and your clients. You are a party to one of the most critical decisions of people. Sure, buying and selling are, by definition, your job, but not for your clients. Purchasing a house, especially for the first time, is a life-altering decision. So why not make it a pleasant experience instead of a stressful one?
Your creativity can reflect in your marketing efforts, open houses, private showings, and freebies. Bringing bits and pieces of yourself into your job can be an exceptional asset. This approach will make your job more enjoyable while leaving a memorable impression on your prospects and clients.
Assess as you go on
How would you know you’re there if you don’t look back every once in a while? You need to check your plans periodically to see if you are on the right path. Perhaps you need some modifications along the way, or you might need to pause and rethink some goals. Either way, assessments must be part of your roadmap to success.
You can check the followings:
- The ROI from advertisements methods
- The feedback from different contents
- The marketing strategy
- Financial status
- Relationships with your partners
- The farming area you have picked
Depending on your goals, you can set monthly, quarterly, or yearly pinpoints for evaluation. With every goal achieved, you get to make new ones and expand your horizon.
Entering the market, every realtor has an idea of how to become a successful real estate agent. We talked about a roadmap in this blog that can act as a guide while you’re setting your way. The most important to remember is that “becoming” is a process; even when you get to “be” a successful realtor, there is always room left for “becoming” one. Indeed, the courage to continue bestows upon you the title of: “a successful real estate agent.”
- Knowledge of the purchase process
- Understanding of the real estate market
- Communication skills
Based on a survey, buyers pick a realtor through the following options:
- 47% of all buyers choose the agent referred by (or is) a friend, neighbor, or relative
- 13% of all buyers contact the agent previously used to buy or sell a property
- 7% of all buyers inquire about the agent because of specific property they have viewed online