Let’s face it: being a real estate agent is not like having any other job. You may be part of a large company and see yourself as part of a team, but the bottom line is that you are responsible for your own bottom line. You are not just a real estate agent; you are a real estate business. This is a simple point, but it’s one that’s overlooked by many realtors. And if you keep it in mind, it will transform the way you think about your work, and help you to maximize your profits.
Using the Enterprise Mindset
Picture this: you are one just another realtor in the midst of hundreds or even thousands of others, each of whom are struggling to set themselves apart from the crowd, and each of whom has no particular distinction other than their name. Sounds like some mighty tough competition, no? Now picture this: You are an entrepreneur starting a real estate business. You are the business owner, and you use entrepreneurship strategies to set yourself apart from the competition. That means that you are not just “Sandy Jones, Realtor,” you are “Sandy Jones, CEO of Sandy Jones Properties.” This change in mindset opens you up to try out all sorts of new strategies.
Real Estate Entrepreneurship Strategies
Many of the strategies that entrepreneurs use can be applied to real estate as well. Here are a few examples:
- Niche Marketing: Rather than trying to compete in an already crowded marketplace, many entrepreneurs will find a niche market that has been untapped by their competitors. And just like in any other marketplace, there are niche markets in real estate as well. Is there a niche out there that you can capitalize on? Maybe luxury listings are competitive, but there are no realtors who specialize in finding luxury properties specifically for seniors. Using this approach, you can expand your client base by becoming a specialist in a unique field.
- Industry Innovation: Don’t just settle for following what you perceive to be the “best practices” for your industry. Entrepreneurs need to be on the forefront of new ideas and emerging trends. That means that you can’t just settle for reaching new clients via newspaper ads – you need to be using other tools like social media as well. Keep an eye on the latest emerging trends and capitalize on them rather than falling behind.
- Creative Marketing: Entrepreneurs are not just good business people; they have to think creatively as well. For a real estate agent, creativity might mean using graphic design elements to make your listings stand out, or coming up with fresh-sounding descriptions for your property listings that go beyond the standard “great price, great location” type of sell. If you don’t have the necessary creative skills, consider hiring a contractor who does, or taking the time to learn them yourself. Creativity is something that all businesses need, so why neglect it in your real estate business?
- Reality Checks: Good entrepreneurs will know that their business isn’t going to work as a “get rich quick” scheme. Starting a business takes a considerable amount of time and investment, and so does selling real estate. It may take you years before you see a full return on your investment, but as long as you have the end goal in mind, you will avoid discouragement and learn to push on through the struggle.
- Risk Management: Many businesses have become “risk-averse,” but the ones that often succeed are the ones that learn to manage risks rather than avoid risks altogether. Yes, taking risks means that you are more likely to fail, but if you don’t take risks, there is no way that you can achieve major success. Most entrepreneurs have no idea what the next month will look like for them, and as a real estate agent, you’re probably in the same boat. So instead of getting stuck, be daring and try out a new idea. And hey, if it fails, at least you’ll learn something. That will set you apart from other realtors who are sticking to what they know and not learning anything new.
There are plenty of other entrepreneurial strategies out there for you to learn from. The key is simply to change how you think about yourself and your work. You are not just an “agent” (someone acting on someone else’s behalf); you are the CEO of your own creative, innovative, risk-taking, and awesome real estate enterprise.