As far as I’m concerned, Brian is the #1 mortgage broker on the internet and I’m honored, downright honored, to share the stage with him at NYCConnect. The guy is everywhere and his advice for agents on things like picking up the telephone and using technology to build up your business is top-notch. I also know he has thick skin, so I feel comfortable giving him hell knowing he’ll return the favor. 😉
The danger with Brian’s message is that he is a mortgage broker who has found success reaching out to realtors and you (assuming you’re a real estate agent) will find a hell-of-a-lot more success if you reach out to consumers! Put another way, if you’re a real estate agent, then you won’t necessarily find success by emulating a successful mortgage broker! (Or put yet another way by the Bloodhound: do was we say, not as we do.)
My take is that real estate agents will be seduced by Brian’s message that the internet provides the ultimate mechanism for in-your-face marketing. On the internet it is possible to be almost EVERYWHERE that consumers congregate! You can be on all the social networks (MySpace, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.)… You can cover ALL the relevant keywords on your blog to make sure you show up on long-tail google searches… You can blog for lots and lots of site!
However, this only works for Brian because his target market is realtors who like the idea of forming a relationship with a mortgage broker. I hope this doesn’t surprise people, but most consumers of real estate services have NO DESIRE to form a deep relationship with a real estate agent. If you want to successfully engage consumers, you’ll need to get much more savvy.
To be successful online into the future, you MUST move way beyond keyword stuffing, plastering your name in comment fields, repeating your farming area name in every title, or sending “market updates” to all of your “friends” on Facebook. In general you must resist the temptation to do anything and everything that manages to annoy people.
To be successful online into the future, you will need to become an “internet” person. You’ll need to live and breathe permission marketing. You’ll need to have a message so compelling that consumers choose to receive your message. You’ll need to give up control over being the sole expert in your niche and that quite likely will mean giving up control over your community! Rather than THE expert, you’ll need to become a real estate guide… and a damn good one.
I’ve got more than a few ideas for agents on how to engage consumers by becoming the ultimate local guide, but this post is getting too long, so I’ll hit publish and save the ideas for another day.