Tonya Eberhart is the founder of personal branding firm BrandFace, LLC. Michael Carr is a former BrandFace client-turned-co-author and partner. They focus on helping real estate professionals become the face of their business and a star in their market. Learn more at BrandFaceRealEstate.com.
5 Positive Changes the Pandemic Forced on Your Business
Having to become more intentional about when and how you communicate with clients has presented opportunities to strengthen your personal brand.
August 13, 2020
Uncertain times call for optimism and adaptability. While it may be hard not to dwell on the difficulties the COVID-19 pandemic has brought on our world, there are, indeed, positive changes that have been bestowed on your real estate business. These changes may have felt painful to adjust to at first, but they will improve the way you relate to your customers permanently.
- You and your clients have been forced to get comfortable with video communication, which will help expand your reach to prospects and grow your business tremendously. Even if you were well-versed in video before the pandemic, you now have to think more deeply about how to use it creatively and effectively. Face-to-face meetings are still the pinnacle of marketing—albeit more difficult to arrange with social distancing recommendations—but you can reach people wherever they are through video. And that can serve as a strong substitute or get you on the path toward that face-to-face meeting much more quickly. The world is your oyster, and you can expand the pool of people you serve.
- You’ve eliminated many time-wasters from the home search and transaction process without sacrificing information, education, or the personal touch. It’s now important to limit the number of people who visit a home in person, and to that end, it’s become a mainstream tactic to require that buyers get preapproved for a mortgage before going on home tours. This helps root out the looky-loos and brings the most serious buyers to the front—ultimately, speeding up the timeline of deals. Also, video—whether live or prerecorded—enables you to educate your clients at the exact time they need it most in the transaction while maintaining a level of personal attentiveness that’s so important to buyers and sellers. You’ve figured out how to be more efficient without losing the human guidance consumers crave.
- You’ve improved convenience for your customers, most notably through technology, by pushing the use of virtual tours into the mainstream. That empowers buyers to make more informed choices without having to leave home, and it gives sellers peace of mind that you can represent their property well without putting their health at risk. Think about buyers who are now purchasing homes “sight unseen.” Investors have done business this way for years. While buying a home this way isn’t for everyone, the ability to make the home search as easy as possible is a time-saver for everyone. Let’s face it—the easier you make the journey, the faster you get to the destination.
- You now understand the power of social media as a serious source of business. It’s proven to be a great tool for relationship-building in both personal and professional ways. As one of the few methods available to us to stay connected during the pandemic, you’ve learned how to use it to reveal your most authentic self—and that’s a powerful way to earn people’s business. Now, real estate pros know what kind of posts work beyond simply promoting listings.
- With all these different modes of communication, you’ve given clients more opportunities to see you, hear you, and feel like they know you before you even step into a virtual room or physical living room with them. This is the very definition of personal branding. Whether you know it or not, the need for even more communication during this confusing and tumultuous time has made your personal brand stronger and clearer than ever. All of the points above present opportunities to differentiate yourself from your competitors in a way that is both meaningful and purposeful.
Updated: September 17, 2020