Marketing Tips from Real Estate Pros

Read what your peers have to say about marketing products and tactics that work best for them.

January 13, 2014

Craigslist is still working. Takes more work and creativity, but it still pulls in leads.” —Debbie Waitley, ExitRealty, Raeford, N.C.

“I am still a firm believer in snail mail, postcards, magnets, and newsletters. Unlike e-mail, they can’t just hit ‘delete’ without reading it. They still have to look at it, and your name will register even if they throw it in the trash. I have been called so many times to handle listings from people I never thought I would hear from. Then I walk into their kitchen and my magnet is on their refrigerator.” —Sandy Balzer Tobin, Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, Needham,

“I’ve been in the business for eight years. In 2013, I closed about 30 transactions, 10 of which came from Facebook. I maintain constant contact with my friends, family, clients, and other agents, and I have gotten so many great referrals. It’s the best free marketing there is. I don’t sell myself, but I do engage with my friends, discuss important topics to me (even politics and religion — oh my!), and talk about my life, kids, pets, traveling, as well as work. It helps to be an open book.” —Wendy Walker, Wendy Walker, William E. Wood and Associates, REALTORS®, Williamsburg,

I teach fitness classes. Having a second hobby-type job helps funnel in referrals and creates top-of-mind awareness. I also diligently follow up, and maintain excellent communication habits with present and past clients.” —Maxx McLeod Anderson, Smith & Company Real Estate, Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.

Yearly calendar magnets! This year, I had the Boy Scouts hand-deliver to my farm area, and that was my best idea yet. They wore their uniform and their parents were with them in their cars making sure it got done (big convoy). Neighbors saw and were impressed too. Best of all, it helped the Boy Scouts raise money, it was cheaper than postage, and it was done in style. The rest were mailed to past clients. Calendar magnets are the gift that keeps on marketing me all year long. I’ve been doing this for more than 23 years.” —Suzette Peoples, Peoples Properties, Sugar Land, Texas

Postcards. It’s how I launched my business, and besides referrals and past customers (many from postcards), it’s still the number one source for new customers I’ve never met before. I use to create the cards and send them out twice a year. I also send just listed/sold mailings as often as possible, which is about once or twice a month, which I’ve increased from every other month.” Lori Fein, Prudential Florida Realty, Aventura, Fla.

Community involvement! I’ve involved with my local board where I have served as treasurer, president-elect, president, and immediate past president. I have volunteered at local elementary schools reading books to children and shelving library books. I enjoy mentoring high school seniors with post–high school plans. I also volunteer with the Oregon Judicial Department Citizen Review Board, reviewing cases of children in DHS foster care.” —Jessica Payne, Coldwell Banker Real Estate, Newberg, Ore.