There’s No Better Marketing Than You Being You

Don’t waste your time on every technology bandwagon. And don’t fall victim to common online marketing misconceptions. Unfortunately, real estate pros have been lied to — because nothing works better than just being yourself.

October 17, 2013

As a real estate speaker and trainer, I have insight into what’s happening right now for brokers and agents. Unfortunately, I often see some “expert” teaching agents about a new app that does the exact same thing as the app they talked about last week.

It’s all too common to see these speakers jump on every new tech product, all in the name of creating new content for their audience. The unintended consequence is an industry of real estate professionals who get too caught up in constantly learning about new tools and training on the latest products when they should be spending their time selling houses.

I want to be clear: I am not anti-tech or anti-guru. I myself use technology, learn new things all the time, and have a large virtual coaching program through which I teach real estate pros on a regular basis. But the content has to be relevant and consistent or we gain nothing.

With this in mind, here are three of the most common lies that real estate practitioners continue to fall victim to.

1. You have to be blogging to stay in the business.

Did you know that according to NAR's 2013 NAR Member Profile, the typical REALTOR® earns 21 percent of their business from repeat clients and customers and 21 percent through referrals? That is 42 percent of all business being done. What’s more, did you also know that REALTORS® typically bring in only 4 percent of their business from their Web site?

I understand that there are real estate professionals who are making a killing off of search engine optimization, Internet leads, and other forms of online business. But my point is that if you’re a person who doesn’t like to write, stop thinking that you have to blog.

Leverage your own personality, what you’re good at, and what you enjoy doing. Maybe you’re great at cold calling, door knocking, or marketing to past clients. Do what works for you.

2.  Separate your personal life from your professional life online.

We are living in a world where there is no difference between personal and professional anymore. Your friends and followers know what you do for a living, but if you’re afraid to post a personal picture of yourself, for instance, holding a beer, then you are missing the point. The fact that you drink a beer on the weekend is exactly what connects you to your buyers and sellers.

The fact that 21 percent of an agent’s business comes from past clients using them again is actually a travesty to me. That number should be much higher. You were created with unique DNA, and nobody plays you better than you. Either make the decision to leverage who you really are in a business that relies on relationships, or get a job at a place where you can hide behind a desk and have no personality. Real estate, simply put, is not that industry.

3. There is great ROI in social media.

I know that you are probably expecting me to now blast social media and explain what a waste of time it is. In actuality, I don’t believe that to be the case. I am very active on social media and have great followings on Facebook and Twitter. That doesn’t mean I believe there is a great return on investment in those places in the traditional sense.

I personally closed seven transactions that came directly from Facebook during the last two months I was selling real estate full-time, so I may come off like a bit of a hypocrite. But in my opinion, getting involved in social media with the purpose of it making you money is like taking a microphone and standing in front of 5,000 people and believing it will make you a great public speaker. If you weren’t great at connecting with people before you joined Facebook, then creating a public profile is not going to change that.

Social media simply gives you the audience and enhances who you already are and what you do well to begin with. Or, as Scott Stratten put it, “I agree there is no ROI in Twitter, but there is ROI in being awesome and sometimes that happens on Twitter.”

In the end, having a blog or great Web site won’t fix having a crappy business. My advice to anyone reading this article is to understand yourself and what you are good at, create a plan, never underestimate the value of hustle, and be consistent. Failure is not an outcome unless you stop. When you are persistent, failure is just a part of the process on the way to your only true destination, which is to succeed one way or the other.

Jared James

Jared James is a national speaker and trainer in the real estate industry who has tens of thousands of followers on Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter, and Youtube. Subscribe to get his free sales tips and videos at To connect with Jared, go to