It can be hard to land your first few clients when you’re just getting started in real estate. Until your reputation speaks for you, you may have to work a bit harder to earn the trust of your first few clients. Remember that once you do have a few listings under your belt, you’ll be amazed at how quickly you were able to grow as an agent.
For now, there are several things you can do to earn the trust of your first real estate listing and gather some positive reviews to land future clients. Here are some of the most important things to consider.
1. Admit Your Limitations
People are usually pretty understanding that you have to start somewhere. Be honest about what you do and don’t have experience with, and communicate your plan for getting through any challenges. Many potential clients will appreciate that transparency and be excited to help you launch your career.
It’s natural to be worried about presenting yourself as inexperienced, but focus on the strengths you bring to the table. Your education and passion for the real estate industry, your mentorship from experienced professionals, and the time you have to dedicate to your first clients are all great marketing points to hit on. Lead with confidence and openness, and you’re on your way to building trust.
2. Mix Old and New Strategies
Real estate agents don’t have to choose between the old-school strategies for success and new-school technologies meant to make their job easier in the digital age. When you have conflicting advice coming your way about the most tried-and-true outreach tips, remember — you can mix and match agent advice to blend personability with digital methods.
For example, you might use old-school methods of networking with associates and taking photos, but then tap into new technology to list the home in additional locations and keep communication productive and organized. Social media is an essential tool for new agents, and networking is what can help you develop personal connections and grow your career from there.
Don’t feel the need to box yourself in while you’re working on landing that first listing. Try out various marketing tips and take note of the ones that work for your business.
3. Set Hours of Business
New agents must learn how to juggle clients and have a life outside of work. When you’re winning over your first listing, it can be tempting to tell clients you’ll fight for them any time, day or night. But what if you start fielding 11 PM text messages?
It sets a more professional standard to indicate that you live a balanced life — shows that you’re excited but not desperate to please your first client. For example, “I’m available from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. If you have an issue or question outside those hours, please send me a message, and I’ll get back to you as quickly as possible.”
Then, treat those business hours like you would hours at any other full-time job. Balance marketing and outreach, client responsibilities, and communication to fill that time and advance your growth. Don’t let your foot off the gas when you’re winning over a client.
Your first client will appreciate the good expectation-setting and you’ll be setting a good standard for yourself moving forward.
4. Practice Proactive Communication
Buyers and sellers alike are going into the real estate process with a lot of uncertainty. When they’re looking for the right agent, show them you’re able to manage their concerns and make the process easier by practicing proactive communication.
Make sure your initial communication with potential clients lines up with how you’re marketing yourself. Sending kind and timely follow-ups to initial questions, engaging in any vetting questions they have, and offering up expectations for your process and communication style from the start can prove that you walk the walk, not just talk the talk.
At the end of the day, many buyers and sellers are looking for an agent that they feel they can trust. While experience and local knowledge are important, trust is an even more critical and intangible quality you can build with solid communication skills and a lot of empathy.
Building Trust With Your First Real Estate Clients
Getting your first client is a major career milestone for any real estate agent. Stay focused on making the most of your working hours and trying out a variety of tested marketing strategies.
Then, seal the deal and build trust with strong communication skills and openness towards your potential clients. Before you know it, your real estate career will be taking off and ready to grow.
About the Author: Evelyn Long is the editor-in-chief of Renovated, an online resource for the real estate market. Her freelance writing has been published by the National Association of REALTORS®, Insights for Professionals, and other prominent industry magazines.