By NICOLE MURRAY
A number of real estate industry professionals experienced a painfully slow 2023 and it is predicted this trend will continue in 2024. With high interest rates and low inventory expected, people are encouraged to use this year to prepare for an explosive 2025.
The Mortgage Note spoke with industry professionals to see what they expect and what tactics they plan on utilizing to be successful until the inevitable market boom everyone eagerly awaits.
“2024 is going to be another stubborn year for originators,” says Jason Perkins, president of CRM company Bonzo. “We might get some relief with rates, but tight inventory and rising home prices will continue to be a burden for potential homebuyers for quite some time.”
Marketing tactics have never needed to be more personalized. Perkins warns that the typical cookie-cutter texts and emails will get you nowhere in today’s market.
“Don’t send marketing fluff. Your goal should be to create real, authentic interactions that are relevant to each person’s needs. Your outreach, your interactions, and your touchpoints need to be meaningful and specific. Every conversation counts and all good business is personal,” Perkins said.
Rob Jensen, broker/owner of the Rob Jensen Company, says real estate is a field where professionals always have to hustle to stay on people’s minds.
“This year, you will either rely on check equity and dole out cash for marketing or sweat equity and hit the phones, attend open houses, and network like crazy,” Jensen said.
Jensen says his team is using downtime to strategize and revisit old tactics that may be worth bringing back in 2024.
“We have a new website in the works and plan on bringing back our marketing report cards that recaps activity and shows our sellers’ current listings,” explains Jensen. “We halted this practice for three years because inventory has been flying off the shelves but as the industry changes, we pivot.”
For people who want to invest money into marketing, Jensen suggests utilizing Google ads. Even though this marketing route tends to be a bit pricier, there is a larger return on investment because ads are targeted at a high intensity.
“We can focus on people who have searched for Las Vegas real estate anywhere in the country,” says Jensen. “This tactic is getting my information in front of people who have just started to think about their homebuying journey. With repeat impressions, I’ll be their go-to guy.”
Gabriella Lisi, a realtor associate at RE/MAX Revolution, said at least the market won’t be slower than it was in 2023.
“There may be a slow start, but I won’t be changing much. I will continue to hustle and capture people’s attention on what I can do and how I can help them,” Lisi said.
Lisi said she has met future customers while at open houses and new contacts at real estate conventions.
“Agents I’ve met at these events who don’t service my area have sent me referrals. Keep in mind other agents are not always your competition,” Lisi said.
And don’t forget about past clients who offer referrals or repeat business. Lisi encourages agents to reach out to see what kind of connections can be made there.
“My sphere of contacts has been and will be my number one resource,” explains Lisi. “Past customers have seen what I can do and how I can help firsthand. Don’t be afraid to reach out to ask for referrals, or if someone is happy in their current home. People will take your advice if you make yourself known as a trusted advisor.”
When it comes to social media, Lisi plans to post a balanced mixture of personal and professional content so future clients can relate to her on a personal level.
“People tend to be intimidated by the homebuying process and they won’t open up to me if they are intimidated by me as well. I want to disarm them with my relatable content that shows who I am as a person. I’ll post what I’m doing over the weekend or my favorite dessert recipe; small relatable things to keep people engaged so I stay top of mind,” Lisi said.
Jules Zaphire, real estate professional at The Pantiga Group, says the good news is consumers have never needed guidance more than now.
“People will always need a place to live or to upsize. I refused to enter the doom and gloom mindset in 2023 and I won’t in 2024 either,” Zaphire said.
A common mistake a lot of agents make is to solely market themselves as a real estate agent who can help when clients are ready to buy. Instead, Zaphire markets himself as a real estate coach who will help no matter where clients are in the homebuying process.
“I want buyers and sellers to know that I will hold their hand through the entire process,” says Zaphire. “You do not need to be ready to buy. I will share what I know, my predictions about the market, and anything else they need to find the home they need. Just call me Coach Zaphire,” he said.
Zaphire plans to take things to the next level by transforming his social media presence into a one-stop shop filled with useful real estate information, listings, and market predictions.
“I want to make my profiles a real estate resource for people. I’ll still post listings, but I want to make my content useful for all no matter where they are in the homebuying journey. People will buy a property on average 3 to 4 times in a lifetime,” Zaphire said.
Keep in mind that it’s still all about that personal touch.
Once a connection has been made, Ron Vaimberg, president of Ron Vaimberg International, suggests meeting with clients face-to-face for more influential and productive conversations. Tap into people’s emotional reasoning for buying versus solely relying on logic and factual numbers.
“When you start asking the emotional questions, you’re getting past the numbers, and the reason why this is such a powerful strategy is because the majority of human beings make decisions emotionally and they justify their decisions with logic,” Vaimberg said.
Jensen said one-on-one interactions are key to sealing the deal.
“65% of rapport building relies on body language and tonality which is hard to convey over the phone,” adds Jensen. “Clients will be multitasking or have screaming kids in the background and feel more inclined to hang up sooner. If you are physically with them, you can let them get to know you on a different level. People do business with people.”
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