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RE Branding 101: How to Become the Community Expert

For most people, real estate is a huge investment in their future, so they want to find an agent they can trust.

The best way for agents to attract new clients is to build a brand as the community expert because it lets people know they can be trusted with their local investment.

Most agents are well-steeped in their knowledge of the community, but few know how to leverage their knowledge to build a brand as THE expert of their community.

This blog will explain how to take the knowledge you have of your community and share it with people in a way that positions you as the go-to person for everything about it.

Get INVOLVED in the Community

This is by far the most important tip in this blog. You can’t be or even appear to be the community expert if you aren’t actually involved in the community.

Now, we’re not suggesting you take part in every single thing that happens in the community. Be strategic in allocating your time.

Here are some efficient ways to get involved that give you the opportunity to meet a lot of people, learn insights about the community, and jump into photos or interviews for PR:

  • Join a City Beautification Initiative

  • Attend Local Business or Amenity Openings

  • Attend Town Hall Meetings

  • Join the Local Chamber of Commerce

  • Get Involved with a Local Nonprofit

  • Join an Event Planning Committee

Grow an Audience in the Community

Growing a captive audience of community members is critical because they are the people that will engage with your content.

If you follow our advice in the previous section, you’ll already start growing an audience in the community.

Other ways to grow your local audience include:

  • Sponsoring Local Events or Clubs

  • Attending Parties and Get-Togethers

  • Hosting a Booth at a Fair or Farmers Market

  • Farming an Area with Print and Digital Ads

  • Hosting Educational Presentations

  • Writing Articles in the Local Paper

Segments of your audience will collect in different channels (e.g. social media, written email lists, and casual encounters), but you have to make sure to add each person to your database or CRM.

Create and Share Localized Content

Content is what SHOWS people that you are actively learning about and engaging with the community.

You might know the local housing market like the back of your hand and be highly involved in the community, but people will never know that if you don’t show them.

By sharing content with the local audience you’ve grown, you are building your brand and positioning yourself as the community EXPERT.

The content can take on several forms including:

To position yourself as the community expert, it’s important that the content you create and share has information about the community.

Below are some categories you can cover in your content:

  • Local Housing Stats

  • Community Events

  • Local Amenities

  • Local Businesses

  • School Districts

  • Community News

Be Persistent

When you position yourself as an expert -- what you’re doing is building your professional brand, and the key to branding is persistence!

Most resources will tell you that it takes consumers 5-8 interactions with a brand before they’re interested in buying from it.

This statistic is 100% true, and it will take that many interactions with your localized content before people consider you to be the community expert.

That being said, you should aim to create 5-8 interactions with each member in your audience every month by giving them several opportunities to see your content.

Many agents fear that this frequency will irritate their database, and they’re right if they stick to the same content and delivery method.

This is why we suggest diversifying efforts!

Diversify Your Communications

These days, people get bored very easily, and if you’re sharing the same content every week, your audience is going to get tired of it.

This is one of the main reasons why we see agents abandon email marketing. They always tell us that their database was tired of receiving emails from them.

When we ask what they were sending and how often they were sending it, we get the same responses:

  • Weekly Market Stats via Email

  • Weekly Listings via Email

  • Weekly Self-Promotions via Email

The problem is not that they’re being too persistent, but that they’re sharing the same type of information in the same format each week.

As you position yourself as an expert, you should strive to share a robust mix of information using a variety of distribution methods.

For example: Instead of sending weekly market stats via email, you could send weekly emails with different topics while posting weekly market stats to your social media page. You could then link all your emails (regardless of the topic) to your social media page where people can find the stats.

If you diversify the content you share and the way you share it, people will interact with your content more often without getting annoyed.

Just Listen

At the end of the day, your communication with your audience is mutual. You share content about the community, and they respond.

They might even share information with you about the community!

Make sure to reflect on whatever questions, comments, or mentions you receive in person or on various platforms.

There’s always some value in whatever you hear from your audience because it might give you insights about your community and what your audience is thinking.

Those insights will better inform the type of content you create to better secure your position as THE Community Expert.

The Forge Philosophy

At Forge Marketing Group, we care about providing our clients with sustainable, holistic, and client-owned marketing solutions to help them grow their real estate businesses.

We’ve worked with too many real estate agents who have been burned by “lead generation” companies, so we make it our priority to offer everything those businesses can’t.

Need help with branding strategy? Click here to schedule a free strategy call.

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