Do These 11 Things As Soon As You Get Your Real Estate License
You’ve just passed your real estate exam and have obtained your license, but now what? You may feel overwhelmed and unsure of where to start in building your career as a real estate agent.
The real estate industry is highly competitive and it can be difficult to stand out and build a successful career. Without a clear plan and strategy, it’s easy to become lost in the crowd and struggle to grow your business.
In this blog post, I’ll provide you with 11 actionable steps you can take as soon as you get your real estate license to set yourself up for success in the industry. From developing your brand to setting up your website and social media, these tips will help you establish yourself as a successful and reputable agent in your market.
If you’d prefer to watch my video or listen to my podcast on this topic, click below:
Join A Brokerage, Your Local Real Estate Association, and Natl. Assoc. Of Realtors
The first step every real estate agent needs to take when getting their license is to join a reputable brokerage. Ideally, it would be best if you had researched brokerages while in class and before passing your exam so that you can activate your license immediately after.
You’ll want to research which brokerages offer the level of training, support, and tools that you desire. You’ll also want to consider whether joining a team or going solo is your desired path.
This option will depend on your goals and commitment. Many teams will have strict requirements for their agents, whereas brokerages are less likely to implement a quota or sales volume.
As a new agent, you’ll often focus highly on the brokerage fees and commission split. I would recommend against this as getting a solid start and having the best business opportunity is most important.
Also, you’ll need to decide whether you prefer a cloud-based brokerage or local brick-and-mortar. This decision depends on the level of accountability you require and how you learn the best. Both have pros and cons, so investigate both options in your research.
Lastly, the brokerage you choose will often dictate whether or not you must join a local MLS board and the National Association of Realtors. I typically recommend doing this, regardless of what your brokerage requires, as there are many benefits of joining both, like access to the MLS, electronic lockboxes, and a list of NAR benefits like discounts on many Realtor services.
Develop YOUR Brand
The next thing you must do as a new real estate agent is to plan out your brand strategy. Having a well-thought-out brand will save you time in the future. It will also help you build momentum and leverage in the future, ultimately making your job as an agent easier.
Personal Or Company Brand – Decide whether or not you want to brand yourself personally or as a company entity. Whatever you decide, be sure to choose something where the domain name and social media handles are available.
Colors – Determine on the colors you’ll use in your marketing. When choosing colors, I recommend keeping things simple. Decide on a primary and accent color along with a light base. It’s hard to go wrong with this strategy. Be sure to save the hex codes for the exact colors you choose so that you can match your colors on every platform and marketing piece you create. I like to use the tool coolors.co to help me decide on brand colors.
Fonts – When it comes to fonts, try not to use more than three. You want to ensure that potential clients and referral partners can easily recognize your brand from a distance. A good rule of thumb is to choose one font for headlines, one for subheadlines, and another for body copy. I like using the tool fontjoy.com to help me decide on font choices.
Tagline Or Slogan – It would be best if you also created a tagline or slogan that is easy to remember, displays your unique value proposition, and resonates with your target audience. Your slogan should be used in all of your marketing materials.
Logo – Finally, you’ll want to purchase a logo design from a reputable freelance designer or design site like fiverr.com. A good logo should capture the essence of your brand and be memorable enough for potential clients and referral partners to recognize it.
Develop A Marketing/Advertising Plan
Once you’ve designed your brand, the next step is to decide how you wish to implement marketing and advertising into your business. If you’re unsure of the difference, marketing is building relationships with potential customers, like your social media presence and referral network. Advertising is the act of putting money behind a message to reach audiences that may be unfamiliar with you or your brand.
Marketing should include online and offline activities like networking events, joining local chambers of commerce, creating content for your blog, and leveraging your social media presence. Advertising can include anything from Google and Facebook Ads to postcard mailers and billboards.
Developing a plan and budget for how you wish to implement marketing and advertising into your business is essential. This will help you stay focused on your goals, track progress, and measure results in the future. Be sure only to choose one or two main marketing and advertising methods.
Get Your Business Cards And Other Promotional Materials
Now that you have your marketing and advertising plan, you’ll want to start putting resources together, so they are ready once you’re working with leads and clients. Invest in business cards and other promotional materials that reflect your unique brand. Also, consider creating a buyer, listing presentation, and other marketing pieces like a lead magnet.
Having these materials ready will make it easier for you to stay top-of-mind with clients and referral partners. Additionally, having professionally printed materials will give you a sense of legitimacy and make it easier for potential customers to remember your brand.
Setup Up A Website And Social Media Accounts
Now is the time to use all the planning you’ve done to this point and start taking action. First, snatch up a relevant domain name and all social media handles that match your brand. Even if you don’t plan to market on a particular social media platform, you’ll want to ensure that you have access to the handle of your choice down the road.
For your website, you’ll need to decide whether you want a DIY solution or an all-in-one. I wouldn’t go with your brokerage solution unless you have full access and export rights to everything. Your website is too essential not to own the rights, content and leads that result from it.
Should you go with a DIY solution, you’ll need to purchase the domain name, a hosting package, a content management system like WordPress, an IDX provider, and a CRM. All-in-one solutions, like Chime, kvCORE, and AgentFire, are excellent options and easy to get started but come at a higher price.
Get To Know Your Local Market
Once you have some marketing setup, you must start researching online and on the ground. Get familiar with using your MLS, running CMA’s, and understanding what different areas in your target market are priced at and what’s available.
Take that knowledge, and start setting up previews on open houses and newly available properties. The more homes you walk through, the easier it will be to understand what certain prices get for clients. This way, you’re more knowledgeable when you are working with clients.
Also, be sure to document this learning process on your social media and other marketing avenues so that you can show that you’re actively involved in real estate and share all the knowledge you gain along the way. You don’t need to be an expert to share helpful information with your audience.
Make Connections With Other Agents And Industry Professionals
You’ll likely meet people along the way when you’re out and about checking out properties and your local area. This is an important step as well. Stop in and talk to agents that are hosting open houses. Get their business cards and see what’s working and not working for them.
Also, stop into local businesses, get to know the area better, and network with potential referral partners. Again, get their contact information and create a database of possible connections and referral partners.
You never know who will become your next client or referral partner. Typically, it’s not on the first meeting that you discover an opportunity available. It takes consistent follow-up and exploring that relationship to make things happen from it.
Invest In Continuing Education And Professional Development
To grow continually, you’ll want to prioritize your continued education and professional development. My tip is that rather than simply taking whatever training and courses are readily available, you seek hyper-relevant training for your business and the one or two marketing and advertising channels you’ve decided to pursue.
Too many agents take tons of training just for the sake of training. It would be best to become the expert in your respective lead generation method rather than a jack of all trades. Don’t be afraid to invest in the relevant courses, seminars, and webinars to help you grow in your chosen path. An investment in yourself is one of the best investments you’ll make in your business.
By investing in yourself, you’ll gain focus, confidence, and clarity on exactly what you need to do to succeed in this business.
Establish A Budget and Set Financial Goals
Here’s where having a plan is essential. I’ve put it here, rather than in the very beginning because by now, you should have enough good information to design a good starting business plan. Take all the knowledge and action you’ve put into your business so far and start thinking about how all the pieces fit together.
Your plan doesn’t need to be elaborate and complex. However, it should be well thought out and detailed. Here are the four things your business plan should include:
Goals – Determine your financial or impact goal for your first year. Then start to figure out how many homes that takes based on average commission for your market and target audience. Finally, reverse engineer that into how many homes monthly you’ll need to sell and account for the first couple of months being slower as things ramp up.
Budget – How much money do you have to spend on your business, and how can you maximize that investment each month? Should you spend that money on advertising, marketing, or education? All these are questions you need to answer in your business plan.
Primary Lead Generation Method – What will be the one lead generation method that you specialize in? This should be the method where your target audience is going to be most active and receptive to hearing your message. In the beginning of your real estate career it’s essential to not bite off more than you can chew, both for time and money purposes. Your resources will go much further and be more effective when focused on one primary method.
Tracking And Accountability System – Once you’ve determined your primary lead generation method, decide how to track your efforts and results and hold yourself accountable for the outcome.
Once you’ve created this plan, put it somewhere that you’ll see it every day, and it inspires you to put in the work necessary to succeed in this business because, trust me, it’s worth it!
Create A List Of Potential Clients
If you haven’t already, you’ll want to start consolidating all of your phone contacts, social media friends, and acquaintances who you may not yet even have their contact information into ONE central location like your CRM.
Having everything in one place will make you more efficient and organized. It’s extremely difficult to be effective when you are disorganized. Not only will you not be efficient, but it’ll discourage your motivation.
Even though it can seem monotonous and boring to organize data, this step is critical for any agent who builds a real estate business. This list should be your gold mine which you’ll use in your marketing efforts.
Establish A System For Tracking Leads And Client Interactions
As I mentioned, when building your business plan, you’ll want to create and stick to a system that tracks your activity and results. Relationships are everything in the real estate business.
Tracking how often you’re reaching out, following up, and what transpires from those conversations is paramount. This system will ensure that you don’t miss any potential opportunities, and it’ll be easier to follow up on leads who have already expressed interest.
Many agents overestimate the amount of work they do. However, tracking meaningful conversations is where the rubber meets the road. It’s black or white; either you have made enough conversations and added enough new relationships to your database, or you haven’t. This should be your number one priority every day.
Wrapping Things Up
In conclusion, obtaining your real estate license is just the first step to building a successful real estate agent career. By following the 11 actionable steps outlined in this blog post, you’ll be well on your way to establishing yourself as a reputable and successful agent in your market. From building your brand to networking with other agents, these tips will help you stand out in a highly competitive industry.
However, building a successful career as a real estate agent can be challenging, and it’s essential to have a support system in place to help guide you along the way. That’s where my course, Agent Flight Academy: Flight 101, comes in.
Flight 101 is a comprehensive course designed to help new agents hit the ground running. You’ll learn everything you need to know about building your business and growing your income as a real estate agent. From creating a marketing plan to networking with other agents, you’ll be armed with the knowledge and tools you need to succeed.
So, if you’re ready to take your real estate career to new heights, check out Agent Flight Academy: Flight 101 today. Sign up now and start building your successful real estate business today!
Great tips! Do you have a free CRM that you would recommend?