Guest Blogger Kathy Kennebrook: Get a Marketing Mindset
Kathy Kennebrook is a seasoned wholesaler, rehabber, and landlord from the Tampa area who gets her deals via direct mail. She’s my guest on Real Life Real Estate this evening (listen live at 5 pm eastern or catch the podcast at www.RealLifeRealEstate.com) and is a featured speaker at the 2016 OREIA National Real Estate Summit in Cincinnati on Nov. 3-6.
Get a Marketing Mindset
When you are getting started in the real estate business, I know that putting a solid marketing plan in place is going to be one of your first priorities. This will be the main strategy that will separate you from your competition.
Decide what your focus is going to be regarding the type of properties you initially would like to purchase in your Real Estate Investing business and create a plan of action that will begin to bring in motivated sellers in droves and create deals for you. If you don’t know what exit strategies to use, make getting educated one of your top priorities. Getting a good education in the buying and selling of real estate will quickly separate you from most of your competition. You can check out my website at www.marketingmagiclady.com for some really powerful tools for your Real Estate Investing business.
Don’t be afraid to do what those around you will not. Dare to be different and consistent in your marketing efforts and the results will be amazing. Niche your marketing and become an expert in your market place. Become educated within your market place so you know what your property values are and what your personal target market is going to be.
The first step that I take is to find out what my real estate market is doing. Are there a lot of pre-foreclosures? Do you live near a military base where a lot of people are being transferred? Are you in an area where there are a lot of ugly houses you can purchase inexpensively and then wholesale? Have you run demographics to find out what kind of income levels there are within your market area? Is the market slow and are there a lot of houses for sale?
If this is the case, then you know that it is a buyer’s market and there are a lot of good deals to be had. You just have to learn to be a little more creative in the way you sell your properties. If there are very few houses for sale and they are high priced, then it is a seller’s market and you need to adjust your marketing strategies accordingly. This is all part of discovering your niche within your market. Don’t allow yourself to be influenced by various advertisers or those who profess to be real estate experts in your area, take the time to discover what works best for you in your marketplace and stick with it.
The next step I suggest is to figure out what your marketing budget is and which marketing strategies will reach the highest number of sellers within your budget. For example, your budget may include signage, business cards, direct mail, flyers, ads, websites or a combination of all of these.
You should always have between three and five marketing strategies in place at any given time so you are reaching the largest segment of your market in a variety of ways. This way a higher number of potential sellers will see your message. For example, you may reach sellers by using direct mail that would never see your message in any other way.
I continue to test and track my results just as you should so you can make sure the marketing dollars you spend bring in the highest number of quality leads. If necessary drop the things that don’t work well and put that money back into the marketing techniques that are working well for you. This is also how you will learn which marketing strategies work best for you.
Track your real estate market changes so you can change your marketing accordingly as you go along. Using this strategy in your real estate investing business will assure that you always have the highest number of quality leads possible coming in. More quality leads mean more deals and more dollars coming into your business.
Be aware of the special problems of your market. Are there a lot of layoffs? Are there a lot of folks who are part time residents? Is yours a very high end market with a lot of luxury homes? Discover these special differences and market directly to these folks. Figure out what it is that everyone before you has done and then you do it differently. Believe me when I tell you that this one strategy alone can make you big profits in your business.
For example, in my market almost no one does direct mail on a consistent basis, so I have made this my personal niche. By doing this, there is virtually no competition for properties whatsoever. Figure out what your niche is by figuring out what your competition is not doing and do more of it yourself. We created specific direct mail campaigns targeting specific sellers who are more likely to work with us. Then we send out our message on a residual basis and watch the deals continue to come in.
Make sure you take the time to begin to build your dream team along the way. These are the people who are going to be helping you to locate deals and get them closed and then sold. This is how you make huge profits in the real estate business, by surrounding yourself with team players who want to see you make money so they can make money as well. There are many ways to use your vendors as “bird dogs” to find deals for you that you have virtually no marketing cost in whatsoever until you actually purchase the deal. At that point you would probably want to pay them a finder’s fee. This is a good way to keep them motivated to help you find even more deals.
I suggest that you make sure that you take a portion of the profit from each deal that you do, especially in the beginning, and put it back into your marketing so you can continue to grow your business. At the point at which you decide you have enough deals coming in each month, you will be able to determine exactly what your monthly marketing budget needs to be in order to bring in the number of deals that works for you.
Remember to set specific goals for your business and yourself and strive to meet those goals each and every day. By doing this, you are planting seeds of success for today and for your future. You won’t be able to see a clear picture regarding where you began or where you are going unless you do this. This is one way to keep focused and keep your business on track.
I have been to our courthouses and asked for landlords that filed evictions, probate cases, and people with building codes. Each department looked at me like I was crazy and said they don’t have lists like that they can print out. I literally have no money right now for marketing. I have been driving for dollars and send out about 40 letters a month. What else can I do?