Wednesday, June 13, 2012

“Knock-Knock” is No Joke:

Real Estate Professionals Find Out “Who’s There” By Knocking on Doors

Sunday morning. 7am. Berkeley Hills Realty co-owner Bill McDowell quietly posts signs for an open house at 2pm. At nine, he starts strolling the neighborhood. He chats with neighbors, pets puppies, stands as a cheerful target for children on bikes, hands groggy couples their Sunday paper, and personally invites each person he meets to the open house. He may or may not have on the special M&M tie fellow agent MayaTrilling gave him to tease him about his signature stash of peanut M&Ms. He will have on a smile. You’d be wise to bet the house he is representing with fellow co-owner of Berkeley HillsRealty, Tracy Sichterman, will sell and come fully equipped with good vibes for the new owners. That success can be attributed to the powerful combination of Tracy’s online marketing campaign and her gentle nurturing of each client coupled with Bill’s careful research and gregarious door-to-door visits. This broker pair encourages all of the agents at Berkeley Hills Realty to use their individual mixes of digital push and personal pull to embrace the company’s motto: “Small Town Ethics. Big World View.”

Bill and Tracy are not alone. Many real estate professionals are linking their technological savvy with more traditional methods of marketing to get quantifiably positive results in a chaotic market climate. 

Are you a real estate professional thinking of strapping on your foot-in-the-door shoes? Here are three quick tips to consider when knocking on doors:

  1. Never Show Up Empty-Handed: Some agents hand out a formal invitation to an open house. Others combine the invitation with small, useful gifts-- a calendar, a key chain flash drive, or snacks. When a name is added to their mailing list, some agents offer a chance to win a bottle of wine or entry into a drawing for a prize.  Include your business card in your package of goodies, but have more than your business card to share.
  1. Know Before You Go: Do your research and know the neighborhood. Read the neighborhood association newsletter, the local paper, and all of the signs posted in the neighborhood (and neighborhood businesses). When you know a little bit about the neighborhood you are likely to be more comfortable, which means you and your message are more likely to be welcomed.
  1. Share the Knowledge: Any information that can positively impact a homeowner’s investment or help a buyer to evaluate the market is likely to be well-received. Know what the concerns of local residents are and come armed with solutions, suggestions, and referrals. Do you know a good landscaper, contractor, house sitter? Be ready and willing to share that information if the topic comes up.
The best way to find out how door-knocking works is to talk to agents who are already working it. Find out which agents are getting good results with this method and ask for their advice while treating them dinner or coffee. Knocking on doors to find out “who’s there” might just be the key to boosting your real estate dream to the next level.

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