5 SOCIAL MEDIA MISTAKES Real Estate Agents Must Avoid
TIPS TO GET NEW CLIENTS
Turning Your Profession Into A PASSION
ATILA ALMEIDA AMY HILLOCK SAM & CLARISSA MICHAELS RUDY MONTOYA
Fluent in three languages, PortuH guese, Spanish and English, Atila n Almeida has become a strong I force in the Dallas-Fort Worth real p estate market. In 2016, he received w VICTORIA PRINTZ ATILA ALMEIDA AMY HILLOCK SAM & CLARISSA MICHAELS his real estate license and hit the th ground running. “I originally got und as an events director for the Dal- real estate team Sam andit easy for them. I don’t make my clients a lot. Husband-and-wife themdo a bit of aIfleg upinto on thereal competition: and I had an estate “Sam because D sociation, a father who is a prominent I’ll bring in a stager.” Clarissa Michaels - Owners of C&S Premier16 Realtythe house needs to be staged, I work together as a team, so we’re really able to 19 23 RUDY MONTOYA interest address in investing property. I was c ory in the mortgagein and title industry, Houston, Texas – have built a highly-reputable the issuesinand cater to the needs curious of other about it,” sion for community,business it was only Amy takes charge of the marketing, mostly utilizing thatnatuis based upon a decidedly clientcouples.” Sam’s experience in the military has also he explains. But he soon fell in love with helping people, ti Top Agent Rudy Montoya – VICTORIA PRINTZ llock to enter the real industry.Sam and Clarissa’s dedication tothe internet and social media. “I doproven a lot of mar- as he is able to relate firstestate philosophy. beneficial, on a personal Owner/Broker at Montoya Real and the entirefantastic process became a passion for him. In 2017, b he received her real providing estate license and customer service has set themketing on Facebook and I use RE/MAX’s exceptional level with the many veterans they service. Estate Group in El Paso, Texas he was in the top 250 for Latino real estate agents in the e back, hitting the ground with above their competition, andprograms. I also send out email blasts to Realtors head running and shoulders – takes great pride in his profestransactions in her first Serving companies and lendtheir year. impressive work ethic, honesty and integrityin the area and work with title One other vital factor in the couple’s success is United States. He expects to attain same tofor 2018 sion,the and strives treat every onele among reasons that ninety percent of theirers to spread the word.” Throughout their xas and surroundingare areas, she the works it impressive all, Amy overall marketing strategy, which and continue his upward momentum. Today business of his clientshis like royalty. Thish are of with satisfied, repeat clients andhas one goal in mind. “I want them to includes photography being utilized Lakefront to servetransactions a wide range get the professional most focus on providing largely based on referrals from past clients and he isexcep-o referrals from past customers’ friends and family. money for their house asispossible,” exclusively (“Our photographer is solid the best of the ps buyers, sellers, investors and rentshe explains. tional service has in both best,” says Clarissa), and staging assistance to AMY HILLOCK SAM CLARISSA RUDY builds and pre-existing construction. Whether she’s& working with buyers orto sellers, shehis isMONTOYA starting build own team. It is an exciting resulted time for business and a growing Prior to is entering ensure eachand property is shown in aitsthriving best light. A presence in the area, Amy trustedthe real estate industry, ClarissadeterminedMICHAELS to get them towards their personal Atila, and he presence can’t wait to see where this journey leads. A reputation hadofalready been steeped in the ins-and-outs of thefinancial goals. “It can be a lengthy robust savvy useasofa broker who can husband is the mayor Little Elm,” and emotional on the internet and business. “I grew social mediamy platforms makes sure be thatconsistently the listings trusted to placeh “I don’t have to go out and search forup around real estate,” she says.process, so I like my clients to feel like they’re “Mymost stepfather was a real estate broker, my not just a paycheck to me,” are seen by as many potential buyers as possible, hisprioritizing client’s needscustomer front and centerT “I set myself apart from others by ch as some people do, of my business comes friends,and they’re she says. She makes Holly Young Photography worked in theBut title industry.” usually resulting in quick sales for top dollar. during every transaction. omes from referralsmother and word of mouth. I still sureEventually, to send them special gifts on the dayservice, of their home purchase, and making sure I build solid relationships with re the title industry herself, working CONTENTS hard to find my nextClarissa client. entered Sometimes it’s harder and also mails out handwritten notes and Christmas cards. hewho Atila stands in taking his realq as a extremely branch manager’s assistant. “I did pre and post-closing, and I Whilemy otherclients,” agents Rudy, might be explains. tempted to point to their commission has always been aalso business owner,out began status.” She is always knowledgeable noticed that there was a need for Realtors with a bit of compassion,” checks as being the best part of their job, Clarissa and Sam find the region because he primarily helps people of Hispanic oing on in the area. “I go to all the council and Whenever Amy isn’t working, you can find her traveling with her after a video store he owned began to falter. “I had estate courses explains. “SoI’m I decided to GET get my license.” Around thisher same most17) satisfaction in another aspectYOUR the industry: educating their TIPS NEW ngs, and I volunteershe in4) town 5 when notTO workhusband, playing with grandchildren and TURNING two Having dogs Pepper bought my thirdofhome in 2002,” Rudy “and Ito remembered descent. grown up we in Brazil andrecalls, moving the time, Sam ended nine years of service with the Marine Corps, and clients and potential clients. “We love that can help people make ot of the developers and builders, too.” But it’s not and Winston, or getting involved in various projects around town. that the sales rep had been very courteous. So when I was looking United States, Atila is able to relate to many of his clients wasCLIENTS casting about for a new career. “I convinced him to get his license the decision to stop renting and instead use homeownership as a INTO AI thought ularity that has allowed her to flourish, her profesShe’s involved with Operation FinallyPROFESSION Home, whichfor helps thefund next thing also to do, of real estate.” Obtaining his with me,” says Clarissa, “and the rest is history. We began working financial asset in their lives.” Clarissa teaches Peace who immigrated. “A lot of Financial them know about the nterpersonal skills have also helped her stand out. mortgage-free houses for wounded veterans. “I also also volunteer my license inbuyers, 2004, and he has now beenhave, excelling together at a model home selling new construction, and it has just seminars for potential home she and Sam as of in the real estate PASSION time on some Saturdays to work at Blue Sky Ranch, a horse ridtown I grew up in, so that helps me build a relationship world for fourteen years. “It’s been a lot of fun,” he says. evolved from there.” this writing, assisted more than twenty clients make the switch from what I do,” she explains.13) “I aim 5 to educate my cli- MEDIA ing, therapeutic ranch for special needs children.” Another project SOCIAL with them,” renting to owning theirhe ownsays. homes.He puts his clients first, and wants them in the loop about everything that happens. close to Amy’s heart is helping build an honorary parkOne downtown of Rudy’s objectives is to provide clients The couple eventually opened their own Brokerage in November of totheir make the process of main buying or selling an easyhisone. “I with MISTAKES REAL ESTATE 20) GOOGLE ADWORDS: lot of people don’t 2018, know that Sam thereacting is a higher tax andtoClarissa honor aislocal officer who recently lost life. with as Broker, currently on track to During the rare moment when they’re not working exceptional customer service. with “Onebuyers of the and things that is important s of town for newlyobtain builther homes, so I helplicense. them The pair are slowly building a team, stay throughout texting them and own Broker’s sellers, Samin andtouch Clarissa enjoy more than spending time atsays to me is thatnothing I treatthe mytransaction, clients like royalty,” Rudy. “I try to AGENTS MUST AVOID HOW TO MAKE GOOGLE DO t so it is not a surprise end their of thetime year As Amyagent looksthat towards the future, she is excited to keep expandbut at arethe taking towhen ensure that every is brought on homecalling with their them twogo young children. frequently.” Atila also staysofin beyond what is typically expected an touch agent. I afterlike to keep x bill.” Amy is also aware of every party in the and“We is open possibility of having her own team. She board shares their client-first businessing, ethos. treat to ourthe clients as themhas informed about everything that sure is going on.stay I explain wards,and sending them emails and making they in the THE WORK FOR YOU cluding the women,human who she says are sometimes recently made the 100% Club with RE/MAX, now her beings, and not just as potential commission checks,” says The future looks incredibly bright for Sam Clarissa, and in fordetail.” C&S process of buying or and selling a house contact. After receiving stellar service and a thoughtful ransactions. “Women feel more comfortable when sights set on reaching the Platinum level. No matter where the Clarissa, when asked to account for the aforementioned stellar rate Premier Realty. “We just want to continue to expand and to help s with them and add them into conversation, future “Whether takes her,they’re there’s buying no doubt she will enjoy says every minute of never of repeat and the referral business they enjoy. more people,” Clarissa. Above all, however, is one overarching closing gift, clients forget their time with Atila. The relationships Rudy forges with his clients are also extremely
king this a male-dominated conversation.” Whendollarit.home, “I wouldn’t begets where am todayobjective: without the helpon and support the stellar customer service that has a $5,000 lot or a half-million everyone theIsame to keep providing important luded in the process, things goSam a310-734-1440 lotand smoother, and of| my husband, and mybecome clients. their So, from the bottom ofto him. “I like meeting new people and getting to Phone Fax treatment.” Clarissa’s husband and wife310-734-1440 statusmy hasbroker, also given stock-in-trade. know them,” he says. “I the progression of the relationWhen it comes to marketing hislikelistings, Atila also goes easily transition them into each new step. “I make my heart, thank you.”
as it goes from aa business one to photographer one of friendship.toI think firstname.lastname@example.org | www.topagentmagazine.com above and ship beyond, hiring professional
it’s the personal touch I provide that keeps them coming back showcase each property. “I publisher. also Those market my listings on No portion of this issue may be reproduced in any manner whatsoever withoutand prior consent the Topreferrals Agent sending meofreferrals.” currently account Facebookare and on many of the major real estate websites,” Magazine is published by Feature Publications GA, Inc. Although precautions taken to ensure the accuracy of published for approximately sixty percent of Rudy’s overall business, an impressive statistic bybyany relationships he says. “Whether clients are buying Those or selling, they also materials, Top Agent Magazine cannot be held responsible for opinions expressed or factsmy supplied its measure. authors. transcend the closing table. “I like to call all of my past To subscribe or change address, send inquiry to email@example.com. all receive great treatment. I help them with everythingclients two or three times a year, just to see how they are, and to see if Published in the U.S. I can.” they need any real estate assistance.” KRP Pros. Photography
KRP Pros. Photography
After working with Atila, clients spread success the word Another factor in Rudy’s continuing is hisabout expert and 2 Top “Atila Agent Magazine thorough approach to marketing his listings. Professional their time together. One recently said, is a class act. For more information Amy Hillock,about Sam &photography For about more information ClarissaisMichaels , utilized exclusively, and every listing is syndicall 936-661-3031 or 936-520-6454 or emailcated TheMichaelsTeam@gmail.com out to an impressively large number of industry websites. please call 214-980-9366 firstname.lastname@example.org Holly Young Photographyor email
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5 Tips to Get New Clients If you’ve been in the industry for a while, you’ve probably built up a healthy percentage of repeat and referral business. Although it can be tempting to just maintain those relationships rather than generating new business, there’s something to be said for staying on top of 4
your game by never resting on your laurels. Actively pursuing new clients is not only a way to generate more business, but depending on how you do it, it could even lead to a profitable new niche. Here are just a few ways to build up your new client base. Top Agent Magazine
Become a referral partner with industry peers
Cold Call Expired and FSBO Listings
Everyone from mortgage lenders, to financial planners, to insurance agents, can be potentially lucrative referral partners for a Realtor®. You may already have great relationships with some that just need to be more formalized. But, you don’t just want to partner with anyone, make sure these are people you also feel completely comfortable referring your clients to - people who share your values and work ethic.
Another avenue to consider is divorce attorneys – yes, you heard that correctly. Helping people go through this difficult period actually requires a very specific skill set. You need to be able to handle the legal aspects, as well as the emotional ones. There are numerous training courses you can take if you decide to take this route, which could end up being a lucrative and much-needed specialty.
This is a route a lot of agents take when they are just starting out, that usually leads to great success. You probably haven’t cold called since you started out, and this is a great skill to build up again. It will not only sharpen your sales skills, but could generate a lot more business. People with For Sale By Owners (FSBOs) and expired listings, are usually very motivated to sell. This is a great chance for you to really hone in on why they need to hire you. Do you offer innovative marketing plans? Access to a large sphere of influence? Expired listing clients are looking for ways to sell a property that seems impossible to move. With FSBOs, you need to show them how you can get them more money in their pocket, even
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with paying you a commission. Pursuing both will really engage your mind to think outside of the box, which will not only get you more business, but make you better at what you do. 5
Partner up with a Relocation Company
Become a Builder’s Realtor® of choice
This is another niche market that you can really capitalize on if you want to pursue a new specialty. But, it is a specialty, so getting educated on the process will help you generate the business you want. It’s a complicated area of real estate, you’ll often
times be helping to facilitate dual transactions, as you try and secure a property at the same time you are helping your relocation client sell their previous home. This specialty is becoming an in-demand skill in areas that have major corporate headquarters.
This can be a real score for any Realtor®. The competition might be fierce to land a client like this, but there are numerous ways to make yourself stand out from the rest. Gain certifications and become knowledgeable about the construction process. Be wellversed on what trendy materials, features, and finishes will add value to a property. Get the builder on board with you by offering to take just a segment of the subdivision then wow them with your marketing skills. Take on properties they haven’t been able to sell. You can even offer to throw an open
Create a Website that Offers Real Value to Potential Clients
Perhaps the most useful way of getting contact information for people looking to sell is by adding a home valuation feature to your website. When people are first considering selling their home, finding out how much 6
house for them. This is another way to show them the level of service they can expect from you. These clients might be harder to land, but the payoff will be enormous.
it is worth is one of the first questions they want answered. By becoming a resource to potential clients (and current clients!), you just might be the first person that comes to mind when they’re actually looking to sell. Top Agent Magazine
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VICTORIA PRINTZ Victoria Printz has made her mark as Midland’s top real estate agent through outstanding customer service, top notch marketing and strong community involvement. Mentoring a team of 15, each member of The Victoria Printz Team Realtors brings a special expertise. “I like to hire talent over experience, I do my own training,” Victoria says. Known for doing things differently, Victoria has established a bulletproof boutique real estate company that believes in doing one thing and doing it right. In 2017 and 2018 Victoria successfully closed over $110,000,000 in sales per year. 8 Copyright Top Agent Magazine
Primarily a seller’s agent, Victoria takes the lead with listings while others support the high need for resourceful buyers’ agents in this fast-moving market. “The key to my success is that sellers want three things from me- feedback, feedback, feedback,” says Victoria. “And buyers want three things from buyer’s agents- time, time, and time.” Luckily for Victoria’s clients, she offers both, and goes above and beyond expectations. “My team takes the time to truly get to know each person. As for my clients, they receive the full package of continuous updates on market conditions, feedback from showings, Top Agent Magazine
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successes from marketing campaigns, and metrics around pricing and competition.” All of this effort has not gone unnoticed, with Victoria winning Woman of Achievement for 2017 by the Uptown Business Women’s Association, an award she was very honored to receive. “I followed a Copyright Top Agent Magazine 10
long line of very successful entrepreneur women, so it was a big deal,” she explains. She also earned the Girl Scout Women of Distinction in 2017. Victoria Printz is a well-known face in the Midland community. When Victoria isn’t working she is attending charity events Top Agent Magazine
and supporting causes that drive her own personal passions. Victoria sponsors many community events at her ballroom, The Ballroom Dance Studio. Quick stepping through real estate, Victoria still finds time Top Agent Magazine
to ballroom dance with her accomplished coach from Eastern Europe. â€œDancing gives me a renewed spirit for the body and mind and I enjoy attending dance competitions all over the world,â€? says Victoria. Copyright Top Agent Magazine 11
Real estate is a dream career for Victoria Printz, and she is incredibly grateful to help people achieve their goals. “I love the interaction with people. No two days are the same.
Every buyer and seller is different. Our job is to serve them and meet their needs, while also showing them that it’s the people that make Midland great.”
To learn more about Victoria Printz email Victoria@VictoriaPrintz.com, visit VictoriaPrintz.com, www.
https://www.facebook.com/VictoriaPrintzTeamRealtors/ call (432) 683 – 1000, or visit her Facebook page here.
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SOCIAL MEDIA MISTAKES
Real Estate Agents Must Avoid There is perhaps no greater marketing tool for agents these days than having a large presence on social media, but there is more to social media marketing than just opening an account and gaining followers. A lot of agents forget the social part of social media. Itâ€™s all about engagement, but it needs to be the right kind of engagement. This can often be the first impression potential clients or industry peers have of you, so make it count. There is no second chance to make a first impression, and that is especially true for real estate agents. Hereâ€™s just a few things you want to avoid.
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1 Using it to Vent
Social Media is a great place to complain and commiserate about things, but save that for your personal page. A real estate transaction is already a stressful ordeal, the last thing anyone wants is someone who seems like they’ll bring a negative energy to the process. Even worse? Bad mouthing other Realtors® or listings. You’re selling yourself and your skills, so don’t sell anything that shows you in a bad light. Much like marketing a property, everything you put out should be professional and inviting.
Lack of Consistent Branding
Yes, social media is about social engagement, but it’s also about creating brand recognition. While you don’t want it to be purely promotional, you are running a business, so create a consistent branding across all social media platforms. If you can afford a professional graphic designer to help you out with this, that’s great. But at the very least, have the same profile pic, cover image and highly visible contact information, across the board. And don’t forget to share links to your other accounts, some people prefer different social media applications.
3Not Posting Enough
It’s good to create a schedule of how many times you’ll be posting per day and to pick times when you might have the most engagement. Don’t over do it, but three posts a day at the right time, tends to be a good goal. There are numerous tools on Facebook, for example, that
can let you see when interactions are the highest. Stick to your schedule and adjust accordingly. It’s also important to not just post your listings. Be a resource for people who follow your page. Post community events, or other informative articles that are relevant to home ownership. Be a page they want to follow even when they aren’t buying or selling a property. They’ll remember you when the time comes.
Not interacting With Your Followers
It’s called social media for a reason. The more you engage with your followers, the more they see you as a real person, and not just a marketing tool. Not only do you get to know your past clients and potential clients, on Facebook, engagement actually will make your posts seen by more people. So it’s a win/win.
Not Sharing or Linking to Others
It might not seem like a good idea to not promote the blogs, pages or listings of other people, but it’s not only an excellent way to build goodwill, it will also increase your own presence when they reciprocate. So make a point to share posts and links for local businesses and even the blogs of your peers, if it’s a post that offers valuable insight into an expertise you don’t have. That will encourage them to share your posts and even your listings, which will increase your potential buyer pool. This is another incentive to create your own blog. Unique informative content is always of value, and more likely to be shared than promotional links.
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ATILA ALMEIDA Fluent in three languages, Portuguese, Spanish and English, Atila Almeida has become a strong force in the Dallas-Fort Worth real estate market. In 2016, he received his real estate license and hit the ground running. “I originally got into real estate because I had an interest in investing in property. I was curious about it,” he explains. But he soon fell in love with helping people, and the entire process became a passion for him. In 2017, he was in the top 250 for Latino real estate agents in the United States. He expects to attain the same for 2018 and continue his upward momentum. Today his business is largely based on referrals from past clients and he is starting to build his own team. It is an exciting time for Atila, and he can’t wait to see where this journey leads. “I set myself apart from others by prioritizing customer service, and making sure I build solid relationships with my clients,” he explains. Atila also stands out in his region because he primarily helps people of Hispanic descent. Having grown up in Brazil and moving to the United States, Atila is able to relate to many of his clients who also immigrated. “A lot of them know about the town I grew up in, so that helps me build a relationship with them,” he says. He puts his clients first, and wants to make the process of buying or selling an easy one. “I stay in touch throughout the transaction, texting them and calling them frequently.” Atila also stays in touch afterwards, sending them emails and making sure they stay in contact. After receiving stellar service and a thoughtful closing gift, clients never forget their time with Atila. When it comes to marketing his listings, Atila also goes above and beyond, hiring a professional photographer to showcase each property. “I also market my listings on Facebook and on many of the major real estate websites,” he says. “Whether my clients are buying or selling, they all receive great treatment. I help them with everything I can.” After working with Atila, clients spread the word about their time together. One recently said, “Atila is a class act. Top Agent Magazine
He consistently went above and beyond what any ordinary agent would have done. If he isn’t the best you have, I would be VERY surprised.” It is clear each and every person is important to Atila, and even when he is working with multiple people at once, he makes each one feel as if they are his only client. During any free time, Atila is staying involved in the community through his work with the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals, where he will be the President for 2019. “Our goal is to make the real estate profession a better business by helping the public learn about and acquire homeownership.” And when Atila has any off hours, he is spending them outside fishing or hunting. As Atila looks towards the future, he is excited to build his team and eventually wants to own his own brokerage. Throughout every step, his love for this industry will remain steady. “I just enjoy helping people improve their quality of life and provide security for their families.”
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please call 972-802-2256 or email email@example.com Copyright Top Agent Magazine 15
AMY HILLOCK With a background as an events director for the Dallas Builders Association, a father who is a prominent architect, a history in the mortgage and title industry, and a deep passion for community, it was only natural for Amy Hillock to enter the real estate industry. Six years ago she received her real estate license and hasn’t looked back, hitting the ground running with nearly a dozen transactions in her first year. Serving Little Elm, Texas and surrounding areas, she works with RE/MAX Lakefront to serve a wide range of clients. She helps buyers, sellers, investors and renters with new builds and pre-existing construction. A well-known presence in the area, Amy is trusted by many. “My husband is the mayor of Little Elm,” Amy explains. “I don’t have to go out and search for business as much as some people do, most of my business comes in Little Elm comes from referrals and word of mouth. But I still have to work hard to find my next client. Sometimes it’s harder because of my status.” She is always extremely knowledgeable about what’s going on in the area. “I go to all the council and chamber meetings, and I volunteer in town when I’m not working. I know a lot of the developers and builders, too.” But it’s not just Amy’s popularity that has allowed her to flourish, her professionalism and interpersonal skills have also helped her stand out. “I’m good at what I do,” she explains. “I aim to educate my clients and keep them in the loop about everything that happens. For instance, a lot of people don’t know that there is a higher tax in certain areas of town for newly built homes, so I help them prepare for that so it is not a surprise at the end of the year when they get the tax bill.” Amy is also aware of every party in the transaction, including the women, who she says are sometimes overlooked in transactions. “Women feel more comfortable when I discuss things with them and add them into the conversation, rather than making this a male-dominated conversation.” When everyone is included in the process, things go a lot smoother, and she is able to easily transition them into each new step. “I make
it easy for them. I don’t make my clients do a lot. If the house needs to be staged, I’ll bring in a stager.” Amy takes charge of the marketing, mostly utilizing the internet and social media. “I do a lot of marketing on Facebook and I use RE/MAX’s fantastic programs. I also send out email blasts to Realtors in the area and work with title companies and lenders to spread the word.” Throughout it all, Amy has one goal in mind. “I want them to get the most money for their house as possible,” she explains. Whether she’s working with buyers or sellers, she is determined to get them towards their personal and financial goals. “It can be a lengthy and emotional process, so I like my clients to feel like they’re my friends, they’re not just a paycheck to me,” she says. She makes sure to send them special gifts on the day of their home purchase, and also mails out handwritten notes and Christmas cards. Whenever Amy isn’t working, you can find her traveling with her husband, playing with her grandchildren and two dogs Pepper and Winston, or getting involved in various projects around town. She’s involved with Operation Finally Home, which helps fund mortgage-free houses for wounded veterans. “I also volunteer my time on some Saturdays to work at Blue Sky Ranch, a horse riding, therapeutic ranch for special needs children.” Another project close to Amy’s heart is helping build an honorary park downtown to honor a local officer who recently lost their life. As Amy looks towards the future, she is excited to keep expanding, and is open to the possibility of having her own team. She recently made the 100% Club with RE/MAX, and now has her sights set on reaching the Platinum level. No matter where the future takes her, there’s no doubt she will enjoy every minute of it. “I wouldn’t be where I am today without the help and support of my husband, my broker, and my clients. So, from the bottom of my heart, thank you.”
For more information about Amy Hillock, please call 214-980-9366 or email firstname.lastname@example.org 16
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Turning Your Profession into a Passion The old adage goes that if you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life. On the other hand, it’s easy to get bogged down in the day-to-day worries and responsibilities of your career, even if you generally enjoy what you do. While there’s no guaranteeing that every day on the job will be a picnic, there are a few steps you can take to vastly improve your morale and transform your profession into a passion. After all, cultivating a passion for what you do will not only add to your quality Top Agent Magazine
of life, but will likely make you more successful in the long run. BUILD YOUR BASE OF KNOWLEDGE Knowledge builds confidence, and confidence breeds success. A sure way to light a fire in your heart for your daily work is to challenge yourself to learn more and expand your understanding of your field. By doing so, you equip yourself for success, create challenges, and find the most inter-
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esting features of your work—especially those that most appeal to your interests and talents. Try reading the top five books on the topic of your industry, or subscribe to a podcast where thriving professionals offer their two cents. Either way, learning more about your industry is bound to reveal a source of inspiration worth pursuing. THINK ABOUT THE BIG PICTURE
and excelling in your field, you may find that others’ approaches inspire your own. Likewise, what you learn from other successful, passionate people in your field can help you shape your own office and work life, in turn creating more opportunities for you to fall in love with what you do, all over again. TAKE RISKS
CONNECT WITH LIKE-MINDED PROFESSIONALS
One of the biggest hindrances of professional passion is falling into a rut. Routines are familiar and everyday responsibilities vie for our energy. But the next time you tackle a task the way that you always have, take a moment and try to refresh your perspective—is there a more clever or efficient way you could approach this project? Even better: why not take the plunge and do the things you’ve always been meaning to—throw that client appreciation event you’ve put off planning, take the continuing education course you keep forgetting to register for, even try a creative activity that pushes you out of your comfort zone. There’s no better way to inject some passion into your life than by going outside your bubble and taking a risk.
Have you ever chatted with someone who was overflowing with energy for what they do? That sort of passion tends to be infectious—often causing us to beg our own questions about professional engagement. By participating in local organizations or networking with those who are active
Passion comes from all directions—from your own interior journey and from the world around you. To transform your profession into a passion worth having, invest in yourself and venture into the vast world around you. You’ll surely reap the rewards.
Sometimes reinvigorating your passion for your work is about looking outward, rather than inward. Gain some perspective and consider who your work helps in the long run. As a real estate professional—whether you work as an agent, broker, in mortgages, home inspections, or otherwise—your work positively impacts someone else’s home-sweet-home. You make a difference. While it may seem like just another day at the office, taking a moment to visualize exactly who you are helping in the world at large is a great way to add some motivational fire to your daily tasks.
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SAM & CLARISSA MICHAELS Husband-and-wife real estate team Sam and Clarissa Michaels - Owners of C&S Premier Realty in Houston, Texas – have built a highly-reputable business that is based upon a decidedly clientfirst philosophy. Sam and Clarissa’s dedication to providing exceptional customer service has set them head and shoulders above their competition, and their impressive work ethic, honesty and integrity are among the reasons that ninety percent of their transactions are with satisfied, repeat clients and referrals from past customers’ friends and family.
them a bit of a leg up on the competition: “Sam and I work together as a team, so we’re really able to address the issues and cater to the needs of other couples.” Sam’s experience in the military has also proven beneficial, as he is able to relate on a personal level with the many veterans they service. One other vital factor in the couple’s success is their impressive overall marketing strategy, which includes professional photography being utilized exclusively (“Our photographer is the best of the best,” says Clarissa), and staging assistance to ensure each property is shown in its best light. A robust presence on the internet and savvy use of social media platforms makes sure that the listings are seen by as many potential buyers as possible, usually resulting in quick sales for top dollar.
Prior to entering the real estate industry, Clarissa had already been steeped in the ins-and-outs of the business. “I grew up around real estate,” she says. “My stepfather was a real estate broker, and my Holly Young Photography mother worked in the title industry.” Eventually, Clarissa entered the title industry herself, working as a branch manager’s assistant. “I did pre and post-closing, and I While other agents might be tempted to point to their commission noticed that there was a need for Realtors with a bit of compassion,” checks as being the best part of their job, Clarissa and Sam find the she explains. “So I decided to get my license.” Around this same most satisfaction in another aspect of the industry: educating their time, Sam ended nine years of service with the Marine Corps, and clients and potential clients. “We love that we can help people make was casting about for a new career. “I convinced him to get his license the decision to stop renting and instead use homeownership as a with me,” says Clarissa, “and the rest is history. We began working financial asset in their lives.” Clarissa also teaches Financial Peace together at a model home selling new construction, and it has just seminars for potential home buyers, and she and Sam have, as of evolved from there.” this writing, assisted more than twenty clients make the switch from renting to owning their own homes. The couple eventually opened their own Brokerage in November of 2018, with Sam acting as Broker, and Clarissa is currently on track to During the rare moment when they’re not working with buyers and obtain her own Broker’s license. The pair are slowly building a team, sellers, Sam and Clarissa enjoy nothing more than spending time at but are taking their time to ensure that every agent that is brought on home with their two young children. board shares their client-first business ethos. “We treat our clients as human beings, and not just as potential commission checks,” says The future looks incredibly bright for Sam and Clarissa, and for C&S Clarissa, when asked to account for the aforementioned stellar rate Premier Realty. “We just want to continue to expand and to help of repeat and referral business they enjoy. “Whether they’re buying more people,” says Clarissa. Above all, however, is one overarching a $5,000 lot or a half-million dollar home, everyone gets the same objective: to keep on providing the stellar customer service that has treatment.” Sam and Clarissa’s husband and wife status has also given become their stock-in-trade.
KRP Pros. Photography
KRP Pros. Photography
For more information about Sam & Clarissa Michaels, Holly Young Photography
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call 936-661-3031 or 936-520-6454 or email TheMichaelsTeam@gmail.com Copyright Top Agent Magazine 19
How To Make Google Do the Work for You There is no denying that the internet is the first place a buyer begins looking for a new home in this digital age. Knowing how to put the powerful tools available on the internet to work for you can give you a decided advantage when it comes to attracting prospective buyers to your listings, as well as you as an agent. Google is easily one of the major superpowers of the internet, and they have one of the most powerful advertising tools available. Knowing how to utilize Google AdWords in the correct manner can make your internet advertising immensely powerful and possibly your best way to reach prospective buyers. Google AdWords is also extremely cost-effective. This multifaceted tool gives you much more control over your advertising campaign than other more traditional methods. You can target specific audiences, choose the specific search terms, also known as keywords, that will bring up your ad in someoneâ€™s search results, and you can set a budget for each campaign that will dictate itâ€™s reach and how long the campaign will run. Here are some tips for how to put Google AdWords to work for you. 20
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ent websites. You want to set yourself apart from every other real estate website users are viewing in their search for a house.
MAKE SURE YOUR ADS ARE GOING TO SEND USERS TO A SITE THAT WILL CAPTURE THEIR ATTENTION
You can spend an infinite amount of money on Google advertising campaigns, but if those ads don’t send users to a site that will capture and hold their interest, then you’ve just wasted all that money. Don’t put your cart before the horse. Make sure you are considering exactly where these ads are going to send users. To set up your website for success, at the very least you want to make sure users are greeted by clear call-to-action, such as a message that will encourage them to sign up for your newsletter or subscribe to your blog. You want to set up your website to maximize and capture the leads the ad campaign sends your way.
BUILD CUSTOMIZED OR CUSTOM-MADE WEBSITES RATHER THAN TEMPLATE WEBSITES It is easy and tempting to use template websites, or to offer your agents template websites if you are a real estate manager or broker. While this offers a cost-effective solution to providing every agent with a website, it does little to set you or your agents apart and capture the attention of users that are used to seeing a wealth of differ-
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MAKE SURE YOU ARE OFFERING VALUE ON YOUR WEBSITE
Don’t simply use your website as a kind of brag sheet. Let users know what makes your particular services valuable to them. Highlight your expertise in a certain location through tools such as blog posts, providing market updates, or giving pertinent information on a unique type of property. This will ensure that your online advertising campaigns are much more successful.
LOCATION IS EVERYTHING!
Location is everything in real estate, and the same holds true for Google AdWords. You can target specific locations in your ad campaign. While one approach is to focus on the area around your location, a more advanced approach would be to link AdWords campaigns to your Google My Business account. This is a Google service that includes your address in the ad, allowing people to then click on it and see exactly where you are located on a map.
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USE GOOGLE ADWORDS IN YOUR CAMPAIGN TO EXPAND YOUR BUSINESS IN GENERAL
Focus an AdWords campaign on expanding your business by incorporating specific zip codes and neighborhoods that will help you establish a presence in an area where you would like to increase your real estate business. Making sure that your ad appears in search results that are related to the real estate in a specific area will help shape the image and brand of your business as well as bring in new leads.
HARNESS THE POWER OF DATA
When you run a Google AdWords campaign Google Analytics captures a wealth of information about your target client demographic. You can gain real insight into your online visitors, such as when they visit, what they do and look at on your site once they get there, and what search terms they use. You can use all of this information to grow your business. Use Google Analytics to determine which users (location, gender, age) are utilizing specific aspects of your site, such as looking at multiple listings, reading your blog, etc. You can then use this information to target these specific demographics in your AdWord campaigns, Gmail ads, the Google Display Network, and other advertising.
Using the internet to help advertise your business and your listings is one of the smartest moves you can make as an agent in this modern age. However, you donâ€™t want to simply go into the process blind or youâ€™re wasting a lot of potential resources and data that could make all the difference. To reap the benefits of Google AdWords, you must apply an intelligent strategy to using these campaigns. 22
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RUDY MONTOYA Top Agent Rudy Montoya – Owner/Broker at Montoya Real Estate Group in El Paso, Texas – takes great pride in his profession, and strives to treat every one of his clients like royalty. This solid focus on providing exceptional service has resulted in both a thriving business and a growing reputation as a broker who can be consistently trusted to place his client’s needs front and center during every transaction. Rudy, who has always been a business owner, began taking real estate courses after a video store he owned began to falter. “I had bought my third home in 2002,” Rudy recalls, “and I remembered that the sales rep had been very courteous. So when I was looking for the next thing to do, I thought of real estate.” Obtaining his license in 2004, he has now been excelling in the real estate world for fourteen years. “It’s been a lot of fun,” he says.
While the financial rewards of his chosen profession are not inconsiderable, it’s the more personal side of the industry that provides Rudy with the most job satisfaction. “I like having the sense of purpose that real estate gives me,” he says. “I like waking up in the morning and knowing that I’m going to help someone achieve their real estate goals. It gives me a sense of accomplishment.” When he’s not working, Rudy enjoys spending time with his family, and can often be found reading self-improvement books. “It’s helped me go from a negative viewpoint to a positive one,” he explains. He is also currently learning to play the piano. If there’s a single through line to Rudy’s story, it would be that persistence and hard work pay off. “When the market crashed back in 2008,” he says, “I decided to go back to school and finish my degree in business administration, which helped me tremendously. So the point is, it’s never too late to realize a dream you’ve been holding on to for years.” When asked what advice he might give newer agents, he pauses for a moment before replying. “Don’t give up on your dreams,” he says.
One of Rudy’s main objectives is to provide his clients with exceptional customer service. “One of the things that is important to me is that I treat my clients like royalty,” says Rudy. “I try to go beyond what is typically expected of an agent. I like to keep them informed about everything that is going on. I explain the process of buying or selling a house in detail.” The relationships Rudy forges with his clients are also extremely important to him. “I like meeting new people and getting to know them,” he says. “I like the progression of the relationship as it goes from a business one to one of friendship. I think it’s the personal touch I provide that keeps them coming back and sending me referrals.” Those referrals currently account for approximately sixty percent of Rudy’s overall business, an impressive statistic by any measure. Those relationships also transcend the closing table. “I like to call all of my past clients two or three times a year, just to see how they are, and to see if they need any real estate assistance.” Another factor in Rudy’s continuing success is his expert and thorough approach to marketing his listings. Professional photography is utilized exclusively, and every listing is syndicated out to an impressively large number of industry websites. Social media is also leveraged to great advantage, ensuring that each property is seen by as many potential buyers as possible. “As with everything we do, we go above and beyond when marketing our listings,” says Rudy. “We know how important it is for them to sell their home, so we take that very seriously.” Top Agent Magazine
For more about Rudy Montoya, please call 915-444-8548 or email Rudy@montoyarealestategroup.com Copyright Top Agent Magazine 23
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