Certified First Time Home Buyers Specialists focus on delivering value to a niche group of buyers within their market. The ability to differentiate yourself as a Realtor is important, in order to attract more client, and more business. Completing real estate designations serves as a major asset towards increasing your value and success in the industry, however, marketing yourself as a specialist is just as important. That’s one the components the Certified First Time Home Buyer Specialist (CFTBS) real estate designation focuses on, teaching you how to portray your value to client. After segmenting the market into different clientele, it’s important to understand the potential of first time home buyers. First time buyers make up approximately 30-40% of all home buyers, which is a sizeable niche market to work with. More specifically, a lot of realtors assume first time buyers are millennials (also known as Generation Y). Individuals born as Gen Y, were born between 1980-1998. Here is a breakdown of Millennials Real Estate behaviour, according to NAR.
- Millennials made up of 34% of all home buyers in the U.S., with a median age of 25
- 66% of home buyers were first time home buyers
- The median income was $82,000 and 66% were married couples
Prior Living Arrangements
Now that you have a little more background on the persona of your target market, you need to build a strategy on how you can capture first time buyer leads. First Time Homebuyer Experts understand that almost 90% of all buyers begin their search online, so naturally, a few strategies will include online marketing.
1. Blog Content
One of the best ways to capture the attention of first time buyers, is to produce content geared towards them. Blogs are a great way to help your SEO, which would contributing to your website being ranked higher on Google. Producing a series of information first time buyers would be interested in, can range anywhere from discussing your local neighborhoods, mortgage information, credit scores and more. It’s more likely first time buyers would seek for info, especially online, to better understand the home buying process. If you are not too keen on writing blogs, you can always hire blog writers, providing them with the theme or topic you would like the blog to be about. Remember to have a CTA (call to action) at the end of each blog, prompting your readers to take the action you would like them to. Examples can include, ‘call now to discuss your options’, or ‘subscribe now for more home buying insights’. Blogs are a great way to exchange value, the reader receives insights, while you (the agent) receive leads. Although the more blogs you producer, the better, quality should always be priority over quantity. It’s not a better strategy to put out 5 blogs a week that don’t offer much value to the reader, than to publish 2 blogs a week which are really helpful to first time buyers.
2. Landing Pages
Another great way to capture leads, is by promoting landing pages. A landing page is a single paged website, which provides minimal information and focuses on one topic. The entire purpose of a landing page, is for leads to provide their information, in exchange for something or value you provide. For example, you landing page can appeal for first time buyers to Download Your (enter your local market name here) Guide to Buying a Home or ‘Top Strategies Every First Time Buyers Should Know’. This can be a guide users can download, or receive an email, once they sign up. The landing page content will only focus on what benefits the reader, or lead, will receive by signing up. You can promote these landing pages through Google Adwords, using the right keyword, or through your social media. In addition to posting the link on your social media, you can also promote the landing page as an ad on Facebook. Once you start capturing leads, you can either follow up with them via an email campaign, sending more valuable content geared towards this specific audience, or call them to follow up. Bare in mind, the more information you ask for on a landing page, the less likely visitors will fill out the form. Information such as name and email are essential and should be required, while phone number can be optional.
3. Market Your Area of Specialty
If you have a real estate designation, such as the Certified First Time Home Buyer Specialist, promote your certificate and title. You can do this in a few different ways. The first, if you haven’t already done so, email you database of clients to let them know of your area of specialty. Provide a brief description on what your designation means, and more importantly, how it benefits your clients. Even if your previous clients may not be first time buyers, they may know someone who is, ask for them to keep you mind, tell them what you want them to do with this information. Another strategy is to promote yourself through social media. With Facebook, in addition to posting a status about your your area of specialty, make it your cover photo. Have your designation logo, contact info and your business logo always visible. You can further expand on your niche area by optimizing your profile, writing a detailed ‘About You’, including keywords such as your local market, and how you add value first time buyers. Repeat this process with your LinkedIn Profile as well. LinkedIn is THE place to showcase your professional portfolio, so take advantage of opportunities to market yourself as a specialist.
4. Ask for Referrals
First time buyers will most likely be aware of other individuals, such as friends, colleagues or family members, who are also first time home buyers. Ask your clients for referrals, even if they don’t know anyone in mind ready to buy a home at the moment, they should keep you in mind for the future. Make it easy for your clients to refer you. Whether it’s an email they can forward to their network, or a testimonial they provide on Facebook, ensure that your information is easy to find. If a client posts on their Facebook that they just bought a home, and their excited, without mentioning you, leave a comment on their post. The comment can be subtle, without it looking like a sales pitch, for example you comment can be ‘It was a pleasure being part of this journey with you to find a place you can call home. Congrats again and I hope you have many happy memories here’.
5. Network With Other Professionals
Teaming up with other professionals who can assist first home buyers is another great strategy to gain more first time buyer leads. Many first time buyers use mortgage brokers to help them understand the process and help them create a budget. There are a few different ways you can partner up with a mortgage professional and work as a team. The first is to become a guest blogger on another persons (in this case a mortgage broker) website. You can write on topics you know best, real estate! This can include your report on the current real estate market, trends in neighborhoods, budgeting for costs and more. Appearing on websites really reinforces the message that you truly are a First Time Home Buyer Specialists, and your content will be treated as expert advice. This attracts more clients to you, as individuals would almost always work with experts. This can also be replicated on other professional industries websites and blogs as well. Building rapport with key mortgage advisors who can refer you to their clients. You can build a strong network via online on through platforms such as LinkedIn, or create in personal relations with professionals within your community.
Focusing on a niche market helps you speak more precisely to your target audience. Understanding their needs, allows you to create content and cater value to help clients solve a problem. Differentiating yourself in any market will always serve as a key strategy, helping you stand out in your local market. There are a lot of ways that you promote your business, however, the message should always be how this will benefit your clients. Having a well rounded marketing strategy will push your business to the next level, truly having you live up to the title of a specialist.