How Agents Succeed in Real Estate – They Apply the Best Marketing Practices

If you want to know what makes people successful, the best way to find out is to ask them. So when a broker raised the question of what makes real estate agents successful, I suggested that we ask them. This suggestion led to my surveying high producing real estate agents to identify their best marketing practices.

Marketing Strategies Are…

It’s important to clarify what the survey addressed. It focused on marketing strategies, not sales tactics. Marketing strategies are marketing-related activities, such as door-knocking, networking and advertising, undertaken to achieve overall business goals.

Different From Sales Tactics

Selling, on the other hand is a component of marketing. It is all about closing the deal.

Sales tactics, activities like identifying specific clients’ needs and facilitating closing, are things that lead to the successful completion of a transaction.

Essential Fundamentals Of Marketing

It is important to understand that the essential fundamentals of marketing have been applied successfully for more than five decades. Having worked with small businesses for more than 35 years, I have experienced how these fundamentals apply to virtually all businesses, regardless of where they are located.

The findings reported in How Agents Succeed in Real Estate are consistent with the essential fundamentals of marketing. Not only that-the findings actually reflect these very fundamentals.

This means that regardless of where your real estate business is located, the findings reported in How Agent Succeed in Real Estate will apply to you.

It also means that regardless of what marketing initiative you propose, the essential fundamentals of marketing should not be ignored. By all means be creative and stamp your individual identity into your marketing.

But until you have a lot of marketing experience behind you, stick to the tried and proven marketing basics. As outlined below, they are the foundation of your long term success in real estate.

Attracting Clients

The survey looked at what high producing agents currently do to attract new business.

It did not address what helped them launch their careers in real estate. Thus, the survey results provide standards to which all agents can aspire, not a blueprint for starting a real estate career.

Strategies That Generate Clients

Long story short, the four strategies that high producing agents use most commonly to generate new business are

o referrals

o advertising listed properties

o open houses

o networking.

When selecting a real estate agent, among the characteristics that prospective clients seek are competence and trustworthiness.

They ask themselves, ‘Can this person do what she says she can?‘ and ‘Is he really trustworthy?


It has been estimated that in North America, referrals and word-of-mouth recommendations generate 85% of new business.

In effect, a referral or recommendation, is third party confirmation that the business,–i.e. the agent–is competent and trustworthy. The challenge for agents is to increase the number of people who believe that they are sufficiently competent and trustworthy to recommend them to other people. This reputation for competence and trustworthiness doesn’t just happen–it has to be earned.


Advertising properties listed for sale represent implied endorsements of agents’ competence and trustworthiness. After all, the owners of the properties advertised for sale must have believed the agents to be competent and trustworthy; otherwise they would not have hired them to help sell their properties.

Open Houses

Open houses allow real estate agents to showcase their technical expertise and personal characteristics. By interacting with agents at open houses, prospective clients can assess individual agents’ competence and trustworthiness and by extension, how the agent can help them. For prospective clients, it’s like test driving a new car.


Networking is the most multi-faceted, versatile and effective marketing tool available to real estate agents. Among other things, it allows them to exchange information and showcase their trustworthiness. Above all, it also makes it possible to interact with other people, who ideally will like and trust an individual agent well enough to do business with, and refer others to him or her.


The best way to develop a client base is by well focused prospecting.

Prospecting is an essential marketing strategy. It generates new leads that can be converted into clients. It also provides the inflow of new clients. These clients will ultimately become part of the pipeline by contributing repeat and referral business.

A Benefit For All Agents

All real estate agents can benefit from applying the best marketing practices of high producing agents. Specifically, this means that the key marketing strategies of high producing agents will help you attract clients.

Michael Ortiz

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