Let’s be honest, I could have titled this “500 Tips For Your First Month As a Realtor”…and it still wouldn’t be enough. There’s so much to get done when you’re first starting out that it can be easy to be paralyzed with fear and get nothing done at all. But I’ve found that breaking my work down into smaller chunks of priorities helps me stay motivated and focused. And sometimes you just need someone who has been there (and done that) to tell you where to start. I’ve chosen five things that I recommend new agents focus on in their first month as a realtor, and spelled them out for you below.
Get a professional headshot – and use it
They say a picture is worth a thousand words…but for agents, it can be worth thousands of dollars for your business. Your real estate headshot is key to your success. It’s your first shot at making a good impression with clients as they’re scrolling through endless faces online…so not having one is not an option. Book yourself an appointment with a good photographer, dress professionally, and bring along your best smile.
Find a photographer by asking your network for recommendations or search “real estate headshot photographer” in your area. Once you’ve nailed down a few contacts, check their website and reviews to make sure you like what you see.
Make sure you ask what format they’ll be returning the photos to you in. You want them in digital format–you won’t be able to use physical headshots in today’s day and age.
Now this might seem obvious, but once you have your headshot, don’t forget to use it! But I see so many agent profiles all over the internet without headshots, so I have to mention it. Add it to your social media, LinkedIn, Website, Zillow profile, email signature, and anywhere else you interact with potential clients.
Craft a killer bio
I recommend creating two bios: a bite-sized bio, and an extended bio. Because our world is primarily digital, you’ll need to use a bio everywhere. On social media, on your website, if you sign up for speaking events if you’re being featured on another website or in a magazine…I could go on. All of these require slightly different lengths, but if you create a short and longer bio you should be mostly covered for any scenario. If writing isn’t your strong suit, ask a friend to help or consider hiring a freelancer. Check-in with your network, because they often can refer you to freelance writers they’ve worked with.
A bio should obviously highlight any experience and credentials…but this can be tricky when you don’t have any experience yet. If you lack cold hard experience, pivot to focus on something else and what you specialize in. Tell the readers why you got into real estate to begin with, what you offer as an agent, and what sets you apart from other agents. Do you have great negotiation skills? Are you a marketing guru? Work with what you’ve got.
Reach out to your network
Building your network as a new realtor is one of your most important tasks when you are a beginner. Because you won’t have a ton of referrals (if any) yet, you need to reach out to the people in your life to let them know about your new license, so you’re the first person they think of if and when they are ready to connect. Think of everybody you know…acquaintances, hairdressers, dentists…let them know you are qualified and ready to help either them or their friends and family. It doesn’t matter how you contact your network – phone, email, text, snail mail – but reach out to them and let them all know that you’re now in real estate.
Create a business and marketing plan
Write this down in biiiig letters: treat your business like a business. By creating a business plan, you’ll legitimize your business to you and others. Your plan should detail what you plan to do, and how you plan to do it. It should outline your realtor business goals and methods you’ll use to achieve them. Also document what problems you think might arise along the way, and how you plan to overcome them. Additionally, your plan should state the roles and responsibilities of any team members you work with, and outline your finances and budget. Whew! I know, that’s a lot. But by using your first “slower” months as a realtor to get some of the logistics crossed off, you’ll be setting yourself up for success in the long run. You’ll be thanking yourself later, trust me.
Find a mentor or coach
Your first month as a realtor will be hard, but you don’t have to do it alone. The most successful agents all have people in their corner cheering them on and giving them advice. I wrote a whole blog on why top agents hire real estate coaches, you can check it out here if you’d like to dig into it a bit more. But the real tea is that coaches help us stay positive, accelerate the learning curve and avoid making mistakes. When you work with a coach you can learn from their mistakes, avoid making them yourself, and stay in a healthy mindset. If you’re looking for a coach to help you grow your real estate business, you can find more info on working with me here.
I know, this barely seems to skim the surface of things you need to do when you’re first starting out as a realtor–but I hope you take my advice: break down your list into smaller chunks and set actionable, clear goals for yourself that you can complete in short amounts of time. You’ll feel so good when you’re crossing them off, and your business will benefit in a big way from your clarity and focus. The five tasks that I recommended above will make a big impact on your business in a short amount of time, so I encourage you all to start there.
If you’re ready to cross “finding a coach to help you grow your real estate business” of your list, click here for more info.