What is your brand?Jun 23, 2021
In the second of my series related to the article by Tim Stoddart entitled, “How to Build a Personal Brand Business: 7 Steps to Create the Business of You,” I’m going to discuss websites. I fully agree with Stoddart that having a website is an important part of building a personal brand business. I also agree with his recommendation to avoid the mistake of putting all your efforts solely into social media where you are at the mercy of ever changing algorithms and possible restrictions on access to your clients. However, as a real estate agent, especially one just starting out, I don’t think you need to invest huge amounts of money into a customized website.
I must admit, I’m not the most tech-savvy person. Managing a WordPress or custom built site is daunting to me. In the past, I hired website designers to build and manage my site, but I found it time consuming and confusing. If I wanted just a minor change, I had to go through another person, and since I’m not versed in the language of coders and web designers, I had a hard time explaining what I wanted. It became rather expensive too.
For my real estate business I now use the free site provided by my broker. It’s simple, inexpensive and really all I need as a place to house my business information. I do recommend however that you invest in a vanity URL that directs to your broker site. Mine for example is www.teamhayden.ca. This allows me to maintain outward continuity and visual branding even if I decided to change brokers at some point in time.
I also highly recommend that you pay to have your own email address rather than use the one your broker provides. As agents, our email lists and contacts are our lifelines. Housing your own email through providers such as Go Daddy or even a paid version of Google, allows you to always remain in control of your email list. And a pro-tip: if you do use the broker-provided email account, schedule a monthly download of your email history and contacts.
If you do want to create a site of your own, it’s a lot easier these days with the introduction of user-friendly platforms such Wix. For the Resilient Series, I use Kajabi, a site specifically designed for businesses offering coaching, mentoring or online courses. When combined with graphic design apps like Canva, I have been able to create the look and feel I want, simply and effectively.
For day-to-day engagement with a wider audience I use social media. I’ve tried all the various platforms at one point or another and some were better than others. Most are relatively easy to use, but require paid advertisements to expand your reach, and in some instances, you have to pay to even be seen by your followers. For the audience I work with, I’ve found Facebook and Instagram to be the best. I post personal (but business appropriate) updates, tips, photos of new listings, and other information that my target audience may interact with. For connecting to other agents and people in the real estate industry I tend to focus my time on LinkedIn.
All in all, I try to keep my online presence as simple and focused as possible.
Up next in this blog series - Newsletters.