Yes, we are entering the dreaded winter season where everything slows down. But no, it doesn’t mean your business needs to slow to a trickle. With a little hard work and creativity, you can survive (and even thrive) this winter.
Here are some ideas to get you started.
Depending on where you’re located, you’ll need the following items in your trunk: a snow shovel, a window ice scraper, a lock de-icer, and a doormat that you can use for vacant listings. It’s also not a bad idea to keep a few new winter hats — of a local sports team perhaps — in your car that you can offer to underdressed homeshoppers.
This is especially important winter strategy if you’re just starting out in the trade and you’re freaking out about the slow season. You need experienced agents to talk to that can let you know how they get through the slow season. Go to events where your colleagues and competitors are likely to be.
Take part in some professional development courses. Feeling like you’re investing in yourself in the slow months can make a huge difference in morale, because even if you’re not selling houses you’re using your time wisely and putting yourself in a position to succeed.
Remember, the actions you take now will likely pay off in the dead of winter — in January and February — or early spring.
This is a no-brainer, and of course you go above and beyond with every lead. But now you really have to get creative. Try staging that extra bedroom as an office, a baby room or a TV room so you have pictures in your pocket that you can show to prospects. Make custom maps of the neighborhood featuring prominent landmarks, tourist destinations, cozy cafes and spots with live music. Again, as volume slows down, you’ll have a bit of extra time on your hands to do the little things that make the difference.
With fewer people shopping for homes, the competition for each lead is magnified. Only by increasing your marketing budget — whether that means personal budgeting extra effort or investing in a marketing assistant — will increase the chances that you win out over competitors. Don’t underestimate the value of your intellectual capital. Share what you know.
This can mean getting your name out there or putting out educational articles that will steer prospective buyers towards a purchase. For instance, you could put out an educational article in a local newspaper or on a blog about the tax benefits of completing a purchase before the end of the year.
Aim high. Make it your mission for December to be your best month of the year. Who knows, you may just pull it off.
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