Brand identity, otherwise known as brand awareness, remains a dominant ingredient to long-term success as a real estate investor. Not only is a brand identity the face of your company and the services you provide, but the overall perception people have of your business. It also has the authority to establish trust and loyalty among customers while helping to build credibility as an investor. In addition, a great real estate brand identity has the power to set you apart from the competition, helping you to stake a name for yourself and your business.
For those that are relatively new to the industry, the importance of establishing a strong real estate brand identity is second to none. Whether just starting out or a seasoned vet, how you brand your business will be the driving force to its future success. That said, the following highlights why a real estate brand identity matters, the benefits it entails, and how to create one for yourself.
Real Estate Brand Identity: Why It Matters
A real estate brand identity is the who, what, how, why, and where of your company. It sets the tone for how your business operates, provides a sense of who you are and what you represent, and delivers your message and content to your audience. Done right, it has the ability to transform ordinary consumers into loyal followers of your brand. Although it takes time to cultivate fully, a real estate brand identity will essentially create a visual representation of your company, or the brand itself, for customers.
In addition, a real estate brand identity will also create a personality for your brand. As part of your real estate online marketing strategy, this character will be used to not only communicate your message but evoke specific feelings in your audience. In essence, this personality will be used to engage with your customer base and leverage it to cultivate new customers. As an investor, the power of brand recognition cannot be understated. The following reveals the benefits of successful real estate branding:
As a small fish in a big pond, brand recognition is a prerequisite to success.To get noticed in today’s crowded real estate marketplace, investors will almost always need some branding to get their message across or have their presence felt. A real estate brand identity will assist investors in establishing a clear and consistent message, which is critical to reaching and maintaining customers but a face to go along with it. Done right, the mere sight or mention of your brand’s name will bring instant recognition and trust among customers, which has the potential to positively impact financial results down the line. However, I should mention that while a real estate brand identity aims to produce recognition among your peers and future customers, it’s essentially up to you–the investor–to see it through. Remember that not all recognition is good recognition.
Along with the ability to produce instant recognition, a real estate brand identity also has the power to build trust. This intangible component is a huge benefit for businesses, especially real estate investors, as a person’s home is generally an integral part of their livelihood. This equates to a significant amount of emotional attachment, which will hinder most real estate investors who are deemed untrustworthy. However, a real estate brand identity can help to cement a layer of trust among buyers and sellers, helping bridge the gap with trust. That said, brand identity in real estate is important for various reasons, but none is more important than building customer trust.
The one aspect every real estate investor lacks when first starting out is credibility. One of the major advantages of a real estate brand identity is the ability to expedite this process dramatically. As a rookie investor, your level of experience will be at an all-time low in comparison to your competitors, and potential customers will be judging your business and services on your credentials. With none to speak of, your brand identity will play an instrumental role in not only developing your reputation but maintaining and refining it through the years. A real estate brand identity is the first step beginner investors should take to begin constructing their credibility.
The final element to a real estate brand identity is its promise. As an investor, that promise — whether to be the fastest or most reliable — needs to be fulfilled every time to obtain the above-mentioned benefits.
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5-Step Guide to Creating Your Real Estate Brand Identity
Now that we understand the benefits and advantages of a real estate brand identity holds, it’s time to take a beginner’s look at how to build one. The following provides a five-step guide to creating a brand identity as a real estate investor:
1. Size-Up The Competition
The first thing investors need to do when constructing a real estate brand identity is to evaluate the competition. By taking the time to review your local market and review what others are doing, investors can gain insight into what concepts are working for investors and which ones are not. Taking the time to size up the market will provide investors with unique opportunities they didn’t know existed when first getting started.
Another benefit to evaluating the competition is exclusivity. Taking an assessment of current brands in the market will help ensure your branding is not confusable with your competition. This is also very important for credibility, as having a copycat approach could result in negative recognition.
2. Define Your Brand
The next step to building your real estate brand identity is defining who you are and what you stand for. Generally speaking, this will include aspects of your mission statement and core values, which are usually defined in your real estate business plan.
Before you can promote your brand and deliver your message, you’ll have to define it. To gain a better understanding of your brand, investors should ask themselves the following questions:
- Who is your target audience? What demographic are you looking to reach?
- What are your company’s values? Mission statement?
- What advantages do you have over your competition? What will you provide that others will not?
- How do you want potential customers to view your business?
3. Create It
Successful creation of a real estate brand identity is more than just business cards and networking. One you understanding your competition, defined your brand and what you represent, now is the time to create it. This will generally include the essentials like a logo and a slogan but creating an online presence, including a website with social media channels. This will also include building your buyers list; a database of buyers and sellers that may be interested in your services or know someone who could be.
4. Deliver Your Brand
With a clear message and platform to deliver it, the fourth step in building a real estate brand identity is the implementation stage. While this will generally include attending an assortment of networking events and local real estate meetings, a majority of it will include expressing your brand via outlets like your website, social media and blog. In addition, a direct-mail campaign can also be used to deliver your brand to potential customers.
5. Refine it
Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither will your real estate brand identity; the key to successful branding efforts will demand continuous improvements. That’s not to say you won’t need to rebrand at some point down the road. Your brand will essentially evolve over time, but your message and the things you stand for should remain intact. However, how you deliver that message may adapt over time.
A real estate brand identity can help you build trust among clients, earn credibility in your market, and increase your overall recognition. Therefore, developing the right brand as you start and grow your real estate business is crucial. Begin by surveying the market for similar businesses and learn which elements of branding you like best. Then, define your own brand and take time to consistently evaluate what works and what doesn’t. Brand identity is more than just colorful logos and witty slogans — it’s a dedication to your customer promise.
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