New Real Estate Agent Geo Farming Plan
How To Geo Farm in Real Estate
Geographic farming is the most powerful way to grow and maintain a successful real estate business. It allows you to establish your brand and centralize your listings and sales in one geographic area. To be a successful farmer you must commit to an area and understand that it’s a marathon, not a sprint. Setting up these expectations and being in the right mindset right out of the gate is the key to success.
In this real estate agent training lesson and podcast, you will learn the best new real estate agent geo farming plan.
Here Are The 5 Most Important Tips For Being Successful at Geographic Farming:
1. Choosing a farm location:
Work areas that you are familiar with and that you like, or a price range you would like to be in.
Make sure the area isn't already dominated by 1 or more agents.
Pick areas that have a turn over rate of at least 4%
Choose between 500-2,500 homes and consider your budget simultaneously. We suggests you begin with 250-500 homes to begin and then expand as saturation and desired ROI is accomplished.
2. Creating a farming budget:
What is the total amount you can allocate to farming? Figure out how much it will cost to hit every house at least 2X/month at a minimum
How to calculate ROI of farming: First look at your marketing activities and the associated costs. Some cost like direct mail, holiday door knock gifts, sponsoring a community event. Use ROI as your deciding factor as you plan out your activities for the year. Planning activities a year in advance gives you the confidence of knowing what you’re doing, when and how much of your budget is going to marketing.
Use digital ads like area targeting ads with Google and Facebook. These can be very cost effective.
3. Committing to a successful farm:
Remember farming is a long-term commitment…and CONSISTENCY of connecting with the people in your farm is key. Homeowner’s need to hear from you, see you and receive information from you on a regular basis.
Deliver value – be the farm expert. Your role as the go-to agent in an area is to be the most knowledgeable person about the area…you are the FARM EXPERT. Specifically, what is happening with the values in the neighborhood, how many are currently on the market for sale, what new initiatives can possibly be affecting their home values. What are the specific issues these homeowners want to know about and how can you bring them the answers and give them the inside scoop about their community.
4. Staying connected with your farm:
As we mentioned before, consistency is critical so each month your marketing plan should include varied communications from you.
Proof of Success piece
Free home equity updates
The inside scoop about the neighborhood trends and news.
Discount coupons for various vendors you work with.
Give them something of value and they will look forward to you stopping by. If you live in the farm consider hosting a neighborhood party, sponsor community events.
Examples of community events:
Neighborhood garage, yard sales
Home improvement seminars
Sponsoring an athletic team
Spring cleaning event
Community charity drive for gently used clothing
Easter Egg Hunt
Free pictures with Santa
Pro Tip: Make sure you have a big banner with your name and face on it at all events.
5. Quickest ways to dominate a farm:
Know your inventory – every time a home comes on the market you should be previewing it. Homeowners come and go but that home is there for years to come. You need to know as much about the inside as the outside. Make notes after previewing to put in your farm folder.
As soon as a new home owner moves in, you should be the first there with a ‘Welcome to the Neighborhood” basket of goodies (things from local shop owners is always good and they will often donate to get their names in front of new people). New homeowners have no preconceived ideas of what the neighborhood is like so it would perfectly natural for you to knock on the door and introduce yourself as their Neighborhood Professional Realtor. To let them know you are there to be of service to them and their family. That you will be walking the neighborhood from time to time to share valuable information. This will put them as ease with you immediately. Think how much faster you will know everyone in your farm by these simple tips!
Quick domination comes from having a plan and following it religiously. You must out-work and out-service competition to succeed. Like all areas of lead sources, plan ahead –plan your budget, plan your marketing, plan your schedule so your system is predictable and profitable.
Use our door Knocking Strategy to help build familiarity
Example Annual Plan
[00:00:00] Hello and welcome to Rev Real Estate School. The podcast with quick tips and actionable advice to help you sell more real estate in today's world. And now your host Michael Montgomery.
[00:00:11] Hello and welcome back to Rev Real Estate School. I'm your host Michael Montgomery. Today we are talking about something that is came up in the questions over and over again. We're talking about geo farming. What can you do in order to best set yourself up for success when you are starting a geo farm. How can you best spend your money. What should you look for in a farm. All of these questions will be answered in today's quick episode.
[00:00:36] Couple of quick housekeeping things as we're coming up on episode number one hundred round number ninety six today which means early next week we jump in to episode number one hundred. This will be a little bit of a different episode where we're going to dive into some of the most popular topics from zero to 100 episodes. Also there'll be a couple of free giveaways so make sure you're around for that episode. We'll keep that going for about a week or so after the episode launches. So in case you're listening to this after the fact you will have about a week to enter your name for some of the free items that we'll be giving away on episode 100.
[00:01:10] Now let's jump into geo farming. This is one of the best ways that you can grow a sustainable real estate business. People do it all the time. If you look at the successful real estate agents in your market chances are that they do farm an area. Now if you haven't heard of geo farming basically what you're doing is you are focusing your marketing efforts on a specific area of your town or even say a condominium building or something like that you're establishing your brand and centralizing your marketing efforts in one geographic area. Now to be a successful farmer you must commit to the area understand the area understand this is a marathon and not a sprint. And I love the visual of farming because what you're actually doing is you are you're planting seeds you're taking care of them you're watering them you're nurturing them and only after a period of time can you actually reap the rewards and can you harvest. That's why the term geo farming makes so much sense and it's exactly what you're doing you're nurturing an area and you see the rewards down the road. The funny thing is when you plant those seeds you're not going to see anything come of it right off the bat. So let's jump into our five tips for geo farming.
[00:02:26] First off you have to choose the right farm. You have to choose the right farm. How do you go about doing that. Now there's a few different ways that you can do this but this is what I recommend. There's three very important things. Number one choose an area that you're familiar with. If you haven't farmed before or an area that you're interested in. You have to be interested in the area. If you're not interested in it you will lose your enthusiasm over time.
[00:02:53] Next is make sure your farm area isn't already fully dominated by one or five agents for that matter. Make sure that it's an area that doesn't necessarily have one or two agents doing a lot of the business. Now that's not to say you can't break into a market. If one agent is dominating that area in fact you can do quite well especially if you're able to nudge that agent out but it can take a little bit more time. So off the bat if you're new at geo farming choose a smaller area that is less farmed next you want to make sure that the home turnover rate. Well some will say that it should be about five or six percent but I think you can get away with it even if it's like 4 or 5 percent in that realm. You want to make sure that homes are selling. Now this number can vary. If you're in a luxury area where your average price is over 2 million your turnover rate might be less than 2 percent 1 to 2 percent if that. And that can still make an awesome farm if you're in an area with a lower price point and there's lots of activity then you definitely want to shoot up for around that 6 percent. What I recommend as a rule of thumb is shoot for about 4 percent 4 to 5 percent. And basically what that means is you take the number of homes in the area and you take the number of homes that sold over the last year and you want that number to be around 4 or 5 percent or so if it's a little lower that's all right. It's a little higher that's fine too.
[00:04:16] Next in choosing your farm area. Start with an area where you can really farm that neighborhood in person. So we're talking 250 to 500 homes. Reason being is you don't want to blow the budget. If you have a huge budget to work with great you can go up from there. But if you have more of a limited budget which most people when they're getting into geo farming have a limited budget shoot for about 250 to 500 homes. Reason being is you can end up door knocking these homes on a monthly or bi monthly basis. And that means that you can actually get face to face with these people. Also the numbers are low enough that when you're sending out unaddressed mail it's not necessarily going to break the bank. What I recommend there is look at your postal walk areas select an area about 250 or 500 homes within a community and within one postal walk. Reason being is you can send unaddressed mail to that postal walk plus you can also doorknock that neighborhood. So that's choosing the right farm.
[00:05:15] Next you want to create a farming budget. You want to create a budget where you're able to hit each home about two times a month. Now I'd recommend you use a combination of unaddressed mail door knocking and then also consistent. Facebook and Google ads now don't worry about scrambling to write all this down. Just head to the show notes of course we have all of this in the show notes so you can follow along you can create your own farming plan from there. We even have a one year plan so you can follow this actually just to a tee if you like. Next. Number three is committing to the successful farm so you may have heard this story before but when I first got into farming I farmed twice before I found the right farm. First off I just jumped into a community where I sold a few homes completely wasted my money did not know what I was doing got a few like very very cold leads went nowhere. It was really a big flop. So I said OK you know what. I'm going to learn from this next time I'm going to choose the proper area and I'm going to be a lot more consistent with it. Well I guess I'm a little bit of a slow learner because I did this again different community ran a couple of different campaigns and then quit lost the consistency the consistency is really the one thing that will make you successful when it comes to geo farming. After that I did pick a better Farm. I was more consistent with it and I was prepared for one year of spending and time effort without any results. That's what I was preparing to. That's what I was committing to and that is when I really started to notice some big things happen from geo farming. But those first two attempts were absolute flops. And the reason is is I lacked the consistency. I just threw a campaign out there and then hoped that somebody would call me instead with my new geo farming campaign. I was very deliberate with choosing the right area hitting people consistently and committing to it for one year without any sales. That's the level of commitment that you need to have.
[00:07:18] You need to be prepared to spend time effort and money over the course of one year with zero sales. And if you're able to do that that's when you'll start to reap the rewards it's like farming. You can't just plant the seed and expect the plant to grow the next day. It's going to take some time. So consistency and commitment is absolutely key with geo farming. People will start to get your unaddressed mail and the first time they look at it they're just going to throw it away the second time they're going to start to look at it a little bit more closely then you're going to knock on their door and then you're good they're going to see you at an open house and this is how you build your geo farm.
[00:07:56] Next is how are you going to stay connected to your farm. So this is making a plan again and the show notes you'll be able to see this exact plan but are you to do sold cards are you going to approve of success piece market updates. Free Home updates whatever that looks like. I highly recommend door knocking a link up in the show notes the door knocking campaign that I recommend using. Basically what you're doing is you're just going to these homes on a consistent basis and you're delivering a market update. That's it. "Knock knock knock. Here's your market update. Have a great day." Turn around and leave because all you're doing is building familiarity. What I recommend is sending out one postcard to your home of 250 to 500 homes once every month. And just with some information that maybe it's a just sold maybe it's a just listed maybe it's an upcoming open house maybe it's an event that you're going to host you're sending that out through unaddressed mail and then every single month you're also door knocking and you're providing them with a market update. So that way they're going to get unaddressed mail from you and they're also going to get a market update from you in person every single month. This will make sure that you are solidified as their agent.
[00:09:08] One quick tip here is when you are geo farming you have to really let your inner realtor come out. You have to put your face on your marketing. And the reason is is people will start to connect you with real estate. If you don't do that and you just use your logo or something like that it's going to take more time and more money for them to really understand that you are the agent behind the postcards. So I know that it's kind of this ongoing joke in our industry that we put our faces on everything but in geo farming it can really pay off.
[00:09:39] Next is always have Google and Facebook ads going to your Web site to a community search to community information so that no matter where people are looking for real estate related advice they will find you whether it's in mail whether they're opening their door or whether they're doing a Google search or on Facebook. You are targeting them and you become the agent of the community.
[00:10:01] Finally step number five the quickest way to dominate the farm is to know the inventory. So after we've done all those things after we've select did the farm and we've set our budget. We've committed to a successful farm. And we found our ways that we're going to stay in touch with our farm. Finally number five is no the inventory. So you're going to be seeing people you're going to be connected to your farm. You're gonna be out door knocking at least once a month. You're gonna be at open houses. You're going to be at events your face is going to be everywhere. And you know that questions going to come up when you find somebody and when you meet somebody within that community is how is the market when you say you're X community specialist they're going to say oh how's the market in X community. So you better be able to answer that question and that comes through knowing the inventory and with knowing the inventory comes increased confidence.
[00:10:52] My final tip on knowing the inventory is preview properties. So make sure that you're going to listings you're previewing them you're actually going through the homes and that way you will know them better than anybody else.
[00:11:05] Thank you so much for listening this episode I really appreciate. I really hope that this helps with geo farming. If you have any questions don't hesitate to reach out Michael at revrealestateschool. I will always get back to you it takes me a little bit of time but I will always get back to you. Thanks again for listening. Remember if you want to ask a top producer anything all you do is write in view the show head over to our Website. Let us know what you did that in the free coaching section and you can have a chat with a top producer. Thanks so much for listening and we'll see you in the next lesson.
[00:11:33] This episode of Rev real estate school. Come to a close. Thank you for tuning in. We'll see you back here for the next lesson.