How to Succeed in a Competitive Industry
It was during a lull in the stream of visitors to the exhibition on Saturday evening. One of the real estate agents from the neighbouring booth wandered over to ours and asked, out of curiosity, what our website was about. Our team, of course, were more than happy to explain to the ‘uncle’, who was a property agent with (probably) more years of experience than I have been alive. In return, we also obtained some important feedback from him about what makes a real estate agent stand out from his/her peers within a highly competitive and saturated industry. Since sharing is caring, we’re here to share his advice so that you too, can strive to succeed and excel within the real estate profession in Malaysia.
Perhaps an alternative, more accurate, title for this article should be “Advice From a Seasoned Real Estate Agent to Other Real Estate Agents on How To Succeed in the Malaysian Property Industry”, but that would be too long and you’d probably fall asleep before you finish reading the title.
Now, on with the points!
Have quality listings
This means quality over quantity when you post your listings online. Lay out the details and specifications of your listed property clearly with no, or at least minimal, spelling mistakes. You can also add in some personal notes and recommendations, which will leave a good impression on viewers and potential buyers, thus increasing your chances of getting a lead.
Provide accurate details for listings
If a property is 982 sq ft, list it exactly as it is and don’t round it up to 1,000 sq ft just to make it sound bigger. The same goes for other specifications such as the condition of the property (don’t exaggerate or mislead), number of rooms, location, facilities, etc.
Provide quality photos
Having good quality photos is an important factor that is often neglected by real estate agents when posting their listings, especially online. Thanks to digital cameras and smartphones with high definition capabilities, it should be easy for real estate agents to snap multiple photos of the property they are selling. Having listings with blur or pixelated photos will put off any potential clients from clicking on your listing and cost you valuable leads that could have translated into a successful transaction.
Read our tips on how to take better real estate photos and increase your chances of sealing a deal.
The more photos, the better
When it comes to photos in property listings, the more photos you have, the more interest it will generate, as it allows the potential buyer to have an idea of how the property looks like. Having 1 – 2 photos simply doesn’t allow the buyer to have a good grasp of what the property is like; whereas having 5 – 10 (or more) photos showing the exterior as well as various shots of the interior of a property will increase their confidence and convince them to check out the place personally. Most people are attracted by visual images and having more photos is an added advantage.
Intrigued so far? Well, this listing for a condominium unit in Damanara Perdana is an example of a good listing that checks all the points listed above.
Don’t re-use the same photos for different listings
However, even though having more photos is a welcome bonus in any property listing, you have to make sure you don’t keep using the same photos for every listing you post. If you are selling multiple units within the same apartment or condominium, you can use the same exterior photograph, but make sure that the interior views are different in order to differentiate the units and give a good impression to potential buyers.
Advertising: Online vs Offline
There’s a reason why advertising is one of the most effective (and lucrative) businesses in the world. No matter if it’s online or offline advertising, real estate agents have to put some effort into making sure their listings are seen by their target market. Online advertising can include postings on property listing websites, blog/website/Facebook ads and email newsletters, while the conventional method of distributing flyers, newspaper/magazine advertisements and even property roadshows are good ways to increase recognition and visibility.
Don’t double or multiple post
While this can be an annoying habit in online forums, when it comes to online property listings, avoid posting multiple entries of the same property with varying prices just to increase the number of listings. This will not only confuse buyers who are searching for the property, but also cause them to doubt the agent’s credibility and trustworthiness.
Remember, quality over quantity when it comes to property postings!
Remove old or sold listings
Don’t you just hate it when you buy something online, only to be told afterwards that the item is sold out or no longer available? People are understandably upset or angry when they find out. That is why agents should always keep track of their property transactions, and remove sold listings. Old listings should also be removed or updated so that buyers are able to browse your listings with confidence.
Don’t be a cheapskate
Everybody loves a good bargain, but sometimes, you cannot afford to be stingy when it comes to advancing your professional career. Invest some money in a good suit for meeting clients, sign up for seminars and workshops to improve your real estate knowledge, subscribe to property newsletters, do some advertising to create awareness of your personal brand, maybe even purchase a good camera for taking quality photographs!
Let me include some blatant advertising by saying that our Estate123 Premium Membership gives you access to loads of useful features, including unique QR codes for listings and a customized introduction video, that can help to improve your personal marketing tools and increase your listings’ visibility to buyers and investors.
He ended with this summary:
As a real estate agent, if you want to be successful, you cannot afford to be lazy. Hard work and determination will bring you far, and you have to take pride in your job in order for it to show in your efforts. Just like how people buy property to invest, you have to invest in yourself and your profession in order to achieve the success that you aim for.
Wise words indeed.
*This is a series of short articles from our Maspex 2015 Penang experience. Although the exhibition focuses on secondary property and its corresponding market, most (if not all) of the information here is applicable to the Malaysian property market within the proper context. We hope you find these articles helpful and interesting, regardless of whether you are a real estate agent, property investor, or just a member of the public trying to learn more about property and real estate in Malaysia.