When it comes to developing a brand, one of the most important aspects you want to build is trust. Most big brands go a long way to show that they’re trustworthy so that people will work with them, buy their products, and even be loyal to them.
Real estate is no different. As an agent, you need to show that you’re trustworthy so people will want to work with you.
As an agent, there’s 2 parts to that:
- You brokerage brand needs to be trustworthy to the consumer.
- Your personal real estate brand needs to be trustworthy to the consumer.
And the two of them are definitely connected to each other.
Your brokerage is a representation of you and your brand, so they also need to be trustworthy. While you should be building a personal brand that’s separate from your brokerage, even if you do that well, your brokerage is still tied to you and your brand. If you’re brokerage has earned itself a negative reputation, then just by using their logo in your marketing, it diminishes your brand (and vice-versa of course).
But as we all know, trust is hard to build: it’s earned, not bought, and it certainly doesn’t happen over night.
So what can you do to build a personal real estate brand that’s worth trusting?
1. Create a Consistent Experience
The first thing people will notice about your brand is how it looks and whether they connect with it on a visual level. Once you connect with someone on a visual level, and they like your brand, they probably like you as well, so it’s important to keep things consistent across everything that you do.
That means that everything you do to market yourself, from your business card to your website and your social media profiles to your listing presentation should all look, feel, and sound the same way.
No matter where people go or how they interact with you, everything should look and feel the same. Establishing similarities and consistencies across your marketing materials builds familiarity with the people that see it and interact with it, which eventually can lead to trust.
Having branding guidelines can really help build consistency as they set the expectations and rules around how your brand can and can’t be used. Although branding guidelines are different as there aren’t really any specific rules around what they should include, at minimum, most branding guidelines have: a mission statement, fonts and font rules, color palette and color rules, your main logo (with an outline of how that logo should be represented visually), and any additional logos, brand marks, or patterns that are used as part of the branding. They can of course be more complex, but these core elements will give anyone that looks at it guidelines around how it can be used, and most importantly, help build consistency across all of your materials no matter who creates it.
★ Want to learn more about the importance of branding in marketing? Take a look at these posts:
- Why Agents Need Brand Guidelines, Not Just a Logo
- Why Personal, Targeted Marketing Means Better Real Estate Leads
- Planning an End-to-End Brand Experience for Your Real Estate Business
2. Create an Emotional Connection with Your Audience
Emotions play a big role in who we choose to work with, so building an emotional connection with your audience is a great way to get them to feel connected to your brand and eventually come to trust it.
There are a lot of emotions that a brand can trigger: happiness, comfort, passion, competitiveness, even fear.
When it comes to branding, there are a lot of ways to trigger an emotional action, whether that’s through the color and font choices or even certain words or themes that are used throughout your material.
By understanding your target audience’s way of thinking and what’s important to them, you can use emotional branding in your content, social media, marketing material, and basically, everywhere else, to build a connection to your audience so they’ll eventually trust you.
3. Build a Solid Review Strategy
To get quality leads, you need your audience to be able to trust you and believe in you before they even reach out to you, and a big way to do that is through reviews. As an agent, you should have a strong online review strategy in place that builds trust for you across multiple platforms.
Whether it’s a review on your Google Business page, Facebook, LinkedIn, Zillow, or anywhere else, having as many positive reviews as you can in as many places as you possibly can is a key part of a strong and authoritative online presence.
Having positive reviews online is a lot like having a referral strategy that operates in the background 24-7. Chances are, without you even knowing it, people are researching you and other people’s experiences working with you, and what they find out can make or break whether you get contacted or not based on if you seem reliable, professional, and trustworthy.
★ Want to learn more about building your online review strategy? Have a look at these posts:
- Why Every Agent Needs an Online Review Strategy
- Why Every Agent Needs a Google Business Page
- How to Deal With (and Remove) Fake, Negative Google Reviews
- How to Respond to Negative Reviews in 3 Easy Steps
4. Create Value Through Empowerment
When you’re building an authentic brand, it’s important to remember that your target audience is the hero of the story, not you. And that’s where empowerment comes in; a great strategy for building trust with your audience is to empower them to be able to make decisions on their own, even if it means not working with you.
By building out a solid content strategy and useful resources that relies heavily on educating people, you’ll be empowering them to make better decisions, which builds trust and eventually, qualified leads.
Sometimes, that will mean that clients won’t want to work with you because you’ve empowered them to make a decision to work with someone else or even do it on their own, and that should be ok because that means they probably weren’t within your target audience and weren’t a good fit for you in the first place.
By building out a solid empowerment strategy, you’ll eventually build a big list of followers that trust you for your insight and guidance, often, even before you’ve ever talked to them or knew they existed.
★ You can learn more about our empowerment strategy, and why it’s important to us, right here.
Want to get better, more qualified leads and build your authority? Our Inbound Marketing Guide is a walkthrough of the overall philosophy of inbound marketing, why it’s effective, and how you can build it into your own real estate marketing strategy to get better marketing results.