I write this post not from a position of authority, but from one of inquisitiveness. There is A LOT of branding going on in real estate; branding of the brokerage, branding of the agent, branding of a blog, even branding of a specific listing. Recently, as part of the reinvention of my own brokerage and blog, I’ve begun to look at my personal branding (or, shall I say, lack thereof).
I’ve always taken the position that Realtor pictures on cards, signs and collateral is, in a way, cheesy (sorry guys, I know some of you are getting mad just about now). More like a used car salesman than the professional I consider myself to be. I also ascribed to the idea that our services are more about the client and not about us and the message should be the same… Butttt, when I look at some of the top producers out there (in CGI), I see that most of them incorporate their personal brand strongly into all of their materials. Their image and their name are often paramount. Maybe this means I should reconsider my position.
Pros of a non-agent centric brand
- focus on the client, not on the agent
- it’s sell-able (ie sell your biz when you move on, it won’t be handicapped by the missing figurehead)
- it’s less salesy
- easier to implement a team approach
Pros of an agent centric brand
- People identify strongly with a figurehead
- People remember that picture, and will recall it when the time for real estate rolls around
- A picture is worth a thousand words
A few qualifiers in this discussion, I am NOT talking about rehashing old and outdated photos, I’m talking about professional well designed personal agent branding that does incorporate the agent’s picture and name and main elements of the sales brand. I have seen some agents do this really really well.
What is your opinion, pro and con, of incorporating a strong personal brand into your real estate marketing? I’d love to hear it!