8 Business Card Marketing Tips for Real Estate Investors

Business cards speak volumes about who you are, what you offer and how serious you are at marketing your real estate investing as a business. A school bell rings letting kids know class has started. Your business card is your bell announcing its time to get together too or your are ready to help people solve their problems. The following are some proven tips using business cards to increase your chances of creating and maintaining more business opportunities.

Never leave home without them. Before leaving home, your checklist should be expanded to include business cards, as part of “do I have my wallet/money, house keys, driver’s license'” etc. Any ‘per chance’ meeting is an opportunity to give out a business card. A morning run or a quick trip to the local store could be an opportunity to network in line. Make it a habit to always carry business cards. Give out your card to everyone and their mother!! My kids even have their own supply to pass out. Someone told me they taped their cards inside outhouses when they attend fairs, festivals, concerts and frequently received calls from them. Hey – whatever works!

Insert a business card when mailing bill payments. Bills contain advertisements. Why can’t you advertise your skills or services the same way? My reasoning behind this is inspired by a movie. The movie, entitled “6 Degrees of Separation” points out that we are 6 people away from knowing someone of influence. Eric Horvitz of M Microsoft Research and Jure Leskovec of Carnegie Mellon University analyzed 30 billion conversations among 240 million people using Microsoft Instant Messenger in June 2006. It turned out that the average path length, or degree of separation, among the anonymous users probed was 6.6. You could be 6 people away from knowing the President of the United Sates, your favorite movie star or someone who is in a position to hire your skills or services. Each of us knows someone, who knows someone (X6.6 on average), who we need to know…

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Use proper business card etiquette. Whenever you give a business card, ask for a business card. When given a business card, don’t just take it and place it in your pocket. Make the person feel important by looking at their card for a few seconds. You might see something that could be a topic of discussion. Write comments on the card such as date, location and common points of interest. These comments will prove valuable when following up with that person. This also demonstrates a sincere interest in the other person. Then place it in your wallet. This lets them know they reside in a special place with you. “Skill with People” by Les Giblin is a book that expands on this approach. Make people feel important, in order to make yourself important to them.

Be generous. Give business cards out to everyone, including family and friends. Hoarding your business cards only makes your wallet feel full, not your bank account.

Ask for referrals. When giving a business card, people feel more comfortable when you ask; “I would appreciate a referral, if you know anyone that could use my services”. Give them 2 cards.

Maximize every “per chance” meeting. You never know when you might meet someone who can help you. Small social events, like a birthday party your son is going to, could produce unexpected encounters with people you will want to network with. You never know who you might meet

Place yourself at the right place at the right time. Have you ever been to a REI club meeting to find out you were not really given an opportunity to pass out your cards. Volunteering for REI speaking and networking events for big name speakers has been a very successful resource for me to grow my business. Zig Ziglar, one of the most successful sales trainers in the world says “if you help enough people get what they want in life, you will get what you want in life”.

Do consistent follow up. Immediately after a meeting a person who could be part of your REI business, I suggest you “snail mail” a hand written note thanking the person for their time. Insert your business card. Now you’re in the driver’s seat in standing out from other people. If you get no response and were expecting one, do it again. Patience and persistence pays off. . Make it a habit to do this once a week. Remember ‘6 Degrees of Separation’. You just never know. Remember, people open invitation type envelopes faster than any others.

Reasons Why Every Serious Real Estate Investor Needs a WordPress Website

WordPress and Real Estate are a match made in tech marketing heaven if you ask me. WordPress’s flexibility, seo elements, and relative ease of use, coupled with an unbelievable community of users (and corresponding online documentation), have allowed it to become the world’s most popular content management system.

And real estate investors in droves are using wordpress every day as the backbone for their entire online web marketing efforts. But there seems to be a relative low number of investors using wordpress to build web entities. Instead of going into why this is so, I think it might be better to illustrate the reasons why most real estate investors should consider scrapping their current site in favor of something wordpress based.

Save Money on Hosting

I recently had a conversation with a real estate investor who was paying one of the reputable real estate web vendors $300/month to have his site hosted. Ouch! With wordpress, hosting can be relatively cheap. ($7/month with bluehost or hostgator would probably suffice for most investors.)

Save Money on Website Maintenance Fees

The same investor who was paying $300 for hosting was paying $100 an hour every time he needed something on his site edited. With wordpress, learning to create or edit content is generally fairly simple. Sure, there are things that can be complicated for most real estate investors, but usually finding free or inexpensive wordpress help is no big deal. (Try typing “need wordpress help” over at http://search.twitter.com to see what I mean).

WordPress Plugins

free wordpress real estate investing websitesBottom line. WordPress plays with everything! Want to embed a youtube gallery with your latest posts? No problem. How about image links to all your social profiles. No problem. IDX integration. Yeah, usually not a problem. Lead capture forms? Free. Just Sold Stats? Free. (With Zillow or similar integration.) Google Maps, Analytics, Chat, etc. You bet. Lots of free toys play nicely with open source, free wordpress.

Inexpensive Design

There are thousands of wordpress templates out there any of which would work fine with real estate. Now of course some are better than others, and I have my favorites but the bottom line is this: You don’t need to pay a designer 2, 3, 5k just to get your website skinned with wordpress. And if you don’t like your first attempt, changing themes is an unbelievably painless process.

Search Engine Optimization

WordPress is search engine friendly right out of the box. There are some awesome plugins and tweaks that can seriously enhance the search engine friendliness of your wordpress site, but stuff that a lot of professional SEO’s would charge thousands for can be had with wordpress pretty much off the shelf. (That said, you still should pursue the tweaks I’ve alluded to here.)

WordPress Has Become Sort-of a Universal Language

Meaning this, if you need something special for your real estate investor based website it will be easy to find someone who can do it, if you can’t or don’t want to. We buy ugly houses in Grand Prairie Tx.

WordPress is Extremely Conducive to the Creation of Neighborhood, Area, & “One Type Offer” Style Niche Sections.

What do I mean here? Well, let’s put it this way, if you came to me and said you needed a new “short sale” website to drive local distressed property owners to, we could build you the “site” in about 1 hour. Why? We wouldn’t really be building you a new site. With wordpress, aggregating content onto a single page, with a customizable header, nav, and sidebar – all under the same install and domain — is no big trick!