Real Estate Rainmakers Vol. 8 – Justin Ippoliti
Real Estate Marketing Secrets from the Nation's Top Producers
Looking for powerful new real estate marketing strategies to grow your business? You’re in the right place.
Every week, CityBlast asks one of the world’s top agents to dish up their closely-guarded secrets to Realtor® marketing success in a ’21 Questions’ format. They’ll reveal powerful real estate agent marketing strategies, and help draw a roadmap to understanding exactly how to get to the top of the game.
Sound good? Without further delay, here’s one of the top 1,000 ranked Realtors® in the nation, Justin Ippoliti of Shorewest Realtors, with his top real estate marketing tips and tricks!
1) Tell us what market you work in, and how long you’ve been in real estate.
I work in the Milwaukee market. I am going on 6 years practicing real estate.
2) Tell us how you got started in real estate?
I moved back to Milwaukee after completing law school and bought my first home in 2008. I was captivated by the home buying process, became nearly obsessive about monitoring market activity even long after I closed, and thought it might be good to consider a career exploration
3) What drew you to the real estate industry?
I’m a numbers guy, so I was drawn in by the data, the listings, following market activity. I have a background in contracts and sales, so it just seemed like something that fit my skillset very well.
4) When you began your career, what was your biggest challenge?
I was teaching fulltime when I started real estate. I loved real estate from the day I started and had to find balance with my other career and other life activities when I wanted to throw myself into real estate fully (and pretty much did anyway!)
5) What role does technology play in your business?
It’s the backbone of everything in these times. Whether it is the smartphone for communicating, sending listings, tracking activity, to computer-based programs like DocuSign and iPad offer drafting. There are not 10 minutes a productive agent can be detached from technology if you want to stay on top of things!
6) What are the top tools you couldn’t live without?
I became an agent initially just so I could have access to MLS because I was obsessed, so definitely that. Docusign and electronic offers are a lifesaver that would be hard to live without.
7) If you could give just one tip to yourself as a new agent, what would it be?
Every relationship and deal is vital to the big picture. Treasure every single one because it will pay off in buckets down the road.
8) What’s the best secret strategy you’ve ever discovered?
Never shy away from opportunities because that is where many agents miss out. “I won’t show in that area” or “I won’t work with foreclosures” or “I don’t do commercial”….lines that I’ve heard from many agents that I have NEVER uttered, and it has helped me build my business.
9) What’s the best way to build a long-lasting client base?
Keep in people’s field of vision at all times. People will forget about you if you let them, and their deals will go with them. Mailings, social media, phone calls. I will not let the month a client decides to make a change be the month they are not hearing from me!
10) What is the biggest challenge that prevents others from becoming a top producer?
Life distractions. Being a top producer takes focus, daily invested work, hunger, and tenacity. A high percentage of agents are not coming into real estate with that drive. Production directly follows effort and drivenness.
11) How do you think mobile devices have changed the real estate marketing world?
It has, in a lot of ways, taken homebuying from an agent-centric practice, “here are listings I want to show you,” to a buyer-centric practice, “these are the homes I found that I want to see.” I think it allows an agent to work with more clients and streamline business practices to increase numbers exponentially.
12) How do you think social media has changed the industry?
For me, just keeping up with my sphere and the events in their lives is so much easier with social media. People you would easily lose touch with, or lose active connection with are able to be easily maintained. Also noticing changes in their lives (job transfer, the birth of a child) are great ways to be ahead of the game with real estate opportunities.
13) What’s your best go-to method for selling a listing fast?
We have an amazing independent brokerage of 1000 agents. More often than not, if I need something sold fast, one of them has a buyer ready to go!
14) How do you generate new leads?
I use realtor.com for buyer leads, my listings to generate leads, and our relocation department brings in leads for us every day.
15) How do you feel about competition between agents?
I think it is a realistic part of any business where there is a limited commodity of clients and inventory. I don’t believe in any sense of entitlement, even if it is my mother selling a house. If I am given the opportunity to work with a client and someone else makes a better pitch, hat’s off to them. I need to improve my message. Now, there is a big difference between competition and ethicality, but that’s a rant for another day.
16) What’s one technology that doesn’t exist yet that you would love to see emerge in real estate marketing?
Home entry technology is coming along (Sentrilock, etc) but I would love to see a technology that doesn’t involve fumbling around with lock boxes in negative 5-degree weather in Wisconsin winter.
17) What separates a good agent from a great one?
Passion and work ethic. People have to always feel like they are your priority and that they are getting the best service money can buy. Clients use me because they know I live, eat, and breathe real estate, and love every second of it.
18) What’s your best advice for marketing real estate services to Millennials?
Make real estate fun. Home buying is a great adventure. Sure the world is a big scary place and the commitment of a 30-year mortgage is a huge step, but it beats putting money into some uncaring landlord’s pockets every month and is the best avenue to long-term wealth!
19) What do you think is most important when developing an online real estate marketing presence?
The more places I can have my name, picture, and evidence of success (testimonials, great listings) the more it will sink in that I am the agent to work with. I think a lot of times reaching people online is right place/right time, so I think it is consistently putting oneself out there in as many venues as possible.
20) What words do you live by?
Write it in!
21) What’s your endgame? What are you working toward in life/real estate?
I want a core client base that relies on me for their life of real estate purchases. That when they go to upgrade in 10 years, that they wouldn’t even consider using another realtor. It is a long-term business approach that I am carefully building and crafting every day. The best agents in my office are established and 100% referral. I’m not there yet, but every day I am improving my craft.