There are many words associated with Florida-based Realtor® team The Jills, some of the most prominent being luxury, elegance, and sophistication. One look at their website immediately conveys every one of these points through their expert use of minimalist design and stunning photos. It’s easy to see why they now run a multibillion-dollar agency, attracting loyal, wealthy clients.
What do The Jills have that less-successful Realtors® don’t? Memorable branding.
The Jills are comprised of Jill Hertzberg and Jill Eber, and they’ve made a (literal) name for themselves by prioritizing their branding. One of their clever hooks includes marketing themselves as a team and using their shared name as a unique brand identifier. Combined with their sleek designs conveying sophisticated luxury, their branding has led to massive sales.
Here’s how you can follow their lead and do the same.
What is branding?
If you’re looking for a simple definition, you’ve got the wrong idea. Branding is a complex representation of what you and your company are in the eyes of the market. It’s the specific feelings, sensations, and memories you evoke through strategic use of repetitive colors, words, imagery, and content. So, it’s not just the perks of your service, or even just logo and design, it’s the positive and memorable experience you are curating for your clients. Do you want clients to leave your service feeling warm and cozy or grand and luxurious? Everything you do, from your business card to your outfit, should reinforce that desired experience. We can look to The Jills as an example:
Their website is deceptively simple: they use an abundance of empty space to highlight their luxury properties, and they prioritize images to reflect what their ideal customer is looking for. High-quality, clean, and meticulous service―no question! And that’s understood from just one minute on their website.
Branding 101 for Realtors®
You don’t have to hire an expert designer or professional marketing team to tackle all your branding. Truth is, you can probably do most of it yourself. Plus, handling it yourself will make it feel more personal, which is a huge factor in developing a unique and memorable brand. When developing your brand, the main thing to keep in mind is how it can attract your dream clients. (We recently wrote about dream clients here.)
If you’re not sure what works, study the branding of Realtors® you admire. What seems to work for them? You’ll want to make your branding unique to you, but don’t be afraid to spark inspiration and learn from other successful agents.
You can even look outside of real estate; think of the imagery in your favorite TV show or the logo of your favorite clothing brand. You can pull elements from anything that fits your interests and your dream client profile.
Pull all your ideas together by gathering your favorite colors, images, and fonts in our free mood board template found in the Advanced Producer mobile app.
Make sure you are keeping the interest of your “dream client” in mind when you are building the board―once you’re done, this will help guide your brand decisions and designs.
Now it’s time to get started! Below we break down three essentials for branding yourself in a way that will make you the go-to Realtor® for your dream clients.
Develop a style guide
After your ideas and inspiration are gathered on the mood board, a smart place to start is by crafting your official style guide. This is a basic list of the colors, fonts, logo(s), messaging, and other style-related features of your branding. Whether you work independently or with a team, a style guide helps you remain consistent.
Think of a brand that is familiar to you. You can probably immediately envision at least the logo, color palette, and font type, because you’ve seen it over and over again. (The thought of the brand may even evoke a particular feeling or emotion. What feeling or emotion do you want your style elements to inspire within your dream client?)
The power of repetition in business and marketing is huge! Using the same messages and images will allow people to grow familiar with your brand and make it more memorable. Even if they are not in the market today, remembering just the colors of your logo or your memorable name will make them more likely to contact you once they are ready to buy or sell.
For some inspiring style guide examples, check out Canva.com’s “50 Meticulous Style Guides.”
Make a logo
A clean, readable logo helps to solidify your brand, but if you don’t have a lot of money to shell out for a designer, you can make your own for FREE!
Tools such as Canva.com’s ready-made logo templates make designing a logo a breeze. Simply select the logo you like and customize using your color palette and company name.
It’s a smart idea to create a few different logo variations—in particular, one with your main color palette for use on light/white backgrounds, and conversely, one that’s white or light-colored for use on dark backgrounds. Export each logo as a PNG file and choose “transparent background” if you don’t want the pesky white box around it! That way you can use your logo on just about anything—from digital to print and it will look professional and clean.
You can also hire freelancers through services such as Upwork and Fiverr relatively inexpensively. A professional designer will be able to hand you all your logo files after completion, including the design source file and logos for print and digital use.
Be sure to use your new logo on all your marketing material. Remember, the more you use it, the more people will remember it!
Create a website
A web presence is a must for all Realtors®, so if you don’t already have a website, this is the time to make one. Luckily, you have a lot of choices when it comes to easy website builders, including services made specifically for real estate agents! Here are a few to check out:
All these services ensure your website is mobile-responsive, meaning it will automatically be formatted to display properly on mobile devices. According to a joint report by the National Association of Realtors® and Google, “one-fifth of real estate-related searches happen on mobile devices,” so make sure potential leads can find you however they search.
Once you’ve put in the effort to come up with your branding, it’s important to use it everywhere―on social profiles, in your email signature, on your website, and on your print materials. Building a solid reputation doesn’t happen overnight, but with great branding, you’ll be well on your way to nailing memorable first impressions with your dream clients. Enough said―build your brand!