There are many words one can associate with Florida-based Realtor® team The Jills, including luxury, elegance, and sophistication. One look at their website immediately conveys all of that through their expert use of minimalist design and beautiful imagery. 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. This includes marketing themselves as a team and using their shared name as a clever hook. As such, their branding has led to massive sales. You can follow their lead and do the same.
What is branding?
Simply put, branding is the visual representation of your brand, and your brand is who you/your company are, what you offer, and how you make people feel when they think about you.
A common misconception is that branding refers solely to design – such as your colors and logo – but it’s much more than that. Branding is about the feelings and qualities you evoke through strategic use of colors, words, imagery, and content. According to The Branding Journal, “You can consider a brand as the idea or image people have in mind when thinking about specific products of a company, both in a practical and emotional way. It is therefore not just the physical features that create a brand but also the feelings that consumers develop towards the company’s [services].”
We can look to The Jills as an example. Their website is deceptively simple: they use an abundance of white space to highlight their luxury properties, and they prioritize images to reflect what their ideal customer is looking for.
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 a lot of it yourself. Plus, handling it yourself will make it much more personal! The main thing to keep in mind is how your branding can attract your dream clients. (We recently wrote a bit about dream clients here.)
If you’re not sure what works, study the branding of Realtors® you admire. What do they do that seems to work? You’ll want to make your branding unique to you, but you can use inspiration as a starting point.
Below are three essentials for branding yourself in a way that will make you the go-to Realtor® for your dream clients.
Develop a style guide
A style guide 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! According to Local Direct Network, “Reusing certain images, words and messages can create a sense of familiarity, making it more likely that people will remember your brand and (hopefully) like it.”
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 it with 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!
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 year to make one. Luckily, there are many web template builders that make it easy, including services made specifically for real estate agents! Here are a few to check out:
All these services ensure that 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.” Part of good branding is accessibility, so you’ll want to make sure that 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 first impressions with your dream clients.