The Zebra Blog

Safari Real Estate Coaching Comes to Seattle Area This Fall!


We are very excited to announce the return of Safari, our premier real estate coaching event. Our September Safari was widely attended and a great success. Will we see you in Issaquah at our last Safari this year?

October 21st & 22nd – Issaquah, WA

For ever a decade our passion has been to help real estate agents become more successful. Come, have fun, improve your skills and discover You-nique Technique: Five Steps to Thrive! This is a free, fun and educational two-day real estate coaching experience that will change your business and help take you to the next level!

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Don’t Let Vertical Homes Shrink Your Buyer Pool

tall building

During my Club Zebra call this week, I had a wonderful question from my client Laurie Way about how to market and sell unique properties. She mentioned that she often has multi-level properties listed, which are abundant in her Seattle real estate market. Her challenge is that open houses are not effective as the open house format accentuates the number of stairs (rather than accentuating the other great features of the property!), due to potential buyers spending much of their time climbing the stairs.

This question took me right back to my days of selling new construction, particularly three and four level townhomes. When you have a property with multi-levels you have to be very careful not to present the home as an adult exercise facility (which is how it can appear when potential buyers are touring the home and have to climb four flights of stairs). It is critical that you slow the buyer down on each level so they can experience what it will feel like to actually live in the house on a daily basis. The challenge with open houses and buyer showings on multi-level properties is that usually the buyers and the agent go through the home quickly because there is nothing to slow them down or no particular feature to pay special attention to.       Read more »

Ask Denise: Advertising in Small Publications

Denise Lones

Q:  Denise, I have been approached by the local high school asking if I want to advertise in their basketball booster program. I can put a business card size ad in the booklet. Do you think this is something I should do?

A:  I can’t tell you the number of times I have been asked a question like this. If you are asking me if you should randomly put an ad in a publication that is small and probably will be competing with several other real estate agents, the answer would be no. However, here is where I would say yes:       Read more »

The Lead Generation Triangle

Lead Gen Triangle

Whenever agents ask me what the best kind of lead generation method is I have to answer with the same two words every time … it depends.

Great lead generation depends on so many factors and it has to match your personality, your skill level and your interest level. If you have no interest in sitting at open houses then you should not be doing that for your lead generation method. You won’t be able to sustain them and your energy at the open house will be low. Buyers that come through the open house will feel your low energy and your results will reflect that.

Lead generation has to be something that you can sustain over a period of time and you need to have the skills to be effective at that particular type of lead generation. For example, if you are not good at writing and you don’t enjoy it then I wouldn’t recommend you write a weekly blog.

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Ask Denise: Listing Presentation Boards

Denise Lones

Q:  Denise, I have been thinking about having your company create some listing presentation boards that you have written about. I love this idea, as it will surprise and wow homeowners. However, I sell a wide range of homes – some are small and modestly-priced while others are large waterfront estates. I have different marketing plans for these types of properties. What do you recommend?

A:  Great question! Many agents have a different marketing plan for different types of houses. Therefore, I recommend that you have two sets or you have a standard set that you show every seller, but then you show your luxury marketing program for those homeowners who have a higher end property. While you may have items such as:

  • House flyer
  • Just listed card
  • Special feature card
  • Internet listing syndication
  • And standard database marketing

for your standard seller, you may have other items for luxury marketing that may include:

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Design Spotlight: Collage of Textures

Collage of Textures design

Today’s design spotlight features the newly refreshed Instant Identity branding design, “Collage of Textures.” Sharp angles, crisp black, and geometric shapes give a futuristic feel to this dynamic design. Silver and blue space-age textures provide a collage of images and graphic visuals. Contemporary fonts and text treatments (including vertical text!) complement the next-gen appeal of this one-of-a-kind branding design.

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Ask Denise: Soccer Team Niche

Denise Lones

Q:  Denise, I read your Zebra Report last week on niche marketing. I think I would like to focus on my kid’s soccer team and work with their parents. How do I make the jump from “Jessie’s Mom” to “Real Estate Agent”?

A:  This is a fantastic idea and one that has been very successful for several of my clients. There are a few different options to consider:

  • Team sponsorship
  • Hosting a pizza party
  • Showing up to every game with your REALTOR® pin or your company shirt
  • Advertising on the team website

Of course, just showing up and participating in good, old-fashioned networking is also a great option! The key is determining the best fit for you.

Your Niche Marketing Road Map

road with sign

If you enjoyed my Zebra Report last week on targeting a niche market, you are going to love this week’s article on taking the steps to actually hone in on a niche market and determine a marketing plan to get your phone ringing!

If you are thinking that the idea of a niche market could be a good fit for you, we recommend you follow these four steps.

STEP 1: Look at your resources. Your resources are your area in terms of geography and people and your experience. For example, say you live in our area – the Pacific Northwest. Because of geography, you probably aren’t going to want to specialize in desert-style properties. Instead, there are opportunities for waterfront and waterview properties (both fresh water and salt water).

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