MY PLAN (The Tristan Ahumada Plan) for breaking into a farm area: NOT FOR EVERYONE! I originally posted this to our Lab Coat Agents Facebook Group. These 20 strategies are used for breaking into a farm. I came up with this list after testing all of these tools out separately. When you read through the list pick and choose which ones are good for you. The purpose of the list is to identify things you would do. You could also pick all of the numbered items below. Make sure you follow my blog by clicking on the “+” symbol at the bottom right.
1. Research what to expect for sales – Check local MLS to see how many homes sold in the tract/area. Check to see if there is an agent that dominates the area you want to farm. If there is an agent who does well check to see if they have the marketing skills that you possess. Also check to see if their listings are expiring or being canceled, because if they are you have a good shot at breaking in. Look for a 5% turnover at least (in your median price range) In the luxury market look for a 3% turn over.
2. Pick a number of homes I will be farming. This will depend on a few different factors. I live in an area that has approximately 2400 homes and it’s part of a tract. Doorknocking all of these in 3 months is a challenge, so I would recommend making your farm no more than 1000 homes to start, maybe even start with 500. My first farm in 2004 when I first started doorknocking was 400 homes. It was manageable to walk through routinely and I could mail to it without going broke.
3. Sign up with a Post Card Mailing Company – Like GeographicFarm – Matthew Morrison
or Corefact. Mail out 3 times a month for 6 months, 2 times for 3 months and 1 time a month for as long as you farm there. This will help with you breaking in. Even if they throw your card in the trash you will slowly be making an impact, especially when you start doing #8, #9 and #16. When you mail out make sure you have a unique selling proposition as well, Coach Michael Hellickson from Club Wealth emphasizes this a lot.
4. Create a website for that specific Farm – RealGeeks, TorchX, Placester – Jeff Manson Seth Price Jesse Friedman. Here is where it takes time. What I have noticed over the last few years is that people want to work with an agent that is an expert in the area. They want to make sure you know the area well. It’s been a challenge for me because I cover such a wide range. So what I have started doing is creating local websites. Pick one website provider and only focus in a small city, like Encino. Once you have that going then start expanding on the communities inside of Encino. Start adding a directory of places to eat, start adding videos of places to visit and make sure that you talk to neighbors and blog about your encounters with neighbors.
5. Create a community page or join the local community page – In your website create a community page and on Social Media do the same. Go to Facebook, NextDoor, and Instagram and start a page for your community. When you meet neighbors, invite them to the page and also make sure you advertise your social media pages so local people can join. If there is a local community page already be sure to join it and follow the rules, post routinely and offer value to the people who frequent it.
6. Create Facebook ads that target the community to bring people to your landing pages to capture sellers and buyers, EZLEAD Pages does this Juan Gabriel Molina. Be sure to look into creating Facebook Lead Ads so that you can advertise your community pages or blog to the local areas. Do the same when doing #8.
7. Create a Blog for the community and drive traffic by putting URL on facebook ads, mailers and door-knocking. Go back and read #4 and add that to this. Driving traffic to your sites is key so make sure you tell the community about it. The fastest way to do this is through Facebook Marketing. Boosting your ads through Boost or Ads Manager is the easiest.
8. Have MEGA OPEN houses there (If you don’t have listings there, find agents that have one and ask to hold it open). Mega Open Houses involve the following.
- Pre-Open House – Send out invites to neighbors 6 days before the event (Can’t afford invites? Door knock them with a black and white flyer inviting them to “Neighbors Only Pre-Open House Gathering” with Food and Beverages (No Money? Have your escrow company partner with you for food) have a Taco Truck there, BBQ, In and Out Truck, etc…
- Go to ColeRealtyResource.com, download all the email addresses for all the neighbors and upload them to Facebook. Create a custom Audience and this way you can target them with your MEGA OPEN HOUSE!
- If you don’t want to do a Custom Audience on Facebook just target the surrounding area and Boost your post.
- Call all the neighbors 2 days before, asking if they got the invite and remind them to
- During Open House – Have a sign in sheet with names already on there or use Open
Home Pro. Have your Escrow Officer there, your lender, and anyone else that can help with all the people that will show up.
- Pay someone $50 to put up 25-50 Open House signs with Flags at all entrances in the neighborhood and off the freeway ramp.
- After The Open House – add all leads to your database, text them thanking them for stopping by and attach a picture of the outside of the house. Use Lion Desk, it’s easy to mass text with this tool.
- Make a quick video of the home and send it through BombBomb and thank them for stopping by. This way you can track if they open the email. You can also text them the video if you don’t have BombBomb.
9. Doorknock around the farm once every THREE months. Drop off a flyer with comps or local events or local news. Your flier can be black and white and simple, it’s all about the face to face. One time I dropped off the ugliest black and white flier and I was asked to come to a listing appointment to a $4Million home. It was my 4th or 5th month in Real Estate. I was sweating bullets and I didn’t get the listing, but I did learn a whole bunch that day.
10. Using Cole Realty Resource (Tyler Steenken) to call the farm area about new listings, sold listings and open houses. As I recently found out you can also use SalesDialers too. Make it a routine to call around new listings that pop up. Listings that are not yours are good to call too as long as you disclose that it’s not your listing. (Talk to your broker before you do this though).
11. As you doorknock be sure to gather emails so that you can start creating a database within your farm. As you get emails make sure to use BombBomb and send videos to people you meet. It’s easy to track conversion this way. Steve Pacinelli.
12. Creating 1 local video a month highlighting a restaurant, and area or a place to visit and blasting it on Facebook to the community and by email to your database in the farm. One great example of this is what Sergio Gonzalez does. Click here for Video.
13. Use Iping to connect with the owners of the farm you are looking to dominate in. With IPing, you can deliver a customized, digital message DIRECTLY to the homeowners you are targeting. They call it “digital door knocking.” Sharon McCormick
14. When you take a listing (Or you have written permission to market a local home from the broker) post on Instagram and use local Hashtags and popular hashtags in the area. Look at your popular hashtags.
15. Visiting Brokers Open’s and open houses in your farm every week, so you connect with the local agents to find out about the pocket listings they have coming up. This will make you a pro in the area. Stay consistent with this and make sure you dress to impress because people judge you by how you look before they know who you are.
16. Create events for the community to invite your farm to – Movies at the park, Pot lock block parties, Family events, food drive, Community Garage Sales.
17. Use Jessie Beaudoin CallAction phone number to put on all FARM material and websites so you can track leads coming in and ROI. Instantly create a local or toll-free phone number for each of your marketing channels to automatically track every inbound call that is seamlessly routed to your phone. Check out CallAction
18. After you meet a neighbor and they give you any inclination that they will sell in the next 1-2 years drop them into a drip campaign in SendOut Cards. Send them brownies to start. Who doesn’t like a brownie? I love them! Meet neighbors and connect with them, be sure to send out a Sendoutcard to them so they can remember you and so you STAND OUT – www.sendoutcards.com/lca Right Gayle Zientek
20. Create a Podcast for the area. Jay Lieberman has a great podcast for the area he covers. Start by giving value back to the neighborhood. It’s like Gary V says, Jab Jab Jab Right Hook and you know Nick Baldwin and Tristan Ahumada always talk about this.
(Before implementing any of this please ask your Broker for your state guidelines and rules)