You can’t reach your destination if you don’t have a map to guide you. Becoming a successful real estate agent is like starting a new business, so you need a real estate marketing plan template to start off in the right direction. I’ll break down the different elements of the real estate agent marketing plan template and how it can help you streamline your marketing, budget effectively, and plan your business strategies for maximum impact in your community. Plus, I’m giving you a downloadable plan to start using it today.
1. Research & Understand Your Market
You need to understand your market to effectively fill in your real estate marketing plan template for your new business. You must learn how fast homes sell in your territory, how long it takes, and who’s buying homes in your area. Then, you’ll better understand how to reach your target market.
Research your local community to create real estate marketing plans by starting with your local MLS. You have access to your community’s data, so dive in and start researching your target market. Utilize other sources, like Realtors Property Resource (RPR), realtor.com, Homes.com, and even Zillow, to learn as much as possible about your area.
During the research phase, your goal is to:
- Narrow down your geographic farm area: This will tell you where you should focus your business, the clientele you’ll be marketing to, and what methods you should utilize to reach your target audience.
- Know your numbers (days on market (DOM) rate, absorption rates, median price, etc.): This will give you what homes are selling, how fast, and for how much. Knowing these numbers lets you effectively discuss your market with prospects.
- Understand your demographics: Learn who lives in your area to figure out how to talk to your prospects, appeal to their interests, and make valuable connections to prospects considering purchasing in your market.
- Conduct market analysis of your specific neighborhoods: Learn the median price point, size, square footage, and the local amenities of each neighborhood you want to target to get a leg up on the competition in each area. When you become the expert, you’ll stand out to your target market.
2. Uncover Your Competition
Next, learn who your competitors are in your chosen market. Audit those agents sending flyers, using social media in your city, investing in signs, bus benches, billboards, and anything else you see in your community. Study who they are and how they’re marketing themselves. If you see a gap—for example, only a few agents spend money on social media in your area—maybe that’s an opportunity for you to step up and take it over.
You can learn a lot from your competitors. The most successful ones have nailed their communications with their audience. But they may also be targeting a different audience from you. So, just because it works for them doesn’t necessarily mean it will also work for you. You have to know your audience and their preferences.
3. Create Your Mission, Vision & Values Statement
I know it sounds corny. But your mission, vision, and values (MVV) statement outlines where you want your real estate business to be in the future, how you’ll get there, and the values that will drive you. Plus, it will help you clearly articulate your business philosophy, differentiate yourself in a competitive market, and build a strong and trustworthy brand that resonates with your ideal clients.
Here’s how to create your mission, vision, and values statement.
Mission: To write your mission statement, ask yourself: Why did you get into real estate? What gets you out of bed every morning to help people buy and sell their real estate assets? Write out your answers to those questions in a way that makes a statement. That’s your mission statement.
Ex. My mission is to work with military movers relocating to my area and make their move as smooth as possible. I understand their struggles and want to do for them what I wish someone had done for me.
Vision: Craft your vision statement with a specific goal and time to accomplish it. Set your goal and give yourself a deadline.
Ex. I will become the top-producing agent in my ZIP code by the end of my third year in real estate. Our team will have the highest customer rating by the end of 2025.
Values: Your values are the core of your real estate brand. What values do you believe are important to you and your business? Some examples of values include:
Now that you have all the elements to create your mission, vision, and values, print them and post them in your office so you can visualize them daily. These statements will drive every decision you make in your business.
4. Discover Your Ideal Client
Now that you’ve learned your market and developed your MVV, it’s time to develop your client personas for buyers and sellers. If you want to build a brand that attracts your ideal clients, you need to understand who they are, their pain points, their goals, and the obstacles they face.
Start by gathering as much data as possible about your geographic farm area’s potential buyers and sellers. Here are some data points to consider:
- Family size
- Own or rent? How long?
- Personal buying/selling history
- Tech savviness
- Education level
Here are a few resources you can use to gather data to build your buyer persona:
|Median age, income, and education levels
|U.S. Census Bureau
|Percentage of buyers vs renters, education levels, marital status
|Technology use and lifestyle data
I like to give each of my personas a little backstory, a name, and a face. I go to a royalty-free photo site, like Unsplash or Pexels, and I put in the description of the person I’m looking for. When I find one that I think fits, I download and print it. I give the person a name and keep that picture near me while working on my marketing. I make sure I’m directing any content I create to that person. That’s my avatar. Grab our worksheet to help identify your ideal client by answering a few questions.
If you’ve sold any homes, your ideal client most likely lives in your current sphere of influence. You can use polls and questions in your social media to stay engaged with your network and learn more about how your sphere of influence (SOI) sees you. Use social media templates from a company like Coffee & Contracts to gain the insights you need to build a successful real estate marketing plan. With its tools, you can get valuable insights from your people, increase engagement, and create marketing content more easily. Who doesn’t love an easy button?
5. Get Clear on Your USP
Your unique selling proposition (USP) makes you different from everyone else. Know who you are, what you stand for, and who you serve. Then, you can decipher how you will stand out from your competitors.
You’ve already done the work to learn who your target audience is and who your competitors are. Let’s start researching internally to find the piece that completes the puzzle.
To identify your USP, conduct a SWOT analysis on yourself, considering your Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. Use a table format for clarity, and seek feedback from friends, family, colleagues, and past clients if you’re unsure.
After you’ve completed your SWOT analysis, you will identify what makes you unique. What can you provide that no one else can? Here are some examples:
Ex: Leveraging over 20 years of unmatched local expertise to navigate the luxury market, ensuring every client achieves their real estate dreams with unparalleled personal service and insider knowledge.
Ex: Bringing fresh energy and cutting-edge digital marketing strategies to the real estate market, I empower first-time homebuyers to navigate the buying process with confidence and ease.
6. Learn Different Marketing Strategies for Real Estate
Your marketing plan for real estate is a playground. There are many options for agents to show off their expertise, adaptability, and knowledge of the real estate market. That said, a smart marketing strategy utilizes a handful of marketing avenues with focus and intention. Choose the channels that make the most sense for you and your target market.
- Create your online profiles that allow you to be found online. Don’t overlook creating your Google Business Profile. Set up a system to ask clients to give you 5-star reviews.
- Social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn allow you to interact with your clients, sphere of influence, and future clients with engaging content.
- Email marketing is still one of the most efficient ways to connect with your database. Time spent building and nurturing your email list is time well spent.
- Most agents should have a real estate website that’s search engine optimized (SEO). The first thing your potential clients will do is look for you online. Make sure they can find your beautifully designed website that gives them more information about who you are and who you serve. Don’t DIY your site—it’s way too important. Trust an expert, like Agent Fire, to design your website. They will ensure you’re SEO-ready with an elegant, professional site that shows off your sense of style and polish.
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- Direct mail campaigns can be an excellent and cost-effective way to reach your specific neighborhoods with your marketing message.
- Print advertising includes magazines (especially for luxury markets), flyers, and brochures for your listings and brokerage.
- Networking events and experiential marketing, combined with open houses are amazing ways to stay connected in person with your community.
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- Virtual tours and augmented reality technologies can expand your reach and put you at the forefront of certain demographics.
- Influencer collaborations are awesome for cross-pollinating databases and expanding your connections. Use influencers to grow your email list fast.
7. Formulate a Budget for Your Marketing Plan
When it comes to deciding how much money to allocate to each marketing channel, there are no hard and fast rules. In fact, it will mostly depend on who your target audience is, where they are showing up, and what marketing avenue you feel most comfortable with.
The best thing to do is settle on some numbers to get started. Then, once you’ve put your plan into action, return to it in a few months and analyze your results. The general rule of thumb is to set aside around 10% of your income each month to spend on your marketing.
What Does Ten Percent Look Like?
To give you a general idea of what you might expect to spend, here’s a breakdown:
- New agents: Expect to spend around $500 to $2,000 monthly on marketing efforts. That can include basic digital marketing, branding, social media advertising, a website, and paying for some leads.
- Experienced agents (three-plus years): Expect to invest anywhere from $2,000 to $10,000 monthly on marketing efforts. This budget should cover more extensive digital marketing campaigns, high-end photography and video production, print media, and direct mail.
- Top-producing agents and teams: Expect to invest aggressively in your marketing to the tune of approximately $10,000 to $50,000 per month. That level of spending should encompass a comprehensive marketing strategy, including high-end video production, a complete lead generation system, extensive online and offline advertising, sponsorships, and employing a dedicated marketing team or hiring an agency.
When considering your budget, especially if you’re newer to the biz, utilize some or all of these cost-saving strategies to keep more money in your pocket while getting the maximum exposure for your brand and your real estate business.
Leverage Organic Social Media Traffic
- Create and share engaging content that gives value to your audience
- Lean into video content, which already gets higher engagement
- Mix it up with personal vs real estate content
Build a Referral Network
- Encourage your clients to refer you to their friends and colleagues
- Set up an automated system to ask for 5-star reviews from your past clients
- Network with local businesses, including lenders, home inspectors, contractors, and more, to refer business to each other
Optimize Your Website
- Make sure your website is searchable when your future clients are online
- Fill out your Google My Business listing with relevant real estate keywords
- Keep your blog filled with SEO-friendly keywords that drive traffic to your website
- Email is still an amazing way to reach your database
- Capture emails from your website visitors (with permission) and keep them updated with valuable content
- Use your customer relationship manager (CRM) or an email marketing platform like Mailchimp to segment your audience. Personalize your emails so your recipients only receive relevant emails from you.
- Host free homebuyers or real estate investor workshops for minimal marketing spend
- Sponsor local events, school sports clubs, or community projects for brand visibility
- Partner with local businesses to cut costs for networking or client appreciation events
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8. Set Your Goals & Timeline
Dreams become goals when you write them down. So, let’s get started building your dream business by writing down those goals and giving them deadlines.
Start with your short-term goals.
- Aim high for your annual goal. How much do you want to make in gross commission income (GCI) by the end of the year? What is your average commission per home sold? Figure out how many transactions you’ll need to close to reach your goal.
- Set your monthly and quarterly goals. Break your annual goals down by quarter and month. Reverse-engineer your goals to understand what it will take to reach them. Turn those action steps into your goals.
- Plan out your activity for the week. Reverse-engineer the results you want to achieve and draft action steps to help you achieve them. Ex. If you want to schedule two to three listing appointments each week and know that for every 20 phone calls you make, you will set one appointment, set a schedule to make the number of calls it will take to reach your goal of two to three listing appointments.
- Plan out your perfect day. Break up your day into blocks dedicated to completing certain tasks. Plan out how many phone calls you will make daily, how many emails you will send, etc. Your success lies in the details you set and implement to create your roadmap to get there.
Next, set long-term goals.
- What is your five-year plan? Where would you like your real estate business to be within the first five years? Will you hit the seven-figure mark? Build your team? Become a trainer? Buy that fancy car you’ve always dreamed of? What does success look like for you?
- What is your 10-year plan? Look farther down the road, and what do you want to accomplish in your real estate business? Will you become a broker? Open your own brokerage? Become a national trainer? Buy a new home for you and your family? Invest in your own real estate assets? The world is your oyster, so go as big as you can dream. I love creating vision boards each year instead of setting resolutions. It’s a much more visual representation of the dreams you’re working toward.
Now, track your progress.
- Set up a system. There are tons of tools you can use to track your progress on your goals. Use the metrics in the goals to tally, mark off, check, and highlight the tasks you completed. I use Notion for my personal goal tracking, but there are others like Trello, Goalsetter, Asana, and so many others. Much of your real estate tracking can be done within your CRM. Track your transactions, phone calls, emails, and your GCI right in the dashboard of CRMs, like Follow Up Boss, Wise Agent, LionDesk, and others.
- Assess and adjust. It’s easy to get off-track, but don’t be too hard on yourself. We’re all human, and sometimes life gets in the way of our best intentions. Analyze where you are. Find entry points where you can make improvements and get yourself back on track. The truth is even if you don’t hit your goals every week, as long as you don’t stop and you keep moving forward, you’ll find success in your real estate business.
9. Create a Marketing Calendar
Nothing gets done unless you plan it. So in this section, we’ll talk about building your marketing calendar. It may sound intimidating to plan your content in advance, but you don’t have to do it all in one sitting. You can do it monthly, quarterly, or annually. I don’t recommend doing it weekly because it’s more overwhelming to do it that way than to sit down a few times per year and knock it all out at once.
Sit down with a blank calendar and start mapping out your content. You can download our marketing calendar here to get a head start. We’ve even taken the liberty of filling in some fun holidays for you to plan content around, along with a few more ideas.
Decide on what content will be most valuable to your target audience. You’ve already decided on what channels you’re going to use, so decide when will be the best time to deploy each of your media. For social media, you can plan out your posts and then create them yourself in Canva. Or you can use a platform like Coffee & Contracts to streamline your content creation. Once you’ve laid out your content, you can schedule it all at once using tools in Coffee & Contracts, Canva, or Meta Business (for Facebook and Instagram).
For your other content, like your print marketing campaigns, use a service like ProspectsPLUS! to set up postcards, pick your territory, and schedule your deliveries. I love creating my postcards in Canva, using either their templates or templates I find on Etsy, uploading them into PostcardsPLUS!, and sending them out to my geographic farm.
Most of your branding and real estate marketing plan can be scheduled in advance. For other parts of your marketing, you’ll need to tackle them as they are needed, like when you get a new listing. When you get a listing, you’ll want to maximize its impact by sending postcards, Just Listed and Just Sold, plus spending the extra money on a virtual tour and possibly, if available, some augmented reality to really add punch.
10. Implement Your Marketing Plan
Now you have your calendar in place. You’ve set aside how much you’ll spend on your branding and marketing. It’s time to launch your marketing plan.
- Set aside some time to build out your social media content.
- Set up any print advertising you have on your real estate marketing plan and get everything ready to deploy.
- Make sure you have your landing pages set up so you can capture leads as they come in.
- Don’t forget to automate responses to leads once they are entered into your CRM.
- Once everything is up and running, check to make sure everything is running smoothly and make any corrections necessary.
Congratulations! Your real estate marketing plan is up and running. Now you just need to monitor your progress and make adjustments when needed. Don’t panic if you don’t see a lot of leads come in initially. It takes time to develop that know, like, and trust factor. But you can have faith in the compound effect. The more people who see you, your posts, and your marketing materials, the more they will feel like they know you.
Each piece of content you deliver will compound your reputation in your area. Soon, you’ll see engagement on your posts, people in your DMs, and texts and phone calls from people in your community asking to meet for a cup of coffee to talk about listing their homes.
11. Track Your Progress
What do I mean when I say, “track your progress?” That’s a fair question. I haven’t talked much about key performance indicators (KPIs) in this article, so now is a good time to dive into what KPIs you should be tracking. Your KPIs will give you a good idea of where your traffic is coming from, how well you or your team are converting, and so much more. Knowledge is power in marketing, and the more you know about your leads and your success at converting those leads, the more success you will achieve.
Once you’ve got your marketing plan up and running, use tools like Google Analytics, Facebook Ads Manager, and your CRM analytics tools to monitor how effective your marketing is. Conversion rates will give you a lot of information about your return on investment. But also look at the length of time for conversions to get a better view of your overall marketing effectiveness.
Here is a short list of some of the most important metrics to track once you’ve implemented your real estate marketing plan:
- Website traffic
- Lead capture rate
- Conversion rate
- Response rate
- Cost per lead
- Cost per client
- Lifetime customer value
- Referral rates
- Engagement rates
- Click-through rate
These are only a few metrics you can track. Some of these you will find in your CRM dashboard, some are in your social media dashboard. Some of these metrics you may need to track on your own, like how well you convert your print media or how many transactions resulted from experiential marketing efforts. A tried-and-true spreadsheet works exceptionally well for those situations.
Remember to adjust your marketing efforts based on what your metrics tells you.
Diving into your real estate marketing plan might seem daunting, but it’s an absolute game-changer for ensuring success from the start. Skip the trial-and-error that leaves many agents back at square one. Use this guide to build a marketing plan that’s as dynamic as your business, revisiting and refining it every quarter to stay ahead. Don’t forget to download our real estate marketing plan template to streamline your path to growth. Start applying these insights today, and set your real estate career on the fast track to success.
Have you used a marketing plan for your real estate business? Did I miss any steps that you swear by? Did you download this marketing plan template and implement it? How did it go? Let me know in the comments.