What Is A FARM?
Many clients ask us where they should start when it comes to marketing and branding themselves. If you are new to real estate or a seasoned profession, building a FARM and continuously marketing to that area will build your business-brand awareness. As inventory is low, FARMing is becoming essential to gain a competitive edge and gain leads. This is where your investment starts off slow, but will build over time.
WHAT IS A FARM?
FARM stands for Focused Area Research Marketing. It is a specific area or segmented neighborhood which you can grow your business. When you market to an area you build your reputation and connections within a certain area. Marketing in small amounts consistently is key to a successful FARM.
WHAT IS A GEOGRAPHIC FARM?
A geographic FARM is one of the most requested types of FARMS where you can solicit a specific neighborhood for business. When marketing to a specific area, you want to establish yourself as the “Neighborhood Expert” and develop relationships with the residents of that specific area over time.
IDENTIFYING A FARM
It is recommended that if you are new to real estate, you may want to start with your neighborhood where your current home is located. This is a great place to start because you are familiar with the surrounding area and many residents may already know you. Below are a few items to consider when identify an area you want to target:
Length of Residency - Do a little research and find out how long residents have lived in your FARM area. Research has shown that most residents relocate every five to seven years. This is also a great way to find out if residents have owned their home for long periods of time. If so, this would mean they would have higher equity in their property.
Visit the Surrounding Area - Get a better understanding of the neighborhood by visiting the community and door knocking. Look for local churches, schools, restaurants, small businesses, local papers and community events that would be a good resource to partner with on marketing pieces.
Owners vs. Renters - Do a lot of renters live in the area? If so, marketing to first-time homeowners is a great opportunity to build your business. We can help you by sending out first-time homeowner cards called STOP AND THINK...
Turn Over Rate - Is the number of homes sold per year in a defined subdivision or neighborhood. It is calculated by taking the number of sales in the last year (12 months) and dividing it by the total number of homes in the area or subdivision. A turn over rate of 6% or higher is a great area to target.
Know Your Competition - Do some investigating and find out who is selling in your targeted FARM area. Do they have a majority of the market share? How many homes have they sold? Are you able to compete with the number of homes?
Demographics - Understand the community of the targeted area. What is the age range? What is their interest, income level, occupations, type of community living, etc. This will help you to understand the area to see if you want to market to it.
HOW TO MARKET TO YOUR FARM
The next step is to generate business after you have picked a FARM that will work for you.
Below are some great ideas where White Knight Marketing, Design & Print can help.
Newsletter - Develop a newsletter to send out to your community. This could include both digital format and print format. Talk about upcoming neighborhood events, community garage sales, neighborhood statistics, etc. Give them a reason why they would want to read your monthly or quarterly newsletter.
Work With Local Businesses - Find local service shops, landscapers, accounts, deck repair, roof repair, handyman, tree removal, pest removal, plumbers, furnace repair men, etc. and partner with them. Brainstorm and discuss how you could share the cost of a promotional mailing. We can help you design this mailing and send it out to your FARM.
Monthly Direct Mail Campaign - Use our SAVE'EM, SEASONAL and SPORTS SCHEDULES postcards to be timely and stay in front of your FARM on a consistent basis. These items usually have a long shelf life and you stay on top of your clients mind. Also, consider sending out a JUST LISTED/SOLD card to the community as well if you had recent activity in the neighborhood.
Community Advertisement - Sponsor local fundraising, school activities, church events, community garage sales,
shred-a-thons, donation drives, etc. Let us help you design and send out a mailing to your FARM to promote this event.
Host Seminars - Develop and host a seminar that is relevant to your community. These could be home seller and buyer seminars, protecting your home investment, financial advising, etc. Host the event at your local library or recreational center. We can help you by designing and sending out postcards or products to promote the event.