I’ve got to dish out some truth for you.
A lot of real estate agents *think* they know their ideal client avatar.
When in fact, they really don’t.
I believe the reason so many agents avoid choosing a niche is because of fear.
You’re scared that if you niche down too far, you’ll lose business. Sound familiar?
But that’s not the case, in fact, it’s exactly the opposite. Niching is the foundation of all marketing, not just in real estate marketing.
You HAVE to know who you’re speaking to – and why you’re speaking to them in the first place.
What are their struggles? What are their wants and needs? What is their core problem? And how can you solve that problem for them?
I’m sure you’ve heard this before, but I’m going to repeat it again…
If you’re speaking to everyone, you’re speaking to no one.
You need to get to know your clients on a whole other level. Learn how they speak, how they communicate, so that you can properly connect with them.
Getting clear on your ideal client avatar will help you do exactly that.
There are tons of articles online about how to craft an ideal client avatar, but in this article, I want to focus on five common pitfalls I see most agents fall into when it comes to choosing their ideal client.
But first, let’s get into what it really means to choose an ideal client avatar…
How To Niche Down And Choose An Ideal Client Avatar
When I talk about the importance of having a niche, many people tell me, “I have a niche! I do listings in a certain area!”
Listings in a specific area is not a niche.
Here are some examples of effective niches that some agents choose to work with so you can get a better idea of what I’m talking about.
This is an incredible niche for agents. Empty nesters are people who had a big home, their kids have moved out, and now they’re left with a ton of empty space. They have a specific set of needs for their next move. Maybe they’re looking for a fresh start, they want to downsize, or they’re looking for a home that will accommodate their needs as they get older. This is a segment of the market you can get to know well.
I actually have a client right now whose niche is women going through a divorce. She works with these women specifically and helps to support them and empower them in their next chapter, finding a place that feels like home after a tough transition.
Your niche might be an area that you have skills and knowledge in, or it might just be something you connect to on a personal level. Maybe you’ve even gone through a personal experience, struggle, or transformation that you now want to help others work through.
Just remember, the longer you continue to say “I do listings and buyers” or, “I do commercial and renters”, the longer you’re avoiding picking a niche.
And without a niche, your marketing is going to be generic and only add to the noise of invaluable content that most people ignore.
You might even feel like you’re just throwing spaghetti at the wall because you’re not able to form a real connection with the clients that you’re looking to target.
If you want to avoid that feeling and develop marketing that effortlessly attracts perfect-fit clients, keep reading to learn about the most common ideal client avatar pitfalls and how to avoid them.
Being The Generalist
Everybody wants to be Oprah.
Everybody wants to be that person who can speak to everyone and dominate their entire city.
Now, you might be able to do that over time. But especially in the beginning, you’re going to need to niche down so you can cut through the noise.
When you’re in a market with tens of thousands of agents and you’re using the same message as everyone else, you’re just going to get lost in the crowd.
You need to speak to a specific group of people with a specific problem they need to solve. And speak to them in their own words.
You have to remember the capture of attention is marketing gold.
The capture of attention is that first moment where someone stops what they’re doing and thinks…wait a second, who IS this person?
If you’re trying to speak to everyone, your ideal client avatar, the person you’re dying to work with, is never going to have that moment.
Being the generalist will leave you proving yourself, discounting your services, fighting with other agents for listings, and feeling like you’re no different from anyone else.
You need to offer a specific solution to a specific problem.
Falling Victim to “Unicorn Syndrome”
There’s this phenomenon that goes on in the real estate community that I like to call “unicorn syndrome”. It’s where agents think of the real estate industry as so special and so different than any other type of business.
When in reality, that’s not the case at all.
Real estate is really all about human connection.
You have to remember: your business and your clients are not the exception to the rule.
When you fall victim to unicorn syndrome, you believe that proven marketing strategies, such as niching down, won’t work for you. Because you’re special and different.
But here’s some tough love… your business is *not* that special.
Businesses have operated on the same principles for 1000s of years. The principles of marketing and crafting a powerful message that resonates have been the same since people were selling skirts in the town square.
The main reason things have changed is that we now have access to incredible technology at our fingertips to help us spread our message.
So if you’re an agent who has a relevant, powerful message, you have the ability to reach your perfect ideal clients at scale because of things like online advertising.
Just remember: wherever you’re located, whoever your client is, whatever your services are, you are not the real estate unicorn. Don’t let this excuse hold you back from honing in on your ideal client avatar.
Just remember the basic, foundational principles of marketing still work.
Not Using the Language of Your Ideal Client
When you go to craft your ideal client avatar, one of the best pieces of advice I have is to go out and actually talk to them.
Whether it’s in person, on Zoom or you just pick up the phone and give them a call, make it a priority to start having conversations with your ideal clients.
Talk about their problems, their struggles, their desires.
When you do this, not only will you be able to craft your services around their needs, you’ll also learn to speak their language.
Sometimes as experts, we think we know what our clients want and what they’re going through. We’re so sure we understand the problems that we solve.
But in fact, we actually don’t.
The best thing you can do as an agent is to speak to your ideal clients to understand the language they use, so you can craft a message that resonates with them.
You’ll be able to speak in their own words, rather than using any industry or expert lingo.
When you speak to somebody in their own words, the person feels as if you’re seeing into their soul. As if you’re right inside their head. And can connect with what you’re saying in a deep and profound way.
Your clients will start to see you as someone who truly understands them, rather than just somebody who’s marketing to them.
Not Updating Your Ideal Client Avatar
An ideal client avatar exercise is not something you set and forget.
It needs to constantly be updated as YOU and your business grows and evolves.
Your ideal client avatar is going to change, your experience is going to change and your understanding is going to change as you work within your marketplace.
The more you work with your ideal clients, the more you’ll be able to refine your ideal client avatar.
Once you start working with a certain type of client over and over again, you’ll gain clarity on something you didn’t realize in the beginning.
You’ll want to take note of any changes or shifts in your ideal client. Make it a point to revisit your ideal client avatar every couple of months and update it based on your personal growth, experiences, and knowledge you’ve gained.
Focusing Too Much on a Large Audience Rather than a Small Targeted One
So many agents think the answer to success lies in growing your audience bigger and bigger and bigger.
They think they need 10,000 followers and a massive email list to have a successful career in real estate.
If you’ve ever felt this way, here’s what you may not have realized about this ideology.
Typical conversion rates are between 1-3%.
With this kind of marketing, you’re attracting cold leads.
But when you focus on a smaller, more targeted group, and develop a real connection with them, everything changes.
The conversion rate on the niched group is going to be astronomically higher.
And a big part of the reason for this is because this group of people already knows, likes, and trusts you.
When someone already feels like they know you, they don’t mess around. You’re not just another agent to them.
You won’t find yourself in a situation where your client is interviewing six other real estate agents, trying to figure out who will give them the best commission break, or who will give them the highest listing price.
Instead, they’ll already be sold on YOU.
When you’ve brought someone into your world through your marketing, oftentimes there won’t even need to be a listing appointment.
Instead, your clients will jump straight into, “When are you free and when can you come to see my house?”
They already know who you are, what you do, and what you specialize in.
Heck, they even know you have a Corgi and love taking your kid to soccer practice and that you don’t work on Sundays.
They already see you as a friend, even though you’ve never met. And that kind of relationship is a thousand times more powerful than having a massive cold audience to sell to.
Remember, it’s not about the numbers, it’s about how deeply you’re connecting with a *specific* type of person.
Focusing Too Much on Scaling Your Marketing Efforts Without The Foundation
Don’t get me wrong, omnipresence is definitely one of the sexy parts of real estate marketing. All of a sudden, you get to be everywhere, almost like you’re a celebrity. You’re showing up in all the right places, you’re on people’s newsfeeds 2 to 3 times a day, and you’re building authority as the expert.
But before you get to the fun, sexy things, you’ve got to build your foundation.
If you try to skip to omnipresence without first becoming relevant, constantly seeing your message across all platforms is only going to annoy your audience rather than build a connection.
When you haven’t taken the time to perfect your ideal client avatar, every single thing you build on top of that is a house of cards.
It doesn’t matter how good your intentions are, how much money you throw at fixing your funnel, or what your ad spend looks like. At the end of the day, if your messaging is off, if your ideal client avatar isn’t spot on, nothing else will make any difference.
Take your time on this piece and get it right.
Think of your ideal client avatar as your entire marketing foundation.
By putting in some hard work to craft your ideal client avatar the right way, you’ll STOP hunting for leads and start to effortlessly attract perfect-fit clients every single day.
Do you want more support with generating qualified leads for your real estate business? Download my free The Listings Lab Guide to learn how to fill your calendar with appointments in no time!