Back in the old days, instead of looking up available listings on the MLS, real estate agents had to lug around large, paper books that held that week’s available listings. Back in those days, geographic farming was the smart way to keep up with the local real estate market.
An agent could realistically keep track of what listings were for sale and how much previous listings had sold for in their farm, whereas that information was tricky to pull together for a wider area. In recent years, technological advancements have made that information readily available, but did that spell the end to geographic farming as a viable marketing strategy? Check out the Pros and Cons of geo farming below, and let us know what you think!
Pro: Pick your location. With geographic farming, you can work in the area that you choose and avoid the long, tedious back and forth driving that a lot of agents submit themselves to on a day to day basis.
Con: Geographic farming is very labor intensive. There’s door-to-door knocking, database management, social marketing, direct mailing, and sometimes even event coordinating for your community.
Pro: Strong branding as the area’s local expert and high visibility encourages people to think of you as their go-to real estate agent.
Con: Putting enough work into your farm to make is a success limits your chances of getting work in other areas.
Pro: With geographic farming, you can physically inspect and visit each listing in your area. Having this personal knowledge of the properties gives you an advantage over outside agents whose knowledge of the properties and area may be limited to what can be found through the MLS and online.
Con: There is a lot of information available online. Bed, baths, square footage, recent sales, price changes, etc. can be found online, limiting the edge that your first-hand knowledge of the property grants you.
Pros: When clients or prospects ask you about the local schools, parks, events, businesses, traffic, etc. you won’t have to sit down at a computer to find this information. Your in depth experience with the neighborhood will allow you to share more than just the basic facts about the community to help weave a real, sale-able image of the area.
While some, such as real estate coach Tom Ferry, are big proponents of geo farming, others are not quite sold. Do you have more pros and cons to add to the list? Let us know—leave a comment or tweet us your opinion! For more marketing strategies, download our FREE Be the Local Expert eBook.