Geo farming is one of the surest ways to ensure your long-term dominance over an area, but that doesn’t mean it’s for everyone.
Lead sources are like clothes – they’re an expression of who you are, and if they don’t fit, then they’re not really doing their job. This especially applies to something like geo farming, which is a natural fit for some agent and completely uncomfortable for others.
The fact is, geo farming is a FANTASTIC way of generating high-quality leads and becoming the celebrity agent of your market. There is serious MONEY in it. But only if it fits.
The question this blog aims to answer is: Is geo farming right for me?
I’m going to ask you five questions. Your job is to answer them honestly and then decide if geo farming is right for you. But before that, let’s take a brief look at what geographic farming is for those who aren’t familiar…
What is Geographic Farming?
Geographic farming is when a real estate agent takes a hyper-focused approach to marketing to in a specific geographic area. This could be a neighborhood of as little as 100 homes and as many as tens of thousands.
It’s a combination of different marketing tactics, including but not limited to:
- Direct mail
- Community events
- Door knocking
- Keepables (refrigerator magnets, coffee table books, etc…)
- Email newsletters
The point of geo farming is basically to become the face of your community. When someone in one of these neighborhoods thinks about real estate, they think about you.
Question No. 1: Is There a Geo Farm Open?
There are no “designated geo farms.” It’s not like there’s some website you can go to which will show you the boundary lines of “District 72: Farm 11” or anything like that. You draw your own lines, but that being said, there are a lot of things to consider.
The boundaries of your farm must make sense because you’re going to be using the same marketing for every home in the farm. Make sure the homes in your farm are at relatively the same price point (or at least not radically different). Determine if the content of your newsletter would be relevant to everyone in the farm. A great way to find a farm is to look for areas that would all go to the same school.
Once you find a good area, you need to establish if there’s room there for you. There’s no point in trying to move into a farm where another agent already has their dominance established. Firstly, because it won’t be as effective, and secondly because it’s just bad taste. There’s a rule in fishing that you shouldn’t cast your net out in front of someone else’s, and in this case, you should show the same kind of respect.
A good rule of thumb is that no one agent controls more than 30% of a specific area’s transactions. If one agent does control more than 30%, you’re likely taking on a difficult and expensive battle if you choose to market yourself in that same area.
So hit the streets and see what you can find. If nothing jumps out to you right away, this might be a great area to put your plow down.
Question No. 2: Can You Afford the Upfront Costs of Geo Farming?
In most cases, reputation doesn’t come cheap these days. Geo farming requires a significant financial investment because most of your marketing comes in a physical form instead of free social media posts. Sending out a postcard isn’t going to break the bank but sending out 10,000 postcards every few weeks can add up quickly.
One of the biggest opportunities of having a geo farm is throwing awesome community events which make you the most loved person around – but depending on what type of event you organize, this can also rack up significant expense.
Don’t get me wrong… if you can afford it, it’s totally worth it! Not only is it fun, but the ROI for the parties you through can be massive. Dave Archuletta out of Rancho Mission Viejo, who has only been in the business for three years, did nearly $80 million in volume last year off these events alone!
Question No. 3: Is Your Personality Right for Geo Farming?
We’ve already established that the point of geo farming is to become the face of your community. It makes you the celebrity of the neighborhood, the fun person who is always willing to help and support everyone in any way you can.
That’s what every agent wants, right?
Well, in theory, yes. But maybe not in practice.
You have to be comfortable putting your face absolutely everywhere and be prepared to have conversations at the grocery store.
Also, not everyone likes throwing parties. Do you?
Question No. 4: Do You Match Your Clientele?
You don’t need to be a millionaire to sell homes to millionaires – but it helps, a lot.
People of different geographical and economic positions have fundamentally different concerns and interests. They hang out in different places, have different hobbies, and appreciate different kinds of parties.
You can’t be the face of a community if you don’t have anything in common with the community, which is a reason why it often helps if you live in the farm that you’re working.
If there’s a country club that a lot of your prominent community members attend, you better be sure you can get into that club – and that you enjoy going there. Authenticity goes a long way, and you don’t need to pretend to be someone you’re not in hopes of getting a sale.
Question No. 5: Do You Have Patience?
This one is a biggie…
Geographic farming is not something that instantly pays off. In some instances, it could take years to establish a firm grasp over a farm, but once you have it, the returns are well worth the effort.
At the end of the day, farming is a long-term strategy. Keep that in mind whenever your optimism begins to waver.
Last Question: Is Geographic Farming Right for You?
Only you know the answer to that. You need to do your research, find the best farm possible, and go about it strategically.
And if you need help with that kind of geo farming strategy, it’s one of the things I’m talking about at each stop on my Roadmap Tour. You’ll learn what some of the best farmers in the world are doing to win over their neighborhoods with ease.
And to see what geo farming has done for one Rockstar agent, you can download Shelley Sakala’s free playbook, right here. You’ll learn the exact farming plays Shelley runs and the kind of business it earns her.