The Business Card Test

Well, the really bad ones  . . . are dead.”

–Master electrician, explaining how consumers can tell the difference(s) between electricians.

Fortunately, being bad at real estate sales isn’t life-threatening.

Subpar Realtors simply tend not to make a living at it, and drop out.

Perhaps that’s why something like 90% of all new agents leave the field in less than two years.

Which begs the question: how do you tell if an experienced Realtor is really actually good?

Wasted Opportunities

While it may be hard to identify stellar agents — having your picture on the most billboards doesn’t count 🙂 — luckily, there’s an easy way for consumers to identify mediocre (or worse) ones: ask them for their business card, and turn it over.

If it’s blank, they’re likely not world-class.

Here’s why:

Unbeknownst to the general public, most of what good Realtors do is behind-the-scenes.

The same agent who wastes 50% of the marketing space on their business cards is unlikely to make use of “Agent Remarks” on MLS — a supplemental field which, as the name suggests, is only visible to Realtors.

It’s much easier to simply copy and paste the marketing verbiage from “Public Remarks” into “Agent Remarks,” which far too many Realtors do, than offer additional selling points about the “For Sale” home which might otherwise be overlooked.

The same principle applies to writing photo captions (admittedly, more challenging now that the maximum number of photos is effectively infinite); using the back side of property flyers set out at the “For Sale” home; and doing all the pre-list networking tasks good agents do behind the scenes to raise awareness of their upcoming listings.

Bottom line?

A Realtor who doesn’t do the easy (and visible) marketing tasks is unlikely to do the more challenging, unseen ones . . .

See also, “Painters, Electricians & Realtors: What Makes Real Estate Sales Such a Deceptively Challenging Field“; “Realtor Business Card Collection”; “Too Much Information — Realtor Version“; “Umm . . . Do You Hand Out Magnifying Glasses With Those??”; and “The Shape(s) of Things to Come? Maybe.”

About the author

Ross Kaplan has 19+ years experience selling real estate all over the Twin Cities. He is also a 12-time consecutive "Super Real Estate Agent," as determined by Mpls. - St. Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business Magazine. Prior to becoming a Realtor, Ross was an attorney (corporate law), CPA, and entrepreneur. He holds an economics degree from Stanford.

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