Being a real estate investor is a bit like being a tree in the forest.
There’s only so much sunlight to go around, and every tree is competing to get its share of the spotlight. By the time that each tree has laid claim to its spot, about 97% of sunlight gets blocked by the canopy.
Which means the little guys get almost nothing.
Fortunately, the business world isn’t as unchanging as the forest. In matter of months or years, some of your market competitors will fail. Some will barely survive. And others will snag a respectable portion of the available deals.
In this article, I’m going to show you 5 ways that you can beat big market competitors, even if you’re the little guy.
1. Play Your Corner
To beat other investors in your market, you’ll need a competitive advantage — something that makes you more desirable than the competition. You don’t need to be more desirable to everyone, just to some people.
I’ve often heard this called a Unique Selling Proposition.
And before you say to yourself, But my business IS the same as every other investor’s business, take a minute to think about it.
Do you do something — anything — different than other investors in your area? Do you make better offers? Do you close faster? Do you value your clients more? Do you only work with a certain type of person? Do you only wholesale or flip certain kinds of properties? Do you value the relationship more than the sale? Are you smaller and thus more personal than bigger investors?
You might not be the biggest guy in the ring, but that doesn’t mean you can’t throw a punch. Ask yourself the above questions about your business and find your Unique Selling Proposition — then put that USP on all your marketing materials.
You’ll soon carve out a very specific market of people who prefer to work with you over other investors in the area.
2. Follow-Up More Than Seems Reasonable
We talk about follow-up a lot… because it’s really important. And beating market competitors is no exception.
Look — the bigger a business gets, the more of that business’ leads which are going to fall through the cracks, right? After all, a big business can survive without closing every lead that comes its way; it depends more on quantity of lead generation then it does on consistent follow-up or savvy sales tactics.
A sure-fire way to beat the competition, then, is to follow-up more than anyone else in your market. Don’t let your leads go to waste — make the most of every single lead you generate and try to close that lead for months or even years into the future.
Doing so has made Ryan Dossey quite a lot of money.
3. Use Hand-Written Direct Mailers
If you’re like most real estate investors, then direct mail is the bread and butter of your lead generation.
It’s the fastest and easiest way to find motivated sellers and it gets the phone ringing better than any other marketing strategies.
So why not make the most of your mailers? Why not give yourself a competitive advantage?
I just came on as a partner at Ballpoint Marketing, where we create hand-written direct mailers for real estate investors. We use real ink that smudges and smears the paper — it looks just like a real person wrote it. Yes, they’re a little more expensive. And yes, we’re currently sold out (we’ll be ready for more orders in about 10 days!).
But they’re crazzzzy effective.
Just check out what Chase White had to say after trying them for the first time.
4. Cold Call Or Drive For Dollars
The bigger your competitor, the less that they’re going to use time-intensive strategies to generate leads. That’s the nature of the entrepreneurial journey. As you find success and your budget grows, you move from spending time to spending money to find motivated sellers.
But no matter how big your own business is, if you’re dealing with some big competitors, it might be worth your time and/or money to invest in cold calling, driving for dollars, and other strategies that your competition is ignoring.
Doing so can help you compete with other big-budget investors in your market.
5. If You Can’t Beat ’em, Join ’em
In the lucrative but competitive state that many real estate markets are in right now, there’s something to be said for teaming up or collaborating with other investors — and even tapping into similar creative finance methods..
I’m all for healthy competition and trying to outdo one another, but I also understand the importance of collaborating with competitors when it makes sense for your business to do so.
Maybe, for instance, you’ll find that another investor in your market focuses primarily on buy-and-hold deals, while your own business flips properties — there’s certainly some collaboration potential there. Or maybe you’ll find that you serve a different type of motivated seller than competitors in your market — you could then give referrals to one another when leads fit the other person’s business focus.
It’s up to you. But the harder you think about it, the more you’re going to find opportunities to collaborate (and profit from) working with other investors (and maybe even agents) in your market.
And remember, a referral commission can go a long way toward convincing an investor to toss you leftover leads 😉
The good news is, you don’t need to work harder to beat your big market competitors… you just need to work smarter. You need to focus on the right strategies that can set you apart from other investors and generate more promising leads for your business.
You can use the above five strategies to beat competition in your market and get your share of the available deals.
Let us know how it goes!