This month I had the opportunity to attend and speak at the ALTA Bootcamp in Nashville, Tennessee. This purpose of this event is to provide invaluable information on sales and marketing to help title agents and insurers grow and succeed. It was a day and a half of learning, networking, and expanding horizons.
The customer base for every industry is changing, not just title insurance. Advances in technology have led to an “Amazon Effect” that has touched every generation. People today can access everything they need in a matter of minutes through their smartphone. You no longer need to physically go to a store when Same Day Delivery is now an option. Even though you can’t purchase title insurance on Amazon, the requirement to deliver on a request instantly has become ingrained in our society. At ALTA Bootcamp we discussed this effect, along with many others, on the real estate market. I had the opportunity to speak with Wayne Stanley of Bowe Digital on “Updating Your Curb Appeal.” We discussed branding, networking, and advertising as it pertains to your business and today’s market.
Your brand is your representation of your company to the world. It is sometimes accompanied by a tagline, which adds to the culture and purpose of your company. Our logo has transitioned quite a bit over the years and I spoke about how and why those changes occurred. It’s very important to us that our branding represents who we are. When we last looked at our brand, we sat in a room and just started listing words that resonated with us as to what our company represents. We ended up with three words that we best felt represented us; Experience, Trust, Innovation. We felt that our strongest assets were our knowledge and experience, our integrity, and our passion for innovation and change. This exercise also helped us develop our tagline: Driven by Innovation. Defined by Experience.
There a million different ways that you can network; individual night events, networking groups, association sponsorships, chambers of commerce, and more. I’ve found through my experiences that the only way to know what works for you is to give everything a try and see what provides the greatest return on investment. One of the things we stressed most during this section is that when you are determining the return on investment of your networking, to make sure you are adding in the calculation of your most valuable asset; your time. You may have a group that has minimal fees or is even free, but if the time you spend there is not returning enough of a benefit for you, then you may need to reconsider.
Many people associate cost with advertisement, but in today’s world there are so many things you can do for free. Social media has given everyone the ability to spread their message with a very minimal cost. One of the greatest tools that ALTA has provided to the real estate industry is the Homebuyers Outreach Program (HOP). ALTA basically did all the market research and legwork needed to effectively communicate to homebuyers about the closing process and the value of title insurance. You can access some of this material for free at http://www.alta.org/realtor/. As a member of ALTA, we can access a great deal more information as well. If you need help communicating to a consumer about the closing process, please contact us and we will be happy to share this material!
We are in an age of technology where your digital presence is becoming more and more important. Consumers are spending more time online researching all products, including who to select as a realtor, where to find lending, and who to use for title insurance. If you would like to learn more about how to reach consumers digitally, please feel free to contact me at Nicole@fortunereo.com.