Estate agents and do they offer riches in niches?

Riches in niches.

Nice ring to it – if you’re American.

I’ve tried to get all focused on estate agencies, with some success, but here’s my worry: if Joe Public regards estate agents as lying sharks (their perceptions, I must add), can I trust estate agents as a social media marketer and writer in that niche?

Backside firmly planted on the fence, I’d say Yes and No.

Let me expand.

15 months ago, when I set up the business I must have exuded desperation.

I was contacted and invited to an estate agency in Attleborough, Norfolk, met the Director and chatted about property writing – he seemed keen.

Despite messaging and emailing him for weeks after via email and LinkedIn, I was roundly ignored.

His prerogative you might say.

I’d call him ignorant.

Wouldn’t you?

Others have paid for my services and then quibbled, I kid you not, over money, when I produced a list of payments showing they owed me £25 which of course I waived.

Another estate agent off my Christmas card list.

A third who offered me a contract and when two weeks were up, changed their mind, although they did pay upfront.

Another one from far, far away, who has clearly changed heart but hasn’t the heart to tell me.

Perhaps, I need to learn that’s the business way of life.

Still irritates me though.

I work now for three estate agencies though who are making me revise my stereotypical perceptions – all three pay on time, stick to agreements and have not led me up a garden path or along a yellow brick road.

I do have a heart and a brain and don’t want to find no Oz at the end.

At the risk of biting the hand that feeds me, cards on the table, heart on sleeve, I don’t get treated like this by other industries who I write and manage social media for.

An electrical firm paid me upfront to write blogs.

An investment company does the same.

A book publisher, several authors and a local marketing company are sound as a pound too.

So the riches in niches partly applies but I’m now behaving differently with clients.

You want me to travel to meet you on the off chance of some role, pay my expenses.

You want me to write for you, run your social media accounts, pay me upfront.

I’ve taught “Jaws” the text and the movie and I’ve no intention of other estate agents messing me around and costing me an arm and leg.

Blunt, maybe, but it needed saying.

And if you agreed to something and change your mind, don’t ignore me and blank me: a polite “no thank you” will do.

I’m blessed to be working with three estate agencies and other clients who all have integrity – I need more of those and fewer ignorant sharks.

If you’re one like the three, who needs help with copywriting and social media marketing, and won’t bite or maim or ignore, get in touch.

 

 

4 Comments

  • chris arnold says:

    They’re frightened,Stuart.
    Used to leafleting, local press advertising and cold-calls.
    Change involves risk. Risk involves fear.
    Frightened that it might involve hard work. And, that they may not be capable of handling inevitable success.
    Make it easier for them.

    • Stuart Walton says:

      I think you’re right Chris – rely on old ways and portals; don’t outsource; keep everything in-house. I do of course generalise about estate agents – I now have three excellent clients who take risks by using me and aren’t afraid. A case in point: I was emailed last week asking if I fancied meeting up near Cambridge to discuss my services. It’s a 3 hour round trip. 15 months ago, I’d have started the engine and fired up the sat nav. Now I politely said “No thanks, unless you’re prepared to pay me to meet near you.” They didn’t respond – which tells me they’re a frightened, low information agent (to go all Ryan Fletcher).

  • chris arnold says:

    And, why the podcast is called Needle & Haystack.
    Incidentally, why not Skype instead of contributing to greenhouse gasses? Oh, I forgot. Not many agents have the app.
    I’m beginning to sound a bit like some abrasive Yorkshire man:)

Leave a Reply