How to Market a Pocket Listing

How to Market a Pocket Listing

You’ve scored your first pocket listing, congratulations! These are highly profitable and can help you stake your claim in your market. The only problem is that most of your go-to real estate marketing strategies aren’t going to help you here. For one, you have to protect your client’s privacy and keep the general public out.  Two, the home is probably out of the price range of the average buyer.

Those two factors mean that you need to get creative with your marketing of the home, and we’re ready to help.  Below you’ll find seven ways to market a pocket listing so that you can bring in qualified buyers and help to keep your client’s identity and home as private as possible.

  1. Network with Financial Advisors

    Gaining the respect and trust of financial advisors can take some time. That, combined with the idea that you are likely reading into marketing pocket listings before you obtain your first, is why we’re starting our list here.

    Meeting financial advisors can happen in any number of ways, and you may want to wait for the relationship to start organically rather than approaching them on the spot about a business opportunity. Over time, you can gain their trust by offering your services when they mention clients that need to downsize their assets or have the opportunity to move into a bigger home.

    After their trust is gained and a healthy relationship is established, you can approach them about a pocket listing to see if they know of anyone who may be interested. They may even provide you with a list of people who have the kind of income that would justify you approaching them with the opportunity.

  2. Exclusive Advertising

    With a pocket listing, advertising to the general public is off the table. Even exclusive advertisements in pristine publications might be an issue if the client doesn’t want to make the information to select groups, which is why you should always consult with your client about the idea first.

    As we mentioned early on, one of the reasons that might keep a listing away from the general public is because the average buyer likely can’t afford it. Openly advertising in the usual places is sure to draw in many who just want a closer look at the property with no intent to buy—in other words, time wasters.

    That said, you can still advertise in exclusive places that draw in a “select” audience. Sponsoring events held by high-end businesses that draw in wealthy clientele is a great place to market your services. Something like supporting the cocktails and bars or paddles at a Christie’s jewelry auction or a classic vintage car or art auction or reaching out to overseas accounts are great places to start. Consider that the people in these places have higher than average income and may be looking for a property.

    If you only get a few bites, they are likely earnest about buying. Even if they aren’t, you’ve still captured the attention of those who attend, which may lead to further ventures among this demographic.

  3. Consider the Local Sportsman Clubs

    If the buyer lives in a rural area, they may want to keep the listing out of sight from the general public for reasons other than buyer budgets. It may be that they’re trying to keep their property out of the hands of potential developers and see it go to someone who will treat the land with respect. Who respects land more than sportsmen?

    If that’s the case, you can use this concept as something to continue the previous steps. Find a way in so that you can advertise to members. Perhaps that means sponsoring an exclusive event, or maybe it means simply advertising the listing here.

    Keep in mind that local clubs are small and home to many average buyers. So, if you decide to take this angle with a high-dollar property, try to look for more high-end clubs similar to the Broken Arrow Club in Montana or Flying B Ranch in Idaho.

  4. Google Ads (Demographic Targeting)

    No, Google Ads aren’t visible to just anyone. You can tailor the ad to appear to people in specific age groups, locations, and, of course, by including exact keywords that would cause your ad to populate in their search results. This is a great way to close in on an audience you feel is likely to be interested in the home.

    By selecting specific age groups and combining them with high income zip codes and higher income demographics, you’ve now increased the likelihood of capturing the attention of those with a higher income that can afford the home. Keep in mind that young people just starting out aren’t likely to have a carrier to support investing in high-dollar homes.

    You can also add the price of the home to the ad and use keywords that illustrate the nature of the property. Don’t just bank on broad stroke terms like luxury homes, either. Consider mentioning that these ads say it is the perfect beach, vacation, retirement, or investment home.  With that said, you’ll want to add some negative keywords as well to block people just looking for high value homes because they want to see them.  Words like “photos” and “celebrities” are good examples of people just browsing or to see if the home was owned by someone famous.

    It’s essential to think creatively but stay within the lines of reality. After all, you don’t want to produce a misleading ad or risk overexposing the property and go against your client’s wishes. This information is a critical detail that potential buyers will wish to, but your client might not want out there.

  5. Networking with Higher-Ranking Agents

    Pocket listings can be a touchy subject as many agents feel that they’re unethical. But the reason many feel that way is because some unprofessional agents take the opportunity to act in their best interest over the clients. If you’re open to the idea of bringing another agent in, consider asking those who have a track record of selling high-dollar properties.

    These agents likely still have connections with potential buyers that meet the criteria the property you are working with demands. It also helps you show a level of integrity that often goes missing with pocket listings, helping you gain even more respect from your peers.

  6. Follow Up with Aspiring Investors

    Keeping a log of your contacts is always a good idea. The chances are that throughout your carrier, you’ve come to the aid of investors who were just getting their start at investing. It’s likely that things have worked in their favor since you last spoke with them. Maybe they’re ready to tackle a whole new level of real estate investing, or perhaps they’ve been so successful that it’s time for them to move up.

    You won’t know how someone’s carrier is going until you reach out to them, and what’s a better way to break the ice than with a business prospect?

    Of course, you want to be aware of the caliber of the property you’re about to approach them with. If they were just investing in condos to rent out, they might not be ready for a multi-million dollar home. But if you last left off with a commercial property or multi-family residence, it won’t hurt to try.

  7. Put that Country Club Membership to Work

    A theme of pocket listings is that you’re likely to be working with a house that has an above-average asking price. That means you need to capture the attention of those with above-average income. What’s a better place to start looking than the country club you belong to? You might not be able to write it off in your taxes, but you can put it to work with you.

    Attending social events there is a great way to network with wealthy individuals. You can catch wind of those looking to buy homes simply by socializing and asking around. After all, this is the kind of place where folks tend to brag about the money they have to spend, and you may be able to drum up a few naturally flowing approaches in conversation.

Marketing a pocket listing is easy, you just have to get creative.  These seven tips on how to market a pocket listing and find a buyer are just scratching the surface.  Join our newsletter below and we’ll email you more marketing ideas and resources each month in our newsletter.

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