When it comes to real estate, the best brokers, buyers, and sellers know it’s all about location.

That’s true for real estate marketing as well, and it’s something that Patti Shannon, managing broker at High Point Realty Group in Bainbridge Island, Wash., knows well.

Each month, Patti makes sure she shows up in her subscribers’ inboxes so she can continue to be seen as a go-to resource for customers and prospects. By doing so, Patti knows she’ll stay top of mind for subscribers, so even though they may not be ready to move when they get her emails, they’ll think of her when they are, or can refer her to others. In fact, Patti attributes 90% of her current work to referrals and word of mouth.

We spoke with Patti to discuss what it’s like to run her own real estate business, and how she continues to connect with customers.

Ready to find qualified leads, get expert real estate marketing advice, and sell properties faster, all in one place?

What was the deciding factor that pushed you towards starting your real estate business?
Real estate has always been a desired career for me. I received my license in St. Louis around 1980, but didn’t use it because I needed a stable income at the time. When the 20-year-old company I was working for decided to shut down, I saw it as an opportunity to transition to another career I would love.

How important to you is work-life balance, and how does being a small business owner allow you to achieve that balance?
Work-life balance is important, but a sales career means work is top-of-mind 24/7. It’s hard to get away from it, no matter whether I’m working for a large or small company. Schedule freedom is something I’ve enjoyed for most of my career and that means a lot to me, whether working or playing.

What advantage does being a small business give you over your larger competitors?
High Point’s business model includes three things that help me to succeed as a small business: Our modest but stylish conference center provides a place to meet and a local presence, but doesn’t take huge financial resources; our marketing program includes excellent national exposure; and our brokerage employs an assistant who is a great help with time-consuming details, allowing me to be in front of my clients more and doubling the level of service I can provide. 

You specialize in single-family homes and condos in the Bainbridge and North Kitsap area. With that being said, which customer base are your email communications geared towards and how have you built your mailing list?
My customer base is compiled over 8 years of real estate experience. I built my list by asking permission from members of organizations I belong to, friends, clients and people I’ve met during open houses. I print a copy for use at open houses; I display it and ask people to register to receive my monthly emails.

Because your email campaigns follow many best practices, you won an All Star award earlier this year. How do you decide what content to include in your newsletters?
I like being the expert “go-to” person. I make notes, clip articles, announcements, etc. during the month and put them into a newsletter file folder. When I’m ready to create the newsletter, I block out a half day and get to work.

Looking to boost your real estate business? Visit our Real Estate Marketing Ideas page for more email marketing advice and ideas on what to send.