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Last week, I wrote about bad ideas, and how they’ve shaped our business at Bullpen. I received a handful of responses to my email, but none with a bad idea that I could share … my offer remains, send me a bad idea, and I’ll choose the top one to include in a future email, citing you as the genius behind it.
This week, I’ve been obsessing over the topic of brand building in real estate companies.
I stumbled upon Dalmore this week. Admittedly, I couldn’t quite decipher their full business-model from their site, but one of their products is a hosted Reg CF offering. Simply, it gives real estate investors the opportunity to run their own crowdfunding campaign using their software.
The problem with traditional crowdfunding platforms is that your offering competes against other offerings. While crowdfunding platforms provide visibility for investment firms without a brand, they also limit your ability to control equity terms. Why would you invest in a deal with a 8% hurdle when you could invest in a similar one with a 6% hurdle?
Hosting a crowdfunding campaign on your website allows you to raise money without competition from other deals. However, it’s only effective if you have brand.
What’s brand? A brand is the way a product, company, or individual is perceived by those who experience it (thanks Google).
In fundraising for real estate, brand = quick raises with lots of investors.
How do you create a good brand? This is a million-dollar question, and it evolves constantly. I haven’t found a scientific formula, but I’ve observed top brands have a decent product and are exceptional at the one or more of the below:
– Communicating at scale
– Creating and distributing owned Media
– Capturing attention
Love them or hate them, the following people and businesses created powerful brands that are now being used to invest in real estate. I’ve included screenshots of their Ahrefs’ domain rating (DR) and backlink counts as a proxy for their brand strength.
Spencer Burton (A.CRE) – Spencer is the king of real estate financial modeling. He and two co-founders started adventuresincre.com, a blog that is full of quality education material on how to create institutional-level real estate financial models in excel. The blog generates more than 100,000 visitors per month, and they’ve monetized the audience by offering an analyst training program. HOWEVER, Spencer’s full-time job is as Head of Real Estate Investments at his firm, Stablewood Properties.
Grant Cardone – Grant leveraged social media to create a brand around wealth building. Now, he raises money to invest in multifamily real estate through Cardone Capital. In a recent controversial interview with Jordan Belfort (Wolf of Wall Street), Grant made known that his main priority is investing in real estate. However, Grant has leveraged his brand to launch a number of cash-cow businesses, including the 10x Conference and Cardone University.
Michael Blank (and other “gurus”) – Michael created a brand by preaching about financial freedom through investing in commercial real estate. He created an education empire, charging more than $10,000 for his “DIY” real estate courses. In addition to raising money through his vast network of retail investors, he also leverages his followers for deal sourcing.
I know … some of you are hating me for giving credit to the “gurus” of commercial real estate. HOWEVER, you can’t deny that they’ve created big brands that they’ve leveraged to raise large sums of money to invest in real estate.
Hines, CBRE, etc – Some big commercial real estate companies have incredibly strong brands but aren’t known for their marketing prowess. My theory is that these companies have impressive alumni networks that have helped disseminate their brands throughout the industry. When you see these companies on someone’s resume, you instantly think they are of a certain caliber … brands have power.
That’s all for this week. Send me a reply if you’d like to see your website’s Ahrefs’ statistics – I’ll get to as many as possible!