An Honest Question
By America’s Six Figure Real Estate Coach Roberta Ross
As a professional, you probably have high standards when it comes to hiring people to work for you-right? Are you insistent on top service levels and the highest quality products? How often in your career have you taken a step back and given yourself a performance review? I ask because too often we get in a groove of doing things the same old way, and stop looking for ways we can improve our performance, raise our own bar for service and excellence, and allow the rationale that we are “busy” be the reason we cut corners or drop the ball.
So this month’s challenge is this: Give yourself a review. If you were a home buyer or seller – would you be compelled to work with you? Maybe that’s a resounding, “YES!” But can you do better? Can you comfortably and confidently say there’s no room for improvement? What can you do starting this week that will tighten up the systems you have in place, sharpen your skills, and improve the customer experience? They don’t have to be big ticket changes, unless those are warranted. The top agents in our business are in a constant state of tweaking their skills, their business plans, and the tools and techniques they use to communicate with their clients and customers.
Here are 5 things to look at when evaluating your performance:
- Your customer reviews. Are you getting positive reviews from your current and past clients? Are they referring new business to you? Do you provide your customers with a survey asking for a review (and provide an opportunity to share their comments)? If not, you’re missing a chance to capture great feedback that you can use in your marketing when it’s good and use to learn where you need improvement when it’s not as high a rating as you’d like.
- Your interaction with other agents. Are the agents you work with, co-broke with, and interact with sending referrals your way? Are they singing your praises or questioning your professionalism? There will always be professional rivals of course, but there shouldn’t ever be enough room for someone to question your integrity, commitment to service, and capabilities. There will always be professional rivals of course, but there shouldn’t ever be enough room for someone to question your integrity, commitment to service, and capabilities.
- Your numbers. What is your list to close ratio? Your call to appointment ratio? Your results in relation to your goals? Everything else in this otherwise “people” business can get emotional at times, but the bottom line numbers tell the truth. If you’re not on mark to hit your goals with solid lead conversion and solid listing/sale numbers then something’s off. Get with your broker or integrity partner and don’t stop until you figure it out.
- Your credentials. Are your credentials on pace with your career goals? In other words are you taking the extra training and skill sharpening needed to become certified in the areas of our industry that interest you the most? Top agents are passionate about constant improvement and their credentials reflect that. Do yours?
- Your inner truth. We can sometimes slip some things by the rest of the world, but in our heart and mind, we know when we are not giving our all. We all have an internal compass that lets us know when we are on track or off. What is yours telling you? That you are giving 110% or that you have much room for improvement, or maybe, like most –there are areas where you can strengthen your game. Listen to that inner truth and adjust your actions and mindsets accordingly.
In all that we do, it’s good to take a few steps back now and then to assess whether you are bringing your best self to the table each day – and when you are not, to shift your daily action steps to do better That’s not to say that you need to work 24/7. Find your balance. Bring your best to both your personal and professional life and don’t be shy about asking for help managing that process. Some of the best of the best in our business don’t fly solo. They have a mentor, coach, mastermind group – or all three to help keep them on track.
Stop Saying “I Don’t Have Time”
By America’s Six Figure Real Estate Coach Roberta Ross
The truth is that we make time for what’s important. What we prioritize. What we push to the top of the list. There are a lot of people who wear being “too busy” as a badge of honor almost. They hang their hat on the “I don’t have time” mantra and when that happens, a lot of valuable things can get missed.
I recently came across a book by author Laura Vanderkam, 168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think. In it she interviews dozens of happy, successful, ultra-productive people, that instead of letting the daily grind crowd out the important stuff, make sure there's time for the important stuff. Vanderkam shows that with a little examination and prioritizing, you'll find it is possible to sleep eight hours a night, exercise five days a week, take piano lessons, and write a novel without giving up quality time for work, family, and other things that really matter.
How’s that for an idea? What if we stopped the glorification of being busy and stepped up our time management game? Not just so that we can be more productive, but so that we can be happier, healthier, and lead more balanced lives? Would that be worth making the shift was we head into the new year? I think so.
One of the things I’ve found in all my years of coaching is that creating that balance, and learning to prioritize and plan is one of the very top reasons people cite to start coaching in the first place. Many of them are top producers in their own right – working seemingly round the clock. That’s a recipe for burn out, and doesn’t make for much of a home and personal life. When we can instead take what you’re doing every day and break it into what’s most important, what can be delegated, and what can be managed differently, we can start to see where big blocks of time can be re-appropriated.
Here are some tips to help you make more of your time.
- Know your peak performance times. You know yourself better than anyone else – when are YOU at your personal best? Are you a morning person? A night owl? A mid-day powerhouse? We all have times where we can work at our optimum level. Make YOUR best time of day the time when you power through some of your most difficult tasks that require the most energy.
- It’s OK not to answer – the door, the phone, or the interruption. Some of the most talented, top-producing entrepreneurs in the world credit the ability to stay on task as one of the reasons they are where they are. I even saw a sign the other day that an agent put on her door that proclaimed, “This is my power hour for prospecting and building my business. Please do not interrupt unless you’re on fire, the building is on fire, or there is an actual emergency.” It was funny, but also a humorous way to let people know that she took that time-block seriously enough to stay on task. This is JUST as important during your personal time as it is prospecting time, by the way. Let the phone call go to voicemail. Block time to stay focused, and time to answer any messages you might receive.
- Write it down. It’s kind of silly in today’s 24/7 world to think we can remember everything and really – it’s more stressful to try. Keep a journal or notebook with a calendar (hard copy or digital version) where you can chronical and prioritize your task lists and keep track of everything without straining your brain to remember every detail.
- For the most part, six-figure earners don’t do a lot of $5 an hour work. They use their time doing what they do best professionally, and enjoying the rest. To do that they get very effective at delegating busy work that can be done by someone else – often even more efficiently. Don’t try to do it all.
If you’re in business planning mode for the new year, you might want to pick up Ms. Vanderkam’s book or look for additional time-management tips and tools. It’s sure to feel good going into a new year looking forward to having more time, less stress, and more success. Good luck to you! I’d love to hear your thoughts! Follow me on Facebook today!
By Roberta Ross,
America's Six Figure Real Estate Coach
In today’s robust age of social media, “following” and “un-following” people in the cyber world is just a matter of a click. In under a minute you get to choose what you allow into your feed, your sphere, and your daily dose of social media. Especially now, during heated election climates – turning people’s opinions off or on has become even more of a chore. It’s interesting though, when you start to think about how we can do that out here in the physical world of colleagues, friends, family, and neighbors. It takes more than click to disconnect ourselves from influences that don’t meet our expectations, wreak havoc on our sensibilities, or stray far from our core beliefs.
A friend of mine who tends to get pulled into a lot of events and activities (which she often grows to resent) often remarks about how I don't, and that she's a bit envious. I tend to partake only in the gatherings that I feel a sincere interest in. This has kept my mind and time clear of a bunch of busyness and having to think about things, people, and drama that would only distract me from what I really want to experience. People say it is tough to say no. While it can be a challenge at times, when you consider how draining or toxic the wrong-fit people can be on your life, career, and family - in reality it's much easier. Not just because they have opinions that differ from yours. The world would certainly be a boring place indeed if we were all of the same opinion, right? Diversity is good. Questioning of opinions is good. Provoking new thoughts, ideas, even ideologies is healthy stuff. But those folks that cross the line by berating or belittling, or seemingly aren’t capable of a positive impact on your life? Those folks may be just the ones you need to not only filter out of your social media feed, but also out of your daily life.
Why? Because toxic people and influences inhibit your ability to grow to your full potential. Their negative expression often holds you back, challenges your strength, and maybe even your self-worth. Thankfully, no one really has or should be given that kind of control or power over your life and dreams. You are in the driver’s seat. The question is, are your hands on the wheel?
I encourage you to recognize the truth – that you are the one who determines who influences your days, your goals, your success – and even how you handle or manage failures. There’s a great quote by Hans Hasen that says, “People inspire you, or they drain you. PICK THEM WISELY.” The cool thing is that we do get to pick. Every day is a matter of choice in terms of who you let into your sphere. Will you look to mentors who can lift you up? Friends who are always there? Teachers or trainers or coaches who inspire you to shake off limitations and create substantial growth? It’s up to you.
Whether you’re scrolling through a social media feed or connecting with people out here in the real world, choose wisely the “friends” you follow and “un-follow”. Will that always be easy? Of course not. But here’s the thing – it’s not only all right to set boundaries, it’s really a well-being must. Figure out what your personal boundaries are and don’t be afraid to hold firm to them. Go to where you are lovingly drawn, to those who are of sincere interest, or those who share a similar passion for life. You are each other's path to more of what each of you want! Hanging out with the wrong-fit people inhibits your growth and theirs, so you're not doing each other any favors.
Say yes to what's "it" for you and no to what is "not it" for you. You need not sacrifice. And, remember, this is not about judgment. Judgment serves no one, especially you. Everyone is on their path at their pace. This is about choice. This one important shift is a huge step that can be the difference between success and failure, positive and negative relationships, and healthy versus an unhealthy life. Be a your own best friend and choose wisely!
Consistency is More Vital Now Than Ever Before
By Six Figure Real Estate Coach Roberta Ross
There was a program on the radio the other day that featured a lot of what people would call, “one-shot-wonders”. Those artists that knocked it out of the park with one song, then were rarely, if ever heard from again. It makes you think, “what happened?” These people were clearly talented, had what it took to reach the top, so why just the one hit? It reminded me a little of some real estate agents I’ve met. Eager, talented, and full of action – ONCE. They showed up strong once and got a listing. Awesome-right? Absolutely. But every day is a new day in this business. There’s no resting on your laurels, ask any top producers out there. They’ll tell you that no one, not even the heavy hitters have the luxury of not showing up day after day, year after year.
“But Roberta, it’s hard!” I know, but it doesn’t have to be as hard as some make it. Not when you put the right systems in place and treat your business like the business that it is. And those same top producers I just mentioned will tell you that it gets easier the longer you stay at it. Why? Because you will develop that brand name awareness that will help drive referrals month after month. They will tell you that they no longer have to wonder where their next commission is coming from or IF they have another commission coming in. They can count on referrals and business from their sphere of influence and farm because they are actively engaged in reaching out to those VIPs on a consistent basis.
Step one: Get your database of friends, family, past clients, and in a manageable system so you can market to them. This is where most agents break down. They feel as if they have to start with a giant, end-total number. To which I like to pull out this gem from Arthur Ashe, “Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.” If your goal is to have 1,000 people in your database but you currently only have 120 in, don’t wait for the 1,000 to be inputted. At least get SOMETHING out to the 120! Then make it a goal to add people in manageable numbers and start the process to them as well. Once you have your database filled, then your next goal can be to add a person for every day of the year. It’s really not hard when you get the hang of it.
Step two: Decide what to send. There are so many great services out there for sending personalized direct mail affordably and easily. There are also some terrific and fun email services that provide content for agents to send via email as well.
Some recommendations would be:
Step three: Commit to sending out something once a month for a whole year and do it. When you do you will be creating a habit that will grow your business in such a powerful way.
Step four: Follow up. You should be reaching out to every member of your sphere of influence at least twice per year. The direct mail or email you send will warm that call and make it easy for you to connect – not to SELL them on anything or pressure them to list, but to build that relationship with them and let them know you are a resource that is there for them WHENEVER they might need assistance.
Step five: Get out there! Meet fresh faces, make new contacts, and start building relationships with those new people so that they will soon know you, like you, and trust you enough to do business with them – that moves them from “prospect” to sphere of influence. Remember – you’re adding one per day – or 365 new people per year to your base!
Statistics tell us one in every twelve will refer business or do business with you themselves each year. That sounds like great motivation to me to build and maintain that list!
I’d love to hear your thoughts! Leave them here or find me on Facebook! Happy listing!
First, Second, and Every Impression
By Six Figure Real Estate Coach Roberta Ross
Every day you have an opportunity to make not just a good impression but a great one. From your attitude to your branding, your business acumen to your intention – every interaction you have with others affects your reputation and the integrity level you show to the world. At this time of year, many entrepreneurs are already looking at their business planning to design the path to help them reach and even exceed their goals in the coming year. Be sure to take the time to examine what message you are sending in all that you do.
Here are some questions to ask yourself and things to keep on your radar:
- Business relationships. Are you known as someone easy to work with? A competitor – but one who is respectful, professional, and fair? Do you treat referrals (and the people doing the referring) like VIPs? Are all of your transactions honest and above board? Developing and nurturing strong, respectful relationships with your fellow agents and entrepreneurs will mean the difference between continued referrals, respect amongst peers, and a solid reputation in your market.
- Customer/Client relationships. Are you staying in touch with your sphere of influence in some way every month? When was the last time you reached out to your past customers either by phone or in person? Do you have a solid database that includes all your past and current customers and when was the last time you updated it? Staying top of mind with the folks that already have liked and trusted you enough to do business with you is one of the best things you can do to earn repeat business and referrals. Instead of always chasing NEW customers – consider taking excellent care of the ones you already have.
- Manners matter. In a world where everyone seems to be staring at their smartphones 24/7 – do you put yours away when engaged in a conversation with someone? Are you present in that conversation, actively listening and engaging in what is being said? Are you making eye contact and making the other person feel as if they are important? Do you remember to say please and thank you? Both personally and professionally, presenting yourself as someone who is well-mannered and personable is NOT old fashioned, it’s a smart and powerful way to cultivate great relationships.
- Timeliness vs. tardiness. Not to get old school again, but being late in today’s world still stings of unprofessionalism and lack of respect for the other parties concerned. Do you make it a point to always be on time or even a few minutes early for appointments? Do you honor a time commitment when you make it? Show you care enough to be on time.
Whether you are meeting someone for the first time, or the 101st time, be sure when you step into your day that you are putting your best self forward. It is the mark of a good salesperson, and a common denominator amongst top producers.
And You’ll Figure Out Your How
By America’s Six Figure Real Estate Coach Roberta Ross
There’s something about people who are absolutely passionate about what they do. Business, success, joy, creativity – it all seems to come easy to them. It’s as if they innately know how to move forward and stay on the front edge of what they want. I believe it is because they have their WHY all figured out, so the HOW is a natural progression from that. German philosopher Frederick Nietzsche once said, ‘He who has a why can endure any how.’ He was on to something. When you have your WHY – whatever that is – it fuels the rest of your life with purpose.
That “why” is a very personal thing however, and at first glance it may appear obvious, especially to a salesperson. You might think, “My why is to make $100,000 a year.” But the real question is what’s behind that particular why? What would $100,000 or $500,000 a year do for you? And why is that important to you? Maybe your why isn’t really monetary at all – but that the funds would provide the REAL why. Perhaps it is to give your kids an amazing life filled with security and comfort. Maybe it’s to travel the world and have the means to check off your personal bucket list or to have the means to give back philanthropically? How would it change your life in a way that’s so intense that you’d be willing to work harder, smarter, and longer just to achieve and maintain that level of production?
Here are four ways to start to find your why and then your how:
- Set aside some time. Your why is important enough to spend a little time wrapping your head around it. For many people it takes a weekend away or at least a few hours reflection with a notebook and a pen and an open mind to start the process.
- Write down what you’re passionate about. We all have things that make us light up with excitement and that we feel compelled to do or achieve. Anything with that much fire is usually a pretty good foundation for a why. Is it an achievement such as being the best in your field, or your market or your organization? Is it security and never having to worry again where the next commission is? Is it about family and friends? Make a solid list then narrow it down to the top two or three that you feel strongest about.
- Determine what it would take in a broad stroke sense to make your why a reality. This is the foundation for the how. Would it take a certain dollar volume? Production level An assistant? A collaboration with others? Brainstorm your how on paper or with a trusted mentor to come up with a starting trajectory.
- Find ways to weave your why into your business. I love to see agents who bring their passion for their why into what they do every day. Those that love bringing life into their communities for example, may participate or lead charity drives and meet and greets. Others who are passionate about boating, golf or horses, may seek out local clubs and organizations to find like-minded people. Business offers many springboard opportunities to for you to engage in the things your naturally desire. There is always, always a way to integrate your passions and your business acumen.
I love helping people find their why and turn it into an action plan that makes them excited to get up every day and do what they do. It’s the kind of foundation that keeps agents from burning out, or living out of balance, because to them, there is a higher purpose to the work they do. When you have that – one deal going south, an unreasonable seller, or a fickle buyer isn’t such a big deal. You’re on a path for a bigger cause. The funny thing about it is, when buyers and sellers work with someone that is fueled by that kind of why, they feel it, and want to do everything in their power to help you achieve it. How’s that for a win-win?
Go find your why, and if you need help, let me know. Find me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/6FigureRealEstateCoach and share your story!
The Answer May Surprise You…
By America’s Six Figure Real Estate Coach Roberta Ross
When I am giving a talk on lead generation, I’ll often ask the audience what they get paid to do. Typically, the list of responses I get are: buy houses, sell houses, close, buy and sell, help buyers and sellers, list houses, list and sell houses. Some get more creative and suggest “to help others achieve the American dream.”
In order for a business to succeed, it is critical to know what you get paid to do, or what you’re most important revenue-producing activities are. Meaning, if you eliminate these activities, your business can make no money and would literally collapse. The above list of most common responses is a clear indicator that most agents do not have a clear understanding of what their highest priority, revenue-producing activities are.
What you get paid to do should run like a tape inside your head – always driving you and your business forward. Let’s look closer at the responses I get to the question, “What do you get paid to do?” to illustrate my point. One of the most common is “I get paid to buy houses.” I love this one, because for the most part, real estate agents do not even buy houses. They represent others who buy them. Real estate agents do not get paid to close. The closing agent gets paid to close. In fact, a real estate agent does not even have to be present at a closing for it to happen, or for them to get paid. Helping others is important, but it’s so vague. It is very difficult to be a top-producer or even move to the next income bracket without having this understanding and applying it as a priority in your business. So what DO real estate agents get paid to do?
If you want to turn yourself into a lead-generating machine, your best bet is to see yourself as someone who gets paid to build relationships and provide exceptional service. The mere adoption of this concept can be career-transforming.
Build Relationships. Your first and foremost revenue-producing activity is to build relationships.
Provide Exceptional Service. Your second revenue-producing activity is to give exceptional service. I’d imagine there are many who would take issue with this one. In fact, it would be easy to create an argument that it is not necessary to be exceptional to be successful.
I imagine we all know people who are successful and are not exceptional at what they do. Those who fall in this category probably make up for their lack of good service with some other quality. I am not suggesting it is not possible, but I am saying that it is the most important if you want to turn your business into a referral-generating machine and have the greatest amount of business with the least amount of time, money and energy input to create it.
Remember more than a single piece of real estate, to thrive in this industry, your business and your focus – needs to be on PEOPLE. Delivering the tools, skills, information, and connection they need to continuously trust you with their business and their referrals. When you’ve got that focus crystal clear in your vision for the year, you’ll soon find everything else falling neatly into place.
As always, I’d love to hear your thoughts! Leave them below – and happy listing this season, and remember I’m here if you need a coaching boost!
The CHOICE is YOURS
By America’s Six Figure Real Estate Coach Roberta Ross
There’s no getting around it. You will be turned down. There are listings you will not get. There are buyers who will choose to work with someone else. There are offers that will be rejected. There are closings that will fall through in the final hour. This is part of doing business and no one in business, including the most exceptional real estate agents, avoids this fact. So being successful is not a matter of if you will get rejected, but rather how you respond to rejection that will make all the difference.
How many millions of times have we seen the expression “SWSWSWSW”? For those not familiar, it stands for “Some Will, Some Won’t, So What, Someone’s Waiting.” This mindset strategy prevails because it is a very powerful one to adopt. It reminds us not to get hung up on the present moment or any one person, prospect, transaction, change in the market, to cause a downturn in our efforts. Find an empowering expression such as “Do Not Let the Past Get in the Way of Your REMARKABLE future,” or find an affirmation that speaks to you. Resonates with you. Helps to keep you on track.
Respond vs. React.
Remember, the way you choose to respond to these events will determine your level of success. Rather than wallow in despair or self-pity, a great trigger for me when something falls through is to ask the question “What can I do in this moment to attract more business?” Bumps in the road give you a great opportunity to learn and grow and to demonstrate your dedicated professionalism and leadership to your clients. You can show that you may not be in control of events, but you are in control of your response, and that constructive response will only give your clients more respect and confidence in you; which, in turn, lead to more business and referrals. Everything that happens is an opportunity for you to learn, grow, and give. Again, it’s your choice, and the ones you make will direct your future.
The great thing about this business is that there are no limits. No glass ceilings. Nothing to stop you from getting to wherever you want to go. When you keep that in mind, it makes the bumps in the road, the challenges you encounter, and the trials you endure seem a little more worth it. Keep your mindset in check and take every no as one step closer to the next yes and remember – we’re here for you every step of the way.
I’d love to hear your thoughts – leave them below or visit us on our Facebook page today!
By Julie Escobar
With the second quarter in full swing now, and spring re-energizing agents everywhere, I wanted to turn our attention this month to that most-important business foundation must-have – the sphere of influence. To do that, I turned to a good friend and amazing speaker and coach – Roberta Ross. She’s successfully helping agents not only earn to their highest potential — but doing so with passion and purpose. I asked her if she’d share some of her secrets of success with us this week, and of course, she graciously agreed.
Here’s an inside peek at our interview…
Q: Roberta, first of all thanks so much for your time! You’re always fun and insightful to interview! In a time when our industry is still, in many ways, recovering – I wanted to talk a little about the ways new agents (or RENEWED agents) can take the best practices of top producers and adopt them in their own careers so that they can hopefully avoid the dramatic commission roller coaster that so many agents get on. What are some ways to build your foundation (or re-build in some cases) the right way?
A: Of course, Julie- I’m always happy to share! I would first say that in ANY business it’s critical to always keep the fundamentals in place. I like to use the analogy that your business is like a pot of water – you’ve got to keep it at a boil all the time. You can’t take it off the burner or it gets cold – right? That happens with agents too. They get busy doing other things and they take their eye of their “pot of water” and it cools off, then they have to exert all that energy to get things cooking again. Successful people know they have to always keep that pot simmering, or keep focused on the book of business that is generating the referrals. It’s fine to add new things to the mix—social media comes to mind, but only if you can assimilate those new things into your routine while keeping your eye on the prize which is maintaining those relationships.
Q: Great analogy Roberta – I’m stealing it and making it part of the article title! You and I have talked many times about the role mindset plays in the success or failure of a career – and relationships. Can you share your thoughts on that?
A: Absolutely. We’ve often discussed the Prosperity vs. Scarcity mindset. The difference being that with a scarcity mindset, everything equals fear. “There’s not enough, nothing’s working or there’s no opportunities.” With a prosperity mindset the opposite is true, “opportunities are abundant, what can I do NOW to attract more listings, more customer relationships, and more success?” Remember this: Seeking out what you want will always outperform the fear of not getting enough.” Fear is not the mindset in which to make good business decisions. Open your mind to possibilities and give that fear a rest!
Q: Love that! I know one of the powerful things you teach is the power of niche marketing – can you give us some insights about adding niche markets to your sphere?
A: Sure. One of the first things agents ask is “How am I going to stand OUT?” What’s misguided for many agents though is that they don’t realize that JUST standing out and getting noticed isn’t it. What successful people do is create an IDENTITY that is not about them so much as it is about what resonates with their prospects – what’s meaningful and important to their customers. Some are so busy STANDING OUT that they don’t present themselves with clarity to their customers. (And a confused customer is rarely a happy – or a referring customer!) When your customers see your marketing materials, read your blog, connect with your social media – they should see themselves in what you offer and think – “Yeah – that’s the one for me!”
I’ll give you an example. Most speakers use their names as their identity right? (Most agents do too!) Now imagine if I sent out some direct mail to an area where my name wasn’t as well known and I decided to send three postcards out. The first one I’d send as Roberta Ross, LLC. That wouldn’t mean much to those agents right? So the next one I send out I’m going to send out as Marketing Solutions, Inc. Still – not going to get many raised eyebrows will it? Now the last one I send out I send as Six Figure Real Estate Coach. What resonates more with a real estate agent? My name, a broad term like ‘marketing’ or Six Figure Real Estate? Six figures of course! That’s the kind of clarity you want in your branding as well.
Niche marketing also gives you the ability to go from starter to expert more quickly because by zeroing in on that niche – you have clarity and your customers have clarity. You’re not trying to be all things to all people or an expert at EVERYTHING. You become better, faster because you’re FOCUSED on a specific market – specific segment of people – and hopefully something you’re passionate about.
Q: Clarity is an AMAZING differentiator—for both the agent AND the prospect! Good advice. So where does an agent START?
A: Well, I’d say where any good business starts – building a database of the people you know first. Friends, family, colleagues, acquaintances, etc. – get them all into a format you can build on. From there you can build on that foundation and build out from it. You can add in social media networks like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIN. After all, the fundamentals haven’t changed – you have to continuously CONNECT with the people in your sphere. Social media just gives us new way to reach out and connect one to many, as opposed to just one-to-one. You’ll want to use all the tools in the chest though to make sure you are engaging people in different ways – and especially in the ways that make sense for them.
Remember – you go the distance by doing the two things that agents continuously get paid to do:
- Build relationships
- Provide exceptional service
Get out there and engage – create new opportunities to do those two things over and over again. Some ways to engage…
- Direct mail. It’s not dead, in fact, there’s more opportunity than ever since fewer people are using it.
- Hosting events. For some agents – a great conduit for providing exceptional service and growing their book of business has been to host events or workshops in the niche of their choice. Hosting events for first time home buyers, investors, expireds, FSBOs, — any focused group is a terrific way to differentiate yourself as an expert while making those all-important connections.
- Social media. There’s no denying that these platforms are most definitely extending agents ability to reach out and stay engaged. I would just say be clear in your purpose, be true to yourself and your IDENTITY that we talked about earlier – and don’t use it as a reason not to interact one-on-one with your sphere as well.
Before we move on though, let me be clear about what I mean in terms of “exceptional service.” I do mean staying informed, continuing your education, building your skills, becoming your best in terms of what you do so that you can be the best advocate, resource and agent for your customers. I do not mean however that you should do EVERYTHING they ask, and allow them to own you. Service isn’t always about saying yes – it’s about doing what’s best and necessary in the best interests of your clients.
If you’re going to lead – you’ve always got to be in learning mode. Because when you STOP learning, stop working on getting better, guess what? The water stops boiling…and you have to start starting over.
Q: I agree with that 100%! You know, Roberta, one of the things I appreciate about you and the message you get across from the stage is how important humor and balance is to a healthy career – not to mention healthy person, relationships, and life! What’s the secret?
A: No secret really and I love this question! Whenever I’m speaking or working with my coaching members or involved in any project really, I always take some time to remember NOT to take myself too seriously and I share that advice with the people I work with. When we take ourselves too seriously, we’re filled with ego—and egos are by nature filled with worry about the past and the future. That takes us out of the present and in doing so – creates a situation in which you are less than authentic. Real humor lies in the now, really being present. It allows you to embrace what’s going on and find the good stuff in it. I do take business seriously and I want my audience and coaching members to as well, but with humor, and the ability to laugh and be light at heart. It keeps you on your toes and in the present!
You know, humor is about more than just fun. It’s deeper than that. If we lose humor, it leaves room for that scarcity mindset to creep in. Don’t let that happen! See the humor – and let it into your life both personally and professionally.
Thanks so much Roberta for all your insights. You’ve given people lots of fuel for thought in terms of keeping their sphere of influence simmering and their business flourishing!
If you’d like to learn more about Roberta and Six Figure Real Estate Coaching, you can visit her online at www.SixFigureRealEstateCoach.com or follow her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/6FigureRealEstateCoach. While you’re there, be sure to look us up at www.facebook.com/ProspectsPLUS.
If you’d like to learn more about our powerful, direct response tools for consistently staying in touch with your sphere and keeping your business simmering, contact us today at email@example.com, call us at 866.405.3638 or visit us online at www.prospectsplus.com. Mention or use promo code GROW10 to save 10% off any order this month!
In challenging economies, our sense of net worth and emotional stability very often rise and fall like the stock market ticker on our television screens.
Finding that much-desired feeling of empowerment and security may seem tougher to come by, but by shifting your view to what is possible, you find enormous opportunity. The value of your stock is not based on what is, but upon your response to what is. Top agents rely on action, tenacity and good old fashioned people skills to keep their stock high and their stress to a minimum.
Building your “stock” in today’s market has much more to do with your daily activities than your investment portfolio. A great number of successful businesses and extraordinary entrepreneurs are born from tough markets. The question is, will you be one of them? In this economy it’s important for serious real estate professionals to tap into what can be done NOW – that means, investing in yourself, your business, and your future. Here are four key strategies to ensure that your “stock” is on the rise.
Build your inventory. It is listings that drive this business. Your income is determined by your inventory. For example, if you only have a handful of listings, you can’t with any certainty “bank” on closing transactions this month. However, if you maintain an inventory of 15-20 or more listings, and they are PRICED right, you can trust that you’ll have a steady flow of income. Markets are always in flux and when sales contracts are suddenly on the rise and buyers are on the move, there is opportunity for those who are prepared. By keeping your inventory in place, you are positioned to capitalize on these market shifts. Whose listings they purchase is entirely up to you!
Price them right. We’ve touched on it already, but pricing has never been more critical. I’ve heard agents say, “Any listing is better than no listing,” and that couldn’t be further from the truth. We are currently in a market saturated with fence-sitters – buyers who people who are waiting out the market to buy and sellers who are waiting to sell at their price. It seems to be a perpetual game of “how low—or how high—can we go?” Overpriced listings that sit only compound the problem of an over-glutted market and damage your reputation.
Real estate guru Darryl Davis offers some great dialogue for competitive pricing: “Mr. and Mrs. Seller, if the market is going down in price, we can’t price it at what the market IS; we have to price it at where the market is GOING to get it sold.” ProspectsPLUS! users are getting a lot of mileage from the Merchandising Review and Price Pyramid found in their agent marketing software. It is important to include tools and visual aids in your presentations that demonstrate the importance of pricing right. Why? They help the agent convey to sellers how critical it is to price at or below market value in today’s economy if they wish to get their home sold sooner rather than later.
Get organized! There are signs across the nation that our markets are picking up. If you don’t get organized, systemized and prioritized now – when will you EVER have a better opportunity? When business is at a full-court-press agents tend to ignore all those “little things” like staying in touch with their current book of business. Trust us when we tell you that if you don’t know who your customers are and have a system in place to remind them that you are there for them consistently; they will most definitely return the favor. Build your systems now, and they will serve you for years to come.
Build relationships. Sales skills and negotiations aside, this is and always will be a people business and people do business with those they trust. Our trying times have made consumers all the more anxious to ensure they have the best possible advocate and resources on their side. Gone are the days of just “getting by” in terms of customer service and relationship building. People expect more than they ever have and certainly have more exposure than ever to your competition because of the internet. In Gary Keller’s book, The Millionaire Real Estate Agent, he shares that statistically, one in every twelve people in your sphere of influence will result in a transaction per year if you’ve stayed in touch with them. Top that with the studies conducted by the National Association of Realtors which tell us that top producers credit their sphere of influence for more than 74% of their business. Marketing analysts tell us that it takes roughly $10.00 of new business to replace $1.00 of lost business. What does that tell you about where YOUR marketing dollars should be spent?
Remember, success occurs when preparation meets opportunity. Building your stock is the preparation that will position you for success. More than anything else, your best investment strategy in ANY market is an open mind, a positive perspective, a willingness to continuously fine tune your skills and connect with people. Keep growing, learning and taking action and you’ll find yourself pulling ahead of your competition and staying there.
Roberta Ross is President of Six Figure Real Estate Coach, Inc. She has been in the real estate business for more 15 years. She travels nationwide speaking to thousands of real estate professionals and coaches agents on marketing, lead generation, and business strategy. Her unique blend of business and speaking experience enables her to educate, entertain and motivate real estate professionals to achieve their goals and beyond. To get great tips and insights for your business click here to like her page!
Julie Escobar is a syndicated columnist with more than 20 years of sales and marketing experience in the real estate and speaking industries and is passionate about providing the tools, techniques and solutions brokers and agents need to build extraordinary careers.