Friday, December 15, 2017

Julie Escobar

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Julie brings more than 20 years of sales and marketing experience in the real estate and speaking industries. From copy writing to convention management, you will find her consistently seeking out innovative solutions, fresh ideas, as well as creative products and tools for the real estate industry.

Roberta RossThree Keys to Thriving in Today’s Economy
By Roberta Ross, National Speaker
You’ve no doubt heard the saying, “When the going gets tough, the tough get going,” right? While it’s a great adage, I believe more to the point in today’s tightening market is, “When the going gets tough, the tough dig deeper.”Tough times call for tough measures, thicker skin, smarter strategies, finite focus and the ability to embrace adversities. I am reminded of philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche’s words, “That which does not kill us makes us stronger.” Well, friends, since it’s not our time to go, let’s seek the strength to not merely survive, but thrive in any market. Here are three ways to do just that:

1. Turn challenges into opportunities. As Floyd Wickman put it, adversity can be an anchor or a rocket booster, depending on your attitude and your actions. I invite you to see today’s market changes for the tremendous opportunities they present. Challenges are great conduits for change. They force us to examine what we are doing and take our professionalism, focus and efficiency to the next level. Look to the agents who have successfully navigated tough markets and real adversity in their careers, and you’ll discover that many of them made more money, captured more market share and developed some of their sharpest skills as salespeople and negotiators during down economic times. hy? Simple: Timing is everything, and when they looked around and saw 80% or better of their colleagues in the industry going into fear mode or leaving the business altogether, they recognized the opportunity to ignite the rocket fuel before them and take their careers to the next level. Do you want to be weighed down by an anchor or realize new career heights? The choice is yours.

2. Clean house. I’m not talking about dusting the baseboards here. In a changing market, you need to tidy up your thought processes, habits and priorities. Having these three things at the top of your spring cleaning list sets the stage for a fresher outlook, a streamlined business plan and a clearer sense of direction:

A. Thought processes. Your thoughts are the springboard for your actions, and your actions determine your direction. Do you really want to start that whole process with a negative? Of course not. There’s enough negative news out there to go around; feel free to leave your share on the table, television or driveway when you head into work each day. Your brain is still the best computer in the world and, like all computers, it is susceptible to what we used to call “garbage in, garbage out.” Feed your mind with affirmations for success and viable information that helps you help your clients.

B. Habits. Old habits do indeed die hard, but kicking those unproductive habits off of our daily to-do lists is critical to building momentum. I’ll give you an example: I know many of you are bloggers and enjoy incredible success from this online networking portion of your business. I caution you, however, to make sure that your “blogging time” doesn’t cut into your “prospecting time” with live, voice-to-voice, face-to-face contacts. Many of you are willing to spend hours designing marketing pieces, newsletters, postcards and business letters or redecorating your office space. While that’s all wonderful, it doesn’t make you money. I challenge you to focus on building GOOD habits such as committing at least an “Hour of Power” each day of no-nonsense, full-tilt prospecting.

C. Priorities. In our seminars, we teach real foundation builders for salespeople. Understanding and IMPLEMENTING basics such as smart budgeting, measurability and consistency is key. One of my favorite foundation cornerstones is “work high-priority activities first.” Professionals and entrepreneurs who are looking to put themselves ahead of the competition and achieve repeatable, sustainable success in ANY market stay true to the items closest to their revenue line. As a REALTOR®, you get paid to prospect, present and close. Make it a priority, then, to prospect, consistently fine-tune and tweak your presentation and learn to close like the pro you are. Although some agents might disagree on which is most important, all will agree that successful agents need to be good at all three. If you are strong and confident in your presentation and close, it takes some fear out of prospecting. Ifyou are terrific at prospecting, you know you’ll be in front of more people and forced to perfect your presentation and close. Stick to these top priorities and delegate the busywork that bogs you down, and your revenue line will build before
your eyes!

3. Raise your standards. Shed the negative influences, thoughts and habits that tether weaker agents to mediocre income levels. Toughen up, get back to basics and dig deep when it comes to the core activities that will help you weather any market:

A. Stay close. Your sphere of influence is the lifeblood of your business, both in “now” revenue and future referrals. Stay in touch consistently, creatively and with care,
EVERY month.

B. Farm effectively. It’s more important to reach the people who count than to count the people you reach. In other words, know your best customers, farm using targeted data mining to find more of the same, and concentrate your efforts, energy and marketing dollars on the people with the highest likelihood of working with you.

C. Get out there. Are you an active, visible part of your community? Today’s consumers look for people they can trust and communicate with on a first-name basis. Forge those relationships with smart networking and community involvement.

D. Put systems in place. We all know that profit and productivity in a challenging market is no small thing and not easily achieved by those who “fly by their seat.” Top producers ensure that systems are in place to automate their marketing, allow for checks and balances and provide a constant stream of prospects. Systemize! It will save your sanity and help you earn top dollar!

Now more than ever, it is time to dig deep and find those nooks and niche markets that fit your personality. It is time to carefully measure your results while remaining a visible presence in the market. It is time to know what you are made of and, as always, where you are headed by way of goals and dreams. The right goals, mindset and attitude coupled with a fierce determination to control YOUR economy regardless of THE economy will win results and instill not only survival skills, but also the kind of spark and staying power that most entrepreneurs strive for.

Go ahead and get tough! We’re right here with you.

Bring TOUGH-MARKET skills to your office! Visit www.mastermarketingmeeting.com to learn about our FREE 30-minute workshop that combines the power of tools and technology with the skill set and experience you need to ignite those rocket boosters! Call Julie today at 1.866.405.3641 to find out more!

“I am fairly new in real estate and was asked to participate in bank days, where we sit in the lobby of the bank and hand out cards and listing sheets. I had not received any leads that worked out until last week. I printed out some of the flyers from ProspectsPLUS!, and I was amazed. I got 7 leads and one is an investor that I am working with. I used the ‘Are you still renting?’ flyer and the ‘First-Time Buyer’ flyer. They really work! I will never do bank days or the Costco road show days again without them. I know now that marketing is easy with your product. Thank you so much!”

“MLSmailings.com is truly the future of real estate lead generation. Fast, simple and out the door–and we don’t even have to touch it? That’s just SMART PROSPECTING! This is a system that works and a company with integrity. To us, that’s a winning combination! If you want results in a changing market, learn from this team!”

VoteEach election year brings great (and not-so-great) debates, political rhetoric, spotlights on important issues and, of course, a surplus of candidates campaigning for your vote.I recently stopped to consider how similar that scenario is to our current real estate climate. Consumers today are inundated with ‘candidates’ vying for their business in markets that are no more or less competitive than what we see in the political arena. So I challenge you to look at your business, client care and character, then ask yourself, “Will I get their vote?”

Elections are won and lost every day for a wide variety of reasons. Let your prospects and sphere of influence VIPs know that you are undoubtedly the best candidate for the job by mastering six keys to winning the race:

1. Earn their trust. The onslaught of negative press that the real estate industry is weathering these days is remarkable. Coupled with a tightened economy and an extremely competitive sales arena, it’s no wonder many buyers and sellers are leery of anyone bearing a business card that suggests ‘salesperson’ of any kind.

Trust is an earned privilege that opens the doors, minds and hearts of customers. It comes from walking the right walk, talking the right talk and consistently showing integrity. If you stay in touch often enough, show your sincere care at every turn and fiercely protect your professionalism throughout your career, you will easily move to the front of the pack-earning the trust and business of new and existing customers alike.

2. Embody quiet confidence. In a shifting market, agents aren’t the only ones searching for ways to be their personal best. Consumers, too, are looking for answers about how the economy and market trends affect their future.

When seeking advice and options, consumers typically will consult the professional who projects the most confidence-the one who they believe can act as a trusted resource, answer their questions and help them realize their real estate goals.

Notice I mentioned ‘quiet’ confidence. There is a fine line between agents who are afraid to ask for the business and timid about sharing their opinions or ideas and those who think they know everything and come across as cocky or overbearing. Find the line. Embody the confidence you need to do your job effectively and feel good about your ability to help people, and adopt a demeanor of service. Just as we vote for those who we believe can guide our community, state or nation, we seek confident, trustworthy individuals who we can trust with our business.

3. Employ best practices. Ever notice how, when people run for election, every possible skeleton comes out of their closet? One of the things that will quickly send clients into the “arms” of another agent is unethical or unprofessional behavior. Your business is an extension of you, your character and your reputation, and it includes every member of your team.

If you have made mistakes, cut corners or had missteps in the past, learn from them, acknowledge them and put every measure possible in place to ensure that you are living the Code of Ethics you swore to adhere to. Put customers’ needs first. Make customer service a priority. Be honest in the promises you make, the words you speak and the actions you take each and every day. While you’re at it, the ol’ “golden rule” is a pretty good benchmark for smart business, as well.

4. Promote forward thinking. Savvy agents know that being great at what they do and living the life they imagine requires being proactive rather than reactive. Proactive agents know when the market is ready to adjust, and they adjust their business accordingly. They seek out new knowledge bases, training, tools, techniques and solutions that will keep them far ahead of the competition. They are fast in their thinking and on their feet as they focus on the niche markets and high-priority activities that sustain repeatable success. They empower themselves with high-energy, high-results motivation, inspiration and information.

5. Know the issues. This is a big one on the political stage. Candidates often lob jagged barbs and pointed questions at their opponents as to their full understanding of or position on the wide spectrum of important issues that their constituents face.

Having a grasp on the scope of issues today’s home buyers and sellers face and being able to offer solutions that can help them navigate the constant shifts, twists and turns before them are critical components to winning. Many of your competitors will take the broad-stroke approach-latching onto “buzzwords” or “topics du jour” without taking the time to fully comprehend the finer subtleties, their effect on customers or even the impact each issue has on their own business.

Dig in, and learn as much as possible about the issues, concerns and questions your clients face. Knowledge is power-in politics, in real estate and in life.

6. Stand front and center. NAR statistics tell us that 80% of home sellers would use their same agent again, yet only 11% do. Why? Because their agents don’t stay in touch. Out of sight, out of mind is not a formula for success for anyone looking to win an election or stay in the business of real estate.

Stay top of mind and continuously earn the trust, attention and business of your “constituents” by standing front and center in their scope of friends and associates. That “shaking hands and kissing babies” thing is not just for those seeking the Oval Office, it is a very real part of getting out among the people, being part of your community, making friends and listening to what people need, want and expect.

When the market’s tough and money is tight, your first reaction might be to hibernate and wait for times to change. That’s normal, but if you truly want to be a leader, then cut costs in areas other than marketing and networking.

Leaders are not afraid to stand out in a crowd. They want people to know their name, face and what they stand for. They appreciate it when their voice is heard. They are passionate about meeting new people, discovering new opportunities, opening new doors and expanding their reach. So go ahead and take center stage… that’s where the winners are.

In a race for president-as in the race for new business, referrals, customer loyalty and a competitive edge-every vote counts. What you do this year and throughout your career by way of implementing smart strategies, empowering yourself with a wide spectrum of knowledge and staying true to the customers and communities you serve will determine whether you become-and remain-the frontrunner in the race for consumer votes.

Now go run a clean campaign, let the world know what you stand for, and I’ll see you at the polls!

Download our FREE BusinessBASETM system and learn more creative ways to boost production while saving time and money at http://www.prospectsplus.com/. While you’re there, sign up for our FREE Master Marketing NewsletterTM.

We are happy to schedule a Master Marketing MeetingTM for your office, as well, to share systems and strategies that will sharpen your agents’ competitive edge. Call Julie today at 1.66.405.3641 or visit www.mastermarketingmeeting.com to find out more about this results-producing workshop.

Go GreenGlobal warming, landfill shortages and dwindling natural resources are all key topics of conversation among the ecologically conscious. Knowing where to start doing your part can be tough. My advice? Start with the man (or woman) in the mirror.

With all the pressures of a career, life, a shifting market and family responsibilities, you might be surprised at just how many toxic thoughts can take root and influence your perspective, production and momentum. Just as our bodies look and feel different when we remove much of the chemical-laden food and drink from our diet, our minds also work better when they’re free of contamination.

Clean it up! Take an inventory of your mind, your body and your days as if you were taking part in a volunteer park-preservation project. Turn over those rocks of adversity that are weighing you down, and take out the trash. Understand that although there are issues such as dropping market values or tightening loan qualifications to deal with, they do not have to be the clutter that keeps us from moving forward every day.

Remember the old computer adage garbage in, garbage out? The same is true for our minds, invariably the best computers in the world. What can we put in to get the results we’re looking for? We need to start by asking the right questions.

For example, when things are not going the way you want them to, instead of a downward-spiral question such as, “Why don’t people ever send me referrals?” ask yourself, “What can I do to be a more exceptional real estate professional?” or “What systems can I implement to attract more referrals?” You will be astonished at the new ideas, solutions and tools that propel you toward greatness-and how much more business seems to effortlessly come your way.

Develop good habits! Remember when you first started recycling and had to get used to using separate containers for plastics and newspapers? It felt strange at first and took a real effort to change your habits. The same is true with thinking organically. Consciously take the time to replace negative thoughts or activities with positive ones. Asking yourself the right questions is a perfect trigger for changing your mindset.

When you find yourself in the company of the office gossip or naysayer who is more than willing to dish the latest dirt or explain in dizzying detail how no one can earn a living in this market, step away. When you find yourself spending hours surfing the Internet for celebrity sightings or world disasters, step away. When you are locked in yet another futile conversation with a friend who cannot or will not get out of their own way and is vested in keeping you firmly entrenched in their drama, step away.

As a salesperson, you have three very clear priorities if you want to meet-or exceed-your goals: prospecting, presenting and closing. If what you are doing or saying during the time you have set aside for business is not directly related to those three tasks, you need to reevaluate. In your off hours, if you are not doing or saying the things that better your life, bring you and your family joy, strengthen your relationships and give you peace of mind, you need to reevaluate. A good life, like our precious natural resources, is something we must treasure and protect with our whole being.

Recycle your best day! Think about your best business day ever. Maybe you closed a huge deal, nailed a listing presentation, locked down every appointment you tried to set or saw your name at the top of the office leaderboard. Close your eyes, and think about what that felt like. What sounds did you hear? What did you see and sense throughout the day? Capture that mental picture and, more important, the feeling that accomplishment brought.

Got it? You have just mastered one of the mental tricks that top producers consistently use to recycle their best day ever. It is a fast way out of a slump, a great way to put power into your prospecting and the best way to keep negative thoughts at bay.

Think about it: When you have that feeling-that top-of-your-game mentality-who can stop you? Who can bring you down? No one! So the next time you pick up the phone to start prospecting or are about to go face-to-face for a big listing appointment, prepare yourself and your mind by conjuring up the memory and mindset of your best day!

Changing your business, your diet, your environment and your life to reflect what is best for you, your family and our world is a very personal choice for most. It takes reflection, research and the ability to manage resistance to change. Old habits die hard, and change for the majority of us is tough.

Walk through it, and reap the benefits. Think about the energy that you will find in a day where negative thoughts are never given a chance and your blessings are embraced with gratitude. Go green, and start moving toward a better life, a healthier career and strength you never thought possible! Sounds like a trend worth starting, don’t you think?

Call Julie today at 800.287.5710 or visit www.mastermarketingmeeting.com to find out how we can bring real world solutions to the agents in your office.  Smart lead generation, NOW tools and techniques and true foundation builders.  I can’t wait to hear from you!