Thursday, March 30, 2017

Steadily Getting Ready for a New Year Ahead

by Julie Escobar

I love the Seneca quote, “Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.” Or Floyd Wickman’s quote, “There’s nothing special about special people it’s what they DO that makes them special.”  What a great time of year for agents.  So many of our friends and clients are deep in preparation for the year ahead. Building marketing strategies, laying out budgets, meeting with mentors, and sharing ideas.  These are the folks that will not only finish out this year strong, but hit the ground running with a passion as we enter a new year and keep right on going to make 2017 their best year ever — long before it even starts.  How cool is that?

For our part, at ProspectsPLUS!, we are doing the same.  From our Master Marketing Schedule, (which you can download directly to your Google, Apple or Outlook calendars), to a line up of great new series, products and services for the year ahead.  We know that agents today need every tool they can get to compete in challenging markets, and we’re passionate about delivering those tools.

Now when you’re making your marketing list and business plan for 2017 (and checking it twice), please let us know how we can help you maximize your goals for the new year.  Here are just some of the things we can deliver:5 ways to build equity

  1. Fresh ideas  – Our Master Marketing Schedule is a strategic marketing plan specifically for real estate professionals which delivers powerful strategies and solutions every month to connect with your sphere, find cash buyers, work with investors, saturate your geographic farm, automate your just listed or just sold postcards, and even gives you some fun ways to stand out and be noticed in your market area.
  2. Brochures, Flyers and Free Reports — We know how important having the right collateral at the right
    time is when you’re prospecting, presenting and closing.  These tools lend authority, put stats at your fingertips, spotlight you as the resource, and give additional credibility.
  3. Postcards — We literally have hundreds and hundreds of postcard templates on our site that cover the gamut with over 22 niche marketing categories to choose from.holiday-cards-16
  4. Newsletters — Done for you newsletters which make a perfect ‘touch’ point for your sphere of influence.  You can
    customize however you want, or just run with as is.  All the copy is ready, timely and perfect for delivering relevant content to your customers.
  5. Market Dominator — Our powerful new system for capturing a 20% market share in a geographic area within a two-year time frame.  There’s nothing like it on the market!
  6. Business Cards — From cool new QR Code cards to branded cards — we have a wide selection at a great price to make sure you have what you need.
  7. Door Hangers — These are perfect for your geographic farm or for area FSBOs and Expireds. Easy to
    order and use and priced for any budget!fsbodoor hangers
  8. Data — Our MapMyMail system is amazing for finding the right list of prospects for what you need.  Investors, first time home buyers, move up market candidates — you name it.

That’s just the tip of the iceberg!  Visit our SPECIALS page today (and bookmark it!) — so you can always keep tabs on the latest promo codes, new marketing tools and fresh insights!  We add anywhere from 5-8 new pieces to our site each and every month!

We offer gift cards as well! Thinking about giving the gift of marketing this year or putting it your wish list? See the holiday specials now!

As always, we’re here to help.  Our marketing team is experienced and well versed in what today’s real estate professionals NEED, WANT and will make their lives and jobs EASIER.  If you’re creating your marketing budget for next year and would like some guidance on which tools might work best for you and what that cost would be, call our team today at 866.405.3638 or email us at pmc@prospectsplus.com!

 

Expanding Your Marketing Options and Opportunity

By Julie Escobar

it’s good to have options–right?  Especially when you are building a brand, and growing your business. That’s what our customers tell us every week — and it’s why we continuously work to deliver exceptional options to agents all across North America. One of the features of our site that our customers tell us they love having is the Upload Your Own option.  Why?  It gives those of you who’ve already had branded materials created and just need print resource and those of you who are pretty handy, creative and tech-savvy to create the exact pieces you want for your marketing and STILL have a means to get them printed, shipped and sent to your book of business or to yourself quickly, easily and best of all – AFFORDABLY.

Let’s face it.  Printing up all your materials yourself and getting them the way you want them on your home printer isn’t always a walk in the park.  And I can’t tell you how many times I’ve hit crunch time only to find my printer is (NATURALLY) out of INK.  And for agents who like to have their marketing materials on-hand presentation foldersand professionally printed and looking sharp – this really is the best of both worlds.

What are agents printing using the UPLOAD YOUR OWN option on our new site?

  • Pre-listing packages:  (This is a great one because all that collated and matching everything up is a pain for most agents!  And now we have really cool, branded presentation folders as well that they can just tuck each one into!)
  • Feature Property or Open House flyers:  This is especially handy if you’re using an InfoBox and need to print a lot of them at a low cost so you can keep replenishing your supply.
  • Pre-designed and branded marketing pieces:  Many of you have spent considerable time, effort and flyersenergy to create branded personal brochures, notecards and stationery – but just need a reasonable source to get them printed that you can rely on for short-run ability, good pricing and reliability.
  • Large files:  No burning up your ink jet with large files that need printing – we’ve got it! (For Less!)
  • Brochures:  Having the right brochures on hand for open houses, presentations, leave-behinds at local businesses and more is vital to your business.
  • Invitations:  Invites to community events, fundraisers, client appreciation parties or real estate workshops are easy and fast to reproduce.
  • Posters, Postcards and Print Outs – Oh my! Anything you need printing – we can find a way to
    Spaccommodate.  From the postcards or printouts that you design yourself to the event pieces you might need for your sphere, farm or community.
  • Magnets: Many agents like to print out sports event calendars, regular calendars, recipes, top marketing tips with a magnetic back (way to STICK around for your sphere.) By the way – our Football Schedule Series is a super popular marketing tool. See them here. It’s easy!

There are so many options you can now choose and we’re thrilled to bring them to you.  Whether you would like ready-made marketing tools such as our free reports, postcards, stationery, niche kits, presentation folders or if you prefer to create your own and just choose to print it offsite – we hope you’ll discover how simple, affordable and service-focused we are to work with.

Make sure your artwork is sized to fit our printing requirements by visiting our Artwork Specifications Link here.

And if you are NOT a do-it-yourself kind of guy or gal — head over to our Specials Page and see what agents across the nation are sending this month!

Got questions?  Call us today at 866.405.3638 to get the help you need printing the marketing pieces you want to help you grow your business and get those phones ringing!

Putting all the Pieces in Placepp puzzle

by Julie Escobar

Sometimes it’s easy to get overwhelmed as a busy agent. You’ve got LOTS of plates spinning and you can get stretched a little thin trying to be ‘all things to all people’.  The thing is, that all things strategy is a recipe for burn out and stress.  Instead focus on the RIGHT people for you.  Who do you ENJOY working with?  Who do you WANT to connect with month after month?  Then put the tools, marketing, strategies and plan in place to work with more of THOSE folks, and less of the ‘everyone’ you may have been chasing.

Why?  Well, first of all we’re better when we are in our own element. Working with the kind of people we are in sync with.  Second of all, just like anything else – the more you work with specific niches, the more skill you have at knowing everything that might come your way with those buyers and sellers and exactly how to deal with those.

Here’s what’s also cool:  We can help.  Our marketing tools are created by real estate professionals for real estate professionals. We’ve been in your shoes. We keep our eyes and ears on the market and deliver what you need accordingly.  Many of our customers say that brings a sense of relief to them as they know right where they can get what they need, at a price they can afford.

Here are a few examples: 

Luxury Home Marketing:  Love to work with high-end sellers and fabulous, luxury properties?  Who could blame you?  Having beautiful high-end property portfolios that are simple to create and cost-effective is simpler than you might think.  We’ve done it all for you with coordinating materials.  Check them out here…

FSBOs and Expireds:  These turn-to niches are a staple for most real estate pros, especially when they are eager to ramp up their listing inventory.  We’ve developed entire kits to help you market them effectively and affordably complete with postcards, free reports, and brochures.  Pick which one works best for you!  You’ll find them here – FSBOs & Expireds. Remember, the key is at least three-five contacts with these potential sellers and follow up with phone calls!

First time home buyers:  This is a great niche for a lot of agents, especially newer agents. Sometimes first time buyers seem a little less intimidating!  With interest rates low and home prices on the rise – now is the time for renters to invest!  Here are some great postcards to get you started.

Geographic farm or neighborhood niche:  We recommend all agents stick close to a sphere of influence AND market to a geographic farm.  Two of our most popular marketing tools for this is our Neighborhood Update/Free Offer Series of postcards, and our Market Dominator. Over time, with consistency, you can ‘own’ those neighborhoods in terms of loyalty and market share.

Matching your marketing to your market is one of the smartest things you can do to ensure the success you desire.  When your marketing speaks to the demographic specifically, you have a better chance of finding the hand-raisers who will pick up the phone.

Here are a few other niches you might try on for size:  Seniors, Investors, Short Sales, Foreclosures & REOs, and Property Management.

Whatever your target market is, we’re here to help.  Be sure to bookmark our Specials Page for money-saving promo codes and call us if you need assistance at 1.866.405.3638! 

It Pays to Be Preparedexpireds

By Julie Escobar

Expireds have long had a relatively rotten reputation.  Dubbed ‘difficult’, ‘tough nuts’, or ‘stubborn’ by many agents – but for others – they are considered great ‘low hanging fruit’ and for expired aficionados —  they are the #1 source for increased productivity, respectable listing inventory and even long-term referral clients.  In fact, as many agents will tell you – directly after the holiday season will be the BEST time to swoop in and dominate the expireds in your market.

Here’s what you need to know first:

I believe most experts (and expired specialists) would tell you that success lies in three things:  ATTITUDE, APPROACH and SALESMANSHIP. 

ATTITUDE first, because often expireds are a little discouraged, beat up and even a little put off because they’ve been disappointed in the past.  But a strong agent with a great disposition and a handle on how to get the job done can almost always turn that around.

APPROACH without being pushy, overbearing or blameful.  We’ve always found direct response postcards a great way to capture the attention of a prospect by using questions and statements that are ALREADY in the mind of your target consumer and that lead them to look to YOU for the solutions.  And it’s an APPROACH that has worked tremendously for thousands of agents because it 1) warms the call, 2) presents you as the expired specialist and 3) offers an item of value that is intriguing and helpful to your potential customer.  (Now there’s a win-win-win!)

SALESMANSHIP is often a combo platter of things-right?  It includes the right attitude and approach of course, but also combines savvy dialogue skills, the ability to empathize with your customers and steer them in the right direction.  I’ve always found that it is also the ability to use VISUALS to help tie down your points, make your message crystal clear and lend authority to what you’re saying.  And when you are dealing with more than one seller—more often than not, one is a VISUAL person and one is more focused on the words and the details – so if you have BOTH going for you, you stand a better chance of closing for the signature!

A success strategy that many agents are using today is fairly simple and extremely effective:  

  1. Every morning (or at least once a week) pull the list of expireds from your MLS.  Put these names, addresses and contact information into your prospect database. (HINT:  Pay special attention to the first week of the new year – that’s a goldmine of expireds, so don’t wait to be prepared!)
  2. Set up a series of 3, 6 or 9 direct response offer postcards to go out to those expireds over the course of the next two weeks.  (Sending the postcards 2-3 days apart.)
  3. Follow up with a phone call, introduce yourself as an expert in expired listings and offer an item of value in return for a chance to come out and see the property and make some recommendations for getting the job done.  (If at first you don’t succeed – keep trying!)  Close for the appointment.
  4. Bring their collateral pieces with them to the listing appointment, and begin to build that relationship with them with the right ATTITUDE, APPROACH and SALESMANSHIP.

Sometimes (all right – a LOT of the times) pricing is a factor for expireds- so be sure you have some great objection handlers in your arsenal to ensure that you are pricing that listing RIGHT so you can help your clients reach a better conclusion than their LAST listing experience.

We went ahead and did all the leg work for you – We’ve put together three different expired listing packages for agents to make your job of getting in the door and walking away with the listing a whole lot easier.  Choose from our Silver, Gold or Platinum Packages which include direct response postcards, powerful brochures and the free reports that are just what the sellers are looking for!

Both the Silver and Platinum Kit have our Merchandising Review included.  Here is a little pricing dialogue you can use with that piece to get Expireds to come to the table with the right price. 

As soon as a property comes up on the MLS expired list, you should contact them by telephone and attempt to use the Merchandising Review as a reason for them to set an appointment to talk with you.  Here’s the dialogue we suggest for a phone call:

Hello, Mr./Mrs./Ms/Miss ____________, my name is _______, and I’m with ______.  The reason I’m calling is to see whether or not you still want to sell your home.  Do you?

O.K., well, I know you must be disappointed that it didn’t sell the first time, and I think I have something that will ensure that situation won’t ever happen to you again.  It’s called a Merchandising Review form…have you heard of it before?

Basically this is a special tool I use to make a comprehensive analysis of why your home didn’t sell, and what needs to be done differently to guarantee that it will sell if you do decide to put it back on the market.

What I’d like to do is set a time when we could sit down together and go over the Merchandising Review.  It takes about 20-25 minutes, and there’s absolutely no cost for this service.

Would Wednesday at 6:15 be good, or Thursday around 8:30 be better for you?

Now walk them through each item and negotiate the issues that were keeping the property from selling.  Correct these issues, and then show them your marketing plan.

Here’s just some of the pieces that are included:

expired listing package

 

 

 

 

 

 

Get yours today here or learn more by calling us at 866.405.3638.

Setting the Stage for Successcommission objection handling brochure

By Julie Escobar

After last week’s email regarding our objection handling brochures we were flooded with calls.  So we thought we’d share a little dialogue for you to use WITH the brochures so you can handle objections with EASE the next time you’re up against some tough sellers.

Let’s start with the Commission Brochures.  Things are heating up out there and competition is getting pretty intense.  What we know is that nothing lasts—not the good times or the bad times.  But one thing that ALWAYS seems to rear its nasty little head during the GOOD times is that the discount commission agents start coming out of the woodwork.  And that means it’s time for savvy agents to get down to business and know how to handle objections well before a seller even has the chance to utter the question, “Will you cut your commission?”

To help you head that objection off at the pass, I sat down with ProspectsPLUS.com Company President Jim Morton to get some 5-Star dialogue for handling that oh so common objection!

The truth is that listings are (and always have been) the name of the game.  So, what are you seeing RIGHT NOW?  Agents want LISTINGS.  Why?  Because they’re SELLING. What HAVEN’T you seen in recent years?  You haven’t seen a lot of discount brokerages, or sell-it-on-your-own type companies. But they’re back – and they’re back big. And FSBOs are getting a little cockier as well.  So be PREPARED.    You’re going to get hit with objections.

The best thing to do in this market?  Is to get prepared.  Know that there are really only a few common objections when you get down to it.  And you’ll probably be hit with quite a few in the next year or so.  See if any of these sound familiar?

  • “The other broker said they would list it for less commission.”
  • “I want to try to sell it myself to save the commission.”
  • “I have a friend in the business and they said they’d take less commission.”

When you are hit with one of these – or any objection, remember this.  The way to change another human being’s feelings is VISUALLY.  A few well-chosen words with a correct visual will always take you further than the words alone.  So having five or six commission handling brochures in your briefcase at all times.  That does a couple of things for you.  First, it lets the sellers know that you are prepared, and you’ve handled this before.  Secondly, it will give you a track to run on.  There’s six reasons why another agent might take less – and how that can be COSTING that seller money.  Your job as the professional is to visually show them these six reasons with a few well-chosen words and have the ability to handle that objection without stress.

How do we get started?  First go to the website, download a pdf of the commission handling brochure, fold them up and keep them in your briefcase as part of your presentation tools.  If you’re using an iPad or notebook for your presentation you can display the pdf on that as well. Or we can print for you and ship a stack to your home so you always have them handy.

Next, use the five-step objection handling process:

  1. Agree with them.
  2. Ask them open-ended questions.  (They usually start with:  Who, What, Where, When, Why, and How).
  3. Isolate the objection with a sharp-angle close.  “Well what if you knew ______________, would you _______?”
  4. Show them something.
  5. Use an assumptive close.

Here’s a little dialogue: 

Mr. and Mrs. Seller, you know if there is a way to save money — I don’t blame you.  I’m always looking for ways to save money as well.  In today’s world it just makes sense-right?  And you know if in fact you could save money going with that other broker, I’d recommend that – but I guess let me ask you this:  What’s more important to YOU?  Is it paying a lower commission or is putting the most money in your pocket?

Oh, OK, so it’s putting more money in your pocket?  Is there anything else?  Any other reason you would want to go with someone else other than the commission?  — Ok – so just the commission.

Well let me ask you this – what if you knew that by going with that other agent you wouldn’t be saving a dime?  As a matter of fact, you might be costing yourself five or six thousands of dollars out of pocket, would you still go with them?  I guess, here’s what I mean.  What if you knew that by paying a lower commission that you’d put less money in your pocket when it’s all said and done.  Would paying a lower commission still be important to you? What’s more important? Paying a lower commission or putting more money in your pocket?

What if I could show you beyond a shadow of a doubt, that sure, I may charge a little more, but if I could put more money in your pocket would you go ahead and put it on the market with me? If putting more money in your pocket is really what’s most important, you’d almost insist right?  Well let me show you some things that will save you a lot of time and aggravation – and even a lot of money.  Would that be OK?  There are six reasons that a broker or agent will charge less commission.  Let’s go through them – let’s start with what could be the most important one — reducing their commission…

The truth is — a 1% reduction of commission results in 20% of their income.  Let me ask you 6 pitfallssomething – if your agent is so good at letting you negotiate a 20% reduction of their livelihood – how well will they do at protecting your interest with a buyer who wants to reduce the price of your house?”

The commission handling brochure has six great reasons why the OTHER agent is willing to reduce their commission – and frankly – why they SHOULD.  It’s a powerful tool to have in your toolbox when facing pricing objections in what is sure to be a busy and competitive market ahead.timing is everything

You’ll also want to take a look at the 6 Pitfalls of Overpricing – which is perfect for those pie-in-the-sky sellers who want every dime back for the ‘expensive paint’ and other personal ‘upgrades’ to their home. It covers the six top missteps that happen when overpricing a home.

And the Timing is Everything, and Think it Over Brochures are great as well for sellers who are sitting on the fence. They spotlight what a seller can lose by waiting.  Check them out today! Use the 5 step objection handling process with these objections as well!

Hope the dialogues helped!  Get your copy of the commission handling brochure today by clicking here.  Need help with your marketing needs as we speed into the new season?  Call us today at 866.405.3638!  That’s what we do best!   Google