For a lot of agents looking to make the most of what’s left of the year, getting the RIGHT coaching advice and strategies to create the RIGHT action plan for success can truly be the difference between making and breaking goals. To get some words of wisdom, I reached out to Real Estate Champions Coach Dirk Zeller to learn what he’s sharing with agents that has got their production and profitability up, and their minds aligned with what they need to do to finish the year strong.
Here’s what we learned…
Q: What agents do now is vital to how they finish the year – and even head into the New Year. What’s your best top tip for agents eager to finish the second half of the year strong?
A: Do I have to give just one? Because we have so many moving pieces to the real estate market, to the inventory increasing in many markets. The Fed slowing down and ending the bond buying which will raise interest rates, with more than 41 million internet based leads being created this year up from about 15 million last year. The agents have a lot more to focus on in this last few months. Let me share a couple quickly that will create a vast difference.
1) We are in a 90 day sprint. Agents have less than 90 days left to the production year. The real estate year really ends November 30th. Which means– you have less time than you think.
2) Call all leads and ask all new leads, “Is your goal to be in by the holiday season?” This will do more to determine timing, urgency, and whether this is a now prospect or a future customer. Then, walk the fine line forward to build urgency. “Wow, if you want to be in by Christmas, we need to have you closed on a home by December 15. It usually takes 45 days to comfortably close a transaction, so we need to be in negotiations with a seller no later than November 1st. Based on our inventory it likely will take 45 days to search and find the right home. That means we need to be actively looking and view homes no later than September 15th. Wow, that’s days away. Let’s book an appointment to meet.” I call this the Holiday close.
3) Whether you make your goal for the year is not will be based on quality of the prospects you are investing your time in. You have too little time left to make a mistake in investing time into someone that isn’t going to take action, meaning buy or seller. Your cushion is now gone. You can mess up in February but you can’t mess up in September. There isn’t enough time to overcome.
Q: What do you think has been the biggest change this year in our business and how can agents get in front of that to position themselves to better compete?
A: The biggest challenge I see is selling value to a consumer that is more emboldened, more ‘do it yourself’. They are searching online more with more frequency and limited loyalty. Based on the NAR numbers of more than 90%+ people using the internet to search for a home, with more than 80% searching frequently, almost all leads are now internet leads first. Your best past clients and sphere are going to the internet before they even call you to say I am thinking about selling. They get caught in Zillow, Trulia, Realtor.com or another agent who has good web presence or pay-per-click campaign lead generation system. This creates competition, public perception of lack of value, and an “I don’t need an agent I can get all I need online” misconception. How I sell my value has changed because the information and options are out in the open at a higher level. It also makes the need to consistently touch, communicate, transfer value to your past clients, sphere and forum more important than ever because they won’t automatically come back to use your service.
Q: There are a lot of agents who are still really fearful to pick up the phone and connect with their sphere – any dialogues you can share that will help them break the ice?
A: The apprehension comes from the lack of contact in the past. We have some months or years without personal contact, meaning a call. It also comes from the lack of value we just talked about. If I have no value “what’s” the purpose for the call? Let me share two thoughts. First, if it’s been awhile, call up and have a conversation. You are calling because you were thinking of them and are wondering how they are doing. Don’t ask for referrals on the call. This is where agents get stuck. They know they should ask for referrals, but they haven’t talked with this person in 3 years. They know it’s not authentic to call once in 3 years and then at the end say “oh, so by the way…blah, blah, blah”. Position your value to them. Craft a 30 second script on what’s happening in the marketplace, share with them economic indicators and how that effects real estate. Express to them that its clear interest rates will be climbing in 6 months. Have they looked into locking in the lowest possible rate to have their money if this home is a longer term house for them? The key today is value, value, value!
A: Julie, you said the key word to success…CONSISTENT. Whether you are trying to lose weight, increase your business, or create wealth, the secret sauce is consistency. Most people are not consistent enough to let the law of averages create the win for them. They need help in being consistent and that is true in all areas of their business and life. The law of averages connects with the compounding effect of consistency to create a greater return and a compounded return over time. Let me illustrate in money terms. If you put $3.83 a day away from the time you turned 20 until age 65 and received high single digit interest rate return by age 65 you would be a millionaire. The only hard part is doing it every day for 45 years…the rest is easy. Would you trade a vanilla latte a day for a million bucks? To be consistent in marketing you need someone that can create and send the pieces of marketing that have value to your client base or focus base. You can’t do it alone because as an agent you get busy and it doesn’t get done.
Q: Exactly! That’s why we keep creating new ways for people to connect – so they don’t have to! Any words of wisdom to help agents get on track and stay there?
A: Because consistency in market and in actions is so important, do they have a system, strategy or person to help them? That could be your spouse, significant other, brother, or a colleague, a mentor or coach. If you aren’t consistent it’s likely that won’t miraculously change overnight unless you get some level of help. Some of your audience, Julie, are thinking, “You’re right, Dirk, this is an issue and one I have had for some time”. If you are thinking that, it’s likely you won’t fix this on your own. You have known about it, have tried different alterations to fix it but it’s still an issue. Look for help. If you are saying, “Ok, Dirk, you got me, you’re right”, at least contact us so we can see if there might be a fit for us to provide help and value.
Q: If agents want to learn more about your training systems, where is the best place for them to go?
A: There are a number of ways to reach us. They can go to our website at www.RealEstateChampions.com, Facebook page at www.facebook.com/RealEstateChampions. Probably the best is to call our office at 541-388-8833, or 877-732-4676. One of our Success Consultants can invest a few minutes with you to better diagnose your challenges and help you create some solutions for you and your business.
Awesome stuff, Dirk! Thanks so much for sharing your time and strategies! As always, our team is here to help you as well with powerful tools to help you get and stay connected, positioned, and top of mind in your market CONSISTENTLY. Just reach out to us at 866.405.3638 or visit us online at www.prospectsplus.com. Be sure to visit our Specials Page as well to see what’s new this month and get the latest budget-saving promo codes.