Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Although it depends upon whom you ask, estimates vary about the average length of time a real estate agent stays in their career. Trainer Tom Ferry says that 87 percent wash out within five years and others say that the churn rate is around 95 percent.

If you’re a new agent who hopes to be in it for the long haul or an established one who is facing challenges, read on to understand some of the stumbling blocks you may face and how to overcome them.

Let complacency take hold

When that sense of security settles over you, when you decide that being average is good enough – wake up!

NAR’s member survey claims that fewer than one-fourth of REALTORS® earn more than $100,000 annually. The median earnings, at least according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, is $44,090.

What’s interesting, is how the business behaviors of the lowest and highest earners differ. Rich agents, for instance, aren’t afraid to spend money. And, no, it isn’t because they have more of it to spend. Most claim that they started their careers with the mindset that “it takes money to make money.”

An Active Rain survey of these agents finds that they spend more of their incomes on tech upgrades and 10 times more on marketing than the poorer agents.

 Refuse to spend money

Remember the NAR member survey we mentioned above? Ever wonder what separates the two groups of earners (aside from experience)?

Those who earn more aren’t afraid to spend the money necessary to set them apart from the rest of the agent-pack in their area.

The wealthier agents spend their money on their websites, their CRM, and email marketing. In fact, this group of agents spends 10 times more on marketing than the lower-earning agents.

Keep hanging on to every last nickel and you’ll fail. It’s as simple as that.

Don’t grasp “When you list, you last”

The holy grail in academia is to publish. It’s one of the few ways to promote yourself as an authority and, thus, further a career. In fact, the admonishment is “Publish or Perish.”

We have one of those in real estate: “When you list, you last.” When you consider that your listings will generate far more clients than your buyers will (if you work them properly), you understand the dictum.

Servicing a listing is also a lot less labor-intensive than working with a buyer. Focusing on listings “will allow you to get what you want a lot faster and allow you to have a life,” according to real estate trainer Knolly Williams.

In his book “Millionaire Real Estate Agent,” Gary Keller claims that listings are vital if you hope to build your business to its highest level, “with the lowest costs and highest net.”

Finally, Matt Williams at Realtor.org challenges agents to walk into any real estate broker’s office and ask to meet their most successful agent. The chances are pretty good, he says, that “you’ll soon be shaking the hand of someone whose income comes mostly from listing.”

How much is “mostly?” The experts recommend that 60 percent of your business should be listings.

 Ignore past clients

One of the most amazing real estate statistics to come out of the NAR is that the majority of real estate consumers (85 percent, according to the latest survey) loved their agent so much that they promised to use them again in the future.

Yet, fewer than 25 percent actually do use the same agent

This is a direct result of a failure to follow up on the agent’s part. The most awesome closing gift ever given won’t make these people remember you five years down the line when it’s time to sell their home. Especially if another agent has been farming them or otherwise getting their name in front of them more often than you do yours.

Inconsistent or non-existent follow-up is like throwing money away and a surefire way to sabotage your business.

Consider this: a 5 percent increase in your client retention rate can bump your income as much as 95 percent, according to research by Harvard Business School.

Don’t neglect others in your sphere of influence, either. According to NAR, as much as 65 percent of your business can come from that pool if you consistently reach out to them.

Don’t worry about how to keep in touch. Put these people on a drip campaign and send out postcards, newsletters, market updates, free reports and anything else that will keep you top-of-mind.

Fail to plan for success

It’s difficult to remain focused on your goals if you lack a plan. Guessing or hoping that you meet your objectives isn’t smart. An assumption of where you stand at any given moment is about as accurate as a Zestimate of a property’s value.

Avoid the hit-or-miss chaos and make a business plan. Yes, it’s boring and yes, it’s time-consuming. There are lots of guides online to help you, but we’re rather partial to the ProspectsPLUS! Real Estate Business Plan.

Don’t accept being an average agent, spend the money it takes to market your business, chase listings instead of buyers, send past clients lots of love, and create and follow a business plan.

THAT is how to ensure your success and tenure in real estate.

Need help targeting the perfect niche of buyers or sellers? Use our mailing list tool to create the ideal list or call our support team for assistance at 866.405.3638!

Start going after those listings today!
Send the Take Advantage of the Market postcard from the Listing Inventory Series to at least 100 prospects in an area where you want more listings.

Need help targeting the perfect niche of buyers or sellers? Use our mailing list tool to create the ideal list (it’s easy) or call our support team for assistance at 866.405.3638!

PLUS: When you have time…here are 3 free ways we can help you CRUSH IT in 2018!

1.  The 12 Month Done-For-You Strategic Marketing Plan.

The Real Estate Marketing Planner is a powerful 12-Month-Guide that strategically defines what marketing to do when. Four key market segments are included, Niche Marketing, Listing Inventory, Geographic Farming, and Sphere of Influence – Click Here  – Click Here

2. The Free 2018 Real Estate Business Plan.

Treat your business like a business it is vital to long-term success in this industry. Some agents may put together elaborate business plans, yet there’s something powerful about keeping it simple. Check out our one page Online Real Estate Business Plan  – Click Here

3. The Free Online ROI Calculator. 

Consistency and automation are the keys to success. Discover how effective direct mail marketing can dramatically increase your bottom line. Enter your statistics in our Free online ROI Calculator and click the ‘CALCULATE MY ROI’ button to see your results instantly! – Click Here

Also…check out these cool tools 🙂

 Three Click Postcards – Just snap a home photo & create a postcard all from your mobile phone

MLSmailings.com – Automated Just Listed, Just Sold Postcards

Market Dominator System – Become a neighborhood brand

Want to Refer a friend or colleague? Refer them, Here. THEY get a Free $25 Gift Card and YOU become their hero!

Keep Buyers Interested

The importance of video within the real estate industry applies more to listing agents than buyers’ agents, at least according to a six-year-old study. Results of the study found that 73 percent of homeowners want a listing agent who uses video to market homes.

Avoid the top 3 mistakes

Despite knowing that videos may not be popular with all homebuyers, offering them to your listing clients is mandatory. As mentioned above, most want a video of their home and they expect it. Not giving your listing clients what they want is a big mistake.

As long as you are committed to creating a video, why not create one without the mistakes, so often seen online:

  • Overly-dark videos
  • Camera shake
  • Amateur/homemade look

The following are the three most common listing video mistakes and how to correct them.

Mistake 1- Penny-pinching

The old saying that “you get what you pay for” might not have been coined by a real estate agent who pinched pennies and obtained poor quality work, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it was.

Videographers do charge money for their services, but they may not be as expensive as you think. In fact, we did an informal, non-scientific, cursory web search for prices and find professionals offering their services for as little as $200.

There are some photographers who offer packages which include a video walkthrough of the home. For instance, one Phoenix, Arizona photographer charges a reasonable $400 for a package that includes 25 photos, HD walkthrough video, twilight photos and a virtual tour.

Remember, your listing videos will most likely become examples in the marketing plan you show potential listing clients. Will they be examples of how you cut corners or will they show home sellers that you will pull out all the stops to sell their homes?

Mistake 2 — Not ensuring your videos do double duty

Sure, the purpose of the video is to market your listing, but videos do double duty, according to Forrester Research. Videos are 50 times more likely to show up on the first page of Google search results than text pages, if they’re optimized, according to research.

Why not leverage the power of YouTube to benefit your business while also promoting your client’s listing?

The Fix:

Mashable’s Nate Elliot suggests doing the following:

  • Use your keywords in the video’s title, tags and description when you upload it to YouTube.
  • After uploading the video to YouTube, embed it on your website. According to Elliot, Google considers “how many times a video is viewed, and any views embedded videos receive on your own site get added to the ‘views’ tally on YouTube.”
  • Create a video sitemap.
Mistake 3 – Too long, didn’t watch

When something becomes such a common, annoying practice that an acronym is created (tl;dw) stands for “too long, didn’t watch”, you know it’s best to avoid the practice.

Americans are busy. We also tend to have the attention span of a kitten – and are as easily distracted. YouTube says that visitors typically watch for 3.5 minutes.

The National Center for Biotechnology Information, on the other hand, claims that the average amount of time spent on a single video is 2 minutes and 42 seconds.

And, if you don’t get their attention in the first 10 seconds, kiss them goodbye.

In fact, research shows that you’ll lose 30 percent of viewers within the first 30 seconds of your video and, when it reaches the one-minute mark, another 45 percent will leave.

So, plan on putting the most important stuff up front and keep the entire video as short as possible.

Nearly 90 percent of the homebuyers surveyed by NAR found “photos very useful,” while only half of them said the same for real estate videos. Don’t make the common mistakes of other agents that result in unwatchable videos.

Follow the above guidelines to produce listing videos that enhance your marketing and sales efforts and keep your clients smiling.

Another way to capture the attention of home buyers is to send Property Showcase Just Listed postcards to the area surrounding your new listing.

Need help targeting the perfect niche of buyers or sellers? Use our mailing list tool to create the ideal list or call our support team for assistance at 866.405.3638!

PLUS: When you have time…here are 3 free ways we can help you CRUSH IT in 2018!

1. The Free 2018 Real Estate Business Plan.

Treat your business like a business it is vital to long-term success in this industry. Some agents may put together elaborate business plans, yet there’s something powerful about keeping it simple. Check out our one page Online Real Estate Business Plan  – Click Here

2. The Free Online ROI Calculator. 

Consistency and automation are the keys to success. Discover how effective direct mail marketing can dramatically increase your bottom line. Enter your statistics in our Free online ROI Calculator and click the ‘CALCULATE MY ROI’ button to see your results instantly! – Click Here

3. The 12 Month Done-For-You Strategic Marketing Plan.

The Real Estate Marketing Planner is a powerful 12-Month-Guide that strategically defines what marketing to do when. Four key market segments are included, Niche Marketing, Listing Inventory, Geographic Farming, and Sphere of Influence – Click Here  – Click Here

Also…check out these cool tools 🙂

 Three Click Postcards – Just snap a home photo & create a postcard all from your mobile phone

MLSmailings.com – Automated Just Listed, Just Sold Postcards

Market Dominator System – Become a neighborhood brand

Want to Refer a friend or colleague? Refer them, Here. THEY get a Free $25 Gift Card and YOU become their hero!

Convert More Leads to Listings

If your blog isn’t performing in a way that is resulting in new potential listing traffic, it may be time for a tune-up.

Yes, we get that you’re busy, but this process is painless and can be done in pieces so you won’t have to take an entire day or evening to get it done.

Best of all, these tips will help improve your site’s visibility, your visitor’s experience and you won’t have to hire a web developer.

Fix broken links

Broken links on your blog return 404 errors to your users. They become frustrated and click away. As a result, you’ve lost them and probably for good. Broken links also impact your search engine ranking.

In essence, broken links are broken promises, so the first step in the blog tune-up is to check for and fix them.

There are several easy and free ways to do this:

  • WordPress site? Install “Broken Link Checker”. You can find a walk-through of the process (it’s quite easy) at Org.
  • Check My Links – a Chrome browser extension that checks all the links on a page. Find it in the Chrome Webstore.
  • Xenu Web Sleuth – it’s a rather odd-looking website, and you’ll need to download the software, but according to many, it’s one of the best, free ways to check for dead links.

Remove any dead links that can’t be replaced and update those that can.

While you’re in “link” mode

How is your internal linking structure? Linking from one blog post to another on your site keeps your reader engaged longer on your blog. In addition, search engine spiders love internal links.

Go through some of your most popular blog posts and find opportunities to link to other posts on your site.

Add some bling

Blog posts with compelling images are read more often than those that offer poor images. Therefore, check your blog post images and replace any that may be doing more harm than good.

Try using Canva.com to create overlays on your photos to give them that Pinterest look. It’s free and, once you get the hang of it, quite easy to use.

You can find free images online at:

  • Pixabay
  • Pexels
  • Morgue File
  • New Old Stock (vintage photos)
  • SkitterPhoto (click on “Browse Free Photos)
  • Unsplash

Fix blog format problems

The name of the game when writing a blog post is “white space.” Don’t torture your visitor with great, big blocks of text. Break it up with short paragraphs, the use of images, quotes, subheadings and bulleted lists.

Throw out everything you learned in English composition. You aren’t writing for a teacher, you’re writing for someone who typically scans text online. If it appears on the first scan to be too much of a chore to read, they’ll leave.

A good rule of thumb is to break up any paragraph that exceeds five sentences in length.

How’s your call to action?

If you hope to convert your blog visitors to leads, you’ll need effective “calls to action”. Any money and effort you expend to drive traffic to your blog is wasted if your posts lack this critical component.

Your call to action must consist of the following:

  • Make it unique
  • Use enticing offers
  • It must be prominent
Check your post titles

We get it, you’re not a copywriter. That doesn’t mean, however, that you should neglect the most important component of each post, the title.

A compelling, descriptive headline can mean the difference between the reader leaving or staying. It also impacts whether they click on the post’s link when you share it on social media.

Look at each headline and ask yourself if you would be compelled to read on if it weren’t your blog. If not, fix the ones that don’t work.

Magazine covers are ideal places to look for ideas on how to write catchy blog titles.

Order at least 100 of the Free Report, “5 Reasons Why Your House May Not Sell”, and use them as an opt-in on your blog site.
Also, for extra lift add them as a “call to action” on all of your marketing pieces.

Need help targeting the perfect niche of buyers or sellers? Use our mailing list tool to create the ideal list or call our support team for assistance at 866.405.3638!

PLUS: When you have time…here are 3 free ways we can help you CRUSH IT in 2018!

1. The Free 2018 Real Estate Business Plan.

Treat your business like a business it is vital to long-term success in this industry. Some agents may put together elaborate business plans, yet there’s something powerful about keeping it simple. Check out our one page Online Real Estate Business Plan  – Click Here

2. The Free Online ROI Calculator. 

Consistency and automation are the keys to success. Discover how effective direct mail marketing can dramatically increase your bottom line. Enter your statistics in our Free online ROI Calculator and click the ‘CALCULATE MY ROI’ button to see your results instantly! – Click Here

3. The 12 Month Done-For-You Strategic Marketing Plan.

The Real Estate Marketing Planner is a powerful 12-Month-Guide that strategically defines what marketing to do when. Four key market segments are included, Niche Marketing, Listing Inventory, Geographic Farming, and Sphere of Influence – Click Here  – Click Here

Also…check out these cool tools 🙂

 Three Click Postcards – Just snap a home photo & create a postcard all from your mobile phone

MLSmailings.com – Automated Just Listed, Just Sold Postcards

Market Dominator System – Become a neighborhood brand

Want to Refer a friend or colleague? Refer them Here. THEY get a Free $25 Gift Card and YOU become their hero!

Our Three Contest Winners From June are Revealed Below!

Thank you, everyone, for the incredible reviews we received in June! We really appreciate the time you have taken to give us your feedback.

Remember, if your name isn’t announced in this month’s contest, a new contest starts in July with new opportunities to win!

Our First Winner of the $100 ProspectsPLUS! Gift Card is  – McKee Smith

McKee shares his experience using ProspectsPLUS! with the following feedback.

“I’m a relatively new agent and have sent two mailings with ProspectsPLUS!”

“The service was great – they even called me when there was a minor question combining two mailing lists. I will use them again!”

McKee’s Latest Marketing Purchases – Fencesitter Series, Upload Your Own Design, Expired Series

Our Second Winner of Our $100 ProspectsPLUS! Gift Card is – Catherine Stevens

Catherine shares her experience using ProspectsPLUS! with the following feedback.

“I have had great results when farming with ProspectsPLUS! postcards.”

“Once set up, it’s really easy to continue the farming. So excited to have found this!”

 

Catherine’s Latest Marketing Purchases – Just Sold Postcard Series

Our Third Winner of Our $100 ProspectsPLUS! Gift Card is – Ruth Pancoast

Ruth shares her experience using ProspectsPLUS! with the following feedback.

“I have always been very happy with the products from ProspectsPLUS!”

“I will continue to use them for my mailings.

                 
Ruth’s Latest Marketing Purchases – Doorhangers, Real Estate Newsletter, Neighborhood Specialist


Take the lead from McKee, Catherine and Ruth and send at least 100 listing generating Postcards to an area where you want more listings.

Need help targeting the perfect niche of buyers or sellers? Use our mailing list tool to create the ideal list or call our support team for assistance at 866.405.3638!

Dean Jackson takes your game up another notch by disclosing the steps to becoming a “Market-Maker”.  Learn how to differentiate yourself, become the wise insider, and disrupt your market.  Dean Jackson is the founder of GoGoAgent and Listing Agent Lifestyle

Reverse your thinking

On a fundamental level, the real estate business consists of finding one person who wants to buy a home and finding one person who wants to sell a home and matching those people up.

Most agents begin focusing on finding a buyer after they get a new listing. In fact, often agents are only focused on getting listings because their belief is they need these listings to be able to find buyers.

But what if you reversed this thinking? What if instead of matching buyers and sellers, listing by listing, you become a Market-Maker who’s truly controlling your market?

Bring what the seller REALLY wants

How powerful would it be to show up at a competitive listing appointment with a buyer who already wants to buy the house or a list of people who are interested in a house like their home?

There is nothing more powerful than this position because you’ve got the very thing that the seller wants more than anything.

Even if you brought this buyer to an appointment where the seller was thinking of listing with their mother, if all they had to do was sign with you and their house was sold, mom would be out.

Yeap, they would sell their mother out in a second because self-interest always wins, and their self-interest is to find a buyer.

That’s an extreme example but I guarantee you if you line up the four best listing presentations in your marketplace to compete against and you arrive with a buyer who says, “How much would you like for the house?” and “I’ll take it,” nobody’s getting that listing but you.

When you see listing appointments from this perspective, it makes the most sense to focus on already having buyers whenever possible. It will always give you an advantage on the listings.

A case study

As an internal case study, I spent some time running my “Getting Listings Program” with the intent of find lakefront home sellers in Winter Haven (where I live). At the same time, I marketed home and land ads for buyers looking for lakefront homes.

It wasn’t too long before I received responses from interested parties.

One of those responses was a phone call from someone who’d seen my marketing about the “new lakefront homes that were coming onto the market”. He told me he sold his house in Stuart and was looking for a lakefront home in Winter Haven.

Then literally within an hour of getting that call, I received an email from a home seller on Lake Ruby. She stated, “I’ve been getting your marketing pieces for the last few months and we’re ready to sell our house.” This house actually was a perfect fit for my buyer from Stuart. It was such a perfect coincidence I couldn’t have scripted it better.

Become the insider

The results of my case study really solidified my understanding that the very best thing you can have in a competitive listing arena is a buyer or access to buyers. While everyone else is talking to sellers about, “Once I list your house we’re going to do this and this, and this to find a buyer”, you are going to set your self apart.

Your talk track will be, “I started looking for the buyer for your house 180 days ago by doing this, and this, and this, and right now I have a pool of these buyers who are looking for homes just like yours”.

To be able to match buyers and sellers up in this way, triangulating them, that’s where true “Market-Making” lies. Now, you’ve got insider information and access to people who are thinking about buying a home, and you’ve got insider information on people who are thinking about selling their home.

All that is left is to match these people up. And that’s where you’re adding value and differentiating yourself because no one else will be attacking a market in this innovative and far-reaching way.

To learn more about the other incredible tools and resources Dean has available for agents go to GoGoAgent.com  and ListingAgentLifestyle.com.
Start collecting your pool of buyers now by sending the When Moving Makes Sense postcard from the Move-Up Market Series to at least 100 prospective buyers.

Need help targeting the perfect niche of buyers or sellers? Use our mailing list tool to create the ideal list or call our support team for assistance at 866.405.3638!

PLUS: When you have time…here are 3 free ways we can help you CRUSH IT in 2018!

1. The Free 2018 Real Estate Business Plan.

Treat your business like a business it is vital to long-term success in this industry. Some agents may put together elaborate business plans, yet there’s something powerful about keeping it simple. Check out our one page Online Real Estate Business Plan  – Click Here

2. The Free Online ROI Calculator. 

Consistency and automation are the keys to success. Discover how effective direct mail marketing can dramatically increase your bottom line. Enter your statistics in our Free online ROI Calculator and click the ‘CALCULATE MY ROI’ button to see your results instantly! – Click Here

3. The 12 Month Done-For-You Strategic Marketing Plan.

The Real Estate Marketing Planner is a powerful 12-Month-Guide that strategically defines what marketing to do when. Four key market segments are included, Niche Marketing, Listing Inventory, Geographic Farming, and Sphere of Influence – Click Here  – Click Here

Also…check out these cool tools 🙂

 Three Click Postcards – Just snap a home photo & create a postcard all from your mobile phone

MLSmailings.com – Automated Just Listed, Just Sold Postcards

Market Dominator System – Become a neighborhood brand

Want to Refer a friend or colleague? Refer them Here. THEY get a Free $25 Gift Card and YOU become their hero!