Friday, September 20, 2019

    Even folks who aren’t thinking of buying or selling a home in the near future enjoy reading well-written real estate market reports.

    If you aren’t using market reports in your marketing efforts, you’re missing out on a prime opportunity to show your area expertise. However, it’s not enough to slap up an MLS graph and call it a market report.

    If you’ve ever scratched your head over a medical report from a doc, radiologist or other medical professionals, you know how your market report recipients feel when poring over all the stats.

    It’s up to you to put them into a form that’s easily understandable to the layperson. Then, it’s up to you to let them know what it means for them.

    We’ve seen some brilliant market reports but, unfortunately, we’ve also seen some pretty bad ones. Let’s start with what not to do when writing your report.

    1. Don’t assume consumers understand real estate jargon

    “The pending ratio indicates the supply & demand of the market.”

    While this statement might be true, the author (a company that actually creates reports for agents) assumes that the average reader understands what she means by “pending.”

    Pending what? Most consumers don’t understand MLS terminology so each and every report should clearly spell out the meaning behind what you assume are widely-used terms.

    So, rewritten, it might look like this:

    When a seller accepts an offer on a home, the listing agent changes its status in the MLS from “Active” to “Pending,” meaning the home has an offer, but it hasn’t closed yet.

    The Neighborhood Update postcard is available under the Neighborhood Update Series in the Postcard section

    Then go on to explain what the pending ratio means – in clear, easy-to-understand English.

    Then, there’s “absorption rate.” One Las Vegas brokerage offers an email of a menu of local reports, including a “Monthly Absorption Report.” Sounds more like a soil report than what’s going on in the housing market. We don’t imagine they get many requests for that one.

    “Inventory” is another term that’s tossed around as if everyone understands what the agent is talking about.

    Consider appending the use of “inventory,” at least on the first usage, with an explanatory term. “Inventory of available homes” or “Inventory of homes for sale,” will get the meaning across.

    We love Long & Foster’s description in its market reports. While their graph is titled “Inventory,” the accompanying text simply says:

    “Versus last December, the total number of homes available this month was lower by 298 units or 26%.”

    Then, there are all the acronyms so frequently used by agents that may be a complete mystery to your report recipients. Like “DOM” and “Y-o-Y.”

    2. Don’t assume they understand the statistics’ implications

    Many real estate consumers don’t have a clue as to how different aspects of the economy impact the housing market and why the local economy accounts for many of the differences between the local and national market.

    We like the way Mountain Oak Properties in Asheville, North Carolina handles this:

    “Looking deeper into what is driving this steady improvement nationally and locally, you will find that the Asheville area job growth is outperforming the nation and NC.”

    The report then goes into a deeper dive of the statistics presented in the report, what job growth has to do with the real estate market and what the consumer might expect in the future.

    The Free Market Analysis postcard is available in the Free Offer Series under the Postcard section

    We all know that we can’t predict the market’s future performance based on current numbers, and you should explain that. But, as the “local expert,” you can take a stab at it.

    3. Don’t Be Too General With Your Information

    Get as specific as you can. Lucky you if your MLS provides neighborhood-specific statistics. These allow you to go hyper-local.

    Determine your target market and focus your reports accordingly. If you’re trying to achieve more listings, mention the neighborhoods with the highest price appreciation. Do the opposite if you’re hoping to lure buyers.

    4. Don’t Just Offer Stats and Dry Copy

    Once you have your report written, it’s time to get it into an easy-on-the-eyes format. Ideally, you’ll hire a graphic designer and outsource this part of the project. You can find inexpensive designers online at sites such as upwork.com or 99designs.com.

    Prefer to DIY? Consider customizing one of the thousands of templates at Canva.com. It’s an easy-to-use graphics site and most of what you’ll find there is free.

    Sure, you can take that nifty graph from your MLS and paste it into your report, but, again, it’ll be meaningless to the average real estate consumer.

    The name of the game with market reports is “Reader-Friendly.” And, since 65 percent of us are visual learners, this means using lots of colors and big, bold graphics.

    The Comparative Market Analysis postcard is available in the Call to Action Series under the Postcard section

    Brilliant market reports can help set you apart from the lazy agents. Do them right, and you’ll be one more step ahead.

    Start generating interest in your market reports now!
    Send the Free Comparative Market Analysis postcard from our Call to Action Series to at least 100 prospects in your farm or an area where you want more listings.
    You might also like:

    The Biggest Client Complaint and How Not to Be That Agent

    Agent Facebook Success: Rules of Engagement


    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 Free killer tools to help your success this year!

    1. Become a Listing Legend Free eBook 

    Ready to take a vertical leap in your real estate career? If you’re looking for inspiration…and the tools and methods to dominate a market and go to the top in real estate…you’ll find them in this free book. – Click Here

     

     

    2. “Get More Listings” Free Online Webinar

     

    “Get MORE Listings & Begin to Dominate Your Market!” Free online webinar. Learn the 3-7-27 strategy for explosive growth, why 95% of agents have less than 20% market share, and how to become the agent everyone competes against. – 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, Get More Listings, Geographic Farming, and Sphere of Influence. –Click Here

     

     

    4. The Free One-Page 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

     

     

    5. 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

      Think back to when you first got started in real estate. Remember that sinking feeling of knowing that you had no money coming in – and wouldn’t – until you got a deal?

      The suggestion that you should start generating leads by trolling your sphere of influence is of little consolation when one is accustomed to receiving a regular paycheck.

      If you took the advice, however, you now know the value of a network of people who know, like and trust you. And, never is this sphere of influence more appreciated than when it’s time to leave them all behind and start anew.

      Relocating real estate agents experience a double whammy—moving their homes and families as well as their businesses. Only, the latter isn’t as simple as it might be for other business people. As a small business owner, you’re going to be starting from scratch. No family, no friends, no colleagues.

      The Allow Me Please postcard is available in the postcard section under the Agent Introduction Series.

      How will you do it?

      You’ll need to lay some groundwork before the move and then hit that ground running upon your arrival. Other agents have successfully started over, so learn from them.

      The groundwork

      Before you leave your present home, make some warm calls to your present sphere. Ask if they know anyone in your destination city that might be ok with you calling them for some insider tips on the area.

      Then, call and introduce yourself and begin loading up your CRM with these contacts.

      Stalk other agents

      If you have time before the move, get to know the major players in your new town’s real estate universe. Check websites, read Yelp reviews – do whatever it takes to familiarize yourself with the “competition.”

      Pay close attention to their branding, as this is something you’ll need to do once you’re moved. If you’re seeing the same thing with most agents, differentiating yourself will be easy. If not, consider how you’ll make yourself stand out from the everyone else.

      Then, look at the markets these agents are currently serving – find a niche that isn’t being served and claim it as your own. It’s a lot easier to be a big fish in a small pond than to try to be everything to everyone.

      The Call to Action Door Hanger is available under the Door Hanger tab.

      Get your web presence up and running early

      With so many “fingers” in the website-creation pie, it’s not wise to depend on the developer’s estimated completion date, so get started as early as possible.

      Your local internet presence will be imperative to get established.

      Learn all you can about your new city

      With the internet, getting to know an area is ridiculously easy and something you can begin before leaving your current city. Google Earth will even allow you to view the homes, neighborhoods and city hotspots.

      Use Yelp to find out what’s popular with locals and create a Twitter list to stay on top of local events and news. To get a local’s view of the area, stalk the forums at City-Data.

      After all the research, you should have a basic knowledge of the area so that when you land there, you can strike out on your own for a more intimate look.

      And, now that your website’s up and running, take photos while you’re out and about and use them in blog posts about neighborhoods, eateries and city features. You’ll look like a local in no time.

      Meet the folks

      Your goal should be, aside from getting to know the area, building relationships in your new city.

      One quick way to do this is to get involved in a community organization. Choose one that fits your passion and volunteer. Or, join a civic club, such as the Lions Club, Rotary Club or Kiwanis.

      “My experience is to connect, connect, connect! Fill your pipeline. Know your market, focus and play the game daily,” recommends Christina Sanchez Hood, CEO at Silicon Valley HOODS, at Inman.com.

      Get back to the basics

      Starting a new real estate practice as an experienced agent is a lot different than starting as a rookie. Imagine trying to start a business where you not only don’t have a network but don’t know anything about the business as well. So, rely on your experience.

      Which lead gen technique helped fill your pipeline as a rookie? Whether it was door-knocking, cold-calling, using direct mail or even floor time – if it worked then, it’ll work now. And, if it produces even one converted lead, you’ll thank yourself for putting up with the drudgery.

      In fact, Patti Irwin, an agent in the Scottsdale, Arizona area relied on, among other tactics, open houses and floor time to rebuild her business after relocating from Illinois.

      The Community Newsletter is available under the Newsletter tab.

      If all else fails, research buying leads

      Yes, it’s a contentious topic and those on both sides of the issue have valid points. The fact is, if you work them right, many online leads are productive.

      There are a number of companies that sell real estate leads, but it’s important to do some research before embarking on this tactic.

      If you’re a new agent or have just relocated to a new area, start building your base of business today, send 100 Community Newsletters to an area where you want to become the neighborhood brand.

      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 Free killer tools to help your success this year!

      1. Become a Listing Legend Free eBook 

      Ready to take a vertical leap in your real estate career? If you’re looking for inspiration…and the tools and methods to dominate a market and go to the top in real estate…you’ll find them in this free book. – Click Here

       

       

      2. “Get More Listings” Free Online Webinar

       

      “Get MORE Listings & Begin to Dominate Your Market!” Free online webinar. Learn the 3-7-27 strategy for explosive growth, why 95% of agents have less than 20% market share, and how to become the agent everyone competes against. – 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, Get More Listings, Geographic Farming, and Sphere of Influence. –Click Here

       

       

      4. The Free One-Page 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

       

       

      5. 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

        We have two winners!

        A first place $250 Gift Card winner & a second place $100 Gift Card winner!

        1.Congratulations Virginia Enoch on winning our 1st Prize $250 ProspectsPLUS! Gift Card!

        Virginia shared the following feedback with ProspectsPLUS!

        “A recent postcard publishing was so successful that we ordered another 100 postcards.

        We know that our success is rewarded by partnerships with proven vendors such as ProspectsPLUS!. Your products do enable us!

        I constantly see amazing new products and benefits you provide for your customers. What can I say? Well done and thank you”.

        Virginia’s latest marketing pieces she’s using include – The following Free Reports – 9 Ways to Get More Money in Less Time”, 5 Killer Tips to Sell This Summer”, “Don’t Leave Money on The Table”.


        2. Congratulations Chris Ditoro on winning the 2nd Prize $100 ProspectsPLUS! Gift Card

        Chris shared the following feedback with ProspectsPLUS!,

        “Hands down the products that ProspectsPLUS! put out are second to none. I have compared other Just Listed, Just Sold postcards and ProspectsPLUS! blows them out of the water.

        Tons of design options, Free customizable PDF reports and soooo much more. What’s there not to love about their products and services. Highly recommend 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

        I also didn’t mention. I download their PDF reports and include them in my weekly marketing email to my clients. Also I print them out and have them at open houses and when we door knock as a handout or offer in an email. So many ways to use their products”.

        Chris’ latest marketing pieces she’s sent out include – The Free Report, “6 Critical Questions to Ask”, the Get More Listings Series postcard, “I have a Buyer”, and the Just Sold postcard.

        Take the lead from Virgina and Chris and send at least 100 marketing pieces to an area where you want more buyers or sellers!


        You might also like to read:

        How to Harness the 5 Key Traits of ‘Rock Star’ Agents

        Agent Facebook Success: Rules of Engagement

        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!

          If you’ve come to the point in your real estate practice where you can’t handle everything by yourself, congratulations! Your first step, naturally, is to hire an assistant to take on some of your tasks. Your next step should be consider if your real estate business may be ready for a partner.

          A funny thing happens when you get help: you get even busier. Bernice Ross cites those oh-so-famous unnamed “most experts” when she claims that “once you hit 40-50 transactions per year, your production will be capped at that level unless you hire an assistant or someone else to help you manage your business.”

          The First Step: Decide what you want

          When you take on an alliance with another agent, the relationship can be structured however you think best. You can call that person your partner and make joint decisions in the business. Or, you can hire a buyers’ or listing agent.

          The best choice when it comes to achieving a work-life balance, however, is a full-time partner.

          Yes, you’ll end up splitting the income, but if you hire wisely, your partner will be generating additional business. Hire extremely wisely and you’ll most likely end up making what you did before, or maybe more.

          The Timing is Every postcard is available in the postcard section under the Fence-Sitter Series Seller.
          The benefits of partnering

           When was the last time you took a weekend off or even (gasp!) a vacation? “Vacation coverage is a prime benefit to having a partner,” according to real estate trainer Jennifer Allan-Hagedorn.

          “Your first vacation when you truly don’t have to worry about business? You’ll wonder why you didn’t get a partner before,” she says.

          Qualities of the perfect real estate business partner

          Determine your priorities and expectations first. Make a list of tasks that you routinely perform that you never want to do again. For instance, if the thought of holding one more open house on a Sunday afternoon when you’d rather be golfing is nauseating, make a note to find someone who actually enjoys holding homes open.

          While the partner you decide to team up with should have a different skill set and task preferences than you do, your ethics and work habits should be similar.

          If you’re an overachiever, naturally you don’t want to partner with a slacker.

          Florida agent Peggy Gatchet took on a partner when she went from part-time to full-time real estate sales. Her primary goal was to find someone who works as hard as she does.

          “You have to feel like that person is going to meet you toe-to-toe, hour-to-hour, minute-to-minute,” she explains. “If they don’t, there’s going to be some resentment that will build.”

          Qualities to look for in a real estate business partner include:

          • An agent whose production level mirrors yours
          • Someone who likes doing the tasks you find tedious
          • An agent who shares your work ethic
          • A person you trust
          The Time is Running Out postcard is available in the postcard section under the Fencesitter Series.
          Determine the exit strategy before the entrance

          Business partners don’t take vows that are expected to last as long as you both shall live. Someday, the partnership will dissolve and both of you need to recognize this and prepare for it.

          Allan-Hagedorn provides a cautionary tale from her own experience with the ending of a business partnership. “We both felt that we were entitled to the partnership’s client database.”

          So, hammer out an exit strategy and get it in writing. Include every last detail, including how you’ll deal with the folks in your CRM.

          In fact, a formal and legal partnership agreement is ideal, for both of you, according to Kelle Sparta, author of “The Consultative Real Estate Agent – Building Relationships that Create Loyal Clients, Get More Referrals and Increase Your Sales.”

          “A partnership agreement is like a prenuptial agreement,” she explains and suggests that a thorough agreement will formalize both sides’ expectations on basic issues, such as:

          • Which of you will perform which tasks
          • How will you split commissions, BPO fees, and referral fees
          • What happens if one partner becomes incapacitated or dies
          • Agree how you will dissolve the partnership when you both agree it’s no longer working
          • Decide how you’ll divvy up the client and prospect roster
          • Make a decision how you will deal with current listings when the partnership ends
          • How will you divide the physical assets of the partnership (jointly purchased electronics, office equipment, etc.)

          Despite the work involved in forming a partnership, “Having been a solo practitioner and having been part of a team, I really must confess to preferring the latter,” Sparta recalls. “I loved not having to do things alone. I loved having someone I could call and say ‘I’m not going to make it for the appraiser, can you meet him?’”

          The Still on the Fence postcard is available in the postcard section under the Fencesitter Series

          A partnership isn’t for everyone. If you’re tired of your whole life being wrapped up in your business, however, and need relief, it just might be your key to more personal freedom.

          Send the Still on the Fence Postcard from the Fence-Sitter Series to at least 100 new 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 Free killer tools to help your success this year!

          1. Become a Listing Legend Free eBook 

          Ready to take a vertical leap in your real estate career? If you’re looking for inspiration…and the tools and methods to dominate a market and go to the top in real estate…you’ll find them in this free book. – Click Here

           

           

          2. “Get More Listings” Free Online Webinar

           

          “Get MORE Listings & Begin to Dominate Your Market!” Free online webinar. Learn the 3-7-27 strategy for explosive growth, why 95% of agents have less than 20% market share, and how to become the agent everyone competes against. – 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, Get More Listings, Geographic Farming, and Sphere of Influence. –Click Here

           

           

          4. The Free One-Page 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

           

           

          5. 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

            If you’re spending time and money on email marketing, there are “best practices” that you can follow to ensure that your emails are opened, read, enjoyed and that they produce business.

            Let’s walk through the two most critical parts of an email and look at ways to ensure both do their fair share of the heavy lifting.

            1. Your real estate email subject line

            Most marketers we’ve spoken with claim that the subject line of an email is critical – more important than even the substance of the email.

            They have a point. The subject line determines whether the recipient opens or tosses the email.

            Regardless of how interested your recipients are in what you’re selling, they’ll skip over your email unless you entice them not to.

            For instance, since I firmly believe that baby boomers are the wave of real estate’s near future, I’ve joined several boomer website’s email lists.

            One of them uses the same subject line on every email. Identical. Never varies:

            “First Look: Baby Boomers”

            As interested as I am in baby boomer real estate attitudes, I seldom open these emails. I always think I’ll find the time later on but I seldom do.

            Today, I opened one and the first link to a story on their website is “Are You Making This Big Retirement Mistake?”

            Send out the Too Much House postcard (available in the postcard section under Life Event Series)

            What a brilliant title! If I were close to retirement, I would find this topic so compelling I would click on the link.

            Had this been the subject of the email, it would’ve been opened immediately. Think of the website visits this company is missing out on by being so lazy with their email subject lines.

            According to Olivia Allen at Hubspot.com, there are seven key concepts to keep in mind when writing email subject lines. The three most pertinent to the real estate agent include:

            • Urgency: It’s the old FOMO concept at work here – the “fear of missing out.” Agents use this often when discussing low interest rates and low home prices, stressing (hopefully) that they won’t last forever.
            • Curiosity: The baby boomer story about the big retirement mistake fits this concept.
            • Personalization: Smart agents who segment their databases are most likely quite familiar with personalizing content according to a lead’s position in the pipeline, whether a buyer or seller, looking for a condo or a house, etc. Email open rates improve when subject lines are personalized to recipients’ interests.

            You can find all seven concepts and more information about email subject lines at Hubspot.com.

            1. Your real estate email signature

            Recently, an agent in a Facebook real estate group posted his email signature, asking for feedback from the group. And, did he get feedback!

            Here’s a look at his email signature, with identifying information changed:

            Advice he was given that we find spot on includes:
            • Dump the designations. Studies show that real estate consumers neither understand what they mean or care. Unless it’s an academic designation, such as a JD or PhD, they’re just distractions and clutter.
            • That magazine recognition is quite impressive, until you get to the dates. Has he slacked off since 2016? We think he should leave off the dates.
            • Unless it’s law in your area, leave off your license numbers. Also, we would suggest he add “Real Estate” before “Associate Broker” and leave off mention of his appraiser’s license. To the basic consumer, “Associate Broker” doesn’t mean anything. . .broker of what? With the addition of his appraisal license, it appears he may be a broker of appraisals.
            • There are far too many telephone numbers in his signature. Also, what’s the difference between “direct” and “cell?” Isn’t a cell number a direct line? Dump the eFax number completely.
            • The mission statement should go as well. Use that space for an amazing client testimonial.
            • Where’s his website URL, his Facebook, LinkedIn and other social media links?
            • There are several technical errors as well. These include inconsistencies in phone number format; some numbers have the area code in parenthesis while others don’t. Punctuation bloopers (serial commas in the mission statement, etc.).

            His colleagues also reminded him that most emails are opened on mobile devices with small screens and doubt that this will show well on such. They also suggested his phone number should be first so that people don’t have to wade through all the self-serving hype to find it.

            One agent saw what the rest of us missed: too many links in an e-signature may trigger spam filters. All of the blue text in his signature are links.

            The bottom line, from that brilliant agent, is to keep your email signature “simple and license law compliant.”

            Send the Retiring Soon postcard (available in the postcard section under Life Events Series).
            Attract Baby Boomers by sending out the Retiring Soon postcard from the Life Event Series.

            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 Free killer tools to help your success this year!

            1. Become a Listing Legend Free eBook 

            Ready to take a vertical leap in your real estate career? If you’re looking for inspiration…and the tools and methods to dominate a market and go to the top in real estate…you’ll find them in this free book. – Click Here

             

             

            2. “Get More Listings” Free Online Webinar

             

            “Get MORE Listings & Begin to Dominate Your Market!” Free online webinar. Learn the 3-7-27 strategy for explosive growth, why 95% of agents have less than 20% market share, and how to become the agent everyone competes against. – 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, Get More Listings, Geographic Farming, and Sphere of Influence. –Click Here

             

             

            4. The Free One-Page 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

             

             

            5. 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