So you want to make a $100,000 in one year as a real estate agent: 29 thoughts, things to do & think about:
Depending on the market, location, price point, it could take a lot of time or could happen immediately.
Remember, income is a lag indicator and you can only control your lead indicators.
Getting focused on your goal is easy. Staying focused is hard.
You’ll need a big enough database or a way to generate enough leads.
If you don’t have the right strategy and systems you could burn yourself out reaching your goal.
Do you know WHO can you help you or are you trying to do this by yourself?
If you aren’t growing your database/audience, even if you hit your goals, you’ll have the same problems of hitting your goals the next year, and the year after, the year after.
Being learning based is awesome, but you should be focused on what you need to learn now, not what you should learn next.
Know what you need to do and be committed to doing that to get Market Leadership in your SPHERE, so they see you as who you are becoming, not who you were.
“To go fast, go alone. To go far, go together.”
Some months you’re going to do less transactions than you need to do to hit your goals. Some months you’re going to do more. Keep your focus on the MORE months.
Your numbers will grow to the levels you’re growing personally (your mindset and skill set).
Make decisions quickly. Scale it or kill, don’t stand still.
Recognize there's a big difference from peak achievability and continued sustainability.
It’s hard to live in complexity for very long. And most marketing, advertising and business development ideas are over engineered and complex for no reason.
To reach your goals and to stay above that level, you can’t do the right things sometimes. You have to do the right things most of the time.
If you’re doing everything yourself, almost everything is going to take longer. This includes small tasks and big goals.
Even if you’re doing everything right, don’t be surprised by inconsistent outcomes.
Your lifestyle won’t be much different when you do hit $100,000. At least it shouldn’t be.
Save for your taxes.
If you don’t have money to invest into your business, you’ll have to invest the time. And it’s almost impossible to get in front of enough people online by simply spending your time.
The average real estate agent doesn’t even make $50,000 a year, so if you do hit your goal, you’ve doubled the average. That’s incredible.
You have to remove emotion from your decision making.
You’ll probably have to start doing some things you don’t like and stop doing things you do.
Make sure you’re in the right environment, every day.
You don’t have to be obsessed with metrics, but with limited access to resources (time, energy, money) you must be aware and careful how you invest in your marketing, lead generation, lead conversion, platforms and business development.
You can’t just like helping people buy and sell a home. You have to be good at finding people to help. And getting people who want help to find you.
Brute force only works so well, for so long.
Successfully reaching your goal isn’t something that happens in the future. Success comes from what you did today… and yesterday… and the day before that… and the month before that… and the year before that.
Not increasing sales production is a common frustration amongst businesses large and small.
For the small business start up, or a self-employed freelancer, or a real estate agent, or maybe even a network marketer, you might find yourself feeling discouraged when you try but you can't increase sales production.
Maybe you've hit a plateau.
Maybe you're not making enough sales to even make ends meet.
Whatever your reasons are for wanting to increase sales production, they're your reasons.
But maybe you're looking at strangers on Instagram in same industry as you. You see them showing off their success and they make it look easy. Makes you wonder what they know that you don't know.
Or you see friends on Facebook celebrating their latest sales.
It looks so easy, right?
HERE'S THE TRUTH ABOUT SUCCESS IN BUSINESS AND INCREASING SALES PRODUCTION:
You have a lot on your plate that you didn't think about before you started your business.
Did you think about all the laws, rules and regulations before starting a business, selling a product or service, or being self-employed? Are you an attorney?
What did you know about marketing and sales?
What is your accounting experience and understanding of taxes and 1099's? Are you a CPA?
It's easy to understand why you'd feel overwhelmed and frustrated that you're not increasing your sales.
Here is a list of twelve reasons you might not be getting to the sales production level you desire.
12 Reasons You're Not Increasing Sales Production
1. YOU ARE DOING NOTHING
There is so much to learn when just starting up. Or deciding to level up.
There are so many new tools, technology and shiny things that thought leaders want you to know and vendors want you to buy.
New marketing ideas such as content marketing, email marketing, social media marketing, search engine marketing....(let me catch my breath) plus learning how to use Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Wordpress, Youtube, Instagram and Snapchat.
It's no wonder that you are overwhelmed and go into a state of shock.
You do nothing instead of taking action on something. Instead of taking action on anything.
It is paralysis by analysis.
2. YOU ARE SPENDING TOO MUCH MONEY ON WRONG THINGS
You’ve heard the cliche before, “You have to spend money to make money.”
Sure, but you need to make money to have money to spend.
There are many vendors out there claiming the “magic pill” for your lead generation and marketing needs, promising, "... increasing your sales production is easy with THIS."
Don’t get me wrong.
You do have to spend money.
But you need to spend money on some essential tools and technology not magic bullets and gadgets that are fun or pretty.
If you spend too much money on the wrong things there isn’t money left over for the essential things.
I've seen many a small business owner or self-employed person attempt to do what I call “The Law of The Short Cut.”
“The Law of The Short Cut” is the based on the fact that we tend to look for the easiest, quickest way to achieve a result.
This usually leads to skipping steps or short cutting the process. Or by spending money you don’t really have on something that will allegedly do the lead generation for you, make your marketing easier and increase sales faster.
If you want muscles you have to work out. You just do.
If you want to increase your sales you have to do the work.
You can speed up the process but you can’t short cut it. Don’t try to short cut it by over spending on the wrong things.
3. NOT ALIGNED WITH TOP PRODUCERS
Who are you spending your time with?
If you feel stuck and you're not increasing your sales production, hitting your revenue numbers, look at who you're associating with.
If you're a real estate agent and want to be doing 24 transactions a year you shouldn’t be hanging around other agents that are doing less than 24.
How are you going to learn the habits, rituals, mindset and activities that increase your sales and make you a Top Producer if you are not surrounding yourself with people who are.
Do you know who the Top Producers are in your office and in your company? Your local area?
How much time are you spending with them? Learning from them?
Don’t just look at what they are doing now though. Look at what they did to get there.
They might say things like they tried podcasting for business, did a few episodes but it didn't increase their sales
Also, don’t listen if they tell you what to do.
That probably won’t work either.
Sometimes free advice is the most expensive. Especially from the wrong person.
5. NOT ASKING FOR HELP
Escape velocity is the speed needed to "break free" from a gravitational field without further propulsion.
There is an actual formula to this. No joke.
I look at someone feeling stuck, that's not increasing sales production, trying to move their business to the next level as needing to apply the escape velocity concept to their sales and business.
Where you are right now has an enormous gravitational force pushing against you.
Let's pretend you're a Realtor that wants to do 12 transactions a year. You are fighting resistance just to get there. You will feel the same resistance to increase sales production from 12 to 24. And again to move from 24 to 36. And then to move beyond those numbers to the next level.
When you are feeling overwhelmed, that overload moment, or burnout coming on... that is gravity and resistance.
This is when you need to ask for help.
Find someone that is willing and wanting to help.
Somebody that can give you the fuel to fire your engines to get enough speed and maintain the speed to reach escape velocity.
You can’t succeed alone in business.
Even a boxer has people in their corner. Even a golfer has coaches and a caddie on the course with them. Even a race car driver has a pit crew.
When you feel resistance look for assistance.
6. NOT UTILIZING YOUR NETWORK
Your network is a group of people that like you, trust you and want you to succeed. Your friends, family, neighbors, past co-workers, church members, club members.
Majority of small business, especially service businesses are built on trust.
People need to be able to trust you.
They need to trust that you can help guide them through whatever crazy, complicated, confusing process they need help with.
Increasing sales by building your network and being a Referrals First Business isn’t about learning how to get or ask for referrals.
It is about learning how to contribute and provide value to your network. It’s about becoming referable.
When you help people and demonstrate value to them, they will enjoy being a part of your success.
Succeed through others. See #5.
7. WORKING WITH TIME-KILLERS
In my experience of doing over 10,000 hours of productivity coaching and sales training, I’ve noticed that many business owners and salespeople think because they have nothing better to do that they will work clients who will “know what they want when they see it” or a buyer that “has just a few more questions."
If you're tired of not increasing your sales production and want to take your business to the next level, there's never a bad time to start creating good habits.
Habits are hard to break.
And if you create the habit of working with Time-Killers it will be a hard habit to let go.
But, if you can rid your schedule of these time-killers early, your ability to do this later in your career will be easy.
Focus your time on business development activities that bring you the type of clients you want to work with.
8. NOT DREAMING BIG ENOUGH
The worst thought you can put into your head is average.
Even worse is failure.
Earl Nightingale says “You become what you think about”.
Do you spend your time thinking about how you don’t have any business?
Are you spending energy thinking about what could wrong?
What will happen if your sales don't increase?
What will you have to do if you fail out of the industry?
The hardest part of being an entrepreneur is controlling your mindset.
By being an entrepreneur and self employed you are in control of your future and your future is unpredictable. There could be a lot of uncertainty.
Uncertainty is scary.
Are you concerned about where your next transaction is coming from?
Do you feel like you'll never be able to increase sales?
Are you growing tired of the up and down roller coaster of sales production?
Being able to have clarity of vision of what you want your life, your business and your world to look like and having complete confidence in your ability to achieve your vision is essential to taking your business and sales to the next level.
9. TELLING PEOPLE YOU ARE NEW
Granted in some worlds, being a start up is sexy.
In the real world though people like experience. If you are newer to an industry, this could be a big reason why your sales production might not be at the level you want.
If you have developed your skills, know your stories, know your market, your audience and numbers, most people won't question your experience level or ask if you're new.
If you don’t do all these things and you flinch on basic questions, you're sending a signal that they should dig deeper and they will question your skill level and if you're new.
You don’t need to volunteer that info though. Let your great skills speak for themselves.
Have quiet confidence.
10. NOT HAVING A BUSINESS PLAN
Let's not underestimate what you're doing here.
You are operating a business.
You are the CEO.
A board of directors doesn't have to give you that title for it to be true. And it might be a little douchey to call yourself the CEO if your a solo-entrepreneur. But that doesn't make it any less true.
And as a CEO, why would you not have a plan?
Now, I'm not necessarily talking about a 24 page business plan that takes a week and an offsite retreat to come up with.
You're not trying get a loan or venture capital for your business.
You just need some goals and targets to aim for.
Whenever you feel lost, uninspired, unmotivated-you should review the plan to get refocused on the big picture.
Also, by having another individual hold you accountable to your short term goals and action items, you will greater awareness.
Having greater awareness will lead to greater success.
11. NOT GETTING THE RIGHT/ENOUGH TRAINING
Much of the training, especially the stuff that is always "launching" barely scratches the surface on how to truly operate a successful business.
Especially when it comes to marketing and sales training.
Marketing is about psychology and understanding how people think. This means understanding copywriting, user experience and even website design.
Sales is about how people decide. Why do people do what they do?
How can you better understand the process of how people decide?
Plus, you need to understand lead conversion, lead nurturing, systems, technology, etc.
But I see a lot of the training being offered that just causes people to zigzag around. There is no concreteness and no alignment.
What is the shortest distance between two points?
A straight line, right?
You wouldn’t think a straight line is the shortest distance with all the “Flavor of the Week” training being offered to business owners.
To take your business to the next level you need to make sure you have the right training.
One more thing to keep in mind on this point, your business will only grow to the level you grow.
If you're not improving yourself, your business and sales will stop improving.
12. NOT DOING THE RIGHT CONSISTENT FOCUSED ACTIVITIES
If you can break free from #1 reason you're not increasing sales production and start taking action, make sure you are taking action on the right things.
Do you now what activities you need to be doing to build the foundation of your business on?
To increase sales production and take your business to the next level you have to build on something and then build up.
If your foundation is weak, your business will crash as you try to reach the next level and increase sales.
Once you’ve identified the right activities you will build the foundation of your business on, you have to consistently, day in, day out, take action.
Diligently, you need to take consistent focused action.
But, if the wrong training from Reason #11 sidetracks or distracts you, you might stop doing something before it starts to work.
Increasing sales and taking your business to the next level takes consistent focused action on the right activities.
This isn’t a comprehensive list, but it’s a great starting point if you’re looking to increase your sales production. Increasing sales isn't magic or rocket science, but it does need you to focus on the right things and ignore the wrong things.
When it comes to breaking free of feeling stuck and figuring out why you're not increasing your sales production, many businesses struggle or just ignore the problem.
It's easier to hope things get better versus making difficult changes.
Delivering amazing products and services is important, but it’s also important to constantly increase sales so you always have people to deliver your products and services to.
You can dramatically increase your sales production.
Just identify what reasons you're not increasing your sales production (maybe it's one reason, maybe it's all) and go to work on eliminating that roadblock so you can drive sales.
When you start to accept that you can't just like helping people, that you have to be good at finding people to help and getting people who want help to find you, increasing sales is easy.
ONE MORE THING TO TAKE ACTION ON
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Today, a week into the new year I wanted to recap 2016 for me.
I've seen so many people complaining about 2016 being the worst. And they can't wait for 2016 to be over.
From my perspective, to blame a year for something negates any positives that happened to you or by you. And to throw that much shade on a year, to not acknowledge the good, what you're proud of or grateful for, in my book... is setting yourself up to make next year even worse. You're going to get more of the same.
So in being some what hypocritical I'm going to say 2016 was the GREATEST YEAR OF MY ENTIRE LIFE.
4. In relation to my last email (the one below) I started running and ran my first 5K with Katherine on Thanksgiving day. She also started running this year. Neither of us were "runners" before this year.
In fact, when I committed to getting into shape in April/Mayish of this year, I could barely walk a mile at a brisk pace without getting shin-splits.
5. We paid off a mortgage and now own a property FREE & CLEAR. This is an incredible feeling. It was a huge goal. A huge accomplishment. And does so many things for us emotionally and financially.
I'd love to hear why 2016 was awesome for you. Contact me and let me know.
If however you hated 2016 and you can't find any good in it, don't bother emailing my back. Just put that up on Facebook. I think that's the appropriate place for it. ;)
Happy New Year! Darin Persinger
PS: By the way, you don't NEED to be negative or complain on Facebook. Look at my wall. You'd have to go back over 2 years probably to find anything negative.
The world doesn't need more negativity. And do you know the worst thing about posting or sharing something negative on Facebook?
It's permanent. It's like a tattoo. It's not just a thought or even something you said out loud.
That negativity is now documented and stays in the world forever.
Focus on seller listings or buyers, As a Realtor? You two businesses, generating buyer leads and seller leads. Right now, you have a choice to make. Which part of your real estate business is going to get your time, energy and money? If you are not leading with getting Seller Leads, I think you're crazy.
I know this might sound crazy, especially if you are new around here, and especially if you are not on my email list, but hear me out.
You will learn a few things and we'll have some fun along the way.
Don't worry, I'm not suggesting that you take up a lightsaber or get yourself into a podrace.
You'll learn how you can bump up your #real estate lead generation... which can lead to some extra transactions and commission dollars along the way.
You must unlearn what you have learned
The reality is, there is a lot of misinformation, outdated information and untested theories when it comes to #lead generation and online marketing.
If your idea of a lead generation strategy is posting and commenting on facebook and your internet marketing consists of only have a page on broker's website with no specific traffic getting strategies, we have a lot of work to do.
Let me know if this sounds familiar:
Spend 30-45 minutes on Facebook in the morning
Click over to your email and weed through a few emails
Go over to a few of your favorite websites and "Pin" a few things
Check your Google Analytics
Head back to Facebook to see if you missed anything
Stare at your CRM, decide you don't feel like calling these people because it's been so long since you talked to them last
Walk out to coffee pot for a refill
Jump on to a webinar to learn about the "latest" lead generation strategy
Drop into your favorite #Facebook Group and post a question asking how everyone is generating their leads.
Finally publish that blog post on the new local cupcake shop
You might think being online will bring you buyer leads, that time "hanging out with your sphere" on Facebook will lead to referrals and joining all those webinars and watching the videos helps you stay innovative and ahead of the game. Young padowan, you have much to learn.
You must start by forgetting what you think you know. Unlearn what you've learned. (Unless it's from me. ;) )
Find your Yoda
Every Hero has a Mentor. And you are the Hero of this Story.
Obi-Wan had #Qui-Gon Jinn. Luke had Yoda. A Mentor gives you guidance on your journey, helps you with limiting beliefs and pushes you to be better than you thought you could be.
They've already been there and done that, so they can seriously accelerate your learning process versus you trying to learn it on your own through trial and error.
Reading a book or taking a class is great, but it's generalized information. A mentor can customize and personalize it for you.
You need to find your own Yoda.
If you want to lower your golf score, find a local golf pro or someone that has a low handicap. If you want to eat better, find a nutritionist and learn how to grocery shop and prepare a few meals. If you want to make sure you're exercising with the right intensity and proper form, find a great personal trainer. If you want to generate more #real estate leads, talk to an agent in your office or company that is generating massive amounts of leads.
In the original #Star Wars film, the #Force is first described by Jedi Master #Obi-Wan Kenobi as an energy field created by all living things, that surrounds and penetrates living beings and binds the galaxy together. When becoming a Jedi lead generator, you need to learn the ways of the Force and understand how everything in your life, business and world is interconnected:
Drinking too much caffeine can affect your ability to focus.
Your poor sleeping habits can and will affect your energy level.
Having alerts on your phone or computer for new email or Facebook messages can distract you and take you out of your flow.
Reading a negative email in the morning can put in you a bad mood for the day.
Not time blocking your To-Do List can lead to not getting your Top Priorities done.
Being "too busy" coordinating transactions to lead generate.
Marketing a great listing will lead to a new buyer lead.
Working with a great client who gives you referrals to other great clients.
The Force binds everything together. One thing going wrong can cause a "disturbance in the force". You need to identify your priorities, find a balance in rest, and focus on Consistent-Focused-Action that are connected to your goals. And everything is connected. And everything you do and how you respond to everything that happens affects everything else.
Recognizing this will change your life and business. Showing discipline in one area can carry over as a positive into other areas.
For example, the better you manage your time, the more leads you can generate. It really works like that.
You might think you have a lead generation problem, but what you really have is a time management problem. You might wish you could be more productive and get more done, but what you really have is a limiting belief and mindset problem. The Force is always there, just depends if it is the darkside or lightside.
Control your emotions
"Control, control. You must learn control." - Yoda
"Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, hate leads to suffering." - Yoda
Yoda is telling you to recognize your emotions and get them under control. Most people don’t realize when they are angry that there is another emotion causing that anger. Knowing this is the first step to owning your emotions.
Let’s first take a look at things that cause failing businesses, poor business practices, frustration and burnout.
Emotions and ego.
When you make business decisions based on emotions or ego, you are almost certainly setting yourself up for failure, sooner or later. When you make decisions based on emotions, instead of relying on metrics, you are letting your fear of failure or rejection or desire to please people, run your business.
What this means is when you get a complaint from a small percentage of people, you're listening. Instead of looking at numbers that matter, you are listening to people who don’t. These are people that are probably never going to buy from you, sell with you, refer you, recommend you and are just perpetually unhappy in their own life.
That’s why, I don’t care about unsubscribes from my email list, and you shouldn’t either.
Emotional Business Owners concern themselves with making people feel comfortable and not offended. Success Business Owners help people get the results they desire.
For example, “How do I stop getting unsubscribes?" is such the wrong mindset to have, but so many people do. This prevents them from even getting started with email marketing or effective follow up.
Do you know how to make sure you never strike out at the plate?
Don't ever step up to bat.
Do you know how to make sure you never miss a shot?
Don't ever take one.
Do you know how to make sure you never have an omelet?
Don't ever break any eggs.
If you want to do effective marketing, prospecting and lead generating, you are going to lose some people along the way. The key word in that last sentence was effective. Thus the reason I italicized it. It would be a mistake to make your objective be to make sure no one unsubscribes from your email list. That is operating your email marketing from emotion.
My emails that make the most sales ALSO have the highest unsubscribe rate. My emails that get the most replies of gratitude and thanks ALSO get the most hate mail and unsubscribes.
Email marketing is like business. It's not for people that want to play it safe and can't deal with rejection. Your marketing, business development, lead generation and lead conversion can’t be driven by the few that complain or even the few that “tell you” you are awesome. You’re letting your emotions and ego run things. The only thing that matters is the result.
Do people take action on your marketing?
Are you generating leads? Are you capturing leads?
Are you people signing up on your website?
Are you getting referrals?
These metrics are the true feedback, not the the person that feels you are too “salesy".
What I’ve been talking about here is negative feedback causing you to making decisions with your emotions. Positive feedback can cause poor decision making also. TIm Ferriss writes in his book,“The 4 Hour Work Week” about testing products.
“Ask ten people if they would buy your product. Then tell those who said “yes” that you have ten units in your car and ask them to buy. The initial positive responses, given by people who to be liked and aim to please, become polite refusals as soon as real money is at stake. To get an accurate indicator of commercial viability, don’t ask people if they would buy -- ask them to buy. The response to the second is the only one that matters.”
Decision making on #lead generation strategies and systems need to be made on metrics, and enough of them. Not emotions, negative or positive.
Don’t go crazy and let your emotions take you over to the Dark side.
That's how Anakin Skywalker became Darth Vadar.
Have A Plan
"This is some rescue. You came in here, but you did you have a plan for getting out?"
Remember the scene when #Luke Skywalker busts into save #Princess Leia? Princess Leia questions their rescue plan. They then find themselves stuck inside a trash compactor with the walls moving in to crush them. Let this serve as lesson that you must have a plan.
“I want to sell more homes” is half-assed. “I want to increase my sales production by 50% in the next 6 months” is a plan.
“I’m going to prospect today" is half-assed. “I am going to call all of yesterday's new leads, call every lead that has been active in the last week and then call 3 people in my sphere today" is a plan.
“I’m want to get better on the phone” is half-assed. “I am going create a script and practice for 15 minutes a day" is a plan.
"I'm going to #generate more leads on my website" is half-assed. "I'm am going to create a traffic generating strategy and make a lead capture offer on each page" is plan.
When you plan ahead, you don't have to make it up as you go along. You don't have to wake up in the morning and wonder what you are going to do today.
When you plan ahead, you reduce your chances of ended up in a trash compactor.
If you want to be a master Jedi, you need to plan out your #lead generation activities (calls, script, objective, etc) before you walk into the office in the morning. Know exactly what you want to achieve.
If you want to be a Jedi, it takes training, being mentored, learning and dedication. There’s no online Jedi webinar you can take. You can’t learn lightsaber skills via some Youtube videos. You don't develop your fighting ability by reading a PDF.
If you’re going to generate more leads, it takes training, being mentored, learning and dedication. And then you have to do. Not just try, but do.
You must implement.
Being a Jedi isn’t a job. It's who they are. Being a real estate agent, a business owner, an entrepreneur, isn't a job. It's who you are.
If Obi-Wan wanted to stop being a Jedi, he couldn’t walk up to Yoda and say “here's my letter of resignation.” He is a Jedi, and that will never change. Even when he is living in a cave on Tatooine, he is still a Jedi.
You need to take this committed mindset with your path as a real estate agent and business owner.
Do or Do Not. There is No Try
This isn't just one of my favorite quotes from the Star Wars franchise, it's one of my favorite quotes ever. About anything.
Think it's a stupid movie quote and doesn't make any sense?
Do this... Is there pen or pencil nearby? Try to pick it up.
Or if you're reading this on a phone or tablet, try to put your phone or tablet down.
Did you or did you not pick up the pen or put down the phone/tablet?
You can't try to do something. You do or you don't.
And this is what Master Yoda is saying to Luke, "Hey Luke, You can either lift that x-wing out of the swamp, or you can’t."
You can either drive traffic to your website and convert it, or you can’t. You can either pick up the phone and call your sphere, or you can’t. You can either write copy that gives people clarity and compels them to take action, or you can't.
Every January, agents start off the year with some goals and good intentions. Sure, they try to make some calls for a couple of weeks. They try calling some expireds. They try holding an open house or two. They try to put together a newsletter.
But it gets hard, or boring. They run into roadblocks, or rejection. Urgent things and emergencies show up to distract them and pull them off course.
A Jedi is 100% committed. They are a Jedi. You have to be 100% committed to lead generation. Do just try. Do.
Now, I’m not saying you have to start prospecting for three hours a day. Or that you have to door knock 100 homes a day. Or that you have to make a 100 contacts a week and ask, "Who do you know who...".
Instead, you need to pick one lead generation strategy this month, look to enhance it, systemize it and do it. And/Or give you one tactic or activity that you know deep down is not working. If it's not bringing you leads, or closings, quit it. (And you know what it is, even if the EXsperts and GoRubes are telling you to do it)
As Obi-Wan asked, "Who’s the more foolish? The fool, or the fool who follows him?"
Then next month, continue to work on it while you pick another lead generation strategy to implement it, enhance it and systemize it. Just one thing a month and then focus on doing it and being consistent every day without fail.
Give up a social media platform - Between Facebook, Twitter, Google +, Pinterest, Instagram, etc. There is probably one of those that you can give up to get back some time and reinvest that time somewhere else.
Remove yourself from one Facebook Group - There is probably at least one Facebook Group that not only sucks your time, but your energy and emotions because of the constant debate and disagreement that goes on.
Work on Connecting with 1 Sphere a Day - Eventually, work towards connecting with 3.
Think Bigger because size does not matter
After Luke uses The Force to move some stones around, he attempts to move the X-wing out of the swamp. He fails and whines, "Master, moving stones around is one thing. This is totally different."
Yoda responds, "NO! No different. Only different in your mind."
What Yoda is trying to do is shift the mindset of Luke and get him to realize that if you can do one thing, you can do another. Just because the stones are small and ship is large, what's the difference?
Luke: I can't. It's too big!
Yoda: Size matters not. Look at me. Judge me by my size, do you? Hmm? Hmm.
If you can do one thing, why can't you do another? This is what I talk about when I talk about 10x your business.
If you can do one transaction, why can't you do 10? And if you can do 10 transactions, why can't you do 100?
If your mindset is "because 100 transactions is too big" or "doing 100 transactions is totally different than doing 10", stop.
It's only different in your mind.
After Yoda raises the X-wing out of the swamp, Luke goes to Yoda wide eyed and tells him, "I don't believe it."
Yoda responds, "That is why you fail."
May the Force be with you
So there you go. You now know how to move from padawan to Jedi Master. How The Force can help you start to generate more real #estate leads.
If you need a Mentor, aka a "coach" to work with you and help you "do", let's talk.
I'll leave you with this thought from Qui-Gon Jinn.
Over the past couple of years, as the real estate market has started to uptick, I’ve noticed a crazy increase in the number of emails from Realtors that are looking to increase their #sales, production and commission dollars. Many real estate agents are feeling better about the market, their business and have some confidence that they can now grow their sales, not just maintain.
*Sidenote - there is nothing wrong with this, but the reality is that there is never a bad time to grow your business, if you have identified a great niche or market segment, are utilizing great marketing, taking calculated risks and using measurable control in your expenses.
Although I’ve spent the past eight years helping agents with increasing sales and productivity with online marketing and email marketing through , I was originally licensed in 1997 and started managing and leading agents and brokerages in 2001. The experience, time on task, sure volume of transactions I’ve been involved with, the number of Realtors I’ve personally worked with, I’ve seen the art and science of selling more homes and increasing your production. And with that, have developed the Persinger Real Estate Productivity Philosophy for this….
If you are a real estate agent and struggle to sell enough homes to make “ends meet”, this post is for you.
If you are a successful Realtor, but hit a plateau and are interested in taking your sales to the next level, a lot of the same advice will apply (and we even have an entire section for you that explains any differences).
If you are a rookie real estate agent and new to sales, keep reading. I guarantee you’ll learn something.
To me, increasing sales, productivity and profit is more than just the pursuit of making more money – though there’s nothing wrong with that. It’s about being better, the next best version of yourself (version 2.0 or perhaps Version 8.7), confidence in your ability and providing more clients with exceptional service, so they aren’t having to work with shitty, slimy real estate agents. And no matter how badly you want it be this way, simply being a “better agent” does not lead to an increase in sales and production.
Stop complaining that other agents need to raise the bar. Or that you are a "better agent". Or that those "guarantees" the jerk agents offer are a lie or bait and switch. Stop whining about how you know more about contracts or addenda. Posting in a Facebook group about how bad the realtors in your local market place won't help either, so stop that too.
"What would you do if, magically and suddenly, you woke up tomorrow and your business had doubled?
Hit reply and let me know.
I was shocked by the responses. But it gave me great insight to the mindset, limiting beliefs and personal constraints many agents put on themselves.
A word that was actually used a number of times in the responses was "Panic."
Now isn't that interesting?
And in reality about 50% of the responses involved similar responses that I would put in the category of "Panic, Freakout".
What this tells me: just as many real estate agents have a Fear of Success as those who have a Fear of Failure.
You have to get real with yourself here for a moment...
Are you the type of person that has a Fear of Success?
Are you afraid your business could be "too big?"
Which leads to one of the biggest, greatest, scariest myths when it comes to increasing your #sales production.
Myth: If I sold more homes I would be working harder and more hours.
This is a biggest myth about increasing sales production. Some people actually believe the more successful you become, the more time and effort it will take, and the less freedom you will have.
Think about it... if you are working 50 hours a week right now to make $100,000, do you really think you have to work 100 hours a week to increase your income to $200,000? And then would you have to work 200 hours a week to increase your income to $400,000?
That's obviously crazy. Any time you connect hours worked to your success you are setting up the wrong equation. The trick is not to try to apply more time or effort to the equation but to think of the equation differently. Like how effective direct response marketing is and how it adds a huge leverage piece.
The Reality: Everyone has the same amount of time, and hard work is simply hard work. As a result, what you do in the time worked determines how many homes you sell and if you can increase your sales production. (This right here sums up the secret to increasing your sales production. Time to deep dive into this.)
There are a bunch of related myths when it comes to time and "working harder".
Myth: I'm already too busy.
Reality: Being too busy and not having time is having a lack of priorities.
Myth: I use technology to be efficient and get more done.
Reality: You can be efficient without doing anything that is effective. Or as Peter Drucker said, "There is nothing so useless as doing efficiently that which should not be done at all."
Myth: Everything is important and needs to get done.
Reality: The 80/20 Rule rules everything. Stop ignoring it. Stop forgetting about it.
Recently, some coaching clients shared with me they are not making more money.
They have been working with me for some time, but they have not started making a considerable amount of more money.
That's a problem, huh?
Well, not according to them, or to me.
(They are a husband and wife team)
When they first started working with me, they were working about 125 combined hours a week. They had all sorts of things going on in their business. They were doing social media, had even hired a social media manager. They were calling expireds, sometimes door knocking them. They worried about blog content and their Facebook updates. They had a distressed homeowners website they tried to upkeep.
They were bouncing all around like a jack-rabbit, on crack, on a hot stove.
But now they are working about 90 hours a week. They went from 125 hours a week combined, to 90 hours a week.
That is 35 hours less a week working.
That's like getting back an entire work week, every week.
An extra 4 weeks a month.
An extra 50 weeks a year.
They might not be making more money, but they created an extra year, every year for themselves.
Does business really need to be a 24/7 thing?
Do you really need to miss out on your kids events and time with them?
Do you really not have to have a social life with neighbors, friends and family and resort to "social media" as your actual "social life"?
Success comes in many shapes and forms.
You decide what you want it to be.
You have to be proactive in all of this though. Your business, your sales, your relationships, your production, etc. You have to be intentional and purposeful.
Or you suffer the consequences… I have no hard data to back this up, but I’ve heard a rumor that real estate agents suffer from double the divorce rate. And I’ve heard Jon Taffer from the TV show, Bar Rescue say that the divorce rate is 82% for married business owners.
Let’s try to make sense of those numbers for a moment.
(You might be wondering what divorce has to do with selling more homes, right? Everything. You can’t give focus to your work, when there is chaos at home. When you can’t give focus, you won’t be able to grow your business. Well, you could. But you would be doing it at the risk of your marriage, personal life and probably your health. That goes against what being a Productivity Junkie is about.)
To understand these numbers, it would help to know what causes divorce.
You hear money problems cause divorce right? So, if you are struggling in your business, that stress on you and your spouse, leads to further frustrations and arguments.
Being a business owner often leads to working odd hours. This holds doubly true for real estate agents. You are showing property at night, going out for listing appointments on Saturday and holding open houses on Sunday. Lack of personal time with and support from a spouse often leads to divorce. You gotta keep the romance alive. Hard to do if you are never together.
I’m a fan of dogged determination and 100% desire to succeed, but if you are doing it wrong, it could have a backlash on your home life, personal life and even your health.
Today’s article outlines the three most important things I’ve learned and observed about increasing sales over the past 17+ years in real estate, sales and business.
Your time is the most important thing
Neil A. Fiore said, “There’s a myth that time is money. In fact, time is more precious than money. It’s a nonrenewable resource. Once you’ve spent it, and if you’ve spent it badly, it’s gone forever.”
If you are trying to grow you business, how you use your time will account for 80-90% of your successes or failures.
What that means: you’d be better off working on less things, instead of trying to do more.
The reality is: Brute force only works so well, for so long. And if you are focused only on increasing your sales, chances are you're going to do it wrong. You are going work harder, work longer and try to do more. I’ve seen so many agents fail going this route.
They decide that they want to sell more and increase their production. They decide they just need to work harder, put in more hours and put more on their plate. This just leads you to overwhelm, frustration and burnout. Maybe you’ve been there? Or are currently there?
When I get emails from people who explain the fact that they can’t find any more time in the day, but the really want to know how to sell more or they ask me what apps, software or technology they should be using to be more productive, I always first ask about the person’s daily schedule. And more often than not, that person proudly tells me how hard they working, how busy they are, but undoubtedly their schedule is not consistent. It's usually very random. It’s not scheduled, structured or time blocked. It’s not proactive, it’s reactive. It’s not focused on the Impact Activities, Important Activities or High Dollar Producing Activities. It’s bouncing from what is currently urgent to the latest emergency.
Here’s the truth: If you are not growing your sales, you are not focused on the right activities and not managing your time effectively.
Some more truth: You are overwhelmed and struggle to get things done for the most simple of reasons…
… because today’s world is full of distractions, technology can be disorienting, your calendar and to-do list has become cluttered and you’re frustrated that you can’t take advantage of every opportunity that comes your way.
And it’s not really your fault. Not 100% at least.
You are being bombarded with the idea that technology or some app is going to make you more productive or increase your sales. Your brokerage, or your local MLS board is bringing in speakers giving you a presentation like, "The 40 Must-Have Apps To Increase Your Productivity."
If there are 40 Must-Haves of anything, then none of them can be that amazing. And all the wasted time it takes to download, learn and use is just obscene. Think about it… how many apps do you have on your phone or tablet? Even if you spent just one minute a day using each, how much time are you spending using it?
If you are spending 40-60 minutes in technology and apps to try to become more productive... do you see the problem here?
Your business isn’t growing because of your lack of tech savviness, that’s another myth.
To grow your business you simply have to start doing the right things. This means doing less, not more.
Doing more of the right things.
The Productivity Junkies Philosophy of “Selling More, By Doing Less.”
I had a #real estate coaching client send me this video. They told me it reminds them of coaching with me.
“The less you do, the more you do.”
Think closely about what I’m about to tell you, since it’s going to change the way you think about getting things done, productivity, selling more homes and making more money.
FOCUS is more powerful than any technology or tool, because the things that you focus on can either make you successful or cause you to fail.
The elimination of things from your schedule or to-do list that aren’t truly important or impactful is more powerful than any technology or tool. This is true because there are only so many hours in day. Everyone is given the same amount of time , what you do with it is the difference between selling more or getting burnt out.
Working More Hours Does NOT Work
The reason you cannot #increase productivity by working more hours is because you will just fill up the hours with more activities, tasks and projects.
By working more hours… by sacrificing more time… you simply are working more and longer. Working more hours in a day or week doesn’t equate to success.
As Tim Ferriss says about productivity in his best-selling book, The 4-Hour Work Week…
“…our culture tends to reward personal sacrifice instead of personal productivity. Few people choose to measure the results of their actions and thus measure their contribution in time. More time equals more self-worth and more reinforcement from those above and around them.
Before you start trying to do more transactions, I want to you cut back the hours you are working.
Yes. You heard that right. Cut back. Do less.
What you are doing here is you are finding your pace. Once you find your pace and you get comfortable with it, you can start to increase it.
Business and sales is not the only place this works by the way. For example, when trying to lose weight, it makes the most sense to get your diet right first. Start with healthy eating habits BEFORE starting an exercise routine. Why? Well, diet makes up 80- 90% of the success in losing weight. And if you start exercising first, your body is going to go into shock, wondering what is going on and desire more calories, because of this new stress of exercising is putting on it.
It's about priorities.
Now, for every person, the number of hours you are going to cut back to is different:
For some people, you might be working 10 hours a week.
For others, it might be a 30 hour work week.
For a rookie, it still might be about working 60+ hours a week, because you need to develop sales skills, learn about the industry and get educated about your market.
Now, you might be thinking “there’s no way I can cut back on the hours I'm working, Darin! I have too much to do!”
You have a choice here... continue to let that reactive thinking control you, your actions, your results and your income. Or bust that personal constraint and realize the reality: NOT all activities have equal importance.
Depending on your background you are bringing some baggage with you into this career.
If you were an hourly employee before, you are most likely thinking about trading time for dollars. But that's not the way real estate works. You get paid for a result.
If you were a salaried employee, you might be thinking about tasks and projects. Again, the way you get paid in real estate is if you get a house sold, not if you complete a bunch of projects by doing a bunch of tasks really well and really efficiently.
What you must keep in mind is you are not punching a clock anymore. You don’t get paid time and a half for overtime. You don’t have to impress your boss anymore. You are not climbing a company ladder.
You are the boss!
Track It, Measure It, Increase It
I'm a big fan of tracking and measuring when it comes to your sales and marketing. You need to know your numbers. It should not come as a surprise to you then, I'm a big fan of tracking and measuring your time, since I feel time is even more important than money.
The reality is a lot of people UNDERestimate where and how they spend their time. I'm going to give you an exercise in a moment about how to track your time, because you have to do this in a very specific way. It's not just about writing down what you did. It's about knowing how you are spending your time is connected to your goal of increasing your business.
The PJ's Productivity Model has 6 different areas that your activities could fall in to. Let's start at the bottom and work our way up.
1. Useless Activities
These are activities that don't contribute in any way to you growing your business or making more money. You know things like Candy Crush, watching that cat video, going to yet another webinar on something you already know, but still have NOT implemented. If you are brutally honest, I know you will find a few of these in your day.
2. Urgent Activities
These are things that you are usually going to find in your email or voicemail. They are activities that is someone elses To-Do List for you, not the To-Do List you created for yourself. They are not planned or scheduled, but you do it NOW anyways.
3. Emergency Activities
Now, up to this point you might be thinking to yourself, "Damn, this Darin guy is cold. He must be a Time Robot, or Productivity Cyborg, or something. He's like a bulldozer through excuses." I wouldn't say that is 100% true, because I do live in hard cold truth of reality, this is why I share what I share and the way I do. Because of this, I understand that you can't always control your schedule, your day or your plan. No plan survives its collision with reality.
An Emergency Activity is something involves the threat of an immediate deadline tied to a decision or outcome involved in something large. This typically means "keeping a contract together".
I'll give you an example from my life...
It was Friday night and the Impractical Jokers where in Seattle. Katherine, my wife, and I love the Impractical Jokers and we had tickets. As we were driving downtown to the show, Katherine was on the phone with a buyer, a home inspector and a listing agent. The inspection contingency deadline was for 9 pm, only 3 hours away and the buyer had some doubts and questions. Now, some trainers and coaches say your 20% is all about lead generation and prospecting and scheduling that at the same time every day so it gets done, but here my wife is 3 hours away from helping her buyer make a very important decision. Is she really supposed to ignore the call and just enjoy her night with me?
You can't do that, can you?
But don't confuse Emergency Activities with Urgent Activities. Urgent Activities usually don't lead to much of a pay off, but the Emergency Activities do. Think of it like the difference between an emergency room and an urgent care center.
Treat severe and life-threatening conditions
Hospital emergency rooms have specially trained doctors, paramedics, nurses, and other support staff that can recognize, diagnose and make recommendations on a wide variety of medical issues
Emergency rooms are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week
Urgent Care Centers:
Focus on diagnosing and treating conditions that aren’t life-threatening yet they need to be taken care of right away
Offer quality care on a walk-in basis
4. Low Dollar Producing Activities
These are the activities that you could hire, outsource or delegate for cost substantially lower than what your average dollar per hour income is.
5. High Dollar Producing Activities
The things that get you actually get paid for like getting referrals, buyers, sellers, lead conversion, appointments and contracts.
6. Impact Activities
This is taking time to truly work "On" your business. Creating strategies for your High Dollar Producing Activities. Creating systems for your business. Finding, training and developing the people who help you in the growth of your business.
Tracking Your Activities
So, track your time and activities over a few days, or a week to get a general idea of how you are truly spending your time.
The reason why the PJ's Productivity Model is colored is to make it simple to track on your calendar.
You're not going to write down every little exact thing you did. You are simply going to mark a chunk of time with a color. It's best to get some highlighters to do this easily and correctly.
If you are thinking you don't have the time to do this activity, immediately go back to the top of this blog and start reading again.
If you are thinking that you've done something like this before or this is too corny to do and it's beneath you, that's your problem. Good luck continuing to scramble around in your day to day and enjoy the roller coaster ride you call your income.
Once you have a few days of your activities tracked, you will start to get a clear reality check of how you are spending your time.
If you see any... I repeat any Useless Activities on your schedule, immediately eliminate them.
If you see a lot of Urgent Activities popping up over and over, work on controlling your environment and schedule. Make sure you are getting your High Dollar Producing Activities scheduled first and are following through on them.
If you see yourself doing a lot of Low Dollar Producing Activities, and you can't afford to outsource or hire, determine if they absolutely, completely 100% need to be done. For example, a Member of one of my programs identified that he was spending 4-5 hours a week on twitter, when he combined looking for articles to share, reading them and then actually being on twitter. He eliminated this activity and believe it or not, his business did not suffer from not being on twitter all that time. It actually improved.
Increasing your productivity = increasing your sales
If you want to grow your business, focus on being more productive.
Get great at marketing and conversion
Last but not least, the other important piece to this trifecta of business growth...
Get great at marketing and lead conversion.
The Persinger Business Development Philosophy is: Marketing for leads, prospecting for appointments.
In today's "internet - Do NOT Call List - social media - people seeking out 10.4 sources of information before deciding - world it seems crazy to try Cold Calling as a means of lead generation.
Instead of Cold Calling for leads, you should be getting really good at marketing, to bring the leads to you and then picking up the phone to prospect for appointments.
If you hate picking up the phone to call random people because you're expected to have "X" number of conversations a day, let me tell you a story about how I started my #real estate sales career.
I was the first in to the office in the morning.
I would look up expireds every day.
I would search through the phone book, later on whitepages.com to find phone numbers.
I made countless of calls.
Lots of no answers. Voice mails. And hangups.
It was gruelling.
It was humbling.
A nice way to say it would be that it was character building.
Don't get me wrong, I had success.
But I had to keep showing up. Day in. Day out.
I basically had a high paying telemarketing job.
Once I started to understand business and marketing at a higher level, I started to understand the power of Direct Response Marketing and #Copywriting.
When I say marketing, what I mean is Direct Response Marketing and Copywriting. Developing this skill is truly the first piece of leverage you can add and should add to your business.
You don't have to pick up the phone and call strangers that are on the Do NOT Call list every day. You don't have to deal with all that rejection. You really don't.
Stop being a glorified telemarketer.
Start being the advisor, consultant and Approachable Resource you are and bring the leads to you.
Save your will power for picking up the phone to call all these leads you generate from your marketing or capture on your website to schedule an appointment.
A word about offline marketing: if you think that direct mail is too expensive, it's because you are doing it wrong. You are most likely doing branding and not focused on Direct Response. Direct Response is about having a clear concise message with a compelling call to action. These are things that I worked with my coaching clients on and I do for the associates at Persinger Group.
A few words on LEAD CONVERSION: There are two ways to convert leads to appointments. Writing great emails (that comes back to your copywriting) and picking up the phone. That's it. Your lead conversion should be early and often. According to the NAR 2012 Buyer & Seller Report, we know that 66% of Buyers and 65% of Sellers will work with the first agent they talk to. So the objective in your lead conversion is simple. Be the first agent they talk to.
That’s it. It’s not hard. It just comes down to priorities, speed of implementation and taking action.
Common questions and objections
“But I just want to make more money, I don’t care if I have to work more hours.”
Good for you. I admire your gusto. The reality still exists, you only get 24 hours in day just like any of us. Do NOT worry about just making more money. Work on making the same amount of money, doing the same amount of transactions, generating as many leads, referrals appointments as you do now in a significantly shorter time. Once you are doing that, go ahead and put more time in on the High Dollar Producing Activities and increase your hours to the amount you are ok with. The money will follow.
“But I don’t want to do that time management crap or your direct marketing junk, so I’m gonna do _____ instead.”
Awesome, go for it. Give it a month, and see what your numbers do. If your leads are increasing, it looks like you are going to start making more money, it will be consistent and you are happy with the hours you are working, keep on trucking. If not, give the stuff above a shot for a month and see how things go.
“I’m a part-time agent, can I sell more?”
Absolutely. You just need to make sure you’re still time blocking the High Dollar Producing Activities as often as you can. Finding enough time in your week to prospect and lead generate is your biggest challenge. So the PJ's Business Development Philosophy of Marketing for Leads will work better for you anyways. You do face the problem of "#be first" with your lead conversion though. But candidly, I wouldn't sweat it too much. Your competition is almost certainly going to drop the ball or be incredibly slow in their follow-up. So go for it!
“Should I focus generating buyer leads or seller leads?"
If you want to make more money and control your time better, focus on seller leads. When you lead with listings, the listings lead to more leads anyways. For more on Seller Leads, let's talk.
“Do I need to prospect on the phone 3 hours a day?”
Nope. Remember the PG's Biz Dev Philosophy,"Marketing for leads, prospecting for appointments". The TOTAL hours you spend on the phone each day is going to be in direct correlation to how many leads your marketing is generating and the size of your sphere. Now, if your marketing is generating so many leads that you COULD spend 3 hours a day on the phone trying to schedule appointments with leads, that's a different story. Most of my coaching clients conduct their lead conversion calls and sphere calls in a segment of 96 minutes that I call Focus 96.
"I'm already a Top Producer - what's different for me to go to the next level?
Take a look at your time tracker exercise you did. I've yet to work with any agent, no matter the production level that is not doing some Useless and Urgent Activities. Eliminate those immediately. Next, take a look at how much time you are spending in your Impact zone. It's great that you are probably spending a huge majority of time in High Dollar Producing, but chances are, you're spending little, if any time working on Impact Activities. Make a shift to that so you can bring in agents, or marketing coordinators, or lead coordinators to do your High Dollar Producing Activities for you now.
This section is from Lisa Archer, a client who has had tremendous success with growing her business.
18 months ago I said the dumbest thing in the world to Darin. I said I have too many leads to handle. Now, I run a team of over 20 agents and we are still growing. We have written 164 offers in last 3 weeks. Where would I be without him? Likely still showing every night, every weekend and not enjoying my family. I thank God for my big mouth and for coaching with Darin.”
Darin is a KICK ASS coach, motivator and a genius.
Yes, he has a mind that is incredible.
I feel that Darin is vested in my success both personally and professionally. He is a dear friend and I am excited we are now partners.
- Lisa Archer
CEO/Broker at Team Ludlow Realty
Co-Founder of The Geeky Girls
No matter what you chose, to follow my Philosophy or another coach, the key is to get your mindset right by not fearing success, prioritize the right activities and develop and enhance your direct response marketing, copywriting and lead conversion skills. Stop worrying about the small details, the technology or the apps and just make sure you are making progress.
How Else I Can Help
This is a beast of an article, and your head probably hurts at this point, but I want to make one last point.
Most people would rather debate what they think they know instead of implementing what it is they do know. People also love to debate minutiae.
Ramit Sethi writes on his blog, Iwillteachyoutoberich.com:
If you’re below the age of 125, you have heard people saying one of more of these phrases about losing weight:
Don’t eat before you go to bed because fat doesn’t burn as efficiently
If you cut your carb intake and raise your protein level, you can lose lots of weight quickly
If you eat fruit in the morning, it’s easy on your digestive system and your metabolism will speed up
I always laugh at these things because they’re so absurd. Maybe they’re correct, or maybe not, but that’s not really the point.
The point is that we love to debate minutiae.
We love to debate details at the completely wrong level of analysis.
When it comes to weight loss, 99.99% of people only need to know 2 things: Eat healthier and exercise more. Only Olympic athletes need to know more.
I see this happening more and more with real estate when it comes to things like social media, lead generation, lead conversion, website platforms and ROI.
People want to debate the minutiae of it all. I don’t.
I want productivity.
I don’t want to hear opinions or guesses or theory.
I want to see people implement and get results.
Increase Productivity - Stop debating minutiae
As Ramit puts it,“…we feel like we really expressed ourselves, and it’s a good feeling. The problem is that the feeling is totally illusory when it comes to getting anything done.”
Sounds to me like the opposite of being a Productivity Junkie who wants to grow their business.
- Darin Persinger
PS: Yes, I cover a lot of stuff in this Beginners Guide To Selling More Homes, however, if you want more, if you want to go deeper with the PG's Philosophies or get accountability, let's grab a coffee or beer.
0:32 Do you want more referrals?
0:41 Referrals and introductions are a transference of knowing, liking and trust
1:28 The phrase you need to stop using to get more referrals from your sphere
1:44 The problem of using this phrase
1:54 An example of using this phrase the problem it causes
2:32 What you need to do to #start#getting referrals and keep getting referrals
I'm not that interested in Superman... All of his powers make him kinda unfun.
But Batman, he doesn't have any super powers.
He's not an alien from another planet. He doesn't have any mutant gene. He didn't get into an accident with gamma radiation or a magical spider.
He's just a dude that is smart, tough and uses his resources really well.
Batman is basically the alternative to Superman.
Superman has all sorts of powers.
Batman has none.
Superman is an alien.
Batman is just human.
Superman can fly.
Batman has to drive a car.
Superman doesn't wear a mask.
Batman does wear a mask.
I feel you can do the same in #your business. Become the alternative version of what's going on out there.
I've read that Sam Walton once said, "Swim upstream. Go the other way. Ignore the conventional wisdom. If everybody is #doing it one way, there’s a good chance you can find your niche by going exactly in the opposite direction."
A lot of coaches and trainers teach how to make prospecting calls... how to do presentations... how to handle objections... scripts to use... etc...
There is nothing wrong with this at all... but what if you took the alternative approach? What if you became "Batman" instead of trying to be "Superman"? And that's more the style I coach and train.
Create really compelling #direct response marketing... develop #copywriting skills... get good at email marketing... develop reports, whitepapers and video marketing that informs, educates, informs and entertains...
My alternative philosophy is if you do things that way... you don't have to handle all the objections... you don't have to master 20 different closing techniques... you don't have to develop the super power of handling rejection for 3 hours a day...
Plus, you can be seen more as a resource vs a salesperson.
I look at my wife. Katherine has never made an expired or FSBO call in her life, yet has generated 15 Seller Leads in the last 45 days via #direct mail and Facebook ads.
She might not be a "Superman", that's ok.
Because she is the alternative, like "Batman".
Which character are you going to be in your #business?
Stay Productive | Keep Focused | Be Consistent
-- Darin "Michael Keaton Is Still My Favorite Batman" Persinger
In college, R.A. was an Academic All-American and won the College World Series with the Tennessee Vols.
This led him to pitching for the US Olympic team and won a bronze medal. Not bad.
Then in 1996 he was drafted by the Texas Rangers and offered a $810,000 signing bonus!!!
Dream coming true!!!
But nightmare soon followed...
A team doctor noticed in one of the Olympic photos that R.A. was holding his arm "funny." They did tests and xrays to make sure they were protecting their investment
What they found was R.A. was missing his ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow joint. They withdrew their original offer and dropped it to $75,000.
R.A. took the offer to keep his dream alive.
R.A. bounced around the minor leagues until eventually making it up to the Majors in 2001.
He did OK, but not great during his Major League career and eventually got sent back down to the minors.
This is when R.A. reinvented himself. He became a knuckleball pitcher. A knuckleball is a #pitch that has little to no rotation on the ball causing it to "dance" and "float" making it very difficult for batters to hit. (A bit more on the science in a moment)
R.A. eventually mastered the pitch and found his way back into the major leagues after a few more years in the minors.
He found his place with the New York Mets. In 2012, Dickey became the first major leaguer in 24 years to throw consecutive one-hitters. He was also selected to the All-Star team and he won the Cy Young award.
At the age of 38, R.A. is finally, truly living his dream, after many ups and downs, setbacks and struggles.
He now plays for the Toronto Bluejays where he signed a two-year, $25-million extension with a club option for a third year in 2016 at $12 million.
The knuckleball is a mystery. It's a mystery to the pitcher, they don't know where it's going to go.
It's a mystery to the catcher, they're not sure how to catch it.
It's a mystery to the #batter, they swing and look like fools.
Pete Rose said about the knuckleball, "Trying to hit that thing is a miserable way to make a living."
But scientists aren't convinced.
For example, Professor Alan M. Nathan did an extensive study on the knuckleball. Studied video, researched data and compared knuckleball pitches against normal pitches and said the knuckleball flies on the same trajectory as any other pitch. The difference is so slight, 0.3 inches, that it's hardly worth noting.
Now you have the science that tells you that a knuckleball doesn't "dance" or "zig zag".
And then you have the batters trying to hit the ball that tell you that it bounces all over the place.
Who is right?
Two thoughts On This...
1. Who cares about the science? Perception is reality. The person trying to hit the ball says it's "dancing" then it means it is dancing.
This is what you have to realize with your marketing. The science, the data, the ideas, don't mean jack.
What matters is your target market and their feelings and emotions and their perception.
2. Maybe the science is right. And that a small change, even 0.3 inches can have a drastic impact on things.
-- Darin "I can make a whiffle ball dance all over the place" Persinger
I was in North Carolina this week. Working with a client and her team in office. Yes, I make "house calls."
I was a bit nervous about the trip, as I am with any trip because that means Pearl #the French Bulldog is left with my wife Katherine.
When I'm around... I feed Pearl... I take Pearl out... I take her on "W's... I play with Pearl... I play hide n seek with her... we wrestle... I gave her belly rubs, etc.
Do you have any pets?
I don't know about your pets, but Pearl demands to be fed daily, get some attention from me and some play time.
She needs food and to be nurtured.
I probably could experiment with the idea of just dumping a bunch of food on the kitchen floor and see what happens, but I don't think that is a very good idea.
Pearl might not know when to stop eating and people would probably accuse me of neglect and abuse.
So, I think it's pretty important that Pearl gets fed daily, gets some love and some nurturing daily.
Are you feeding your business daily?
And by your business, I mean your database #aka contact management system aka #client relationship manager aka "databank".It seems silly to picture me dumping a bunch of food on the floor for Pearl, doesn't it?
It is also pretty silly that many salespeople and business owners treat their business the same way.
You don't consistently, daily, feed your database, so you don't have a consistent flow of leads, appointments and sales coming in.
You can't just feed your database once in awhile.
You can't starve your database and then take it to a buffet for an "All-You- Can-Eat."
You have to feed your database consistently, daily.
Are you nurturing your database?
Just like Pearl needs attention, affection and nurturing, so does your database.
I can't just take Pearl for a walk twice a year. I can't ignore her for 360 days of the year and still expect her to be a well behaved, adjusted, friendly dog.
How often are you giving attention to your database? How often are you in communication with them? How are you nurturing your relationships with those people in your database?
-- Darin "I have on a camouflage Duck Commander t-shirt and a North Carolina Tar heels cap" Persinger
PS > If you want help with growing your database daily with a "Strategic Lead Generator Plan" and nurturing it with a "Keep-in-Touch Strategy" there are 4 Things You Can Do Next...
If you are on my Email List, the other day you heard about how a 1 to 1 coaching client of mine easily spotted a huge faux pas in the #copywriting on a website...
Some people emailed me and asked me to tell them more about copywriting and had some questions...
A. As I said in that #email, I'll be sharing the answer in the PJ's Monthly Insider. To share with non-Members would not be fair to all the Members.
It wouldn't be fair to you either. If you don't have to invest to learn it, you won't value it.
The Members of PJ's Monthly Insider value the info and implement. Like John C., a Member who implemented a Lead Conversion tactic from the Apri Issue and increased his newsletter email open rate to 49%.
I could share that tip with anyone for free, and you probably wouldn't implement. And not implementing it means no results. You don't want that, and I don't want that.
Q. I'm looking to #hire a copywriter, to write some of my email marketing for me. If you wouldn't mind sharing with me, who writes your emails for you?
A. Me. I write my stuff.
Q. What do you mean just because someone can write, doesn't mean they are a copywriter? What's the difference?
A. To quote Judith Charles, "A copywriter is a salesperson behind a typewriter."
If it doesn't sell, or at least generate a lead, convert a lead or get the prospect to take action... it ain't #copy.
Pretty words that flow nicely together, that give you a tingly feeling, or entertain you or amuse you... but fail to make the sale... ain't copy.
I write all my own copy, see Q & A above... but if I was to hire someone to write copy for me, I'd ask, "Have you ever sold something to someone face to face? Have you ever sold something to someone over the phone?"
If the answer is "No" to either question, I wouldn't hire them to write my copy. "A copywriter is a salesperson behind a typewriter." If they can't sell face to face or over the phone, what makes you think they can sell in only written words.
Why Copywriting Is So Important Today
Copywriting has never been as important as it is now in today’s business world, in today’s #real estate landscape.
Because of all the ways you are communicating via #written word. And copywriting is basically sales. It’s sales in print. It’s sales via written word.
Think about all the ways you communicate via written word now...
every tweet that you send out,
every Facebook message that you send out,
your text messages,
the blog post that you’re writing
the email follow up you send
the property description you write
It’s not just sales-letters, postcards or print advertising.
It’s all these ways that you communicate online, which many of the ways you are communicating is via the written word.
All of these ways of communicating have the potential to influence and persuade someone.
The question is, are you influencing and persuading people effectively?
And that’s what copywriting is about. You have to develop a skill-set of #effective copywriting to be successful and effective in business today and in to the future.
At the very least, you need a Copywriting 101 skill-set. That way, if you are looking to hire someone to write copy for you, you can recognize the good from the bad.
-- Darin Persinger
P.S. The rule or formula that you should be following is in full force in this article...
Go back and re-read this email and see if you can spot it.
This morning during a 1 to 1 coaching call, I showed a client a website.
The website is from a Vendor in the real estate space that sells different services.
I asked my clients what they thought.
"Oh this bad. This is all wrong," was my client's response.
What they were responding to was the #copywriting on the website.
This was coming from someone that didn't know what copywriting was when we first started working together. I don't think they even knew what the word "copywriting" meant.
The problem was... one of the services this vendor was offering was copywriting, content marketing and email marketing.
Gratefully, my client was smart enough to immediately recognize what was wrong, and if this vendor doesn't know how to effectively write copy on their own website, even though they offer these services, my client knows not to hire them.
You don't need to be the master of everything, but you need to have a 101 knowledge of the things that impact your business...
... Or you'll be making some bad decisions and investments.
Let me explain a bit more...
I've worked with restaurants, bars, chiropractors, even childcare services...
When I'm working with companies like this... I can and will do their marketing for them. They don't need to understand marketing at in depth level, because they are not in the business of marketing.
Sure, they need to market their product, service and business. But their business is not marketing.
If you are a real estate agent, you are in the business of marketing.
What is a Seller hiring you for, if not for your marketing and ability to sell?
If you abdicate your marketing (which includes copywriting) to someone else, what exactly is your value proposition to a seller.
Hear me closely here...
I'm not saying you can't outsource or leverage it out, but you must have a #basic 101 knowledge base, so you outsource and leverage it to the right person.
My client certainly has 101 knowledge base of copywriting and could recognize the most basic, simple, fundamental mistake in copywriting.
This is the thing that my #1 to 1 client immediately recognized as being done wrong on this Vendor's website.
Once you understand this #basic rule of copywriting (and it's probably the #1 mistake you are making with your copy) not only are you going to be able to transform your blog posts, #landing pages, email marketing, sales letters and postcards...
But you are going to be able to recognize, when looking for services, if a copywriter/marketer is skilled or not.
-- Darin Persinger
P.S. I've seen a lot of Expired and FSBO sales letter that are not following this basic rule...
Just because someone can write, or even claims to be a copywriter... doesn't mean they are a copywriter.
Be careful out there.
PPS. Would you like me to come talk with you about this 1 Rule?
The Quest: Storytelling Marketing That Entertains, Informs and Generates You More Business
The Quest makes your marketing more effective… If you’ve ever said “I need to get my name out there…” you are spending waaaaaay tooooo much money on your marketing… and it’s going to take waaaaaaay tooooo long for that method to work.
The Quest gives you the secret to “Look at Me Branding” vs “I See You Marketing”…
… What the science fiction alien race Na’vi can teach you about Marketing
… And… the 30,000 year old secret to marketing
(This can be delivered as 30 minute, 90 minute, Half Day or Full Day Workshop)
When the new Nike CEO was named, Steve Jobs called him to congratulate him.
The Nike CEO asked, "Do you have any advice for me Steve?"
Steve responded, "No. You will do great!"
There was a pause and Steve continued...
"Nike makes some of the best product in the world. Product that you lust after. Absolutely beautiful, stunning product. But you also make a lot of crap. Get rid of the crappy stuff and focus on the good stuff."
Get Rid Of The Crappy Stuff
What do you need to edit out of your business and world?
What do you need to stop doing?
What do you need to quit?
What do you need to not even start?
It is easy to get sidetracked and distracted in this world of information and ideas, but remember, that those things don't pay the bills.
Implementation of the right things is what gets rewarded.
Implementation of the impactful things.
It's a simple marketing and productivity tip, it's just not easy. Get rid of the crappy stuff.
What would you do with advice like this from Steve Jobs, "Get rid of the crappy stuff and focus on the good stuff."
-- Darin "helping you get rid of the crappy stuff"Persinger
Lotsa #blog training... blog services... blog software... setup your blog for you services... popping up the last few years.
A company called HubSpot coined the term Inbound marketing.
They define Inbound Marketing as based on the concept of earning the attention of prospects, making yourself easy to be found and drawing customers to your website by producing content customers value.
So lemme make that simple for ya...
Put good stuff out in the world and leads will come to you.
Let's take a little look at the NAR 2012 Member Profile shall we...
NAR states "The typical Realtor earned 19% of their business from past clients and customers and 20% to referrals from past clients and customers."
So about 40% right?
When it comes to websites the report says, "Members typically brought in 4 inquiries and 3% of their business from their website."
That's in a year.
4 inquiries and 3% of their business... which by the way...
The report stated the typical agent did 10 transactions in 2011.
Do you know what 3% of 10 is?
Not even 1 transaction.
So your website and Inbound Marketing is supposed to be the greatest gift to you and the consumer, right?
They just get to lurk around and soak up your info and reach out when they are ready... Good will to go around...
I feel 2013 is the time to get back to some good ol' fashion Original Inbound Marketing... which by the way is how so many of 1 to 1 clients and Levels Coaching Members are getting the results they are getting.
"Just a side note, I am really impressed by your coaching. You offer a much better way to focus your time for the best results. I reorganized my database as you recommended and started working on my ______________. Since starting the training, I have received two new referrals, both in the $700,000 to $900,000 price range. There was no selling because they felt I was their trusted consultant." - Bill B.
IF... you are wondering about some of the phrases I was tossing out today... for example...
Website Marketing Strategy
Lead Conversation Starter System
Get Introduced System
AND... You want to prioritize the biggest pay off activities in your business and build assets that continue to give you a return on your dollar and time invested...