Our company, Watson Realty, won the Diamond Award at the Leading RE conference held last week in Miami Beach at the beautiful Fontainebleau!
This award is handed out each year to the member company that excels as a leader within the 500 plus top real estate member offices.
Through our membership, our agents are able to assist anyone seeking to buy or sell a home anywhere in the world!
Pictured with us are Mr. William Watson Jr., founder or Watson Realty Corp., Carlotta Landschoot, Executive Vice President.
Unfortunately, holding open houses as a method of selling a home or prospecting for new buyers or sellers, has went the way of dinosaurs for many real estate agents. For those agents who still understand the power of using open houses to grow your business, here is a little tip that I was reminded of.
I had the opportunity to sit at an open house this past weekend. The listing agent explained to me that we would need to get an early start prepping for our open house because she wanted to place several directional signs. The fact that she used 10 directional signs was impressive enough but then she went a step further and attached helium filled balloons to these signs. It is my opinion that few agents use balloons to attract attention to their signs.
They should start.
We had at least 20 visitors during our 3 hour open house. Several new relationships were started and the seller ended up receiving an offer from buyers who visited the open house without their agent. The little extra step of using the balloons was noticed by the community builder rep who, stopped in and thanked us for putting out balloons!
Were we successful just because of the balloons? Of course not, but I do believe those little extra steps increase an agents overall success.
Are you ready to get on track to sell millions of dollars of real estate each year? You can reach your production and income goals simply by following the example of top producing agents that have started before you.
First, let me be clear. There are no secrets to success. There are no systems or programs that require 0 effort on your part to succeed. Just being positive without positive effort, won’t work.
Having a business plan, implementing the business plan, consistently working your business plan and adjusting or adding to your business plan as you go forward, is the path to success.
As a new agent or an agent with no production, your plan needs to include aggressive prospecting and marketing that put you in front of potential buyers and sellers daily. It can be as simple as handing our 5 business cards a day to someone new. You need to have conversations about real estate in your market area with as many people as possible.
Don’t spend hours a day thinking of ways to succeed, when the answer is in your daily routine. Throughout the day you are crossing paths with people, it is what you do and say when your paths cross that will make all the difference in your career.
Remember, consistency is the key!
How to get listings; Start with people you do know
By now I hope that at least a couple of you have made your way through my post below and are eager to get started on a business plan to get more listings. You are probably ready to call people you know. Here is a brief script you might want to use as your own when calling people from your sphere of influence. Make the changes so it feels right to you. This is centered towards getting short sale listings. More scripts and suggestions to follow.
(First engage in genuine friendly conversation and then on to asking for a referral without saying the word referral.)
John as you are aware, these have been stressful times for many homeowners. My business over the past several years has been in helping people who are upside down on their mortgage but need to sell their home. I have helped them with a process called short selling. This is a detailed and lengthy process that allows the owner to sell their home without having to pay off the entire mortgage they owe. I know there are many people who are not aware of this process and my goal is to reach out to them as best I can, so let me ask you John, is there anyone that you know that could benefit from my services?
Benefit from my services. You want people, especially people that make up your sphere of influence, to view you as someone that provides a service. It is true that our job involves us taking on the role of sales people but the truly successful agents year after year understand that it is the legendary quality service they provide that is one of the secrets to ongoing success.
During a normal real estate market, listings have always been the cornerstone for success for Realtors. Today’s market is a normal market so we should be concentrating on increasing our listing inventory. The way to obtain listings in a normal market has not changed over the years. Successful listing agents use a variety of methods. In order for any method or system to be successful, consistency is the key and crucial.
In your area listings can be obtained if you consistently;
call expired listings, call sellers in need of short selling; canvassing neighborhoods by foot, mail or phone; direct mail campaigns to absentee owners, just listed cards, just sold cards, offers of free CMA, calling your past customers, calling your COI for referrals, asking the sign or floor call if they have a house to sale, open houses and over the long term – develop farm areas.
You have to be consistent! You have to be consistent! You have to be consistent!
Watson Realty Corp. agents now have their very own mobile home search apps that can be used by their customers to search for homes in Kissimmee and the Orlando area. The home buyer wants access at their fingertips and our agents now have a tool the customer can use on their phone.
This is going to be a very good year for many of us that list and sell real estate in the Orlando and Kissimmee area. I am excited about the activity I am seeing and hearing about daily! It is obvious to me that many agents are concentrating on the right activities that will increase their market share and grow their business! They are to be applauded for keeping focused on doing the right things to succeed over and over.
How about you? Are you having the kind of success you were expecting? Perhaps you are a newer agent or maybe a seasoned agent and your business has stalled. Now is the time to regain focus and ask yourself if you are concentrating on the right activities that will help you succeed! You have an open invitation to meet with me at your convenience to examine what you have been doing so far and to discuss what you might want to start doing in order to increase your business.
So what are theses “right activities”? In order to get back on the fast track to success, those activities should include the following.
• The first activity you should be working on is in creating a data base of people you know. After you have your lists complete, you will need to decide how you will be contacting them on a regular basis. Who will you call? Who will receive a letter? Who will receive an email? A postcard? A text? A personal visit?
• Another of the “first” activities should be making sure you have a follow-up system in place where you can add your new contacts from floor, open houses, and neighborhood visits. Scraps of paper with numbers and names in your car’s ashtray or scattered across your desk is not a good follow-up system. It is important early on to invest in a contact management solution or use a system similar to what my office provides out agents.
• Spend as much time as you can to learn the systems that will provide fast results. Short range activities are encouraged. Training that is geared towards prospecting for listings, sales and outgoing referrals should be considered before learning how to grow a farm area for example.
• Meet people, meet people and then when you are not sure what do to do…meet people. Sitting in the office waiting for people to meet you works only if you are on floor. Network constantly, knock on doors, and hold open houses, visit builders, visit apartment communities and so on.
For focused dedicated real estate professionals the business is out there. Area buying and selling customers’ need your skill and expertise to assist them with the often complicated real estate process today’s market involves.
Why is it that some real estate agents struggle year after year unsure where their next lead is coming from while others seems to have an endless supply of business? There are a variety of reasons of course but none more important that an agent’s ability to prospect and stay in touch with their customer base and center of influence. Don’t be the agent that is always trying to reinvent the wheel before learning how to use the wheel that is already in existence.
“The only way to predict the future is to create it.”
I do not recall who said this but that is exactly what your using a contact management system will help you do with your business. By keeping in regular contact with everyone you know or have come in contact with, you will be creating future business!
My company has provided an easy to use system that is designed to help our agents succeed. We ask that our agents take advantage of it! For those who have not been using the system nor are not sure how to start, we have a tech trainer that provides individual assistance to get them started.
I have ask all floor agents to set up their contact management accounts as soon as possible in order to qualify for floor duty. I feel that strongly about the power of this tool. At our last sales meeting I heard from 3 of our top agents about the power of using the system!
Real estate agents need to have and use a contact management system if they are determined to outlast and outsell the competition.
At our recent sales meeting we shared our thoughts on where the next transaction or sale will come from. The list contains a lot of familiar avenues to success that real estate agents have used for years.
1. Floor time
4. Company website
Face to Face
1. Open houses
2. Door knocking
4. Area Events
8. Social Groups
1. Call FSBO
2. Call expired
3. Call COI
4. Call past customers
5. Cold calling
6. Warm calling
7. Call asset managers
1. Just listed cards
2. Just sold cards
3. CMA offers
4. Investor letters
5. Congratulation cards
6. Thank you cards/letters
7. Market reports
8. Absentee owners
9. Overseas owners
1. Personal website
3. Watson Connect
7. Misc. listing portals
1. Local paper
2. International publications
3. Real estate magazines
4. American Lifestyle Magazine
We have a goal as an office of 1 outgoing referral from each of our agents during 2012. It would seem to be an easy goal to hit, since we are only asking for 1 outgoing referral but like many real estate agents, sometimes we get so busy listing new property or closing our transactions that we sometimes forget to ask the people we know if they know of someone wanting to buy or sell a home outside of our market area.
I would imagine most of us have a family member or friends that live outside of the State of Florida or outside whatever State you do business in. Those people would be our center of influence to help us pick up at least 1 referral for all of 2012. Additionally your sellers may be moving out of our area, which should be one of the first questions asked when taking the listing, where are you moving to?
A qualified referral equals great service to your friend or family member since you can make sure they are connected to a top producing agent located in the area your friend or family members are interested and you will get paid!
Please join with me in helping us reach our goal, which by the way will help us reach our individual goals of making more money this year.