For Real Estate Sales Professionals

January 20, 2003 E-zine

January 20, 2003


























Over 30,000 Subscribers

Always be determined to become the
best real estate agent in your territory!

In this Issue:

1. Become Proactive in Developing Your Business

2. Enhancing the Effectiveness of Your Real Estate Portfolio

1. Become Proactive in Developing Your Business

One of the biggest mistakes that real estate agents make is becoming reactive instead of proactive while working in their day-to-day real estate businesses. While you may have the best of intentions of doing what will have you stay focused and producing outstanding results, so many things cry out to you every single day in your business trying to take you off track from producing the income and results that you know you deserve. And if you don't watch out you can end up becoming extremely reactive in your real estate business while this is happening.

Three of the greatest distractions that take you off track in your real estate business are your office telephone, your cell phone, and your pager. Whenever you are always available on the receiving end of these you risk wasting a lot of your productive time. This is because you are constantly faced with many people each and every day who will contact you at any given moment in time regarding things that really don't need your immediate attention in your business. 

To illustrate this point there was a highly-successful agent that I worked with years ago named Jeff who had just returned to our office from a business trip to New York. Upon his return I asked him how the trip went for him. He responded by saying, "Great! Absolutely great! I love a city where when you walk out of a building and try to go left but the flow of the crowd takes you to the right instead and there's absolutely nothing you can do about it!"

Keeping this in mind the following can happen to you if you're not careful in your real estate business:

You have the best of intentions of being productive during the day. You know what needs to be done in order for you to have a productive day but so many people keep contacting you with requests that have little or nothing whatsoever to do with what you know needs to get done. It's very similar to what Jeff said about New York. You have a goal and a direction you want to move in but so many people are distracting you and taking you off track. What you need in these situations is to become more of a master of your own time.

When you answer every single call that comes into your office and cell phone immediately you risk letting everyone else control your time, your business, and your life. This is also true when you feel compelled to immediately respond to any pages you receive even though it would be better for your effectiveness in your business to respond sometime later in the day. Keeping this in mind what's important for you to accomplish in all of your communications with your clients and prospects is to respond quickly to the situations that are important to accomplish your business goals while making sure that everyone you are doing business with feels that you are doing a good job of taking care of their needs. So for some of those people who call you insisting that you drop everything you are doing to take care of their needs right now you will want to learn how to effectively communicate to them in a way that allows you to take care of their needs in a time frame that works for both them as well as you. For oftentimes in this business people will call you insisting that something needs to be done immediately in a transaction when the truth is it that what they are asking for doesn't really need to be handled for hours or sometimes even days in order to still keep the transaction moving ahead smoothly.

So many of the calls that you receive everyday do not involve matters that have to be handled immediately. And you as an agent have to have a good intuitive sense about what needs to be handled now, and what can wait until later. The real estate business is not the stock market or the commodities trading business. Unless you are in a situation where you are negotiating in competition with others for a listing or a transaction, rarely do requests from clients and prospects truly have to be dealt with in a matter of minutes to ensure that the transaction will continue moving ahead appropriately.

Keeping this in mind you need to make sure that you're getting everything done each day, week, and month that will propel you towards having the kind of year that you want to have. This must be your first priority rather than always being available for whoever decides to contact you at any given moment during the day. If you don't make this your priority you will probably then feel that you're always extremely busy but you're not accomplishing the goals that you want to accomplish.

So become a master of managing your own time. Know which activities need to be done right now and which ones can wait. Understand that sometimes it's OK to let calls go into voicemail instead of answering them when there are important things for you to get done. You can always immediately check voicemail messages and decide if they need your immediate attention...or not.

Follow the old expression that says, "Plan your work and work your plan." Make sure first of all that you get everything done each and every day that you know will lead to achieving the success that you desire. If you don't take control of your time and your business no one else is going to do it for you.

When you learn how to proactively accomplish the goals you set for yourself every day, week, and month while also following-up excellently with your your clients and prospects, you will be well on your way to having exactly the kind of year you want to have in your real estate business.

2. Enhancing the Effectiveness of Your Real Estate Portfolio

Do you have a portfolio of real estate transactions you've completed to show to your clients and prospects whenever you feel it's appropriate? If you don't it will probably be a great idea for you to put a portfolio together and have it available for marketing and in-person presentations.

When people are deciding which real estate agent to work with it's helpful for them to know your track record in having successfully completed similar real estate transactions with others. When you have a portfolio available for people to look at this helps them to feel that you know what you're doing as an agent and that you will do a good job of representing them on their upcoming real estate transaction also.

You can assemble your portfolio in a binder or you can assemble it to be delivered and viewed electronically also. Either way you will want each page to represent one single transaction that you have successfully completed for one of your clients. Have a nice color photo of the property on each page as well as the address of the property and the pertinent details about the physical aspects of the property. You probably will want to leave off the dollar amount that was paid for the transaction for a number of different reasons. One of these reasons is because as your prospect is looking at each page they may not feel great thinking that you could similarly be disclosing financial information that they consider private about their upcoming transaction to other people in the area in the coming weeks and months ahead. Another reason is because the longer you are in the business the more the property values in your territory will change. You don't want people looking at your portfolio reading transaction amounts that have no relevance to today's market. This can serve to invalidate the relevancy of your portfolio as your prospects are looking at it.

Now to increase the effectiveness of your portfolio something that you will also want to do is include a quote on each page from the clients that you represented during that particular transaction. Make this quote very visible and prominently displayed on the page and mention the name or names of the people who gave you the testimonial. Adding a quote like this to each transaction in your portfolio is a very important addition for you to include.

When you are soliciting prospects for business everything you say and do is constantly being evaluated by them. These people are trying to determine if YOU are someone they should be doing business with. They are about to make one of the biggest financial decisions of their lives and they need to know that you are someone who they can trust to assist them with the process of making this decision. When these people are looking at your portfolio without any quotes from your clients they are simply looking at the physical details of properties that you have successfully closed transactions on. This can definitely be helpful to them in knowing that you are capable of successfully completing a transaction with them. However, when you add individual quotes from the people you represented on each of the transactions in your portfolio you are now adding a much more powerful dynamic to the experience of a prospect looking at your portfolio. When your prospects read these quotes they are now connecting with the wonderful experience that the other people had through working with you. This is much more powerful than simply having your prospects see that you have successfully completed transactions on properties in the past.

What your prospects are really looking to determine is what the experience of having you represent them in a real estate transaction will be like. And there is no better measure of this than what other people who have worked with you have to say about you. So when you add great quotes from people to each property displayed in your portfolio your prospects are then getting a more complete experience of how good it will be to work with you. This will sink in more and more with them as they turn each page in the portfolio, see the photo and information on each transaction you've completed, and read the praise about you from the people you represented in the transaction. By the time they have looked at each and every page in your portfolio they may very likely conclude that you are the best choice that they could ever make in a real estate agent.

Keep in mind that what is causing this to happen is the combination of the individual quotes on each page with the photo and information about the property itself. This causes your prospects to be completely immersed in each transaction in the portfolio along with the praise that you received from the people you represented. This then has your prospects feel that if they immerse themselves in a transaction with you that they will very likely have great things to say about you also. However, you will substantially weaken the effect if you instead have a separate section of testimonials in your portfolio and not include the quotes on each individual page along with the photo and property information that relates to it.

So what do you do if you already have a lot of transactions that you've already completed but you've never obtained quotes about the service you provided from the people you represented in these transactions? Well, this could be a great opportunity for you to get back in contact with these people once again. It may be time for you to reconnect with a number of these people and see if they have any new real estate needs at this time. When you talk with them tell them that you're assembling a portfolio of real estate transactions that you've successfully completed and that you're obtaining quotes from everyone you've represented about their experience of working with you as their agent. Ask them if it would be OK for you to submit three potential quotes to them about you and have them select the one that best describes their experience of working with you. This allows you to write the quotes exactly as you would like them to appear and eliminates the possibility of your clients giving you quotes that, while being well-intentioned, are rather bland for your marketing purposes. Also, when people have three different quotes to choose from they are much more likely to find at least one of the quotes acceptable to them as compared with if you only submitted one quote to them for their approval.

Whenever you feel it is appropriate you may consider taking your clients out to lunch or dinner also in conjunction with obtaining your quotes from them. Socializing with your clients is a great way to solidify your relationship with them and in this case it's also a great way to show your appreciation to them for assisting you with your marketing. It's also a great time to ask them for referrals, too.

And of course for transactions that you will be closing in the future it will be a great idea for you to obtain quotes from your clients about their experience in working with you immediately after the transaction has completed. This is when they are most likely to be in the peak emotional state of associating great qualities with you.

In summary, when working with new prospects they want to know that you are someone who will do a great job of representing them in their upcoming real estate transaction. Showing these people a portfolio of your past real estate transactions together with quotes from the people you represented on these transactions is an extremely powerful way to have your prospects conclude that you are the best choice that they could ever make in a real estate agent.

Click here to visit my Web site. There you'll find many articles and previous editions of my E-zine to assist you in taking your real estate career to the next level.

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Coldwell Banker

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Advanced Real Estate Sales Coaching
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