Are you running a “me-too” commodity real estate practice? Do your prospects and clients see you as just another ripple in the sea of agents out there?
You might think otherwise…but if you’re like 96% of all agents, the answer is (sadly)…YES! And that’s a HUGE problem for you.
The $64 thousand dollar question you should be asking yourself in every situation is…
Why Should Anyone Do Business with Me…Above Any and
All Other Options…Including Working with Other Agents,
Going it Alone (FSBO), Or Doing Nothing at All?
Today we begin the FIRST of seven “House List Cultivation Systems” – systems for building a continuous, ever-growing production and income in real estate.
By implementing today’s system, you’ll move yourself from an “also-ran” agent, to an agent who is perceived as uniquely and positively DIFFERENT from every other agent out there.
And when you truly differentiate yourself from other agents, you begin to achieve Market Dominance…and real estate becomes the fantastically profitable and thrilling business you’ve always dreamed about.
The system you’re going to learn today relates to your product and service definition and standards. I call it the…
“WOW Your Client™” System
If you’ve been following my articles, you know I “preach” that the single greatest way to differentiate yourself from other agents is to have a deep relationship with your clients and House List.
A deep relationship is the highest level of differentiation – making you stand-out above the rest.
But there’s another part of the formula, and it applies especially when you don’t have a House List developed to its full potential.
See…if you don’t first have a competent, unique and “heads-and-tails-above-the-rest” professional service…people won’t see you as any different from the next agent…and will have absolutely no meaningful reason to work with you and only you.
That’s why discount brokers have propagated like “cockroaches in a dirty kitchen” in our business – when people perceive value as equal, they negotiate price.
Wouldn’t you do the same as a consumer?
The truth is, you don’t have a “price” problem with discount brokers, you have…
A VALUE Problem!
Ross Perot once said, “The Devil is in The Details”…and it’s in the “details” of your services that you begin to differentiate yourself.
To begin this article, I want you to answer the question…
What Do You Do SO WELL and SO UNIQUE in the
Delivery of Your Services That People Can’t Resist
Raving About You and Your Services to Others?
Read that question again – it’s important. Now ask yourself, isn’t that a great way to stimulate referrals, word of mouth and repeat business in your practice?
After all…what others say about you is 10,000 times more influential than what you say about yourself.
Real estate is an “ordinary” business – with few barriers to entry and loads of competition all looking the same. Your job is to operate your “ordinary” business in an “extraordinary” way so you’re seen as positively different in your marketplace.
And that’s what we’re going to detail in this article.
Our “Wowing Your Clients™” system is actually comprised of THREE smaller systems you want to implement into your business (remember how we talked about systems in article 15?)…
If you’re a “mediocre” commodity agent, your “service” is comprised of: 1) offering CMA’s, 2) listing homes, and 3) working with buyers.
But if you’re an EXCEPTIONAL agent…you don’t give CMA’s, you give “Maximum Home Value Audits™ – where your professional evaluation uncovers opportunities to get top dollar for your clients and sell in the least market time.
And you don’t simply “list” homes…you implement your “28 Step Home Marketing System™” – designed to sell homes for maximum price in minimum time with the least inconvenience and hassles to your clients.
And you don’t just “work with buyers” – you implement your “Platinum Home Buyers Program™” uniquely designed to scour the market for the perfectly-matched home, uncover hidden bargains (before other buyers learn about them), and secure preferred financing for your buyers.
Do you see the difference here?
What I’m talking about is a marketing technique called…
Naming Your Process™
Naming your process™ is more than a “name.” It’s how you detail the services you provide to your clients. After all…if you don’t explain everything you do to earn your commission, how will anyone know your value?
What happens when you start Naming Your Processes?
How do you start Naming Your Processes™ and Productizing yourself?
It’s quite easy.
First, simply list out ALL the things you do for your clients for your various services. Take out a pen and a piece of paper and start listing every little detail you accomplish for your clients.
Second, create a “Benefit-Rich” name to what you do. What do I mean by “Benefit-Rich”?
Think about what your service will DO for your client. Benefits include: 1) Getting more money for their home, 2) selling faster, 3) avoiding hassles, 4) minimizing crime, etc, etc.
When you get out of your skin and into the skin of your clients, and ask yourself “what’s in it for me”, you change your orientation from “you” to “THEM.”
And that makes all the difference in the world.
And third, make sure you copyright your name so no other agents can use it. For your purposes all you need to do is use a common law copyright by placing the following on your promotional pieces: Copyright © 2006, Jane Realtor. All Rights Reserved.
Here’s an outline of what a “28-Steps Home Marketing Plan” might look like (yours might be 21 steps, or 32 steps, or whatever you come up with).
By the way, don’t just take this sample like some “lazy” agents do – spend a little time and create something unique to you and you alone. If you use a Talking House, web site, or Hotline system, make sure you include all your marketing features as well.
Here’s an example of a “28-Step Top Dollar Home Marketing Plan”…
My “28-Step Top Dollar Home Marketing Plan ”…
Marketing Plan Elements: You can present as numbers, or steps. These are examples, customize for your own practice.
You can learn more about “productizing” yourself more by reading Laurie Kaye’s article about her 3-Steps Marketing System at www.AgentInnerCircle.com.
If I asked you this question: “First Impressions Are ( ) Impressions,” what would your answer be?
Did you say: “First Impressions are LASTING Impressions”?
Well, if you did, you’d be HALF right (I’ll talk about the other half in a future article).
I suppose you’ve probably heard of that saying. Problem is, 96% either don’t use it, OR don’t understand the “psychology” around creating such a strong FIRST impression that you create Clients for Life™.
Here’s an example to drive home my point…
A number of agents have told me this idea increased their listing presentation closings to over 95% AND helped to create clients for life. I originally learned it from an agent friend who closed over $37 million in homes several years ago.
Here’s what she told me…
“I’ve got a secret weapon I use to close 95% of my listing presentations. And by using this ONE strategy I NEVER lose a listing to another agent, PLUS it’s been one of the most effective ways of creating “clients for life.”
Naturally curious, I asked her to explain.
“When I show up for my listing meeting, I carry a simple coffee mug filled with Hershey’s kisses or some other chocolate treat. I had it made by calling one of those marketing specialty companies you can find in the yellow pages.”
She continued: “Now, that’s no big deal of course. But what’s written on the mug is…
On one side of the mug, I’ve written boldly: ‘SUSAN IS MY REALTOR’ and a big red heart. And on the other side, I simply put my phone number, but an agent could add their email or web site address or any other information if they want.”
Did you catch what she was doing?
At first sight it seems like an obvious little gift. And one of the “secrets” I’ve learned in business is:
You Make the GREATEST Impact When a Gift is
Given When Least Expected (Like giving a gift
At the beginning of the relationship)
But that’s not the only thing going on here. You have to think even deeper.
FIRST, she is subconsciously telling her prospects who they should select as their agent. She’s directly telling them who they should use. Believe it or not, very few agents are this confident, and that makes a tremendous difference.
SECOND, she just gave them a gift, which naturally MAKES THEM FEEL OBLIGATED TO RECIPROCATE, and as they munch on those chocolate treats day after day they keep thinking of her.
And THIRD, you should see the look on other agent’s faces while they’re trying to give a listing presentation sitting in front of a coffee mug staring them in the face, filled with Hershey’s kisses that says…
“SUSAN IS MY REALTOR”
The result? She closes over 95% of her presentations. But there’s something even more remarkable you should know.
Since using this strategy, her new client and referral results from using Service For Life!® (yes, she’s a subscriber) have exploded!
Because she’s created such a strong RELATIONSHIP with her clients up front, they know and welcome all communication that comes from her. She’s maximizing her “Personal Market Share™” from the outset of the relationship.
And when she brings them even more welcomed value by sending Service For Life!® each month people feel naturally compelled to do business with her, refer their friends and family, and make her the ONLY agent they think of when they think “real estate.”
Think about how you begin your relationships with clients. When you create the right “first impression” you solidify the relationship – no commission reduction negotiations; no discount brokers; no whining and complaining (assuming you’re doing your job!).
This system is quick and easy. Do you know the single greatest complaint clients have with agents?
A few years back I read a survey by the NAR on client satisfaction, and the ONE area where clients have the greatest problem with agents is…
Communication, Follow-up and Feedback
So when it comes to providing “exceptional” delivery of your services, you had better get your communication straight – right up front.
How do you do this?
By implementing a CONTACT MANAGEMENT SYSTEM that allows you to follow-up regularly – this way you’re being pro-active with your clients and heading off problems before they become serious.
Getting your “communication” right with listings means you’ll be seen as more competent…and you’ll have less problem getting price reductions when you can show actual feedback and comments from visiting agents and prospects.
Exceptional Service Delivery™ Systems don’t need to be big and complex.
For example, a buyer’s agent I know asks her clients what kinds of snacks and drinks they like – then she gets a nice cooler and loads it with their favorite drinks and snacks and puts it in her car for them to use while showing homes.
It not only sets her apart with the gesture, but when your buyers are nourished and hydrated, they’ll be in a better “buying mood.”
Doesn’t that make sense?
Creating Exceptional Service Deliver is simple once you ask yourself the question…
What Can I Do to Bring More VALUE, More CONVENIENCE
And More Unique SERVICE to My Clients
Each Step of the Transaction?
Answer that question on a regular basis – continually improve your services and your “productization” – and you’ll be on the road to an amazingly profitable and thrilling real estate business.
If you find yourself flopping on listing presentations…losing sales to discount brokers…or finding your buyers migrating to other agents…this article will be the most important information you’ve ever received for your real estate practice.
You can start “WOWing” your clients by getting the three systems you learned here into your practice. Don’t be afraid to use your own personal creativity – you don’t want it all “done for you” because you need to be unique with your services.
So take from the examples I gave you above…look at what other agents are doing to productize themselves…tear out articles from real estate publications you read – and use them to create your own UNIQUE product.
Start “productizing” your services and start naming your processes. Then, at the beginning of each new relationship, show up with a unique, personal and meaningful gift. And examine your Service Delivery Systems for ways to bring more value, convenience and service to your clients.
Oh…I wanted to share ONE FINAL THOUGHT with you. I read a quote the other day that said…
“You’ll Rarely Regret the Things You DID in Your Life, But
You Will ALWAYS Regret the Things You DID NOT Do”
Don’t regret that you never reached your potential in real estate. Don’t regret the deals you lost…the competitors who dominated markets ahead of you…or the promises to yourself you never fulfilled.
And, most importantly, don’t regret that you never “gave it your all.”
If you’re NOT currently subscribed to Service For Life!®, visit the website at http://www.serviceforlife.com/, or call my office at (800) 622-2540 and talk to one of our helpful staff – we’re some of the nicest folks you’ll ever meet.
I’m confident…using Service For Life!® will significantly improve your business and your life. Best of all, it’s ALL DONE FOR YOU!
What do you do to create regular, welcomed and value-oriented CONTACT with your house list, target farms, and hot leads?
If you’re like most agents who commit to regular contact…you probably send out a recipe card, post card or some “canned” newsletter or “market update” of active, pending and sold homes – and it works “mediocre” at best.
And if you’re like the other 90% of agents – you send NOTHING – the surest way to continued struggle, depressed income, and never achieving stability in this business.
Whatever category you fall into…in Article 17 I’m going to share with you amazing “secrets” for putting in place a regular contact system that brings an on-going rush of new clients, referrals and repeat business.
I’m serious – we’ll talk about secrets that took me almost 30 years to perfect: from correct content, how to deliver contact, psychology that causes engagement, relationship and response, and how to motivate hungry prospects to CALL YOU from your contact.
DO NOT miss Article 17 – your entire career could hinge on it (OK, so maybe not your entire career, but I promise it’ll open your eyes and put dollars in your pocket!).
Keep an eye out for Article 17 coming soon…