Agent2Agent in Fort Worth>Question Details

Eric Phillips, Home Owner in Fort Worth, TX

What are the best known ways of gaining new clients as a Realtor that is new to the business?

Asked by Eric Phillips, Fort Worth, TX Tue Jul 10, 2012

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BEST ANSWER
Eric,
Your profile indicates you are a home owner and not a real estate professional.
That suggests you are considering the opportunities real estate offers to those who have the focus and COMMITMENT to make this work. IT additionally suggest you are AVOIDING the cause of 95% of newly licensed agents never seeing their 2nd year anniversary. You have identified by your question the most important part of surviving in the real estate business....lead generation. That IS 85% of the business.

Expectations
Do a bit of research regarding your intended market.
How many residences?
How may homes sold last year?
How many each month?
What percentage of homes are sold each month. Here in my area of Florida that percentage is currently 1%. You and EVERY agent in your region is competing for the same 1%. The good news is most are using a "Buying? Selling? Call Jelly Bean" in their messages. You will of course create better copy than that. (you will need to generate 20 qualified leads for every one that results in income.)

Now, you need to decide, "What do you have the most of, Time or Money?" This will determine if you do the grip-n-grin or pay for access to advertising outlets. Most will choose a hybrid with very little GNG and mostly paid advertising. The closer to GNG you are, the better the opportunity to snag the 90 day market.

In decreasing order of immediate income potential are groups you must consider.

Group D
You must go where the people are. If they are on Trulia/Zillow/Facebook/Twit/Pinetrest..be there, with a message.

Group C
You must go where the people are. If they are at Starbucks,,be there...Farmers market..be there. At show..be there. Little league games...be there, with a message.

Group B
Do you have a vertical market? Any special connection with a significant group of people. For instance if you were formerly in the healthcare business, you very likely have a database of contacts. Let's not forget those folks you went to school with. The running club, origami class and investor or business networking groups all provide opportunities. Identify the ones you have access to and arrive with a message that is relevant to a concern they have or a need they can fill..be specific. The right home combined with the right strategy will make open houses a great place to meet folks who have real estate on their mind. (important note: 31% of home buyer purchased a home that a friend or family member told them about. ....think about that)

Group A
These are friends and family. If you have not burned these bridges with previous MLM opportunities, you must keep them informed and intentionally engaged in building your enterprise.

When you have prioritized the groups you want to communicate with, you will need to put on your writing hat. The 12 step sales letter is the perfect place to START.
How will you reach them?
What appeal will you use?
What problem do they have?
How will you help the solve that problem?

IT is very likely to little league mom will have a different set of problems than the origami retiree.
Put on your writing hat.
Create a 'knock your socks off' letter or flyer or banner or Google ad or ad-words or placement ad or sponsored ad or any media through you choose to use...with a irresistible call to action. There are some really great E-books available that shed light on these efforts.

Lastly, you need to have a good end game. Develop a plan to encourage your referral network to respond in the way you want. (encourage good behavior) You will find in 10 years 80% of your business will be from 10 sources or less. This is the outcome of a great end game.

Now, you've got to ask yourself, "What do you have?"
Create the collateral you will need to open the portal of access to the groups you identify. Every family faces FIVE big decision every year! That would be a great place to start in creating your collateral.

Best of Success to You,
Annette Lawrence, Broker/Associate
Remax Realec Group, Palm Harbor, FL
727.420.4041 - http://www.RealEstateMadeEZ.us
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 11, 2012
It is evident that you have done research or received training in marketing/sales techniques. This is by far the best answer to the question and the type of answer I was looking for. Making money is of course one of the reasons to do anything in life. However, giving people what they want gives you what you want. That should be a new home/ buyer for their home.
Thank you!
EP
Flag Wed Jul 11, 2012
Eric, I just want to reiterate that listing for 4.5% has bought me much success in my first year of being a Realtor. The leverage of value leads to listings that generate leads off of your signs and thus earn you more money. I appreciate the leads my broker sends to me, but those earn me 50% rather than the 90% of the commission that I get when they are my own leads. I love being a "listing lord" because the leads I get off my signs are my leads on my turf and on my time and get me much more money. I have also been able to represent both sides as an intermediary and that got me a whole lot more money. If interested, give me a call and I will explain the benefits of my broker's program. By the way, I just have to pay my broker $25/month for the 90% commission, but have the option of paying $0 for 70% commission. Don't go with the big guys and pay $100s or more for nothing but lip service and "limp leads"!!!! Call me at 817-729-6630
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 11, 2012
I agree with these other agents all sellers are looking for a deal to sell their homes be flexable with your commissions 4.5% commission is one way of getting listings. However remember one think always give the buyer agent 3% or the home will never sell.

You can buy leads example trulia or other website that sell leads but be sure you sign up with a good lead provider.

You can also work with a broker that gives you leads to his or her agents and if you cannot find one let me know I can help you I am a Broker.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 11, 2012
Stay as far away from your sphere of influence as you can for your first year. Don't get sucked into that career-killing abyss - I'm serious.
Any moron can call people they already know and pitch their services. But think about it. Anyone who knows you also knows you are new to the business. If you needed real estate services, would you work with a seasoned professional or would you cross your fingers and hope a rookie doesn't screw up the largest investment of your life? The safe play is to go with a seasoned professional - so why would you expect your friends and family to do otherwise? And let's say someone you know does give you a chance and you hit a bump in the road on a transaction - and we all do regardless of our training and experience - how long will it take until ALL your friends and family know that you had "a situation"? Word travels fast among friends and family and now you nat have poisoned the pond for any future business from your sphere.
But here's another strong reason to start marketing to strangers first: survival skills. Let's say you do get a few deals from friends and fools, ooops - I mean family. You get to eat steak for awhile and you keep up the payments on your Bentley. Then one day your finite pool of contacts no longer produces income for you. What do you do then? You've been coasting and now you have to face the stark reality that you have to compete against some very good agents to earn a steady flow of business. This is where many agents turn to cheese, why you see so many drop out after their first year and end up in careers that require a hair net, a name tag and the ability to say "would you like fries with that?" with enthusiasm. They entered the business full of youthful spirit and energy, but didn't have the marketing skills to acquire new business and maintain their momentum. If they had started marketing like a grown-up right out of the gate, at the end of their first year they would have developed skills that would provide a steady and profitable flow of business for a career.
So, here's what I recommend:
1) Create an image that differentiates you from the masses
2) Find either a geographical or property-type niche
3) Partner with a MENTOR, not a TRAINER
4) Get involved in the community in a way that highlights your skills and gives something back
5) Write down a business plan that states what you're going to do and how you're going to do it - be answerable to the man in the mirror
6) Have fun
That's all, bye-bye.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 11, 2012
You just made a great point. Started my career and lived off referals for years. Then it happened! I did not stay on top of prospecting for new business. All of your advice should be taken seriously for anyone getting in to this business.
Flag Wed Jul 11, 2012
George, seriously???

you are "advising" a new agent that in order to build business, he should find a broker that will allow him to list homes at 4.5% (leverage?)?

That's your starting point for advice - that's your emphasis?

Regardless of the commission he may charge - and remember,legally, all commissions are negotiable - - he first needs to find buyers and sellers to work with.......if he goes to an appointment and the only thing he offers is XX% - he is running on empty!

Work in a company that will offer training and mentoring........do not select a company because they give you carte blanche as far as what commission you may charge - that is irrelevant at thsi time in your career.

Hone your skills - learn how to work/communitcate with people and fill their needs - know your inventory..........the list goes on and on......what you may or may not ultimately charge as a commission (IMO) is way at the bottom of the list (if it's there at all).

Best wishes.........
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 11, 2012
Get familiar with the area you service, maybe do some mailing with your listings or your office listings to introduce yourself to your clients.
Get the addresses from Public Records, that may be worth for you.
Usually from 200 mailings you could get 4 calls that can lead into 1 potential buyer or seller.
TRY IT OUT, see how it works in your area
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 11, 2012
Strategic open houses. Yes other agents will tell you it is a waste of time, that is somewhat true if you do what everyone else does. If you spend 10 times as much time promoting it as you do hosting it will be a gold mine.

Jim Simms
NMLS # 6395
JSimms@cmcloans.com
Financing Kentucky One Home at a Time
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 11, 2012
You must be really new because I don't see a license for you yet in TREC.

If you want to work smart and hard - call me. You won't have to worry much about "how" to get business because you are new. You will need to determine what day of the week you want to be off - if possible. Worry about how to market to your new "Past Client" list for when things slow down later.

My requirements are: Ethical - Detail Oriented - Willing to Learn - Willing to Work. I am very short handed at this time and need 1-3 buyer reps asap. My biggest concern is burn out right now.

You can learn about retaining business and growing your book of business now. Farming for business using Meet & Greets and word of mouth is so much easier when you are already producing.

Elwanna McEuen
Capital Real Estate
Broker
Cell 817-449-8079
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Jul 10, 2012
Eric, best wishes to you if you do move forward and become a Realtor.

I am encouraged that you chose a Best Answer that offered you solid and worthwhile advice.

By dong so, imo, you have already shown a desire to elevate yourself to a higher level, and that's what this business needs to improve our image with the public !

Good luck!

ps Jim, unless I am misunderstanding what you said.........I am sure you mean well, but advising a future agent to hold simultaneous/multiple open houses, and have the SELLERS sitting there as you run from one to the other is terrible "advice" , and just plain wrong.

Yes, you will "stand out" - you will stand out as an agent who isn't covering their own open houses, and left the owners in charge!
If an agent needs to schedule multiple open houses on the same day, for whatever reason, you need to have another agent covering for you.
Sellers are hiring YOU to oversee all aspects of their home's marketing. It's not their responsibility to sit on their own open house...and it's not even good business.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jul 12, 2012
Create a database for your sphere of influence, they are the people closest to you that can give you referrals. These people can be friends, family, doctor, dentist, etc. Send something of value to them on a monthly basis, this will position you as a resource for good information. It also acts a subtle reminder, most people don't instinctually refer unfortunately.

Chris
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jul 12, 2012
I agree with Jim somewhat. Why sell yourself short. If you become known as a discount REALTOR then your clientele will care more about what you charge over how good your service is. You'll only be as good as the lowest price and that's easy to beat.

Create value for your services in your first contact to keep a loyal client to be. A price shopper is rarely loyal regardless of a buyer rep agreement. Who needs em.

Volume clients need to prove they are volume clients. Every weekend investor genius out there promises volume.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jul 12, 2012
I don’t like lowering the commission on listings unless it is a bulk contract. It may bring more listings but why work harder for less?

I can trace my success to watching what all of the other loan officers did and then run as fast as possible in the opposite direction. Find a niche, if I were just starting out as a realtor I would charge at least what my biggest competitor charges if not more. Then look at the local market and slice out a niche. Example, if it is a buyer’s market that would make listings drag on, so I would work trades. I would team up with my clients in joint marketing efforts, put together a marketing plan that does the opposite of the other agents around me.

Earlier, I said open houses are great if done properly, work with your sellers and have multiple open houses on the same day at the same time. Can’t be 2 places at once? Have the sellers hold them open and you travel to them all, WHAT???? I said I would do something other agents would never do or would think crazy. Stand out.

You might find some ideas on my blog, I linked it below, good luck,

Jim Simms

NMLS # 6395
JSimms@cmcloans.com
Financing Kentucky One Home at a Time
Web Reference: http://jamessimms.com/
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jul 12, 2012
Now that's valuable advice, and I have one comment in response to it..........

OY
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 11, 2012
I agree with John below. Find a mentor not a trainer. Don't waste your money on "scrips" etc.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 11, 2012
Also if you are a new agent you may thing of joining Keller Williams!
They provide you with comprehensive training, follow latest technology, and support you whenever you need their help,
Very nice and pleasant atmosphere.
If you would need more info on that feel free for reach out to me 347-564-4832.
Thank You
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 11, 2012
I wish you success in your new career. Team up with a broker that let's you leverage 4.5% listing commission. That is value to people and I've listed several properties via such leverage. If interested, give me a call at 817-729-6630.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 11, 2012
I agree with Jim. I've done a lot of open houses when business is slow.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 11, 2012
Prospect.....prospect....prospect....call, call call.....
Call your friends, family, co-workers.
Then call other people you know and who trust you.
Then call FSBO and Expireds.

We'd like to talk to you if you dont have your license and haven' t selected a broker yet.

Check out http://worldclasscareer.com/
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jul 10, 2012
Bruce Lynn, Real Estate Pro in Coppell, TX
MVP'08
Contact
"Meeting your needs and exceeding your dreams!"

Eric, perhaps we could get together for lunch sometime I would love the opportunity to help you out in any which way. I through myself in the public eyes alot, open house, meet n greets, public events anything to get your name out there.

Keller Williams Realty
3xUS Army Vet/Real Estate Consultant
Joseph Fernandez
cell: 817-975-7258
off: 817-635-1157
website: http://www.blissful-estates.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jul 10, 2012
Talk to people!
Be friendly - but mean it!

Gently work your "sphere of influence"......I don't mean attack people at a party or on line at the bank, but let them know what you do...............gently......and you'd be surprised how well that can work.

One of my first listings was the home of the cashier at the local grocery store - I always said hi and chatted with her - even before I became an agent.......but mentioned it once I was actively working ....she said she was thinking of selling her home....asked me to come over....and voila - I got a new listing!

Got a lot of business over the years via having my nails or hair done!!~!

I am currently going through physical therapy for a broken arm (fell at an open hose!).anyway, I am now working with my therapist's sister, helping her buy her first home.

See..............You never know!

Being active on trulia helps, too.......just make sure you hone your skills, and give correct advice!!

Good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jul 10, 2012
Blogging works.
It isn't a Silver Bullet.... But it helps build a brand.
I would also suggest partnering up(team) to help jump start the career.

I do blog coaching.
Let me know if you would like to chat about that.

Tom Burris
Mortgage Banker
DallasLoanGuy.com
(214) 763-4629 cell/text/nights/weekends(Really!!)
tomburris@dallasloanguy.com
Lending all across the entire Great State of Texas!!
NMLS# 335055
Search Dallas area MLS for FREE. No registration => http://www.ntreisinnovia.net/cgi-ntr/BR_login?0501134
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jul 10, 2012
Matter of your sales skills. Did you establish a business plan PRIOR to becoming a Realtor ?

Lynn911 Dallas Realtor & Consultant, Credit Repair Advisor
Multimillion Dollar Sales Producer
972-699-9111
http://www.lynn911.com

Follow me on Facebook
http://www.facebook.com/lynn911dallas
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jul 10, 2012
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