In from the cold

An obligation of any real estate team is to provide a pathway to move leads from cold to warm.

As an industry we are extraordinarily focussed on – and talented at – dealing with leads when they’re hot. In fact I would argue that the majority of industry training is directly pointed at that end of the spectrum.

It’s imperative that you find yourself in a business that is supportive at the other end – the cold. For the journey that is rewarded the most is the one that brings the leads in from the cold.

Treat your business like a butcher

I found myself in a butcher on Saturday morning, which is not unusual. But on this visit I stood back and watched how the butcher handled his customers; his intimate knowledge of his product, and most importantly, how he addressed every customer by their first name and asked how their family was.

What does a butcher have to do with real estate?

Firstly, independent butchers are up against two massive conglomerates: Woolworths and Coles, and yet through outstanding customer service and unbelievable product knowledge they are able to withstand price cutting at its greatest.

There’s so much talk about commissions being challenged around the country. It may well pay to go and hangout at your local butcher, because the good ones have not only survived, they’ve thrived against the fierce competition of Woolies and Coles.

At this time when you’re looking to kick start your year, remember, we could all do worse than model our business on the thriving butcher.

And I’ll see you at Richie’s this Australia Day.

Who controls the energy?

So often agents pick up a piece of stock that’s been on the market for a long time and sell it quickly.

All that’s happened in these scenarios is a change of energy.

When a property is listed, do we allow our vendors to control our energy? Think about how you act when you feel your vendor is motivated as opposed to when you feel they’re not.

Then ask yourself who really controls the energy?

The same result

In the past 18 months somewhere in the vicinity of 12-15 homes have sold in the street in which I live.

Even in a conservative frame of mind, $300,000-$400,000 has been earned in commission. Yet, every home – except on one occasion – has been sold by different agents.

Not one agent phoned me, nor door knocked me, nor advised me of these sales.

What this reinforces is the old saying, if everyone does the same thing, you end up with the same result. You see, none of the agents did anything and they all ended up with the same result.

It takes two to tango

Every Sunday I see social media posts about how the auctioneers sold 5 out of 5, sold 10 from 10. The one question I would ask all auctioneers of the world is: how many properties would you have sold under the hammer if the agent hadn’t provided you with bidders?

I think we all need to understand there’s a lot of hard work done by agents that provides the platform for auctioneers. When it comes to auctions, it takes two to tango.

Fishing line decorations

Every year I get Christmas cards from people I have spoken to maybe once or twice in my life.

For some reason they think this card is going to build a relationship with me. I can’t help but wonder if these people spend an hour generically signing their name and send these card out in bulk.

If you’re someone who sends Christmas cards every year in the hope that you will miraculously build relationships, then you need to understand that all these cards do is hang on fishing line between the curtains.

Customers for life

Many years ago the term ‘customers for life’ was bandied about the industry as if it was going to save the world.

In a past blog I discussed the need to have a marathon runners attitude when so many agents approach real estate with a sprinters mindset. The greatest challenge I can give you is to go and knock on the doors of the homes that you sold between two and three years ago.

So many agents have very little contact with the owners of these homes. If you do this exercise, 99 per cent will tell you they’re not selling because they assume that the only reason you could be contacting them is to try and make more money.

These people could so easily have been – with some structure and process – a customer for life.

Call me Mark

Last weekend I attended an open for inspection and while I was there I gave my name and my address to the agent. In fact I only live 50 metres from the open home and the agent even acknowledged I was a home owner in the street.

Yet two days later I received a letter from this agent to my home addressing me as “the home owner”.

All I ever wanted to be called was Mark. You see, the best way to build a relationship is to actually call someone by their name.