Selecting A Farm Area

Real estate is very territorial. Having a license to sell real estate in Alabama permits one to sell anywhere in the state but common sense tells us we can’t provide quality service from one end of the state to the other. A person can have license in multiple states but that doesn’t mean they can provide quality service from their home town. I live in an area that only a few miles separate Florida, Alabama and Mississippi. Some people hold a license in each of those states. You can’t sufficiently service a county, not even a city within a county.

Farming Works

I am referring to a territory that a sales person will work within the boundary. This is considered their farm. Let’s narrow the field and focus on real estate sales. Farming is an older and more complete term for prospecting for new clients to work with. A few years ago the term “Prospecting” was replaced with the term “Lead Generating.” These two terms don’t encompass near as much as “Farming.”

Real estate is very territorial. Having a license to sell real estate in Alabama permits one to sell anywhere in the state but common sense tells us we can’t provide quality service from one end of the state to the other. A person can have license in multiple states but that doesn’t mean they can provide quality service from their home town. I live in an area that only a few miles separate Florida, Alabama and Mississippi. Some people hold a license in each of those states. You can’t sufficiently service a county, not even a city within a county.

If a person really wants to be successful in selling real estate, they should select an area of a city, or a subdivision to be their territory. They are going to farm this territory by focusing all their efforts on this territory much like an agricultural farmer tends to his crops. When concentrating on a small area, one can make it a priority to learn everything about that particular area. [Read more…]

How Is Your Prototype Working?

Is This A Prototype?

Is This A Prototype?

Prototype is a word that is not used much with the general population. Contrarily it is used daily in the manufacturing industry. As an example let’s take a thermal coffee cup and see how it came into being. Somebody had an idea about putting a cup inside another cup while leaving a little space between the walls of the two cups. Theoretically it would insulate the contents of the cup, keeping it either hot or cold. The insulation would prevent the cup from sweating when the contents are contrasting temperatures. The new features would make it more desirable which would increase sales. The cup would sell at a higher price improving profits. At this point it is only an idea; a theory that will make money when mass produced.

The first cup has to be hand-made. Two separate cups of the appropriate sizes will probably be turned on a wood lathe and then a handle applied later. The finished product is used to shape a mold that is made from a material that will be user friendly to the material of finished product. Molds are wooden, clay, metals, plastics, earthen soil, waxes and other materials. Once the mold is smoothed and fits properly, it is ready to use. [Read more…]

How to Get Your Clients to Call You

First it is imperative to have a complete consultation with a new prospective client as soon as you meet them. You are possibly entering into a business relationship so both parties need to know what to expect from the other party. You both need to know the preferred method for communicating and make sure each has the others cell phone number. If you wish to represent a person in buying a new home, you really need to know more than the basic number of bedrooms and the amount they want to invest. Both the agent and the buyer need to know how the other person feels about certain things. This has to happen before there is any semblance of trust which is necessary to have a lasting relationship.

Is she Calling You or Your Competition?

It is an eerie feeling when you have requested a prospective home buyer to return your call or to respond to your email and you don’t hear a word from them. What are you supposed to think? I can tell you from my experience that many thoughts run through your mind. You might wonder where they are, why haven’t they called, did I do or say something to offend them, are they talking with another agent, are they trying to go around me to save a commission? These are very legitimate thoughts because you don’t know these people and they don’t know you. You may have only spoken to them one time and then, for whatever reason, can’t seem to connect with them again.

Let’s evaluate our previous conversation with that particular prospective client. Exactly how easy did you make it for them to remember your name? Did you give them a business card or was that one of the prospects that you told you were out of cards? Did you give everyone, husband and wife, parents or friends, a business card or did you just hand one to the man. Did you have a meaningful consultation with the prospect so they fully understood the buying process?  Let’s look at a few ways to make it easier for our prospects to remember us and to contact us.

First it is imperative to have a complete consultation with a new prospective client as soon as you meet them. You are possibly entering into a business relationship so both parties need to know what to expect from the other party. [Read more…]

Pride of Ownership

You have a beautiful home!

You have a beautiful home!

Most people have some sense of pride in some or all aspects of their daily activities. Because of my religious upbringing, the passage in the bible referring to pride comes to mind.  I John 2:16 says, “For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.” I want us to examine pride of ownership as it relates to sales; specifically to real estate sales.

First let’s look at the important role that pride plays into a successful automobile sale. Auto sales people play on your pride from the time you drive on their lot. Why do we need all the extras; if it were not for pride? What if you went to an automobile dealership and told them you wanted to pay cash for a new car and the only extra you wanted was [Read more…]

If the Parrot Can….You Can!

Sales people, too often, do little things or say things that are in poor taste; they are annoying to a prospective customer. The consumer doesn’t honor you by telling you what you have said or done that was offensive to them. They just say nothing and you never hear from them again. At this point the sales person has a tendency to wonder what was wrong with the consumer. Why did they choose to use someone else? I didn’t do anything wrong. They must be weird or something.

Pay Attention to What You Say and Do

John received a parrot as a gift. The parrot had a bad attitude and an even worse vocabulary. Every word out of the bird’s mouth was rude, obnoxious, and laced with profanity. John tried and tried to change the bird’s attitude by consistently saying only polite words and playing soft music.

Finally, John was fed up and he yelled at the parrot. The parrot yelled back. John shook the parrot and the parrot got angrier and even ruder. In desperation, John threw up his hands, grabbed the bird and put him in the freezer. For a few minutes the parrot squawked and kicked and screamed. Then there was total quiet. Not a peep was heard for over a minute.

Fearing that he’d seriously injured the parrot, John quickly opened the door, and the parrot calmly stepped out onto John’s outstretched finger. He said, “I believe I may have offended you with my rude language and actions. I’m sincerely remorseful for my inappropriate transgressions and I fully intend to do everything I can to correct my rude and unforgivable behavior.” [Read more…]

Who Needs A Personal Coach and For How Long?

One On One Coaching

One On One Coaching

It is imperative that you understand we are referring to people whose career is in sales. With that in mind, this is the simplest question I ever have to answer. Since this is a two part question, I will first focus on who needs a coach. Everyone who aspires to reach a higher level of excellence should have a coach. All professional business people that is sincere about growing their business. Any individual who truly desires to excel in anything they choose to do; whether in sports, work, religion, or anything that is measurable; they need a personal coach.

Part two of the question can probably be best answered with one word; forever! I don’t mean for this to sound offensive, and if it happens to offend anyone, please forgive me for I don’t know of any other way to state it. It seems that only the already successful people comprehend the concept of personalized coaching. [Read more…]

Internet is Hurting the Buying Public

Our job is to protect the consumer!

Our job is to protect the consumer!

I’m sure a lot of people will disagree with my topic statement. Hopefully you’ll take time to read it and then I think you’ll agree with me; at least in part. According to the National Association of Realtors most recent studies, close to 95% of real estate buyers search the Internet to find property for sale. In some cases, by doing so, buyers are more familiar with what’s on the market then the agent at the time the buyer contacts the agent. In some cases the buyer tries to buy a property directly from the seller, rather than using the services of a real estate agent, and this is potentially harmful to the buyer. For anyone buying real estate in Alabama, Arkansas and Virginia, it is especially dangerous because of Caveat Emptor. State laws, in these states, place all the responsibility on a buyer could cost the buyer a lot, financially, after the sale has closed. Without talking with an agent in those states, the buyer would never know about the laws that could affect them and it could cause them to have no legal recourse should a serious issue arise. [Read more…]

Friendships—Key to Success in Sales

It's Worth The Effort

It’s Worth The Effort

Friends are so special. I can’t imagine what life would be like if I had no friends. Given my personality and my need for friends, I’m not sure I could even survive without having lots of friends. One might say I’m using the term “friends” very loosely; and I suppose I am. I call people that I know fairly well, friends. I refer to people that I go to church with as friends. I refer to people I work around as friends. These people that I call friends are not people that I have in my home for dinner. For the most part I don’t associate with them outside the area for which we commonly come in contact with each other. In reality these people I call friends are actually acquaintances.

I have been fortunate to have strong enough feelings for a few people to consider them my best friends. Naturally these best friends came at different times in my life. When I’m teaching time management, I teach people that there can only be one most important thing that needs to be done in a specific time frame. The next most important thing becomes the second, third, and etc most important. Therefore we can only have one best friend. All other friends are at a lower level. I consider best friends to share a special unconditional love, respect, and forgiveness for each other. Always supporting each other through the good times and the bad times. I have considered someone as my best friend and for some reason, the friendship deteriorated. I suppose I misread the friendship or maybe I had more affection for them than they had for me. I personally think that people are lucky to have one real best friend during an entire life-time. Only time and endurance can determine the real depth of a friendship. [Read more…]

Handling Fear of Rejection

Get Over The Fear of Calling Strangers

Get Over The Fear of Calling Strangers

Fear of rejection is probably the most common disease associated with sales people. No I didn’t make a slip of the tongue. I consider fear of rejection a very deadly disease to a sales career. Fear hits a person at a very early age and if uncontested, it becomes cancerous; to the point it is such a large obstacle, it appears totally impossible to bypass. I can tell you first hand that this type of fear is real and from the onset seems insurmountable.

Let me give you a real life example of me having fear of rejection. When I got into real estate in February 1969, everything was altogether different than it is today. I don’t think the term “lead generation” had been devised at that time. Sales seminars were few and far between, and I might add, miles and miles apart. However, every seminar that I attended, the main technique taught to generate new prospective clients was simplified by using the term “Prospecting.” For the next 25 years or so, I blocked three hours every day for just prospecting.

One of the ways of prospecting was a term called “Door Knocking.” In case you aren’t familiar with it, let me share my early experience with door knocking. [Read more…]

Building Your Personal Brand

Brands Sell Product

Brands Sell Product

Within a few years after I got in the real estate business, I purchased a cattle farm. During the early 70s there was a growing problem of stolen cattle and horses. Not many cattlemen were branding their stock at that time but the one’s that did, didn’t seem to be bothered with having missing livestock. Cattle rustlers seemed to stay away from all branded stock. North Alabama ranchers had abandoned the use of branding about 50-60 years prior so it was something new to us.

I had always said that I was born in the wrong century. I have always had a love for ranch work. I think I could go on a life-time cattle drive and enjoy every minute of it. Sitting straddle a horse all day is a sheer pleasure to me. As you can easily guess, my favorite movies are westerns. The thought of branding my own cattle was like acting in my own western movie.

After some extensive research on the state and federal level, I made application for my own brand. After receiving approval of the registration from Washington, [Read more…]