What are the top challenges in your Real Estate business? – Cat Levine

Every time Darren and I are with Real Estate Professionals we ask, “What are the top challenges in your business?”

Time and time again we are told “Getting more listings” is one of the top challenges to being more successful in Real Estate.

Listings don’t just drop into your lap, there are specific actions that you can take that will make you be the one people come to with their listing.

Referrals from Raving Fans are the most trusted and cost effective marketing available. All it takes is following my system to getting people to Know, Like and Trust you.

Here are 2 common myths…

Myth: Handing out my business card at networking events will get me listings

Busted: Commission breath stands out a mile away. Instead, think of ways you can show genuine interest in the other person, and ask how you can help them be more successful. Follow up with a text with a link to a contact or an article that shows you were thinking of their success. You will stand out from the rest!

Myth: I can’t get listings because I am new to the business.

Busted: Being new to the market what do you have that seasoned professionals might be missing? Time? Enthusiasm? Personal service? Your passion that YOU are the best person for the job is infectious and gets people trusting you are the best one to handle the sale of their biggest asset.

You need to understand and communicate “Why people should choose you”, and secondly, prove “why you are the best person to list their property”.

For more information on my system to creating Raving Fans, Referrals and Repeats, lets connect! cat@inkca.co.nz or 027 44 99 035

Do the hard work now!

As we are heading towards the spring and summer months, many industries find this time of the year improves their business sales and opportunities. Because of this, now is a really great time for us to develop our prospecting and business development skills. Have a think about how your team is developing their relationships with your target market and ensure that they prove and show that they add something different from the competitor. I do many sessions where sales teams are struggling to understand why their sales volume is not growing yet they haven’t really dug deep into understanding what their service proposition means to their customer.

Many of my larger keynote presentations are around ‘your customer is leaving’ and getting audiences to think about how they need to get their customer back. What will it mean in 2020 to be relevant to your customer base when they have so much choice and so much information. Here are 3 key things you should be doing as we head into spring:

  • Increase your prospecting opportunities by creating more meetings with a real purpose.
  • Review your database and identify your top 50 customers and start re- connecting with them in a way that it allows them to do business with you again.
  • Create a campaign that will be appropriate in the warmer spring months and it will enable your customers to understand what your service can provide them at this stage of the year.

If you focus on these 3 things, it will start getting your teams to really begin moving the business in a new direction into spring.

A great time of the year

When it comes to this stage of the year, I always start to get excited about us heading towards a new spring and summer.

We are just gradually starting to see the nights getting longer and even though the weather is still not the greatest and the winter bite is still hitting, it is great to be thinking that in a few months time, we are heading into those spring months.

Because of this, this time of the year is a great chance for us to start new beginnings. Start thinking about our businesses in new ways after reviewing where we are at for the year so far.

As we enter a new year, we always have lots of plans and ideas about what we will do different this year to become more successful and grow our opportunities but, at this stage of the year, sometimes we need to stop, look back and see if we are still focused on the key things that we identified would make us more successful this year.

As part of this also, it is a really great time to be able to consider friends, family and loved ones and to be able to consider what you have been able to achieve and do in that area. One of the key things for me that I have enjoyed over the winter is being able to take some time out on Saturday mornings to be able to watch kids sport. It is amazing to be able to see hundreds and hundreds of kids participating in local sports and being involved with their friends creating life long memories.

This month, I would like you to consider and think about what are the life long memories and experiences that you have been creating this year. May be you have not created enough and now may be the perfect time for you to set in your diary a date and time to do something that may surprise friends, family or loved ones or may even surprise you. Here are some suggestions:

  • Weekend away in a special location with no wifi.
  • Invite past business contacts you haven’t talked to in a white to ‘chat’.
  • Find a great short cruise option and invite friends or family to join you.
  • Winter BBQ in a location with friends or family, wrapped up warm…
  • Send a mid-winter Christmas card to friends and family. It will let them know you are thinking of them.
  • Lunch in a cafe or restaurant but held in a private room.
  • Road trip to meet friends and create a joint event.

June offer

Over the last few months, we have been receiving an increase in enquiries for an up and coming event that are looking to have a speaker at their event and wanting to get further information or insights into how our team works and the possible topics.

One of the things that I have been seeing more and more of is how businesses today have so much opportunity in front of them but are sometimes struggling to get their strategic plan or direction clarified to ensure that they can chase these opportunities.

This month we would like to offer a 1 ½ hour strategy session for you and your management team to investigate your business opportunities and provide a greater opportunity in the year ahead. This 1 ½ hour session will provide you with some practical skills of how to look at your current business environment and identify some new opportunities for your future success.

Robyn Pearce — The Time Queen’s Top Time Tips

  1. ‘No’ is your most powerful time management tool (but not in a career-limiting or relationship-limiting way!)
    Learn how to politely and appropriately say ‘no’ to potential time-stealers and less relevant activities.
  2. Every week, block in a few important non-urgent actions.
    Make appointments with yourself, written into your diary or organiser, to work on one or two activities per week of long-term and long-lasting value.
  3. Constantly ask, ‘What is my highest priority right now?’
    This great question helps us stay focused on activities that really make a difference.
  4. ‘How can I do this task more efficiently?’
    Become a ‘walking question mark’. There are always better ways to do things. Time-saving efficiencies are all around us, but most people don’t go looking for them. Instead, they just complain about lack of time!
  5. Block in regular sanity gaps.
    When did you last take a complete weekend off – no email, no business calls, no responsibilities other than the people you’re with? You’ll come back fresher and you’ll also produce better results.
  6. Manage your energy well and time looks after itself.
    Your energy levels are your indicator as to whether you’re doing the right things. If something isn’t flowing smoothly, something needs to change.
  7. Eliminate clutter in all areas of your life.
    Imagine every item you hang on to has an invisible silver thread connecting you to it. Does it energise you or pull you down?
  8. Don’t make email the first thing of the day – and turn off your alert.
    If you get hooked into email first thing in the day it takes over. Instead, you take control of your day. If people rely on email for urgent information, they’re using it wrongly.

The sale may not be now

In many sales environments, one of the key things we now need to understand about our customers, is that the sale may not be now. As you and I both know when we are out looking to make a purchase, we will do a number of elements of research before we actually enter into the buying process.

The first step will be to understand the product we are looking to purchase, we will start to research online for information around the product and ensure that we have a full understanding that the product will meet our needs. Once we have got to this point, we will then engage with a supplier of this particular product. Firstly on the basis that we are just looking to get further information and may not quite be in a position yet to make the purchase. Many businesses at this point fail to realize that every single person entering or enquiring about the product or service, is actually going to be a buyer of their product at some point in the future. Our biggest challenge is to create an environment where the customer feels supported and engaged with us at a relationship and emotive level to ensure that when they are entering the purchase process, they will be in a position to be able to close the sale.

It is vitally important for you to consider in your business right now, how many clients you have that are looking or thinking about purchasing your product or service.

Many people say to me “Oh Darren, these clients are just tyre kickers wasting our time or not engaged” and this is where I totally disagree. These clients are the types of people that you need to be creating connections with, understanding their needs and ensuring that you have clarity of the purpose of their enquiry. By doing this you have interest and empathy to their situation, you will start to create an emotional connection.

Creating pressure or trying to force the sale at this point in many cases, will force your customer to leave.

In today’s business environment, the concept of closing a sale, seems to have become a bad topic. What we have to understand is closing the sale has become a contentious topic. Many businesses feel that the purpose of closing the sale is to provide pressure on the customer which in today’s business environment, is inappropriate. I totally agree with the sense of the traditional pressured close is no longer an option in business, but the opportunity to be able to provide your customer with an ability to understand your product or service, how it meets their needs and the ability to make the transaction happen now rather than waiting, is all too important.

Consider the number of clients that you have in this area right now and understand what you are doing with them. I see many businesses today are not providing enough support or engagement with this group of people to hold on to the relationship.

Thinking outside the funnel

I was working recently with a client and we were discussing the current sales targets and the service that their business provided. As we investigated further, we discovered how the product that they were working with, could provide the customer with lots of different opportunities, it was realised that maybe these same opportunities or insights would be valid for other industries. By doing this, we have now been able to build a strategy to talk to two different industries that have now created literally thousands of more sales opportunities.

One of the key things I am consistently encouraging clients to look at is understanding their current market place and thinking outside the traditional service product sales funnel that they have used.

Think about other industries on how they could use your product or how we could use their communication channels to introduce your topic. Getting clients to be able to recommend you via their newsletter to new industries or new opportunities is extremely important in growing your sales funnel.

Consider right now your product range and think about what other industries could these products be applicable to.

Welcome to June

I cannot believe that we are nearly half way through 2019 and there seems so much to do.

This month we are focusing on 3 of the most important topics I think there are in business:

  1. The ability to prospect and attract new customers;
  2. Managing new customer enquiry; and
  3. Developing your brand in your future customers’ eyes.

These 3 topics are critically important for so many industries and especially those in professional services, it has got to be a key focus to your annual business plan.

In this month’s newsletter, we are looking at developing a prospecting machine in your business. This prospecting machine needs to provide your business with structure and consistency that will enable you to attract the level of business your business requires to deliver the result you want.

The second topic being lead management. In many of the businesses I am currently working in, we are seeing a considerable amount of general enquiry, first call enquiry and past client engagement at very poor or low levels. What this means is that there are some great opportunities for businesses to develop a much clearer lead management system and the following article will show you how this can be done.

Lastly, we have a new consultant join our team, Ed Scanlan, who is a specialist in developing your brand and message to market. We are very privileged to have Ed now as part of our team in helping support specialists and professionals in presenting the exact brand and market positioning they need to be successful. His article talks about developing your brand and how this can be systemised to ensure your success.

4 Quick ‘n’​ Simple Leadership Tips For Improving Employee Engagement With Remote Teams – TERRY WILLIAMS

According to a Gallup survey, the number of employees working remotely increased from 39% to 43% between 2012 and 2016. I know the mice will play when the cat’s away but what are these folk up to? We can measure productivity after the fact, and should. We should judge people by their results, not by slavishly being merely present at a desk until the boss leaves. Ultimately, if they’re meeting or exceeding targets, then does it matter if they’re working in a unicorn onesie whilst binge-watching ‘Game Of Thrones’ to get up to date before the new series starts? (Too late!) Maybe some of those Lannister tactics would boost revenue?

That same survey says the majority (57%) of employees say they would change jobs for one with a more flexible schedule, and 37% of people would change jobs for an employer that allowed them the ability to work from where they want at least part of the time.

Leadership is not just about transactional production. Ideally, it starts with hiring people of talent, intrinsically motivated, whose discretion you have evidence you can trust. Technology might mean you are far more capable today of micromanaging from a distance than ever before but you’re likely very aware that probably won’t be a helpful leadership style, particularly with those high-value, high-talent types. That same tech allows people to multi-task, peruse social media, etc all of which diffuses their focus and tech shouldn’t be the sole means of enhancing connection, commonality of purpose and inclusion. Leadership of remotely located teams is still about creating and maintaining an intentional workplace culture, even in the absence of a literal singular workplace.

If Tom Peters once said something like, “The true test of your leadership is what happens when you’re not around,” what have you done when you were around to maintain that influence when you’re not there in the physical sense? So, what can you, in a practical sense, actually DO?

  1. ABC – Always Be Curious. Ask questions to provoke and promote action. Not retro-questions asking for progress reports but future-facing questions like “Between now and when we next speak, what issues do you anticipate”? Or, “How do you feel Caitlin’s work might be affected by yours”? Note the use of the phrase “might be”. Can’t be any wrong answers with “might be”. Bringing a colleague into the mix increases the likelihood of engagement as people are usually more moved by their impacts on colleagues than on you or the company.
  2. According to Khaneman and Tversky, push motivators are twice as impactful as pull motivators. (ie we are equally motivated by the fear of losing $1 as we are by the potential gain of $2). Be practically pessimistic (that is to say, realistic) with your updates and foreshadowing with your remote folk. For example, “What if your supplier is late”?
  3. As you should with local people, be specific and regular with your feedback with remote people. Keep close a list of their names and, as stuff crops up, pencil feedback-worthy news in so you have it to hand when you’re next in contact. And schedule those contacts. If you wait until you “have time”, you’ll never have time or will only make contact when there’s a problem. Then you’ll be the person who’s only calling when there’s a problem. Don’t be that person.
  4. Make meaning overt and obvious, repeatedly. And, don’t TELL them, guide them to self-discovery. Have you tried W.I.D.W.I.D. and W.W.D.W.W.D. conversations? W.I.D.W.I.D. stands for “why I do what I do” while W.W.D.W.W.D. stands for “why we do what we do.” Don’t leave meaning to chance. Along with autonomy and mastery, purpose (ie meaning) is one of the fundamental drivers of engagement, at work and in life. When the going gets tough, the tough get going, not because they’re tough but because they know what the point of the going is.