About carriejolittle

Carrie Little has been in the real estate business since 2001. She is a licensed Real Estate Managing Broker, with CarMarc Realty Group, in West Chicago Illinois. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Elmhurst College, a Paralegal Certification from Boston University and a Masters of Science degree in Digital Marketing and Analytics. Carrie is the Past President, 2014, for the West Suburban Chapter of the Women's Council of Realtors® in Illinois. Past President for Women's Council Illinois and a National Executive member. As a continuing education instructor and contract trainer with Midwest Real Estate Data, since 2008, she is able to train over 5000 real estate professionals using the best MLS tools available in the United States and the Northern Illinois Area. She holds a Continuing Education license in Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Michigan, New York, and West Virginia She has a background in Social Media, Television, Commercial Real Estate, Residential Real Estate, Marketing and Business Administration. She is a proud mother, soon to be grandmother and enjoys helping and motivation others to reach their professional goals, personal goals and real estate dreams.

Think Outside the Box and Remain Focused

This is the time when it’s time to “think outside the box” as we work to a new normal for the next few weeks in real estate.  We are all concerned about operating our businesses during social distancing.  As we adapt it’s important to make sure our buyers and sellers remain at ease during a temporary change in how  agents work.   Real estate is an asset to the economy and will continue to be.  Below are simple steps to keep the real estate industry moving forward.

  1. It’s time to start creating video – I’ve been telling this to agents for the last few years.  If you haven’t started creating video, now is the time.
  2. Showcase specific rooms in your listings
  3. Create video the is motivating and inspiring for your followers
  4. Provide value to your sellers by offering suggestions to keep their homes clean from any bacteria and viruses – clean your home, wash your hands and check in on your clients and friends.
  5. Drop of cleaning items for your sellers – hand sanitizers, Clorox bleach wipes and a can of Lysol
  6. Do you have buyers that want to stop viewing homes?  Buy them gloves and bring hand sanitizer.  Better yet the seller might already have it available for you and your clients. However, if your clients don’t want to go, don’t go. Consider virtual showings and get permission from the listing brokerage to show via FaceTime or IMO. Bring the house to your client.
  7. Continue to market the home on social media
  8. Invest in Facebook and Instagram ads for your listings and to reach potential buyers.
  9. Watch the market data and be ready to explain it.
  10. Don’t panic – it’s important to keep calm for your clients

There are things we can control and things we can’t control. Take control of what you know and remain confident and the expert in your neighborhood for your clients.  What suggestions do you have for your clients or to stay positive during the corona-virus outbreak?

It’s Time to Take Learning Seriously

In order to have the lifestyle of an entrepreneur, I had to take real estate seriously.  I had to learn the business and take ownership of learning it.  So I did, I became not just a REALTOR, I became a student of real estate.  If I needed information I made sure I was in the office to ask questions, I showed up to training and I took in person classes.  If I didn’t know something I took ownership of my learning and found the information.

Once when I was in the office, someone called to see a HUD home.   In the early 2000’s, agents or the office had to have a HUD key.  When I would talk to agents about borrowing the key, the agents would not share how to get a key or how working HUD homes worked.  After being frustrated I google how to work with HUD homes.  I read every detail about HUD homes.  Not only did I become an expert, I figured out how to obtain my own HUD key. That’s right! I took ownership of learning.  I got tired of everyone else having the information that I needed.

When a market market is stable, we have a large number of new agents coming to the business.  When business is good starting a new business appears easy.  We have agents entering the business from those that think it’s a get quick rich opportunity, part timers, some of the timers, investors and some full time agents.  Sometimes, I think we made real estate look easy on Instagram.

As a broker owner, real estate speaker and digital marketing instructor, I am amazed that folks still want to just make a phone call to ask a question, but they refuse to show up to class.  I like to say, “I’m not the help desk”.  I think if I started an 800 number line, my phone would never stop ringing with agents that don’t come to class or they can’t, because their full-time job gets in the way.

 “Learn how to Learn or figure out how to figure it out” Carrie J. Little

I love it when agents come to class and then asks for clarity.  If you don’t come to class it’s hard to teach a concept in 5 minutes.  The truth, it’s hard to answer a question on the phone when it really takes a few hours to teach the concept. So, when an agent does call and asks a question, I have to provide the watered down version and then say, “there is so much more to your question, please come to class or watch the online class in our workplace social media site.  If the agent is from another office, I have to refer them back to their managing broker.  On the flip side, I do offer training in my Facebook group Smart Girl Media Live, on YouTube and IGTV.  Join me today.

When I don’t have time to answer the question, I must tell the agent what to do and the agent doesn’t know why they are taking the action I suggested.  The need to just do and then here was no learning involved. When learning isn’t involved you will always be servant to those that have the knowledge.  Learning happens after you’ve taken the class, gotten the experience and then when you asks questions for clarity.  Wouldn’t you rather know the information for yourself?

“Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.” 

“If I teach you how to learn or you learn how to learn, you’ll have a real estate business for a lifetime.”  Carrie J. Little

Running a real estate business without learning is like trying to put together a piece of IKEA furniture without instructions.  Taking the real estate course and working in the real estate business is like putting together the IKEA furniture with the instructions.  You may not have all the pieces and all the holes may not line up well, but you have the information to get the job done.  You may have to call for help and get more pieces but you were better prepared because you already had the instructions.  If you don’t have the instructions or the knowledge, you’re likely to make mistakes.  Agents that wing it and agents that don’t learn this business are more likely to quit, obtain a code of ethics fine, lose their license or never quit their real jobs because they never became proficient.

  • Decide today to take learning seriously
  • Sign up for class, pay attention in class and take notes
  • Share what you’ve learned with others
  • Those that teach remember what they’ve learned
  • Ad education to your annual plan
  • Learn so you Earn

The truth, if you don’t want to be told what do for the rest of your life, learn the business.  If you want to run the business like a business become an agent that learns and agent that seeks to understand.  Learn how to figure out how to figure it out! Wouldn’t you rather be the go to person for the knowledge?  Or would you rather someone else be your boss forever?  Entrepreneurs have to be willing to learn!  With that I implore you, please take learning seriously, learn how to figure things out, come to class and put into practice what you’ve learned.

 

Digital Marketing Assessment for Real Estate Agents

Whether your building a personal brand, reinventing yourself, generate quality leads or trying to be relevant in this social world we must first answer simple questions before developing a digital marketing strategy for your business.  With all the technology available real estate professionals must step back and define what they want out of digital marketing.  We have many digital opportunities to build our strategy for the online world with social media, email marketing, lead pages, video, blogs and podcasts.
However, many agents and real estate firms don’t know where they are in this digital landscape.  If you don’t know where you are in the social media world, how will you know what to build for your strategy?  Let’s build better brands by answering a few simple questions below.
  1. Do you have a digital marketing strategy?
  2. What is your company’s mission statement?
  3. Who is your ideal client?
  4. Create a SWOT analysis.  What are your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and Threats
  5. Does your company or agent have SMART Goals?  If not, write them down.
  6. If I google you or your company, can I find out more information about you or your company?
  7. What social media platforms are you registered on?
  8. Of those social media platforms, which social media platforms are  you actively using?
  9. How many followers, connections or friends do you have on each platform?
  10. Are you or your company tracking insights and analytics?
  11. Are you using email marketing?
  12. Are you using a CRM to manage your clients?
  13. Does your company pay for any online ads? If so, which platforms?
  14. Does your company use lead capture tools or landing page to capture leads?
  15. Are you generating business from social media, email or online ads?
  16. What do you want to portray to your followers on social media?  consider; you’re an expert in your market, first time home buyer agent, luxury agent, you know the neighborhood, your a professional, real estate is a real business for you, not a side hustle, etc…..
  17. What are you expecting out of a digital marketing plan?
  18. Is your company using video to market the company or create brand awareness?
  19. Does the company have a blog?
  20. Does the company have a podcast?
  21. What is your budget?
  22. Is there anything else we need to know about your business or current marketing plan?
  23. What is your goal for a digital marketing strategy?  Brand awareness, lead generating, engagement, etc.
  24. Are you willing to do what it takes to leverage a digital marketing plan?
If you are currently using social media, have you completed a social media assessment.  Of the social media platforms you access, do you know how many people follow you and how many you are following?  Do you know how many likes you have on Facebook?  Take the quick assessment to help with your digital marketing strategy.
The Social Media Assessment
1. Facebook Insights – who is likely to buy from you?
2. Instagram – what content gets the most views, hearts and comments?
3. Does your current content generate leads?
Once you know where you are in the digital landscape, creating a digital marketing strategy is simple.  If you are low on followers, it’s time to start targeting your network to gain more followers.  If you have followers but no engagement, it’s time to start engaging with your network.  Relationships still matter on social media.  Not just in face to face arenas.  If you have followers, engagement on your platforms, this means that you comment and others comment on your posts, then it’s time to consider ad placement and building a better online persona, and lead generating content.
In addition to becoming more intentional on social media with a digital marketing strategy, I highly recommend creating video content.  Per Pew Research “73% of adults report using the video sharing site” (Pew Research).  If this is true, by creating video you provide your brand a chance to be found online.
What are your next steps?    After answering the above questions and completing the social media assessment
  1. Create an annual content plan
  2. Break the plan down into 12 months, then weekly and maybe daily.
  3. No social media presence?  It’s time to start engaging on your networks posts.  Each agent or company will create a different strategy, but if you don’t have a presence online consider posting on Facebook business and Instagram at lease once a week.  Use appropriate hashtags for your business and location options in Instagram.  Start using the story features daily so you appear to consumers daily.
  4. So you have a social media presence, but no engagement.  It’s time to start commenting on your networks posts.  Not just a LIKE or an Emoji.  Actually have a conversation on social media.
  5. A simple social media strategy might be to
    1. post weekly
    2. create a 60 second video weekly
    3. create a story daily
    4. Create original content – the content will depend on your answers to the digital marketing assessment
  6. Use  a call to action when you post about real estate.  Or make sure your profile has a way to connect with you.
  7. Stay consistent with your posts.  If you create video stay consistent with date and time.  Or pre-post when you will create video or live video content.  Set the expectation with the date and time of your live event.
  8. Stay on task with your CRM or consider a tool like Trello.  Trello helps  you can organize your digital marketing plan so your team can collaborate and stay on track.
What are you waiting for?  Get started on your digital marketing plan today.
Follow me on Instagram  CarrieJoLittle and SmartGirl.Media

Are you a new agent? Ask a lot of questions!

If you could go back in time, what would you do differently and what questions would you ask?

This year will be my nineteenth year in the real estate business.  When I started selling real estate in 2001, my goal was to just make enough money to supplement my family’s income.  I wanted the ability to take my kids to the swimming pool, on vacation, join sporting camps, volunteer at their schools and be home before 5pm every day.   My family was more important than becoming a top producing agent.  I didn’t need to make a killing in real estate, I wanted to make a living.  Just enough to supplement my Monday – Friday income from previous jobs.

When I started in the business, no one told me that real estate was a career where you typically work evenings and weekends.  No one told me to make learning a priority.  They also didn’t tell me that I was responsible for my own marketing, lead generation, money management and transaction management.  I also didn’t ask the right questions.  I asked for help, and probably bugged everyone in the office, but I could have started in this business so much better.

So, if I could do it all over again, what would I do differently?  I would:

  1. Always split my income to pay household expenses, income taxes, marketing, and savings.
  2. Take learning the business seriously my first year.
  3. Maybe starting as an agent admin for a seasoned agent my first two years.
  4. Definitely get involved early. I had no idea that I could have joined an association committee, Women’s Council of REALTORS®, and other groups, like YPN the young professionals network.
  5. I would go to networking events outside of real estate to build a larger sphere of influence.
  6. Stay consistent with my home buyer workshops.  I should have never stopped having these workshops.  Buyer workshops worked for my business.
  7. Use a CRM from day one!  My best tip for a new agent.  Get into the habit of adding everyone to your client relationship management tool.

If I could go back in time, I would also ask the following questions.

  1. How long does it take to close your first deal?
  2. How do I plan for the slow months?
  3. When should I start working on my goals for the next year?
  4. When is the best time to create and sending marketing for the next listing season?
  5. How hard should I work on a business plan?
  6. How do I get involved?
  7. How much money should I expect to make my first year?
  8. How many hours should I expect to work?
  9. Where will my business come from?
  10. Among so many other questions

Do you have some of these questions?  Or other questions?  Don’t hesitate to ask the agents and the broker in your office.

After years in the business, I wish I had asked more questions.  Therefore, I want to help the next generation REALTOR® coming into our industry.  If you were a new agent today, what do you wish you knew, what do you wish you asked?  Help me help others by completing this survey.  Should take less than 5 minutes.  Click now to help me.

Easy Ways to Build Better Social Media Graphics!

In the world of technology, we have so many options to build info-graphics for our industry. But many of us I have no clue on where to begin.  No matter what business you’re in, it’s important to understand that your brand matters when you post on social media.  Whether it’s Instagram, IGTV, Facebook, Snapchat, LinkedIn, or Twitter, your brand matters when you post on social media. I’ve created a few tips to make sure your graphics look awesome when you share graphics.  Let’s get started!

  1. Pick the correct size layout for the platform you are posting to!
  2. Always make sure you frame out your image. What does that mean, when you create images think about how it’s perceived when your viewers are on your social media accounts. Does your post look clean or just thrown together?  Make sure you consider A-frame or a border.
  3. Choose a theme. There are many themes on Pinterest to help generate ideas. Themes include a checkerboard layout, color schemes, and you might consider posting in threes. Post a quote, then post an image, and then post something about your business. You don’t have to be like every other business or real estate agent.
  4. Personalize your post with your own images. Make sure your Camera Lens is always clean. You can buy screen cleaners almost anywhere.
  5. Simple is always better. Keep your posts simple buy only uses 7 words or less.  Are there times when you’ll add more text, yes.  But think about the consumer and how long they are willing to read your information.
  6. Think clean graphics. And always keep your fonts the same.
  7. Not sure if you have an awesome social media layout? Ask your friends or colleagues to tell you what they think about your social media people.

Graphic building tools: 

  1. Canva – I use this tool the most. I can build flyers, social media graphics, story graphics and more on the website. Then I download the graphic from the app on my phone.
  2. WordSwag – Turns ordinary images into beautiful text graphics. App driven and there is an upgrade version
  3. PicMonkey – This is one of my favorite design tools. It took a while to figure it out, but once you do, it’s great for all your social media.  I use it to make square shapes into different shapes.  For Example, I always take a real estate agents’ photo and make a circle version of the image.
  4. StorySwag – This new version of wordswag brings life to your stories on Instagram, messenger and snapchat.
  5. Ripl – every agent should pay for this app. Especially if you aren’t great at building slide shows for your listings. Create simple slideshow videos and grids that come alive when you post.
  6. Relythat – I love this app.  There is a monthly fee.  However, there is a one time sale happening now.  Wow! RelayThat is only a one-time cost of $49 through AppSumo.  Upgrade your existing account at http://relaythat.com/appsumo and join the rush!

Want to learn how to use canva?  Join my Facebook group today!  Click HERE!

Are you motivated by what you see? 

In today’s social world we are exposed to so much content it’s hard to keep up.  We know more about our friends, family and neighbors than anyone ever cared to know.  Information is at our fingertips in seconds.  I can find out information on just about anyone or business, on any social media platform right now, because the world is telling us in real time.

In many cases, I love the information highway and the fact that I can learn so quickly.  Learning when I want to learn, is how I want to learn.  Not when you tell me.  I often wonder how I made it out of high school not having a smart phone.  Good thing we had the library and read encyclopedias.

So, what do you really look at on social media? When I look at Instagram, I have access to real estate agents all over the United States and all over the world to see how they work.  Many agents are famous on Instagram. Some of us are famous on Instagram and sell real estate. Some of us are famous on Instagram and when we look up their numbers, they’re just famous on Instagram. I’m not knocking those that aren’t selling real estate but are famous on Instagram, However, if you’re famous on Instagram, hopefully you are using that platform to talk to the consumer and educate the consumer, so you can sell real estate.  We had to start somewhere!

If the truth be told, and you look up my numbers I’m not selling real estate. Do i have an answer? Of course, I am now a real estate broker owner of a company in Illinois. I’ve been selling real estate since 2001 and transitioned to an owner in 2017. What I learned from my previous brokerage, is that the managing broker really needed to be available to train and educate the agents in the office. Otherwise, the owner/managing broker, if they are selling real estate, they become the competition for the agents in the office. I am not saying that the owner shouldn’t sell, however if you are going to own a company, you may want to look at the model you want for your company. You may want to be the leader of your company and become the lead generator.  Then all the business goes under your multiple listing service ID.  Then the agents work for you and they go out and work with your clients or the business that you build with lead generation.  This model is where you’re the person that talks to the clients and manages the business.

Before opening my brokerage, CarMarc Realty Group, I encouraged my husband to get his license so I could run the company and he could work with our clients. As I’m writing this blog post, I currently have 26 agents including myself. I found that I need to be able to answer questions via phone, text and email.

Ask yourself this question, are you driven or motivated by what you see on social media? If you decide to be like other agents on social media, make sure they comply with your license law and the code of ethics. Just because someone has an awesome Instagram account, doesn’t mean they’re ethical.  Agents will often challenge me and say, Carrie, “this agent is doing it, why can’t I?” My response is “If that agent jumped off a building are you going to follow along?”  Or do you want to be your authentic you? Agents aren’t always successful online first.

Agents that generate leads or have a huge following on social media, might already have a huge network, allowing for lead generation to come easy.  Remember, you can’t beat what you copy. Emulating what other agents do on social media, may or may not be a great idea.   It doesn’t mean that you’re going to beat the other agent business, but you need to think about what you want out of your social media for real estate. You could be the most popular agent on Instagram and the most broke agent on Instagram. When I started selling real estate in 2001, I had an 11-year-old, an almost 3 1/2-year-old and I became pregnant.  My goal was to make a living not a killing.  Learn from other agents, can you emulate what they do, however, you won’t be your authentic you.  We didn’t have Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, dig, delicious, stumbled upon, reddit, Instagram and Snapchat. We had to generate business, via the mailbox, networking, newspaper ads, and maybe a billboard.  For me making a living included, going to the swimming pool as often as I could with my kids every summer.  Therefore, I planned my day so I could be a parent that would spend time with my kids while they were young.

As of today, my youngest, who knows what a commission check is, is in his last year of high school. Now I can run a company, educate the agents in my office, help my agents close deals, train agents all over the United States, train office staff, and write a blog post and create videos and a podcast.  “I love what I do.”

Ask yourself this question, “what do you really want?”  Do you want to be like me, the agent on Instagram or do you want to be like you? I challenge you to sit down and write down your goals. I challenge you to come up with what you want out of real estate. That might change in 5 years.

You don’t have to do what everyone else does on social media. Remember, you can’t beat what you copy.  Your goal is to grow every year in business, not copy other agents, but a successful business while building your own brand.  If you’re motivated by what you see then you can’t be your authentic you!  Trust when I say, everyone knows when you are trying to be someone else.  So, Be your authentic you!

Is Having a Paycheck Hindering Your business?

Real estate agents don’t earn a paycheck.  We get paid based on our efforts and when our transactions close.  We work, in many cases, five to seven days a week to produce leads that generate buyer and seller transactions that turn into a commission check, not a paycheck.  A paycheck is what some gets after completing a job for their employer.  And usually after working a 40-hour work week.  Full-time agents work 60+ hours a week and many of those hours happen when our client’s workdays end.  Therefore, we are often out until 8’clock at night.

Real estate agents are independent contractors not employees, this means we work for ourselves under the sponsorship of a brokerage.  We get paid by our sponsoring brokers after we close on a real estate transaction.  I was recently at a convention where I had the opportunity to network with Dr. Danette O’Neal, a REALTOR University professor.  We talked about the power of need vs. want.  When you need a paycheck it’s hard to focus.  When you don’t need a paycheck it’s easier to focus on the goals for your business. Dr. O’Neal Said, “There is a difference between people that want money and the people need money.  If you focus on the want, you’ll forget about the need.”  Even then it’s hard to focus on wanting income when you need an income to pay your bills.  This can often be hard to overcome, that’s why we have agents with part-time and full-time jobs.  The idea of working for hours or days without a paycheck is difficult to handle.  Therefore, the power of having a paycheck can hinder or hurt an agent looking to become a full-time in the business.  So how can someone go from need to want and become successful in real estate?

  1. If you are working a regular or part-time job, learn the business of real estate. Take as many classes as you can to master the real estate business.
  2. Practice the steps to home ownership with your friends and family.
  3. Show homes every weekend to a friend or family member. Tip: try to show vacant homes.  This way you don’t inconvenience someone living in the home.    Please make appointments.  Note: You can never show a home without permission.
  4. Learn the lending industry. No, I don’t mean take classes to become a loan officer, I mean meet a lender for coffee and have them explain a specific program to you.  Attend a lunch and learn with your local mortgage company. Learn the difference between, FHA, VA and conventional and why a buyer may need to use one loan over the other.  You are not replacing the loan officer but understanding the process so you can better serve your client.
  5. Practice listing a home. Do you know how long it takes to process a new listing or how long it takes to prepare for a market analysis?
  6. Go on broker tour. The benefit of touring a neighborhood helps you understand, how to use the lockbox, what the homes look like in the area and networking with other agents.
  7. Set goals, how many buyers will you work with this year? How many sellers will your work with this year? Write down your goals and put them in a place where you see them daily.
  8. How many people do you need to speak to daily to reach your goals? How much engagement do you need to generate leads from social media?
  9. When you start closing transactions, make sure you save money to eventually go from a part-time agent to a full-time agent. 

The power of a paycheck will either keep you from selling real estate or help you sell real estate.  If you currently receive a paycheck, live beneath your means, save money, and master real estate.  If you focus on what you want with your goals in front of you, you will be come a successful agent.  Nothing comes easy, remember you must get up, get dressed and work the real estate business.  Don’t wait for real estate to happen to you, make real estate happen for you.

Follow me on  instagram – Carrie Jo Little, BS,MS profile and download your first 6 weeks in real estate found in my profile.  Check out my IGTV videos as well.

 

Real Estate Beyond Social Media

Social Media is one of the best ways to build any small business.  It’s easier and faster to generate a lead in today’s market than ever before.  In the early 2000’s I remember when we had to place a buy newspaper ads, door knock, put out doorknob bags, cold call and send direct mail marketing to compete in this industry.  We also built our businesses with our friends, neighbors and family.  Also known as your sphere of influence and relationship building. Some of us actually used a fax machine to send flyers.  This was the every day hustle for most real estate agents.

Today, I use Social Media to build relationships, connect with friends, colleagues, and education.  Social Media has changed the way I generate leads and close deals.
Although, social media has changed the game, real estate agents need to know the basics of the business.
Beyond Social media we need to understand the rules, how to work with buyers and sellers, how to explain statistics, know our markets, manage a transaction and follow up. You can be the best social media marketer, but if you don’t get the basic skills of selling real estate you will end up losing clients or building a successful business.
Every month I have the opportunity to teach approximately 200 new real estate agents. When your agents come to class the only thing they want is a paycheck.  In most cases the newbie agents signed up thinking they were getting a “Real Job”.  Someone forgot to tell them they were responsible for generating their own business.  I’m often asked if I can coach or mentor agents.  I am always happy to help you spend your money, but before I do, there are so many tools available to help with becoming a better agent.
  1. Take all the free training from your brokerage – if it’s not free,  why?  If you are paying monthly fees to have your license with a firm, why are spending extra money for training?  If you signed up for a 100% company, then I can see why you pay for training.  You signed up to make all the money when you close a deal, so the company holding your license needs to make money too.  Basically, 100% is 100% for a reason.  If the truth be told, 100% of nothing equals nothing.  You could easily be the broke agent if you don’t get training.  So educate yourself!  On-demand learning.  Join Marki and I in Real Estate Live with Carrie & Marki, where we educate agents on Facebook.
  2. Sign up for every free course provided by your local association.  It doesn’t matter who you sign up with, 100%, flat fee, or a split based firm, you can get the training if you seek it out.
  3. Sign up for every MLS class.  In my market our MLS trains you at no additional cost. You do pay for training in your dues, but you can show up to class for “FREE”.
If you take advantages of training you will be better off than agents that have been in the market for years.  Once we think we’ve learned it all, we stop learning.  Go get the education and keep learning.
Here’s what hard, we want to go from not understanding to understanding everything there is to being a real estate agent overnight.  It just won’t happen.  You have to become a learner of the business, work longer hours than a regular Monday through Friday job, and become an entrepreneur.
“It takes 10,000 hours to become an expert”  Malcolm Gladwall
My full time job will not accommodate your part time effortsMarki Lemons-Rhyal 
Do you want tips on how to start in your first six weeks of business?  Click here for my jump-start guide to beginning in real estate.
Follow me on Instagram and Instagram TV

3 Brokers Walk Into a Bar

Professionalism, training hurdles, commissions, and sales meeting incentives were among the hot topics in this first-in-a-series chat with broker-owners.

January – February 2019 – by Erica Christoffer

What happens when you bring together a group of broker-owners to dish about the business and share ideas for addressing common problems? For this chat, the first in a series, the magazine invited a group of industry pros for a beverage at a Legal Seafood eatery in Boston. They were in town for the REALTORS® Conference & Expo in November. Whether it’s how to deal with lagging professionalism in the industry or what it takes to run an inspiring sales meeting, the candid conversation provides a glimpse into the everyday challenges facing the broker community.

The path to improved professionalism

Scott: Professionalism is lacking when agents are left to their own devices.  Read more…….

Source: 3 Brokers Walk Into a Bar

 

You are a new agent! Where will your business come from?

When the market is good, more people become real estate agents.  When the market isn’t good, we lose agents to the Monday through Friday workplace.  The agents that stay in the business through the tougher times understand what it is like to generate business.
Lead Generation
However, when you’re new to the business or coming back to the business, the hard question is, “Where will your business come from?”  If you’re a social media watcher, many agents make our industry look easy. And there are agents that you never see in social media that also make this business look easy.
In 2001, non of us were thinking we’d have our own personas online.  Today, I can show you my business and how I work.  I can hire photographer, take awesome photos and give the idea that I’m successful.  Maybe it’s true or maybe, I’m “Faking it until I make it.”  Don’t fake it.  Share your journey on social media and provide awesome information!
For those of us that watch social media, you miss out on the behind the scenes of a REALTOR.  For those agents that have a huge social following and are successful, many times you don’t see the late hours of paperwork catch up, email catch up, marketing work, follow up, showing homes, creating market reports and putting out fires.  In addition to getting new business.
Home Ownership
So, where will your business come from? 
  1. The people you already know.  Make a list with name, phone number, address, email address and social media accounts.
  2. If you’re new to the business you need to practice the business.  Create a market analysis for your neighbor and practice the presentation.  More than one neighbor. The benefit of doing this is when the time comes to list a home you’ll already have some level of comfort when presenting to someone you don’t know.
  3. Go on broker open house tours. Learn the inventory available and practice using the lock boxes.
  4. Show homes to your friends.  Don’t inconvenience sellers.  Show vacant homes.  This is not HGTV folks.  Practice scheduling and using the lock box app or key.
  5. Walk your neighborhood and put doorknob bags on each door with community information, market updates and things to do in the area and ask for real estate business
  6. Have an event in your neighborhood.  Not sure what to do?  How about having the “Cup Cake” food truck at your house or the “Ice Cream”Truck.  Give out free ice cream or Cupcakes.  Become the neighborhood go to person.  It took me 7 months to become the household name in 2001 when I started selling homes.  Consistency works!
  7. Sit other agents open houses from your office.  A great way to practice talking the “Real Estate Talk” and gaining new buyers.
  8. This is a relationship business.  Keep building relationships.
Here is the key!  You have to start somewhere.   The hustle, working hard and networking is real.  You must work if you want to be successful in this business. Don’t expect your company to give you business.  You are in the entrepreneur business, so let’s get to work and build our real estate businesses.
Keep coming back for new agent tips!  Follow me on Instagram for live shows on real estate.  CarrieJolittle