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.

 

Guaranteed ways to generate leads from Social Media

As a practicing agent and now broker owner, I’ve used social media with intention for the last five years.  In 2008 when I was introduced to Facebook, I had no idea that I would be able to build a successful lead generation platform online.   There is truth in the fact, “everything works, if you work”.  When you actively use social media to build a business, you too can generate leads that convert and close.

 

How do we do  it?  In the beginning of my social media journey, I used it to connect with old friends from elementary and high school.   Planning the high school reunion was easy.  Easy to find old friends with a few clicks.  Since 2008 Facebook has gone through many changes.  We have personal pages, groups, business pages, the ability to sell our stuff, watch the latest Facebook shows and pay to advertise.   And Wait, Facebook isn’t the only platform to build an online business.   My go to tools include, Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, twitter, Pinterest and LinkedIn.  Yep, in that order.   I get more business and engagement from Facebook and Snapchat.

Steps to guaranteed leads on social media:

1. Increase your connections on Social Media. If you are using Facebook and you don’t have a network, friends, how can you convert your network into leads?  Facebook allows 5000 friends.  Your goal is to get there.  Maybe not overnight.  Patience and starting is the key to your social success.  Start with connecting with people from the past.  High school, college, friends, family and people from your past jobs.  These are people that may already know you.

2. Be human on social media. Are you posting everyone else’s content?  If you are, you’re not authentic you.  Be yourself on social media.

  1. Tell your story – example, your home buying experience
  2. Why you are in the real estate business.
  3. Who are you outside of real estate?
  4. What are your hobbies?

3. Engage and build relationships with your network on social media. If you only watch what people do on social media, you won’t generate leads.  People, friends and family want to work with the person that they know or the person the feel like they know.  The watcher on social media is like the person that sits on the porch all day and watches the neighborhood.  Be the person on the porch that knows everything happening in the neighborhood, says hello to everyone that walks by and invites their neighbors over for coffee.  Engage with your friends posts on social media.  If you like what was shared, make a comment!  The more you engage on social media the more likely someone will reach out to you when the time comes to buy or sell a house.

4. Meet with your network outside of social media. Yes, I mean it!  Go to dinner, have coffee go to networking events, a sporting event or invite your friends over for dinner.  The more personable you are outside of social media the more relate-able you are.  Then connect on social media.  Follow Sheena Baker on Instagram to see how it’s done!

5. Create relevant and consumable content. Video and the written word.  Remind your followers that you are a real estate agent.  Create a call to action.

6. Next Steps!  Start building on Social Media today.   Don’t think to hard about this stuff.   You’ll be glad you started today a year from now.  follow me on Instagram, IGTV and Snapchat today.  @CarrieJoLittle

You Have All This Stuff and No Engagement!

Social Media is a great platform to increase your bottom line.  However, if you are just a poster, sharer or liker, it’s time to get back to building relationships and great content.   If you build it they will come!  Just because you have a Facebook page or an Instagram account doesn’t mean you’ll generate leads.  We all must be intentional in our marketing and with relationships.   So how do we create engagement?  What do our followers or future followers want from us on social media?

  1. They want relevant content – are you the thought leader in your market place? Tell me something I don’t know. Provide content that encourages a click, engagement or a lead.
  2. Followers want authenticity – be yourself and tell your story. We all have something to share.   I like telling my story of home ownership.  I purchased my first home in 1997 with little money down.  However, I had to pay $900 per month for five months, to the builder, until I closed.
  3. Information that makes them engage – What can you tell your audience that creates engagement? Are you running a marathon?  If so, tell your audience and encourage them to join you as you run or prepare for the race.   Do you volunteer?  Show us how you help the community.
  4. Information that makes us think – Have you ever wondered why someone would buy a house on a busy street? Me too!  Now go research why and share it.
  5. Video that makes your audience watch, listen or read. –  Are you renovating your home?  Show me the before, during and after.  One day I’ll show you my closet!  Create short video clips then piece them together in iMovie or VivaVideo.   Become a brand ambassador for your business.
  6. The power of the Hashtag on Facebook and Instagram. Hashtags are a group of words the bring a conversation together.   Test Hashtags by following your favorite businesses or television shows on social media by searching for their Hashtag.  I follow the #GoodDoctor on Twitter to join the conversation.

Take the necessary steps to build your social media, engage with your followers today!

Build Your Real Estate Business with Linkedin

What is LinkedIn? LinkedIn is the World’s largest professional network.  The social media network has over 300 million users. This social media site gives an individual the ability to build their brand, power their career, future careers, learn and share professional content.LinkedIn

Building your brand with LinkedIn gives a real estate agent the opportunity to showcase professional expertise so they are noticed. Build your brand by updating your profile with great stories that attract the right viewers.  Who are you trying to reach?  Know your audience and write your professional resume to reach that audience. Real estate agents can highlight customer service skills, marketing skills, research skills, follow up and the ability to gage the market.

Put a face to a name by adding a professional photo, not a photo of your vacation trip.  First impressions are everything.  Think about how you want people to perceive you.  If you want your potential clients to take you seriously then spend the money to have a professional photo taken.  Once you’ve updated your profile create a catchy headline to reach your target audience. Then tell your professional story.  Make sure the story uses keywords and phrases to highlight your best skills to increase your visibility on LinkedIn.

Are you an expert in your industry?  What have you done to set your business a part from others in the real estate industry?  LinkedIn provides space to showcase your work.  Add your blogs, articles you’ve been featured in to highlight expertise in real estate or in a past profession.

Linkedin also provides opportunities for real estate agents to grow their networks. A real estate agent will already have a core group of people they interact with on a daily basis. These core professionals also have a network providing new opportunities for real estate agents to expand their networks. After your core network is established reach out to alumni, colleagues from previous jobs and past clients.   Another way to connect is to ask to be introduced or recommended by your core network. Many are eager to help build relationships.  The task is to ask if you don’t ask you’ll miss out on the opportunity to build your LinkedIn network.

Build Your Core Group

Connect with Alumni Join a Group Make Connecting a Part of your Routine Search for Industry Connections

Ask to be Recommended or introduced

Now that your network is established it’s important to cultivate these relationships.  Show your network that you are the expert with videos, blog posts and quick tips to help them with the sale of their home or how you can help that buyer get into to a home.

Stay connected with the LinkedIn App. Download the app to your smartphone and tablet. This is a quick way to stay connected, interact, say happy birthday, watch job changes, and comment throughout the day. Take advantage of the auto-reminders. Keep in touch with potential leads when you set up reminders to connect.

Reminders can be set as daily, weekly, monthly or recurring. A great way to stay connected without logging into the social media tool daily.

These are just a few tips on how to integrate Linkedin into your real estate business today. Continue to check in or follow my blog for more tips on how to take advantage of one the best professional social media tools available.