Have a Successful 2018

Video

Each week I try to write a blog post to focus on your business success.  This year I am going to start adding video blogs.  My goal is to keep up with a weekly blog.  Writing takes time and videos are easier for me.

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Leverage Video on Social Media

Creating video is easy.  Even if you don’t want to be on camera, you can build awesome videos.  Using today’s smartphone, anyone can be a videographer.

The starting point:

  1. Create videos with your smartphone
  2. Keep the phone horizontal (unless you are on snapchat, messenger or Instagram live!)
  3. Pick a subject
  4. Write 5 to 10 bullet points on a sheet of paper (REALLY BIG so you can read it)
  5. Then create your video – if you don’t want to be seen, make sure what you are sharing is relevant.
  6. Post the video

Sample video – Cory Little- Basketball

Next steps – Creating a 60 spot!  Think of 30 to 60 seconds as a commercial.  When you watch TV most commercial are 60 seconds or less.

  1. Create a few video clips with your phone
  2. If you have an iPhone add those videos to iMovie.
  3. If you have a droid phone consider ViviVideo to build your commercial (60 second spot)
  4. With these apps, you can shorten your clips and add the best parts of the video.
  5. You can also turn off sound, add music and add still pictures. I use wordswag, Over, grid apps, legend and quik to enhance my 60 second videos.   Want to learn how?  Click now and invest in your business.

Sample video – Parks in West Chicago

Live Video

  1. It’s not required to plan your live video – but you can plan your live video using the “The Starting point”
  2. When you go live start talking even if no one joins you.  Why? When you end your followers can watch the video later.
  3. Shorter live videos on Facebook allow the user to add captions after the video ends.
  4. Short videos are great for repurposing on YouTube and other social media sites.

Leveraging Video

Facebook

  1. Let your live video or video rest for 24 to 48 hours before paying for advertising
  2. Share your live video to your personal page to gain traction on your business page
  3. Add a photo to your video using canva or picmonkey. Any tool that allows you to build graphics.
  4. Boost your video and target a specific audience. You can also target your email database using the Facebook Ads Manager.

Snapchat, Messenger or Instagram Stories

  1. Build a story around your business
  2. Share tips on what you provide and how the consumer can benefit
  3. Instructions
  4. How to connect with you
  5. Behind the scenes information.

Periscope

  1. Tell your audience when you will go live.
  2. Send an eblast to your database
  3. Welcome people into your live event
  4. Tell people when you will start the actual learning.
  5. How will you answer live questions? As they appear or at the end of the event.
  6. Horizontal video is important if you intend on reusing the video.

Leadpages

Use your video with a lead pages product to sell your information, products or videos.  I use Leadpages to build my landing pages.  A lead page allows me to capture information from the consumer and provide information, count down pages and so much more.   This is the one tool I feel is a must have for any business.

Video Ideas

  • Share relevant content about your product or service
  • Don’t give everything away in the video. Provide a link where the consumer or follower can purchase the full version or the item.  Yes, your landing page built with tools like leadpages.
  • Provide the steps for something! 5 steps to selling your home fast.
  • 10 ways to leverage your LinkedIn account
  • If you’re a real estate agent showcase the cities you work in or the best restaurants
  • How to videos
  • The steps to home ownership

These are only a few ideas for video.  Take a few minutes and write down 12 topics, then break down each topic into 4 segments.  Now you’ll have 52 videos you can create for an entire year.  Yes, it’s that simple.

Want to learn how to create short videos on your iPhone?  Join me on my Facebook Group.  Smart Girl Media Live to get access.

Drip Campaigns Saved My Life!

As an agent, I am overloaded with inquires, potential clients, future clients and the ones that need my attention right now.  Chaos was my best friend.  My daily routine was working in chaos.  I had to do something.  So I did, I started using a drip campaign system that freed up at least 2 hours a day of my time.  More time to work with clients, writing and lead generation.  I was already using Mailchimp as an email marketing tool for my clients, however, I needed more.

I love using Mailchimp for email marketing.  It works great when sending e-blasts to clients, agents, and strategic partners.   This awesome tool to keeps me in front of my past clients, current clients, agents that request my schedule, and updates on the market place. Although I really love Mailchimp, I’ve come to realize that in order to be successful you need a drip campaign system.  What is a drip campaign?

A drip campaign is an automated process that provides relevant information to your buyers and sellers based on their current stage in the buying and selling process.  The campaign sends automated emails or text messages to your clients based on the emails or text messages you choose.  Many systems have pre-created campaigns.  Click and go!  Takes seconds.  I use Liondesk, a great tool for only about $25/month.   I stay in front of the client while I work with active clients.  No excuse, my buyers will always know I am in the business of selling real estate.

Things to know about Drip Campaigns:

  1. Drip Campaigns help you follow up with your clients automatically.
  2. Agents can build their own campaigns that send auto emails based on the information you want them to have.
  3. These campaigns keep you in front of the buyer or seller so they don’t forget who you are.
  4. Gives you the freedom to work with your “HOT clients” while the client in the incubation phase, receives timely updates on the market and the areas they’re interested in. Keeps you “Top of Mind” with the future client.
  5. Using a drip campaign let’s your clients know that you are still in the business of selling real estate.
  6. Allows you to re-direct your database to your social media or website.
  7. Drip campaigns can be used for past clients, current clients and future clients.

Example of a drip campaign:

Lead signs up for your offer on Facebook –>3 days later you send a new email with market information –> 3 days later you provide a link to “What’s Your Home worth” –> and so on.  Great content keeps the consumer clicking –> you follow up via phone, email or text and schedule the appointment.

Choose 4-8 collegesthat match youracademic profile.

Once you’ve selected the best CRM start a drip campaign right away.   Always ask for the new lead.  You have not because you ask NOT.  Most buyers start the home buying process online months before they reach out to an agent.  So make sure you’re the agent of choice.  Top of mind all the time.  And by the way, When you upgrade your mail chimp account, building drip campaigns is are easier to build for any business.

Guaranteed Ways To Increase Lead Generation on Social Media

March 2001, I decided to enroll in the real estate pre-license course. I guess you could say I was tired of the Monday – Friday work week.  My class met every Monday and Wednesday evening.  To this day, I think the real estate course was one of the hardest courses I’d ever taken.  I studied every day and signed up to take the exam within a week of the class ending. Yep, I passed the first time taking the exam.  Passing the exam may have been difficult, but what’s hard is learning how to sell real estate.  Securing leads and turning those leads into clients isn’t as easy as I’d hoped.  The one thing I figured out before finishing the course was to ask my friends to wait until I finished the class to sell their homes.   It’s a good thing I asked for the sale.

July 1, 2001, I listed my first home and sold it in 30 days.  After my first 3 transactions, I did whatever was necessary to generate a lead.  I walked my subdivision, put flyers in laundry-mats, took flyers to apartment complexes and held home buyer seminars.  Anything to keep marketing costs down.   My favorite call to action was, “Warning, Renting is Hazardous to Your Wealth”.  Yes, that Call to action still works.

Today, my model has changed.  My primary source of business is Facebook and my 2nd is by referral.  If you already know where your business comes from, it will be easy to add online marketing to your business plan.

Marketing online is extremely inexpensive.  Maximizing online tools is a great way to build a real estate business if you are using social media, email marketing, drip campaigns and lead capture tools.  The key to these inexpensive marketing tools is your “Call to Action”.  Are you able to create a click-thru on what you’re offering?  Do your followers want what you’re offering?  How about your paid advertisement?  If what you’re offering doesn’t apply to me I am less likely to click.  Think about what makes you click when you shop online.

Per the National Association of REALTORS 95% Millennials used the internet to shop for a home and only 60% of the Silent Generation.   The way we shop has changed.  I watch my kids shop on Amazon for clothes, technology and food.  There is a shift in how we consume information, make decisions and buy what we need.  Consumers are doing online research before they decide to purchase a home.  Millennials are searching for 11 weeks and Baby Boomers about 8 weeks before contacting YOU!

If our clients or potential clients are shopping online weeks before deciding to work with an agent how can we get their attention online? How do we break through the noise?  What is the guaranteed way to make someone click on your link?  The guaranteed ways to get someone to click is your “Call to Action”.  If your “Call to Action” or lack of “Call to Action” isn’t great, the potential client will not click.  Are you great at lead generation?  If so, you can be great at lead generation online. If you’re not great a lead generation we need to talk J.  If you are new to online lead generation below are a few ways to build great “Calls to Action”.

  1. What does the online shopper want to know? Think about your buyer and seller client.  Are you a 1st time buyer agent? 1st generational buyer agent?  Luxury agent? Global buyer agent?  Do you sell horse property, Farm Land, Condos or townhomes? Do you work with investors? Think about your market and your client base.  Create Calls to Action that reach your client.
  1. What can you offer that makes someone want to click? If your primary focus is investors, write titles that reach investors.  Example:  Are you looking for a list of fix and flip homes?  Click now for a list foreclosures in your area.
  1. Have you ever offered a “FREE” download? Example:  Thinking of selling your home?  Now might be the best time.  Click now to find out when the best time to sell.  Your free download might include tips on determining the best time to sell.  However, your potential client can’t receive the download until they provide an email and/or a phone number.  Once received you can send accurate information for their home and their city.
  1. What about a “How to Video”? How to videos can provide steps to home ownership.  Saving for your first home.  Tell your story.  Tell your followers about your 1st home purchase and your experience.  This video on Facebook generated over 2900 views, 10 leads, and  6 closed deals from June 2016 to October 2016. Let me negotiate your down payment.
  1. Have you ever considered sharing information on the “best restaurants” in your city? How about the best gyms or even showcases the park district?  I live in a city that has a swimming pool with a bucket.  Yes, this pool is exactly like the water parks in Wisconsin Dells.

My husband’s good friend always says, “Give people what they want, not what you want them to have”.  We want the consumer to see our listings, top producers, the best of the best, and that we sell X number homes per year, or that we’ve sold over a million in sales.  Guess what? The next generation buyer is a consumer of content and they want information.  It’s important to produce, so keep producing.  While you sell homes reinvent your marketing and provide awesome content.  Own your market place by creating great content and “Calls to Action”. Make us click and contact you!

Run Your Business Like A Business Series for REALTORS® Tip One

Run Your Business Like A Business Series for REALTORS®  Tip One

The best tip I can ever give is to “Get up, Get Dressed, & Get to Work and Start with Lead Generation”.   If you work better in the office go to the office.  If you can work from home, stay home.  If you get more work done at Starbucks, go to Starbucks.   Go to the best place where you can produce new business for your business.

Once you’re up and ready for work think about if you should check your email right away or not.  I know that if I check email I end up putting out fires or responding to emails that could have waited until 11am.   For me lead generation is the best way to start my day.  If I’m not working on lead generation I’m not building future lead opportunities.   Some agents can check email first then work on lead generation.  If you can do this and stay on track with lead generation then go for it!

Tip One – Summary

  • Get up and go to work
  • Schedule your lead generation time and put it in your digital calendar so it syncs with your phone, laptop and tablet.
  • You may also choose a to do list.  I use Gtasks app from Google on my phone.  The to do list can also be located in your Google Gmail account.
Google Task Drop Down Menu

Google Task Drop Down Menu

 

 

 

 

 

 

Google Task App

Google Task App

 

Next week I’ll provide tips on how to generate new leads.  If you can’t wait for this post, sign up for the Realist class at www.mredllc.com.  Classes are free if you’re an agent in Northern Illinois and a member of Midwest Real Estate Data.   Also consider putting everyone you know in an excel spreadsheet with Name, Address, phone and email address.  Once you’ve created your list find the top people that would refer you if you asked them to.  You’ll be more than prepared to begin next week.

 

 

Increase Your Business by 42% in the NEXT 12 Months

Increase your business by 42% in the next 12 months.

The Women’s Council of REALTORS® opening session started with a high energy and engaging speaker who challenged us to change our perception of how we do business. Did you know that 10% of real estate agents dominate the real estate market? Maybe you’re one of the 10%. If you’re not, Travis Robertson (@TravisRO) shared simple strategies to change your business by 40% in the next 12 months.

Below are my top take-aways from his presentation:

  1. Don’t give up on online leads. Only 3% or less are actually responded to.
  2. Consider Facebook Ads. By integrating Facebook Ads in your business plan, you will reach more of your friends and your friends’ friends in their news feeds.
  3. Follow up, follow up, follow up. Agents don’t stay in touch with their clients. Stay in their mind; at least 27 touches per year. Use direct mail, email marketing, and client parties as one of your touches.
  4. Deadly Myth: Online leads are crap?! Truth: The leads are not the problem; it’s your lead nurturing system.
  5. Create a business that supports your life! Not a business that runs it!

Check out the 2014 NAR Conference Blog for more tips for your Real Estate Business

Social Media Marketing Plan for AGENTS

Aside

1. Select the time of day to share on Social Media

There is no cookie cutter method to social media marketing.  Selecting the right time to share or post on social media is key to a successful real estate social media marketing plan.     The best times of day to post can often depend on your followers or customer personas.   Millennials are on social media all day using their mobile apps.  About 60% of mobile users are accessing their social media sites throughout the day.   So when are the best times to share on Social Media?

2. Choose your content

Many agents have no idea where to begin when adding content to their Facebook Business pages.   But if you take a few minutes to think about the real estate industry I am sure you can come up with information you want others to know about Real Estate.   Here are a few tips for choosing content.

  • Use statistics from your MLS to share city specific data
  • Share industry specific information
  • House Logic has a FREE REALTOR content driven website – You’ll need your NRDS#
  • How about information you receive from your Board, NAR and your REALTOR Magazine
  • Do you know your local city events, farmers markets and building programs
  • Facebook and Hootsuite allow future scheduling.   Plan your social content posts.

There is no excuse.   Become the industry expert on social media

3. Follow up is key

Make sure you have the Facebook and Facebook Pages apps on your smart phone, tablet or iPad.  By using these apps you can respond to real estate questions in a real time format when you say “Yes” to push notifications.

4. Engage your followers

Are you an expert at networking?  Are you good at talking on the phone?   Are you a good writer?  If you can do any of the above you can engage your followers.   Talk to your Facebook friends, family, network and Fan Page Likes.  When your followers post make a comment, Click LIKE or send a private message.  Of course, if it’s someone’s birthday.  Say “Happy Birthday.”  By doing these simple steps for engagement you can increase your social presence and let your “Facebook Sphere” know that you exist.

5. Review your Analytics

Facebook Pages has an Insights section so you can track your followers:

  • LIKES
  • Reach – Agents can track their organic and paid reach
  • Visits – Who is visiting your page and how are they getting to your page. Do you have special pages on your Facebook page?  You can track those visits as well.
  • Posts – When are your followers online
  • People – Who are your followers? Below is an actual chart of my Real Estate followers.

Everyone can build a Social Media Marketing plan.   I recommend starting with Facebook.  Facebook is still the most used Social Media Site in front of Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and Google+.  Join me at the MORe #TechFest2014 to build your Facebook Real Estate Fan Pages.

Consistency Pays Off – Back to the Basics for Real Estate Agents

Have you ever wondered how top agents become top agents?  How they are able to build a successful real estate business?  Could it be as simple as going to work every day?
Once you passed the State and Federal Licensing course and became a new real estate agent and probably didn’t realize that becoming a successful agent wasn’t as simple as you would have liked it to be.  I recently spoke to an agent that said, “I thought I just needed to sell 2 One Million Dollar homes and I would be set for the entire year.”  Little did she realize that she had to split that 6% commission 4 ways.  Some of you are already nodding your heads, “I thought the same thing.”
So what do top agents do better than the average Realtor®?  Here are a few tips that top agents utilize that can help you reorganize your business for the 2013 year.
1.       Think of real estate as your job – Yes, get up and go to work every day.  Plan out your entire 7 day week.  The hours you will work, show homes, take a day off, follow up, getting organized and going to your kids events.  Yep, I mean schedule everything you do.  When you worked for a Monday – Friday job you showed up and had a list of things to accomplish every day.  If you’re not doing this you are most likely not accomplishing as much as you could.
2.       Set goals – Weekly, Monthly, Quarterly and Annually.  Reward yourself when you reach a goal.
3.       Set time for lead generation – If you are a member of MRED use Realist to generate leads. From target marketing, pre-foreclosure lists, off market listings and so much more.
4.       Go on Broker Tours – If you don’t know your market start pre-viewing the new listings. What a great way to learn the neighborhood, meet other realtors, recruit for WCR J, and get comfortable walking around home.
5.       Visit your area City Websites – Find out what’s happening in your communities.  Who is the mayor of the city you live in?  Quiz – Do you even know?  If you don’t that’s your homework today.
6.       Follow up day – A day to you follow up with your buyers and sellers – Top agents have great follow up skills
7.       Networking – WCR is a great way to network with affiliates and other realtors.  Also consider your Chamber of Commerce, PTO meetings, local networking events.  Not sure where they are?  Try www.google.com.
8.       Do you have a special skill – Yes, set yourself apart from the average agent.  That skill could be cooking, architecture, the gift of gab.  Whatever it is USE IT!
9.       Social Media –Top agents use the latest technology with old school systems to build their businesses.  If you aren’t using it the next generation is.  They don’t answer the phone, but they do answer Facebook, Twitter and Text.  Learn how to use it!
10.    Direct mail – Yes, keep using direct mail.   I don’t care if it’s only $20 bucks a month.
11.    Do you have an annual budget?  – If not, create one and stick to it.  Build in advertising costs and the WCR Meetings.
12.    Database management – If I asked you “how many people do you have in your Client Relationship Management system could you tell me?”  If not, start organizing your clients.  If you are a Realtor® ConnectMLS has a great Prospecting tool.
These are just a few things you can do to get started.  Building a successful real estate business won’t happen overnight.  However, a well planned out business with great follow through will be successful.  Remember top agents show up for work every day.  They stick to their plans.  Keep this in mind, “if it’s going to be it’s up to me.” Robert. H. Schuller.