Do you ever look around at competitive agents in your marketplace and compare your results to theirs? Of course, you do. And you should. If your goal is to dominate your market, understanding who you're up against is an important first step. But more important than "Who" is "Why" and "How".
Market Dominance Happens by Design (Not Default)
It is a fact that the most successful agents in most marketplaces across the country are Craig Proctor System members. And here's a clue … they didn't achieve this market dominance by accident or by putting their careers in the hands of hyped up motivational speakers. If I'm right about you, you don't need more motivation, what you need is a PLAN.
The average income for Craig Proctor System Members is over $700k. Over 100 members earn OVER $1 Million in annual GCI. MANY earn annual GCI of $2 Million. Some are even about to break $10 Million this year. Following are 7 key boxes our most successful members can check with confidence. How many can you check?
1) A Well-Defined, Concise USP Reason to Call You and Hire ONLY You!
Why should your prospects choose you to help them buy or sell a home versus all other options? Can you articulate a compelling and convincing answer to this question in 60 seconds or less? Chances are your answer to both these questions is no because the fact of the matter is most real estate agents don't know what a USP (Unique Selling Proposition) is, let alone have one, yet if you don't promote a compelling USP, you're probably wasting most of the money you sink into advertising. Your USP tells the world who you are and what you do. It articulates clearly and concisely what benefit a prospect will derive from doing business with you instead of your competitors and it must be unique, specific, relevant, believable, focused and concise.
2) A Well-Defined Target Audience
If you try to be all things to all people, you dilute your effectiveness. It's very important to know who you're talking to. Select your target market so you can focus your marketing efforts and be efficient with your spending. You must identify the prospect you are going to target and then focus like a laser beam on that prospect's NEEDS. It pays to do some research and make sure there is demand for that prospect's home (E.g. neighborhood, price range) or adequate supply for the buyer you are targeting (E.g. first time buyer, move up buyer).
3) A Marketing Plan of Branded and Less-Branded (info) Ads to Generate Steady Lead Flow
One of the least understood areas for most real estate agents is effective marketing. When most agents decide to abandon cold calling and traditional prospecting techniques and venture into the "magic" world of marketing, they fall flat on their faces because they entirely miss the point of what their message should be about (i.e. it should be about their prospects, not about themselves). Effective Realtor marketing is a combination of less-branded ads that fly under the prospects' radar (i.e. they won't know it's from you) that offers benefit-rich information that only a qualified prospect would crave. The intent is to make it easy and non-threatening for prospects who don't know you to enter your lead gen funnel. In contrast, your branded ads should clearly identify that they are coming from you in order to build top-of-mind consciousness in a meaningful, compelling context. (HINT: Your branded marketing will always incorporate your USP).
4) Balance of Both Online and Offline Media to Generate Steady, Predictable, Consistent Business
In a world where online marketing is essential to business success, it can be easy to dismiss traditional offline media, but this is a mistake. The reality is that prospects regularly switch between digital and physical worlds as they move through the buyer's journey. For example, local classified ads are still a very effective medium to attract ready-to-act buyers because this offline marketplace is seen by prospects as focused and immediate. All of your marketing, both online and offline, must incorporate a direct response component that enables you to track, test and measure the result of every single ad. Successful Realtors understand their online and offline marketing channels as complementary vs. competitive and test out which delivers the specific prospect they're targeting at least cost.
5) A Lead Conversion System for Both Immediate and Longer Term Prospects
Many of the prospects generated by your marketing will represent FUTURE business (i.e. those prospects who are not ready-to-act immediately, but who are thinking of making a move in the next 12 months). You may ask why you should be bothered working with these longer-term prospects. Why not simply run ads that generate more NOW business? Well, the fact is, the closer prospects are to making a move, the greater the likelihood that they've aligned themselves with another agent. If you catch them early in the process, before they've had the time to form such alliances, you stand a greater chance of converting them to your client. You must have a system to follow up with (incubate) this future business as there will come a point (if you've followed up consistently) when it converts to now business, easily doubling, tripling or more the number of prospects who want to act NOW and are predisposed to working with you.
6) A Presentation System that Clearly Sets You Apart from the Traditional Agents Both in Terms of What You Do and the Results You Get
Are you ever frustrated over the fact that you lose presentations to agents you know you're better than? Are you sometimes forced to discount your worth just to get a listing? If your buyer or seller presentation fails to convince your prospects that you are the best agent for the job, all the money and time you spent on lead generation and follow up will be wasted. When you schedule your presentation and what you send ahead to frame your presentation matters … as does exactly what you say and how you say it. The system most agents follow is called "wing it", with the conversation geared to making a personal, friendly connection. While rapport is important, it's not nearly enough. Your presentation must answer the question WIFM (What's in it for me) - with "me" being your prospect. You must address what your buyers and sellers REALLY want vs. what most agents think they want so you're able to block out all other agents, no matter how many others are presenting, no matter if the prospect is also interviewing their Realtor neighbor, cousin, last agent or best friend, even if these agents resort to commission discounting and list price inflation.
7) A Team of Specialists Who Assist You in the Lower Dollar Productive Activities so You are Freed up to Work ON Your Business
As your business grows, you will have to think about getting some help. If you don't, you will forever put in 80-90-100 hours or more per week (until you burn out), and you'll bump up against a certain level of production that you won't be able to get beyond because you are physically stretched to the limit. Just as bad, the service you give your clients will suffer. Successful agents model their businesses after other successful business professionals such as lawyers, accountants and doctors. By hiring team members to handle lower dollar productive activities (such as banging in signs, playing receptionist and installing lock-boxes for example) you are freed up to focus on the parts of the job you enjoy most, are best at and that make you the most money (such as converting prospects and working with clients).