Many people, most recently Keith Ferrazzi in Never Eat Alone, have suggested that being open about the challenges you face and the obstacles in your life is a good thing. It is therapeutic to share, it endears you to people when they read your personal stories, and as Zig Ziglar once said, if you relive it, you’ll really learn the lesson.
I’m brand new to Real Estate – my license finally came through in mid-December – and I’m living in a new city, where I knew one person who owned a home when I moved here in September. Not exactly optimal conditions for building your average real estate business, but then again I am not average, and I no intention of creating anything average.
I have met many people since moving here and I continue to grow my sphere of influence (thanks for the tips Keith), but it takes time to build a network that will spread my name through the right circles – let alone break into those circles.
Since I don’t know many people in the community, I’ve been focusing on pursuing private sellers (FSBO) – people who have their home for sale, but are selling it themselves (without using an agent) – as well as people interested in growing their wealth through real estate investments. Now, I got my first serious FSBO prospect in early January. I went over, met with them, explained what I could do for them, and probably through a combination of my greenness and the husband’s interest in trying to sell it himself, didn’t close the sale – but left with them complimenting my presentation, and telling me they would call me when they wanted to list.
I kept in contact with them over the next few weeks, sending them articles, dropping off information on homes that they might want to buy, market condition updates etc. While I was ‘pinging’ them, I didn’t get face to face with them as much as I wanted to – but I definitely tried!
These people were never home! I went over towards the end of their Open House – they weren’t home. I went over on a weekend afternoon – not home. Weekday Night – not home. Weekday afternoon – not home. Weekday morning – guess what, they weren’t home!
Every time I dropped something off, I’d get an email of phone call thanking me for it, and I knew that they would be ready to list soon.
Well, I called them last night, and the husband asked if he could call me back. By the time he did, and I got his message, it was past 10:00pm and I didn’t want to call them that late.
This Evening, after getting home from the fantastic Richard Robbins International event I went to in Toronto with Eitan and Ryan, I called them up, to return their call. Things were going great, until he told me things were settled down because they now had an agent. Dumbfounded, I asked who, and was told that they had listed with a top producer in my office (who didn’t know I was pursuing them as well) who also worked FSBOs, and when I called last night, they were doing the paperwork.
I considered getting angry, but that thought dissipated almost as quickly as it appeared (thanks for the positive thinking this morning Mark), and I wished him luck, and sent him an email asking him to keep me in mind for any of his friends or family that might need a Realtor.
Now, I have to tell you, I was upset for a bit. I knew they were going to list this week, and I felt I had provided them with good value while they tried to sell privately. This was my listing! Well, of course I didn’t get it, and I’m trying my darndest to turn this into a learning opportunity – after all, that’s the best use of your past experiences.
Here is what I’ve learnt:
- Keep prospecting as if you don’t have business, even when you think you have a solid lead that you’ll convert.
- Don’t do ton’s of work for people who aren’t clients when it comes at the expense of prospecting for new business or servicing clients.
- If I keep on providing value to people, my business will grow.
- You won’t get every listing – but if you let that get you down, you’ll get even less.
- Work harder than you think you need to.
- I can’t complain and make money at the same time, so I should stop complaining and go make money
- Instead of losing listings to Riz, I should take him out for lunch and learn from him!
Feel free to suggest some good lessons from this experience – help me learn!
Anyways, I feel much better after writing that, and I can’t wait to get into the office tomorrow to start calling and finding opportunities to provide value to the market.
Let the sunshine in