As in all of the blogs that I write with my ideal client in mind (YOU) I get most of my material from the Real Estate agents and Mortgage Lenders that I meet and interact with on a daily basis. Sometimes when I have some free time (what is that??) I call cross sales. If you don’t know what that is, that is the Northern Virginia Real Estate Agent that is on the other side of the transaction that we are closing…that is NOT our client…yet. I call these agents blind and thank them for allowing us to close the transaction, see how it went, and then talk to them about their Real Estate business/marketing and see where I can help and then set an appointment. I had a good conversation with an agent the other day so I thought I would put in a blog. Mind you, the conversation I’m about to share with you is being paraphrased but you will get the point.
Me: (Calling) Hello, is this Realtor A?
Realtor A: Yes…
Me: How are you? My name is Wade Vander Molen and I am the Director of Sales/Marketing for Stewart Title. The reason I’m calling is because we just closed your transaction on 123 Main St. How did it go?
Realtor A: Went great! Everything was fine…closed on time and my clients were happy.
Me: Cool! That is always a good thing. The other reason I’m calling is that I work with Realtors, just like you and help them with their Real Estate Marketing. I find out what it is you need most in your business and I help solve that issue so that you can save time, money, and gain more business going forward. I do this at no cost to you, just the opportunity to earn you business. Do you have a preferred Title Company?
Realtor A: Well…I do all of my own marketing and have been sending my deals to Title Company Y because my office has a venture with them. I have sent them most of my business over that last year or so.
Me: Ok…so when you say you do your own marketing…what have you been doing?
Realtor A: I send out postcards to my database for holidays and when baseball/football season starts and I have a nice email newsletter I send out each month. I pay a company and they create it…it looks nice.
Me: Ok…so you just market to your sphere. How big is it? Do you get a lot of referral business from them? Do you have a website for your Real Estate business?
Realtor A: My sphere is about 200 people. I get referrals from them…not as many as I would like but it has served me well thus far. I have a website…my company gives every agent a website so I use that.
Me: Ok…so what I’m hearing you say is that you get referrals but not as many as you want…and you have a website but its something that you don’t own. Do you get any online leads? What is on your site?
Realtor A: I own my site…my company gave it to me to use. It doesn’t cost me anything so I like that. I don’t get online leads…that is mostly useless to me. Most people do business face to face. My site has my information and a way for a person to email me if are looking to buy or sell a home…but that hasn’t happened.
Me: So your company gave you the site right? So what would happen if you left your company? Do you think that the site would go away??
Realtor A: Uhh…yeah I guess it would.
Me: Ok…I can really help you market more efficiently to your sphere that will save you time and money, but do you want more leads from other people who you don’t know? Like people in distressed property, FSBO’s, Renters…essentially people who have a need “right now” to either buy a home or sell?
Realtor A: Yeah that would be great. I’m not good at marketing to those people but yeah…it way better to market to people to have a need to buy or sell versus a shot gun approach. If you can help me with that Id work with Stewart Title.
Me: Cool! Let me ask you a question. The last time you needed to solve a problem or look for anything to buy what did you do?
Realtor A: I went online and looked it up. I bought a new car recently…a new Toyota.
Me: Very nice…so what was the process after you found what you wanted online?
Realtor A: Well, like most people I read the reviews online, found a few dealerships, compared prices, found the year i wanted, looked a cool video of it, and then I finally went down to the dealership and worked out a deal.
Me: Ok…so what I hear you saying is that you looked up everything online first, read review and the KBB Value, saw the pictures, watched a video, found the dealership that had the car you wanted, then you bought the car. What was the very last thing you did before you bought the car…when you arrived at the dealership?
Realtor A: I spoke to the car sales guy.
Me: Did it matter who it was? Did you call the dealership and ask for their best car salesman?
Realtor A: Ha! Heck no…once I knew what I wanted I just wanted to buy it and go home.
Me: Do you think consumers…just like you…do the same thing with Real Estate when they have a need to buy or sell their home? Did you know that over 90% of people go to the Internet first BEFORE making any decision to buy/sell/or contact an Agent? This applies to even your Sphere. Most likely they contact you AFTER they have being doing their homework online. The scary part for you is that 80% of those people will choose the1st agent they find who can help them with their need…solve their problem, just like you did with the car. Make sense?
Realtor A: (Pause)… wow that is very interesting…never thought of it like that. So you can help me with this?
Me: Yes. What does the Title Company that you have been sending your business to do to help you grow your business?
Realtor A: Well, they have an online calculator and they do mobile closings for me and the girl I use is knowledgeable.
Me: Ok…that sounds more like a job description of a person who works at a Title Company. Providing good service and having knowledge is an expectation. So, what does your Title Company do to help you grow your business? What do they do to help you gain more buyers, sellers, get found online, provide you leads, and teach you HOW TO become a better Realtor?
Realtor A: Uhh… nothing I guess when you put it like that.
Me: Ok…I would like 30 minutes of your time to meet in person in chat. We can do lunch or coffee. I will walk you through not only what you can do to be “Found” by people looking for you online, but I can provide you leads of people who need your services right now, and how to reach them with a high return. Sound good? If I can do that, would you consider a new Title Company relationship?
Realtor A: Yeah for sure. I need more business and if you help me of course I will use you going forward. I’ve never had a Title Company offer this to me before. I like it!
Me: Great, looking forward to meeting with you! (we set the appointment) Hangs up the phone.
This is a fairly common conversation I have with Realtors who need help but don’t realize it. Is this you? Helping agents grow their business, add value to themselves, and become more savvy is what we offer to those who want it at Stewart Title.
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