The 7 Problems Real Estate Agents are Looking to Solve as Business Owners | A Coach's Perspective
This morning, I had eXp Realty LLC agent, Darren Sager based out of New Jersey reach out to me and ask what are the 7 common problems real estate agents are looking to solve as a business owners from my perspective as a coach. While this question can be challenging and a case by case basis with the number of real estate agents in the industry, there are some patterns that rise to the surface. These 7 common problems that I will address below are exactly the reason every agent should hire a coach, find their tribe, and engage in training that brings value to their business.
7 Problems Real Agents are Looking to Solve as Business Owners
- What lead generation method(s) do I engage in to grow my business? Without leads an agent will not have a business, and depending on their financial stability this can place an agent into a predicament of being out of the business almost as soon as they get in. I've often seen stats that show 80% that enter the industry will be out in a period of 6 months. This all falls on the lack of leads, and ultimately not lead generating. When coaching agents on lead generation, the first question I will ask is...What are you willing to commit to with consistency? Also there must be an understanding that the results for the activities taken today, more likely than not, will show up 90 days out. Examples of lead generation: FSBO, Expireds, Just Listed Circle Dialing, Just Sold Circle Dialing, Vendor Networks, Geographic Farm, People Farm, Door-to-Door, Client Parties, Open Houses, Social Events, Community Events, Teaching and Speaking Opportunities, Social Media, New Construction, Corporate Relocation, Cold Calling, Sphere of Influence, Converting Tenants to Buyers, Online Lead Generation, Blog Posts with Lead Capture Forms, etc. An individual agent should take on no more than 3 lead generation methods. Taking on too many sources results in a breakdown of systems, and the "Jack of all trades is the master of none". Keep it simple, build systems to support lead generation and follow up, and be consistent.
- How do I carry out the lead generation method(s) I am willing to commit to in my business? The questions is exactly why you should hire a coach. Over the years I've been to numerous training events and conferences where the content was very superficial. Agents attending these events knew they wanted to do open houses as a lead generation method, yet they do not fully understand all he steps that go into hosting a successful open house. These agents with limited knowledge go out and attempt an open house, don't get the results, and then justify that open houses must not work for me or in my market. One of the most common issues and deterrents from conducting lead generation is not knowing the systems for carrying out a specific type of lead generation.
- How do I get more listings? Real estate agents have probably heard list to live and buy to die. Listings should be the focus for the agent truly wanting to grow a business over the long-term. Seeking out listings requires more effort than seeking out buyers. A business that is strong in obtaining listings is also the business that weathers market changes. This was seen in our market area during the downturn 2008 - 2010. Listings produce listings, and listings also develop buyer leads. Where agents struggle in obtaining the listings is not knowing how to lead generate for listings. Hiring a knowledgeable coach, training specific to obtaining listings, knowledgeable on scripts around pricing and commission objection handlers, and aligning actions taken to be listing-centric is key.
- What do I say to convert customers to clients, or what do I say in a prospecting conversation? This problem faced by a lot of real estate agents is a simple one to fix, yet it takes commitment on the part of agents. The answer is scripts. Most agents will not put any effort into scripts because they will say "it does not sound like me". Not knowing scripts, you're putting at risk the conversion from customer to client. If an agent can't handle an objection, they will lose the opportunity, or significantly increase their risk of losing an opportunity. Agents must know and practice their scripts. The best way to make this happen is find another agent with the same desire to get better at scripts, get time scheduled on the calendar, and practice daily 10 - 15 minutes. Practice the listing presentation. Practice the buyer presentation. Practice objection handlers. Practice with another agent, and stop practicing on clients. One of the most effective scripts for general prospecting is "who do you know that is thinking about buying a home, selling a home, or investing in real estate that I can help today".
- How do I manage my schedule? Coaching agents over the years, there is a pattern of agents saying they are too busy to take on anything else including lead generation. Yet, when you look at production, it is not in alignment with their goals. What often happens is agents find themselves doing busy work and equating it to being productive. One of the first things that agents need to do is time block. First time block for God, family, and any events (training) that is scheduled in advance that won't move for you. Immediately following, time block for lead generation. Next, schedule time in the calendar for follow up. Then make sure you pre-schedule appointments in your calendar (at least 10 a week with the goal of filling those with buyer and listing appointments). Last schedule in your admin time. If you're needing help or overwhelmed, leverage off things that do not make money for you. My recommendation for real estate agents is to hire a transaction coordinator to handle everything related to paperwork and compliance.
- What systems/tools should I be using in my business? Simple. Use the systems and tools that you will use consistently. I am always asked what CRM to use, and my first question is "what will you use consistently". Where do I find systems? Ask your coach, go get training on the specific topic your working to improve in, ask an agent that is having success with that part of the business, or attend agent led panels. Build systems that work for you and your business, and always be working to improve your systems over time. Building systems is not a one and done task. Tools are always changing so make sure you've built into your calendar training opportunities to get the latest information to maximize the use of your tools (again the tools you will stay consistent with in your business).
- Who is my support network? You've heard it mentioned here several times. Hire a coach. If it is not me, find a coach. A coach will help you look differently at your business. A coach is going to accelerate your progress by sharing their experience and many hours of being around growth-oriented individuals. Find your tribe. Going at your journey alone, you will hit a lot of speed bumps. Find those that will encourage you, have the same desire to grow, and stand in your corner when things get tough. This is a simple business. It is not an easy business. Plug into your broker. What opportunities do they have to support you? Ask questions. Your support network is really what you build, and don't necessarily depend on someone building that network for you. Take this one by the horns, and make it happen.
Other Challenges Facing Real Estate Agents
While the 7 problems listed above are seen as a general pattern in the real estate industry, as businesses owners advance and grow, other challenges come to mind. Here are a few of many:
- How do I build leverage in my business?
- What is the path to building a team, and is building a team the right decision?
- How do I keep up with the changes in technology in an industry that is being disrupted?
- What does my business look like one year from now, 3 years from now, 10 years from now, and what is my legacy?
- What are other income streams that I can create inside and outside my industry?
For more information on how to connect with me about coaching, visit Red Hawk Coaching, and click on the button to schedule a FREE business strategy call.
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