What's Your Why?

At the core of anybody I've ever worked with that's achieved extraordinary results, there's a compelling reason why they choose to achieve that in essence, their purpose. I want to just put you on a quick scenario to illustrate this.

Let's just say that that there's two 20 story buildings, both exactly the same height, and there's a board that goes from one rooftop to the other rooftop. Now imagine it's five times the width of a normal balance beam. Let's say I'm on the rooftop of one building. You're on the rooftop of the other building. I've got $10,000 in cash. I'd say, if you can walk across this board without falling off either side, I'm going to give you this $10,000.

How many of you guys would actually take that risk? Now, let's imagine that it's windy, that it's raining and there's lightning all around. See nobody in their right mind would take that risk yet. Let's change the circumstances. Let's say you're on one building all by yourself, nobody else around, and your two year old toddler, maybe your niece, your nephew, your grandson, your granddaughter, your son, or your daughter is on the other rooftop - and that building's on fire. Nobody else around. What would you do?

I'd venture to guess that you would do whatever it takes to get across that board. Somehow some way to save that little baby. I know I would, by the way, even if it's windy, even if it's raining, even if there's lightning all around.

My input to you is to discover your why. Let that flame burn with white hot intensity, because that becomes the fuel that gets you across the finish line - and it doesn't just get you across the finish line, it gets you across the finish line first, and that is what you want, right?

For more information about icon coaching, I encourage you to engage in a free strategy session. You'll discover many things about yourself and your business, and I promise it'll be worth your time until next time. Be on purpose, be productive and be powerful.


4 Step Formula To Overcoming Objections

Here's an effective strategy that will undoubtedly help you improve your career trajectory as well as your personal income. Now, this is the four step formula to handling objections, and it's really quite simple:

4 Steps To Overcoming Objections:

  1. Acknowledgement: When you hear an objection, whether it be from a buyer or seller, the first thing you want to do is merely acknowledge the objection. So they say, well, I want a lower commission. Maybe it's a question. So you'd like a lower commission. So it's an acknowledgement. See, seek first to understand then to be understood.
  2. Isolate The Objection: Second, what I want you to do is isolate the objection. Meaning other than just getting a lower commission, is there any other reason you wouldn't do business with me today?
  3. Handle The Objection: The third is to handle the objection and there's many strategies. We can teach you here at ICON Coaching on how to handle that particular objection.
  4. Ask For The Sale: Probably the most important step in the process is once again, ask for the sale.

I trust that this little tip is going to help you improve your career's trajectory and your personal income. And until next time be on purpose, be productive and be.


The Psychology Of Selling

I just wanted to share a simple strategy with you that I call the psychology of selling. Now the challenge with most salespeople is that they approach a prospect who by the way, is in a positive present mindset, which means if the prospect keeps doing what they've always done, well, they're going to get to this positive future. Am I right?

So they approach this, this prospect who's in a positive present mindset. They say, well, wait a minute, you engage me. And guess what you're going to, you're going to have so much, a much better or a positive future. So that's not how changes facilitate it. That's not how a sale is made at least from a psychological standpoint.

So, rather recognizing that the prospect is in a positive present mindset. We think about it a for sale by owner selling the home on their own. If they keep doing what they're doing, they're going to get the result that they desire. So rather than attempting to move them to that positive future mindset, what we get to do is we move them to a negative present mindset by asking questions, like, tell me what's the greatest challenge in selling the home yourself instead of engaging a real estate agent or maybe making statements like, do you realize that for sale by owners actually receive on average 17 per percent, less than those that actually list with a real estate agent.

So, we moved them to this negative present from the negative present. Then psychologically, we must move them to a negative future, meaning continue doing the same thing, expecting a different result is the definition of insanity, right? And once we've got them to that negative future mindset, well now finally, they're open to a more positive future, which is engaging you to be the real estate agent and trust. Until we talk next time, I want you to be on purpose, be productive and be powerful.


Why The Same 'Ol Marketing Approach Doesn't Work Anymore

Learn the new methods that will actually help you grow your real estate business.

The world is saturated in advertisements of every media. Drive down the road and count how many real estate signs and billboards you see. Quite a few, right? It can be hard to make yourself stand out from the crowd. Marketing requires creativity and new approaches to get a person’s attention, the same old stuff won’t cut it. You can’t just throw an advertisement into the world and hope for the best, it’s going to get swept up in the sea of ads just like it, or end up in front of people who have no interest.

Luckily, this over-saturation can work in your favor. When people do go looking for a real estate agent to help them buy or sell a home they can be overwhelmed by all the options. This is your chance to show them why you are the one they need. You can do so by making promises you can actually keep with your skills - you can sell their not-so-great house, you can find their dream home. When you have the expertise to back up your position, people will come to you. They’ll tell their friends what a fantastic job you did, they’ll see the results for themselves.

The first step to good marketing is a good product. And when you’re selling your services there are always ways you can improve and develop those services.

 


Productivity Hack: The 4D Approach

Use this incredible hack to improve your business operations, increase your productivity and of course, make more money.

This is very simple, and it's called The 4D Approach. Let's get into it and break down what each of the 4D's are and how you can use them in your business.

DITCH IT

Ask yourself, is this something that I actually need to do, or can I ditch it? The value in this first productivity hack will change your business and your life forever.

Let me share with you an example of how this played out in my business...

I was working as a buyer's specialist and closing over 100 transactions per year. As you can imagine, that took quite a bit of time and I was thinking to myself, "do I really need to be attending these inspections?" Each inspection would take an average of three hours and therefore, with 100 transactions a year, I was spending 300 hours or about 7.5 weeks worth of work that I  was spending waiting for the inspector to do their job, and really if you think about it, I couldn't have made any impact anyway. "If the furnace was broken, the furnace was broken." I wasn't going to be able to do anything about it.

I talked with my broker and he believed that I should be attending inspections as all buyer's agents do. However, I knew this couldn't be right, so I asked our council if I needed to attend these inspections. I just couldn't let it go because I knew if I could ditch this, my productivity would sky-rocket. And sure enough, our council agreed, "Shon, you do not need to attend inspections." 

And there it was, the answer I was looking for. So, after a little education with my broker and the listing agents, I never went on another home inspection again. I was able to regain 7.5 weeks of my life and reallocate that time to lead generation and lead follow-up.

Now, let's get to the next of the 4D Approach...

DELEGATE IT

Ask yourself, Is there someone else on your team that can do it for you? If you're a single agent without a team, think a little deeper. Who else will benefit when you close a transaction? You've got your title company, mortgage company, home inspector... all of them would likely bend over backward to help you and ensure you keep sending them more business.

I went to my mortgage lender, as I realized that I was spending an enormous amount of my time following up with buyer and seller prospects that were not ready to buy or sell with me yet. I discussed with my lender and told them, "I'd love to give you the chance to earn the business of all of my buyer prospects. I'd like you to follow up with all of my C-type prospects until they either buy or die."

Of course, they loved the idea and wanted to earn the business of my prospects, so it worked out well. Not only were my prospects being followed up with, by those I consider partners in my business, but it allowed me to delegate and free even more time.

Next up...

DO IT LATER

The art of letting some things go until later is a hard nut to crack. But, it's an important productivity hack that will allow you to remain focused and invest your time where it's most valuable.

As you build your time blocks for your perfect week schedule, you will be confronted with distractions. For example, as you're busy with lead generation, inevitably, there will be a ping in the lower right corner of your computer screen. This notification says, "Hey Shon, you've got a new email." Now, if I decide to open that and go down that rabbit hole, I will more often than not, be stuck in my email inbox 20-30 minutes later. And even worse, you're then managing someone else's priorities, not your own.

Block time, hold that time for it's for, and "do it later" to things that come up in the middle.

The final D...reserved in the fourth spot as it should be...

DO IT NOW

At times there are tasks or "things" that pop up and must be dealt with in the moment, but it's imperative for your own sake to limit them to only mandatory tasks. Do your best to use one of the first three D's and reserve this fifth for only the necessary MUSTS.

If you decide to say yes to any distractions or non-dollar productive tasks, then you need to replace that time block on your calendar. Regain the time that was interrupted to ensure you get every minute of productivity out of your day and week.

We believe this will be a great addition to your business and allow you to get in touch with more prospects, close more transactions and make more money.


Increase Lead Conversion

Real estate buyer calls are like gold to agents. Getting a real prospect on the phone is the goal of every successful real estate agent. One way to accomplish this is floor time in the office, but there are other methods as well. Real estate agents spend a great deal of time and money with marketing strategies designed to get a prospect to call them.

Most agents realize that a strong online presence complete with a feed of active properties taking directly from their local MLS (Multiple Listing Service) is a minimum requirement. As a result, not only are listing agents receiving calls from yard signs and advertisements, but buyers are also calling based on web searches as well. Regardless of how the call is generated, most agents are still unprepared for how to convert that phone call into a client.

In my new video, “Increasing Your Lead Conversion,” I help real estate agents design a strategy for converting a cold phone call to a warm prospect. By understanding the techniques for answering the questions posed by the buyer, real estate agents can learn how to direct that phone conversation to ensure it ends with an appointment.

Why is the Buyer Calling?

Before you develop a plan to handle the call, it’s important to understand why the potential buyer is calling in the first place. Believe it or not, typically the buyer is not calling to see the property; they are calling with 2 goals in mind:

  1. To eliminate the property as an option
  2. To eliminate the agent as a possible representative

Don’t believe it?

It might seem counter-intuitive to bother to call someone with such a negative intent, but it’s true that most buyers call with the hope that they can eliminate a few options. Buyers are busy; they want to cross options off their list as quickly as possible so they can spend their time on homes which actually fit their criteria.

Eliminate the Property

If you pay attention to the questions buyers ask, you can see that they always start with questions designed to eliminate the home.

  • What is the price?
  • How many bedrooms does it have?
  • Does it have a pool?
  • What school district would my kids attend?
  • How close is it to the freeway?
  • How big is the lot?
  • Is there a main-floor bedroom?

These are qualifying questions. The buyers already know some information about the property and like it enough to call, so now they are asking about other features which are clearly important to them. In other words…what is it missing?

Eliminate the Agent

Typically a buyer will call because they have not yet chosen a buyer’s agent. There is a fear of the “salesman” who will somehow cast a spell which will cause them to buy something they do not want. Of course, we know this is not true, but the buyers on the phone are wary. We need to immediately put them at ease and create an atmosphere in which we can start to build rapport and get the appointment.

Real estate agents lose opportunities by doing 3 things.

  1. They answer the question directly and the phone call ends
  2. They ignore the question and blab on about themselves and their expertise

In both cases, the agent has only managed to frustrate the caller and created a sense of annoyance. This is NOT the way to demonstrate experience or convert a phone caller into a client. How you respond to the questions needs to be a carefully crafted strategy, one that you practice and can execute seamlessly.

Transition Strategy

Building rapport and credibility takes time, so it’s critical that you keep them on the phone long enough to establish a simple relationship. This is why it is so important to know how to master the first 5 seconds by employing a transition strategy.

A well-designed transition strategy allows the conversation to flow and continue. If a caller asks the price, and you simply answer it, then they have what they came for and the call ends. Instead, stall a bit and ask follow-up questions while assuring the caller you are searching for the answer to their question. For example:

I’m calling about the home at 123 Main Street, can you tell me the price of the home?”
“That’s a great property, we’re getting a lot of calls on that home, you must be one of the neighbors?”
“No, I just drove by and liked the neighborhood.”
“It’s a great community; do you live in the area?”

 

As you can see, the agent has started to gently lead the caller into new qualifying questions which give the agent more information about them. Let’s see how this call continues:

No, but I like the school district. Can you tell me how much it’s listed for?”
“Of course, let me look that up for you. How many children do you have in your household?”
“2 kids, 10 and 6”
“Those are such fun ages. How many bedrooms are you looking for?”

Probably 3 or 4, we’re just not sure we can afford the neighborhood, so we were wondering about the price.”
“I completely understand. What price range are you comfortable with?”
“We’d like to stay under $500,000.”

As you can see, the agent is gathering more information that they will need to close the caller on an appointment. So now the agent will set a time to meet by offering something of real value to the caller:

The home at 123 Main Street is listed at $550,000 and I’d be happy to arrange a showing for you. Also, while we were talking, I also did a quick search of active listings in that area for you. There are 6 active listings in that neighborhood with 3-4 bedrooms priced under $500,000. Why don’t we find a time for you to stop by my office and we can view them online and see if any of them fit your needs?

Are weekdays or weekends best for you?”

Close! The agent is offering something of value which fits the criteria they shared. By ending with an “either-or” question, it’s almost impossible to refuse. If the caller does refuse the appointment, then they will offer an objection which again allows the agent to uncover more information, such as “Oh we’re not really ready to move yet.” Ok…so when will they be ready? Maybe they would like to meet and see what options are available so they start to understand the market.

As you can see, using a transition strategy of questions and answers, the agent has turned a quick question into the start of a relationship which will lead to more clients and more closings. That is why it is so important to me to help you understand more about this strategy and how to use it today to create better prospects and more sales.

I'm Shon Kokoska founder of ICON COACHING an elite training program for real estate agents. It is my goal to help Real Estate professionals reach their career goals, and find success. The only way to do this is with hard work and proven practices. For more life changing tools you can use to accelerate your business, register for the Icon of the Month Webinar now. Seats fill up quickly so do not hesitate. Change your life today.- Register Here.


The New ABC's of Selling

Ever since the famous scene in Glengarry Glen Ross where Blake, played by Alec Baldwin, defined the ABCs of Selling…. as “Always Be Closing”, that phrase has haunted sales professionals everywhere. Closing is scary, regardless of how you dress up the words. The idea of the hard sell, or forceful close and “kill” tactic is extremely upsetting to both the real estate agent and client. But there is a better way, in my new video from Icon Coaching, “The NEW ABCs of Selling,” I show agents how to use the old term in a new, modern way that benefits both the real estate agent and client.

The NEW ABCs of Selling are:

  • A – Action
  • B – Benefit
  • C – Commitment

It’s a simple strategy which can be used over and over during the agent/client relationship to move the process along in a meaningful and non-threatening manner.

Action: What specific action do you want your client to take?

Benefit: What is the benefit to your client for taking this action?

Commitment: Get the client’s commitment to take the action.

Using this method you can employ this strategy all along the way and move through the sales cycle effortlessly and deliberately. Let’s explore Icon Coaching’s strategy by walking through the ABCs with a potential home buyer and see how easy it is to move the client forward.

Action

What specific action do you want your client to take? “Buy a home from me!” Ok, yes, of course, you want to get to the close, every good real estate agent does, but remember, we are going to look at the sales cycle one action at a time. What’s the very first step in that cycle? Every sale will start with the first appointment, so that’s going to be your first “Action”: setting the appointment.

So in our example, let’s talk about the appointment. As you begin to use Icon’s NEW ABCs of Selling, you will begin by telling your client that you would like to meet and talk about their real estate needs. You might say,

“What I would like to do is find a time to sit down and talk so I can learn more about your real estate needs and goals.”

An Action item is a statement of intent. Keep it simple and straightforward and clear. The Action item should not be vague or open ended, be clear in your statement. A poor example might be, “We should talk more about your needs.” Notice in this statement there is no concrete, immediate action statement. It merely suggests that there should be more discussion vs a specific call to get together.

As you start to move along in the sales cycle, the Action item will naturally change. The Action item could be actions like:

  • Visit listings
  • Write an offer or counter offer
  • Ask for repairs

At each stage of the process, take the ABCs one step at a time until the last one results in handing the client the keys to their new home.

Benefit

After you make your Action statement, offer your client a Benefit for performing the Action. My video, “The NEW ABCs of Selling,” shows you how to answer the question forming in the client’s mind, “why should I get together with this agent?” In other words, what’s in it for the client? Answer this question right up front.

“What I will do is to bring all the listings which meet your basic criteria and we can use this list as a starting point to refine the search, so you can make the best use of your time.”

What did that statement indicate to the client? You stated that the Benefit was to save your client time and effort by providing useful information they can use to narrow down their search.

As you move along in the sales cycle, you might offer benefits.

  • Write an offer so your client does not lose a home to another buyer
  • Accept the request for repairs response because they gave us all the important corrections we asked for
  • Let’s ask for an extension to allow us a little extra time to close

Proceeding from a genuine interest in helping your client make the best possible decisions along the way, you will offer the Benefit of each Action you request.

Commitment

The Commitment should be the easiest part of the NEW ABCs of Selling, yet most real estate agents still shy away from asking for it. If you’ve set the stage properly with the Action and Benefit, then the client should easily want to commit in order to gain the Benefit that the Action gives them. Offer a Benefit that they want and your client will gladly take the Action which provides it.

Going back to our example, we’ve defined the Action and its Benefit, now it’s time to get the client’s commitment. I always suggest giving the client an “either – or” option.

“Would weekends or weekdays be best for your schedule?”

Notice we give them options that both lead to the commitment you want them to make, in this case, the appointment. You should not ask an open ended question which leaves them without a clear decision, clear commitment. A few examples of the open ended question are:

“When will you have some time to meet?”
“Would you like to set a time to meet?”
“What do you think?”

In each case, you are giving the client the ability to say “no” to the commitment. To successfully use the NEW ABCs of Selling technique, you have to offer options that allow your client to make the commitment. Remember that you are offering something of value to your client; it’s in their best interest to make the commitment, so help them make it. That’s part of your job as a professional real estate agent.

Conclusion

Icon Coaching’s NEW ABCs of Selling takes the old, tired, pushy rules of selling and turns it on its head. The NEW ABCs, utilizing the process of Action – Benefit – Commitment helps you move your client through the sale cycle one step at a time in a methodical manner which helps both agent and client.


Understanding Your Core Motivation

Why is the sky blue? Why do I have to eat my vegetables? Why can’t I wear my flip flops to church? Why? Why? Why? Once we grow up, often we stop asking ourselves “why” yet this can be one of the most powerful methods for success in life. My video below encourages you to ask; “What’s Your Why,” and helps you to understand what motivates you to be successful in your career and in your life.

Can you remember moments in your life when you’ve had a very clear purpose or intent? Probably it was a moment of crisis or emergency and you simply HAD to succeed. The goal was clear and you found a determination that was clear and strong and you handled the issue. Imagine the power of that level of intensity and focus in your real estate career. What if you could tap into those reserves and use that power in growing your business? I address this kind of motivation by asking “What’s Your Why”. What is it that compels you to success?

Finding your “why” can help you set goals which will help you achieve greater success than you might think possible. Are you motivated to pay off your home? Send your kids to college? Take that vacation of a lifetime? Own your own brokerage? Why are you a real estate agent in the first place? Is it for the financial opportunity? The flexibility which comes from being your own boss? The freedom to attend all of your son’s baseball games? Why? What is your why? While you might not discover your personal “why” or” why’s” overnight, you can start to learn more about your motivations by asking yourself some questions.

What excites you?

What inspires you?

In your personal life, it could be a beautiful sunset or peaceful morning. It’s what makes you feel alive. In your real estate business, it might be as simple as the thrill of giving the keys to a first time home buyer at the close of escrow. Maybe you are motivated to earn money which allows you to contribute to a local shelter. Perhaps you love to mentor new agents and watch them grow in their success. What are you passionate about

What are your strengths and weaknesses?

Time to look at your innate talents and shortcomings honestly. The most successful people are those who combine their passion with their natural abilities. By utilizing your personal skills in your profession, you’re more likely to enjoy your career and success is far easier to achieve when you like what you’re doing each day. Remember in school that when you liked the subject matter you got better grades? Those were the classes with readings that interested you and most likely appealed to your natural inclinations. An analytical person is more apt to enjoy a science class while a visionary would excel in an art class.

Where can you make a difference?

What do you contribute to your career which has the biggest impact on your business? Where are you already being successful? While many real estate agents loathe the idea of door knocking, there are many who have found great success doing just that. They love to get out into the community and meeting people. They are successful in this activity because they genuinely love what they are doing. What are you currently doing that is bringing you success….and what takes you away from doing more of it? As you continue learning about your “why”, you also need to see what problems you gain satisfaction from solving and what activities you really enjoy which make a difference.

How do you measure success in life and your career?

How do you define success? Living with purpose and intent involves knowing the goal. A clear understanding of what you consider success to look like it the only way to achieve it. Focus on the things that matter most to you. While everyone yearns to feel financially secure, normally the things that bring people the greatest happiness are the intangible things of life…health, family and peace. Real estate agents typically place freedom high on the list of things that bring them satisfaction. Learning how you measure your personal success can change your life in tangible ways. By clearly knowing your purpose, you can set concrete goals and activities to reach it.

Asking the question, “What’s Your Why,” starts the conversation. What motivates you to take risks and be successful? Take the example of two tall buildings with a beam connecting them. At first, I ask if it would be worth risking the fall and certain death to walk across the beam if you were offered $10,000. Probably not. Then I change the story. In the second instance, the other building is on fire, and your child is on the roof with no way to escape. Now would you risk going across the beam to save your child? Absolutely! What changed? The motivation! Same activity, different motivation. That is why it is so important to understand the “why”, or motivation that will propel you in your real estate career.

Knowing your purpose will push you to take on new challenges and overcome obstacles to succeed. Just as you were able to do in the crisis we spoke about at the beginning of this article, now you are using your talents to make positive changes which will bring you further in your real estate career. A force for good, using your passions in your daily business activities will not only help you enjoy your work more but also see better results…just like that class that you loved in school.


Top 3 Buyer Objection Handlers

In every market, buyers will offer objections at some point during the appointment. Even in a seller’s market, the fear of making the wrong decision, spending too much money and just moving forward can be intimidating for some buyers.

As a professional real estate agent, it’s important to realize that most buyer objections are really just a hesitation to move forward based on the fear of making the wrong decision. When the buyer is fearful, for whatever reason, they will offer objections to the agent. In my new video, “Top 3 Buyer Objection Handlers” I discusses the most common buyer objections and how to overcome them and help your client move forward.

Your success or failure as a real estate agent will largely depend on how you handle objections. You cannot rely on a buyer walking into the right home and then asking you to write a great offer. Even if they eventually buy that home, if you do not learn the skills necessary to guide your client to the offer, it’s likely they will buy the home using another agent. Shon emphasizes that each meeting with a client is either an opportunity for you to convince them they should work with you or an opportunity for them to convince themselves that they should not. So let’s talk about buyer objections and how to overcome them.

“I need to talk to my wife/husband”

Of course the best way to avoid this situation is to have both spouses present at all home showings and meetings, but sometimes that isn’t possible. With such busy schedules, often you will only have access to one spouse who spends time prescreening properties for the family. Relocations clients are another example of a time when you might only have access to one spouse during showings. When only one spouse has seen a property, it’s perfectly reasonable to request time to discuss the home with their better half. As a professional real estate agent, your job now is to determine if this is really a cover for deeper reservations or an attempt to delay a decision.

In our video we describe this tactic as the “good-guy, bad-guy” approach. The buyer (good-guy) would be happy to move forward, but they are unsure that their spouse (bad-guy) would agree. Rather than attempt to pressure your client into making a decision which could be contrary to their spouse’s wishes, start by assuring them that you completely understand. This is a reasonable request and you are happy to accommodate. Your goal now is two-fold: 1) ensure there are no other objections you have yet to uncover and 2) turn your buyer into your advocate with their spouse.

My suggestion? The first question you should ask is, “If your spouse is ok with the home/property/deal, are you ok?” This does a couple of things. First, it is designed to discover any other objections and second, asks your buyer to take ownership of the decision as your advocate. If there are other objections, you can now address them directly and if not, it’s time to close the next appointment with the missing spouse.

“When is a good time to get together with your spouse? Are weekdays or weekends better for them?”

Then close on the next appointment and move forward.

“I only work with listing agents” 

In almost all cases, the buyer’s agent commission is paid for as part of the listing agreement and comes from the seller’s proceeds. This means that there is no reason why a buyer would want to enter such a serious transaction unrepresented by their own agent. Wanting to work with the listing agent is therefore based on the belief that they will save money by obtaining part of the listing agent’s commission either as a reduction of price or rebate.

This is the time to educate your client on listing agreements and the fiduciary duty the listing agent has to their seller. First he suggests reminding the buyer that the list price is chosen by the seller in consultation with their agent. They chose the price together and typically the list price is higher than they really expect to receive. A buyer’s agent will pull comparable property sales and can uncover an over-priced home.

Even when writing an offer for the buyer, the listing agent’s first duty is to the seller and they might or might not provide all the comps of the area. They have a contractual obligation to sell the home for the highest possible price; will they show the buyer all the available data or just the homes which support their list price?

Discuss the value of being represented by their own agent. Would they appear in court without their own representation? Buying a home is typically the largest financial transaction of their lifetime; don’t they want to have their own advocate? Remind them that saving 1% of the commission on a home that could be over-priced by 5% is not really saving anything. Add to this the on-going need for negotiations after the offer acceptance, repair requests or appraisal issues and you can help your buyer understand that they could be losing thousands of dollars by working with the listing agent who is only working for the benefit of their seller.

“I have a friend/relative who is an agent and I really should use them.”

Ironically, the fact that the buyer is already out looking at homes with you probably means they do not trust the friend or relative’s experience. They don’t want to offend their friend, but they don’t fully trust that they will get the best service or information from them. They plan to find the right home and then have their friend/relative write the offer. In this video, “Top 3 Buyer Objection Handlers,” we discusses how to handle this objection. The fact is that the reason the buyer wants to use their friend/relative is because they are worried that if they do no, it will affect their relationship. Our video emphasizes that you have to move them away from this belief into one which associates a negative impact on the relationship if they work with their friend/relative.

“I can understand why you are concerned about offending your friend/relative. Have you ever been in the position to loan money to a friend/relative and it ended up ruining your relationship? Real estate is a complicated transaction, regardless of how straightforward things appear, there is always the chance that something could go wrong. In my case, I would expect you to sue me if I did something wrong…but would you be able to sue your friend/relative?”

I suggest suggest that you close by offering a 25% referral fee to the friend/relative. That way the buyer can feel good about giving their friend/relative something for doing nothing, and also work with an agent they trust…you.

 

Overcoming objections is a part of a successful career in real estate. Preparing to handle objections in advance is the best way to manage them when presented. Icon coaching gives you the tools in which allow you to be prepared and successfully handle objections and move your client forward.

I'm Shon Kokoska founder of ICON COACHING an elite training program for real estate agents. It is my goal to help Real Estate professionals reach their career goals, and find success. The only way to do this is with hard work and proven practices. For more life changing tools you can use to accelerate your business, register for the Icon of the Month Webinar now. Seats fill up quickly so do not hesitate. Change your life today.- Register Here.


Top 3 Marketing Tips for Real Estate Agents

  1. Put yourself out there.

This may seem like the most obvious tip, but it needs to be said. If you want to market your services, then you actually have to put yourself out there. Put your sign in the lawn, pass out business cards, make a website. Marketing starts with you being proactive.

 

  1.    Make sure you have an online presence.

Everyone uses the internet to access information, that means when they go looking for you, a search engine is one of the first things they’ll try. Make sure you have something for them to find. You don’t have to have your own website, but a professional blog or Facebook page is a good start. Put up your picture, phone number, email, messenger - make yourself as easy to get ahold of as possible, and be social!

 

  1.   Word of mouth.

Usually, when someone goes looking for a real estate agent, they’ll ask their friends who they would recommend. Word of mouth is the oldest, and still most effective, form of marketing. It’s important to make a good impression, even if it’s on people you’re not working with. Say hello, shake hands, tell people your name and what you do, it can make all the difference.


How To Host a Successful Open House

Set the stage.

It can be hard to picture the potential in a house. How often had you heard a potential buyer say something like, “I like this bedroom, but I don’t think our bed will fit in it.” or “We have a big family, will this dining room fit everyone?”

Properly staging the house will show people just how utilized a space can be. If the house has an unsatisfying paint job or no real key features you can fill it with decor so that buyers can see the life they can put into the house. Even simple things like freshly baked cookies or some febreeze can help improve a space.

 

Be proactive.

You don’t want to be pushy or follow people around during an open house, but make sure you are available in a common area to address questions and concerns. Let people know they can contact you later if something comes up. It’s also important to acknowledge all members of a potential buying group . . . not just the person you assume will be signing the check. If there are kids ask them what they liked about the house, speak with any present adults about their thoughts and questions.

 

Ask your own questions.

“Any concerns about the house?” “What did you like about it?” Ask your own questions to gauge reactions to the home. If you hear a common concern keep popping up it might be something you can address or fix to help the house sale.

 


How to Increase Your Productivity & Profit as a Real Estate Agent

Are you tired of the same old real estate training programs?  Or, listening to some guru telling you what to do that has never even sold real estate?  Me too.

Welcome to ICON Coaching and thank you for taking just a quick moment to understand the value of what we do.

See, When you engage in our free training like the ICON of the month or paid training events like the ICON Conference or our ICON Mastermind session, you’ll quickly identify strategies, systems and tools that you can implement into your existing business models and quickly double, triple or even quadruple your income.  You’ll expand your team quickly and increase the value that you provide to your prospects, clients and sphere of influence.

Undoubtedly, most real estate agents struggle because they aren’t consistent with their Lead Generation.  Or they lack the ability to follow up with and nurture prospects that aren’t ready to buy or sell with them today.  Or even worse, their sales presentation skills aren’t systemized producing a consistent and predictable result so their conversion rates struggle.  The bottom line is that they aren’t making enough money to stay in business.  Or, they are making enough money and they’re working 60-80 hours a week because they lack the systems and models to stabilize their production.  OUCH.

I know this because I’ve been there and done all of that.  I know how challenging it is to find the motivation to lead generate every day.  I know that gut wrenching feeling of following up with a prospect a few days or even a few weeks too late to regrettably learn that they just went under contract with another realtor.

My team and I sold over 4,000 homes before I made the decision to become a fulltime trainer and coach and I’ve since coached, trained or consulted with over 100,000 realtors.  I’ve learned the methodology of the highest producers in the industry and it’s, as I see it, my purpose to share this knowledge with every realtor on the face of the planet.  You see, when the market shifted in late 2006, I literally lost everything.  I went from making millions of dollars per year to the deepest darkest place of depression I’ve ever experienced.  In fact, it was so painful that I was at one point adding up my life insurance policies to see if my family would be OK if I wasn’t here.  In that moment, I found my WHY, my purpose.  What saved me was the thought that if I could learn something and share it with others that would keep them out of a position like I found myself in, that it was my calling in life.

Each and every one of us has many choices for education, as well as where and how we invest our resources and time.  Without question, ICON Coaching is the right choice because we learn and share the models and systems of those real-world ICONs that are actually doing it no matter their brokerage  affiliation.  These ICONS have been selected because of their results in real estate and their desire and willingness to share.  ICON Coaching is the only HUB of real world real estate knowledge that exists today.

Now let’s face it.  Time is our greatest resource and I can only imagine that you’re concerned about investing your time into yet another training event or program.  When you MAKE THE DECISION to engage in one of our free or paid events you have my commitment to deliver proven best practices that you can implement immediately and increase your productivity and profit.  It’s a decision that will pay huge dividends.


Converting Incoming Calls

Millions of dollars are spent each year by real estate agents to attract leads. Known as “pull marketing” the main goal is to create a situation where the prospect calls you directly. Website SEO techniques and blogging, as well as more traditional advertising such as real estate magazines and newspaper spreads, are just some of the many ways real estate companies and agents are using to pull in those prospects.

Yet even with all the time and money invested in marketing, if those leads don’t turn into sales then it’s worthless. Here we will explain why real estate agents are not converting their leads into clients and how to increase your conversion rate by handling these calls/leads properly.

Why Prospects Call

Before we talk about how to properly convert the leads, it’s important to understand why the buyer is calling in the first place. Prospects call real estate agents to do 3 things:

  1. Eliminate the property
  2. Eliminate the agent

Does this sound strange? It’s true! Buyers are trying to eliminate options so that they can narrow down their options and spend time only on the properties that might actually suit their needs. Studies show that only 1% of buyers actually buy the property they call the agent about, so if you don’t convert that lead into a client, you have only a 1% chance at making a sale.

3 Keys to Lead Conversion

How can you increase your lead conversion rate and grow sales? There are 3 keys to lead conversion that will dramatically increase your conversion rate.

  1. Speed of response
  2. Number of attempts to reach the lead
  3. Knowing what to say when you reach the lead

WAV Group conducted a study called, “Agent Responsiveness Study Reveals Critical Flaws in Real Estate Lead Response,” in which they sampled 384 brokers across 11 states. The researchers pretended to be leads, and asked about listings on the broker’s websites. What they found was that:

  • Average response time was 15 ½ hours
  • Average number of call back attempts was 1.5
  • 48% of buyer inquiries were never responded to at all

Of course, we can easily see why these leads were not converted.

Speed of Response

How quickly you respond to the lead is the number one determinant as to whether you convert that lead into a client or not. In a survey done by the California Association of Realtors asked consumers how quickly they expected to hear back from a real estate agent when they called/emailed. 59% said they expected an instant response. The odds of reaching a lead drop by 100 times by just waiting 30 minutes vs calling back in 5 minutes.

Of course, it can be hard to drop what you’re doing and respond immediately. But when you realize that 35-50% of sales go to the agent who responded the fastest, it’s easy to see that this is the single most important aspect to converting that lead into a client. While we can’t be all places at once, with advances in technology, concierge services, and auto-response options, letting a prospect know that we received the lead and appreciate their interest, we have some options to cut response time dramatically.

Number of Attempts

As the WAV study showed, most agents give up very quickly when responding to leads. Real estate agents who have the greatest success converting leads into clients call/email 8-12 times. Remember that these are warm leads; they reached out to you first. You are simply trying to respond and help them. Keeping this in mind can help you find the motivation to keep calling/emailing until you reach the lead.

What Should You Say?
One of the biggest problems most real estate agents have is that when they do reach the lead, they don’t know what to say. Worse, they often say the wrong thing. Most leads are inquiring about a property they have seen either online or from a yard sign. They are typically calling to ask about that property.

As we’ve already learned, buyers are typically calling to eliminate the property. When you add that only 1% of home buyers buy the home they call an agent about…it’s critical that you are prepared to offer the prospect something of value so that you can continue building the relationship. Here is an example;

“Hi, this is _____ with _____. Thank you for taking my call. I’m calling to update my files to see if you’re still in the market to ….BUY A HOME… or find out if you’ve already purchased something?”

That’s it! Simple and direct. Most importantly, it opens the conversation up with a purpose and demonstrates you had a reason for calling. I suggest that you do your research ahead of time and be prepared to discuss not only the original property but others in the area that might fit the same criteria. Especially valuable could be a brand new listing or knowledge of one not on the market yet. This builds your value with the lead and encourages them to arrange an appointment to learn more.
Finally, most of the time the leads that come in, whether by phone or online, are usually not active buyers. They are in the dreaming or planning stage. Whereas most agents will dismiss these leads as a waste of time, I urge you to use it as an opportunity to help them develop a plan. This way, when they move from dreaming to buying, you will have already established yourself as their agent, and your sales will increase dramatically.

By understanding the motivations for these prospects and meeting their expectations, along with tenacity, you will see your sales increase and your business grow.
I'm Shon Kokoska founder of ICON COACHING an elite training program for real estate agents. It is my goal to help Real Estate professionals reach their career goals, and find success. The only way to do this is with hard work and proven practices. For more life changing tools you can use to accelerate your business, register for the Icon of the Month Webinar now. Seats fill up quickly so do not hesitate. Change your life today.- Register Here.