Do you realize that the people who do the most – for customers, clients, and even friends – are often the last to notice their own efforts?
I find this with my Realtor clients more than any others.
When they hire me to write letters, web copy, or an agent bio I ask them to fill out a questionnaire. One of my questions is “What do you do that’s special? How is your service different from your competitors? What makes you stand out from the crowd?”
Most of the time, they can’t tell me.
In fact, some even tell me there’s nothing different about their service. They swear that they do the same things everyone else does.
I know better.
For one thing, they wouldn’t be bothering to hire a copywriter if they weren’t a cut above the rest. They’d be sitting at their desks playing video games or hanging out in the break room, whining about no customers.
So… quite often my challenge is to drag that information out of them, one little chunk at a time.
If you haven’t figured out what makes you special – and if you aren’t using it in your marketing, then I issue you this challenge:
First, take a few hours away from everyone – find a spot where you can be quiet and think. Take a notepad with you.
Now, envision what you do for each buyer – no matter how trivial you think those things are. Write them all down in a long list. Believe me, if you really think about all the things you believe are small and unimportant the list will be long.
Then do the same for sellers. Mentally walk through your day and notice the things you do. Put them on the list.
Then stop and remember comments clients have made to you – or testimonials they have written. My guess is you’ll find some of those small, unimportant (to you) tasks included in their thanks.
Compare what you do to what others do…
Think about the last few closings you did that involved another agent on the other side of the transaction. Did you do part of that agent’s work? Did you catch her in a small falsehood or two? Did he return your phone calls promptly – or make you wait for needed information?
Take a new sheet of paper and write down all the things you saw those agents NOT doing.
Next take a mental look around your office. See that agent over there shopping on eBay? See the guy wandering around bothering everyone who is trying to work? See the pair in the break room discussing last night’s TV shows?
Don’t you think you’re doing some things that they aren’t doing?
It’s too bad, but those “not doing” agents make up 80% of the people “working” in real estate. (Just like they make up 80% of the people “working” in every other field.)
That’s why your service is better – and why customers and clients NEED you!
Don’t be afraid to use some of the things you think of as routine in your marketing – because they aren’t routine to buyers and sellers who have worked with anyone in that 80%.
In case you’ve forgotten – Claude Hopkins raised Schlitz beer from obscure to #2 in the country, just by talking about a process that every beer manufacturer in the country was also using. They just didn’t mention it, because everyone did it.
Mentioning the little things you do for customers and clients also helps them see why you are worth every penny it costs to have your help – and I doubt if there’s an agent who has worked for more than 6 months who hasn’t had a client try to negotiate the commission down simply because they couldn’t see what the agent did that could be worth “so much.”
You can create a web page entitled “What you can expect from me when I list your home,” or you can mention the bits and pieces as you go through a listing presentation. Then you can do something similar for buyer prospects.
Surely you realize how many buyers have been “hung out to dry” by an agent who insisted they sign a buyer agency agreement and then left it up to the buyers to find homes to view. Your marketing can assure them that you’ll be the one searching for their perfect home.
You also have to know how many agents fail to return phone calls. Make a promise to return calls within X number of hours – and then, of course, keep the promise.
Look at what you do – compare it to the 80% - let yourself feel a bit of pride – and then use it in your marketing!