Is Your Real Estate Business a Hobby, Job, Career, or Vocation?

Many of my friends and colleagues are realtors. Some of them do better than others. Most of them are scraping by. Less than 1% are CRUSHING IT!

So what are these one-percenters doing differently than everyone else?

They’re not smarter or more knowledgeable. They have access to the same inventory everyone else does.

They have the same amount of hours in the day. And I would say they face many of the same challenges.

So what makes them so successful?

I think it’s HOW they see themselves, and WHAT they do about it.

They have a very clear understanding of the distinction between a hobby, a job, a career, and a vocation, in the context of real estate.

And they live and breathe all things real estate. They are obsessed with their craft.

Watch this video by Elizabeth Gilbert .

In case you’ve never heard of her, she’s the author of the book made into the movie “Eat Pray Love“, also “Big Magic“, and a few others.

I LOVE her explanation on the difference between a hobby, job, career, and vocation

I think the one-percenter realtors look at their real estate business as a career they love. A career that may have started as a vocation.

They made a decision to turn pro.

Steven Pressfield’s Turning Pro”  –A must read!

They have a daily process to their routine. Not a routine of their daily process.

They understand that helping people buy and sell real estate IS NOT what they do!

Rather a byproduct, and the inevitable result of being really good at one thing  –Marketing.

They know their NUMBER ONE JOB is to figure out who’s thinking about buying or selling their home in the next 12 months in a particular area of town.

And all their efforts are focused in getting those invisible prospects to raise their hand and reveal themselves.

They know the game is not to get on people’s faces and push listings.

Nor to create personal branding campaigns to make themselves look more qualified than the competition, or to pimp up their image to seem more worthy in their prospects eyes. 

In other words their marketing is not about getting famous.

They know people’s decision to buy or sell is not under their control, so they don’t worry or stress about it.

WHAT IS under their control is figuring out WHEN people plan to buy or sell.

For sellers  –they control the data of how much real estate has been sold in the area where they live, price ranges, and the SPEED at which homes have been turning.

And they SHARE this data FOR FREE with these future listing clients.

They do this consistently and in high frequency.

For buyers  –same thing.

They control the data on pricing, availability, property type, all of it on specific areas. Because they understand that buyers focus on location rather than speed.

Speed is more of a seller’s core focus.

They also share this data with them consistently and in high frequency.

These realtors get it!

You know what else they get?

They understand and have mastered the true psychology of referrals .

They don’t take their friends and professional relationships for granted. And they don’t burden them with the responsibility of remembering that they are realtors.

So every month, and sometimes biweekly they remind their friends and colleagues what they do by sending them interesting, entertaining, and valuable content.

They nudge (grab the audible) them so that when their friend’s friends and colleagues in casual conversation mention they’re in the market to buy or sell a home, automatically they can make the referral on the spot.

These realtors don’t see themselves as agents; but advisors, problem solvers, marketers and creators of real estate purchase, sales, and financing (Yes! They are also well versed in current financing strategies and know how to ask the right questions to potential buyers) options for people in their community.

They publish articles tailored to a single target audience of future buyers and sellers.

They showcase a new restaurant, or yoga place that just opened around the corner, by writing a quick article on their blog featuring the owner and the back story behind the business.

These one-percenters don’t waste their precious time on social media.

For them Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter are means to an end.

They know very well that in Facebook for example, if you’re not purchasing attention YOU ARE THE PRODUCT!

So they buy micro-targeted ads for buyers and sellers.

But they don’t send this traffic to a home page, where the first thing you see is an IDX widget.

They send the traffic from social to uniquely designed landing pages that offer reports, guides, and articles that share specific solutions to problems or things buyers and sellers want to know.

These guys love what they do, and every day they get better at it!

They don’t focus on closings, they focus on openings.

Opening new channels of communication and networks with the people the mean to serve.

So that if and when they’re ready, there’s only one logical choice to go with. 

I better stop here…

Bottom line, no wonder they’re killing it!

You would be too. If you approached it the same way. I believe that in my heart.

Cheers!

Claudio Alegre

 

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How To Craft a Pitch Not Even the Most Cynic of Prospects Could Resist

She was sorting her mail right over the garbage bin, like most Americans do.

A little while later she was closing every single pop up ad on her screen, and ignoring every ad Facebook flashed in front of her. She was a rock, completely immune to advertising.

This scenario describes every person you would consider a prospect.

She’s no different than you. She wants to go about her day, and she doesn’t want to be interrupted or sold to.

But if you must, at least be sincere about it! She may forgive you and glance your way for two seconds, and that’s all the time you’ll need.

Here’s what I mean…

If you offer, say a “FREE Yoga Session“, then you can’t say “REGISTER NOW! Limited Availability

If there was really “limited availability” you wouldn’t be able to offer a FREE session because you wouldn’t need to.

Something that’s truly scarce is never advertised as such, it’s just not available. And it is perceived this way because of the inherent value it has!

At the heart of this behavior lies a benign lack of sincerity.

You’re selling a Trojan horse!

You’re just doing what you see everyone else do, so why not!

In marketing and advertising, sincerity or lack there of, is not like a fifteen foot wave coming at you. Is more like a rip current. Powerful and consistent, but subtle. You know is there, but you make decisions about it in an involuntary and automatic way.

Why do you like some people right away and not others?

At the onset you don’t know why, you can’t put your finger on it. You just know the first impression was a good one and you want more of it.

When you create your marketing messages, put your self in the reader’s place.

Think back at all those postcards, ads, and links you’ve received and clicked on that you were just like … eeeewhhhhh!

Don’t do it. Lead with something that has at least a semblance of empathy for your audience, and tell them why it would make sense to take you up on the offer.

Go deep. Offer a real solution, even if you feel you’re giving too much away. There will be resistance, I promise you.

So how do you make a  [“Free Yoga Class – Register Now! Limited Availability. Hurry Up, This Won’t Last”]  offer, more sincere?

By offering a brief and relatable back story.

“Because we just opened our new studio, we’d like to invite you to a FREE Yoga Class. It’s our way of getting to know you and have a chance to say hello in our own special way! Register here. Or just call this number # to reserve your spot. Hope to see you soon :-)”

Here’s another option…

“Welcome to the neighborhood! Some people will knock on your door with a box of donuts, some will invite you to a BBQ. We want to gift you a FREE Yoga Class. It’s our way of welcoming you in our own special way! Register here. Or just call this number # to reserve your spot. Hope to see you soon :-)”

You don’t have to do it exactly this way… but you get my drift right!

There are no hidden agendas, no benign insincerity.

Hello, We’re so and so. We’d like to invite you over because. Hope to get the chance to meet you. Here’s how. Take care.

That’s it. There’s no reason to pressure anyone into reacting by offering a bullshit scarcity offer they see coming a mile away anyway!

I know the wannabe Wolf of Wall Streeters and hard core badass closers of the world are going to be screaming… “You Pussy! ABC… Always be closing! If you’re not selling, they’re selling you!”

Sure, no doubt these pressure sales tactics work …on desperate, weak minded, and short term oriented clients and consumers.

Are these the people you’re looking to connect with?

If they are, then sorry to have wasted your time.

If they are not. Then don’t produce cheap and insincere offers.

Smart and educated consumers always figure it out.

Here are the main benefits of creating sincere offers:

1. Instant differentiation from everyone else pushing their shtick.

2. Stop people on their tracks because there’s something unique about you. They just don’t know what it is yet.

3. Build a small tribe of loyal and evangelical customers. Guess what that does for your referral business!

4. It’s easier to create these ads because you don’t need to bs people into action.

5. You feel good about yourself!

If this makes sense to you, then get after it!

Claudio

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How I Saved My Best Money Making Skill From Chaos and Lameness

It’s been too long since I’ve blogged on this site!

And it’s not like I’ve had droves of complaints and requests to get back to it… it’s just that I needed to, physiologically, mentally, and spiritually.

I’ve had a tidal wave of work come my way… I have multiple interests I’ve been pursuing, a couple of playground projects, plus my own exclusive client work.

But I’m loving it!

I’m loving it because in the words of a tagline I created for a friend of mine who happens to own the most honest and prolific yacht sales/acquision consulting firm in South Florida, Andy Silva… (if you’re in the market for a big boat, check him out at:  www.yachtconsultinggroup.com)

“It’s not a lifestyle unless you live it on your own terms”

The one thing that blogging always did for me was to create a rip channel, a narrow pathway for my shore waters to get back out to sea.

I only understood how visceral that need was until my office furniture was entirely blanketed with yellow pads, post it notes, and moleskines all over the place.

The moment you start to feel stressed when doing what you love, something needs to change.

But don’t change your passion, change your process.

If your passion is also your top money making skill, then you’re a very lucky man or woman…

By the way… what’s your top money making skill?

Don’t feel bad if you have to think a bit hard to answer this question.

You’ll be surprise how many people struggle with it. I sure did!

You see when you are a writer you write… I mean you read and write, but mostly you write.

You write your thoughts down, your feelings, observations, ideas, plans, sales letters, promos, ads, evil schemes and heists!

Writing is how I make sense of it all.

It’s also how I make a living because if my emails, ads, and promos don’t perform I don’t get paid!

The thing is when I don’t write this way  (meaning in a way that focuses my thoughts and ideas) my thinking becomes circular and chaotic, and so are my results.

When I write in this format (with discipline and mindfulness) my thinking is organized and focused, and so are my results.

What regular blogging does (at least for me!) is to organize those thoughts in calendar order even if I don’t hit publish right away.

I can’t tell you how intoxicating and mind-bending the feeling of letting your mind freestyle away is.

My unsolicited advice to you, is take to your unique skill the way a crack addict takes to his pipe… in trembling desperation and with a tunnel vision focus.

Something else happens when I blog.

I create an unspoken agreement that what I write I’ll publish. Like a social contract of sorts.

This will keep me fresh in people’s inbox and front and center on my favorite social media channels.

So if writing, creating videos, selling on the phone, or designing websites is your thing –get after it, find your process!

Do it daily, get better at it.

Treat your talent with the respect it deserves, and don’t ever think it’s either enough to succeed, or that it will never decay  –because mediocrity is always waiting for you to get complacent about how much talent you think you freaking have.

Here’s something else…

I don’t want you to care one iota about measuring your progress when you’re doing this.

Here’s my guarantee… YOU’RE MAKING PROGRESS! Keep at it.

For me, it’s writing, largely in this format.

For you, I don’t have the slightest clue! You have to figure that out yourself.

What’s for sure is this  –Your unique skill needs to be honed, crafted and practiced constantly.

Feed the beast daily and your muse will show up more often. Even when you’re not ready for her!

This is what will separate you from everyone else, how you’ll stand out, and why someone will joyfully write you big fat checks for your product or service!

Here’s to you leveling up. Enjoy the ride!

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If You Change Your Words, You Change Your World

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photography-words-have-power-word-orange-notes-image59739852

Of all the things you can do to grow a business that matters, writing and producing compelling and story-driven content is what will bring you the highest return on investment.

Yet it’s usually the last thing in people’s mind!

Most businesses downplay or outright ignore message strategy altogether. Instead they focus on what I call “tactical beauty”, which is usually devoid of any real thinking or empathy elements.

The power of words, when properly and effectively applied, engage both the conscious and the subconscious mind.

Meaning that a well crafted and positioned message, with a strong value proposition, targeted to the right audience and delivered at the right time, will almost always hit a nerve.

Just remember, before you touch the brain you must touch the heart!

Also, don’t forget –if your product, service, or you SUCK,  it won’t matter what words you choose!

Here’s a video I usually point people to in order to describe not only what I do, but the mindset they must have when it comes to creating the right message for their businesses.

Enjoy!

Stay sharp and fired up 🙂

Get our FREE full 7 Step High-Impact Customer Ad Formula and…

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Aligning Healthcare Providers and Patients

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The secret to better care in hospitals is about aligning providers to patients. The question of course, is how?  The way we do it is by creating an immersive environment based upon data. The end result is that people change. The ideas that surround them, help connect people in a deep, emotional way. –@gapingvoid

What I love about this idea, what I find powerful about it… is that it’s premised on the belief that “people change”.

If you’ve spent any time in the healthcare trenches you instinctively know this is a novel concept.

Why? Because the level of bureaucracy, cynicism, and apathy in healthcare is the highest of any industry.

Healthcare is in dire need of change, specifically a culture change. No wonder listening to the guys from

No wonder listening to the guys from healthUX @gapingvoid lead the conversation with empathy, better experiences, and deeper connections between healthcare providers and patients fills you with hope and wonder about the future in this space.

The good people in the industry need to hear this, they need to feel the energy around it if they want a change in culture.

The focus must be on the people with the right attitude and on patients and their families!

 

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The Amazing Simple Secret To Attract Meaningful Clients

http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-photography-business-group-row-leader-open-hand-image37707187Aren’t you tired of living in obscurity and neglect? Watching other companies and people swipe the clients and customers you should be getting while you live your life wishing and wanting but never achieving?

I hate that feeling!

But look!  -You have to decide what kind of company you want to be.

I kept it simple, I want to inspire people. I want them to see their business in a brand new way …a better way, and I’m confident I can help!

If you are pitching someone who’s not inspired or doesn’t have enough imagination to be a better version of themselves with your help, then don’t take them as a client, don’t work with them!

What I want to share with you today will GUARANTEE you success IF you stick to just one basic rule.

This super-simple formula will allow you to build exactly the kind of business you dream of -with only the clients you envision working with -and to create the kind of business that will give you the lifestyle you’ve always wanted.

Don’t you want to be in constant demand, be booked months in advanced, and have a waiting list of prospects turning down your competitors because they must see you?

If you like the sound of that, then you must do this:

MAKE YOURSELF WANTED, NEVER NEEDED!

Take a minute to reflect on this, because it’s either going to make total sense to you and hit you like a Mike Tyson right hook, or you won’t get it, and you will stop reading right here while you curse me and my entire family!

By the way…that would be a shame because I know you can make this work. But please do yourself a favor, KEEP READING.

You may say to yourself, but I already do that… I make myself EXTRA-wanted, and I say to you: NO YOU DON’T!

Thinking and wishing are not the same as working and getting results, the results you really, really want!

I don’t mean to come in like a bull in a china shop with this advice, and believe me I want you to make it out like a bandit at whatever you do, but it makes my blood boil when I see incredibly sharp and talented people choosing to work with clients that don’t appreciate them and are totally devoid of inspiration and creativity!

The money is almost always – NOT WORTH IT.

Are you still a doubting Thomas? -Let me prove it by asking you…

Why are you in business, most specifically, why do you offer the services or products you do?

Most people will answer:

Because I’m filling a need in the marketplace, people NEED what I have, I do a great job, I’m priced in the right range, and I’m unique in the way I deliver my product or service!

And this answer is also why most people are getting their ass kicked and on the road to oblivion.

oblivion: [uh-bliv-ee-uh n] – The state of being completely forgotten or unknown. The act or process of dying out; complete annihilation or extinction.

Think about it for a second. Haven’t the most important decisions, and by most important I mean the ones that have affected your life in the most profound way, been made out of wants more so than needs?

Think hard now and give me an honest effort! 🙂

  • Did you want or need to get married?
  • Did you want or need to drive the car of your dreams?
  • Did you want or need kids?
  • Does a woman need or desperately wants to make love to a man she secretly daydreams about?
  • Do you need or want to lose 40 pounds? The fact is that no one that says “I need to lose 40 pounds” actually does it. Only the ones that REALLY FREAKING WANT to change their lives for the better ACTUALLY do it!
  • Do you want or need to summit Everest?
  • Do you want or need to be an Olympian?

Need I go on?

So why don’t you stack the deck in your favor for once!

Everything that ignites a purpose-driven life and the ACTION that precedes is based on deep burning desires, not mere needs!

So I ask you once again.

How do you want the world to relate to you … via deep desire or basic need?

Do you want to be perceived as a mere need, a necessary evil, a reluctant obligation?

Or do you want to be seen as someone who people say:  “This is the guy I want to work with” “This is the company I want to be associated with” “These are the guys that get what I’m about”

I’m done here …anymore talking and I’ll come across as If I’m trying to convince you of inevitability (which is, you are great already! Just show me!), and like my grandfather used to tell me:

Don’t ever try to convince anyone of the inevitable, you’ll look like a jackass!  …Thanks Abuelo!

Oh, and just in case you are wondering how exactly you make yourself Wanted and not Needed, I’ll dive deeper on this topic soon!

Stay sharp and fired up 🙂

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The 3 Step High-Impact Customer Ad Formula

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Here’s one big business myth that’s pervasive both in the online and offline worlds:

We just need to get our name out there!

Not true today, it’s never been true, and it will never be true!

Your ad doesn’t need to get your name out, it needs to reel customers in.

Your content marketing and ads work only when they attract a targeted profile or customer you want to engage and sell your product or service to.

In order to make content marketing and advertising work, you need to know how both relate to each other, and what advertising really is: “Salesmanship in print

Here’s a 3 step high-impact customer ad formula:

Step 1 Make sure your headline is a total problem solver with a unique benefit. Keep it simple and focused on what they want to hear, touch and feel. Do not include your name or company info, nobody cares!

Step 2Do not mention the price. At this point they don’t want to be sold, in fact, NO ONE ever wants to be sold, but we do like to buy stuff don’t we! So appeal to the buyer in them, not the bargain hunter, keep price out of it, price is just a detail, not the deal itself.

Step 3Spend time working on your “Hook”. What is the one thing that YOU know they will react to? I know step 3 and Step 1 seem almost identical but they are not. The “Benefit” the “Offer”, the hook provides.

Everything we do online and offline needs to solve a problem, assuming your product is an awesome solution, just remember no one knows that yet!

They don’t know who you are, so the only way anyone is ever going to find out how awesome you are is by finding your copy more compelling than convincing and raising their hand to find out more.

Get the FREE full 7 Step High-Impact Customer Ad Formula and…

Become a Better Marketer

 

Stay focused :-)

 

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Star Wars and J.J. Abrams Teach Us a Powerful Marketing Lesson!

starwars

Different, just different …!

The traditional way to build anticipation and interest in the film industry is by showing action-filled clips spaced with climactic moments for what’s to come.

Instead in the new Star Wars ComicCon reel J.J. Abrams decided to tell a story that made us feel like we belonged, that just because we didn’t have a physical part in the making of the “new-old” story, we belong because we relate and we have a personal history with Star Wars.

He did so by giving us a brief but aspirational experience!

Sometimes is tempting and easier to tease people about what’s to come, even if it’s great by the way …But what if you go deeper, what if you link to our need to belong and be part of something greater than ourselves!

Nothing’s changed really, I mean everything’s changed but nothing’s changed …that’s the way you want it to be really! -Mark Hamill

That’s a powerful business and marketing lesson!

See you at the movies in December 🙂

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How Elon Musk created nearly 1$B in value with a single tweet

tesla-d_featured

Photo credit: www.pando.com

I absolutely had to write about this event on my own blog and that’s why I totally stole it from Michael Carney ( @pandodaily ) at Pando.

Elon Musk, what can I say? I’m a big fan and student of this guy …How can you not be if you are an entrepreneur?

But I don’t want to talk about him as much as I want to point out AGAIN how Social Media when properly hacked and respected can affect bottom line, real-time, real-life-business metrics like …Let me see Oh! …Revenue!?

So on March 30, 2015 Elon tweets this to his 1.86 M followers:

Major new Tesla product line — not a car — will be unveiled at our Hawthorne Design Studio on Thurs 8pm, April 30

…and by day’s end Musk’s message had been retweeted more than 4,700 times and favorited another 3,700, while eliciting thousands more responses.

Results:  The electric car maker’s stock to jump nearly 4 percent in just 10 minutes – adding a staggering $900 million to the company’s market cap in just 115 characters.

Read full report here!

But here’s my point:

I know you are not Elon Musk, you don’t have 1.86 M followers on Twitter,  you are not revolutionizing the car industry as we speak, basically replacing NASA with SpaceX,  and the only company that you can be compared to in terms of innovation, disruption and popularity would be Apple. I realize that!

So obviously when this guy tweets or says something, people are on the edge of their seats.

You know what, he’s earned that and you haven’t!

Most of us haven’t!

But that doesn’t mean you should not use Twitter as a primary tool for your personal marketing (branding) or as an integral part of your company’s social media strategy.

Here’s how you can leverage Twitter exactly like Elon Musk did:

Approach your Twitter marketing strategy with these points in mind and in this order-

#1 RESEARCH – Twitter is the most powerful real time research tool on the Web today. Twitter Trends point you in the direction of the conversation and the #hashtag brings the convo feed right to your door step, it’s the modern social SEO. Join or Listen to any conversation, on any topic, any time, any where!

#2 CONNECTING – Twitter dominates in this area as well because assuming you’ve identified who’s genuine and who’s a troll, Twitter allows to instantly connect with like minded peeps in your space or any just about any area of interest to you. Just be YOU and offer something of value, say thank you to someone for following, support someone’s cause, curate kick-ass content, comments and media… And do so without expectation! You can’t do this? -Find life elsewhere!

#3 MARKETING – Twitter can be very deceiving on this end, especially when you don’t get 1 and 2. Twitter ad product is evolving quickly and is better today than it was yesterday. But still I think that Twitter is the best tool to drive one-on-one marketing opportunities as long as you do again, #1 and #2 properly, patiently and consistently. Be human about the engagement and you’ll be fine.

So let’s recap!

Research your market and find out who needs what, Listen, Listen, Listen! Then connect viscerally with people, give a crap about their stuff, especially if it ads value to other people and share it if it does!

You do this enough and you’ve planned your strategy, funnels and content on your end and in essence you’ve been doing the kind of marketing only 1% of people on Twitter actually do!

That kind of goodwill and digital Karma works, it just does!

Also, don’t be afraid to ask for people to check your stuff out, just make sure it’s actually stuff worth checking out.

I almost forgot!

Here’s a video link to that major Tesla product event announcement on that Tweet … Enjoy, its awesome!

Also, if you’d like to learn How To Use Twitter Strategically for your business or personal brand, email me or call me and I’ll show you the right way to use it specifically for your business  🙂

claudio@venmarkmedia.com – 786.303.1500

Take care!

 

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The Only 10 Slides You Need To Pitch Your Business

When was the last time you truly got practical value out of a power point presentation?

And what I mean by practical value, is a concise, clear and brief understanding of the idea being presented in under 20 minutes or less, and that would help you take the next step or make a decision right after the presentation.

When you pitch your business for the first time the only goal is to sell the next encounter or event. Design your pitch strategy with simple goals and add value at every step. Remember you are qualifying your prospects as much as they are qualifying you.

If you’ve been guilty as I have of the 20 to 30 slides, all-over-the-place deck, check this guide out put together by Guy Kawasaki.

The 10 slides are:

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Read full post here!

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