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Beyond the License: Sales and Real Estate
Wednesday, October 16, 2019 at 10:00 AM PDT We've all heard the expression, "real estate is a relationship business," but it's also a sales business. In this class, learn from MDPP coach Sheldon Rapoza, and special guest Nicole Martin--a new agent with a 20-year sales background, how to effectively incorporate sales into your real estate business. You'll learn the importance of working your database like a true sales pipeline, as well as scripts and best practices for an effective opening – from cold calls to new leads, and everything in between. Plus, we'll share tips and strategies for making better connections with consumers. What we'll cover: Understanding the real estate sales cycle and process Tips and scripts for developing a solid opening Effective discovery questions, and why they work Register now!
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Annual Business Checklist for Real Estate Agents
According to Mark Twain, "the secret to getting ahead is getting started." And when you're running your own real estate business, there's a lot of work to do. We've highlighted some important tasks to keep your business running smoothly and the best season to complete them so that you have ample time to grow your business while keeping your tools and systems up to date.
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Starting Your Business as a New Real Estate Agent
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How Business Strategy Can Help You Stand Out in Real Estate
Have you ever come across a billboard you thought was ridiculous? It may have made you chuckle a bit, or you may have thought it was corny. Regardless of your feelings, the fact that you remembered the billboard was an attempt to stand out from a business--and it did its job. But doing something outlandish is not the only way to stand out in real estate. Yes, you can go the billboard route and do real estate parodies on Game of Thrones, the Lego Movie, or "Thinking about moving to Canada after the elections?" However, is that how you want local homebuyers and sellers to think of you?
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5 Tips to Successfully Launch Your Real Estate Career
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7 To-Dos to Check Off Before 2019
3...2...1... Happy Almost New Year! Goal setting season is upon us. Resolutions are looming and the success of your business next year can depend largely on how you wrap up the next few weeks. It's a heavy task with all the festivities and subsequent lack of focus, but if you prioritize a few key things, you'll set yourself up for success.
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5 Steps for Planning Your 2019 Real Estate Marketing Budget
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6 Mistakes New Real Estate Agents Make
Whether you're thinking about becoming a real estate agent, or you're navigating the early years of your career, there's a lot to take in. Colleagues are always full of tips for new real estate agents, and it can be overwhelming! To help make sure you're setting yourself on the right track, we've gathered six common missteps to avoid as you start your career as an agent:
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It's Business Planning Season: 4 Costly Mistakes to Avoid for 2019
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5 Tasks You Can Do in Your 'Free Hour' to Win More Business
Daylight Savings Time is coming to an end. Though I'll be sad to see it go, there is a positive side: we'll all get one extra hour in the day! That's right, once a year we do indeed get more hours in the day. How will you use that hour? We've created a list of tasks you can complete in an hour or less. Just choose a task and get to work!
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Q4 Is Here: 5 Ways Successful Agents End Strong and Build Momentum
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Strategies to End and Start Your Year on Top
Q4 tends to be the the quietest season of the year business-wise, but it's probably the most important one when it comes to relationships – because you have the opportunity to finish the year strong and to fill your pipeline for the upcoming year. ReferralExchage's Lisa Fettner recently held a webinar with Dan Smith, a former top-producing agent and now a coach, consultant and speaker. They discussed how to make the most of your Q4 to ensure that you hit the ground running in Q1. Here is some of their best advice:
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Risk Management for Your Real Estate Business
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Time Management Skills to Master for Real Estate Agents
Real estate agents everywhere: Does your day feel like a cascade of tasks with no breaks for solving some of your larger problems? Do you feel overwhelmed and like you could really use either a) more hours in the day or b) less projects to do? Then it's time to learn and master new time management skills. Let's start at the beginning: addressing your daily activities as a real estate agent.
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The Guide for New Real Estate Agents
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Miss the Mark on Your Q1 Goals? Try These Tips to Stay on Track in Q2
It's hard to believe, but the first quarter of 2018 is already behind us. Maybe you didn't quite have the start to the year you hoped for. We get it, the first part of every real estate sales year can be tough for agents. The majority of it takes place in winter, when sales are slower and the closings don't always stack up. This makes it tough to stay in shape for the spring sprint. We understand that the business is up and down and have a few suggestions on what to do if you're not confident your first three months' performance will lead to the year you had planned back on January 1.
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Friday Freebie: Set (and Keep!) Your 2018 Goals with this Workbook
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[Infographic] Planning Your Best Year Ever
Was your first year in real estate everything you hoped it would be? What about your fifth, tenth, or fifteenth? When you launched your career in real estate, you likely set some goals for yourself, ones that you've tweaked and refined with experience and a better understanding of your market. Now you can probably make a decent estimate of the transaction volume you'll achieve each year. However, that's about to change. In a Secrets of Top Selling Agents webinar, Tom Ferry explained how with the right planning you can double, triple, or even quadruple your business!
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Friday Freebie: Social Media and Business Planning Checklists for 2018
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2018 Business Planning for Real Estate Agents
Real estate agents: Now is the time to start your 2018 business plan. The end of the year arrived quickly (as always), which has most of us reflecting on the past year and setting goals for the coming year. As an agent, what's your plan for ensuring next year is even more successful than this one? It's time to start your business plan, set goals, and put the right tools in place that will get you headed in the right direction – towards financial success. Here are a few things you should be thinking about this time of year, including a handful of free resources to help you get a jump start.
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10 Easy Ways Agents Can Run a More Profitable Business
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5 Ways to Prepare Now for a Strong 2018 Listings Year
With the holidays rushing in and your business slowing down, it may seem tempting to trade in your hustle for hibernation and take a long winter's nap. With many agents doing just that, this becomes an even hotter time to make yourself stand out and be known. This season is also a fantastic time of year to identify listing opportunities that could keep you busy from now through spring 2018. Below are five ways to leverage your downtime and take advantage of the season—all while building up your base of potential sellers.
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The Business Mixer Plan for Real Estate Agents
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5 Steps Real Estate Agents Can Take to Finish 2017 Strong
While our strong summer market continues to keep agents busy across the country, fall is just around the corner—and you have only five months to close out 2017 with a bang! Below are five foolproof ways you can assess your business goals, tweak your projections and ramp up your business so 2017 is your best year yet. 1. Start with the goals you might not meet
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3 Reasons Your Real Estate Practice Isn't Growing
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3 Tips for Agents Who Want to Open Their Own Brokerage
"It was never my dream to work for a real estate company for the rest of my life." —Stacie Perrault Staub Was it the idea of promoting someone else's brand, working around someone else's schedule, and splitting your commission that encouraged you to pursue a career in real estate? Probably not. Working for an established brokerage is a great way to get started in real estate, but it's rarely the end goal of aspiring agents. In a recent Secrets of Top Selling Agents webinar, Stacie Perrault Staub, founder and owner of West & Main Homes and the brain behind the popular Genuine Hustle conferences, shared her tips to start your own real estate brand. Watch the free webinar, Launching a Real Estate Brand from Scratch, for more information, or find our three tips from the webinar below! 1. Take Your Future into Your Own Hands It can be hard to leave a job or company you love, but eventually you have to "make the decision to take a leap and go out on [your] own and start [your] own thing." Staub stressed that "finding those like minded people that share your passions" is a crucial step toward building the confidence you need to launch your own brand. Consider planning a conference, hosting an event, or forming a mastermind group to help you connect with real estate professionals who have already started their own brand, or who, like you, are just starting down the path.
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Launching a Real Estate Brand from Scratch: Baby Steps and Big Changes
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Friday Freebie: 21 Steps to Get Your Business Ready for 2017
Have you made any business resolutions for the year ahead? If so, great! Now a tougher question: Do you know the steps you need to take to make those resolutions a reality? That's the most important part of your resolution, because as the old saying goes, "A goal without a plan is just a wish." If you find the planning part a challenge, never fear. We've got two free checklists to get your business ready for the new year--no anxiety-driven planning session needed! 2 Free Business and Social Media Checklists from Homes.com Part of what makes the process of planning intimidating for some people is that they picture it as one overwhelming task that they must undertake. But the real secret to success is in breaking up big tasks into small, measurable steps that are easy to achieve. And that's part of why we think you'll appreciate both the Business Planning Checklist and the Social Media Checklist from Homes.com. They make it easier to reach your goals with simplified tasks, like: Segment your contact list into groups you can target with marketing Verify your business listing on all major search engines Research competitors' advertisements and content for new ideas Respond to questions and comments left on your social media pages Track monthly changes in number of social media followers Pretty painless, right? Many of the checklist items offer links to extra resources like market reports and informative articles to help you out even more. If you're ready to take on 2017, download Homes.com's 2017 Social Media and Business Planning Checklists today!
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How to Make 2017 Your Most Successful Year Ever
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What should agents do in the slow real estate season?
No matter where you work in real estate, there is a slow season in your market. Things pick up and then things go quiet. But what time of year that is and what each agent does with it with varies greatly. Come the fall, the slow season moves over the Seattle area like a cloud, and Kirkland, Washington agent Georgia Wall knows that means buying and selling comes to a halt. But her marketing efforts do not. "Buyers are distracted and spending money on shopping, not houses," she said. "And sellers are busy having friends and family over for the holidays and putting lights up. No one wants to move around this time of year." "During our slower times, I like to stop and reflect on what we are doing well, and also examine where our opportunities are, and how we can improve," said Carie Igel of Fathom Realty in Columbus, Ohio. "Some of this improvement is shifting around responsibilities within the team. I like to manage to my team's strengths instead of making someone do something they don't like." The same time of year is a bit different for Anchor Real Estate's Josh Tucker in Lake Norman, North Carolina. "Interestingly, my niche gives me a 'bump' this time of year during the slow-down," he said. "This is the NASCAR off-season and I sell to a lot of people in that industry."
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How to Set Your Goals Now for More Commissions in 2017
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Grow Your Business Exponentially Next Year by Starting Now
2016 is starting to wind down, so now is a great time to start planning for next year! Watch as Coach Tom Ferry breaks down the habits you should build in order to exponentially grow your sales in 2017. Check out the 2:36 mark for his first tip!
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Spending 5 Minutes with Your 2016 Business Plan
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Friday Freebie: Track Your Marketing ROI with this Worksheet
You know how they say you have to spend money to make money? It's true, but you have to spend wisely in order to get the most bang for your buck. To better judge which expenses are worth keeping in 2016, zoom in on the return on investment (ROI) for each. This free ROI worksheet from Zillow will help you do just that. It's the second in our series of Friday Freebies that help you prepare for a successful New Year (You can see last week's 15-task business checklist here.) Free ROI Tracking Worksheet, courtesy of Zillow This little gem is a simple Excel spreadsheet that doesn't require you to share any contact info in order to download (refreshing, right?). Instead, it asks you to list your monthly expenses (advertising, website, CRM, etc.)--and annual commission in order to calculate your ROI. Like we said, it's simple. But the worksheet is flexible enough that anyone with a little Excel knowledge can use it as a starting point for more complex ROI tracking. Zillow, for example, recommends using a new worksheet for each campaign. You can modify it in whatever way works best for your business. Tip: If you add new line items to the "Expenses" section, be sure to merge Columns A&B and C&D for each new row. Want to start measuring your success today? Download Zillow's free ROI Tracking Worksheet now!
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Friday Freebie: 15 Tasks to Get Your Business Ready for 2016
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How to Make Next Year Your Best Year Ever
In last month's Secrets of Top Selling Agents webinar, Tom Ferry, CEO of Your Coach, a multimillion dollar coaching and training service, offered valuable insights into business planning for 2016. Identify Gaps in Your Existing Business In his webinar, Ferry presented the 14 key components of your existing business that you should be reviewing to reach your 2016 goals. He suggests, before you get wrapped up in starting new projects and buying new leads, trying to "think about what are the holes in your business, and create a stronger foundation of integrity inside your existing business." Among the 14 components you should be looking at are things like: Is your database organized? Are you reaching out to your database? Are you marketing to your database? How is your geographic farming going? How about your open house conversion? You can download the full list of key business components here.
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How to End the Year with a Boom
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Five Steps to Create Your Real Estate Niche
The most successful real estate agents are those who have a specialized niche — but how do you identify which niche is the best fit for you? Whether you are just starting out in real estate, or if you have had a longterm "sell anything to anyone" approach, carving out a niche will focus your business and help you become a specialized market expert. Stop chasing after every sale, and follow the five steps below to identify the real estate niche that will most effectively grow your clientele and your profitability. 1.) Do a thorough market analysis: Your local market should play the largest role in determining your niche. Research census data, relocation and building trends, and local business growth to determine the strongest potential for real estate growth in your community. Only focus on developing a niche that is appropriate for your market. Niches can range from specializing in historical homes, urban lofts, first-time buyers, school district expert — be both strategic and creative when narrowing in on your specialty. 2.) Create a specialized network: After you've determined your niche, begin assembling a network that can help you better cater to your new clientele. Working with specialized mortgage brokers, home inspectors, stagers, attorneys and other professionals to create a smoother experience for your future clients. After you establish your network, work with them to create a thorough listing presentation that outlines the complete experience your potential clients will have. Your clients will love the feeling of exclusivity that comes with working with you and your team.
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5 Tasks Every Real Estate Agent Should Complete Before Month's End
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Friday Freebie: 2015 Real Estate Business Plan
Last week, we highlighted a 15-task checklist that agents can use to get their business ready for 2015. It was the first in a series of "Freebies" that help prepare you for success in the New Year. This week, we're kicking it up a notch with a free, full-on business plan (complete with worksheets!) from Trulia. 2015 Real Estate Business Plan, courtesy of Trulia Now when we said "full-on plan," we meant it. This is three dozen pages of content and worksheets designed to methodically assist you in determining realistic income goals and how to achieve them. The Plan starts off by looking at how you performed last year--closed transactions, average commission, sources of business, etc. Once you understand where you've been, you can set your sights on where you want to go in 2015. This is accomplished by calculating how many closed transactions and prospects are needed to meet those goals. From there, you'll identify your strengths and develop a plan for the year ahead. Target markets, lead generation sources, and communication channels are all part of what you'll consider. Your 2015 business plan will come together via a series of easy-to-use worksheets. Here's what's included: Production Analysis Chart Income Projection Prospect Calculator Plan Preparation Marketing Checklist Marketing Budget Worksheet Monthly Marketing Calendar Weekly Activity Tracker Daily Activity Tracker My 2015 Goals – Quick Reference Read to get started? Download Trulia's 2015 Real Estate Business Plan today!
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10 Resolutions that Will Help You Win More Clients in 2015
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Friday Freebie: 15 Tasks to Get Your Business Ready for 2015
It's our first Friday Freebie of the new year, and the first in a "freebie" series that focuses on preparing for success in 2015. Over the next few weeks, we'll be sharing free business and marketing plans that will help you bank more money in the year ahead. 2015 Business Planning Checklist from Homes.com We're breaking you in easy today, though, with a simple 15-task checklist that will have your business running like an efficient, well-oiled machine. The idea is to break down the work of preparing for the new year into small, manageable tasks. That way, you won't get overwhelmed and give up before even starting. Here's a sample of some of the tasks included in the checklist: Segment your contact list into groups you can target with marketing Clean out and organize email inbox Customize one new email touch campaign Set notifications for birthdays and other key dates for important contacts Update your business cards and other branded marketing materials Pretty painless, right? Many of the items offer links to resources like market reports and informative articles to help you out even more. If you're ready to take on 2015, download Homes.com's 2015 Business Planning Checklist today!
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3 Ways to Revitalize Your Real Estate Business
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How to Create a Foolproof Marketing Plan for Your Real Estate Business
A formal marketing plan is necessary to grow and sustain a successful real estate business. Whether you are a real estate rookie or celebrating your 25th anniversary in the industry, creating an annual marketing plan will help you stay relevant in a constantly evolving industry. Follow the below to recharge your marketing strategy and meet your 2014 goals by the end of the year. Bonus: We have included a link to download a marketing plan template to help you get started. 1. Analyze your competitors: Competition is a given in the real estate industry. Before defining your goals, understand where your business ranks among your local competitors. Ask yourself: What are my competitors doing differently than me that helps them succeed? How can I adapt those strategies to align with my marketing efforts? Where are my competitors not performing well, and how can I fill this gap for potential clients? Based off of your competitive analysis, determine what you can do to differentiate yourself in your market and give your business a competitive advantage.
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SWOT Analysis for Real Estate Agents
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S.M.A.R.T. Goal Setting For Real Estate Agents
If you do not have goals for your real estate business, you are exponentially less likely to ever be considered a top producing, successful agent. Goals are a good thing. They give us direction. They are a constant reminder of the direction we want to head, and where we want to end up. As humans, especially in this day in age, we need direction. Without it, there are too many outside influences that will keep you from reaching your ultimate destination. If you don't reach your ultimate destination, you are not going to be a successful business person. While goals are good, they are also a tricky thing. Too many times we are not honest with ourselves about where we currently are, so where we want to get is just not realistic. As proud people, we also tend to want to bite off more than we can chew, not taking into account all the outside things that demand our attention and get in the way of us achieving our goals. Because of this, setting S.M.A.R.T. goals when planning the success of your real estate practice is critical. What are S.M.A.R.T. Goals? First off, let's just break down what S.M.A.R.T. goals are. Simply put, these goals are: Specific - Your goals have to have real number, as well as real deadlines. A goal of, "I want more listings in my farm area" is NOT a S.M.A.R.T. goal.
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5 Steps for Successful Business Planning in 2014
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Friday Freebie: Business Plan Builder from realtor.com®
With a new year just beginning, now's the perfect time to put pen to paper and calculate what you need to do to achieve your goals in 2014. A business plan isn't set it stone, nor should it be a heavy burden. Rather, it's a roadmap that helps clarify your objectives and how you're going to achieve them. Success stems from having established goals and a plan to achieve them. Fortunately, this week's Friday Freebie makes creating a plan with achievable goals simple. Read on to learn more. Free Business Plan Builder from realtor.com® Realtor.com® offers a free tool that allows you to review last year's results, set goals for the next year, and calculate just how many activities you will need to engage in to reach your objective. This free tool is designed for agents who have set an ambitious goal for prospecting, sales and closings. It includes recommendations for the following, based on your unique business objectives: Webinars Downloads Tools If you're looking for a strong foundation to get your goals back on track, spend five minutes with this free tool from realtor.com®. It'll help you assess the tools you're already using so you can plug in solutions that deliver results. You will see how many prospects you need to acquire each month, and how many follow-up calls you need to make to position yourself to meet your goal. Click here to learn more about this free benefit from realtor.com®.
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'Tis the Season for Success
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5 Steps to Effective 2014 Business Planning
It is hard to believe that there is only a little over one month left in this year. Where did the time go? The holiday season is quickly approaching, bringing the new year in its wake and conjuring up images of all the things that were meant to be accomplished over the past 10 months, but never seemed to be completed. Oh, the guilt of having neglected the reorganization of your storage room! On the other hand, it also brings about images of all the successful tasks that did get done during the year, as well as ideas regarding opportunities and tasks that can be scheduled for the new year. Glorious visions of that newly-organized storage room, the freshness of a new daily organizer, the hope that your email box will eventually clean itself. Visions that won't become a reality unless a plan is put in place! To help you achieve your goals next year, we've compiled five steps to effective 2014 business planning. It's never too early to plan for success. Step 1: Retrospective of 2013 Emerson once stated that, "Shallow men believe in luck. Strong men believe in cause and effect." He was right. Wishing on stars and hoping that things magically turn out the way you want them to be does not work. Looking back to 2013, if there are things that did not go the way you wanted them to, then looking at the reason this happened will provide a strong foundation for your 2014 planning. In particular, answer the following questions: What was your particular focus for 2013? Did you achieve it or how close did you get to achieving it? If you did not achieve your goal, what prevented you from doing so? What could have been done to remove those obstacles? What worked? What didn't work? What reporting did you use to track your progress? Did you track your progress? What resources were pinpointed as being potentially beneficial for the future? What resources are no longer helpful and should be discarded? Who provided you feedback or insight that was especially helpful? What key events took place that changed your focus or aided in your staying on track? Can they be repeated? What new things did you learn about you, your clients, your business, the industry? What mistakes did you make? What did you learn from these mistakes?  
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5 Questions to Ask Yourself for a Successful 2014
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Pump Up Your Sales with New Twists
Have you noticed that business today is facing a bit of a challenge? With costs of doing business changing, today's large and small businesses are overwhelmed, overloaded and stressed to find new ways to save money, time and streamline. If you are struggling to figure out what to do and are looking to pump up your real estate sales, here are a few key activities that can help you take action: Amp up your attitude Change opens the door to look for more creative solutions, so focus on how to enthusiastically embrace new innovative approaches to what appear to be obstacles. Begin with identifying the possible positive outcomes that spur creativity. Every change reveals new opportunities that would ordinarily be lost in the mundane and routine! Investigate options When markets get tough, the tough go back to basics, get creative and become intensely focused in every aspect of how their business functions to discover new ways to deliver their products and services. When sales stall--redesign, rework and reignite new processes in how you deliver those services and the experience of your customers to pump up and refresh your service model. Look at how strategic partnerships can expand your service options. Change is a great motivator to turn up the heat and initiate new relationships and pursue new solutions. See: Mike White on how to create strategic partnerships that pay
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Friday Freebie: Free Tools from realtor.com®
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Friday Freebie: Business Plan Builder from realtor.com®
Now is a perfect time to reassess and calculate what you need to do to get your goals on track! As we move towards mid-year, it's time to put pen to paper to figure out what is working (and what isn't). A business plan isn't set it stone, nor should it be a heavy burden. Rather, it's a roadmap that helps clarify your objectives and how you're going to achieve them. Success stems from having established goals and a plan to achieve them. Fortunately, our latest Friday Freebie makes creating a plan with achievable goals simple. Read on to learn more. Free Business Plan Builder from realtor.com® Realtor.com® offers a free tool that allows you to review last year's results, set goals for the next year, and calculate just how many activities you will need to engage in to reach your objective. This free tool is designed for agents who have set an ambitious goal for prospecting, sales and closings. It includes recommendations for the following, based on your unique business objectives: Webinars Downloads Tools If you're looking for a strong foundation to get your goals back on track, spend five minutes with this free tool from realtor.com®. It'll help you assess the tools you're already using so you can plug in solutions that deliver results. You will see how many prospects you need to acquire each month, and how many follow-up calls you need to make to position yourself to meet your goal. Click here to learn more about this free benefit from realtor.com®.
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Plan for Success in 2013: Advice from Alex Perriello and Sherry Chris
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Holiday Deal: 2013 Business Plan (and Training!) from Market Leader
It's December--the year is winding down, and savvy agents are beginning to look ahead to 2013. Our latest holiday deal aims to help REALTORS® do just that. Market Leader's 2013 Real Estate Business Plan is a free-to-download guide that empowers agents to achieve definable goals. It does this by helping agents: Understand consumer needs - By understanding potential clients, you are better able to connect with them. Today's consumer begins their real estate search online, but are often overloaded with information. Market Leader shows you how to differentiate yourself online and learn how to communicate with tech savvy consumers. Identify challenges facing the agent - It's all about the leads. Learn how to generate leads, engage them, and win their business, all while having fun. See what bad habits are holding you back and how to evaluate your online presence. Explore the tools needed for success - From a straightforward website to diversified lead generation, Market Leader shows you what you need to connect with the digital consumer. Most important, though, are action-oriented goals that are clearly defined.
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Why Every Real Estate Agent Needs a Real Business Plan
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10 Steps to Becoming a Successful Real Estate Agent
Working in real estate requires hard work and dedication, but the rewards are plenty. Real estate offers excellent income potential, flexible work hours and freedom to set your own pace. But working in this field is like anything else. You need the right education, training and drive to compete with the best in the biz. To get started, follow the steps below to ensure your future success and profitability. Step 1: Get a Good Education Knowledge is power, and the more knowledge you have about real estate, the more clients you'll obtain. Not only will more clients lead to more listings, it will eventually turn into more money. Following are the top real estate schools as ranked by the U.S. News and World Report: University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia: The Wharton School's real estate department offers concentrations in real estate at three levels: undergraduate, MBA, and doctoral. University of Wisconsin – Madison: Wisconsin's School of Business offers undergraduate, MBA and Ph.D. programs in business administration with a real estate concentration. University of California – Berkeley: The Hass School of Business offers undergraduate and graduate programs in real estate, including an MBA with a real estate concentration. University of Georgia: The Terry College of Business offers a real estate major for undergraduates in addition to MBA and Ph.D. degrees in the field. University of Southern California: USC's Price School of Public policy offers a Master of Real Estate Development degree as well as a certificate in real estate development.
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An Agent's Dirty Dozen of "Do Nots" - Part 2
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An Agent’s Dirty Dozen of "Do Nots" - Part 1
Imagine life as an agent where the failure landmines have already been scouted, freeing you to focus on real estate. You immediately avoid 12 "Do Nots," saving you time, energy, exasperation and possibly your career. Taken from years of experience consulting hundreds of agents across the nation, I have identified the top mistakes agents make and paired them with my most effective advice in order to create solutions you can readily apply. If you are afraid of prospecting, unsure about how much technology is enough, and frustrated that your day is more white hot treadmill than lucrative career, read on – it just might make a difference in your life. Do Not... 1. Move too quickly or hardly move at all. There is an impatience with real estate licensees that creates an environment for making quick decisions on important topics. For example, they want a website, so they go online, search out an affordable template, pay the money and throw something out into cyberspace and they call it "good." Looking closely at the material, however, it is dated, obviously a template, does not reflect their personality, and often has clerical errors in the text. Or they go the other end of the spectrum and keep a to do list that never ever gets addressed. Making money is more important than building a sound business foundation. Recommendation: Slow down and define exactly what is that you wish to achieve. Talk to your peers and get recommendations from trustworthy sources. Make your decision with research under your belt and your objectives clearly in mind.
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Prepare Now to Sell More Homes in 2013
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To Delegate or Not to Delegate
Guest contributor Scott Newman of REALTOR®Mag says: I think Jay-Z put it best when he said, "I'm not a businessman; I'm a business, man." He understands, as do all the top-producing real estate professionals out there, that in order to be a success in any professional endeavor you need to run your business like a business. That means controlling your empire from the top down in a well-defined and well-managed hierarchy. Why is this important? Simple. In order to continue to grow your business and thus your earning potential, you need to make decisions on how your organization will function—which means making some tough decisions on what tasks to handle and what tasks to delegate or outsource. I am going to break down some of the tasks and responsibilities that have many agents struggling to decide whether to delegate or outsource in an effort to make best use of time for the long-term health of your business. Web site With so many of our buyers turning to the Internet to search for properties, having a great Web site is no longer a luxury—it's a must-have. I constantly come across Web sites that are nothing more than a template thrown up on a domain, and that is a recipe for disaster. Those types of sites have absolutely no SEO value whatsoever, and are seen as cheap and unhelpful by consumers.
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Tips, Tricks and Tools for Your Business Plan
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Plan Your Work and Work Your Plan
Our CEO, Victor Lund, is always saying it: "Plan your work and work your plan." And he's usually saying it when he's trying to motivate our team to do the things we don't want to do. He's a smart guy; he knows that it's easy to remember the things you enjoy but conveniently easy to forget the things you dislike. Technology Can Help What are the things most real estate agents don't enjoy? Cold calling is a good example. It's essential for your business, but it's the last thing you want to do. So you put it off . . . to your own detriment. Instead of continuing this pattern with cold calls and the other tasks you dread, it might be time to find ways to keep yourself on track. Technology can help; here are a few suggestions: CRMs Invest in a CRM. Customer Relationship Management tools organize contacts and automate some of the tasks for keeping in touch with those contacts. In fact, some CRMs offer pre-programmed activity plans with calendar reminders. Read more about CRMs Find a CRM Transaction Management Many transaction management tools also include a calendar to remind you about important tasks. These tend to be transaction-specific (linked to a certain listing), rather than related to general business development (like cold calling), but they can be helpful in reminding you to check-in on whether or not documents have been signed, etc. Read more about Transaction Management Find a Transaction Management tool
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Your Next Social Media Bible, Courtesy of Matt Heinz
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5 Local Directories to Bolster Your Online Reputation
According to the National Association of REALTORS®, reputation was the second most important factor when choosing an agent. Consumers are researching online and looking for a good brand presence and strong online footprint via online directories and social networks. The phone may ring a few more times this month because you read this article, so read on to discover more ways to brand yourself online. Increase your online presence by sharing your brand and contact information within several online directories. The conversion rate for local directory marketing can be up to 50% in some directories, which is significantly higher than traditional advertising like print and radio. That means that you could convert 1 in 2 leads into a potential customer!
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Top 5 Time-Saving Tips for REALTORS®
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Is That Tech Investment Worth It?
Summer is winding down and, for many real estate professionals, this means preparing for budget season. Now that we're well into the third fiscal quarter, you're probably just starting to think about how to best allocate your resources in 2013. Should you set aside money for the rumored iPhone 5, or would finally investing in a CRM make more sense? When considering a new tech purchase, it's easy to be distracted by the "wow" factor of the latest gadgets without thinking about their often high price tag. In order to preserve your bottom line, think of that new phone or software as more than just a toy--it's a tool that can help your business grow! In order to decide if a potential tool is a worthy investment, ask yourself if the benefit gained is greater than the money spent. Does it save you time? Will it streamline your workflow? Is it something that you will use frequently? If it's something that you will only use once or twice, it's probably best to just hold off. If you do decide that a new gadget or software program is a worthy investment, here are a few things to keep in mind in order to maximize its value.
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How “healthy” is your RE business?
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What Is A Personal Brand, and Why Should I Care?
Guest contributor Karli Larson of ePropertySites.com says: Honing your personal brand is one of the most important aspects of a successful career. A personal brand is the association between your name and a particular product or service, and in the real estate world, a carefully crafted personal brand can have an enormous impact on your visibility and success as an agent. Consider the products or services that come to mind with the following names: Martha Stewart. Steve Jobs. George Foreman. These celebrity names are more than just representations of a famous television personality, technology guru, and professional boxer. These names have become synonymous with specific and well-known products as the result of strong personal branding. Whether or not you like, use, or purchase their products, you know who they are and you know what they sell. And that is successful marketing.
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Budget Season: Will You Be Making These 3 Marketing Expenses?
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The ‘Scientific Method’ for Marketing Success
Reading an article on SearchEngineWatch.com brought me back to my high school science class with a jolt. All it took were two words: "scientific method." Now you're back there with me, right? Perhaps your memory of the scientific method isn't going to be as sharp as the memories of your bad perm or your crush-worthy lab partner, so we're going to give you a quick refresher that just might improve the effectiveness of your real estate marketing! Scientific Method: The Basics Essentially, the scientific method requires measurable proof in order to validate a theory. This proof is obtained systematically, through experimentation, observation, and measurement. So what does this have to do with your real estate business? Well, you can follow some of these same steps in order to determine which channels are most effective for marketing your listings. 1) Ask the right question. The questions you'll want to ask should sound like, "Is [marketing channel, i.e. PPC advertising] a good place to spend my advertising dollars?" This approach will also work for assessing the effectiveness of listing syndication. If you're looking at your syndication strategy, you'll want to ask a question like, "Is [syndication site, i.e. Zillow or Trulia] delivering leads for me?"
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Whitepaper: How and Why to Retain Tenants
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What’s driving the changes in the real estate market and how will they impact your business?
What’s driving the changes in the real estate market and how will they impact your business? Ian Morris of Market Leader, Inc. and Steve Murray of REAL Trends, Inc. are industry leaders who answer this question and offer valuable insights in their new book, Game Plan: How Real Estate Professionals Can Thrive in an Uncertain Future.Ian Morris will share “The 10 Trends That Will Drive the Next 5 Years,” featuring key findings from Game Plan on the evolving real estate environment and the trends you need to watch.When:                                            Friday, August 5Time:                                             10:00 AM Pacific / 1:00 PM EasternCost:                                              NONETo Register:                                   https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/538866571 Who should attend:                       Real estate brokers and agents You’ll learn about: 10 trends that could affect your business Factors affecting brokerages and sales professionals Real estate challenges and opportunities Steps to thriving in the ever-changing industry You’ll learn how to create your game plan for the future and help your business thrive for years to come! Your questions are welcome in this live Q&A format.  
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HomeGain Releases 2nd Quarter 2011 National Home Values Survey Results
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Tip for Success
"Plan your work for today and every day, then work your plan." Thanks, Margaret Thatcher! That's our point exactly. One of the most important ways to ensure success is to plan for it. As a real estate agent in today's competitive market, creating a plan for growing your business is absolutely essential.  
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It's Not Too Late to Get Your 2011 Business Plan for Free
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