Guerilla Training Blog by Matt Jones

Learning from Failure: Lesson Two.

In the last installment, I compared the restaurant manufacturing operation with real estate. In this installment, we’ll look at a restaurant as a sales organization. While the back of the house (the kitchen) is all about manufacturing, the front of the house (the dining room) is all about sales. Meeting customers, setting expectations and exceeding them, and attention to detail are crucial elements in any sales organization. A restaurant is no exception. Everything is important — from the elegant music, to the dress code of the staff, to the words ... Read More »

We Were Almost Bankrupt! (Guest Post by Jerry Ryan)

The final article in Matt’s Max-Bang series last week (the one on cutting your overhead) really hit the nail on the head.  We did exactly what that article says, and it saved our business.  I told my story to Matt and he suggested that I share it with his readers in a guest post, so here goes. Early last year, our real estate practice was on the verge of bankruptcy.  My wife and I have been in real estate for ten years, but as with a lot of agents, the ... Read More »

The Most Important 5 Seconds of Any Real Estate Transaction

For every closing… every single deal… there is that one moment… that one crucial moment where things can go terribly wrong but don’t. The “tipping point” of any transaction where if you handle it right the result is a commission check, and if you handle it wrong, there is the frustration of yet another missed opportunity. Sure, you may tell yourself that the lead was just a tire-kicker — a poor quality lead — but in your heart of hearts you know that it really came down to that moment… ... Read More »

Becoming a Mega-Producer (Part 6 of 7)

Leveraging by Team Building WHAT’S IN THIS INSTALLMENT? 1. THE DIFFERENT TEAM MODELS 2. THE LEVERAGE TEAM 3. MOVING TO MANAGEMENT In the previous installments, I’ve discussed many aspects of building a growing and successful real estate business at a time when real estate professionals are failing at record rates. With 86% of new real estate professionals not making it to their first license renewal, our industry turns over an amazing one-third of all our agents every single year! However, even with these dismal statistics, there are a few agents ... Read More »

Don’t Throw Out the Baby with the Bathwater!

I was talking to a veteran agent the other day who’s seen a lot of changes during his 10-plus years practicing real estate.  Like many of us, he’s been sold program after program and has wasted thousands of dollars on many of the “latest and greatest” ways of solving the age-old problem: finding that next customer. We talked about some of the dumb ideas we’d both tried, from walking neighborhoods handing out expensive fliers and refrigerator magnets, to personal brochures, to fancy newsletters, to various homes magazines… you name it, ... Read More »

Zillow: Checkmate!

Brad Inman says “Checkmate!” Yesterday Brad Inman, real estate industry pioneer and founder of Inman News, commented on the Zillow (NASDAQ: Z) acquisition of chief rival Trulia (NYSE: TRLA) in an early morning press release: “In my view, this is checkmate. Soon, Zillow will control the chessboard, like Amazon does the publishing industry. The only meaningful consumer destination, Amazon, after many savvy moves, now controls pricing, merchandising, the data and the market. Soon, Zillow will control the pricing, the listings, the merchandizing and, for sure, the consumer.” That is a ... Read More »

Quick Answer Series: What Do You Think of Farming?

It’s a bad idea.  Here’s why.  It comes down to “cost per lead”.  I’ll show you.  Let’s take a typical market where the average sale price is $206,500 and the average commission side is 2.6%.  That means that the average Gross Commission Income (GCI) is $5,369.  According to real estate “experts” an agent should budget 20% of GCI for marketing.  I’ve even heard numbers as high as 25%!  (Incidentally, the rest of the entire business world budgets less than 10% of revenue for marketing, but what do they know?) I ... Read More »

Quick Answer Series: Just Say No to SEO!

I’m often asked, “Matt, what do you think of SEO?”. The short answer is not very much!  I’ll explain.  First, most of what is known as SEO (or Search Engine Optimization) is really a misnomer.  When companies call you to sell you their SEO service, they are not really talking about optimizing your website for search engines, but rather they are talking about trying to fool search engines.  But I’m getting ahead of myself.  Let me back up a minute. Last year, according to the National Association of REALTORS® 2008 ... Read More »

Results of Last Week’s Survey

Last week I invited you, my readers to participate in a “State of the Industry” survey.  Many of you participated — in fact, enough of you did that we had a statistical confidence level of 95.5% with only a 4.5% margin of error.  In other words, our survey results are more accurate than most of the political polls you read and hear about these days. So let me share with you the results of the survey and some of my interpretations regarding those results and ask you what you think ... Read More »

How Many Homebuyers Are In Your Market?

Ever wonder how many people are buying and selling homes in your market today?  Take a wild guess!  Wilder.  Now double it.  You’re probably still low.  I’ll show you exactly how to find your own accurate number. First you need to log into your MLS and find out how many transactions closed in the last twelve months.  Write that number down.  In my MLS, the total number of closed sales in the last twelve months was 5,425.  For each closed transaction, there was, by definition, one buyer and one seller. ... Read More »

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