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No Brown Nosing Required. Your RAISE Is Ready When You Are.

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Brown Noser Be Gone

Good News!  Your Raise Is Effective As Soon As YOU Are.

No Brown-Nosing, glass ceilings, boot licking, politics, nepotism, seniority, annual performance reviews or begging for a raise.

In our real estate world, YOU are your own boss.  That’s good news for hard persistent faithful smart committed motivated workers, bad news for slackers.

Why?

Because the real estate business is pure pay-for-performance.  Want a raise?

“Your raise is effective as soon as you are.”  Marilyn Eiland

3 Questions You Have To Ask Yourself:

  1. When do you want it?
  2. What do you need to do differently? Doing nothing is not an option.
  3. When will you start?  Today?

Stuck In Stupid

Intellectually, it’s seems simple.  If we’ve created success in the past, in the present, if we do what we’ve always done, won’t we always get what we’ve always gotten?  Nope!

Why?

Because in my world, and maybe yours, everything that surrounds me is changing.  ReInvention, obsolesce, options, upgrades, choices, knowledge, value, creation, young-guns, expectations, cannibalism and Black Swans — boom, echo and ricochet — hourly.  If I stand still and things around me are vibrating with change, my comfortable position will wobble out of orbit and any success I’m currently enjoying will inevitably vanish.  It’s real estate entropy in action.

To create break away impact, the first thing I need to do is make sure I’m not “Stuck In Stupid”.  In reality, if I always do what I’ve always done, I’ll get less and less and eventually nothing.

What To Do Now

There’s a constellation of small and large changes you can make and actions you take.  The main thing is action.  We have to start…TODAY.

Behold, 15  Anti-Stuck-In Stupid, simple and mostly free or inexpensive things you can immediately do to create the raise you deserve.

  1. When someone asks you, “How’s the market?”, for the love of God, don’t go flaccid with your answer.  Consider this sort of approach.
  2. It sounds lame, it’s not, it’s profitable. Wear your name badge while you work. Don’t keep what you do a secret, a name badge is a visual reminder to your friends and attracts Q&A opportunities from strangers.  Do it.  Don’t have one, order now.
  3. Wear car-signs, not literally, but on your car. Many think this is seriously lame too.  Those that religiously do, report serendipitous listing and selling opportunities.  Ummmm….don’t speed.  Oh, don’t wear them on a listing appointment, it’s like sending a “here’s a listing opportunity Bat Signal” to the neighborhood.  When on listing appointments, go stealth mode.  Don’t have a set, no problem, order now.
  4. Take your friends to a super-cool movie. It’s less expensive than running a dumb print ad, it’s personal, it’s relevant, it’s generous and it’s a fun way to create on-purpose and in-person conversation and contact.  You wanna have fun don’t cha? Here’s how.
  5. Start wagging your tail. Log into your Facebook account between appointments, during the lull at Open House, between opportunity calls on floor duty (if you have this and it’s productive), before you go beddy-bye and at least once a working day.  See what your friends are doing, make comments, wisely status update, post photos and links.
  6. Add a dash of  ” WOW, how’d you do that?”, when sending emails.   Here’s how.
  7. Stop bashing your head against cement!   Join a club, a tribe, a team, a cause or a mob of people who are passionate about the things you are passionate about.  Psychographics is the future of your future. Get started.
  8. Clean house, Fix or Fire and kick ass.  Don’t take an over priced listing. Counsel with all your sellers this week, reduce or raise the listing price if needed, merchandise, stage, declutter and freshen as needed, double check your property marketing (broadcast, pictures, promotional copy, etc.) and fix what’s lame or fire .  This will free up your time, money and emotion and position your current inventory of the spring rush.  Do it.  If you can’t Fix It, Fire It.
  9. Stop asking your current clients for referrals after the transaction closes.  Start earning and asking for referral recommendations during the transaction. Use the Daisy Chain Reaction Technique.
  10. Stop avoiding personal contact.  Seriously, set a goal to engage in at least 5 in-person and on-purpose conversations a day (phone or live, not text, email, status update)  Think Pinball Principle.
  11. Stop shouting about YOU and start focusing on THEM. Nobody cares if you’re #1, they care that YOU treat THEM like they are #1. How to keep people from thinking your full of crap – a  few ideas.
  12. Always remember, There Are Only 3 Reasons you don’t have more listings and sales. Do something on this list today.
  13. Stop treating people the way YOU want to be treated. Start treating people they way THEY want to be treated. The Golden Rule is broken.
  14. Your old leads are your best leads. Call them all today.  Yes.  Call them all today.  Talking to people is what you do for a living.  Do it now.
  15. Fail faster, succeed sooner. Russell Shaw shares the secret to becoming a Top Listing Agent.

Will You Give Yourself A Raise?

Don’t count on others to give you a raise. You’re the boss, act like one….take action today.

Cheers and thanks for reading and if you think this article is worth a crap, forward to a friend;-)

Ken Brand - Prudential Gary Greene, Realtors. I’ve proudly worn a Realtor tattoo for over 10,957+ days, practicing our craft in San Diego, Austin, Aspen and now, The Woodlands, TX. As a life long learner, I’ve studied, read, written, taught, observed and participated in spectacular face plant failures and giddy inducing triumphs. I invite you to read my blog posts here at Agent Genius and BrandCandid.com. On the lighter side, you can follow my folly on Twitter and Facebook. Of course, you’re always to welcome to take the shortcut and call: 832-797-1779.

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26 Comments

26 Comments

  1. Greg Vincent

    February 1, 2010 at 8:44 am

    Great article Ken. Agents can over-complicate things & waste so much time procrastinating over what to say or what to do. And, many waste so much time working with overpriced-unmotivated sellers or don’t connect with the seller to find the real motivation before they lose the listing to an agent who does find the seller’s right motivation button.

    Tip #15 says it all. “Fail faster, succeed sooner”…. Have a go. It’s the best way to get that pay rise.

    • Ken Brand

      February 1, 2010 at 1:54 pm

      Thanks Greg. You’re right, “Fail Faster – Succeed Sooner” is what works. Doing nothing doesn’t. Cheers and thanks for the comment.

  2. Nanette Labastida

    February 1, 2010 at 8:54 am

    great great post Ken – today i was planning on getting out my work/goal journal and doing my February to do list, and look – you did it for me!!

    • Ken Brand

      February 1, 2010 at 3:59 pm

      Thanks for the feedback Nanette, love all serve all. Cheers.

  3. Lani Rosales

    February 1, 2010 at 9:34 am

    Ken, I love that you bridge the gap between old school and new school and I know your clients appreciate you for that. These are all actionable tips, maybe some of our readers will have a better 2010 than they did 2009? 🙂 Thanks!

  4. Ken Brand

    February 1, 2010 at 4:02 pm

    I’m slow but steady. I’m not a smart man, but I know what works when I see it and when I see it, I try to share it. Words of encouragement are always appreciated. 2010 exciting times, eh? Cheers to you and Benn and all hardworking humands:-)

  5. Ken Brand

    February 1, 2010 at 4:03 pm

    I’m slow but steady. I’m not a smart man, but I know what works when I see it and when I see it, I try to share it. Words of encouragement are always appreciated. 2010 exciting times, eh? Cheers to you and Benn and all hardworking humans:-)

  6. Corona Homes

    February 1, 2010 at 8:25 pm

    Ken, you can’t make it any clearer then that, it’s all about ding the business every day whit out doing the business. Be yourself talk to people, let people know what you do.

    • Ken Brand

      February 1, 2010 at 8:51 pm

      “It’s all about doing business everyday, without doing the business…”, Corona Homes, you’ve summed it – Boom. Thanks.

  7. Benjamin Bach

    February 1, 2010 at 8:25 pm

    great stuff!

    • Ken Brand

      February 1, 2010 at 8:52 pm

      Thanks Benjamin. Cheers.

  8. Paula Henry

    February 2, 2010 at 6:18 am

    Ken –

    Always the voice of practical wisdom; putting into practice your years of experience and sharing with all. I know there are a few things here I can use to ramp up my 2010. Thanks!

    • Ken Brand

      February 2, 2010 at 7:09 am

      Thanks Paula, hope some of these ideas, which are not original, but as you’ve shard, “practical” and proven, help you have enjoy a fun and prosperous 2010. Cheers and thanks for your comments:-)

  9. Eric Hempler

    February 3, 2010 at 6:14 pm

    One thing I’ve been trying to study more is whether or not someone should have a Facebook Fan Page. From what I can tell it really isn’t necessary. Judging by this post and countless others it seems to make more sense to have everyone you know on your friend list and send them a Facebook message once in a while, much like you would email or call as well as comment on status, etc. One thing I have done. Instead of creating a Fan Page for my business I’ve created a few fan pages of local areas I like and have invited others to join and in turn that has gotten the attention of others on Facebook. This might be a good way for me to reach others that I may not otherwise meet. But I think I’ll have to be a little cautious of what I do since I don’t want alienate someone from a Fan Page I created since the page is really meant for that particular local place of interest.

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Business Marketing

10 inspirational print brochure examples

We believe that print is nowhere near dead, it is just changing as things go digital, and only the best stand out.

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Below are 10 inspirational print brochure examples that show print is not only alive and kicking, but when infused with a bit of creativity, can make an enormous impression. Gone are the days of horrid clip art and walls of text that overwhelm. Clean typography and design are the name of the game, and added flair can go a long way. Here are some ideas to get you started, click any of the images below to see more photos of each campaign and to dig deeper:

Craft Beer Field Guide

With this fold up brochure guiding Madison’s Craft Beer Week attendees, a vintage vibe is created through color and typography choices, with an emphasis on function and ease of reading. The guide is so enchanting, it is likely that most attendees kept the brochures, a dream for any designer or marketing team!

Italian Loft Brochure

In this Italian Loft Brochure, a classic Tiffany & Co styled blue and chocolate brown highlight the features of this luxury loft community, and is presented in a beautiful, heavyweight cardstock cover that keeps all additional papers that come along with tours. It’s more than just the brochure’s design, it’s the presentation, simplicity, and choice of materials that is eye catching about this print brochure.

Campaign for Freedom

Expressing the dire situation in North Korea, this campaign brochure uses simple to digest infographics and keeps to four colors – black, white, red, and yellow. It is effective for sticking to the point and using bold graphics.

Gourmet Natural Foods

Retailers often go overboard either by offering too many walls of words and facts, or by trying to be clever. Instead, this company’s design focuses on the simple ingredients that goes along with their streamlined, organic-looking containers. This brochure makes you want to go start eating hippie food, even if you’re a cow eater, just because it’s so aesthetically pleasing!

Graphic Designer Portfolio

When a seasoned graphic designer shows off, you can be sure that their presentation will never be an aged headshot of them with bullet points of their accomplishments. No, graphic designers show instead of tell, as below:

Typefamily Brochure

When introducing a typefamily to the world, a designer can choose to slap up a website, or go the traditional, and more elegant route of printing a type booklet explaining the type and giving buyers of the typefamily (font) a closer look at what they are buying. Brilliant.

Yahoo! Brochure

Yahoo’s brochure is a reminder that simple design elements can go a long way – a folding tab, white space, ditching clip art, and keeping consistency between pages all work in harmony to create a quality print brochure.

Antique News Format

In a very clever move, this commercial and residential space is being sold in the form of a large, folding antique- looking newspaper, complete with appropriate fonts and an antique layout, with surprisingly sharp and never cheesy images.

Architect’s Timeline and Story

Promoting an architect’s impressive timeline and story, this print campaign shows the power of red, black and white, making a dramatic impression at a quick glance. Using high quality photography and traditional movie poster tricks, the campaign is stunning.

Our Favorite: Lennar’s Old School Fun

Lennar’s new “Spencer’s Crossing” community brochures got a touch of old school, making the brochure a game that anyone can play. It’s more than a gimmick, it is consistent with their collateral that appeals to the youthful nature of the product and area.

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Business Marketing

Use the ‘Blemish Effect’ to skyrocket your sales

(MARKETING) The Blemish Effect dictates that small, adjacent flaws in a product can make it that much more interesting—is perfection out?

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blemish effect

Presenting a product or service in its most immaculate, polished state has been the strategy for virtually all organizations, and overselling items with known flaws is a practice as old as time. According to marketing researchers, however, this approach may not be the only way to achieve optimal results due to something known as the “Blemish Effect.”

The Blemish Effect isn’t quite the inverse of the perfectionist product pitch; rather, it builds on the theory that small problems with a product or service can actually throw into relief its good qualities. For example, a small scratch on the back of an otherwise pristine iPhone might draw one’s eye to the glossy finish, while an objectively perfect housing might not be appreciated in the same way.

The same goes for mildly bad press or a customer’s pros and cons list. If someone has absolutely no complaints or desires for whatever you’re marketing, the end result can look flat and lacking in nuance. Having the slightest bit of longing associated with an aspect (or lack thereof) of your business means that you have room to grow, which can be tantalizing for the eager consumer.

A Stanford study indicates that small doses of mildly negative information may actually strengthen a consumer’s positive impression of a product or service. Interesting.

Another beneficial aspect of the Blemish Effect is that it helps consumers focus their negativity. “Too good to be true” often means exactly that, and we’re eager to criticize where possible; if your product or service has a noticeable flaw which doesn’t harm the item’s use, your audience might settle for lamenting the minor flaw and favoring the rest of the product rather than looking for problems which don’t exist.

This concept also applies to expectation management. Absent an obvious blemish, it can be all to easy for consumers to envision your product or service on an unattainable level.

When they’re invariably disappointed that their unrealistic expectations weren’t fulfilled, your reputation might take a hit, or consumers might lose interest after the initial wave.

The takeaway is that consumers trust transparency, so in describing your offering, tossing in a negative boosts the perception that you’re being honest and transparent, so a graphic artist could note that while their skills are superior and their pricing reasonable, they take their time with intricate projects. The time expectation is a potentially negative aspect of their service, but expressing anything negative improves sales as it builds trust.

It should be noted that the Blemish Effect applies to minor impairments in cosmetic or adjacent qualities, not in the product or service itself. Delivering an item which is inherently flawed won’t make anyone happy.

In an age where less truly is more, the Blemish Effect stands to dictate a new wave of honesty in marketing.

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Business Marketing

A personalized daily digital marketing checklist

(MARKETING NEWS) For all businesses, it is not only essential to develop an digital marketing strategy, but also necessary to utilize it in order to gain customers, and ultimately make a larger profit. This app can help.

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clearpath digital marketing

There is no doubt that starting your own business can be overwhelming. Along with promoting your business at events, meetings and in person, digital marketing strategies play a key role in the success of a company. For all businesses, it is not only essential to develop an online presence, but also necessary to utilize it in order to gain customers, and ultimately make a larger profit.

Simply creating a website and Facebook page for your business is not enough. However, software tools can help simplify digital marketing. ClearPath is a tool that organizes and creates tasks to optimize your online marketing. By creating to-do lists for you based on your online marketing strategy, you can focus on the areas of marketing that improve your business, all the while receiving useful tips and advice.

Using ClearPath is pretty straightforward and only requires one prerequisite. Before beginning, you must have a website.

If you are already lost, don’t panic. ClearPath can help you develop an online presence. Once your website is linked up, you get to choose the marketing channels that you would like to focus on. These include Search Engine Optimization (SEO), email, social, content, analytics, local, pay-per-click (PPC) and Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO). Again, if you are lost, ClearPath is there to help you strategize.

After ClearPath analyzes your site, they start sending you customized tasks based they believe can improve your online marketing.

As you finish each task, you can simply check it off and it will disappear. New tasks will appear each day, and some may even repeat as they need to be updated.

Whether you are well-versed in digital marketing or not, staying updated with the newest ways to optimize your business online is a constant struggle. Tools like ClearPath give people a place to start. Although I don’t think it can supplement an active and experienced digital marketer, it is a tool that can help small businesses that cannot afford to add to their team yet. At the end of the day, it aims to save you time. And since time is money, your business will hopefully be more profitable.

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