Although we are literally hearing some new development or some new restriction on the freedoms we are so used to almost daily, business in Real Estate seems to be mostly business as usual. I am really concerned that there are some serious levels of a false sense of security right now. Many of us are busy because of our actions in February prior to corona and therefore its not right now that I am concerned about or even the next 2-3 weeks in terms of sales and income, it's the next 30-60 days that I am worried about, even if things do return to some level of normal in a month. Here is a question I want you to consider - are you busy servicing the business you have (current pendings, current buyers, active sellers) or are you busy generating new business? When people go into panic mode we naturally go into protect mode and "close out" mode, similar to how we behave before a vacation. That behavior, although productive and good for servicing our immediate to near future income, does nothing for our business 30-60 days from now and those are the days I am most concerned about.
Come June or so there’s going to be two types of agents, those that will be having a gang busters busy month. Meaning probably a record month handling 2-3 times the normal amount of transactions and the rest will be the agents looking around wondering how and why you are so busy. Why is this? Well for starters, there should be plenty to go around because of the backlog of buyers and sellers who put their plans on hold the only question will be who will be working that business and the answer to that is pretty simple actually. The answer is those who are making the contacts, connections and follow ups on a regular basis during this time, even when we know most aren't going to be taking action today.
So what can we do while in quarantine the next month or so (hopefully!)? Here are my thoughts and ideas on what you can and should be doing:
1. Have a Daily Social/News Media Plan... Meaning it goes in your schedule when you are on it and are intentional about what you are doing with it. I recommend limiting your time spent on social media and watching the news COMBINED to no more than 90 minutes daily. As hard as it may be, do not START your day with news right now. I don’t mind you ending it or even getting caught up at dinner but do not start your day on social media or news, save it for after 5-6p.
2. Get Active in Your Community Now...Meet your neighbors, host Social Distancing Parties (be mindful), Create a neighborhood facebook group or if one exists be the leader, be the resource. Don’t be salesy, don’t ask for business. They will ask you. Be prepared to answer the following questions from potential customers:
How are you handling showings (wipes, virtual - have sellers walk the house, be present)?
How are you meeting with buyers? (virtual buyer consults, virtual showings, zoom, facetime, etc)
How do you get paperwork signed? All digital anyways!
Who’s even moving right now? Buyers who have to buy and sellers who have to sell. There’s still divorces, deaths, financial strain, INVESTORS (will talk about in a sec), etc
Why should I sell now? Less competition from other sellers...there will be a mad rush come May/June do you want to get lost in the shuffle or sell to a buyer or HAS to buy?
Why should I buy now? Two words...Interest Rates...don’t have a crystal ball but what I do know is rates can fluctuate based on demand...they already went up 10 days or so ago because lenders couldn’t keep up with the re-fi’s they’ll come back down a bit now and then shoot up again when this is all over.
How can we conduct a closing right now? Separate rooms, separate times, distancing, wipes, etc
3. Your BEST client right now will be Investors...I know what you all are going to say OMG I hate investors. Well you may want to change your tune on that. Why? Because investors get greedy when people get fearful, just look at Warren Buffet’s quote (and actions). Be prepared for low ball offers on your listings and investors surfacing. Where can you find them? Investor fb groups, landlords of rented properties, your CRM, past leads, past client db, etc. They are NOT fazed by this whatsoever.
4. Take this as a chance to break into a new source...There are a handful of realtors out there paralyzed by fear and unknown right now, which means you have a greater chance of breaking into FSBO + EXP when far fewer people are calling on them. The good news? Expireds + FSBO need you NOW more than ever, because consumers are now looking to experts for advice on what is going on in the market, and what to expect. GO AFTER YOUR UNFAIR SHARE (with hand sanitizer).
5. Take this chance to implement and learn...You’ve probably been to conferences, you’ve probably been to our summit or retreat. Go back and find those notes. What did you circle or star that you have not implemented yet? We always put the notes, videos, etc from our events online go find them and use this time to actually master something!
6. Double the amount of people you talk to, daily... If that's too aggressive, add 10 more contacts. But either way, we should be INCREASING who we are talking to. Expect your contacts per hour to INCREASE and your conversion to DECREASE - Don’t be as forceful right now. Think about future business if you sense they are not comfortable.
7. Use video now more than ever...facebook lives with updates, new listings, sales, etc. Take advantage of social media becoming immune to corona talk. There will be more attention to non-corona topics right now. Remember the basics of facebook...get to 5k friends, tell stories not just canva images, go live like crazy.
8. Consider Partnering with or Starting your own I-buyer program... All of the sudden the idea of an instant sale becomes more attractive. No agents, no showings, no hassle and less time. Get your scripts ready to compete as well. I buyers will lower their % of value that they will pay because of uncertain times. To start one you need a sexy name, landing page and a marketing strategy. If you could turn it into an app that’d be even better.
9. Evaluate your expenses and cut out what's not working... If you’re buying a lead source or you subscribe to a program that has a low ROI for you, now would be a good time to re-evaluate that. Your cost per lead will INCREASE during this time. Why do you think zillow announced half price for current customers? Take the detail report of your P & L and cut subscriptions right now.
We're all in this together. Let's stick together, stay connected and make the best of the situation we are all in.