By Drew Burks
What’s in a number?
I think we can all agree that not much has changed in the real estate industry over the years; so when social media took the world by storm, it was exciting to see how well it was received by real estate practitioners. Unfortunately, there is an underlying principle being taught to practitioners and it is causing more frustration with social media than anything.
You see, no matter how great a tool is, if you use it incorrectly you will get less than desirable results!
I have attended just about every REALTOR® training & coaching event available to our industry over the last eight to nine years, and most are all teaching the same flawed principle. It is this principle that causes practitioners to struggle to close more deals.
So what is the principle reason most real estate pros struggle to close more deals?
The No. 1 reason is very simple… most of us were told to focus on the wrong thing: “Sales is a numbers game!”
Sales is NOT a numbers game! Yes, I know this flies in the face of everything we have been told, so let me explain. Focusing on “leads” is all wrong; this strategy is creating more struggles for you than profits.
Let’s look at a quick example of a pretty standard exercise given to practitioners:
You have to make X contacts every day to set Y appointments. You need to go on X appointments to get Y listings. You need to take X listings to successfully close Y escrows.
When you have this focus you are missing out on the real opportunity, the opportunity to focus on the client, the conversation, and the relationship.
The “it’s a numbers game” philosophy prevents you from being authentic and leaves you feeling in a constant state of pressure to close someone. This leads to an overwhelming amount of rejection and stress. You can only deal with this for so long before you burn out or quit!
Most people are not comfortable with this, which explains why so many struggle to do more deals. When you know deep down that you are focused on closing a customer to meet your numbers, it eats away at you and creates tension in the client relationship. People can sense they’re being “closed” and it doesn’t feel good. I guess this also explains why so many consumers say they never hear from their real estate practitioner again after the transaction is closed.
So what does any of this have to do with social media? Well, that’s simple.
Social media is all about the conversation! However, most practitioners are trying to use social media with the “it’s a numbers game” philosophy, which just magnifies their frustration and leaves them feeling:
- That social media & blogging are a waste of time.
- That social media & blogging are more passive than active.
Of course they feel this way… they are using social media incorrectly! Social media just gives you the power to do more with much less time and money. Conversations on social media sites are no different than conversations on the phone or in-person.
If we keep our focus on the other person, then our conversations will come from a much more authentic place. When you are authentic with people and demonstrate a genuine interest in helping others, great things start to happen. You will gain many more clients, not leads, and these clients will refer new clients to you.
So if you are struggling to succeed in real estate, take a time out and throw the “numbers game” play book out the window. Don’t focus on how many “leads” or “contacts” you need to make, instead focus on how many authentic conversations you can have with people.
Drew Burks has built a brokerage in San Diego, Dream Design Realty, with a unique twist on an old business model. His Web site is devoted to helping real estate pros succeed with technology: www.WebRealEstateTools.com.
Great insights as always, Drew! Keep up the good work. In today’s world, people want and need a trusted advisor, not a salesperson. Being “closed” should feel creepy to both the closer and the closee.
I totaly agree with you Drew! Treating people as just another number/closing will not get you far in this industry. I think it’s important to communicate with others via social media, phone or in person.
I agree as well. It sounds simple and obvious but the perception of putting the client first is not common.