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"Breakthrough Performance Tips"

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10/5/07 Interview with Roger Butcher

Roger Butcher Training
2851 Gold Tailings Court
Rancho Cordova, CA 95670

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Analysis of Real Estate Business

  1. In the last three years, the percentage of buyers and sellers who locate their agents online has grown from 75% to 83%; the top 4% of agents are doing about 37% of all real estate business.
  2. In many parts of the country, real estate has become a buyers' market since the peak in October 2005, but agents who use a good system are maintaining high rates of closings; an important component of an effective system is technology.
Technology Tips for Agents

  1. Agents need to have a laptop computer for making demonstrations to consumers; agents should have videos on for-sale-by-owner, expired listings, buyers and pricing to show consumers.
  2. Automating marketing and having a definite plan are musts; organize a good database.
  3. Use a 24-hour call hotline tied into your web site.
Web Site Strategy

  1. Having a comprehensive web site is important; Butcher recommends Advanced Access' 900-page sites, which include community links and 20+ free reports to attract buyers and sellers.
  2. Web visitors can see the report titles, but to get the full reports, they must enter name/address/email address; the free report is immediately emailed to them, and the contact info is emailed to the agent.
Challenges for Agents

  1. Being able to convert leads is just as important as generating leads; agents must be able to talk with buyers and sellers to discover their needs and then dialogue about the marketplace in relation to those needs.
  2. A key element of success in today's market is being able to price listings correctly; in cases where desperate sellers are trying to sell a house that they bought at the top of the market and can no longer afford the mortgage, an agent should send the seller back to the lender to renegotiate an affordable payment.
Referral Business

  1. Butcher recommends that agents aim to have 50% of their business be from referrals and 50% newly generated; having multiple streams of income is prudent.
  2. Build a database of everyone you know and refine it; it is six times easier to generate business from someone you know than from a stranger; 78% of prospects will give referrals to or choose to work with the agent with whom they have had the most favorable contact.
  3. Although 89% of customers say they will use their agent again, only 11% do so because of a lack of follow-up from the agent.

  1. Branding is becoming more prevalent in the market; it is easy to waste money on materials printed with your face and name.
  2. The best way for agents to brand is to regularly send postcards to their referral list (limit the quantity to a reasonable 250 or so); also send postcards to 100-150 households around every property that you list, hold open house for or sell.
  3. The point of branding efforts should be to let people know you are selling houses.
Ways to Stay in Touch

  1. Using a postcard system keeps your name in front of your contacts; repetition makes them think of you when they or a friend need an agent.
  2. Letters and email are also effective; Butcher's letter-system software includes a package of letters that refer people to the agent's web site-a good marketing campaign ties together all the elements that agents use.
Expired Listings

  1. Expired listings are an excellent resource, especially for brand new agents (who should stay away from for-sale-by owners); expired listings are easy to find, and sellers have an explicit interest in selling, plus a price at which the home won't sell has been identified.
  2. With basic training, agents can work expired listings easily and effectively; Butcher's expired listing video is a powerful tool for agents to show.
Open Houses

  1. An open house should be promoted in advance with a density marketing campaign.
  2. First, send out announcement postcards on a new listing immediately, timed to be delivered on a Thursday or Friday; follow with a card to be delivered on the next Tuesday announcing an open house the next weekend.
  3. On that same Tuesday, also post a sign on the lawn giving details about the future open house; running flag streamers from the corners of the house to the sign attract attention..
  4. A less expensive marketing approach than mailing is to hand deliver flyers announcing the listing, the subsequent open house and the eventual house sale; include your web site info on the back plus a listing of enticing reports that can be downloaded-the technique gets people coming to you.
  5. New agents who don't have listings of their own to show should consider asking other agents if the new agent could help market a property.
Time Organization

  1. Some agents waste as much as 80% of their time; they need to have a daily plan and a weekly marketing schedule to stay focused on a workable system.
  2. Employing technology enables agents to work more efficiently and capture more leads.
  3. Using a proven system saves agents the time, energy and money of figuring one out themselves.
Handling Competition

  1. Statistics show that 90% of the agents pursue 10% of the business, while 10% of the agents control 90% of all the listings, sales and commissions.
  2. To eliminate 90% of the competition: dress professionally (like you deserve business), always be 15 minutes early for appointments (never be late); return all your calls and emails every two hours; learn to ask for what you want-top agents know how to turn prospects on by talking in real estate terms.
Favorite Web Sites for Productivity

  1. is an important resource about what is going on nationally-markets are not just local.
  2. Work with your own web site and your company's web site.
  3. Agents are being successful in posting properties on Craigslist.
Closing Advice for Agents

  1. Focus on a handful of good ideas and really work them.
  2. Butcher's new book, The 21 Proven Strategies of How to Succeed in a Buyer's Market is available to Society members at no charge; contact his office as listed above.
Contact Information for Roger Butcher:

(v) 916-852-9124 ext 123
(f) 916-852-9567

Real Estate Sites & Tools in this Briefing:

Roger Butcher Training:
Advanced Access: