Are You Getting Through?

Every
few weeks or so, I take a look at my email “junk” folder out of morbid
curiosity.  It’s borne of a few things
I’m thinking at the time: (1) how good is the filter I have in place; (2) is
there anything in there that should have come to me in my regular folder but
didn’t; and (3) how many millions of dollars have I
missed out on because I didn’t respond to the Nigerian prince with my banking
information in time –
that one’s always a kick in shins. I
think I’m smart enough to determine what’s junk and what’s not without the help
of a filter/folder (but it is nice to have something do it for me).  We
as humans are equipped with an internal “junk mail” filter in our heads –
some are better than others –
that we use every day. 
In
the real estate world, this could not be more true for both agents and
customers.  Before I go on, though, let
me explain that just because something is viewed as junk mail doesn’t mean
there’s no intrinsic value to it –
but there IS NO VALUE to it if it doesn’t get opened.  Can we agree on that? 
Don’t
kill the messenger, my agent friends, but the following items/practices have
become or are quickly becoming “junk mail” in the eyes of a potential customer:
•  Facebook
posts for listings/open houses
•  Facebook
Live videos/Instagram
Stories
•  Offers
of a free market analysis
•  A
YouTube video about a certain program/initiative
There
are a lot more things that fit into the this category, but I think you get my
drift.  (Let me say once again: these
items aren’t worthless –
there’s some great information contained in them –
but if they’re not being opened, then they’re not bringing much value to the
table.)  The reason they’re seen this way
is there’s NOTHING that makes them stand out –
ESPECIALLY at first glance.  You can sit
there and say, “That doesn’t apply to me. 
I’ve had a number of people call me off my Facebook posts/offers of a
free market analysis.”  I’m not going to
argue that, but I will say this: if your posts looked like all the others, then
the fact you got someone to call was either down to luck, plain and simple, or
you’ve done something to find favor with the Internet gods.  (I’m leaning more toward the former but won’t
rule out the latter –
wouldn’t want to jinx myself.)  With that
said, though, I’ve seen some very effective methods that agents have employed
to make themselves and/or their messages stand out.  I’m not going to give away their secrets, but
I can certainly help you come up with your own ways to avoid the “junk mail”
filter in customers’ heads. 

The
“junk mail” dilemma applies to customers, too, I assure you. If
you want a top-notch real estate agent to represent you in the purchase of a
home, you’re going to need to make yourself stand out, too.  Seriously, do you want someone who’s just
going to put you in a car and drive you around or someone who’s going to have
an arsenal of talent and experience fully at your disposal to take out the
competition and clear the board FOR YOU? If
you’re using phrases like “I’m not sure if . . .” and “I don’t know if it’s the
right time . . .”, this won’t cause your potential agent to get up and walk
away, but she/he is definitely going to start mentally sliding you over to
her/his “junk mail” folder.  If you
REALLY want their attention and make sure you land squarely in their “Inbox”,
THIS is the very simple statement you should open with: “I’ve already been to a
lender, and I’m qualified –
not just prequalified –
for $XXX,XXXX.  Let’s go look at some
houses!”  But hurry before all those
folks with money from the Nigerian prince go looking at the same houses!  It’ll be a kick in the shins if you don’t.

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