Nailing Your Value Proposition – Day 9 of 30 D2aBB

Why You? Why Your Company? And Why Now?

There is so much written about crafting a value proposition – or an elevator speech. I’ve written about it in the past as well. You can read that post here for information on how to craft it.

What I want to share with you in this post is how dynamic a value proposition can be – and the different version you need at the ready.

Nail Your Value Proposition

A value proposition communicates three things: why you, why your company, and why now. It does so in terms of the benefits for the prospect.

But it can’t be rote memorized. Your value proposition needs to be dynamic. When you explain why you, you need to do it in a way that speaks to your audience. In other words, if I’m speaking to an institutional investor, I may communicate how I produce returns for my clients. If I’m talking to a widow, I may communicate how I take the headaches out of a real estate transaction and simplify the lives of my clients.

You don’t commit intellectual suicide when you are prospecting. You have to think and anticipate. And then act accordingly.

Beyond having dynamic topics to insert into your value prop according to the need of the moment, you need at least 3 versions of your value proposition.

  1. Super Short Form – This is when you have 30 seconds or less. It can happen on a prospecting call when these 30 seconds can earn you the right to continue the conversation for the next couple of minutes. Or it is for the fortuitous meeting. Think about when you are in line at Starbucks and realize the prospect you’ve been pursuing for a year is standing in front of you. You need to be ready.
  2. Long Form – This is when you have 2-3 minutes. You can communicate so much in 180 seconds – if you are prepared.
  3. Written Form – You should be using prospecting letters in your prospecting system. A written version of your value proposition needs to fit in one paragraph. You don’t have much space in a prospecting letter so you need to brief and razor-sharp.

Parting Tips:

  • If you want to sound like every other broker, call a prospect and talk about yourself and what you do. I promise you they don’t care. Focus on how you benefit the prospect.
  • If you are bored delivering your value prop, guess what? They are too. Go back to the drawing board and add some energy and passion.
  • Practice. Then practice some more. Then role play with someone in your office. Then practice some more. I used to tape myself giving different versions of my value prop and then listen to it. Go practice some more.

Here is my question for you. If you were in one of my coaching groups, and I put you on the spot, could you deliver a clear, concise, and compelling value proposition? If not, you’ve got some work to do. You can leave a comment by clicking here.

How to Achieve Virtual Freedom – Day 8 of 30 D2aBB

Anything that Anyone Else Can Do They Should Do

Entrepreneurs suffer from what John Maxwell calls the Law of the Lid. This law says that the entrepreneur is the cap on what can be accomplished. In other words, he or she is the bottle-neck of their own business. Most entrepreneurs I know suffer from some version of this. The truth is just because you can do it better doesn’t mean that you should.

How to Achieve Virtual Freedom

There is one particular conversation I have had with my wife about 4 times now. We had it again just last week.

I want to hire someone to come and clean the house. She doesn’t like to clean (though she does a great job). And I want to free her up so she can spend her time on other things. Seems like a no-brainer, right?

The problem is she doesn’t want a house-cleaner. She stays home with the kids. She feels like it is part of her responsibility to clean the house.

What I think she is missing is that our family would run better if she spent her time on the most important things. My guess is that if I asked her to make a list of the most important things, physically cleaning the house wouldn’t be on it. Spending time with our kids would be on the list. Volunteering in their schools would be on the list. Working out and taking care of herself would be on the list. Have more time for the things that matter – that is real benefit of a house cleaner.

The same is true in your business. What is it that you are doing that you shouldn’t be doing?

Every business owner (all of you CRE brokers are business owners) should achieve virtual freedom by following these 4 simple steps.

4 Simple Steps to Achieve Virtual Freedom and Build Your Team

  1. List all your tasks over the course of a week – If you’ve ever kept a food diary, you get the idea. List everything that you do. Everything. Check emails. Return calls. Create marketing package. Prospecting calls, etc. You are going to have two reactions. The first is you will be surprised at all the things you do. The second is you will be shocked at all the time you waste.
  2. Decide which tasks are the most important – Important tasks aren’t always urgent. They are normally high dollar activities. Prospecting activities. Creating presence in your market. Investing in your team. These are the most important things.
  3. Delegate anything that anyone else can do – Or ask yourself, which of these tasks are the ones only I can do. Everything else becomes a job description for someone else. Keep in mind here what you are worth an hour. If you aren’t sure, just hold on for a few days. I have a post coming up about that.
  4. Consider virtual assistants – I get that some of you don’t have teams. For you, I would consider virtual assistants. I have used them and highly recommend. There are thousands of exceedingly qualified free lance virtual assistants who can do anything from research your prospect list, create marketing packages, graphic design, to manage your email (doesn’t that sound awesome!)

I have some recommended reading for you and some sites if the idea of virtual assistants has tickled your fancy.

So I hope I've stimulated your thinking a little on the possibilities. My question is what is your next step? Who is missing on your team? What other resources have you found useful? You can leave a comment by clicking here.

Build Your Database – Day 4 of 30 D2aBB

Know Your Prospects and How to Pursue Them

Lists. Anyone who sells anything needs a list. A list of prospects. A list of influencers. A list of connectors. Your database is where those lists live.

Build Yoru

I have a coaching client who has a complete database mess. He literally has 3 different databases that live in different places. One list lives in this CRM. One list lives in that CRM. His other list is an excel spreadsheet.

But at least he has a list.

My first years in commercial real estate were full of fits and starts. I didn’t prospect. I simply relied on our company’s presence in the market. Business would just walk in the door or call. Or it wouldn’t. Even if I wanted to prospect, I didn’t have a database.

Again in 2010, I restructured my prospecting focus. I didn’t have a list. So I built one (actually, my assistant did most of the work. I hope you all have a Teresa.)

Regardless of where you are in your career, you need a database full of all the people, prospects, and/or properties in your farm area. It is crucial that you can go pursue the business you want. To do that, you need to know who they are and how to contact them.

My most popular post ever is on the 3 ways to build a database. You can read it here. As a recap, here are the three ways to build your database:

Specialize – Day 3 of 30 D2aBB

Why Specializing Matters and How to Choose What Your Specialty Should Be

My mom’s side of the family is from the Chicago area. I love it up there. When I was younger, I would go spend some time in the summers with family.

One particular summer, my great aunt and uncle took me to a very large house in their neighborhood. Whatever size house just popped in your mind when I said ‘very large,’ think bigger than that. It was the largest house I’d ever seen at the time.

Specialize

The reason for our visit was to see the owner’s garage. He had a four car garage with 8 Ferraris in it. He literally had a lift in each bay with one Ferrari held up over another. The owner walked into the garage from his house wearing a Ferrari racing suit. He was passionate. And incredibly wealthy.

I got to see a 1958 Spider (classic yellow). I sat in one of two F40’s that he had. I remember not being able to move after he strapped in the 5 point harness. I did not get to see his Testarossa as it was in the shop.

This man – this Ferrari enthusiast – was one of the top brain surgeons in the country. He was a specialist. You didn’t go see him if you had a bad case of poison ivy. You didn’t go see him for the flu or a muscle tear. You saw him if you had a problem with your brain.

[Free Webinar] How to Simplify and Expand Your Business with ClientLook

I’ve written about this before, but I get asked about my recommendation on CRMs more than anything.

And rightfully so. A great Customer Relationship Management application is a crucial part of the technology backbone of any business – especially commercial real estate.

I’m really excited to announce my first webinar with ClientLook this Wednesday, August 19 at 3pm Eastern.

Claim My Seat for the Webinar!

You want to be on this webinar if:

  • You are frustrated with complex CRMs that suck your time instead of save your time.
  • You want all your data with you at all times so you can maximize your productivity on the move.
  • Or in other words…never feel chained to your desk again!
  • You waste too much time with data entry – ClientLook has a brilliant solution for this.
  • You spend too much time reporting deal activity to your clients and owners.
  • You want a CRM that will not only help you find and track, but will actually help you win business.
  • …and so much more!

John Dawson, VP of Sales for ClientLook, is going to join me on the webinar to give a product demonstration. If you have ever wondered what ClientLook looks like behind the curtain, or what it can do, this is your opportunity.

I’ve also negotiated a special deal with ClientLook that you can only take advantage of on the webinar.

So I hope you’ll join me on Wednesday at 3pm Eastern. You will be glad you did as ClientLook is everything you need in a CRM, and nothing you don’t.

Claim My Seat for the Webinar!

The 6 Mindsets Holding You Back

And the Truths that Will Set You Free

I have poison ivy. Both arms. My stomach. And my ear. I kid you not. I have poison ivy on my ear lobe.

The reason? I love my wife.

look upinto the stars.

Earlier this week, she asked me if I would help her trim the landscaping in our back yard. Evidently – there is poison ivy back there.

When I do yard work, I binge-listen to podcasts. This week, I was listening to Michael Hyatt’s podcast – What if the Barrier’s Were Only in Your Head? It got me thinking about the things we believe in our minds.

Some of those beliefs are rooted in truth. Some are not. What we believe is true about ourselves has a tremendous impact on our performance. Our mindsets are rooted in truth, or they are rooted in a lie.

[Free Webinar] How Your Marketing Can Win You Listings

Commercial real estate is changing. The internet has helped in leveling the playing field. Best practices are now easily shared – within companies and without. It is now harder than ever to differentiate yourself from your competition.

This month’s webinar with my friend Kris Krisco of Buildout.com is all about how your marketing should actually win you listings. You can register for the webinar – at 3pm Eastern on August 5th – by clicking here.
by ShadeON via iStock.com

by ShadeON via iStock.com

The marketing of your listings is for the purpose of finding the most potential buyers. The more buyers equates to more offers. More offers, if the listing is priced right, can generate a quasi-auction environment. So not only do you find a buyer, but the best buyer – and, get the most out of that buyer.

But you can also use your marketing to win listings.

5 Reasons Why There Is No Magic Prospecting Script

I’ve recently had a number of my New to the Business (N2B) coaching clients ask me for prospecting scripts. They are new clients, and they are new to commercial real estate (CRE). Had they been with me for a while, they would have known not to ask. I want to share with you why in this post.

But first, a story…

Image of young upset female in quarrel with her husband

Image from shironosov via iStockPhoto.com

I’m in my 15th year of marriage. I love my wife more today than I ever have. She is incredible, and I count myself one of the most blessed men on the planet.

But…we still deal with conflict. She is not married to a perfect man. And despite her awesomeness, she isn’t perfect either.

Recently, we were dealing with some conflict in our marriage that had gone on for a number of days. My wife was frustrated with me. I was frustrated with the situation. Life in the Barron household was not smooth or enjoyable…at all.

The 7 Proven Steps to Finding and Winning More Business

Do you remember the scene in Good Will Hunting where Robin Williams and Matt Damon are discussing the painting? Williams has this great line. “You know the real b**** of it? It’s paint by numbas [hear Boston accent].”

I’ve got some great cheat sheets for you. The first one is on prospecting, and you can get it at the bottom of this post. Can’t wait? Click here.

There is a real wisdom in the idea of paint by numbers.

What you need to know about finding and winning the business you want.

What you need to know about finding and winning the business you want.

In bootcamp, they taught us everything “by the numbers.” I’m not exaggerating. They taught us how to get dressed like a Marine – by the numbers. They taught us how to eat like a Marine – by the numbers.

The Marine Corps is fanatical about systemizing everything based on best-practices. They debrief after every exercise. What went well? What didn’t go well? What could be improved? The result of this disciplined approach to learning from everything is they have a specific way of doing everything. And it works.

The One Marketing Tool You Need to Drive Your CRE Business – Free Webinar

I remember the first time I saw a real property package. You know the ones I’m talking about. They are beautiful. Maps. Demographics. Graphs. Comps. All branded beautifully and consistently. I was blown away.

I had been in the business for about a year before I saw one. Our firm was small town CRE. Not only did we have relationships, but we had them going back generations. Business walked in our door. We didn’t have to compete or present (not much, at least).

Businessman having stress in the office

But then I got called into my first dog and pony show. I was one of three brokers who would present to win the business. I knew the other brokers would walk in with these beautiful proposals.

I spent days trying to create the package that would stack up. It was futility. I was beyond frustrated.