I remember the excitement of getting my real estate license. I knew there was a world of opportunity before me, if I could just figure out the secret sauce to make my phone ring. Instead, I was advised to cold call, a disheartening experience that nearly forced me out of the business.

Starting out as a brand new Realtor in 2003, I was already feeling the squeeze on my bank account. Between the MLS dues, new wardrobe, cell phone and laptop I was nearly tapped out! It was as if all the things I was told I needed for success were steering me towards failure.

So why the low success rate? After 13 years in the business, I've identified 6 reasons (and fixed them).

  • Lack of mentoring - When you are working on commission, you'd better know what you are doing... and fast. Newer agent's typically start out being "sold" on joining a brokerage with "coaching" that comes with an upfront expense (further squeezing your wallet). Unfortunately, coaching is DIY, while mentoring is hands on help with an active Realtor supporting you in your daily activities and sales. Shouldn't your Broker have some skin in the game?
  • Lack of leads and client's - Most big box brokerages offer a robust suite of tools that seem to offer success (I know because I've worked for many of them). Agent websites, personally branded "apps" and Newsletter templates. If you're lucky, you'll get "floor time" or "up-desk". Why don't they provide newer Realtors hot leads to give them the best chance of success? Because they actually have no idea how to generate leads, but we do (think about how you found this blog post). 
  • Antiquated marketing techniques - Sadly most new Realtors are still being taught marketing techniques that were used before the internet existed (push marketing). Door knocking, open houses, recipe cards and holiday newsletters are a great way to meet people... but we're in the business of sales. The activities that newer Realtors must focus on are those that generate motivated leads that want to talk now about buying or selling real estate (pull marketing).
  • Ad spend on Trulia, Zillow etc - Have you ever felt that by advertising on these sites, you might be fishing in the same pond as everyone else? I'm here to break it to you, you are, but no one advised you otherwise. These websites provide what can be referred to as "demand fulfillment", you need to be spending your ad dollars on "demand generation". Imagine having the fishing hole all to yourself.
  • Follow up failure - Realtors love to discuss CRM's (contact relationship management). Most systems are too confusing, too complex and do little to actually "follow up " for you. The truth is, most of the real estate CRM's will take more time to learn then they save you. Only the very best actually automate the initial follow-up (text message & email). But we've got that figured out.
  • Start-up cost - Very few newer Realtors are well funded enough to access the most powerful marketing, advertising, consulting and web design firms. Most big box brokerages provide a "one size fits all" approach as a solution. In an effort to defer the recruit's start-up cost, they compromise the quality of what they provide which only creates a handicap. We believe our team deserves the best, and that's EXACTLY what we give them.

Success in real estate is never guaranteed. But after 13 years in the business, I've learned a thing or two about supporting newer Realtors and what it takes to be successful. The only question left is, do you want to make the same mistakes as the others that came before you or work with a team that gets it?