Innovation Comes from Trial & Error

By
Real Estate Agent with www.AtHomesCharlotte.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 228209
http://activerain.com/droplet/59Nl

Innovation Comes from Trial & Error

Try and fail but, don't fail from not trying!

 

 

In our business, we hear, not just daily but, multiple times daily, marketing ideas that are sure to rock our world. We listen and most of the time, will give a new idea a try if all of the stars align - if the person referring the product is trustworthy in our eyes, if the marketing budget allows and if time allows for us to give the idea our full attention. 

 

The key to a successful trial includes all of the above however, MUST also include evaulation and tweaking...continuing or discontinuing.

 


 

 

TRIAL LOSER

Oh, I can think of many postcards that I sent out that procured not one future client but, my most expensive bust was not so much the idea itself but, the way I managed it. I learned of a system that managed a home search site for me and promised to procure at least 60 leads per month. That doesn't sound like much but, if you convert your leads well, other agents who I know well, were turning a significantly higher number of leads than anyone in the country was documenting. Okay, I'll give it a whirl!

Way to ignore leads


I started out quite well but, with our typical, crazy spring market and my normal referral business, I suddenly had not time to respond to the leads. Eventually, I responded to NONE of them! I simply didn't have time or the staff to do so and my referral clients keep me quite busy, typically 12 months a year

. Why I thought I could manage these additional leads is beyond me!

 

Eventually, I hired someone to work the leads for me and I referred out a good book of business, making more than enough with the 'mailbox money' to pay for the leads and my new assistant's salary for working them. In the meantime, my other websites began pulling in more leads than I knew what to do with so, I focused on those - after all, the amount of time I had spent over the years to boost my own SEO was more valuable than the cost of the leads I was getting from an independent service. I no longer buy leads and enjoy a heavy referral business...and mailbox money from my website leads.

 

*As you can see in the screenshot, a sample of unanswered emails from 2014 - and that's only one day from the people I was paying to be sure my IDX was getting leads!

 


 

 

WINNING TRIAL

I had several of my close friends who are agents telling me to become more social - actually spend time outside of the real estate transaction with them. Most of them were doing some sort of weekly or monthly meet-and-greet event but, I honestly didn't think I would have the time to implement such a large undertaking, time-consuming event each month...muchless each week. So, I started quarterly and then moved to monthly meet-ups - they were a raving success and how fun for my team and me too! 

 

Sample invitation for Shelter Soiree

 

I have since focused on my favorite charities and have tailored the events around volunteering and including my sphere, past & current clients. I send out personal invitations and always receive a tremendous response. I have to say that tweaking to focus on this way to interact with my clients, whether or not I receive one referral, does more for my heart than the monthly 'bar meet-ups!' I love seeing others giving of their hearts to causes in which we share a passion.

 


 

 

FUTURE TRIAL

I've been using Facebook for quite some time but, have enlisted my millennial assistants to help me with evaluating efforts on my FB business page. I have been enjoying Anita Clark's Facebook Fridays each week and taken many notes, trying to achieve a new goal each week.

 

Facebook Focus

 

This year, I hope to have a better handle on what works and what doesn't and utilize my calendar to add timely posts to FB - posts my readers need and/or want to read, when they want them. When they sit there, sight unseen or with few readers, this is indicative of one of two things - timeliness or material. I like to think that my material is important but, we need to evaluate the topics that are most-read and when they are read, resulting in calls or comments. 

  


 

 

Regardless of the marketing that we do, evaluation is truly key - are we wasting our time, our valuable resources or our money? Or, are we hitting home runs? I'm also a big believer in continuing to do what is working...and for me, personalized business relationships, face-to-face, belly-button-to-belly-button business has never let me down and I will continue to focus on that aspect of my business. Sometimes, the old-fashioned methods of doing business are still impactful; for me, it's the most impactful thing that I do for my business.

 

What works for you?

 


 

This post is an entry in Jeff Dowler's challenge for this month. If you haven't participated, share what works for you and what doesn't. Chime in - let your voice be heard!

 

© Debe Maxwell | The Maxwell House Group | CharlotteBroker@icloud.com | Innovation Comes from Trial & Error

 

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Rainmaker
277,225
Lynnea Miller
Bend Premier Real Estate - Bend, OR
Premier Real Estate Service in Central Oregon

Debe- You have truly found what works for you. I need to implement more of the social aspect - and have plans for that this year. Congratulations on your continued success!

Feb 11, 2018 09:44 PM #16
Rainmaker
2,406,331
James Dray
Fathom Realty AR LLC - Bentonville, AR
Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results

Morning Debe.

Finding that niche is something a lot of agents never find.  

Feb 12, 2018 01:58 AM #17
Rainmaker
4,549,297
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD
Roy and Dolores Kelley Photographs

Thank you very much, Debe, for sharing some of your marketing experience.

Feb 12, 2018 04:11 AM #18
Rainmaker
2,963,686
Sheila Anderson
Referral Group Incorporated - East Brunswick, NJ
The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133

Good morning Debe. I think you know who you are and have identified what matters to you. Great post.

Feb 12, 2018 05:52 AM #19
Rainmaker
653,146
Nick & Trudy Vandekar, 610-203-4543
Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400 - Devon, PA
Tredyffrin Easttown Realtors, Philly Main Line

I like using a meet up with clients as an opportunity to raise funds for a favorite charity at the same time. I have been thinking about this for a long time so may take this as a format to use. Thank you.

Feb 12, 2018 09:04 AM #20
Rainmaker
2,131,863
Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

I like the way you partnered with your local humane society the way you did.  You accomplished two things with this method.  (1) You assisted our fur neighbors, and (2) Created a great marketing opportunity.

Feb 12, 2018 10:24 AM #21
Rainmaker
2,131,863
Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

CONGRATULATIONS Debe, on having this blog FEATURED in the Old Farts Club group!    

Feb 12, 2018 10:24 AM #22
Ambassador
2,478,168
Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.AtHomesCharlotte.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

Hi Lynnea Miller! I remember at my old brokerage, my partner didn't want anything to do with it. I begged and pleaded to have ONE customer appreciation event and it turned out to be huge! The agents invited their sphere and we had a spread like I'd only seen at a large church function! The agents all had success from it and I know several of them have done quite well since by implementing that into their business. 

The thing is, it's SO darned easy to do and it's heartfelt...and the clients know that you're their agent for life....and they sense you care too! It's a win-win.

Good luck!

Feb 12, 2018 10:26 AM #23
Ambassador
2,478,168
Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.AtHomesCharlotte.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

That's so true, James Dray and it took me awhile for it to register too! Regardless of that, I am still tweaking, as mentioned in the post. I love where it is today but, tomorrow, something may need to be tweaked.

Feb 12, 2018 10:28 AM #24
Ambassador
2,478,168
Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.AtHomesCharlotte.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

And, thank you for stopping by, Roy Kelley!

I hope you have a wonderful week!

Feb 12, 2018 10:29 AM #25
Ambassador
2,478,168
Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.AtHomesCharlotte.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

Hi Sheila Anderson - that's a great point - being comfortable with who you are and knowing what is important to you is half the battle, isn't it?!

Feb 12, 2018 10:30 AM #26
Ambassador
2,478,168
Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.AtHomesCharlotte.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

Same here, Nick & Trudy Vandekar, 610-203-4543 - it is the giving that we're doing naturally - why not involve those who share your passion for giving and for giving to particular organizations? 

I love that you're involving your clients already with the donations from your sales - a hand-written card to that effect is a BIG start to thanking them for giving to something that is important to you. Now, when your organization has a fund-raising event or if you just want to host one yourself (which is what I do most of the time), many of your clients become loyal to your charity too. I just love that!

Feb 12, 2018 10:32 AM #27
Ambassador
2,478,168
Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.AtHomesCharlotte.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

Thank you, Myrl Jeffcoat! The invitation went out to my sphere and we did nothing with it publicly but, those who attended are, and always will be, loyal clients. I love that!

Feb 12, 2018 10:33 AM #28
Ambassador
2,478,168
Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.AtHomesCharlotte.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

And thank you for the feature, Myrl Jeffcoat! I added it to old farts group because sometimes we DO know better than some who think that we should only be intertwined with our clients via the internet and social media. That's the icing on the cake but, the old fashioned way works 10 times better!

Feb 12, 2018 10:35 AM #29
Rainmaker
2,555,871
Laura Cerrano
Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island - Locust Valley, NY
Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher

Mistakes are just rough drafts a lot of the time with things like this. It’s important to have fun when you’re trying new things to expand your horizons a little bit

Feb 12, 2018 11:43 PM #30
Rainmaker
485,659
Hella M. Rothwell, Broker/Realtor®
Carmel by the Sea, CA
Rothwell Realty Inc. CA#01968433 Carmel-by-the-Sea

Different strategies work in different marketplaces. Doing something for the community gets a lot of attention. Mine is the annual Carmel Art Festival of which I am the official organizer. Thousands of people come from all over to attend this plein air event in Carmel-by-the-Sea. The residents association is a staunch supporter as is the City of Carmel's elected officials because it reminds everyone that artists put this city on the map.

Feb 13, 2018 03:13 PM #31
Ambassador
2,478,168
Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.AtHomesCharlotte.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

We have a great time with our charities and clients - it's a win-win for everyone, Laura Cerrano.

Feb 13, 2018 05:49 PM #32
Ambassador
2,478,168
Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.AtHomesCharlotte.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

That is SUCH a cool event, Hella M. Rothwell, Broker/Realtor® and I had no idea you were the organizer - how fun is that?! I'm sure it's a lot of work but, wow, how rewarding for you, the festival and your entire city! 

Feb 13, 2018 05:50 PM #33
Rainmaker
1,365,759
Beth Atalay
Cam Realty and Property Management - Clermont, FL
Cam Realty of Clermont FL

Hi Debe Maxwell, CRS, not with PPC but I've wasted a lot of time and money on "stuff" that simply didn't work in my marketplace. Giving back is the most natural thing we can all do, when you involve your community, it's certainly a winner.

Feb 15, 2018 07:05 AM #34
Rainmaker
2,732,961
Sally K. & David L. Hanson
Keller Williams 414-525-0563 - Brookfield, WI
WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce - Short Sale

We often learn more from mistakes than victories.

Feb 16, 2018 04:58 AM #35
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