Marketing Genius or Predatory Behavior?

By
Real Estate Agent with www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 228209

Marketing Genius or Predatory Behavior?

Home TicketI received a call from a homeowner in one of the neighborhoods that I do a lot of business in. The kind lady and her husband were being transferred out of state and they wanted to see if I could come meet with them that week to discuss getting their home ready to sell. I had been referred to them by someone in their neighborhood.

 

Of course, I pulled fresh data and met with them to review their steps to prepare and our steps together, to get their home marketed and sold so they could begin the next chapter in their destination city & state. I referred them to an AR member who is also a CRS in the destination city and we began discussions about fees, etc. I answered all of their questions and felt confident, I was going to be their agent. 

Level of being surprised
Before the ink was dried on the listing agreement that I had returned to the office to tweak specifically for them, I received a call, asking if I would cut my commission. Let me just say that the amount of commission they wanted me to agree to, was not going to be worth my time to list, pay a professional measuring crew, photographer, videographer, my full-time marketing guy who would plaster their home EVERYWHERE...

 

You know, the list goes on and on...

 

 

When I was given the opportunity to 'think about it,' I promptly rejected the offer, "I'm so very sorry but, my commission is exactly what we discussed earlier. I do not discount my services. You see, your home is NOT a 'discount' home and you really should think twice before you go the discount route to sell your beautiful home."

 

Are you discounting your home?

 

"Well, can you come back tomorrow evening and talk to us again?" Of course - again, I had a strong feeling that I positively was their listing agent; they just had to come to terms with that too! 

 

Stalking YOU!The next evening, I arrived with my listing documents in-hand, sat down and laid my pens out on the table for them to use. I asked them if I had demonstrated my value to them at our last meeting or did the feel we needed to review the marketing plan again. "Oh, no! We're signing! We don't WANT anyone to think our house is a 'discouned' home - IT'S NOT!"

Furthermore, they went on to explain that they had posted their need for a listing agent on NextDoor - the neighborhood app. Mind you, it's a NEIGHBORHOOD App with 3-5 neighborhoods in one 'group' but, if you think you're the only agent in town, listen to this...

 

After posting their request for a recommendation for a real estate agent, they had no fewer than 70 calls, private messages, packets delivered to their doorstep, WINE delivered to their doorstep...and it didn't stop! They were HORRIFIED and their word to describe the experience, "Creepy."

Desperately seeking listings
She went on to explain, "These agents should be ashamed of themselves! They PREY on the consumer - their behavior is nothing short of stalkish and I sensed desperation in many of their messages. I would NEVER hire one of those agents." 

 

WOW! Was I ever taken aback - and ever-so thankful that I hadn't been the one to reach out to THEM! Holy guacamole - what the consumer must think of us - VULTURES it seems.

 

The seller went on to explain that her husband traveled extensively and that she was home alone a LOT. The agents who took it upon themselves to show up on her doorstep when she would pull into her garage to 'gift' her something, were just downright 'creepy' to them. She felt that she needed to start arming her alarm on her home again; she didn't dare go out her front door because she felt there was always someone parked in front of her home, waiting to sell her on them. 

 

DO NOT RESPOND TO BRIBES!

*What are your chances of getting the wine right with a stranger? Furthermore, do they even DRINK wine? 

 


In the end, I landed the job - sold their home in a day with multiple Offers and they very happily and quite graciously, paid me my full commission that I had originally stated to them that I charge. They had no problem doing it and even went on to explain that they will forever keep the video I provided them of their home, knowing it will bring back fond memories they created in that home. It was a wonderful transaction from beginning to end - and rest assured, I did NOT give them wine as a Closing gift! 

 


 

 

So, what say you? Marketing Genius or Predatory Behavior?

 

I feel like I got my answer straight from the horse's mouth! Of course, I'm open to discussion but, not sure our peers aren't pushing the envelope just a wee much with this style of marketing (if you even want to call it that).

 

© Debe Maxwell | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | CharlotteBroker@icloud.com | Marketing Genius or Predatory Behavior?

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Re-Blogged 1 time:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Roy Kelley 08/09/2019 01:00 AM
Topic:
Real Estate Best Practices
Location:
North Carolina Mecklenburg County Charlotte Southpark
Groups:
North Carolina Real Estate
Bananatude
Bartender, Make it a Double
Hyper-Local
Old Farts Club
Tags:
how to win a listing
how not to procure business
listing agents in the southpark area charlotte nc

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Ambassador
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Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

Feel free to borrow that statement all you want, Rose O'Reilly.HomeSmart Realty.

Aug 07, 2019 10:38 PM #48
Ambassador
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Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

Who know that many agents were even on that site in one single area, Lyn Sims?! I'm so glad that I don't rely on that site for business! LOL

Aug 07, 2019 10:39 PM #49
Rainer
475,289
Kimo Jarrett
WikiWiki Realty - Huntington Beach, CA
Pro Lifestyle Solutions

There are many agents whose value is considerably less than a knowledgeable, experienced, confident and skillful agent that is satisfied to work for less. However, there are exceptions where earning less is appropriate but not often.

Regardless, consumers understand that there's a difference besides the price of goods or services that indicates superior value. The agents brand is their birthmark and should always IMO distinguish themselves from the competition. Great post.

Aug 08, 2019 01:05 AM #50
Rainmaker
3,796,010
Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR
Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate

Good morning Debe Maxwell, CRS ,

Isn't it a shame so many agents hungry for business harass the public for business. I'm glad you stuck to your guns about your commission. I just lost a listing because I wouldn't discount my commission and that is okay.. What is sad is they need all the help they can get.

Aug 08, 2019 03:57 AM #51
Rainmaker
5,343,176
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

Good Thursday morning, Debe. Have a great day and an outstanding week.

Aug 08, 2019 05:00 AM #52
Rainmaker
372,781
M.C. Dwyer
Century 21 Showcase REALTORs - Felton, CA
Santa Cruz Mountains Property Specialist

Yes I agree that showing up to someone's house unannounced and uninvited is both creepy and predatory.    70 agents!    Yuck!     

I'm glad you got to keep your listing.    The sellers deserve the best - you!

Aug 08, 2019 08:22 AM #53
Rainmaker
401,223
John Wiley
Right Move Real Estate Group- EXP Realty - Fort Myers, FL
Lee County, FL, ECO Broker, GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA

The creepers, pouncers, pests are not helping the professional image of a REALTOR.

I doubt that they would add the Ethics Pledge to their marketing materials.

Aug 08, 2019 04:47 PM #54
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Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Debe- I see some of that on our Nextdoor as well and I wonder what the potential seller thinks of all of it. 

Aug 08, 2019 07:09 PM #55
Rainmaker
3,236,068
Sally K. & David L. Hanson
EXP Realty 414-525-0563 - Brookfield, WI
WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce

Have not ever had a request for discounting commission...only "what is your commission?" ....we explain it and what we bring to the transaction...their choice if they believe it is of value...they know what we do...they cannot.

Aug 09, 2019 03:38 AM #56
Rainmaker
1,765,157
Lottie Kendall
Compass - San Francisco, CA
Helping make your real estate dreams a reality

I know the point of your story, Debe, is the behavior of some agents who give our profession a bad name. My reaction is similar to that of the homeowner.

Your response to her commission cutting inquiry was brilliant, "You see, your home is NOT a 'discount' home and you really should think twice before you go the discount route to sell your beautiful home."

Aug 09, 2019 06:21 AM #57
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Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

I'm thankful that they understood the difference and did not hesitate to put their full trust in me at that second visit. It was definitely successful for them - great results. 

And, I totally agree with you, Kimo Jarrett - "However, there are exceptions where earning less is appropriate but not often." My largest investment (my home) would not be something that I would go discount on! LOL

Aug 09, 2019 07:41 AM #58
Ambassador
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Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR, I'm sorry that you did but, you never know when they will come back when that happens. I can tell you that recently happened to me too - they began the process with the other agent and then fired her. She was super slow to respond and her marketing just didn't compare. They were sick they lost time but, in the end, they were wildly successful with their sale. 

Aug 09, 2019 07:43 AM #59
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Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

And, thank you again, Roy, for the re-blog! I hope you have an outstanding day & week as well!

Roy Kelley 

Aug 09, 2019 09:48 AM #60
Ambassador
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Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

I couldn't believe them when they told me how many, M.C. Dwyer! Now that I know them better, I am 100% confident that is a factual number! CRAZY in my opinion and I will say that desperation isn't 'pretty' and really doesn't do a thing for our profession.

Aug 09, 2019 09:51 AM #61
Ambassador
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Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

Oh, John Wiley, I am so with you on that! I found myself apologizing for them and then telling the sellers that is not how I or anyone from my company operates!

Aug 09, 2019 09:52 AM #62
Ambassador
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Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

Kathy Streib, it's like the agents who sell their souls for their brokerages and annoy every agent within 1,000 miles of them to join their company. It doesn't do a thing to help the perception of them or their company in that case and our entire profession in the Nextdoor case.

Thankfully, we found out what that seller thought of it - and I'm very thankful for that!

Have a great weekend, Kathy!

Aug 09, 2019 09:54 AM #63
Ambassador
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Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

We're a very transient city with a lot of different cultures represented here. It would not be 'customary' for many of them to accept what is put before them as the cost of doing business. Therefore, they MUST 'barter' - or at the very least, ask!

We get this all of the time and are very used to it. In fact, we get it even before they will agree to a listing meeting, Sally K. & David L. Hanson!  

Aug 09, 2019 09:58 AM #64
Ambassador
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Debe Maxwell, CRS
www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

It's so true, Lottie! There are discounted homes and then there are those that aren't! LOL

Lottie Kendall 

Aug 09, 2019 10:00 AM #65
Rainer
93,294
Patrick Willard
Rio Rancho, NM

The thing is it works on some people. 20 some odd yrs ago I had been calling an expired lsiting for several days trying to get an appointment. I finally got in, talked to her and she'd agreed to list with me. We set an appointment for the next day to sign the agrement. Later that afternoon she called to cancel. She'd listed with another agent. I asked her why and she became very upset and said the agent just showed up with a filled out listing agreement, complete with price, and told her to sign and she said she did.

I told a friend in my office. He also worked expireds and told me he'd heard from other sellers about this agent. Apparently his MO was to pull expires, fill out a listing agreement with a new lower price, and then he just show up, ring the bell and pushe his way in telling the sellers their last agent didn't know what they were doing, had priced their house wrong, and if they wanted to sell they better sign with him because he'd get it sold. 

He was pretty successful. I'm sure many sellers kicked him out, but enough signed to make him one of the best expired listers in our market. I personaly could never feel comfortable doing business that way, but for some it does work.

Aug 12, 2019 09:28 AM #66
Rainmaker
184,218
Melanie Cameron
Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage - Wilmington, NC
The Cameron Team

Oh my! Agents really must consider their strategies from the perspective of the homeowner. Attraction marketing is more effective in the long run than this vulture-like style. It happens in local Facebook communities too. The poster mentions they may be moving and they suddenly have 80 agents responding and a few stalking them via the tax records. It's disturbing.

Aug 13, 2019 08:37 AM #67
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