“If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant;
If we did not sometimes taste of adversity, prosperity would not be so welcome.” –Anne Bradstreet
The year is off to a great start and by all accounts, activity is showing great signs of upward movement across the country. We’re hearing reports of multiple offers, properties going into contract in mere weeks, and buyers finally coming out of their long hibernation.
Many parts of the country did not experience the typical cold, snowy winter they have in recent years. Some may blame it on global warming or it just might be a forecast that things are heating up in 2012. As the winter fades away and the second quarter arrives, here are some things that Realtors can learn from spring.
1. Spring training
Every year, beginning in February, the best baseball players in the world begin arriving in Arizona and Florida to get ready for another season. And what is they are reporting for?
That’s right. The best players in the world show up each year to go back to the basics. They’ll spend six to eight weeks practicing, throwing, catching, hitting, fielding, running and all of the other things that most people assume they should all know how to do.
Yet, because baseball is their business, they all need to be at their best because … well, their job depends on it.
They will work on things hundreds of times that may happen only rarely in actual games. They practice “pickles” (also known as “rundowns,” when a base runner is caught between two bases) and the “suicide squeeze” bunt play, which is intended to get a runner from third base to home plate.
They will turn double plays until their hip muscles hurt, and field enough ground balls that they will need ice and Motrin to ease their aching backs.
They do it in the spring so when the teams start playing “for real” in late March and early April, they don’t need to think about what they’re doing in a game situation. They instinctively react and make the play.
They also connect with their fan base — some of them new but many of them lifelong followers — during spring training. They sign autographs; they talk to the fans over the railings and from the bullpens in these smaller, more intimate stadiums; and they often meet face-to-face with people away from the ballpark because they may be staying in the same hotel or resort.
What can Realtors learn … ?
When things get challenging, how often do we say, “It’s time to get back to the basics”? If the basics work so well, why must we always get back to them? We should just keep doing the things that help us become successful. Baseball players are good at hitting, fielding, throwing, catching and running. What are the basics you need to be successful in real estate?
Some of the top players in baseball throughout history have been referred to as “five-tool players.” These players excelled in:
- Running for speed.
- Arm strength.
- Hitting for average.
- Hitting for power.
True “five-tool players” are few and far between. A player like the great Willie Mays is considered one of the best all-around players ever, and modern-day stars like Alex Rodriguez and Albert Pujols are also what many would consider a “five-tool player.” Because they help their team in more ways than other players, they demand and receive higher salaries.
Could you be a “five-tool agent”? What if you excelled in the following five areas of real estate and could demand the highest fees from your clients because you help them succeed in their real estate needs?
- Prospecting. Do you have an array of systems, methods and processes to focus on business-development activities that will help you secure appointments with people who have a real estate need or might know someone who does?
- Personal marketing. Do you leverage all the available methods to create and maintain a consistent “connection” with your network? This includes social media, direct mail, local “top of mind awareness,” and a mix of personal and brand recognition. When people see one of your company’s yard signs, do they think of you?
- Property marketing. You promised your sellers maximum exposure of their property in order to secure the “best buyer.” How do you feel about your ability to capture the most eyeballs regardless of price range, location or condition?
- Transaction service. It really boils down to this: Do you under-promise and over-deliver? From start to finish, are you providing truly remarkable service to each and every client you work with?
- Client follow-up. It costs more to build a new relationship than it does to maintain an old one. Are you satisfied with your systems that you have in place to insure that people who have done business with you in the past will be able to consider you “their Realtor” on their next transaction or for that next referral?
This article has some great tips for making the most of this season as an agent! See the full post here: http://next.inman.com/2012/03/9-things-realtors-can-learn-from-spring-part-i/