The simplest path to a 6-figure year

By Jake Dixon

Odds are you got into real estate for freedom, flexibility and financial gain. And yet, if you are like most new agents, you have quickly realized this is a challenging business.

Roughly 87% of new licensees end up not renewing their license within the first two years. Combine that with the fact that more than 90% of agents sell 24 or fewer homes per year. Yet when asked, the majority claim they want to earn six figures per year.

So, what gives? Why is it so out of balance? What do the “successful” agents do to create a sustainable business compared to those who become a negative statistic?

Rookie agents often make things more complicated than they need to — then hide behind that manufactured complexity to justify failure. Agents end up finding evidence to support their beliefs, saying things like, “See, I told you so: This is hard.”

Other agents end up living in scarcity, thinking there is not enough opportunity available to achieve their own goals. They play the blame game, pointing the finger everywhere but themselves, eventually saying, “I’m going to go get a real job.” But they’re turning their back on an amazing opportunity.

Success is not easy, but it’s also not complicated. To build a sustainable, profitable, consistent business, you must get granular: Chunk things down into manageable pieces. It takes 90 days to create or lose momentum in business, so what we do today may show up three months later. A farmer doesn’t plant his crops and expect to see the fruits of his efforts tomorrow. It takes time. Cultivate the ground, plant the seeds, water them and then allow time to produce the fruits.

Similarly, for most agents, the question is not, “What are the 101 things I need to do?” Rather, the question becomes, “What are the simple things I need to do repeatedly to produce the fruits I am seeking?”

Success always happens by the slight edge. Errors in judgement, repeated over time, compound into failure and disappointment. But disciplines, repeated over time, can compound into massive results. Success can be boring, tedious and even mundane. Sometimes, though, we must accept that boredom is associated with success.

Consider this: Would you rather have $1 million cash upfront or a penny that doubles every day for a month? We know the temptation is to take the $1 million cash, but with time, patience and consistency, the penny will yield $5.3 million.

So, where am I going with all of this? Let’s do some math together.

After working with thousands of new agents over the years, I see a consistent conversion rate of 2% from contacts made to business opportunities. In other words, every 50 real estate conversations ultimately yield one new piece of business. Knowing this to be consistently true over time, there is a formula to building a sustainable, predictable real estate business that earns six figures per year.

What if you simply spoke to five people per day about real estate and you worked five days per week for 50 weeks out of the year? Five contacts x five days per week = 25 contacts per week. The compound effect totals 1,250 real estate conversations over the course of the year. If we take those 1,250 real estate conversations apply the 50:1 ratio, that gives you 25 sales. Simply put, five conversations per day for five days a week over 50 weeks of the year can yield you 25 sales: a six-figure income in real estate.

This is the true meaning of consistency. It’s having faith over fear, trusting that you are showing up every day doing the work. Although these results are not guaranteed for everyone, how many agents are really repeating this activity over time? As the statistics prove, not many.

In closing, what is easy to do is also easy not to do. This is deceptively simple. Many agents overcomplicate things because they are convinced it could not be this simple.

So, get out there! Have five conversations per day, five days a week, for a year — and report back to me in 12 months. Your future self is thanking you.

Jake Dixon is founder and CEO of The Locker Room Real Estate Coaching and Training.

Build relationships and bring value with every outreach

By Maria Malin

When we look back at the experience of living through the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ll have learned many valuable lessons from it, including how life and relationships were reprioritized and strengthened. Though physically and socially distanced, we forged new and creative pathways to check in, keep in touch, share our lives and, yes, do business. Technology will be remembered as the conduit for our connectivity, teaching us that virtual, though not reality, worked as not only an effective, but sometimes more efficient, use of our time. As we now emerge from the constraints of the pandemic, will we continue to simply click to connect our relationships? More specifically, will the return of our ability to be “in person” give technology a new place in how we reach out and stay top of mind?

From a coaching perspective, I encourage you to envision how you’d build your business if you couldn’t text or post or like or comment or stream or otherwise digitally find your way into someone’s life. What if your business wasn’t referral-based? What if you were building a business for the first time or in a completely new market or had no established sphere of influence? What would outreach look like? What would stand out? What would make you stand out? Would it be tech-savvy or grassroots?
The first, last and only thing that counts — in my personal and professional opinion, and no matter how you deliver it — is value. True and genuine value. Value to the relationship and valuable real estate — in that order.

Whether you deliver that value via digital routes or grassroots is secondary. Bringing value to those you know and those you want to know better can and should be an everyday thing. Building relationships and making others feel important doesn’t take genius, but it does take consistent effort and authenticity.

Think about the unique aspects of the relationships you want to touch, and deliver custom, relevant, personal outreach at every opportunity. Be present; be a go-to; be who you genuinely are, not some curated persona on social or a once-a-year check-in or someone only seeking out their next referral.

Remember, the world today is not only digging out of a year-plus of pandemic-weary living; it has reprioritized what’s important and has a keener sense of what’s untrue. Be other-centric in how you deepen, enrich, share and stay top of mind to the relationships in your life, and via direct or digital outreach, you’ll bring value.

Delivering valuable real estate is more straightforward. If you’re newer to real estate, build credibility by sharing quantified, data-focused market knowledge at every opportunity. If you’ve been in the business for a while, yes, you’re busy and the market’s been like no other. Still, always be other-centric in sharing what’s valuable to those asking you about the market and relying on your expertise. Simply stating that your business has been busier than ever may be perceived as “too busy.” Keep answers specific to those asking you the questions, and create value with what and how you share.

A few simple questions will help you stay in tune to whether or not your outreach is effective. Do you get response or engagement, or never hear back? Remember, half of a relationship is not a relationship. Is your sphere of influence organized? Do you then customize your outreach based on that? Make sure you’re sending what is top of mind and relevant to your recipients, and go beyond the usual, like geographic farming.

Again, always be authentic. Curating a brand or image that’s not true to who you are is not only ineffective, it’s extremely difficult to sustain or find long-term success with. Think genuine rather than simply strategic, and you’ll win in life and real estate.
Indeed, hearing a voice or seeing a face will never become obsolete. And of course, we’ll continue to deliver valuable outreach at scale via technology. Enhance and enrich your relationships at every opportunity, and strengthen your credibility by sharing your specific real estate knowledge and experience with those you know and those they know. Spend your time wisely and consistently on all fronts, and you’ll create a template for long-term, sustainable growth in any market.

Since 2011, Maria Malin has worked exclusively in real estate coaching and training for @properties and Compass in Chicago, writing, developing and teaching content to assist Illinois real estate brokers with building and growing their business. Brokers who regularly coached with her in 2020 grew their business an average of 76%. Maria recently launched her own real estate coaching business, works with all brokerages and can be found at mariamalincoaching.com.