When I first started my real estate brokerage back in 2000, I struggled for the first three years. We weren’t selling very many homes and I was in desperate need for money every month. The majority of my commission income was used to pay the overhead of the business: rent, utilities, phones, copier, supplies and insurance.
The main problem, which is plainly obviously, was that we weren’t selling enough homes. And by digging just a little bit further, we can easily see that we didn’t have enough clients. Because we didn’t have enough clients, we weren’t generating enough leads.
This is true for all of us in real estate. If we’re not selling many homes, it’s usually because we’re not generating enough leads.
The real issue is that it’s very expensive to generate new leads. I know all the rah-rah stuff, that.. “marketing is an investment,” but if you don’t have enough money to advertise, it’s an expense. A rather large expense.
And because generating leads is expensive, we don’t do it. We pay our other bills and hold off on running advertisements. This situation creates a circle of failure.
No marketing –> No leads –> No clients –> No sales
It finally dawned on me that I had to break this circle of failure, if I wanted to achieve my business goals. This meant that I HAD to advertise. I HAD to generate new leads on a consistent basis.
So I decided to create a new income stream in my business that I could use to run more lead generation advertisements. The income stream I created was a monthly membership. The membership price was $29.95 and members received an awesome newsletter and several other benefits.
The income from this membership created an advertising fund I could use to run more advertisements. These additional advertisements generated more leads, more clients and more home sales.
The new income stream created a circle of success because it provided the income I needed to buy more clients.
The reality is that the members in my new membership paid for my advertising. The members allowed me to buy new clients. I engineered a situation where someone else paid for my advertisements.
I focused on creating a great membership. I wrote each newsletter personally. I wrote all of the marketing to sell the membership to members. I worked hard to create a new income stream to buy more clients.
When I sold my real estate brokerage in 2007, I had 400 members in this membership. This meant that I had a recurring monthly advertising budget of $11,980.
Think about that for a minute…
How many clients would you be able to buy if you had an extra $143,760 a year to spend on lead generation advertisements? A LOT.
Would any other agent in your market be able to compete with you? NO.
This new income stream made my business a lot more profitable because the none of the commission income from our sales had to be allocated to advertising. This is not the case for the traditional agent who is forced to allocate a significant amount of their commission income to advertising.
Now, before you run off and create a membership, understand that you DON’T necessarily need a membership to create a circle of success in your business. What you DO need is a new income stream that you can use to pay for more lead generation advertisements.
You can accomplish this same goal by creating one, or more, upsells to offer to new leads you generate. The income from these upsells can be used to offset your advertising expense.
As you can see, you’re just one or two upsells away from being able to buy more clients. This also means you’re one or two upsells away from doubling or tripling your home sales.
Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to create upsells for your target prospect. Here are the four basic upsells you can use:
1. A book (or books)
2. A “how to course”
3. A service
4. A membership
My niche is, and always has been, real estate investors. This is very strategic, because it allows me to easily create multiple targeted upsells for investors.
- I have written several books on real estate investing.
- I have several courses on real estate investing.
- I can offer new services for investors, or I can earn referral fees by recommending other services to my clients. I have a home-hunter service. You can offer tenant placement services. You can offer property management services, or refer to clients to property management companies.
- I have a new Cashflownaire membership for investors and entrepreneurs where I share what I’m personally doing with my investments and businesses..One more important idea you should understand about the this circle of success strategy….
You may not be able to completely offset the cost of your advertisements with just one upsell. You may need several upsells to completely cover your entire advertising expense. The good news is you can layer upsells on top of each other.
Keep messing with your upsells until you can offset all of your advertising expenses.
Oh and before long your new problem will be… you’ll need more agents on your team to work with all of the clients you buy!