Recent dialog with mastermind member @Steven Koleno has brought to life a strategic analogy that is incredibly relevant to our industry today. It's one I taught a seminar on a few years ago during the launch of the RARE Agent mission. I'm referring to the concept of the Red Ocean vs. Blue Ocean. In the increasingly competitive real estate market, understanding this concept can be a game-changer for those looking to stand out from the crowd. Follow along... 🔴 Imagine the real estate market as an ocean. The "Red Ocean" represents the current industry landscape, filled with fierce competition, where agents are constantly battling over the same territory and clients. This ocean is 'bloody' from the aggressive competition, where sharks devour the smaller fish, and standing out becomes increasingly difficult as everyone is offering similar services and fighting over the same deals. 🔵 However, there's another ocean—the "Blue Ocean." This is a space of uncontested market where competition is irrelevant because the game's rules are waiting to be set or, more importantly, are being defined by you. It’s the creation of new demand and the opportunity for high growth. In the Blue Ocean, you're not trying to outperform the competition; instead, you're making the competition irrelevant by differentiating your services and carving a niche for yourself. Obviously, I encourage everyone to swim in the Blue Ocean. But swimming in the Blue Ocean is not that easy. In the Blue Ocean, agents strive to be more than just agents. They aim to be expert solution providers offering valuable, distinct services that set them apart. This requires innovative thinking, creativity, and a commitment to understanding our client's needs. In the Blue Ocean, it’s not about doing more of the same or better than other agents; it’s about doing it differently. It’s about breaking away from the herd and creating a unique path to success. Can you survive as an agent in the Red Ocean? Yes, you can. But you will always be compared to other agents, be forced to lower your fees to remain competitive with agents who lead with lower fees, and constantly look over your shoulder to see who is trolling you...
Consumers do not always choose the cheapest price for everything they buy. If that were true, we would all buy our clothes at Goodwill and garage sales, dine at McDonald's, and drive Chevrolet Sparks. Instead, people COMPARE QUALITY and make purchase decisions based on VALUE. If a seller tells you they want to list their home with the agent with the lowest fees, they are going against normal behavior by ignoring the value story. The value story is what you bring to the table to benefit them that nobody else offers. It's your secret sauce that no other agent can duplicate. It makes you who you are as a unique and special real estate agent. It's what makes you a Really Awesome Real Estate Agent. I know what some of you are thinking..." But Dennis, I shared my value story, and they still picked the lowest fee agent." ▶️ That's what they told you, but that is not what really happened. It happened because you failed to differentiate your services from those of other agents, and another agent offered the same "perceived" services for a lower fee. You see, if there is no difference in the product or service, and the value is the same, people will always opt for the lowest price. Why wouldn't they? ✅ But there is ALWAYS a difference. And you must exploit those differences as the foundation of your personal value story. It's the only way to justify a higher fee for your services. Here are three examples to differentiate and exploit your personal value to a potential seller: 1️⃣ "Over the last year, the homes I have listed for sale received an acceptable offer within 15 days. That's 10 days faster than all other homes sold in your neighborhood." 2️⃣ "This year, my listings have sold for an average of 98.8% of the original asking price. That's 2.5% higher than the average in your zip code. Based on the price of your home, you are thousands of dollars ahead with me even with my higher fee." 3️⃣ "My listing fee includes professional photography, drone photography and video, staging recommendations, free landscape clean-up, and whole-house cleaning (including windows!) before I put your home on the market. I want your home to look great so I can sell it for the highest possible price."
Look around your house. I'm sure many of the walls have something hanging on them. Mirrors, paintings, artwork, diplomas, photographs, posters... In my house, every wall has something on it. And every single item is level. Perfectly level. If it's not level, it gets straightened. Do you know why? ▶ Because crooked wall art sticks out and gets noticed. I bet you can walk through your home without paying much attention to what is hanging on the walls, but if one framed piece of wall art is slightly crooked, it will catch your attention. In fact, over time, level-hanging wall art almost becomes invisible. You hardly notice it. It blends in. But a crooked picture stands out like an honest politician. Now...let's focus on you, your real estate brand, and your marketing efforts. Remember, the purpose of marketing is to catch people's attention. You want to stand out from the crowd. You want to be the crooked picture on the wall. Let's face it; a sea of Realtors serves your local area. And if your branding and marketing look like everyone else's, you will blend into the crowd. Most Realtors are on the same "level" in the consumer's mind. What can you do to stand out? What makes you different? What about you will catch the attention of people looking to buy or sell a home? It's your USP, or Unique Sales Proposition. Some agents call it their Unique Service Proposition. Your USP gets a potential client to pause and hear what you are saying. Otherwise, you are just another Realtor and another level picture hanging on the wall. It's time to get "crooked," be different from others and be noticed for the unique professional you are. To establish yourself as a unique and exceptional real estate service provider and turn superior 5-star service into your Unique Selling Proposition (USP), highlight the elements when meeting with potential clients. Discuss your distinctive services in detail. Whatever the focus of your USP, ensure you truly stand behind it and deliver on the promise.
➡️ Do you really want to have a successful real estate business? ➡️ Do you really want to make a difference in people's lives? ➡️ Do you really want to live a life that matters and leave a legacy? Then stop letting every day slip away without planning your destiny. You must find the time or make the time every day to map out your future. Every successful business I know of, real estate or otherwise, started out with a dream and a plan. Someone had a dream, then put it into writing, and then put their dream into action. Start by identifying your magic time. Your magic time is the time you set aside to think. Maybe you are an early riser. Maybe you like to stay up later than everyone else in the house. Whenever that time is, claim it to be YOUR time. Protect it. Never let others steal it from you. Because your magic time is YOURS. Always have a pen and paper nearby during your magic time. Use your magic time to visualize the ideal real estate business for you. Write out EVERY DETAIL of the business you dream of having: ✅ Create a mission statement for your business. ✅ What is your target income? ✅ How will you generate new leads and referrals? ✅ What neighborhoods will you specialize in? ✅ Will you work alone or lead a team? ✅ What systems do you need to create? ✅ When will you hire an assistant? ✅ Where will you look for guidance? ✅ Who will hold you accountable? Strategize what you must do to turn your dream business into YOUR reality. Be realistic about the time it will take to achieve YOUR plan. Most agents overestimate what they can do in a day and underestimate what they can do in a week. They overestimate what they can do in a month and underestimate what they can accomplish in a year. I promise you this...if you make time to dream about and plan YOUR business, YOUR future, and YOUR life, your creative juices will soon flow and reveal to you the steps you need to take to get there. Be honest with yourself. If you do not design a plan, you are just winging it. And that's not a strategy for success. The time you set aside to think is critical to your growth.
Mastermind members, We are a community of individuals who are passionate about Real Estate, personal development, and business growth. And we grow best when we grow together. Here's a little secret about this Mastermind: the value you gain from this community is directly proportional to the input you provide. Your input can be as simple as leaving a comment on a post that resonates with you or as significant as initiating your own discussions. Whether you are sharing an experience, asking a question, or seeking feedback on a new idea or a piece of marketing content you've created, every contribution enriches our community. By engaging actively, not only do you get to learn from the collective wisdom of others, but you also give others a chance to learn from you. And I believe every single one of you has valuable insights to offer. Never underestimate the power of your voice or the potential impact of your curiosity. Lastly, remember, this Mastermind is about creating a safe, respectful space for everyone to learn and grow. So, when you're offering feedback, keep it constructive and kind. This way, we maintain a community where everyone feels encouraged to participate. It's up to us to make this Mastermind a remarkable place of knowledge and support. Here's to growing together, --Dennis