S5 E10: Strategies for the Spring Market
Ren Jones (00:04):
It’s that time. Welcome to ROADMAP, How to Take Three Listings a Week Until You’re Ready for More. Each week, we interview a great agent who’s consistently taking several listings each week. And we have an exciting guest today. We encourage you to take notes as quickly as you can and then use the copycat principle. Hopefully, you’re watching on either Vulcan7, or we simulcast on the Lead Gen Facebook group. So we have a large audience there again today as well. They have 51,000 members. We’re going to be pausing for a commercial message during the show as a thank you to the Lead Gen folks. Let’s welcome our guests today from Westchester, New York, Mr. Aaron Wittenstein.
Aaron Wittenstein (00:54):
What’s up everybody?
Ren Jones (00:55):
Is the snow done there yet, Mr. Aaron, or are you chipping icicles away?
Aaron Wittenstein (01:00):
No, man, we’ve got 50 degrees today, which is really nice. And then we’re going to get 65 on Friday, yet it’s going to be thunderstorms.
Ren Jones (01:08):
There we go. Well, it could have been snow. Could’ve been snow. Could’ve been snow. One of the things we’re trying to help our audience, and with the 51,000 people you have that are involved with you, it’s the same message, you know what’s coming, I know what’s coming, and I wanted to get your thoughts on it. As soon as we hit the last week of April, all these agents, their listings went under contract, they got all these homeless buyers. All of a sudden, things started closing at the end of April, in the month of May, closing, closing, closing, closing. Homeless buyer, homeless buyer. They have no time to look for a new business.
But the public, April, May, June, they’re like, Here I am. I’m ready to buy, I’m ready to sell, come, come, and they can’t find an agent because the agents say, I can’t handle the business I have now. How do we help people? They’re going to lose 30,000, 50,000, 80,000, $100,000, April, May, June. They’re going to lose that money because they can’t handle the capacity. What say you?
Aaron Wittenstein (02:15):
How do you do that? How do you do that? How do you do that? So two things popping into mind is, let’s say at one point in your career, you’re able to handle one transaction. That’s all you can handle. All you can handle is one. All right? And then suddenly two more transactions get popped on your bell, which means you’re at three transactions. So it’s kind of like that rubberband effect where you start off there and the more that you get, the more of an ability you have to grow, which means the more you can handle. So eventually it’s like, pew.
But then what happens is, the busier that you get, the more help you need to have. So whether that’s hiring an operations manager, whether that’s hiring a buyer specialist, shifting your buyer spec, buyers leads off to another agent, it’s just figuring out how to manage that all. For example, what I realized, gosh, five years ago is that buyers take up the most amount of time. They do. You could probably sell five listings within the amount of time it takes to work with one buyer. Sorry to find my camera there. So what my main suggestion is become a listing heavy business because you could go on vacation, I’m going to Disney World… You go to Disney World, you could sell three listings. So will be able to gain more business. You just can handle it. The more you get, the more you can handle.
Ren Jones (03:21):
But the more listings you sell, the more immediate homeless A+ buyers you create. What do you do with those?
Aaron Wittenstein (03:28):
Well, what I did when I didn’t have any help was I found the top producing team in the office and I made a deal with them and I said, I’m going to charge you X, which is a little bit more than a normal referral fee. And they handled all of my buyers. That was until I started formulating a team. Because you got to start somewhere and you got to hire administrative in first to help you out. Because once you have administrative and you can start building, building, building a bit more and then you bring your buyer specialist on board so you don’t lose that extra 20, 30%.
Ren Jones (03:58):
Okay, fair enough. So knowing it’s going to happen, they have to be prepared. They can’t get to where they just on April 20th, stop looking for new business until October. Yet, they do every year. They do. But it’s so easy to get. Think about it, May 15th, can you walk down the street and find a buyer or a seller in two seconds?
Aaron Wittenstein (04:28):
Ren Jones (04:30):
Yeah. But they’re not going to do it. So we’ve got to help them hire somebody part-time, get two other agents that don’t do that much in the office to all share an assistant, find somebody that is really good with buyers and work out a little arrangement on what to pay them and work out a little pact or maybe two of them. Because if they’re listing a lot of property, they’re probably going to need two. Somebody that’s really good on the buy side because like you said, buyers take time.
Aaron Wittenstein (05:01):
And it is just being smart about it. You got to follow the model, bring in the way you got to bring stuff in. I remember the first thing I did is, I had a transaction manager because I really couldn’t afford anybody full time. So they charged me 200, 300 bucks a pop per transaction. That helped get some of the listing stuff, the listing uploading, the green sheets, all that stuff off my plate. So I don’t know any companies off the top of my head, but there are some phenomenal companies out there that do transaction management
Ren Jones (05:27):
Right, in-house and outside. In every market, there are people that all they do is handle your pen to close for your market. And I heard an interesting one I’d never heard before, in fact, you know her, my co-host who’s on several of these shows, Carly Hathaway, one of the things she did was, she made a deal with the transaction coordinator, I’ll pay you double. So if it’s 300 or 350 per closing, I’ll pay you 700, but you handle everything, troubleshoot it, everything. Not just the basics. Because, the transaction coordinator doesn’t really get involved in troubleshooting usually. But she made a deal, said I’ll pay you double and you take care of all the problems related to it too. Because then if we can keep listing, really pulling those fish in, let somebody else filet them and cook them and fry them and sell them.
Aaron Wittenstein (06:24):
It’s just getting the busy work off your plate. That’s the major thing. Because when you’re trying to do every single role in your business, it becomes a challenge, it really does. And you can keep that going. Let’s say you’re doing one, two transactions a month, there’s probably a possibility of doing that. But once you start extending yourself out is when you find yourself working 60, 78 hours a week and you’re uploading listings at four o’clock in the morning, that’s when you know have a problem.
Ren Jones (06:46):
Yeah, well, that it can be a pleasant problem if you don’t have time to upload all the listings you brought in.
Aaron Wittenstein (06:54):
I like my sleep too much.
Ren Jones (06:56):
I love that problem. What else should they be paying attention to going into spring?
Aaron Wittenstein (07:01):
Well, I just think part of it where people really fail is the consistent aspect of lead generation. I talk about this a lot, is that every single day you need to be doing something for two to three hours a day. For me right now, it’s been a challenge. The market’s changing. I can go 2, 3, 4 days without getting an appointment, which is not abnormal. Saturday, I was lucky enough where I set three. But it’s the consistent work. Consistent work is that I know no matter how much I struggle, how much that I’m not getting what I need. You know what I mean? I got to put food on the table, is that eventually it has to pop. The consistency, it just has to work. And where people don’t do it is, they get busy, they get set up with appraisals and home inspections and summertime and all that kind of stuff and in essence they quit for that two to three months.
Ren Jones (07:51):
Yeah, they tell themselves a story. They’ll set up a meeting at 9:00 AM or an appraisal at 9:00 AM or it’s something else at 9:00 AM. Should they even be allowed to set any kind of meeting at 9:00 AM ever?
Aaron Wittenstein (08:05):
No. And the reason that I look at it is that… People wonder why do you do your lead generation first thing in the morning when you should do it between 8 and 11 is because the day hasn’t beat my ass yet. By the time one to two o’clock rolls around, I don’t want to sit here and talk to people, that’s the last thing I want to do. But 8 to 11, you’re in a point where… how can I put it, where it’s like you got your most amount of energy. You’ve got your most amount of resolve, the day hasn’t plugged in, oh, [inaudible 00:08:34] in your mind. So that’s why I suggest 8 to 11. If you can’t do 8 to 11, do 9 to 12, do 9 to 11 do something.
Ren Jones (08:41):
Right. And I hear you and I think it speaks volumes because there are people that are going to say, well when do you lead generate? Well, whenever I can fit it in. I don’t think that works. It has to be from the time you get up until you return calls and go to lunch, you do it in that timeframe or else it’s just not going to happen. You’re going to get busy and you’re never going to fit it in.
Aaron Wittenstein (09:05):
Exactly. And it’s-
Ren Jones (09:06):
Some people talk about how you step on yourself if you lead generate late in the day, that’s actually the time you’re supposed to be meeting with people later on in the day. So you end up stepping on yourself.
Aaron Wittenstein (09:19):
Yeah. So it’s just get it out of the way first thing in the morning. It’s the most efficient time to do it. It’s a habit, it’s going to take a while to get that rolling up and going. But do that and then let the rest of the day fall where it may.
Ren Jones (09:33):
So is this a good year for you?
Aaron Wittenstein (09:37):
The last two years have been phenomenal. This year, full transparency is not starting off the way that I want it to at all. I just think the market is changing and I’m learning that I need to change with it. And I struggled doing that probably the fourth quarter of last year. So I’m feeling it right now. God’s honest truth. You’re getting the expireds that aren’t answering the phone anymore, the for sale by owners aren’t selling, which is a change in the market. I’ll be okay. I’m not worried about it. I just anticipate my second and third quarter to be a hell of a lot stronger than my first quarter was.
Ren Jones (10:09):
Historically, unless you’re in a resort market, that is the case, your second quarter is always twice as big as the first.
Aaron Wittenstein (10:19):
Yeah. I sold a lot. I had a bunch of inventory that floated from last year in January where I sold 12 or 13 listings within a span of six weeks, which is awesome. Yet, what I’m looking at right now is my inventory is low. I got extremely low inventory right now and my challenges have been getting the new inventory because if you don’t have the inventory, you’re going to feel it in two to three months.
Ren Jones (10:42):
Yeah, exactly. You got to build it up. Let me try a different tact. We see two camps of agents out there, one, the call their database and just sort of hi, checking in, call to say hi, blah blah, but they don’t get that much business from it. And then other agents that call their database seem to get a lot of business from their database. What’s going on there? Why does one group fail so miserably and another group do so well with the database? What are some techniques that they can use to make it not just a check in call, but a call to help them or their friends or people they know to get that business?
Aaron Wittenstein (11:27):
Well for me, I’m not the strongest database person in the world, okay, so I don’t know if I’m the correct person to be answering this question. For me, I’ve been here for about five years. We had my twins two years in and we didn’t really sleep much and I didn’t really have the opportunity to build that much of a sphere out here. I’m slowly but surely starting to build that. So I don’t have people in my sphere. If I was back in Illinois, hell, the last year I was there, I got 17 Facebook referrals from there. I haven’t built that up yet. It’s going to take time.
Ren Jones (11:58):
I forgot that’s a newer market for you.
Aaron Wittenstein (11:59):
Yeah, which is fine.
Ren Jones (12:00):
You got two markets.
Aaron Wittenstein (12:02):
Which is fine. And then my past clients is, I really dropped the ball. And from everything I’m seeing right now is that’s where the market is shifting to is past clients and database and all that. Which is why everything, even this conversation is shifting me over to, all right, let’s start working on it. Let’s start working on it. Let’s start working on it. Because I need to find a happy meeting between that and the cold calling.
Ren Jones (12:24):
Well you like me, that expired, that for sale owner is 90% now business, 10% future business. When you’re talking to your database, that flips so it’s 10% now business and we know some people do really well with it. And folks, if you’re looking at his greatest strength, it’s obvious what your greatest strength is, energy, enthusiasm. You’re passionate, you’re excited. And that attracts people to want to do business with you.
Aaron Wittenstein (12:54):
Oh, you’re too sweet.
Ren Jones (12:55):
So to check in with you on that. So how do they fake it till they make it? Have you always been this way, Aaron, or were you shy until two years ago or?
Aaron Wittenstein (13:07):
No, I’ve been cold calling since I was 16 years old so I’m 20 years in right now.
Ren Jones (13:12):
Aaron Wittenstein (13:12):
Yeah. I’ve done it forever, I don’t know any different. But what I will tell you is the sheer frustration of everything going on over the last couple months has really taken its toll on me which is abnormal for me. I’m usually, let’s get it going, rock, let’s get it going. And over the last, I want to say the month to six weeks, it’s been a challenge for me because, and I can’t believe I’m actually saying this, I’ve been rejected so much to a point where it’s like I’m concerned about calling people that I think are slam dunk leads because I’m afraid they’ve already listed and they’re going to tell me to go [inaudible 00:13:48] myself. And it’s odd for me even saying that knowing-
Ren Jones (13:55):
So how do you handle rejection? Because if you’re struggling with it a little bit, our audience has an even a tougher time with it than you would.
Aaron Wittenstein (14:07):
I have some weird odd faith that it’s all going to be okay.
Ren Jones (14:11):
Well and it is. We’ve seen late starting years before.
Aaron Wittenstein (14:14):
Yeah. And it has to because I’m working way too flipping hard for this not to work. I’m in here every day, three to four hours a day. I don’t even want to say my fair share, I’ve had an excessive share of things that didn’t work out according to plan. And it’s just been like a revolving six months of this going on. So eventually it turns and one of my favorite sayings… I’m going to read it because I can’t remember it. Pain is temporary. It may last for a minute, one hour or even a year. Eventually it will subside, something will take its place. However, if I quit, it will last forever.
Ren Jones (14:52):
I love it. Because I think it’s just a late starting year, one of the things I’m excited about is, could the market possibly slow down just a little bit? And when you look at that, it’s a gift to us. They need our services at a higher level. A for sale owner is not selling, a listing expired. If it will just slow down just a little bit more, it’s a huge gift. Because if it stays overheated for too long, then the public goes, well we don’t need an agent, they don’t do anything. But if it slows down a little bit, they surely need this at higher level.
Aaron Wittenstein (15:36):
It’s just odd, what’s going on, the expireds are relisting with the same agent, which it blows my mind why someone would be that stupid. It’s just so stupid.
Ren Jones (15:48):
Aaron Wittenstein (15:50):
I don’t get it. There’s two things I don’t understand, why you would relist with the same agent. I get combative… I try not to get combative on the phone, but I almost want to be like, are you stupid? And then for sale by owners that don’t answer the phone, that one blows my mind as well. So those are the two-
Ren Jones (16:05):
Yeah, how does that work?
Aaron Wittenstein (16:08):
Or they’re, I can’t talk right now, can you call me at 7 o’clock at night? I’m no, what if I wanted to buy your house right now and see it right now? How do you expect to do that?
Ren Jones (16:15):
I know, it is hilarious that they do that. That’s a hoot. So what is your strongest point for someone who’s thinking about going back with their prior agent? What observation do you make to them?
Aaron Wittenstein (16:33):
I don’t get that far on the phone call because I typically just hang up on them before I say something stupid. I’ve never found anything that works. I figure you can’t fix stupid is the best way to put it. Yet, what I’ll be like, they’re, we’re going to list with our former agent, be like, really? And then they say something stupid and I’m, why? And they say something more stupid and then you say, you know what, I don’t get it. And then they say something. So I go with those three questions just to see if there’s any way to dive into that.
Ren Jones (17:05):
Well, apparently it works for you because you’re hugely successful.
Aaron Wittenstein (17:10):
Yeah. But it’s with those lately, it’s hard to fix them. And that’s the challenge I’m running into. And I’d rather push onto somebody else that I have an opportunity with rather than try and fix someone’s idioticness.
Ren Jones (17:21):
Okay, you use the four letter word next, huh?
Aaron Wittenstein (17:24):
Ren Jones (17:26):
Good. So folks, one of the neat things is you can go online and watch Aaron Prospect live. Isn’t that the case? You do that every week, don’t you?
Aaron Wittenstein (17:35):
Once a week right now is roughly what I do it.
Ren Jones (17:37):
Right. So if you go to facebook.com/groups/gotobjections and sign up. It’s a closed group, but everybody in that group is all about lead generation. Best techniques, what to say, how to say, when to say it. And there’s so much sharing. 51,000 people in your group, right? Somewhere in that neighborhood.
Aaron Wittenstein (18:04):
Ren Jones (18:07):
Yeah, that’s a great neighborhood. It’s a great neighborhood.
Aaron Wittenstein (18:09):
Ren Jones (18:09):
So if you are building your business, you want to be involved, the group is called LGSO, Lead Gen Scripts and Objections. So facebook.com/groups/gotobjections and say, please may I join? And then he will say yes and have some fun. Right?
Aaron Wittenstein (18:30):
Yeah. I’ll say yes.
Ren Jones (18:32):
Now, you have a program called Trajectory NOW?
Aaron Wittenstein (18:34):
Yeah, it’s a-
Ren Jones (18:35):
People can join that and get involved even at a higher level.
Aaron Wittenstein (18:39):
Mm-hmm. Group coaching program. We do daily group prospecting. We do a digital boiler room on Friday. We have phone calls every Tuesday between 1 and 2:15 EST time.
Ren Jones (18:55):
Yeah, during our show.
Aaron Wittenstein (18:55):
I know. I can’t even point my fingers that way. Go watch them and then we record it just in case. So in case-
Ren Jones (19:00):
You can watch it on replay. They can watch it right now, right? They can watch last week’s right now. Good.
Aaron Wittenstein (19:06):
We got everything archived.
Ren Jones (19:08):
Good. Well, this has been a treat, this helps. There’s just a lot of people that are going to leave so much money on the table, April, May, June. If they can think about that ahead of time, what do I need to do to be able to handle eight transactions a month or 12 transactions a month? They need to start mapping that out now.
Aaron Wittenstein (19:26):
Mm-hmm. Yeah, no, definitely. And even for me, I get four… I’m at a half a million dollar average, 5,000 a market with a lot of competition and high price point, a lot of houses. I sell four houses a month, 48 houses a year.
Ren Jones (19:40):
I know. But your 48 is like 198 based on the price point.
Aaron Wittenstein (19:45):
And attorneys just make it all the equivalent of three transactions. So believe me, I work hard for my money, so you better treat me right.
Ren Jones (19:51):
There’s New York for you, yeah. Yeah, they do. That is a kind thing they do. Yes.
Aaron Wittenstein (19:58):
Ren Jones (19:58):
Thank you so much. This is going to help a lot and I hope we get a lot of people to jump into your group and maybe even interject into… It’s trajectorynow.com, is that right?
Aaron Wittenstein (20:09):
That is correct, sir.
Ren Jones (20:10):
The group. Good. Perfect. Good. Well thank you again for helping and I’ll see you offline.
Aaron Wittenstein (20:18):
Awesome. All right, Ren, thanks so much for having me, brother.
Ren Jones (20:20):
Thanks, Aaron. Appreciate it.
Aaron Wittenstein (20:21):
All right. Have a good one. Bye.
Ren Jones (20:27):
See you. Bye-bye. What an exciting show. If you’re watching on the Vulcan7 network and you want to get involved with the Lead Gen Facebook group, as we mentioned earlier in the show, they’re at facebook.com/groups/gotobjections. And Aaron Wittenstein, who was our guest today, was a great giveback guy and runs a great program called trajectorynow.com. And finally, you’ve probably been wondering what his secret is for energy and enthusiasm. Well, when he’s wrapping up his lead follow up, returning calls at 11:30, before he goes to lunch, he gets some delicious Graeter’s Mint Chocolate Chip. Since 1870, they’ve been making Graeters Mint Chocolate Chip. This is the one for listings.
As Aaron said today, buyers take time, listings take skill. They have other flavors if you’re working with buyers, if you’re working with listings, you want the mint chocolate chip. If the listing is a little slow to sell, dig a hole in the front yard, bury it upside down, and that listing will sell just like that. Want to thank everybody for being here and we’ll see you next week when we have another exciting guest taking lots of listings. Remember folks, in the late spring, April, May, June, it’s coming. Be ready to handle the extra business. Get ready now. See you soon.