How They Did It:
How Lauren Went From Struggling to Successful
and Tripled Her Income in One Year!
Today on Confessions of a Top Producing Real Estate Agent, I am interviewing one of the original graduates of the AgentGradSchool.com program, Lauren Kolazas. Lauren went from struggling to successful and tripled her income in just one year!
Lauren’s story in real estate is not unlike many other agents. Although she held a real estate license for years, she was scared to truly commit to growing a successful business and would keep other jobs that stood in her way.
Lauren says “At the time, I thought I was only saying I was in marketing because I didn’t like certain aspects of the job of being a real estate agent. Having hindsight now, I realize I was saying it to protect myself from failure.” When she found herself unemployed, seven months pregnant and trying to decide between another 9-5 job with her baby in daycare all day or working for herself, she reached out to me.
Here’s how she went from struggling to successful:
When Lauren actually sat down and calculated what she would need to make to cover basic bills and necessities for her family, she discovered it was just three houses a year. Just three. That made her goal feel much more clear and attainable.
From there, she followed the system I lay out in Your First Successful Year.
1.) She learned that you have only two choices when you market yourself as a real estate agent. You can either talk to people you know or to people you don’t know. Those are the only two options and starting with people you know is better because they’re more easily converted, they already know you and it’s free to reach them. This is the best way to start.
2.) From there, Lauren followed the steps to create a weekly newsletter and sent it to everyone she knew. She realized the hardest part was coming up with content so she used the content in Swipefile and simple copied and pasted each and every week.
3.) She created a lead producing website. This wasn’t an ordinary real estate website. No, it was one specifically created to produce leads for her (so she didn’t have to pay other people to produce leads for her…). Not only that, there was a lead magnet that helped her grow her email list even more. You can have a website just like this too.
4.) After creating this solid foundation in her business, a system for talking to people she knew and growing a list of people she didn’t know, she had to do something that most real estate agents don’t want to do to bust through a block in her business. This piece is CRUCIAL to becoming successful and is the opposite of what most real estate agents think will work.
She had to niche.When you niche, everything becomes easier—getting clients, serving those clients and creating loyal, repeat clients who want to refer you business too.
Here’s how to pick a niche to grow your business beyond your wildest dreams:
1.)Who you are best at serving?Don’t rush this. For Lauren, her niche and who she was best at serving didn’t come instantly. She had to think about what experiences she had had related to real estate and who she could solve a problem for.
2.)The best niche is someone you are a few steps ahead of. That’s the group of people who you can actually add value you to. That’swhere you need to be. Lauren sat with this question for a while, but then had a eureka moment when she realized that her niche was essentially herself. She had recently relocated her young family to a new neighborhood and had found the process to be overwhelming as she tried to find the ideal new neighborhood. If Lauren, a real estate agent, was overwhelmed at the process of finding a house, she surmised that others might be overwhelmed by the experience as well. She decided to focus on the families in her previous neighborhood who were looking to buy their second, more long term home.
3.)Niche down even more than you think you should. Lauren’s niche was so focused that she niched not only to a neighborhood of 600 homes and potential clients to an even smaller niche of just 300. For people who might fear that’s too small of a niche, Lauren says “As soon as I niched, everything became clear. I knew what to say and how to say it. I knew who to talk to. Everything I said resonated with my potential clients.”
The more you niche, the more people can hear you.
If you’re marketing your real estate business to everyone, how much can you really afford to do to reach them? Lauren’s niche was so focused, she could suddenly afford to send them postcard mailers, therefore staying at the front of their minds even more. “I felt people needed to hear from me more consistently and in different ways. I started to layer my marketing.”
4.)Listen to your niche and give them what they need to get from where they are to where they want to be. Address what’s stopping them from already having done what they want to do. Lauren noticed the moms in her mom’s group emails constantly asking “We’re outgrowing our house, what area should we move to?” She decided to create a list of property recommendations at a variety of price points and send that out as part of her newsletter. Leads thanked her extensively for the recommendations. Lauren had solved the main problem of her niche: where do we go now that we’ve outgrown our space?
Then something incredible happened. Lauren had niched down so successfully and was reaching her ideal clients so well that she had more business than she could handle. Instead of running out of business with a niche market so specific, Lauren found that she had to turn business away. Yes,niching down to a very small, very concentrated list produced more clients than she could handle.
Instead of burdening herself with taking on the tasks of managing additional staff, Lauren decided to stop sending out postcards. She could stop spending money on marketing because her free marketing was so targeted and clear, it was creating too much business for her to handle.
But, more than anything, Lauren was clear from the beginning on what she wanted her life to look like and created a real estate business that supported THAT. That was her guiding compass all along, the program running in the background that helped her make every decision and move forward with every step along the way.
So, start there. Decide what the life you want to live looks like and then set about creating a business that supports that. Being a successful real estate agent isn’t about serving every single person or taking on more clients than you need to. Really understanding a specific area and a specific type of client also makes it easy to know when you can’t help someone and to not feel any guilt about referring them to another agent. Focus on where you can add value and the business will follow.
Want to learn how to do that? Well, that’s the very first module in Your First Successful Year and I’m giving it to you for free here. Why? Because I can give you every tactic in the word, but if you don’t have a clear sense of what you want your life to look like, none of the tactics will work correctly. So, start there. Paint a very clear picture of the life you want your business to create for you. I call it you big why and you can get that free worksheet here:
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