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NATIONWIDE & INTERNATIONAL EDITION

Tips on Being A Good Team Leader

5 STEPS

FEATURED AGENTS

JEREMY CUPP DOUG DILLING JENNIFER GILCHREST MANDY GOLD DOMINIC LeSIEUR ALEXANDRA McCAULEY ANGI MORGAN BETSY PICOT MICHAEL ST. JEAN DJ SERAMUR

TO ACHIEVE LONG TERM SUCCESS AS A REAL ESTATE AGENT

CONVERTING INTERNET LEADS TO REAL LIFE SALES

COVER STORY

ZACHARY K. UNDERWOOD


NATIONWIDE & INTERNATIONAL EDITION

Butler Mortgage Inc. is proud to congratulate

Michael St. Jean

JEREMY CUPP DOUG DILLING

Agent needs and How did Jeremy Cupp become one Top of the mostDoug Dilling – Lead of The Doughis service, he developed client’s an attention to Team at United Real Estate Indianapolis –and a strong work ethic work for 27 hedobrings 19 23 well respected11 agents in NorthwestDilling Arkansas? tothem his is a no-nonsense, straight-shooting Realtor who has some agents who Jeremy had a successful career selling phoneas an agent. spent nearly two decades building his real estate book ads when his company placed him in knowledge base. Deeply committed to providing his While Doug and Bentonville. He began selling ads to Realtors, in today’sthey m clients with the utmost in customer service, DougJeremy understands thatrelationships team have been consistently recognized as amost buyers begin theirinsearch their follow who recognized he had the makingsand ofhis a great for up, a national top-selling and top-volume entity by Unitedonline. To ensure each listing whelm or annoy agent. In 2013, they encouraged him to study looks its Real Estate, and their reputation as agents who truly or physical maili for his license and by 2014 he was selling stagersDoug. and “W p care about their buyers and sellers precedes them. Jeremy and his team hireexplains real estate full time. He completed over $3.5 sional photographers, as fill well asinboxes high q their ALEXANDRA JEREMY CUPP DOUG DILLING MICHAEL ST. JEAN ZACHARY K. ZACHARY K. UNDERWOOD began remain in contact million in transactions inLhis first Doug year in the his journey in real estate in 2001,vendors to complete any needed imp UNDERWOOD DOMINIC eMcCAULEY SIEUR following a career in Non-Profit Association Man-ments. For his luxury listings, see them in church industry and has been growing his business he use on being featured for Canada agement and Fundraising. “I had spent most of my erings of associat When speaking Top Agent – of John business page:Touring, “I have been associated since.Angi He Morgan now leads 12 Stones Realty to his sellers, her Virtual which provides adver With Agent a commitment to his clientswith andever a true while also I Facebook taking lifetreatment in that world,” explains Doug, “and didn’t 36 will do an annual in Top Magazine! 28 31 32isin the 35 DJastheS Jones Estate in Murfreesboro, Tennessee one or donethe business with thousands of Realtors over39 the BETSY PICOT passion for real estate,Real Dominic LeSieur high quality photos and ensuring property Group—named from a –story book of nationally and world-wide, as well want to do that anymore. So I took a two-week intensive educaother mailings throughout struck by her about enthusiasm her obvilast 25 years. I would be hardwebsites. pressed to He findutilizes one that Listing B has made great immediately strides in the Outaouais looks Joshua God’sand promise. His team of its tenbest. property tion course, got my license, and hit the ground running.” Selling for them, so we’re notWith going et BetsyasPicot’s legacy in real estate st sure each and every one of ousIncommitment to making is as hardworking and that cares much for their cliregion of Canada. 2018, he placed 31 the Greater Indianapolis area, team consists of three ing out to them.” Top Agent Jennifer is not coordinator inentire office allows me to be in front clients to Mandy Gold -Arkansas, of Haymore Realhas Estate One aspect of more her job thatface Mandy takes particular pride inand is agentsGilchrest serves Northwest which more Fortune toDoug’s share information with potential buyers, who rec stretches than forty years constru buyersbrokers and sellers isofprovided with the very best other ents like Angi Morgan. She is a true more servant in every in production outher of 3,169 in all After the transaction is over, clients spread the equally dedicated and knowledgeable agents, each of whom only a skilled and knowledgeable face and I am at– ease knowing she’s on top of every single detail.” in Sierra Vista, Arizona is truly her affiliation with the Homes for Heroes program, which has 500 companies than any other area in the country. “People virtual tour link and information on area schools. The tor, Top multiple states. Beginning back in real estate guidance available. While relatively new to share sense of thesaid, word.” Quebec at RE/MAX, and 3rd in Outaouais. word his service. One recently “In hisaabout client-first, ethical business ethos. Agents Frank Boles, Members of The Doug Dilling Realtor who works hard to a help full-service With career helped local Military (active, reserve and veterans), Firefightand Ow move here distinguished from allher over theagent. world,” Jeremy says. “It’s kind of this thorough marketing approach is often a quick s Ohio, Betsy had always toyed with the industry, Angi has already herself as Joea Lackner and Bethany Schultz “all how have the same desire to proensuring that each and every l He also made the RE/MAX of Fame 1 difficult time, Dominic knew to listen clients Hall achieve the American Dream that Jennifer sincerely appreciates her clients, past and present, and in Valp background includes work in the ers, EMS, Law Enforcement, Healthcare Professionals and the idea of becoming an agent, of a melting pot.” Bentonville hosts a film festival each May a competitive price. a Realtor who truly cares about her clients, and who Angi’s commitment to her clients far transcends the a high of support toshe ourSELL clients,” Doug. ”I didn’t as many potential buyers as p Million in less than five years, and placed helpquality me all the steps to andsays BUY of homeownership, but sheinsurance, is also an title, works hardvide toand maintain theindeep bonds forms many of amount them. suited appraisal and mortTeachers save awith significant ofcherishes money purchasing but actedwhen on relacuriosity always of puts their best interests front andactors center.in attendance. closing table, and toshe onlynever the with many A-list Lake setquickly! outNearby to form aBeaver team, but these amazing folks came me not photography isher utilized exclu 2nd for Inc. the | number at Very professional and attentive!” genuine and ethical profesThat appreciation is clearly reciprocated, as best evidenced bybecause the Butler Mortgage FSCOauthentic, Lic. transactions #12118 to his m until the right opportunity finally gage lending fields, Mandy is ideally a home. “It’s kind of my driving force right now,” she enthuses. tionships she forms with them, she also works hard they saw what I’d accomplished, and were looking for guidance as vided when necessary. and Hobbs State Park offer opportunities for boating, fishAfter working with Jeremy, his clients remember no RE/MAX Vision in 2018. Another wrote, “Dominic SOLD our property JENNIFER MANDY GOLD DOMINIC L e SIEUR ANGI MORGAN BETSY PICOT DJ SERAMUR sional who can be trusted to always glowing reviews she has received for her services, including this one Hoosier T: 905-569-8326 or 1-888-684-8326 aligned. From there, over appreAngi,| F: the647-499-4442 self-professed owner of a “servant’s heart,” herthey to and nurture them. “Being creative goes beganand their careers. So I maintain took themfor under myitwing and situated to provide many clients “It’s aperfect great program, and lets them know that they’re FAST weown found the home us! ing, hiking, and camping. his excellent service and expertise, but also his moves good n put her buyers and sellers needs front from Zillow.com: “We interviewed several Realtors before we chose ty-five GILCHREST showed them the ropes, and they’ve all remained partbeen of theateam.” Every member of Doug’sshe tea daniel.patton@butlermortgages.com to New she York andandMichigan, spent twenty-five to entering the world along with having teacher,” says, she with the very best inWe comprehensive ciated forsense their selflessness.” It has clearly been a and busy coupleWorking ofyears yearsprior We very are MORE satisfied!” of humor ability to make the process belt, fun DJ center. with Keller WilJennifer. pleasedthan with our decision... Jennifer wasand amazcommunity, of real estate as an elementary school teacher. “One Thisare devises unique, unforgettable ways their toher stay in touch. advanced career as and an does agentso real estate advocacy. deep well of for Dominic, but he is showing no signs of trustwo liams Green Meadow in Oklahoma ing to work with! She was always available when we needed her. If An impressive seventy percent of Jeremy’s business comes favorite part of the job is meeting new people ever #1 Mortgage Brokerage in 2017 Nearly seventy percent of Doug’s business is based on repeat ing their churches, neighborh summer,” shebeen recalls, “Iofdid some soul searching and “On Election Day, I dropped white and blue her love andoffasred, trainer—parlaying slowingsteadfast down. Real estate has afrom part Although Dominic is constantly working, industry knowledge, coupled with her effervescent and warm perthe most common complaint heard about real estate ted to providing exemplary custom City, Jennifer’s commitment to providing expert real estate she my did What notand know the answer toperhaps aPerhaps question she would research it until referred clients, the sign ofshe a‘Angi job well done service boards. repeat referral keeps his clients comTo give back to the community, he volunteers decided to make a huge careerand change and clients. get cookies that said for President,” she says with of surest teaching as served as a training director foramore with than his life for many years. “I first started a real he makes sure to maintain a balance. He with each passing year. sonality, has endeared her to her grateful buyers and sellers, who agents is poor communication, and there are innumerable buyadvocacy has resulted in real a business that is based significantly upon she had an answer. No job was too big or too small for her. If we in the highly-competitive real estate industry. “It’s because our CONTENTS ing back and spread Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) as an advoca estate license. The beauty of iteager is that to I still get tothe word about Jeremy? His laugh. “Yes, it was a little corny, but they appreciated ten years and passed along her insights to a range of agents estate marketing business called Visit 360 gives back his time andand resources towho various is not cookie-cutter, one-size-fits-all,” sayscakes Doug, Whenand asked hisreturn plans fo repeat and referred clients, a truepeople, signher of inbest her interests higheverbuying sell again weit.” will definitely choose Jennifer.” fully trust to putatI’m theirservice before herorapproach own. ers sellers lose out on while waiting for educate butexcellence now teaching them and sellShe also delivers lemon bundt inwhen the summer, stays in customer the about best inbuy Northwest Arkansas. He profoster children. He’s adeals member of theabout L along theOpération way. Today, Betsy has based atAmerican her Florida 21 yearsmarket. old. I managed and developed that company foris10 DJ’s realbeen career began organizations through RE/MAX, including asked what might account for the exceptional level loyalty his who “I estate don’t think I have anywhen major ly-competitive phone calls. Not so with Mandy, makes it a priority to ing houses.” That was inample 2016, and Angi’s exceptional work ethic to touch regularly viawhere more conventional methods like frequent phone office since 2001, where she has built upon her abiding repuvides information for people relocating the area for he focuses on giving back to other veterans. and attempting to purchase his first years while buying several properties to renovate,” Dominic Enfant Soleil, a non-profit which raises funds to individualized help sick clients display. “We arereturn truly all services onasa quickly really good trajectory.” Expert, thorough marketing also plays aabout huge roleHOW in Jennifer’s 4) 5 STEPS TO ACHIEVE 21) MIND–BENDING 33) TO The in reviews Mandy has received for 3 her services perhaps best every phone call, email and as possible. L resulted a business that boomed nearly from the start, and saw her calls, videos, texts and emails. Regardless thetext method, Angi mantation professionalism, follow-through, empowering internet,” explains, “and back th work. “We have avery great relocation package toprovince. educate peofree time, he loves toofspend time with his family, trav explains. have had a passion forestate the field since I wasabout children in the Quebec RE/MAX has for raised more and support. We really do everything from running errands, to hishe plan toand continue providing Jennifer’s interest“I in themeeting world of real was ignited continuing story. In addition to standard methods that take and exceeding the impressive sales goals she set forsuccess herself. ages to stay top-of-mind and appreciated by her past clients. illustrate the care she takes when guiding her clients through the “My buyers and sellers know they can always reach me, andofca her clientele through market knowledge. paperback book. I wanted copy dropping offsupport checks, to staging and everything else. Wealso know that has become hisacalling young, andTERM I always knew I purchased would be an entrepreneur.” than $23.7 million to the development of quality ple about the area, as well as about the process of buying.” bowling, and mountain biking on the local trails. His 1 LONG SUCCESS AS PHILOSOPHIES TO EXPAND OVERCOME YOUR twenty-five years ago, when she her home from two advantage of the internet and social media platforms, Jennifer In 2018 alone, she closed an incredible sixty-five deals, an accomoften-treacherous transaction process. Reads justfor one: “I cannot they canthe always getwhatever fast answers to any questions they might working with wouldn’t giveand to m our clients have busy schedules, so we’ll do it is takes love helping people, I lov children in Quebec since beginning Jeremy takesof. thethem. time topediatrics teach clients about each step of thevery old daughter, Lexie, currently taking classes toit obta well-respected agents who suggested she come and proud work for employs more personable methods. “I actually do a of lot of door plishment she is justifiably Angi is also much committed to giving back to the commurave about how amazing Mandy is! Aftertoamake year thefor have,” she our says. AtimeREAL AGENT YOUR PROFESSIONAL WORKPLACE FEARS Under the banner of Watson Corp., Betsy it on easier them. We spending base own expectations on become ourRealty with this job.” licensed simplyspearheads to have acc now beenESTATE ashe broker forenough five withwere 75 percent of his collaboration. Dominic also enjoys time with “At the He’s though,” recalls, “myyears, children small and IHe this knocking,” she says. “On Day, I handed out candy all the transaction process. has great communication skills andprovided real estate “For future, I’m hoping toatten mak nityValentine’s that has her withlicense. such immense support andhome, success. purchasing and after her work solo, serving clients across his the St. Johns County. market and our listing going stale, Mandy was able to revive business based on repeat clients and referrals. This high rate his family, including his girlfriend and their 18-month-old didn’t want to miss out onAngi’s any memories with But they evening, door 1999 knocking the Bunny and delivering PERSPECTIVE responds promptly to any questions. tois2004 heEaster family business!” Jeremy says. Now that’s a worthy commitment tothem. service is when perhaps best illustrated byand anFrom acrosShe aasDiplomat with Leadership Rutherford, which is a personal he studied Building Construction, There, ofa her business isestate driven excitement around ourhad listing and daughter. get ourashouse inthat justwhile While the financial rewards career in real arebynotrepeat eas- h is no–doubt due to histhe client-first mentality. “I think the most “Iwell.” am sold proud succeeding in amysizable work I70% of were grown and I now have grandchildren –served I decided enough candy Newsletters and flyersprogram also ensure that anyone whochase tic she utilizes, which exemplifies her approach tofor working with development designed to motivate participants toconnections develop as Iaas machine gunner the Marine Corps. During that will surely benefit clients and community! their own homes. He forged then and referral—a testament tohis the lasting important thing about the current market is that, a broker, am able to manage and maintain a good balance within the one month. She’s a creative, out-of-the box Realtor with a heart ily discounted, it’s the more personal side of the business thatbe 9) A STEP-BY-STEP 37) 5 SOCIAL MEDIA time to dedicate myself fully to the Jennifer her she needs expert“Eguidance where to her. of their leadershipwhile buyers andbusiness.” sellers: SERVE. “S obtained is for service,” explains, is for knows and enhance thefind quality inaccount addressing pertinent simultaneously selling style, real es and the results delivered. To for her working we have to really always give our 200% to give added value different spheres of my life,” he explains. of gold. was in answering questions, being provides mostcharitable job satisfaction. “I love license in 2016, and hit the ground running, achieving almost immeeducating myShe clients onsothekind real estate process, Rallis our for relational...I community needs.Mandy Amongwith manytheother efforts, she is being multiple investment properties. “B GUIDE TO CONVERTING 25) MODERN EMAIL MISTAKES REAL ESTATE cites personal attention, patience, andlet a commitment to for theand client andwant doextremely a great job of the advising and leading responsive, and making process sonot easy. able to Betsy call my clients to spending say, ‘congratulations, me an bring you diate success, is currently ranked among topRealtor. five percent of the When she’s working, Jennifer enjoys nothing more than to be more than your V is for the vision I have for the Don’t also extremely active with Candle Wishes, which exists toclients impact able to give my idea educating her clients as three of the foremost attributes of of herw them,” he says. For Dominic, there is no other choice than As Dominic looks towards the future, he is eager to continue the Central Oklahoma MLS, and seven surrounding Multiple Listher husband, their children andtotheir two grandchildren. waste your time with anyone go and seetime the your new house,’” she “At price,” the endtrue, point of thebe potential of their future and presentelse, home, EMandy!” is with for excellence, the lives of keys children inAGENTS need by makingMUST birthday wishes come INTERNET LEADS TO ETIQUETTE FOR TODAY’S AVOID ingsays. purchase says,million “and professional philosophy. Accordingly, she netshe$10 going above and which beyond expectations. Understanding that and investing in real estate.asHeaproviding currently owns 20 needs, properties, and ings Services. While her office is the in South Oklahoma City, Jennifer Church onbest Sunday family transaction, isessential important to them in particular. only know one way to do things, that’s the way.” and sharing the love of Jesusand Christ. Addithey’re usually very happy, I think that’s the in Valparaiso means I’m able to in average production yearly. “One of the things I focus pers on this the largest clients willcareer ever“Ifas make, wants to acquire 15 moreday, within theshe next two years. Dominic AGENTS REAL SALES is willing topurchase travelLIFE asisfarone as of necessary to his assist her they “Sunday isthe ourin family when we try to slow down, reconnect Angi also points to her former abelieves formative experience her tionally, isrewarding Ministry Team Leader ofand First Impressions at River their home before it hits the mark When asked what sheclients. personally inspires loyalty that most aspect of what Ion do.” and bring to the “Itable is that I’ve very patient,” Betsy says. his job seriously, and always wants what iswill best foryearsalso wants to continue growing his business as a broker. approach to real estate. “For twenty-five as a teacher, I did a Oaks Community Church. want mehe totakes take care of them personally,” she says, “then I drive catch up with each other,” she says. Jennifer is also a huge sports fan. keeps her clients returning and referring others, Mandy growsgiving pen- the best service make sureclients people the process and I realize that them. hisme buyers, heplan guides through step, those will do that by carried always to my lesson everythem Sunday,” she every says, “and plans were wherever I theyFor need to.”sive “MMA is actually my favorite,” she says“I with anot laugh, “whichunderstand shocks Currently overseeing a time highly-dedic for a moment before answering. “I think the biggest thing iswell-trained.” When she’s working, Mandy enjoys spending with all buyers and sellers have their own needs, level, leaving no question unanswered. Hein the provides the same while staying informed and For more information about Dilling out during that week classroom. Now, I do the same thing as an Angi’s primary goal for the future is to continue the growth ofcomfort her DJ can boast thatDoug his business is ba everyone.” The entire family are also dedicated philanthropists who 29) IF IT’S GOOD FOR 17) TIPS ONthat BEING A I’m very straightforward and very honest,” she muses. “My her husband and their four children, and encouraging in their agendas, and pace. My job as an agent is to match those things, repeat and referred clients, an im agent. I create a planisonbased Sunday I execute plan to the fullest. business, andvariety perhaps adding a few neworgateam members, particularly “About eighty-five percent of my business on and repeat cli- that give back to the community through of317-965-1001 local charitable please call or email Doug@DougDil extensive knowledge all aspects of realSOUL, estate really helps, espeafter-school activities. She also evident coaches local youth I’ve worked with people from walks of lifewith at just his commitment to danccustom GOOD LEADER THE IT’S GOOD very goal-oriented. If Iofcommit it to paper, it’s going to happen. a buyer’s agent. important, however, is herall commitment toand ents and referrals,” TEAM says I’m Jennifer, and when asked to account for nizations. ‘My family’s support of me is and offMost the charts,” says Jennifer. about every price point. At the end of the day, the common cially when working with first-time home buyers or anyone who ing and baton twirling. Mandy, a true entrepreneur, also owns a to account for this impressive loya accomplish goal I set.” Additonally, follows the continuing provide the amazing customer service that has become that impressive level of Iclient loyalty,every she grows thoughtful for a Angi“Iclosely have the most loving, supportive to family imaginable.” THE BUSINESS To them findthrough out more about Jeremy Cupp denominator is that every client a unique real estate doesn’t understand the entire process. Ione cananother.” walk spraywith tanning business that keeps hera,has occupied during thoseneed, rare C bible verse 1fully Peter 4:10 your giftsFOR to SERVE synonymous her name. “Buying or selling home is one of the moment. “I think it’s because they know that I’m “Use a genuine person,” and the of myisever job toand make sure they’re happy.” Angi’s savvyand acumen and commitment to service is looks perhaps decisions someone will possibly make,” says Angi. “My allthem, sides ofbusiness itI’m andvery make sure they know going on.” Mandy’s hours she isn’t working with buyers sellers. contact him what’s via email at jeremy@12stonesnwa.com orplan by phone at (479) 340-4744. she muses. “I truly take care of honest with them. The future brightbiggest for Jennifer, and herchallenge primary to is made bysothis testimonial that can begrowing found on passion isHer to educate and customer serve themservice throughout the process.” outgoing, affable personality also inspires exceptional goodwill. “I I walk them through everybest step of theevident process theyglowing are completely continue her business. impressive – You can also check him outWhen online at jeremycupp.realtor comes toasthe listing Betsy keenly aware of the risks and benefits decision they make. Edu-everywhich become her she calling card – will,future ofitcourse, frontasprocess, tendoftoevery become friends with almost clienthas I work with,” Mandy’s looksremain bright her past, andisher goalaware is to of the importance of a first impression. With that in mind, she cating them is very,310-734-1440 very important me. My fantastic transaction center. Phone | Fax 310-751-7068 says. “Itohave clients who have relocatedand here because they’re in grow her business while enhancing and growing her already-exincorporates the talents of a stager and professional photogCopyright Mag the military and they have no friends here yet, so they’ve put me ceptional reputation as a Realtor who providesTop theAgent very best raphy to ensure that every property is featured in its finest mag@topagentmagazine.com | www.topagentmagazine.com down as the emergency contact at their kid’s schools.” customer service available. light. From there, exposure across the leading online listing No portion of this issueFor maymore be reproduced in any manner whatsoever without prior consent of the publisher. Top Agent Magazine is information about Dominic LeSieur , platforms and local MLS boards ensures a wide-ranging published by Feature Publications GA, Inc. Although precautions are taken to ensure the accuracy publishedInmaterials, Top Agent person, Betsy produces high-quality please call 819-930-1191 or email dolesieur@hotmail.comdigitalofaudience. Magazine cannot be held responsible for opinions expressed or facts supplied by its authors.property To subscribe change address, sendto take home and booksorfor prospective buyers inquiry to mag@topagentmagazine.com. mull over, complete with relevant information about the

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ANGI MORGAN

MANDY GOLD JENNIFER GILCHREST

www.

Published in the U.S.

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community. Open houses are sometimes hosted, while Betsy always seeks feedback and follow-up Angi Morgan, from agents and the homeowners in question, ensuring allF

For more information about please call 615-796-4390, or email Angi@johnCjones.com

For more information about Jennifer Gilchrest, please call 405-414-5089 or email JenniferGilchrest@kw.com

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5 Steps to Achieve Long Term Success as a Real Estate Agent Real Estate can have a reputation as an industry with a high turnover as far as agents go. Being a ‘people person’ with an entrepreneurial spirit is a great start, but what some fail to realize when starting out is that this is a business. So if you’re in it for the long haul, you need to treat it that way. Here are some key steps you need to take to have your own successful real estate business.

1

FIND A MENTOR

Once you get your license and hang your sign at a Brokerage, you’ll find that you’re pretty much on your own. That’s why it’s a good idea for new agents to find a large Brokerage that offers in-house training and mentorship or a boutique brokerage that has more seasoned agents who are eager to take a new agent under their wing. Being able to shadow a more experienced agent is invaluable and allows you to mirror what you’ve seen and run through the numerous scenarios that will arise when you are representing a client.

2

CONTINUOUS TRAINING

This is a business that is constantly changing, so it’s smart to always stay ahead of the curve when it comes to new technological innovations and systems. There are even numerous online resources, where you can keep up on your trade, such as blogs by top producing agents that are a treasure trove of information. A confident agent with an in-depth knowledge of the business is one that easily earns the trust of their client, leading to repeat and referral business, which will be the bread and butter of your business.

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3

BUILD A STRONG ONLINE PRESENCE

Yes, referrals are the basis of your business, but building a strong online presence and marketing yourself to new clients is also important, especially before you’ve built up a strong referral base. Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, and other social media tools are great way to get leads both for your listings and for yourself. It’s even a good idea to buy several domain names when you start, so that when you’re ready to build a website, you can ensure you have the names you want. Obviously the internet is also a great resource to find leads. Before you find a niche for yourself, it’s important to take advantage of every avenue there is. A lot of successful agents started off doing things no one else wanted to take on like foreclosures, expired listings or lower priced homes. But as you’ll find out, helping those who need it most is a great way to build a loyal client base, that will not only come back to you when they are ready to sell or buy again, but will be your biggest cheerleaders when it comes to referring you to friends and family.

4

BUILD A SOLID FOUNDATION

5

SET GOALS

One thing you’ll find in this business is that doing a lot of work up top, will lead to a more successful outcome down the road. That goes for marketing plans for your listings, as well as your business as a whole. It might not be the fun part, but it will allow you to one day focus on what you do best, dealing with your clients. Set up your CRM and the other systems you want to use from the get go. Getting these things established before you’re hopefully a busy agent is the best time to really learn them and decide what’s best for you.

Once you build a strong foundation and are establishing your client base, it’s important to continually set goals that help you implement your business strategy. You can even invest in a real estate coach if you need someone to hold you accountable. It’s also important to constantly reevaluate what you’re doing. Set up a monthly audit, where you go over what is and what isn’t working. As we mentioned above, this is a fluid business and things are constantly changing, the same can be said of your business. What worked a year ago, might be losing you money as your business grows.

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MICHAEL ST. JEAN Michael St. Jean just might be more in the business of community building and economic development than real estate sales. That’s because, in the Hamilton, Ontario, region his team represents, he has become a force for good, promoting advancement of the city and its surroundings, which are experiencing an astounding revival. “We also do some work in the Niagara region of Southeast Ontario, but Hamilton is our epicenter,” says Michael, who grew up in a real estate family and entered real estate more than 11 years ago. After quickly outgrowing a major brokerage, he began building his innovative, privately owned brokerage. Given its formal mission of “Helping Hamilton Grow,” St. Jean Realty has branded itself as a business that is supporting the transformation of this former steel-making city. After steel production moved largely overseas in the 1980s and Hamilton underwent a long stagnation, the city has seen a dramatic turnaround in the past decade. “Hamilton has diversified its economy into the health, sciences and education fields and we really have taken control of our destiny, moving forward in some really amazing ways,” explains Michael. In addition to helping people buy, sell and invest in real estate, St. Jean Realty is leading the call to continue improving life in Hamilton. And they are succeeding. “Whether it’s helping a senior citizen size down, helping a first time buyer get their home or assisting someone who’s coming to Hamilton from another part of Ontario, our greater mission, ultimately, is to help Hamilton grow,” he says. “We also do a lot of development work on my team; we have several existing projects already and a lot coming over next few years.” The team has been at the ground level of change in Hamilton and each member is proud to be moving forward with projects that are “changing the game” in their city.

Their ability to affect change is the result of fine-tuned processes, systems and organizational operations. “We are very structured in the way we work,” says Michael. “We have processes for everything from A to Z, which means when we take on new agents, we train them and provide them with the support systems of a world-class brokerage.” The company’s systematic processes are the foundation on which the entire business is built, with each uniquely talented team member sharing common goals. From widespread yet highly targeted listing marketing to automated but personalized communication and inventive ways of connecting with the community, St. Jean Realty is well-known across Hamilton. “We have a weekly email newsletter that’s packed with useful content on what’s happening in the community, with the team and with any developments or listings,” says Michael. “We also do targeted social media blasts of information and content with advertising and retargeting and we even do a lot with radio, TV, and a large outdoor billboard campaign.” Their mission is top-of mind within Hamilton as clients hear, see and witness their locally presence. For Michael, the joy of real estate lies in his company’s ability both to help individuals and a changing community; helping individuals’ goals while simultaneously helping a city. “Even our community involvement has been centered around selling the city itself,” he says. “We’re been promoting the city to people from other areas; we’ve taken the torch and are running with it as the people who are responsible for communicating why this is an amazing place to live, work and play.” By ushering in new investment that advances Hamilton, St. Jean Realty is realizing its goals and helping others do the same. “We’re still in the very early innings of our team and our business,” says Michael, who is expanding his resale residential team while increasing his development sales business. “We are going to be working on some of the greatest projects Hamilton has ever seen.” The future, by extension, looks incredibly bright for both St. Jean Realty and for Hamilton.

To learn more about Michael St. Jean, visit stjeanrealty.com or go to his Facebook page, email michael@stjeanrealty.com or call 1.844.484.SOLD www.

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Gerry G. Gatto is proud to congratulate

Michael St. Jean

on being featured for Canada in Top Agent Magazine!

Gerry G. Gatto Professional Corporation 905-304-5535 EXT 227 www.gattolaw.ca 71 Wilson Street E. | Ancaster, Ontario, L9G 2B3

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Butler Mortgage Inc. is proud to congratulate

Michael St. Jean

on being featured for Canada in Top Agent Magazine!

Butler Mortgage Inc. | FSCO Lic. #12118

T: 905-569-8326 or 1-888-684-8326 | F: 647-499-4442 daniel.patton@butlermortgages.com #1 Mortgage Brokerage in 2017 8

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A Step-by-Step Guide to

Converting Internet Leads to Real Life Sales In the era of apps, instantaneous social platforms, and text messaging, it’s little surprise that the modern homebuyer begins his or her search for real estate representation online. Even if you’ve got a top-notch website or an influential social media presence, how do you connect with web surfers who have yet to commit to the services you offer? Take a look below to learn a few key techniques to bridge the gap between digital interest and real-world sales. Top Agent Magazine

RESPONSIVENESS IS KEY Like it or not, our digital culture relishes immediacy and instant gratification. With that in mind, be sure to stay on top of online interest forms, e-mails, or newsletter signups. Don’t let an online lead go to waste by taking too long to engage and follow-up. Things move fast, and it’s easy for potential clientele to forget which websites they’ve visited. Even if your lead isn’t ready to commit then and there, you demonstrate your

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Mastering the fundamentals of digital communication is the first step to converting digital interest into concrete business. accessibility and attentiveness by following up swiftly—a characteristic anyone would seek in an agent or lender.

ENGAGE WITH OPEN-ENDED CONVERSATION When online back-and-forth goes stale, communication drops off quickly. If you’re following up via e-mail, social media, or text, be sure to keep topics focused squarely on the potential client. Ask open-ended questions to give your lead the opportunity to loosen up and engage on a personal level. There’s no better way to cement a digital lead than to take a pointed interest in the specifics of their situation. Doing so transforms the impersonal invisibility of the internet into a true connection.

GIVE ADDED VALUE Plenty of businesses send impersonal, automated messages in response to an online inquiry, but establishing a true connection may mean providing your lead with something of value. Perhaps you’re forwarding a property for sale that fits the interests of your lead, or a relevant article, or maybe you take the time to send a personal message—demonstrable value and a personal touch separate your follow-up response from spam. Other ideas to consider when 10

adding value to your follow-up technique: incorporate area promotions and access to local events, make a date for coffee, or offer a brief consultation free of charge to make the first move.

DON’T STOP MAKING CONTACT If you don’t connect with your internet lead right off the bat—don’t be discouraged. It often takes multiple tries before a follow-up interaction sticks. Folks are busy and frequently flooded with e-mail blasts and junk mail. A lead may not engage without a little prodding that shows you’re committed to their business. Remember: it’s the squeaky wheel that gets the grease. Digital leads don’t have to be difficult to capture. The internet plays a powerful role in funneling modern clientele your way, but in order to take full advantage of the web’s reach, you’ll need to tailor your follow-up technique. Mastering the fundamentals of digital communication is the first step to converting digital interest into concrete business. Keep these tips top-of-mind as you build your online presence and mine the vast world wide web for an endless wealth of clientele. Earning a command of digital lead conversion is the surest way to bolster your business in the ever-evolving digital era.

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ZACHARY K. UNDERWOOD

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ZACHARY K. UNDERWOOD Zachary K. Underwood found his career in real estate while he was looking for a side job. “I was in business school in 2009/2010 and the housing market was bad and the job market was terrible,” he says. “I figured the best way to get a job out of school would be to already have some experience, and I thought that I wouldn’t have any trouble getting a commission-based job. I got my real estate license on weekends 12 Copyright Top Agent Magazine

while in college, and then once I actually started working in real estate I found myself addicted to it.” Getting started so early allowed Zachary to become the youngest licensed broker in Ohio - he was 24 at the time. Part of what hooked Zachary was the prospect of making a difference in people’s lives. “I love helping people,” he says. “I especially Top Agent Magazine


love helping people get into homes who have never owned a home before. That’s a big part of what we do.” At Trio Ohio Realty Zachary serves Columbiana, Mahoning and Jefferson Counties, which are largely lower income areas. “Our area has a lot of Section 8 and HUD housing,” he says. Top Agent Magazine

“It’s wonderful to see people get out of there, to get out on their own and take pride in having home ownership. I would say 65, 70 percent of our business is with first time home buyers.” Working with first time buyers means Zachary wants to make the process as easy as possible, and to do that he’s created personal portals for 13 Copyright Top Agent Magazine


his clients. “We listen to our clients and hear what they’re looking for,” he says. “What school districts, what geographic areas they want, and then rather than having them go through Zillow or a bunch of home search websites we create a personal portal so the information comes to them when there’s a listing in their interest area. They love being the first to know that something is on the market, rather than having to keep checking the listings.” Copyright Top Agent Magazine 14

That speed informs Zachary’s approach to business. “In today’s day and age people want service right now,” he says. “You have to call them back within a half hour. So the biggest priority for me is just keeping in touch with clients. I keep everything transparent with them, and when an issue comes up I let them know. But I also let them know to not be stressed - the issue will be handled, and handled quickly.” Top Agent Magazine


When he’s not putting people in their first home, Zachary loves skiing and spending time with his family, but he also loves giving back to the community. “I’m the acting president of the Beaver Creek Area Association of Realtors®,” he says. “And between there and Tri Ohio Realty we do Top Agent Magazine

a lot of donation-based work, especially with volunteer fire departments. Our local volunteer fire departments don’t get funded as well as they could, so we like to help them out. We also give to Habitat for Humanity, which rehabs homes in the local area.” Copyright Top Agent Magazine 15


Zachary is looking to a future that is more online and that gives him more tools to support his agents. “We do so much for clients online,” he explains. ”Next I want to make it more seamless for the agent, allow them to have a virtual office. We’re a small office but we’re growing,

and I don’t want to grow too much without having the technology in place to support my new agents - if we have agents who don’t have the tools and support they need, they won’t be able to help our clients. Supporting agents means supporting everyone in the business.”

To find out more about Zachary K. Underwood, visit his website at triohiorealty.com, call 330-853-6738 www.

or email Underwood@BetterHomesUSA.net

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Tips on Being a Good Team Leader Your business is booming, so much in fact, that you’ve finally made the decision to start a team. You’ve made sure it’s financially feasible, and you’ve found the right people, but there is still one other component of a successful team. And that’s an effective leader. It’s your job to not only generate business, but to motivate your team, which in turn increase productivity. Here are a few simple tips on being a good team leader. 1. Evaluate each team member, making sure to utilize their strengths Hiring the right people is one of the first steps in creating a successful team, but once you have those people it’s really Top Agent Magazine

important to figure out where they best fit into the operation. Having every team member be an ‘expert’ in their part of the process leads to seamless transactions and a business that runs like a well-oiled machine. 17


Of course it’s also important to create a supportive atmosphere that allows team members to stretch beyond their comfort zones, under your guidance. It’s to the whole team’s advantage when people take initiatives to up their game by taking additional training or mastering a new and innovative technology that can improve productivity. The key is to constantly evaluate not only your systems but the people running them. It’s your job as a leader to encourage that personal growth while making sure to always protect against any major misfires. Which leads us to… 2. Always reevaluate what is and isn’t working It’s a good idea to have a weekly meeting where the whole team can convene and go over any snags they may have hit in the systems that you developed when starting your team. Your team is in the trenches with you and since everyone probably focuses on a different aspect of the transaction, it’s important to make sure things are working on every level. Make sure copious notes are taken during these meetings so you have a track record of what was suggested, as well as a history of things that may have been tried and the results. Another good thing to focus on in these meetings is goal setting. Set weekly and monthly goals, and use the meetings to discuss what’s being done or needs to be done to meet them. When goals are met, it’s a great bonding experience for everyone. When they aren’t, it’s a moment to learn how you can do better in the future. 18

Don’t forget to always take in what you can do to be a better team leader as well. 3. Stay connected and in communication These are your team members! There’s more to that than just a label. Be connected to them on a daily basis. Clear, open and honest communication is important on a busy team and that’s much easier if you actually like and trust your co-workers. Sure you want to succeed for yourself, but knowing that other people you respect are counting on you, is an additional motivating factor, that is certain to lead to everyone going above and beyond creating a wildly successful business. 4. Be inspiring and supportive If you’re enthusiastic about what you’re doing, it really will be infectious. Encourage innovation and creativity. Yes, systems and consistency are great but don’t let your team get in a rut either. Support their individual careers, always encourage them to go for more, let them rely on you for mentorship. If they sense that you want each member to succeed as much as you have, you won’t find more loyal employees. And perhaps most importantly focus on what’s being done right. Don’t be the boss that just points out things they don’t like. Let them know when they’ve done an amazing job and be specific about what it is. Make them feel valued and they will become a valuable asset to you and your business. Top Agent Magazine


Alexandra McCauley

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ALEXANDRA McCAULEY How did Alex McCauley quickly become one of the most trusted and referred agents in Houston? Alex never thought she’d leave her native California, but when she fell in love with a Texan, she moved to the Lone Star State in 2013. She’d grown up watching her uncle run a successful real estate appraisal business and always had an interest in the industry. So when she arrived in Texas, she studied for her license. After her receiving her license, she kept her full-time sales job for a yearbook company while building her real estate business. “My yearbook sales job involved travel in the area, so it helped me get a feel for the different areas of the city. It helped me in real estate because anytime someone wanted to see something anywhere I had a pretty good idea of school districts and things that were important to families,” she explains. She went full-time with Keller Williams in 2018 and serves primarily the inner loop of Houston with a focus on Oak Forest—where she lives, the Heights, Cottage Grove, Montrose, Eado, Rice Military, Memorial, and Spring Branch, as well as Conroe, the Woodlands, and Spring.

negotiating contracts. “I’ve been in a lot of multiple bid situations where we always win the house,” she says with her characteristic smile. Her clients remember that working with her was a pleasant, easy, low pressure experience. What’s Alex’s favorite part of the job? “It’s the people!” she says. “I enjoy spending time with my clients. I enjoy taking them out to look at properties and getting to know them. I’ve found my niche and I can’t imagine doing anything else. I wake up enjoying what I’m doing and it’s fun. It doesn’t really feel like work.” Through Keller Williams, she volunteers to feed the homeless, provide clothes for children in need, and support survivors of Hurricane Harvey. In her free time, she loves to relieve stress by working out and running, and she’s currently training for Chevron Houston Marathon. She and her husband have a French bulldog puppy named Astro (in honor of the Houston Astros) who is a handful! For the future, Alex plans to continue growing her business while maintaining her personalized, boutique service.

Already an impressive 80% of her business comes from repeat and referral clients. What sets Alex apart from other Realtors in her area? “I truly enjoy working with my clients,” she explains. “I made the decision early on that if I felt like it wasn’t the right fit, I’d would pass a client on to someone else. I want to make sure it’s an enjoyable process for both parties.” Alex has grown her business organically by meeting people at open houses who click with her positive energy. “I’ve been blessed to meet people who are like minded and we work really well together,” she says. Her clients have such a fantastic experience with Alex that they are eager to refer her to friends and family. To stay in touch with past clients, Alex sends out a helpful video once a month, reaches out by social media, or just picks up the phone to say hello. Once a year she hosts a client appreciation happy hour in the city. “We just did a fun one at Cars and Coffee in Houston,” she says. She also sends personalized holiday cards and gifts to let her clients know she cares. When it comes to marketing listings, Alex understands that most clients begin their search for a home online. “All my marketing really does come from social media,” she explains. Each week, she creates a live video featuring about the listing. This has been an incredibly effective marketing tool that often results in a quick sale at a competitive price. After working with Alex, her clients rave that she’s genuine and personable, but also efficient and considerate of their time. She responds quickly to questions and phone calls and is an expert in 20

To find out more about Alex McCauley, email alexmccauley@kw.com or call (831) 234-4882 Copyright Top Top Agent Agent Magazine Magazine


3 Mind-Bending Philosophies to Expand Your Professional Perspective

Beyond the day-to-day duties that make your business tick, so much of success is derived from the principles you put in place to guide your business. The foundational tenets you subscribe to can make or break your business for the long-term; they not only influence how you complete routine Top Agent Magazine

tasks, but also impact your growth, your ability to manage a team, and what the future might hold. With all that in mind, here are three philosophies to remember as you strategize your professional life—whether you’re mapping your monthly goals or creating an overarching plan for growth.

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1

Treat Your Business Like a Business

One of the perks of working in real estate is that you’re often able to create and manage your own schedule and volume, but that doesn’t mean you can skimp on the technical details of being your own boss. No real estate professional worth his or her salt would forgo empowering tools like a business and marketing plan, or spreadsheets to track cash flow and expenses, or regular profit-and-loss statements, or fiscal year budgets and projections. Taking these measures may appear daunting at first— and completing them will certainly require discipline and a learning curve—but harnessing valuable data and information can intelligently inform your professional decisions, strategies, and long-term growth.

2

Achieve a Holistic Understanding

When schedules are busy, it sometimes feels like enough to reach the end of the week’s to-do list. But, if you’re planning on a lasting career built on year-to-year growth, it’s not enough to account for the short-term. By creating daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, yearly, and five-year goals, you’re outlining and quantifying your progress. While your quarterly and yearly goals may be clear in your mind, what about five years from now? Perhaps you’d like to add to your designations, or incorporate a new team member, or add an additional branch. No matter how you envision your profes22

sional future, the first order of business is to create a timeline. Once you have a clear deadline in mind, it’s far easier to build out the steps and calendar necessary to achieve your goals.

3 Specificity is Empowering While you may have a general sense of where you’d like to see your business go in the next few months or years, it’s hard to work toward or attain a goal that’s abstract. To make the most of your time and efforts, you must identify and understand precisely what you’re aiming toward. For instance, instead of planning to add volume to your enterprise, outline a specific, attainable number to work toward. Or, if you’d like to add an administrative staff in the years to come, consider the details of this decision—the money it would take, the type of people you’d want to hire, how many hours per week they’d work, what tasks they would complete, etc. Adding hard details to your goals not only makes them more realistic, but progress is more easily made when you have specific items you can cross off your to-do list along the way. While there are no 100% fool-proof or guaranteed routes to success, shifting your mindset from the present and the abstract, to the specific and the long-term can have a major impact on your chances of success. Instead of dreaming of being more productive or successful, do yourself a favor and craft a gameplan you can bank on.

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JEREMY CUPP How did Jeremy Cupp become one of the most well respected agents in Northwest Arkansas? Jeremy had a successful career selling phonebook ads when his company placed him in Bentonville. He began selling ads to Realtors, who recognized he had the makings of a great agent. In 2013, they encouraged him to study for his license and by 2014 he was selling real estate full time. He completed over $3.5 million in transactions in his first year in the industry and has been growing his business ever since. He now leads 12 Stones Realty Group—named from a story in the book of Joshua about God’s promise. His team of ten agents serves Northwest Arkansas, which has more Fortune 500 companies than any other area in the country. “People move here from all over the world,” Jeremy says. “It’s kind of a melting pot.” Bentonville hosts a film festival each May with many A-list actors in attendance. Nearby Beaver Lake and Hobbs State Park offer opportunities for boating, fishing, hiking, and camping. An impressive seventy percent of Jeremy’s business comes from repeat and referral clients. What keeps his clients coming back and eager to spread the word about Jeremy? His customer service is the best in Northwest Arkansas. He provides ample information for people relocating to the area for work. “We have a great relocation package to educate people about the area, as well as about the process of buying.” Jeremy takes the time to teach clients about each step of the transaction process. He has great communication skills and responds promptly to any questions. From 1999 to 2004 he served as a machine gunner for the Marine Corps. During

his service, he developed an attention to detail and a strong work ethic he brings to his career as an agent. Jeremy understands that in today’s market, most buyers begin their search for a home online. To ensure each listing looks its best, Jeremy and his team hire stagers and professional photographers, as well as high quality vendors to complete any needed improvements. For his luxury listings, he uses Lux Virtual Touring, which provides advertising nationally and world-wide, as well as single property websites. He utilizes Listing Booster to share information with potential buyers, who receive a virtual tour link and information on area schools. The result of this thorough marketing approach is often a quick sale at a competitive price. After working with Jeremy, his clients remember not just his excellent service and expertise, but also his good nature, sense of humor and ability to make the process fun. His favorite part of the job is meeting new people every day. To give back to the community, he volunteers with Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) as an advocate for foster children. He’s a member of the American Legion where he focuses on giving back to other veterans. In his free time, he loves to spend time with his family, traveling, bowling, and mountain biking on the local trails. His 19 year old daughter, Lexie, is currently taking classes to obtain her real estate license. “For the future, I’m hoping to make it a family business!” Jeremy says. Now that’s a worthy goal that will surely benefit his clients and community!

To find out more about Jeremy Cupp, contact him via email at jeremy@12stonesnwa.com or by phone at (479) 340-4744. You can also check him out online at jeremycupp.realtor www.

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Modern Email Etiquette for Today’s Agents In today’s tech-forward culture, consumers are constantly inundated with promotional emails, alerts, invites, and social media blasts. As a real estate agent or a loan officer, how do you stand apart from the noise? What’s more, how do you stay relevant in a digital landscape that’s constantly changing? For starters, there are a few timeless techniques you can apply to up your skillset when it comes email and digital communication: asking questions that Top Agent Magazine

inspire conversation, politeness, and following up regularly—to name a few. Likewise, there are surely new tricks you can add to your arsenal to stay ahead of the curve. Let’s outline a few ways you can refine and update your email etiquette to compete in today’s virtual marketplace.

Make your subject line count Too often, we labor over the content of our emails without giving much thought to subject lines.

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Though email is no longer a new-fangled invention, there are certainly ways you can modernize its use and take advantage of its ubiquity. However, these little headlines can go a long way in luring the consumer to open your email and ultimately click through to your website in search for your services. An enticing subject line should be short and sweet, ideally less than fifty characters. You might also include the name of the recipient, and be up front (though concise) about the subject matter of your message. Remember: the first thing a client will see is your name and subject line—be sure to make this prime real estate shine.

Think mobile Research tells us that 79% of Americans check their phones within fifteen minutes of waking up. In fact, much of modern day correspondence occurs by smartphone. Accordingly, you’ll want to account for email readability on a mobile phone. For instance, incorporating paragraph breaks for each new thought allows information to be parceled out in a palatable way for readers utilizing small screens. Also, any sort of graphic flair or links within your email should be shortened and streamlined for mobile consumption. Send yourself an email every now and again and access it from your phone—you’ll be able to double-check that all the elements of your emails are working well on a mobile platform.

Incorporate email tools There are excellent tools out there to enhance your email experience. With just a quick download, 26

you can add spellcheck, a URL address shortening feature, or a delay option that holds emails for thirty seconds before they’re sent. Think about the possibilities! Haven’t you sent an email without including the attachment you intended, or realizing you sent correspondence to the wrong client? If that’s the case, a delay feature can help you save face and build in a window for error— just in case. Regardless of which tools speak to your email habits, there are plenty of add-ons out there that can revamp your digital correspondence style.

Use email to maximize your online presence These days, there are plenty of ways to communicate—email, text, phone, apps, and social media. When you interact through email, consider it an opportunity to invite your client to follow you elsewhere online. Ensure that your email signature includes unobtrusive, streamlined links to your social media accounts, professional website, or review page. This will build in an opportunity for clients to engage with your brand, and you may even add an online follower for the long term. Though email is no longer a new-fangled invention, there are certainly ways you can modernize its use and take advantage of its ubiquity. Keep these approaches in mind as you reenergize your email technique and fortify your communication in the digital era.

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DOUG DILLING Top Agent Doug Dilling – Lead of The Doug Dilling Team at United Real Estate Indianapolis – is a no-nonsense, straight-shooting Realtor who has spent nearly two decades building his real estate knowledge base. Deeply committed to providing his clients with the utmost in customer service, Doug and his team have been consistently recognized as a national top-selling and top-volume entity by United Real Estate, and their reputation as agents who truly care about their buyers and sellers precedes them. Doug began his journey in real estate in 2001, following a career in Non-Profit Association Management and Fundraising. “I had spent most of my life in that world,” explains Doug, “and I didn’t want to do that anymore. So I took a two-week intensive education course, got my license, and hit the ground running.” Selling the entire Greater Indianapolis area, Doug’s team consists of three other equally dedicated and knowledgeable agents, each of whom share his client-first, ethical business ethos. Agents Frank Boles, Joe Lackner and Bethany Schultz “all have the same desire to provide a high quality of support to our clients,” says Doug. ”I didn’t set out to form a team, but these amazing folks came to me because they saw what I’d accomplished, and were looking for guidance as they began their own careers. So I took them under my wing and showed them the ropes, and they’ve all remained part of the team.” Nearly seventy percent of Doug’s business is based on repeat and referred clients, perhaps the surest sign of a job well done in the highly-competitive real estate industry. “It’s because our approach is not cookie-cutter, one-size-fits-all,” says Doug, when asked what might account for the exceptional level loyalty his clients display. “We are truly all about individualized services and support. We really do everything from running errands, to dropping off checks, to staging and everything else. We know our clients have busy schedules, so we’ll do whatever it takes to make it easier for them. We base our own expectations on our

client’s needs and what they are looking for. We truly do work for them. We pay attention to detail, unlike some agents who are just order-takers.” While Doug and his team value their clients and the relationships they form with them, they are vigilant in their follow up, making sure that they do not overwhelm or annoy their clients with incessant emails or physical mailings. “We use a very soft touch,” explains Doug. “We don’t badger our past clients or fill their inboxes with trash.” Instead, they prefer to remain in contact via their shared community. “We’ll see them in church, in professional settings or at gatherings of associations we belong to,” he says. “We will do an annual holiday mailing, and a couple of other mailings throughout the year. Our clients know we’re here for them, so we’re not going to annoy them by constantly reaching out to them.” Members of The Doug Dilling Team are expert marketers as well, ensuring that each and every listing is seen in its best light and by as many potential buyers as possible. High-quality, professional photography is utilized exclusively, and staging advice is provided when necessary. Every member of Doug’s team is committed to giving back to their community, and does so through a variety of ways, including their churches, neighborhood associations and community service boards. When asked about his plans for the future, Doug waxes practical. “I don’t think I have any major changes planned,” he says. “We’re on a really good trajectory.” Left unsaid, but clearly obvious, is his plan to continue providing the unparalleled customer service that has become his calling card. “I love what I do,” he says. “I love helping people, and I love that there’s never a dull moment with this job.”

For more information about Doug Dilling, please call 317-965-1001 or email Doug@DougDilling.com Top Agent Magazine

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JENNIFER GILCHREST Top Agent Jennifer Gilchrest is not only a skilled and knowledgeable Realtor who works hard to help her clients achieve the American Dream of homeownership, but she is also an authentic, genuine and ethical professional who can be trusted to always put her buyers and sellers needs front and center. Working with Keller Williams Green Meadow in Oklahoma City, Jennifer’s steadfast commitment to providing expert real estate advocacy has resulted in a business that is based significantly upon repeat and referred clients, a true sign of excellence in her highly-competitive market. Jennifer’s interest in the world of real estate was ignited about twenty-five years ago, when she purchased her home from two well-respected agents who suggested she come and work for them. “At the time though,” she recalls, “my children were small and I didn’t want to miss out on any memories with them. But when they were grown – and I now have grandchildren – I decided I had enough time to dedicate myself fully to the business.” Jennifer obtained her license in 2016, and hit the ground running, achieving almost immediate success, and is currently ranked among the top five percent of the Central Oklahoma MLS, and seven surrounding Multiple Listings Services. While her office is in South Oklahoma City, Jennifer is willing to travel as far as necessary to assist her clients. “If they want me to take care of them personally,” she says, “then I will drive wherever I they need me to.” “About eighty-five percent of my business is based on repeat clients and referrals,” says Jennifer, and when asked to account for that impressive level of client loyalty, she grows thoughtful for a moment. “I think it’s because they know that I’m a genuine person,” she muses. “I truly take care of them, and I’m very honest with them. I walk them through every step of the process so they are completely aware of the risks and benefits of every decision they make. Educating them is very, very important to me. My fantastic transaction

coordinator in office allows me to be in front of more clients face to face and I am at ease knowing she’s on top of every single detail.” Jennifer sincerely appreciates her clients, past and present, and works hard to maintain the deep bonds she forms with many of them. That appreciation is clearly reciprocated, as best evidenced by the glowing reviews she has received for her services, including this one from Zillow.com: “We interviewed several Realtors before we chose Jennifer. We are very pleased with our decision... Jennifer was amazing to work with! She was always available when we needed her. If she did not know the answer to a question she would research it until she had an answer. No job was too big or too small for her. If we ever buy or sell again we will definitely choose Jennifer.” Expert, thorough marketing also plays a huge role in Jennifer’s continuing success story. In addition to standard methods that take advantage of the internet and social media platforms, Jennifer also employs more personable methods. “I actually do a lot of door knocking,” she says. “On Valentine’s Day, I handed out candy all evening, and door knocking as the Easter Bunny and delivering candy as well.” Newsletters and flyers also ensure that anyone who needs expert guidance knows where to find her. When she’s not working, Jennifer enjoys nothing more than spending time with her husband, their children and their two grandchildren. Church on Sunday as a family is important to them in particular. “Sunday is our family day, when we try to slow down, reconnect and catch up with each other,” she says. Jennifer is also a huge sports fan. “MMA is actually my favorite,” she says with a laugh, “which shocks everyone.” The entire family are also dedicated philanthropists who give back to the community through variety of local charitable organizations. ‘My family’s support of me is off the charts,” says Jennifer. “I have the most loving, supportive family imaginable.” The future looks bright for Jennifer, and her primary plan is to continue growing her business. Her impressive customer service – which has become her calling card – will, of course, remain front and center.

For more information about Jennifer Gilchrest, please call 405-414-5089 or email JenniferGilchrest@kw.com 28

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If it’s good for the soul,

IT’S GOOD FOR THE BUSINESS

Visibility, name recognition and knowing you’re supporting the community that makes your success possible are good reasons to take part in community service. But how is it that some people seem to be able to give time to charities while running their own businesses, managing their own families and households, exercising regularly, attending sporting events and concerts, eating well and sleeping seven or eight hours a night? The truth is, not all agents are able to do everything so easily. But more important is the fact that no one needs to do everything all of the time. The trick is to make sure that, whatever you do holds meaning. REALTORS® and mortgage professionals who seem the most gregarious in their community outreach are those whose giving seems to fill their own souls. When their Top Agent Magazine

volunteer efforts or donations directly impact causes they or their clients care deeply about, “giving back” becomes energizing. Jason O’Quinn of Prime Lending in Dallas Texas, for instance, says that his family’s ongoing work building homes for some of the poorest families in Honduras fills him immeasurably. “It rejuvenates me,” he says. “There’s quite a dichotomy between the houses we build there and the houses we finance here,” he says. “It refocuses me, going from financing $1 million homes in Dallas to physically laying cinderblock for $10,000 homes in Honduras. Everything has more meaning when we sacrificially give of our time, talent and treasure.” The longtime “big picture” for Colorado REALTOR® and property manager, Linda

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Todd, for instance, has included giving back to the community, whether serving as a lead carpenter for Habitat for Humanity, making deliveries for Meals on Wheels, or pitching in for the sake of baseball. And through her lifelong passion for baseball, she harmoniously blended her personal interests, her work and her community service. For many years, she was so involved Little League the local league named a new field after her. “I cried for 3 days after they told me that!” She and her husband also started a scholarship fund for junior college baseball players and serve as a host family for the rookie league of the Colorado Rockies, putting up newly drafted players in their home. For Florida REALTOR® and property manager, Mario Gonzalez, neither his business nor his primary community outreach would exist without the other. A retired U.S. Navy pilot, Mario formed his brokerage, Navy to Navy Homes, when he saw a need for military personnel to find affordable homes to purchase. “We got into it to help, but that led to a full-blown real estate business.” Besides providing opportunities for investment and homeownership, the company donates 35% of every commission to Homes for Heroes, veterans’ groups, or organizations benefiting fire, police, medical organizations, churches and homeless shelters. “We’re small, but we give so much back that we were the top Homes for Heroes company in Florida and

top-five nationwide.” But he does none of this for the attention. His friends may call him the “Humble Hero of Heroes,” but helping is Mario’s passion. “To be such a small business and be the top Homes for Heroes affiliate is mind boggling!” Like Mario, for many, the best service takes place in simple and quiet ways. Illinois REALTOR®, Susie Scheuber, for example, takes a humble approach to giving back. Although she donates a portion of every commission check to the Children’s Miracle Network, she doesn’t discuss this with clients unless they happen to ask. “I do it because I want to and because, to me, giving back is the right thing to do when you’ve been fortunate in business and life,” says Susie. We all know how inertia works; the more energized we get by certain behaviors, the more likely we are to continue those behaviors. For some top agents, community outreach has become such a natural routine of their daily lives that they never find it burdensome. A good way to add community service into your life, therefore, is through the causes that mean the most to you. For starters, consider giving a small donation after closing to the charity of your client’s choosing. Learning the different causes that they care about just might foster a new mission for you.

If you have a unique story to share about how your community outreach has impacted your life and your business or inspired others, click here for consideration in our magazines: www.topagentmagazine.com/nominate-a-real-estate-agent-to-be-featured 30

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MANDY GOLD Mandy Gold - of Haymore Real Estate in Sierra Vista, Arizona – is truly a full-service agent. With a career background that includes work in the insurance, title, appraisal and mortgage lending fields, Mandy is ideally situated to provide her many clients with the very best in comprehensive real estate advocacy. This deep well of industry knowledge, coupled with her effervescent and warm personality, has endeared her to her grateful buyers and sellers, who fully trust her to put their best interests before her own. The reviews Mandy has received for her services perhaps best illustrate the care she takes when guiding her clients through the often-treacherous transaction process. Reads just one: “I cannot rave enough about how amazing Mandy is! After a year on the market and our listing going stale, Mandy was able to revive the excitement around our listing and get our house sold in just one month. She’s a creative, out-of-the box Realtor with a heart of gold. She was so kind in answering all our questions, being extremely responsive, and making the process so easy. Don’t waste your time with anyone else, go see Mandy!” When asked what she personally believes inspires the loyalty that keeps her clients returning and referring others, Mandy grows pensive for a moment before answering. “I think the biggest thing is that I’m very straightforward and very honest,” she muses. “My extensive knowledge of all aspects of real estate really helps, especially when working with first-time home buyers or anyone who doesn’t fully understand the entire process. I can walk them through all sides of it and make sure they know what’s going on.” Mandy’s outgoing, affable personality also inspires exceptional goodwill. “I tend to become friends with almost every client I work with,” she says. “I have clients who have relocated here because they’re in the military and they have no friends here yet, so they’ve put me down as the emergency contact at their kid’s schools.”

One aspect of her job that Mandy takes particular pride in is her affiliation with the Homes for Heroes program, which has helped local Military (active, reserve and veterans), Firefighters, EMS, Law Enforcement, Healthcare Professionals and Teachers save a significant amount of money when purchasing a home. “It’s kind of my driving force right now,” she enthuses. “It’s a great program, and it lets them know that they’re appreciated for their selflessness.” Perhaps the most common complaint heard about real estate agents is poor communication, and there are innumerable buyers and sellers who lose out on deals while waiting for return phone calls. Not so with Mandy, who makes it a priority to return every phone call, email and text as quickly as possible. “My buyers and sellers know they can always reach me, and they can always get fast answers to any questions they might have,” she says. While the financial rewards of a career in real estate are not easily discounted, it’s the more personal side of the business that provides Mandy with the most job satisfaction. “I love being able to call my clients to say, ‘congratulations, let me bring you the keys to your new house,’” she says. “At the end point of the transaction, they’re usually very happy, and I think that’s the most rewarding aspect of what I do.” When she’s not working, Mandy enjoys spending time with her husband and their four children, and encouraging in their after-school activities. She also coaches local youth with dancing and baton twirling. Mandy, a true entrepreneur, also owns a spray tanning business that keeps her occupied during those rare hours she isn’t working with buyers and sellers. Mandy’s future looks as bright as her past, and her goal is to grow her business while enhancing and growing her already-exceptional reputation as a Realtor who provides the very best customer service available.

For more information about Mandy Gold, please call 520-508-4855 or email RealtorMandy@outlook.com Top Agent Magazine

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DOMINIC LeSIEUR With a commitment to his clients and a true passion for real estate, Dominic LeSieur has made great strides in the Outaouais region of Canada. In 2018, he placed 31st in production out of 3,169 brokers in all of Quebec at RE/MAX, and 3rd in Outaouais. He also made the RE/MAX Hall of Fame 1 Million in less than five years, and placed 2nd for the number of transactions at RE/MAX Vision in 2018. It has clearly been a busy couple of years for Dominic, but he is showing no signs of slowing down. Real estate has been a part of his life for many years. “I first started a real estate marketing business called Visit 360 at 21 years old. I managed and developed that company for 10 years while buying several properties to renovate,” Dominic explains. “I have had a passion for the field since I was very young, and I always knew I would be an entrepreneur.” He’s now been a broker for five years, with 75 percent of his business based on repeat clients and referrals. This high rate is no doubt due to his client-first mentality. “I think the most important thing about the current market is that, as a broker, we have to really always give our 200% to give added value for the client and do a great job of advising and leading them,” he says. For Dominic, there is no other choice than going above and beyond expectations. Understanding that this purchase is one of the largest his clients will ever make, he takes his job seriously, and always wants what is best for them. For his buyers, he guides them through every step, leaving no question unanswered. He provides the same

treatment to his sellers, while also taking high quality photos and ensuring the property looks its best. After the transaction is over, clients spread the word about his service. One recently said, “In a difficult time, Dominic knew how to listen and help me in all the steps to SELL and BUY quickly! Very professional and attentive!” Another wrote, “Dominic SOLD our property FAST and we found the perfect home for us! We are MORE than satisfied!” Although Dominic is constantly working, he makes sure to maintain a balance. He gives back his time and resources to various organizations through RE/MAX, including Opération Enfant Soleil, a non-profit which raises funds to help sick children in the Quebec province. RE/MAX has raised more than $23.7 million to support the development of quality pediatrics for children in Quebec since the beginning of this collaboration. Dominic also enjoys spending time with his family, including his girlfriend and their 18-month-old daughter. “I am proud that while succeeding in my work I am able to manage and maintain a good balance within the different spheres of my life,” he explains. As Dominic looks towards the future, he is eager to continue investing in real estate. He currently owns 20 properties, and wants to acquire 15 more within the next two years. Dominic also wants to continue growing his business as a broker. “I will do that by always giving the best service to my clients while staying informed and well-trained.”

For more information about Dominic LeSieur, please call 819-930-1191 or email dolesieur@hotmail.com 32

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How To Overcome Your Workplace Fears Fear is something that can help protect us from danger, but it is also something that can be a hindrance to us in our lives, especially when it keeps us from potentially thriving and growing as a person. This is especially true in the workplace. Here’ a look at some proven ways to overcome common workplace fears.

your head, what exactly you’re feeling and why, it can help deflate the fear. Think of it as releasing some of the fear into the ether. Yes, you’ll still be nervous about your presentation, but a lot of what was holding you back is gone. You’ll feel lighter, and hopefully have just enough butterflies to make your soar.

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Really owning the emotions that are putting you in a place of fear, is the first step. By just naming it and then talking it out in

Nothing can make you feel more isolated than going down the path of “This is something that only happens to me.” Trust me,

ASSESS THE FEELINGS BEHIND THE FEAR

TALK ABOUT YOUR FEARS WITH A TRUSTED CO-WORKER

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it doesn’t, and you might be surprised to find out that some people have had it even worse. Talking to someone you trust and admire, hearing their own fear horror stories and how they overcame them, will help normalize what you’re feeling. Releasing yourself from the idea that it’s something about you, will be an enormous relief.

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THINK OF THE WORST CASE SCENARIO

Although it might seem counter-productive, truly assessing what the worse outcome of the situation you’re afraid of serves two purposes. It might lead you to realize the worst case scenario isn’t that bad after all. Of course it could also lead you to a really uncomfortable thought, you could lose your job. As bad as that is, it also gives you an opportunity to start focusing on what really matters, and how you might grow from the experience and possibly end up better off. Countless people in their dream jobs now, were once fired and thought it was the end of the world. Hopefully, that won’t happen to you, but learning to have confidence in your abilities to always find a way, will be a great tool in overcoming fears.

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COMPARTMENTALIZE

If you’re a super-organized type, you might try actually setting aside time in your day to focus on your fears. It might seem odd, but it will let you NOT focus on your fears during the other hours of your day. Think of it as a task, you aren’t just sitting there worrying, 34

Start thinking of fears as challenges. As scary as it might seem to face them, for the most part they are things that can be fixed.

you’re taking in your fears and figuring out ways to overcome them.

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START THINKING OF YOUR FEARS AS OPPORTUNITY FOR GROWTH

Start thinking of fears as challenges. As scary as it might seem to face them, for the most part they are things that can be fixed. A lot of fear is based on inexperience which leads to a lack of confidence. A common fear is workplace evaluations. Instead of looking at it as hearing everything that is wrong about you, think of it as an opportunity to see where you can improve. Going into it with a positive attitude rather than a defensive posture, will make the whole thing better for both parties. Overcoming fears is oftentimes about a simple attitude adjustment. Like anything it takes practice, but the results of that practice will lead to a life that you’re able to thrive in both personally and professionally.

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ANGI MORGAN When speaking with Top Agent Angi Morgan – of John Jones Real Estate in Murfreesboro, Tennessee – one is immediately struck by her enthusiasm and her obvious commitment to making sure each and every one of her buyers and sellers is provided with the very best real estate guidance available. While relatively new to the industry, Angi has already distinguished herself as a Realtor who truly cares about her clients, and who always puts their best interests front and center. Angi, the self-professed owner of a “servant’s heart,” spent twenty-five years prior to entering the world of real estate as an elementary school teacher. “One summer,” she recalls, “I did some soul searching and decided to make a huge career change and get my real estate license. The beauty of it is that I still get to educate people, but now I’m teaching them about buying and selling houses.” That was in 2016, and Angi’s exceptional work ethic resulted in a business that boomed nearly from the start, and saw her meeting and exceeding the impressive sales goals she set for herself. In 2018 alone, she closed an incredible sixty-five deals, an accomplishment she is justifiably proud of. Angi’s commitment to service is perhaps best illustrated by an acrostic she utilizes, which exemplifies her approach to working with buyers and sellers: SERVE. “S is for service,” she explains, “E is for educating my clients on the real estate process, R is for relational...I want to be more than your Realtor. V is for the vision I have for the potential of their future and present home, and E is for excellence, which is the only know one way to do things, and that’s the best way.” Angi also points to her former career as a formative experience in her approach to real estate. “For twenty-five years as a teacher, I did a lesson plan every Sunday,” she says, “and those plans were carried out during that week in the classroom. Now, I do the same thing as an agent. I create a plan on Sunday and I execute that plan to the fullest. I’m very goal-oriented. If I commit it to paper, it’s going to happen. I accomplish every goal I set.” Additonally, Angi closely follows the bible verse 1 Peter 4:10 “Use your gifts to SERVE one another.” Angi’s savvy business acumen and commitment to service is perhaps best made evident by this glowing testimonial that can be found on

her business Facebook page: “I have been associated or done business with thousands of Realtors over the last 25 years. I would be hard pressed to find one that is as hardworking and that cares as much for their clients like Angi Morgan. She is a true servant in every sense of the word.” Angi’s commitment to her clients far transcends the closing table, and she not only cherishes the relationships she forms with them, she also works hard to maintain and nurture them. “Being creative goes along with having been a teacher,” she says, and she devises unique, unforgettable ways to stay in touch. “On Election Day, I dropped off red, white and blue cookies that said ‘Angi for President,” she says with a laugh. “Yes, it was a little corny, but they appreciated it.” She also delivers lemon bundt cakes in the summer, and stays in touch regularly via more conventional methods like frequent phone calls, videos, texts and emails. Regardless of the method, Angi manages to stay top-of-mind and appreciated by her past clients. Angi is also very much committed to giving back to the community that has provided her with such immense support and success. She is a Diplomat with Leadership Rutherford, which is a personal development program designed to motivate participants to develop and enhance the quality of their leadership in addressing pertinent community needs. Among many other charitable efforts, she is also extremely active with Candle Wishes, which exists to impact the lives of children in need by making birthday wishes come true, providing essential needs, and sharing the love of Jesus Christ. Additionally, she is Ministry Team Leader of First Impressions at River Oaks Community Church. Angi’s primary goal for the future is to continue the growth of her business, and perhaps adding a few new team members, particularly a buyer’s agent. Most important, however, is her commitment to continuing to provide the amazing customer service that has become synonymous with her name. “Buying or selling a home is one of the biggest decisions someone will possibly ever make,” says Angi. “My passion is to educate and serve them throughout the process.”

For more information about Angi Morgan, please call 615-796-4390, or email Angi@johnCjones.com Top Agent Magazine

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BETSY PICOT Betsy Picot’s legacy in real estate stretches more than forty years and multiple states. Beginning back in Ohio, Betsy had always toyed with the idea of becoming an agent, but never acted on her curiosity until the right opportunity finally aligned. From there, over moves to New York and Michigan, she advanced her career as an agent and as trainer—parlaying her love of teaching as she served as a training director for more than ten years and passed along her insights to a range of agents along the way. Today, Betsy has been based at her Florida office since 2001, where she has built upon her abiding reputation for professionalism, follow-through, and empowering her clientele through market knowledge.

presentations and preparations are up to snuff before and after a listing’s debut.

Under the banner of Watson Realty Corp., Betsy spearheads her work solo, serving clients across the St. Johns County. There, a sizable 70% of her business is driven by repeat and referral—a testament to the lasting connections forged and the results delivered. To account for her working style, Betsy cites personal attention, patience, and a commitment to educating her clients as three of the foremost attributes of her professional philosophy. Accordingly, she nets $10 million in average production yearly. “One of the things I focus on and bring to the table is that I’ve very patient,” Betsy says. “I make sure people understand the process and I realize that all buyers and sellers have their own needs, comfort level, agendas, and pace. My job as an agent is to match those things, and I’ve worked with people from all walks of life and at just about every price point. At the end of the day, the common denominator is that every client has a unique real estate need, and the challenge of my job is to make sure they’re happy.”

As for the future, Betsy intends to stay on her steady course, welcoming organic growth while perfecting the systems that have helped her build her legacy today. “I’ve reached a point where I have a good balance, and my goal is to maintain that balance and let business happen naturally,” she says. Now, with more than forty years of expertise behind her, Betsy Picot considers what she has come to enjoy most about her career as an agent. “I enjoy being able to help people,” she says. “Whether that means finding a home, getting a home sold, or educating someone about the process—I find it fun to work with people and help them reach that next milestone.”

When it comes to the listing process, Betsy is keenly aware of the importance of a first impression. With that in mind, she incorporates the talents of a stager and professional photography to ensure that every property is featured in its finest light. From there, exposure across the leading online listing platforms and local MLS boards ensures a wide-ranging digital audience. In person, Betsy produces high-quality property books for prospective buyers to take home and mull over, complete with relevant information about the home’s county and community. Open houses are sometimes hosted, while Betsy always seeks feedback and follow-up from agents and the homeowners in question, ensuring all 36

While Betsy has refined her real estate approach over four decades of experience and insight, she is also no stranger to moving, training new agents, and acclimatizing to new marketplaces. As such, her adaptability and patience are the surest markers of her success, and she passes along this knowledge and value to the clients she steers. “Above all, what I want my clients to remember about me is that I got the job done in a timely manner, and I did my best to make the transaction as easy and seamless as possible,” she says. Beyond the office, Betsy is active in the St. Johns Golf and Country Club Book Club she helped found, and enjoys exercise, as well as the occasional bout of travel. She also enjoys time spent with her family, especially her grandchildren.

To learn more about Betsy Picot email BPicot@WatsonRealtyCorp.com, visit BPicot.WatsonRealtyCorp.com, or call (904) 891 – 2144 www.

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SOCIAL MEDIA MISTAKES

Real Estate Agents Must Avoid There is perhaps no greater marketing tool for agents these days than having a large presence on social media, but there is more to social media marketing than just opening an account and gaining followers. A lot of agents forget the social part of social media. It’s all about engagement, but it needs to be the right kind of engagement. This can often be the first impression potential clients or industry peers have of you, so make it count. There is no second chance to make a first impression, and that is especially true for real estate agents. Here’s just a few things you want to avoid.

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1 Using it to Vent

Social Media is a great place to complain and commiserate about things, but save that for your personal page. A real estate transaction is already a stressful ordeal, the last thing anyone wants is someone who seems like they’ll bring a negative energy to the process. Even worse? Bad mouthing other Realtors® or listings. You’re selling yourself and your skills, so don’t sell anything that shows you in a bad light. Much like marketing a property, everything you put out should be professional and inviting.

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Lack of Consistent Branding

Yes, social media is about social engagement, but it’s also about creating brand recognition. While you don’t want it to be purely promotional, you are running a business, so create a consistent branding across all social media platforms. If you can afford a professional graphic designer to help you out with this, that’s great. But at the very least, have the same profile pic, cover image and highly visible contact information, across the board. And don’t forget to share links to your other accounts, some people prefer different social media applications.

3Not Posting Enough

It’s good to create a schedule of how many times you’ll be posting per day and to pick times when you might have the most engagement. Don’t over do it, but three posts a day at the right time, tends to be a good goal. There are numerous tools on Facebook, for example, that

can let you see when interactions are the highest. Stick to your schedule and adjust accordingly. It’s also important to not just post your listings. Be a resource for people who follow your page. Post community events, or other informative articles that are relevant to home ownership. Be a page they want to follow even when they aren’t buying or selling a property. They’ll remember you when the time comes.

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Not interacting With Your Followers

It’s called social media for a reason. The more you engage with your followers, the more they see you as a real person, and not just a marketing tool. Not only do you get to know your past clients and potential clients, on Facebook, engagement actually will make your posts seen by more people. So it’s a win/win.

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Not Sharing or Linking to Others

It might not seem like a good idea to not promote the blogs, pages or listings of other people, but it’s not only an excellent way to build goodwill, it will also increase your own presence when they reciprocate. So make a point to share posts and links for local businesses and even the blogs of your peers, if it’s a post that offers valuable insight into an expertise you don’t have. That will encourage them to share your posts and even your listings, which will increase your potential buyer pool. This is another incentive to create your own blog. Unique informative content is always of value, and more likely to be shared than promotional links.

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DJ SERAMUR With extensive experience in the construction field and as an investor, Top Agent DJ Seramur - Broker and Owner of Seramur Properties in Valparaiso, Indiana – is ideally suited to provide expert advocacy to his many buyers and sellers in the Hoosier State. With more than twenty-five years of experience under his belt, DJ’s outstanding reputation as a trustworthy Realtor who is committed to providing exemplary customer service continues to grow with each passing year. DJ’s real estate career began when he was twenty-one years old and attempting to purchase his first home. “This was before the internet,” he explains, “and back then the listings came out in a paperback book. I wanted a copy of that book, but the agent I was working with wouldn’t give it to me.” Frustrated, he decided to become licensed simply to have access to the listing book. After purchasing his home, and after attending Purdue University where he studied Building Construction, he began helping friends purchase their own homes. He then began working in construction while simultaneously selling real estate and purchasing his own multiple investment properties. “Being an investor myself, I’m able to give my clients an idea of what they’re looking at regarding purchase price,” he says, “and being a licensed contractor here in Valparaiso means I’m able to personally help them with repairs on their home before it hits the market.” Currently overseeing a highly-dedicated roster of twelve agents, DJ can boast that his business is based nearly eighty percent on repeat and referred clients, an impressive statistic that makes evident his commitment to customer satisfaction. When asked to account for this impressive loyalty, DJ grows thoughtful for

a moment before replying. “It’s because I’ve taken care of my clients,” he says. “I get calls from them all the time when they’re in a difficult situation, like a divorce, and need to sell their house quickly.” There are other reasons, as well, namely his construction expertise. “I have a list of contractors and sub-contractors that I’ve been using for years and I can always call on someone to help them.” DJ is not adverse to lending a helping hand himself, and can frequently be found personally addressing repair issues when prepping a home prior to listing. Expert, thorough marketing is also an important factor in DJ’s success story. “I’m very hands-on,” he says, when asked how he helps prepare a sellers home. “I take the photographs myself, and I’ll consult with the client regarding any staging that is needed. I also make sure that any needed repairs are done in advance, because it’s more expensive if they’re done after the appraisal.” A robust online presence guarantees that his listings are seen by as many potential buyers as possible, and his waiving of industry-standard processing fees for his clients has endeared him to his grateful customers. “The last thing a buyer needs to do is pay another fee,” he explains. “ A lot of time they’re already financially strapped and I’m not going to nickel and dime them.” During those rare moments when he’s not working, DJ enjoys nothing more than spending time with his wife and two young children. He is also a coach for the Valparaiso Soccer Club and Wrestling Club. Additionally, he is active with the local Chamber of Commerce and gives back to his community through his support of local events. When asked about his plans for the future, DJ expresses a desire to continue growing his business, and hiring additional quality agents who share his client-first business ethos. More than anything, however, he plans on continuing to provide the unparalleled service that has become synonymous with his name.

For more information about DJ Seramur, please call 219-241-4039 or email DJ@seramurproperties.com Top Agent Magazine

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