10 Things You Will Learn From My Book, ‘If You Want To Get Rich, Build A Power Niche’

I have mentioned in previous articles that my book, “If You Want to Get Rich, Build a Power Niche,” is being published soon.  The book will have everything I have learned about marketing in the past 11 years, all in one place.  Here are 10 points I will be making in my book — some of which I have written about before.

The Threebies:  These are three things you have to do, and if you do them you will be successful in rainmaking.  If you don’t you will almost certainly fail — and they are so simple:

  •             Get out and about
  •             Be enthusiastic
  •             Knowledge is power (i.e., have a Power Niche to talk about)

The Importance of Being Different:  Most people think you should try be “better,” but that is just a mistake since you are going toe to toe with your competition and the odds are your competition isn’t a pushover.  Indeed, Sun Tzu says that the most difficult battle to win is direct conflict on an open plain.  Instead of being better, be different!

The Importance of Standing Out:  This is so hard for most people.  Most people would rather cut off a finger than take the risk of making of fool of themselves.  So sad… but so fortunate for those who don’t have this fear.  If you don’t stand out you are forgotten and your marketing and rainmaking plans are doomed to failure.  If you stand out then you might fail — true — but also you might succeed.

Failure Shouldn’t Stop You:  The best batters in the world hit about 300.  They fail 70 percent of the time and are delighted with those results, or they should be.  You will probably fail over 90 percent of the time, and instead of being depressed about that you should be ecstatic if you succeed 10 percent of the time.  This twist of the emotional dial is critical to fuel you during the times when things just don’t go the way you want.

Pitching Perfect:  Pitching is not something to wing.  You need to prepare for it, and I tell you exactly how to do it.  As famous coach John Wooden has said, “failing to prepare is preparing to fail,” and he is completely correct.

The Importance of a Power Niche:  Of course this is outlined in my book.  The thing I find perplexing is that no matter how many times I drill this lesson in, over 90 percent of lawyers just can’t understand it or if they do, don’t want to invest the time to pull it off.  But it works, just about all the time.  And I am not “just saying” that — I have a ton of empirical evidence.

Things Not to Do:  There isn’t space here, however, I will bet you that over 90 percent of your current marketing efforts are a complete waste of time.  I will lead you through what not to do.  And then you will have a lot of free time — and money — to focus on what you should do.

Statistics and Math:  I will show you that marketing is all a game of statistics.  You just can’t predict outcomes, no matter how hard you try.  This is both depressing and energizing at the same time.  Since you can’t predict things you might want to give up.  However, at the same time — if you are math person — the lack of predictability leads you to the logical conclusion that the most important thing is getting a lot of “at bats” as you don’t know which balls you will hit, but if you keep swinging you will hit balls.

The Power of Networks:  Indeed, there is nothing more important than growing your network piece by piece. This mixes the foregoing lessons of being out and about with statistics.  You don’t know what will happen but you know if you work within your network things will happen and some of those things will be good things.

All of this and much more will be in my book.  It is being published by Morgan James Publishing and will be released on April 23, 2019, with digital copies available now.

The “Formula” for “Success” in the Real Estate World – This is Exactly What to do – Truly!

Why is it that when I ping the top guy/gal at a real estate company at 11 P.M. on a Saturday night – because I had an idea – she/he responds by 11:15 P.M.?
 
Why is it that many of the top people in the real estate world still cold-call people when they don’t have to do that any more?
 
Why do some people succeed in building incredible franchises and others just don’t?
 
What makes it happen – and what makes it fail to happen?
 
Of course no one really “knows” but I think I have some insight that I will share as The Real Estate Philosopher®.
 
Part of this insight is based on my informal empirical observation of successful people – and people who fail – over many years.
 
And another part of this insight comes from a very interesting book I read recently called The Formula: The Universal Laws of Success, written by Albert-László Barabási, in which he tries, as scientifically as possible, to evaluate what makes people “successful.”  As a side note, I heartily recommend this book as one you might want to give to your kids or cousins or people in their late teens and early twenties.  I wish I had read it then…
 
Anyway, here is what I have come up with…
 
People who succeed instinctively know that their “network” is the key to success or failure.  To be clear, I am not talking about what we all know as typical “networking.”   My point here is related but at heart different than that.  It is that successful people sense that the more other people are aware of what they are up to, the more likely it is that good things will happen.
 
To delve a little deeper, when you think about it, you can’t really predict what will happen in any particular situation.  You start out each year and probably write down some goals.  Then at the end of the year you probably forget to even compare the goals to what actually happened, and if you were to make the comparison you will likely find that whatever you planned for didn’t happen; however, other things happened – hopefully better than the ones you planned for.  Life – and the real estate world – is too unpredictable.
 
So when you think about it, success or failure in the real estate world comes down to a game of statistics.  You don’t know what will happen in any particular situation, but you do know that if you do a lot of things – and you do them well – good things are likely to happen.  I make this point in my book, If You Want to Get Rich, Build a Power Niche, which will come out in April 2019.
 
Successful people figure this statistical theorem out – either intellectually or instinctively – and then act on it.
 
They realize that simple things like:

  • Being super responsive
  • Making 1000% sure that their reputations are fantastic
  • Letting people know what they are doing
  • Being ‘different” so others remember them

Will all help them in growing their network and increasing the – statistical – chances that they will ultimately be successful.
 
In the Formula book I referenced above, Barabási has his first law of success:
 
           “Performance drives success, but when performance can’t be measured, networks drive success”
 
For example, consider your business.  You possibly have a team that is fantastic in every category that you could be evaluated in.  But if there is not a formal measuring scale, how could you “prove” this to a third party?  Even your competitor who is dumb as a post and completely incompetent will likely be saying that it is super-good, right?  If so, all that will matter to a prospective third party is who says they are better better (so to speak).
 
Since you can’t really prove you are “better” to a third party, then if you follow Barabási’s first law, you need to figure out how to effectively use your network to drive success.
 
My saying is similar to Barabási’s and it is:
 
                “It’s the network stupid!”
 
To finish up this article, here is a quick list of things I think someone should do to drive successful long-term performance in the real estate world.  This applies to both organizations and individuals, by the way:

  • Make sure your reputation is super – this is something you hopefully already have done, as if not it is kind of tough to change – actually this is very tough to change as we all know.
  • Get your network started – i.e. the people you know should be aggregated into a single list.
  • Let these people know what you are doing – and especially what you do really well.
  • Be a friendly teammate to others – even your competition – people tend to move around networks – today’s broker is tomorrow’s private equity real estate player with $10B AUM.
  • Be super responsive – don’t blow people off.
  • If you say you are going to do something, do it.
  • Be out and about constantly – in person, by email, however you like to do it — although I have a sense so-called “social media” is less effective.
  • Be different from everyone else so you don’t get forgotten.

And things – good things – will happen to you.  You will not be able to predict them, but they will happen.  And as you keep doing this they will happen more and more.
 
Good luck! 
 
Bruce M. Stachenfeld a/k/a The Real Estate Philosopher®
 
PS:  The core mission of D&S is to “help our clients grow their businesses.”  The foregoing article is along those lines.  If your business is struggling – or doing okay – or doing great – the odds are that we can make it even better.  Feel free to give us a shout.  We don’t charge for that sort of thing.

My Marketing Regrets: You Don’t Need To Have Them

As people go through life and learn more, they often say, “I wish I knew then, what I know now.”   This was true for myself when I started to really dive into marketing.  When I started out in my legal career, I didn’t know anything about marketing and I didn’t think it was worth my time to worry about it when I could be doing excellent legal work.  I couldn’t have been more wrong.

Knowing what I know now about marketing and how effective and necessary it is for a thriving career, I kick myself thinking about all the years I wasted not marketing.  I think of all the contacts I lost touch with, all the opportunities I let slide away, and all the things I have could have learned earlier.

So, I am writing this note to urge you to avoid making the mistakes I did earlier in my career.  If you are working crazy hours and can’t find time to market, consider weaving in even 10 minutes a day for career building.  Or, if you are like a younger Bruce, and you are too pigheaded to listen about marketing and the importance of it, poke your head up for just a minute and consider maybe you might be missing something.

Ultimately, there is nothing that will be more important to your building a successful career than marketing yourself within the industry that you are practicing.

So consider taking the time to not make my regrets yours.  Here are some of my biggest regrets.

I loathed marketing and avoided it as much as I could.  Instead, get excited about it.  Read about it.  Have fun with it.  It really is about as exciting as anything anywhere.

I let a zillion people I met over the years slip away through the sands of time.  Instead, don’t let a contact get away. When a prospect tells you, “Toby we simply cannot hire you, as the boss’s brother is our lawyer.”  Most people then give up, but don’t.  The prospect may not stay there — the boss may change — the boss’s lawyer could retire or go in-house.  All sorts of things can happen.  Letting a contact in your industry wither on the vine is a “Marketing Felony” (my phrase).

I sat in my office and cranked out work.  I never left my office.  It was foolish of me.  Instead, get out and about and hang around with people.  Nothing will happen if you don’t do that.  But of course you already know this from my prior writings.

I never read the real estate industry publications.  Why should I?  I was getting paid to work hours and reading the newspaper isn’t that.  Big mistake!  How could I be useful — really useful — to clients if I am not up on every industry trend so I can be a true business advisor?  Answer is I cannot, and therefore I was useless.  Don’t do this.  Instead, read every single thing you can ever single day so you know a ton about the industry that your clients work in.

And I was so afraid.  So afraid of making a fool of myself.  That I never did anything at all.  Of course I understand this natural emotion.  The way it changed for me was 10 years ago when I saw my career flash before my eyes and concluded that conquering fear of failure was easier than simply flushing my career down the toilet.  So don’t be what I was.  Just go out and try things.  Worst case is you will fail and the sun will still rise on you and your career the next day.

So these are my biggest regrets.  I don’t want to live in the past and beat myself up too much and things are just fine right now; however, I know if I had done the opposite of what I did years ago I would be a notch more successful today.