Have you heard a real estate guru, coach or trainer, tell you that you should “always be selling?”
That you should always have a call to action in every email, card, letter, “thing” you send or do?
That you should always be “on the hunt” for your next sale.
That you should give “gifts” that “remind people you’re a real estate agent?”
That you should always include the “I heart referrals” sticker in and on everything you send?
That closing gifts should be awesome and must have your logo on them so that people never want to get rid of the “gift?”
Let’s just attack this business (and reputation) killing concept head on.
Do YOU want to always be selling? I mean, think about it…
You’re on a date with your significant other and you get the check… the “always be selling” school of thought says hey, pay the check but include your business card and an awesome tip – how’s that for a nice romantic, mindful moment?
You’re spending much needed time with your child… a moment he/she cherishes, and you’re at the checkstand and you make sure to “sell the clerk” by giving them your card or focusing on them, asking them if they know anyone who wants to buy or sell real estate.
You’re at your friend’s birthday party and you bring a gift & card, but make sure to include your business card and even better, you got the gift monogrammed with your logo on it so they “always remember” you every time they use the gift.
See, the “always be selling” mantra is a lie.
It’s a pox on you, your friends and the industry.
It’s an infiltration into our lives, our mindfulness.
In a time when we so desperately need to truly be in the moment, we’re supposed to always be in our business.
We’ve been sold a lie that if we aren’t “always selling” then we’ll never sky rocket our business.
We’ve been told that it’s the only way to live a referral based business… that you must always ask for a referral.
That everything you do, say, give has one singular purpose and that is to get you your next client.
The always be selling mantra is so amazing to me, especially since it’s pushed by some popular industry coaches. The perspective that as a real estate agent, you must “always be selling.”
What a bunch of crap. And even worse, I believed it! I lived it! I hated it! And finally, I proved it wrong.
It always felt wrong in my inmost being.
I didn’t want to always be “on” and “selling.”
I didn’t want to always invade people’s lives with the smarmy concept.
I felt like an unethical network marketer that invites you over for “dinner” and it’s really a “join my business opportunity but I’m not going to tell you the company until you commit” concept.
I felt like the cliche “used car salesman.”
When I expressed those thoughts and feelings to the “always be selling” movement participants, I was told that it was all my mindset, that people needed me to always be selling, that my very business depended on it, that if I wasn’t always selling, I was failing, that I needed to just get over my feelings and take action.
Now don’t get me wrong, I’m a huge advocate for mindset, for taking action regardless of feelings. But I’m also an advocate of being authentic and let me tell you, ignoring how you’re making people feel when you’re on the “always be selling” track is not being authentic. It’s also not my own perspective or imagined perception… it’s real. People put up defenses…
Seriously, do you like to be constantly sold to?
Do you love hanging around people who are constantly saying to you “do you know anyone who wants to buy or sell” or “remember, I heart your referrals.”
Do you feel like someone is genuine when they send you a sales pitch disguised as a birthday card?
Or even better, giving you a “gift” that has their logo and name plastered all over it?
I certainly don’t – so why do we do this? Because some popular speaker says it’s the best way to build a referral business? Because another popular coach built a massive coaching business around the concept?
When did we lose the art of being present? Of being authentic? Of serving? Of giving? Of helping? Of sharing? Of not focusing on scarcity?
Yes, I fully believe that someone who is living out the “always be selling” methodology is living in a scarcity mindset.
There is a fear that if you don’t “ask for the referral” every time, you’ll never get it. That if you aren’t “always reminding people” you are a real estate agent, that they’ll forget and use someone else.
That’s where this is rooted. It’s not rooted in abundance. If it was, there wouldn’t be the insane need to “always be selling.”
There wouldn’t be the need to plaster your name on gifts… which by the way, aren’t a gift. A gift is NOT you promoting yourself. A gift is not about the giver, it’s about the recipient… thought out and specifically chosen for someone, promoting THEM… if you’re going to engrave something on a gift, engrave THEIR name, THEIR anniversary, THEIR special event… not yours. What a crappy way to give a closing gift… “hey, here’s this awesome knife but I’ve ruined it by slapping my logo on it because I KNOW you want to use that knife and show everyone that knife because it’s all about ME, not you and oh by the way, do you know anyone who wants to buy or sell real estate, I heart your referrals.”
I once got such a gift – a great knife (we all know the brand I’m talking about) – and yet, it had the givers logo on it. I wanted to use the knife but also never wanted to use it because I didn’t want the logo constantly on display, it felt like a cheap give away (even though it wasn’t) and I didn’t want to use it when I entertained.
Now don’t get me wrong, I love the giver, I recommend the giver to my clients and I’ve had a couple thousand clients use said giver in their real estate transaction – the knife was superfluous to my relationship with the giver and yet, it still felt cheap and I never wanted to use it. It wasn’t really a gift for me, it was a promotion of them.
Instead of always be selling, I challenge you to stop that, and instead, always be serving.
I challenge you to change your perspective. Don’t always be selling. Focus on always be serving. Create and build relationships with people.
If you’re focused on getting the sale, people know it. They avoid it. They put up their defenses and will not respond or engage with you.
Stop being desperate. Start helping people. People care about themselves. If you want them to care about you and your business, you have to first genuinely care about them. Start giving the best of what you have to give and you’ll see a massive shift in your business.
The funny thing is, that when you are focused on serving, on giving, on helping, and knowing when it’s right to ask (which is less than 25% of the time), your business is going to explode.
Why? Because you’re going to build a sphere of raving fans… people who will fanatically insist others use you, people who will be focused on helping you succeed.
Why? Because you’re focused on making their lives better. You’re serving them. You’re helping them. You’re guiding them in creating, building and living a lifestyle they love. You’re helping them avoid pitfalls and obstacles. You’re giving, you’re serving, and they know it, see it, feel it.