Top Producer Secret To Getting The Most Listings (strategy 10 of 10)

By Craig Forte, Founder - Posted on
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This is the tenth strategy in our series on the 10 Ways Top Agents Get Listings (see strategy # 9 by clicking here).

Today is a great day for you. Why do I say that? Because today I’m going to give you the easiest, most powerful marketing secret (a 100% proven system) for getting more listings and buyers. You’ll be able to grow your production to any level you desire. It’s so simple a 7-year-old could learn it. It works so fast, you’ll be seeing serious results within 2 to 6 months. Best of all, it’ll work in any area, for any agent – AND it will keep working for as long as you practice real estate. So let’s get started… I’ve often said that the most profitable strategies are usually the simplest. This one I can explain to you in 3 simple steps.

Step #1:

Lock your Target in the Crosshairs

I know it sounds trite and cliché, but if you don’t know specifically what you want to achieve, then you’re committed to achieving nothing! So here’s what I want you to do… Write down the Gross Commission Income you want to achieve in the next 12 months as a result of applying this system. Just do it – this is important. As an example, let’s say you want to make $300,000 GCI. Next, write down the average commission you make for each transaction you close. For example, if your average close is $250,000, then a co-broker of 3% means you make $7,500 for every deal. Now remember, this is GROSS Commission. If you want to figure your net, look at last year’s “net” as a percentage of gross and do the math accordingly. To keep things simple, I’m just going to deal with your gross. Now do the math. If you want to make $300,000 GCI, and your average commission is $7,500, then you need to sell 40 homes, right? ($300,000 divided by $7,500 = 40). OK, hold that number in your head – in this case you want to sell 40 homes.

Step #2:

Build Your Personal Real Estate Market

You’re now going to build the most valuable asset of your entire practice – I call it your “power list”. What’s a power list? It’s a list of people who know you or know of you in a positive light: your friends, family, acquaintances, suppliers, strategic alliances, and (most importantly) your past clients and (yes, even…) your prospects. Why do you want to create this list? I could give you 40 great reasons, but here’s one that should get your “AH-HA!!” juices flowing… The NAR report, “Profile of Buyers and Sellers” reveals that 71% (nearly ¾) of all real estate transactions are achieved because the client either 1) already had an existing relationship with the agent (knew them or knew of them in a positive light) OR, 2) the client was referred to the agent from a trusted source. 71% come from just one source: Relationship! Most agents spend their time prospecting in areas with the LOWEST potential for success, completely neglecting the areas with the highest potential. Go to the NAR and get the report and you’ll be shocked: 1% come from cold prospecting, 3% from sign calls, 7% from the internet (yes, only 7%!!), etc., etc. Yet 71% come from THIS source. Does this give you an idea of where you want to be spending your time, energy and money for maximum success? OK…so how do you build a house list? It’s easier than you think.  Check out The 3-STEPS ULTIMATE™ Real Estate Success System by clicking here and I give you ELEVEN easy, ingenious ways to grow your power list. Just go to the site and download (and read) the system, you’ll be thrilled you did. Now…at this point, you might be asking yourself, “How BIG of a list do I need to build?” Good question. I have agents who’ve built their list to over 500 people their first year following my methods (and made big $6-Figure incomes in the process). So let’s figure out how big YOUR list needs to be. Do you remember back in Step #1 you wrote down the # of homes you needed to sell to reach your target? In our example it was 40 homes. Take that number and MULTIPLY it by the average length of home-ownership in your area. For example, nationally, the average time of home ownership is about 6 years. Your local board or MLS may have the number for your local area, but it’s probably a similar number. OK, so take your number from Step #1 and multiply it by the average home ownership time. In our example, take 40 homes and multiply it by 6 and you get 240. This means that, if you build a list of 240 people, 40 of them will sell their home (on average) every year. And remember, this is only direct sales – it does NOT include the referrals they could be sending you. QUESTION: Who’s going to get those deals? Let’s face it, you won’t get all those deals. Some will go FSBO. Some will go to “uncle Harry.” And some will go to another agent who’s just lucky to be there at the time. BUT…the person who’ll get the lion’s share is the agent with the deepest relationship with the homeowner…the agent who’s provided on-going value, who’s demonstrated their competence and professionalism…the agent whose NAME comes first when they think “real estate” (before any other agent). I call this…

Your Personal Market Share™

Personal Market Share™ is the answer to the question: “When people think of real estate, how likely are they to think of YOUR name FIRST, selecting YOU without question and before any other agent comes to mind?” In other words, they’ve already made up their mind about you (not just “top of mind,” but much, much deeper). OK…so we need to adjust the number of people in your house list to account for your Personal Market Share™. (By the way, in your first year you’ll estimate your Personal Market Share™, but in future years you’ll know exactly how many deals came from your House List. I also want you to understand an important dynamic happening here…) It’s very easy to do – simply DIVIDE your list number from above by your “estimated” Personal Market Share™. Now, if you’re an “average” agent who does nothing to nurture their House List and is clueless about “back-end marketing,” your Personal Market Share™ is going to be incredibly LOW – probably around 10 to 20%. Divide your list size (240 in our example) by 20% (I’m being generous) and it turns out you need 1,200 people in your list to get 40 deals from them. Holy Cow, that’s a lot of people!! BUT…if you’re an agent who follows my guidance coming up in Step #3, your Personal Market Share™ could be as high as 80%. So work the math: 240 divided by 80% (.80) is only 300 homeowners. Do you see the difference here? The HIGHER your Personal Market Share™, the FEWER people you need in your house list…the LESS MONEY you spend nurturing the relationship, and the MORE MONEY you “NET” with every transaction – that’s money you put into your pocket! Here’s the simple analysis we just went through, so you can do this for your own practice…
  1. Enter your Target Transactions: (Example: 40)
  2. Enter Average Home Ownership Time: (Example: 6 years)
  3. Multiply #1 x #2 to get House List Size: (40 x 6 = 240)
  4. Enter Your Estimated Personal Market Share™: (Example: 80%)
  5. Divide #3 by #4 to get Total House List Size Required: (Example: 240/.8 = 300)
So how do you maximize your Personal Market Share™ to 80% or higher? You follow my advice in Step #3…

Step #3:

Create a Systemized Relationship-Nurturing System

Did you notice that I said “Relationship Nurturing” and not “stay-in-contact” system? There’s a good reason for it… Nothing differentiates you over any other agent than having a deep, nurturing relationship with your House List. Problem is, most agents completely underestimate the depth and type of contact required to nurture a relationship to the point where you become the stand-out choice. They’re “missing the boat” entirely. So here are 4 elements for creating a “Systemized Relationship Nurturing System”…
#1: Consistent contact is essential. You must commit to making contact every 21 to 30 days. Why? Because for every 30 days you neglect your House List you lose 10% of them. This is where most agents blow it. They think that sending out pumpkin seeds every 6 months, or a calendar at the end of the year, or some kind of recipe card every quarter is going to move the heavens in their direction. Imagine meeting your “soul mate” in life, and following a magical date you said, “How about if I call you in 3 months?” You can’t expect much to happen, can you?? Let’s get serious about this. You need to commit to EVERY month making deep, nurturing, welcomed contact. And the very best kind of contact is either in person, or by direct mail. Yes, I said direct mail – but pay attention, because this is completely different than what you’ve been taught and what most agents do. #2: Get your contact delivered and opened. Answer me honestly: What do you do when you get Junk Mail? You probably answered that you trash it, right? Then why do you think people handle YOUR mail any other way? If you want to get your mail delivered, opened and read, you must make it look PERSONAL – like a birthday card from Aunt Mildred. #3: Create a Captivating Cover Letter. Your contact will consist of a mailing – a short cover letter with something else that’s seen as valuable and engaging to your reader. Let’s talk about the cover letter first… First impressions are lasting – so you don’t want to be some kind of “form letter.” You want something that’s going to capture attention and motivate someone to read what you sent. The first paragraph should open with something that will capture attention and be personal – or you can say something in a headline. For example, “Can You Believe There Are Only 129 More Shopping Days Till Halloween? Or, “Did You Know That Dolphins Sleep with One Eye Open?” You want your headline/opener to capture attention, but be relevant. I write the cover letters for our Service For Life!® direct-response newsletter, and the headline usually refers to an article in the issue. You can see a sample by clicking here. Next, reveal something personal about yourself or your family. Then, to gain credibility, give an interesting statistic about the real estate market to demonstrate your knowledge about the industry. You can say something like, “According to the Phoenix MLS, 854 homes came on the market, while 625 have sold.” Then write a little about what this means to consumers. Your final paragraph will refer your reader to your enclosure – something of value: a newsletter, an article reprint, etc. Finally, you want to personally sign your letter and write a quick personal note – you can also put a P.S. in the letter saying something that will make them smile. #4: Create a Valuable, Engaging, and Action-Motivating Insert Whatever you include with your mailing, it must make a huge impact on your reader. People are busy and don’t want to be bothered with junk mail or blatant pitches. So you need to get under their “advertising radar” and engage them. There are 5 things your insert/content needs to do:
  • First, it needs to be welcoming and perceived as valuable. I recommend using a newsletter with valuable “how-to” consumer articles and resources, such as Service For Life!® ( – see a sample by clicking on the links at the very BOTTOM of the web site home page.
  • Second, it needs to involve and engage the reader. This is done with valuable content as well as involvement devices, such as trivia questions, crossword puzzles, or even humor.
  • Third, it must demonstrate your competence as a real estate professional. So you should also include a short article on topics related to real estate.
  • Fourth, it must bond the reader to you in a very personal way. I like to make the newsletter “look” very personal – as if it came right off your own personal computer. I also use very unique psychological methods such as client recognition, client appreciation, new client welcoming and other techniques.
  • Finally, it must motivate some kind of action on behalf of the reader. Throughout our newsletters we offer special consumer reports about buying or selling, offers for a Maximum Home Value Audit, offers for customized lists of homes for sale perfectly matching their criteria, etc.
If you don’t motivate your reader to ACT in your behalf, your contact will be wasted (along with your money). And no one will act without a self-serving, almost irresistible REASON for acting – an OFFER.

Here’s What Could Happen When You Use this System…

The NAR reports that a “contact” system should take at least 12 months to start working. Our system has been able to cut that time in half. In some cases we’ve had agents get as many as 8 transactions on their first issue. If you’re a new agent, or you’ve never cultivated your House List in the past, you need to be persistent to build your Personal Market Share™. Here’s what’s most likely to happen: Month 1-5 – Not much will happen unless you’ve been working your list in the past and have accumulated some Personal Market Share™ (but things are happening behind the scenes, so keep going). Month 3-8 – You’ll start to hear people talking to you about your contact, and you’ll probably get a deal or two – enough to finance your contact system for the next year or two. You’re starting to make traction, keep it up. Month 6-12 – You’ll start generating consistent transactions from your House List: new transactions, referrals, word of mouth and repeat business. Remember that Personal Market Share™ (and responsiveness) increases over time and cumulative contact – so BE PERSISTENT. This is why I say this strategy is not for “instant gratification” agents, but for agents who are serious about building a real, sustainable business. And the good news is, once your Power List starts spinning off clients, it continues for as long as you cultivate it. If you want to learn more about this system, go to and learn how to send this out in 30-minutes a month. It’ll be the smartest thing you do for your real estate success.  
The strategy above is called the Monthly Direct Response Newsletter™ System and is the easiest way to maximize your referral, word of mouth, and repeat business.

Action Steps

• Use a different type of monthly mailing (mail, email, and social media) to get more listings from referrals, word of mouth, and repeat business • Go to and learn how to send this out in 30-minutes a month

Would you like a ready to use tool you can send every month to get more listings from referrals?  Click here…

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Craig Forte
Craig Forte has helped more than 32,000 real estate professionals over the last 22 years, helping them generate more clients, more referrals and repeats, and grow their production with less stress, time and effort – all by using innovative marketing training, systems and tools.
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