Myers Barnes Blog

Blog Category - New Home Sales Management

How to Retain Your New Home Sales Team

Categories: New Home Sales Management, New Home Sales Training, Uncategorized | Posted: August 3, 2017

Sales managers often ask me, “How do I retain my top talent?” Great question!

We know that other organizations may try to recruit your top talent. So, retaining great talent starts with your recruiting. That begs the question: What are you willing to offer the new team member?

Beyond the salary, the commission, and the basic benefits, what are you offering to new and existing team members to cultivate and keep them in this valuable sales role? First and foremost, employees will always perform at their best when they work in an environment that promotes growth.

A successful sales professional is, by nature, highly competitive. They thrive on the opportunity to sell more and be more rewarded for their exemplary performance. So how can you provide the right motivation? The most obvious is financial growth. Here’s an example, if the target is three new home sales per month, yet your sales pro makes four more, then be willing to offer additional percentage to the commission.

Another way to retain your new home sales team is continual education. You know that great sales people are super competitive, they’re always seeking an advantage. You can deliver a big benefit by offering them additional training. I’m not talking about sales training. I’m speaking about mindset training, goal-setting training, technology training, and psychology training. You want your team members to grow with you, so what are you doing to grow your team? How about giving then the reward of knowledge and skill?

Progress can be described as achieving greater results on a personal level, on a day-to-day basis. It’s sustained achievements over a period of time. A sales professional will thrive in the right environment and for the right company. They won’t leave a positions that fulfills their emotional and financial needs.

And how about recognition, appreciation, opportunity? At the end of the day, if you provided an enticing retirement and you’re an effective leader, you won’t need to look over your shoulder wondering if your top players will be recruited away. If you pay attention to your team, then they will pay attention to their position. So, pay attention!

Sales Profiling: A Lead Is A Person, Not A Thing

Categories: Customer Service, New Home Sales, New Home Sales Coach, New Home Sales Management, New Home Sales Training | Posted: April 18, 2017

Sales professionals often refer to “leads” like a form letter. They read the characteristics and make assumptions.

These same people talk about working their leads via social media or the CRM system.

I wonder, how does these people who are being treated as a “lead” feel about the sales person? Do they categorize him or her as just “someone trying to sell me”? Do they recognize those form emails?

These characterizations create barriers that impact the sales process. You see the other person as a caricature or stereotype, based on brief information gained through an online inquiry or Facebook post. I guess we could call it “sales profiling”.

We’re in a new age of personal selling that was ironically spawned from impersonal impact of the Internet. People shop on the Web. They do their research there. They even look for reviews and recommendations.

But when it comes down to making an important purchase, like buying a new home, the sales process requires a personal relationship. A buyer needs to trust that a sales professional is truly committed to finding the right home—in the right location and at the right price. That trust doesn’t come from an introductory email or a few Facebook messages swapped online. It can start there, but you need to cultivate those relationships.

A “lead” is an inquiry that stems from interest. You need to gauge the level of interest by getting to know the person. A lead could go nowhere, or it could bring you to not just one sale, but more referrals.

Emails, online inquiries, and social media stir up leads. It’s your job to take the one-dimensional thing and create a relationship. Pick up the phone and call. Ask questions. Answer questions. Offer suggestions. Successful selling is a partnership between you and your customer. It only starts with a lead. Where will you take it?

Myers Barnes is America’s favorite new home sales trainer, author, speaker and consultant.  For more information, please visit www.myersbarnes.com.

Ice Cubes To Eskimos

Categories: New Home Sales Coach, New Home Sales Management, New Home Sales Management Training, New Home Sales Training, New Home Sales Training Video | Posted: March 15, 2017

Have you ever received a backdoor compliment? When I was once told I could “sell ice cubes to eskimos,” the context may have been genuine, but the meaning wasn’t accurate.
As a real estate professional, you’re helping people make one of the single most significant decisions of their lives.  You’re not only selling a product, you’re helping people select the environment that will shape their lives and the lives of their families.
In the eskimos ‘case, selling someone something they don’t actually need would mean you’re in it only for the sake of the deal and not the good of the customer. Learn how simply keeping the goal of service in the forefront of your sales will make all the difference.
Myers Barnes is America’s favorite new home sales trainer, author, speaker and consultant.  For more information, please visit www.myersbarnes.com.

Selling Is A Dialogue, Not A Conversation

Categories: New Home Sales, New Home Sales Management, New Home Sales Management Training, New Home Sales Training | Posted: January 31, 2017

The concept of conversational selling may be a friendly approach to the sales process, but it’s not the most effective. Why? A conversation lacks a purpose. Alone, it is nothing more than a time filler or casual banter back and forth. And although this can still be part of your sales process, what you really need is a dialogue. Consider a dialogue like the screen play of a movie or show. It’s meant to guide you to a specific emotional response, having been constructed in a purposeful way. Like in most things, you won’t succeed without preparation. Don’t just engage in conversation, but create a dialogue that has a guided path with a desired outcome: the conclusion of the sale. Learn more about how crafting a dialogue will help your sales soar.

Myers Barnes is America’s favorite new home sales trainer, author, speaker and consultant.  For more information, please visit www.myersbarnes.com.

Move Now Before Interest Rates Do (Referred To As The “Interest Rate Close”)

Categories: New Home Sales, New Home Sales Management, Personal Development, Real Estate Courses | Posted: December 6, 2016

1Most consumers and sales professionals alike may not understand the urgency of moving now before the interest rates do. However, use the example of rates increasing by merely one percentage point. I’ll illustrate why this is important.

Suppose a home is priced at $295,000. Naturally, the customers we consult with and salespeople we educate represent homes across America that may have prices as little as $199,000 or up in the millions of dollars. But, we’ll take the median of $295,000, purely for example purposes. Now, keep in mind the difference between cost and price. The price of $295,000 is a one-time event, while the interest rate represents a 30 year on-going cost.

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Please note the difference in payment (cost). A mere one-percent increase in interest rates seems small at only $171 per month. However, an increase in the monthly payment (cost) over 30 years is a whopping $61,560!

Using this example, you may want to memorize and internalize the following script (Sales Dialogue) and use it to convey the urgency to your potential customers “to move now before the rates do.”

Prospect: We need to think it over (or) sell our home (or) wait (stall) for whatever reason.

Superachiever: Miss Prospect, may I explain the benefit of moving now, rather than waiting?

Prospect: Yes.

Superachiever: The challenge with waiting involves several factors. First, if you are not aware, interest rates have been considerably rising. As a matter of fact, rising rates are an inevitability. With this in mind, consider how interest rates can affect the value of a brand new home.

When acquiring a home, you must always consider the relationship between cost and price. The price of the home is only $295,000 and is, of course, a one-time consideration and a fixed amount. However, cost is an on-going expense and can dramatically affect the final value of a home. A mere one-percent increase in interest rates represents an additional $171 per month or $61,560 over the entire term of a 30-year loan. When you analyze the situation, it’s as if you can say the price of a $295,000 home will now cost $356,560 if interest rates rise by merely another percentage point. Miss Prospect, my question to you is, “Do you think it’s possible that rates could continue to go up?”

Prospect: I suppose they could.

Superachiever: Then I suggest you consider moving now before the rates do. Does that make sense to you?

Prospect: Yes, when you put it that way, I suppose it makes perfect sense.

Superachiever: Let’s do this. We’ll work together and select the perfect home and place it on the ideal homesite, and simultaneously discuss the best financial program available to fit your unique needs.

With this information and selling strategy, you should be able to take advantage of any move the market and the economy make. Of course, the best information won’t benefit you unless you apply it. So take this information and if it applies to your selling situation, change your selling strategy before the interest rates do.

*Calculations do not include taxes and insurance

Myers Barnes is America’s favorite new home sales trainer, author, speaker and consultant.  For more information, please visit www.myersbarnes.com.

Easy Street Is A Detour Off The Road To Success

Categories: New Home Sales Coach, New Home Sales Management, New Home Sales Management Training, Personal Development | Posted: November 29, 2016

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Scott Peck’s classic book, “The Road Less Traveled”, starts with three words:

“Life is difficult.”

Peck first published the bestseller in 1978—before the Internet, smartphones, and all the gadgetry that has been created, presumably, to make our lives less difficult. Has it? Or has technology given us the idea that we can get whatever we want, as fast as we want?

The road to achievement is less traveled, because it is marked with bumps and potholes—obstacles that can sometimes be difficult to navigate. Life not an easy trip. It’s not promised to be. Without challenge, we don’t grow. We don’t learn how to improvise and innovate. We merely move along, accepting the status quo.

Those who want a smooth ride can aim for the easy way out, but what will they miss along the way?

When I hit a bump in the road, I take it as a learning experience. Why did I end up here? Did I take a wrong turn or make a bad decision? Was I basing my choice on incorrect or incomplete information, while ignoring my instincts? What can I take away from this part of my journey?

As much as we would love to take the express route to success, there are no shortcuts. In fact, taking Easy Street is a detour off the road to success.

In his 2008 book, “Outliers: The Story of Success”, Malcom Gladwell presented his “10,000-Hour Rule”. He posited that achieving true mastery—not mere proficiency—of any skill requires 10,000 hours of practice. Becoming an expert doesn’t happen by reading a couple of books or attending a webinar. You have to put that knowledge to work, test it, refine it, and shape it into your own success. That type of achievement doesn’t occur quickly. It can’t.

When you choose speed over commitment, you compromise the outcome. You might even settle for “good enough”, which equates to “average”. Does average make you remarkable? Does average define successful people?

Imagine where we would be if everyone took the easy way out. Mediocrity might replace the exceptional. We would settle for what we have. People might attempt to strive for something more, but they would give up short of reaching the goal.

Easy Street is a dead-end road for anyone who desires true success. Don’t delay your journey with shortcuts.

Myers Barnes is America’s favorite new home sales trainer, author, speaker and consultant.  For more information, please visit www.myersbarnes.com.

Rethinking the Sales Process

Categories: Leadership, New Home Sales, New Home Sales Management, New Home Sales Marketing, New Home Sales Process, New Home Sales Training | Posted: November 1, 2016

transferring-innovation-from-science-to-businessThe new home sales process is a science and, as with any scientific field, gut feelings and hunches do not play a role. A good business plan should be developed with a solid strategy and an understanding that selling and marketing new homes consists of four components.

Labeled the Four Ps, they were popularized by Proctor & Gamble and are utilized by industry giants such as General Electric and Microsoft. The Four P’s are effective because they break the sales and marketing process into four parts: Place, Product, Price & Promotion.

PLACE. You’ve heard the old adage: The three keys to buying real estate are location, location, location. It’s absolutely true.

The successful builder/developer understands that people don’t just live in homes. They live in a particular area, within the confines of a neighborhood in which the homes are located. Location is the factor that separates one neighborhood from another. Any builder/developer can, for the most part, construct homes at approximately the same cost per square foot, provided comparable materials are used. But the one single factor that changes the perception of value is where one home is located over another.

PRODUCT. Who is your competition? It is either other builders, or, in the case of an established neighborhood, your competition may be the resale market. You should only enter a market when your product has a perceived value that surpasses your competition.

When evaluating housing designs and floor plans, study the area’s past 12- to 24-month sales history. If a distinct market-share has been established with three-bedroom, 2.5 bath homes, then do not attempt to reinvent the wheel. Enter the marketplace with a proven design and simply add enhancements such as vaulted ceilings, spa baths, walk-in closets, or a better use of square footage. Then, you are sure to gain your fair percentage of market share.

PRICE. Again, gut feelings and hunches play no role in determining the price point for your homes. Price cannot ultimately be determined by your desire for a certain profit margin, but rather by what consumers have paid in the past.

Price is easily determined by comparable values, which can be accessed through MLS. To disregard historical pricing data and produce a product at prices that are not proven in the marketplace is writing your own invitation to disaster.

PROMOTION. Contrary to popular belief, promotion is not limited to just a good “sales process.” To reach a target audience, you must effectively plan and budget. My personal belief is that your marketing, merchandising, and products should be so good that they could almost make you, as a salesperson, obsolete.

Today’s great salespeople have developed a new mindset: They recognize that success no longer depends on communicating the value of the offering, but instead rests on the salesperson’s ability to “create value” for customers. Builders and developers who delude themselves into believing that selling is easy and strictly a function of building houses will be beat like a drum in the marketplace. It is important to grasp this truth: A sales process is a series of actions and systems directed toward the end result, which is creating a sale on purpose.

In most cases, failure in the marketplace is the result of poor planning. The Four P’s – Place, Product, Price and Promotion – are like a four-legged stool. If each is not weighted proportionately and backed with a proven sales process, the stool will wobble and become unbalanced. If the four areas are not balanced, you may see your sales topple just like a lopsided stool.

Myers Barnes is America’s favorite new home sales trainer, author, speaker and consultant.  For more information, please visit www.myersbarnes.com.

Healthy Competition. How Will You Stand Out From The Crowd?

Categories: New Home Sales, New Home Sales Management, New Home Sales Management Training, Personal Development, Real Estate Courses | Posted: October 18, 2016

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As any U.S. builder knows, housing is a competitive business. But imagine for a moment if it wasn’t.

Think about Google. Google is a monopoly because it has no real competition. No other search engines—not even those from Microsoft or Yahoo—can come close to its level of popularity. PayPal cofounder Peter Thiel told Business Insider magazine that Google is a monopoly because it’s “a kind of company that’s so good at what it does that no other firm can offer a close substitute,” a company that’s “10x” better at what it does than anybody else.

Google has no competition and thus does not compete with any other companies and needs no advertising or salespeople for its distribution. Sounds nice, right?

Now, back to reality. In an uber-competitive marketplace like home building, other builders are constantly breathing down your neck. Of course, ideas like sales processes, advertising, and model homes are important but in our industry price is king. A competitive building company must sell its homes at a market price and–like it or not– you don’t get to decide the price.

Price should be determined by comparable values, which can be accessed through MLS. The market dictates the price, and to disregard the market with prices that are higher than what the market will bear, you will swim upstream into futility.

One more thing: Because housing is so competitive, successful companies must differentiate themselves from the crowd in order to make the sale. And it takes more than just building a “quality” house to differentiate.

As you already know, the home building industry is not like Google. It is market driven, so pick your market carefully and have a solid strategy in place to stand out from the competition. In my next blog I’ll address the four pillars of successful sales and marketing.

Myers Barnes is America’s favorite new home sales trainer, author, speaker and consultant.  For more information, please visit www.myersbarnes.com.

Nix the naysayers. Their toxicity can be terminal!

Categories: Leadership, New Home Sales Coach, New Home Sales Management, Personal Development | Posted: October 4, 2016

Four blank white speech bubblesYou know some of those people. No matter what you say, they reply with a negative comment.

You say it looks like a nice day. They tell you to expect foul weather.

You talk about the opportunities that lay ahead. They focus on the obstacles. They’ll tell you “it can’t be done.”

Theodore Roosevelt said, “Believe you can and you’re halfway there.”

People who always steer toward the negative side are destined to remain unfulfilled. Maybe they tell you that this pessimism is based on experience, but I believe they are the drivers of their success or failure. Those people who thrive are the ones who nix the naysayers. They have more faith in what’s possible than what others tell them is beyond that realm.

Every invention we enjoy today resulted from someone trying harder and believing in possibility. Thomas Edison tried 10,000 ways to invent electricity. Some might say he failed. He viewed it as the path to his success. “I have not failed,” he said. “I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”

If you want to succeed in life and work, focus on what you can do, what you positivitycan change, and what you want to achieve. It doesn’t matter what others tell you. Determination and positivity will take you much farther than even your skill. Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team because his coach thought he wasn’t good enough. He didn’t let that negative belief stop him. He worked harder, practiced relentlessly. And he became one of the best professional basketball players of all time.

Walt Disney was fired from his first job as a newspaper cartoonist. His editor thought he had no creative ideas.

Avoid negative thinkers. They’re toxic to your success. Don’t let their poison seep into your belief in yourself.

We are the sum of our choices and the reflection of our beliefs. Choose well. Believe in yourself. Success will be your reward.

Myers Barnes is America’s favorite new home sales trainer, author, speaker and consultant. For more information, please visit www.myersbarnes.com.

Selling Is A Dialogue, Not A Conversation.

Categories: Customer Service, New Home Sales, New Home Sales Management, New Home Sales Marketing, New Home Sales Process, New Home Sales Training | Posted: September 27, 2016

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Recently, I was talking with a great sales executive who was explaining the concept of “conversational selling”. He told me that this particular process is a more “people-friendly experience for the buyer. If we maintain control while simultaneously keeping it real with people, the comfort experienced by most of them will result in a successful sale.”

I heard what he was saying. I’ve heard it many times before.

I just don’t happen to harmonize with it.

A “conversation” isn’t purposeful. You engage in conversation with people on the street, in the grocery store, while waiting in line. It’s often a time-filler, a casual back-and-forth that can be entertaining, enlightening, or possibly thought provoking.

But what conversation lacks is purpose. You don’t venture into a conversation with a desired outcome in mind. You offer a thought, the recipient lobs one back, and you volley from there. It can drift away into unexpected tangents, and you let it—simply because that’s the interesting miscellany of conversation.

A “dialogue”, on the other hand, is a scene that is played out, in advance, in your mind. Like a director with a screenplay, your dialogue is intended to communicate a specific point, to reach a conclusion.

In the pre-Internet days, you delivered a sales presentation. It was one-sided. We served up persuasive content, carefully crafted to influence the buyer by dangling those carrots that would prompt a bite. It was, in reality, a monologue.

The Internet created a vehicle for people to browse, research, study, and even engage in conversation. Buyers today come to you with far more knowledge and insight than ever before. With the advent of social media, they’ve also become accustomed to conversation and building virtual relationships in this way.

Sales presentations have evolved, as some trainers rebranded the sales presentation and named it “sales conversation”. Selling became more about relationship building than the feature-benefit presentational approach. This connection has grown from communication that encourages trust.

I respect the idea here, yet I believe we need to commit more deeply to the goal. Instead on conversation, engage in a “sales dialogue”. Prepare yourself for the role of salesperson by knowing the outcome you desire, and then crafting the exchange to achieve it. Sure, go ahead and achieve a friendly relationship through the casual banter of conversation. I’m not advising that you skip this step. I am, however, suggesting that you use the opportunity in a more purposeful way.

Prepare the dialogue in advance. Fine-tune it so that the language delivers a message of knowledge and honesty, with healthy dose of persuasion. Study the dialogue. Create scripts that enable you to be prepared to address objections in a friendly, but guided manner.

When you watch a television show or movie, you’re hearing dialogue that has been wordsmithed, with the purpose of guiding you to a specific emotional response. The writers craft the language as interplay between two people. It’s not ad-libbed. You won’t succeed without preparation. Create a dialogue that prompts purposeful engagement between the salesperson and potential buyer. Remember that the scene should not waft along in conversation, but move along a guided path to the desired outcome—the close.

 

Myers Barnes is America’s favorite new home sales trainer, author, speaker and consultant.  For more information, please visit www.myersbarnes.com.