By Nobu Hata
I loathe business planning. Recognizing one’s failings from the previous year, and moving forward, learning from mistakes is a hard thing to do. And since the economy hit the skids, it’s become increasingly difficult to “plan” for anything as of late.
But the one thing I’ve made a commitment to do this year, is to ask advice from those agents who are still thriving after 20-plus years in the industry, every chance I get. I’m going to put my money where my “industry hasn’t changed, but the tools have” mantra is. These folks have seen previous recessions, have experienced double-digit interest rates, and walked uphill to listing presentations – both ways! – to boot.
One of the best pieces of advice I’ve received so far this year is to door-knock – “Go out and find the inventory that’s lacking, for your clients…”. The very thought of getting a door slammed in my face, in real life, scares the bejeezus out of me; but I’ve got clients interested in a particular neighborhood where no blogging/social media/twitter campaign will work, so what the heck. As luck would have it, I happened upon the neighborhood while the homeowners were digging out of some monster snows we had, so I took the dog for a walk and chatted up the neighbors as I walked by. Six prospective sellers, and a hit for my client later, I was sold. And it only took an hour to do it!
Us REALTOR2.0’s like to strut our stuff with the Facebooks, blogs and Tweets, but every now and then it pays to get some fresh perspective from the professionals who are still alive and kicking in these tough times. After all, some of those “tools” haven’t changed a bit!
So go old-school! Which old tool will you use in a new way this year?
Nobu Hata is a sales associate for Edina Realty in Minneapolis, and a founding member of the Minneapolis YPN group, the YoPros. Visit his Web site at www.nobuhata.com.