A Simple Guide to Excel Outside Your Market

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Sometimes when we sit down with amazing agents, we are reminded that success isn’t about doing everything, but rather, about focusing on the key things that really make a difference. Erica West really drove this point home when we spoke to her about how she continues to build an impressive business while living thousands of miles away for half of the year. The realizations she’s made about succeeding in business are applicable to anyone looking to succeed at a high level.
Erica West got her real estate license in Southeast Michigan right before the pandemic shut the world down in March of 2020. Getting into the business during this time of uncertainty was tough, so she focused on learning as much as she could about selling real estate from her own home. In the first nine months, she didn’t sell anything. But then, her hard work began to pay off and she sold ten houses in the remaining months of 2020. In 2021, her business continued to take off and she did 36 transactions. And that’s when she made a change.
In 2022, she relocated to San Diego, California. However, rather than shutter her Michigan business and start from scratch in her new city, she decided to continue to pour into her Michigan business while building the San Diego one. Despite being thousands of miles away from her home market, she maintained the same number of transactions there. What she learned in the process is useful for anyone looking to grow their real estate business.
  1. Lead Generate Consistently
    Erica considers time blocking for lead generation a non-negotiable. After all, she knows that when your lead generation time is consistent, your business growth will be consistent as well. To that end, every day, she spends two hours lead generating for her business in Michigan. She calls her sphere, friends, and past clients. And because she invests time into developing these relationships, she finds the reach-outs are natural. She takes notes about their conversations in her CRM so that when she talks to them again, she can pick right up where they left off. While she genuinely cares about and supports her sphere, Erica recognizes that consistently coming from a place of contribution and thoughtfulness will benefit her business over the long term.
  2. Determine Where You Thrive
    When you know what you’re good at when it comes to lead generating, it makes the time spent on the task much easier. Erica, for example, loves interacting face-to-face with people. To that end, she’s grown her business by concentrating on tactics like open houses and for sale by owners (FSBOs).
    Upon moving to San Diego, Erica began to establish her business in the new market by continuing to focus on the type of lead generation she excelled at: face-to-face relationship building. She joined multiple groups, meetups and networking events and committed to meeting someone in her new community every week for coffee or cocktails. In other words, no matter the market, she continuously shows up for the people in it to connect with and deepen both new and existing relationships.
  3. Get into Relationships with the Right People
    Relying on the right leverage is important in any business. For Erica, investing in professional relationships as leverage helped her business to thrive. Being thousands of miles away from her Michigan-based business, Erica realized she needed a support system that she could rely on and trust to deliver the same type of energy to her clients that she did. She found two individuals who could help her to take care of clients. While being clear on your standards and values is important for anyone looking to add leverage to their life, Erica found people that she can work in tandem to help her clients feel taken care of and supported. She realized that clients care more about her procedures, systems, and values than they care about working with her directly. As she sets expectations from the get-go that there are multiple people involved in making sure a client’s transaction goes smoothly, they are happy with the process. After all, it’s her system for success that they are truly hiring.
  4. Be Learning-Oriented
    One of Erica’s biggest takeaways from her success over the past couple of years is the importance of ongoing learning. As she explains, if you take the time to grow yourself, the growth of your business is a domino reaction. People want to be around you when they see a positive growth trajectory – and this can magnetize your success. Erica knows that there is so much she can learn from the people around her, so she is careful to pay attention to her surroundings.
There is no need to overcomplicate things when it comes to excelling in your market. Find lead generation techniques that resonate with you and do them consistently. Invest in relationships professionally and personally. Never stop learning. When you have standards around these key behaviors, the business will come.
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