At Inman Luxury Connect in Las Vegas, two star agents agreed that being happy in what you do, consistency and follow-up were keys to reaching the next level in luxury real estate sales.
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Taking your business to the next level isn’t easy, which is why a conference room at Las Vegas’s Aria Resort convention center was packed to hear GLOBL Red’s Kofi Nartey and Aaron Kirman, president of the Estates Division for Compass in Los Angeles, share how they did it.
Everyone seemed to leave this Luxury Connect session with the same thought: There just wasn’t enough time to cover it all.
But the discussion was surely lively.
Kirman opened by admitting he wasn’t very organized when he started, resorting to just doing deals and winging it until the next one came along. Until a former partner asked him what his goals were in the business, he always figured real estate was random.
“But he was right — what were my goals?” Kirman told onlookers. “What number did I want to reach? When I decided to set an actual number to reach every month, it became more fun to understand how we were doing.”
To up your business through goal-setting, Kirman recommended breaking down that goal by each deal. Determine which deals are more likely to close, and focus there.
“Come up with a goal, break it down by days, months, hours … I may have 30 offers out, written down on my whiteboard, but I might only close six of them,” he said.
But Kirman made it clear he remains focused on making sure he’s happy in what he’s doing and that agents can’t reach the next level unless they really like what they’re doing.
“It’s OK to have a bad month,” He said. “Enjoy the process.”
Kirman shared a time where he walked away from $400 million in listing business because the clients had grown challenging, and he wasn’t in the right headspace.
“But a few months later, it all came back to me, with clients who were my people,” he said.
However, Kirman didn’t reach his level of success by being too relaxed about business. The next deal is never certain, he cautioned.
“If you’re harried in your operations or not focusing on how to generate income today, you’re out of business tomorrow,” he said.
Kirman reminded everyone in the room that they should work every day as if they don’t have a client. He tells people all the time, he said, that “you don’t have a client today.”
Nartey emphasized finding a niche to level up your business. His early focus was on professional athletes and celebrities. To track down the hard-to-reach luxury clients and their gatekeepers, you need to offer them something “they can’t Google.”
“What’s different about your niche — whether it’s a geographic farm or demographic farm — demonstrate that you know it better than anyone else.” Nartey said. “Put out content; become the expert. You have to be known for something or get lost in the sea of sameness.”
Hands went up en masse when questions were requested, and they ranged from how to reach family offices to what kind of outreach each of the top producers use to find new business.
On the topic of family offices and outreach, Nartey is very selective about how many emails he sends and what they contain. LinkedIn is a popular networking tool for him.
“Each message will be custom, and I try to make sure that my last few posts will resonate with who I’m trying to reach,” he said.
While Kirman pointed to Nartey as an expert on breaking through the sturdy walls of family offices and personal wealth managers, he says there are others way to penetrate the big-money clients.
“Have soldiers,” he said. “You need three to four soldiers working on your behalf to get you that business. You need to find advocates who will be your champion — people who have worked with people in those family offices. They’ll come to you.”
Overall, the two star agents agreed that being happy in what you do, consistency and follow-up were keys to reaching the next level in luxury sales.
“If you’re not following up, someone else is,” Kirman said.
“And you have to lead with value, some sort of offering of value,” Nartey said. “Try to be mindful. When you get them on the phone, ask lots of questions.”
Craig C. Rowe started in commercial real estate at the dawn of the dot-com boom, helping an array of commercial real estate companies fortify their online presence and analyze internal software decisions. He now helps agents with technology decisions and marketing through reviewing software and tech for Inman.