"I think this will just again solidify that, you know, 'Hey, I know what I'm talking about. I wrote this book.'"
Jim has been receiving a couple referrals a year from a local attorney. He plans to use the Divorce Book to get even more listings in this untapped niche!
"I had to get kind of around that, like, 'I wrote the book' thing. But as I read them, I did write the book — I just didn't physically write it, but I mean, the stuff that they talk about, that's what I do. That's exactly what I say, so it really isn't any kind of departure."
Listen to his story here, and read his Q&A with our team below.
Smart Agents: How long have you been using the Smart Agents books?
Jim: Oh, I think I started with them back in the fall, maybe like September or something like that?
Smart Agents: And which books have you been using?
Jim: Mostly the For Sale By Owner, but I've used the Expired one, and I even got some of the Divorce ones because I have a divorce attorney that sends me business off and on. So I thought that might be useful for that. So I have that one and then the one that's just the generic kind of Seller's Guide sort of thing.
Smart Agents: Which one of these has been the most successful for you?
Jim: By a long percentage, the For Sale By Owner.
Smart Agents: What are some of the tactics you've used to hand out the books?
Jim: Well, basically what I do is, I'll call a For Sale By Owner and ask them if they're still selling the home and so on, and then, I set up an appointment to come look at it. And then I tell them, "Hey, you know, since you're letting me come over, I actually wrote this book on how to sell by owner." Because I'm coming not from a position of trying to list the house but just help them sell it. So we build that relationship. So I bring the book as a gift for letting me come and meet with them and things like that, and it's been really very popular. They've been really grateful for it, so it creates a really strong bond almost immediately.
Smart Agents: In your video, you mentioned a listing that you did as a result of the books. Would you kindly tell me more about that one?
Jim: Yeah, it was a For Sale By Owner and they were trying to do it themselves, and we all know that that's not gonna work. So I went and met with them, and I brought the book and I gave it to them. Because like I said, I'm coming from a position of trying to help them. And this is the law of reciprocity at work. If I give them something, then they feel obligated to give me something.
So, I went out and met with them. I took the book and I told them, "Look, I'm just gonna give this to you and it can help you do marketing, learn how to stage the home, things like that, that can help you sell it for more money. And they kept trying to sell the house for about another two weeks probably, and weren't getting anywhere. And then they called me and said, "Hey, we really liked your book; we think you're professional. We'd like you to list our home." And I went and listed it, and it's in contract right now closing in about three weeks. So 700,000 dollars.
Smart Agents: Wow, that's great. And what kind of feedback have you been getting from clients about the books?
Jim: Oh, they're just impressed. They look so professional. First of all, they're not huge, so they're not overwhelming, like a ton of things to read. It's very easy to read. You know, usually they're right around 100 pages or so.
So it's not like I'm asking them to read the next great novel or anything. But they like it because again, I'm coming not from a position like every other agent is, of where I'm trying to immediately go in and get their business. I'm sincerely just trying to help them and I'm giving them a tool that can help them sell their house. But normally, what happens is they don't want to deal with it anymore and then we have that relationship, so they call me.
Smart Agents: What do you love most about the books?
Jim: Just that it builds instant rapport and credibility. And in fact, I've referred it to a couple of other agents in my area that are using it too. So it's just a way to stand out. And that's what I'm always looking for. I'm always looking for something that makes me different than the next 20 agents that are gonna come along.
So, when I heard about this, it immediately appealed to me. And it's been good. It's been working.
Smart Agents: Is there anything about the books that you feel needs to be improved or that we could do better?
Jim: Not really. Even the length of time to get them isn't really bad, so when I start getting down to about 10 or so left, I'll order some more. I mean, it doesn't seem to take very long to get 'em. So no, I really can't think of much better than that. It's been awesome.
Though the book is written by a ghostwriter when I read the book, there was a lot of stuff that I do and say. So it really felt natural to me because if I would sit down and write this book myself, it would be very similar to that. Because the things that are hit on are things that I do or say.