"I've actually gotten two listings."
Things started a little slow for Tonya, but after she decided to actively give out her books, she immediately landed two listings!
" Things are starting to take off. Isn't that neat?"
Listen to Tonya's story here, and read her Q&A with our team below.
Smart Agents: When did you get started with the books?
Tonya: I got them a few months ago but I didn’t start using them until recently. I was following up on listings that I'd lost, unfortunately. So I was wrapping that up, but since that's taken care of, now I can focus more on the business. If I see someone at a Starbucks, and I'm working on something, I leave my books out. I've had a lady that called me the other day, because she moved from Houston with her husband's job, but now they're moving back.
And because she kept my book, she remembered me. So they're going to move back to Houston and buy a house. And she said she really, really enjoyed the book. So I was so happy about that, you know? Like wow! Business cards- anyone can lose those. But the book- they have something tangible in their hands.
Smart Agents: What books are you using, and which of those have been the most successful?
Tonya: I was doing expired ... I think I only ordered about five that were expired, just to see how it would go, and unfortunately didn't get any callbacks, and they didn't respond to the follow-up call, but, you know, I said, "I don't want to get discouraged with that." Because it was just kind of testing a few expires, you know, not too many.
So I just recently ordered more books, so I'm going to start with the For Sale by Owners, and I'm focusing on sellers. You know, how to sell your home for more money.
I want to kind of stay close to those two niches right now and not overwhelm myself by trying to target too many different niches at one time.
Smart Agents: Yes.
Tonya: I have a lady that I was doing phone time with, and her aunt is a realtor. or a loan officer. No, no, she's a broker. And the lady has been calling me and she said, "I have been reading this book, and it's really good. If I don't end up using my aunt, I'm going to use you." So I'm hoping that book will inspire her, you know, to use me instead of her aunt.
So that's where I'm at right now with the books. I just ordered more of the home sellers books and I plan to give those to my past clients. I want them to have that book to keep, you know, in their kitchen, in the drawer, somewhere where it's big enough for them to see it, so they're remember me.
Smart Agents: What tactics are you using to hand out the books?
Tonya: I read one of your testimonials about this agent who said he didn't give out the book. I guess he made just copies of the cover of the book and gave out those together with his package and left it on the front porch. I'm going to test that too and include postcards as well.
I had the 6 by 9 postcards made. Now that's what I'm sending out in my neighborhood.
Tonya: So I'm trying to really think of cost-efficient ways to utilize my book. I'm going to laminate a color copy of my for-sale-by-owner book, like the first copy laminated front and back. So they can see what the book is about in the back, and I'm going to have it laminated the same size as the book-And then I'm going to leave the letter with it that you guys provided and do a follow-up call.
I want to put my references in there and leave the full package, and then that's the next video I'm going to send in, just to see how that goes, you know? So I'm trying different things.
Smart Agents: How long have you been using the books?
Tonya: I've been using it the last, I'd say, two months now continuously, like really well putting them into play. Because before I ordered them, and they were just kind of sitting. Because I didn't have a plan together yet, and then I would kind of just take them on with me and just kind of showing them off a little bit.
Smart Agents: Okay, and what makes you continue using the books?
Tonya: Well because I'm getting an instant positive response you know, whether it's family or friends. And then I advertise with them on Facebook, because I'm going to do an open house tomorrow and I was going through the part of Smart Agents about how to present them in open house. Well, you don't have a lot of time to talk about your book, but you can still leave them out there. And for those buys who don't have an agent, Because I'm not just going to give them out for people to take.
I want to have that quick conversation, have them out just on display, to follow up with those potential buyers, and then give them one, you know? So I'm going to start showcasing them at my open houses, now that I have time, you know, to do open houses. And then barber shops, daycares ... Leave them at places in the community. Doctor's offices, I've found, they're kind of skeptical, and I even went to the trucking companies. You know, because truckers make a lot of money.
Smart Agents: Okay, and you mentioned in your video that the books are an attention-getter. Would you tell me more about that?
Tonya: Oh, well what I did is I had one of the books made as a door magne and people can see it as I drive around. And then I had you guys put my company ran sign in the yard of the house.
And those things, you know, "Get your free copy of your book," you know, a free of the book. "Call me.” So I have had people like at the stores ... They stop and they read it. And I'm trying to catch them and get them. But I just don't give them a book. But I am getting attention. People are looking at my door magnet on my car, I mean my car magnet.
So, you know, I want to now focus on follow-up ways. Work on getting the calls. Because if you don't follow-up, you're not going to get results. So that's why I don't want to have too many different areas of my books right now. So home-sellers, for-sale-by-owners, and, of course, because, you know, I deal with a lot of buyers.
Smart Agents: Do you feel that you get more respect from the sellers once you give them the books?
Tonya: Oh, yes, yes. Yes, because I watch their facial exams, and then I ask them, "So what do you think?" And they're like, "Wow!" You know, they'll be honest and say, "Well, we read the first chapter, but those are some good ideas. That's very smart and clever." So again, it's making sure I call them and ask what they think. Or-
Smart Agents: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Tonya: Let's say, for instance, I had some home-sellers before and then I gave them the book afterwards. And they're like, "It's really interesting. I haven't read all of it, but I'm ..." And, making sure, you know, you don't want to miss out on some good pointers that could help you on your next house you flip, you know?
Smart Agents: Alright. So when you give them to sellers that you had contacted before, but you had no feedback, no ... They give you more attention after you give them the book?
Tonya: Oh yeah. Yes, yes. They look through it, and then they're like, "Wow!" And then, of course, they're just looking at it, right? Maybe they had time to read it, maybe not. But they'll probably all leaf through it, and I think they're really good ideas. Or a few of them is like, "You know, I really got some good information from that. I appreciate it." You know?
Smart Agents: Yeah. Yeah, I guess that will be the ultimate authority. Like, if she can be able to see that you are better than the aunt, because you are more knowledgeable-
Tonya: Yeah. "Hit them with a really reputable realtor who's giving some awesome, free advise. Just kind of help them."
Smart Agents: Do you have a goal of a certain number of listings that you want to be getting every month?
Tonya: Yes, I would love to get, like realistically and constantly, at least three a month, I think is realistic.
Smart Agents: Alright, and do you see the books getting you those three listings?
Tonya: Yes. Yes.
Smart Agents: What kind of feedback have you gotten from clients about the books?
Tonya: Oh, oh! She was saying that the staging, you know, during things like setting up the home that helps her, because they have a lot of things in their home.
Smart Agents: Would you recommend this system to another agent?
Tonya: Oh, well, not in my office. I'm going to be honest, I haven't referred them to other agents because we are each other's competition. I'm sorry. I'm going to keep that in my back pocket.
Smart Agents: That's true. That's very true.
Smart Agents: Alright, thank you so much for your time. I really appreciate it.
Tonya: You're welcome. You have a good day.
Smart Agents: You, too.