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 The Secret to Doing More Deals is in the Palm of Your Hand

Answering the phone is so important and it’s a bit of a lost art that we’ve forgotten about. It’s a common courtesy lost in today’s digital age of emails and texting, but it really hurts your business if you don’t do it. Here, I share a great example of why going old school and picking up the phone is still as important as ever through a recent adventure I had looking for a siding contractor. The main factor that helped me pick who I decided to work with was how responsive they were and who called me back in a timely manner.

When you answer your phone, you show you’re serious, which means you’ll do more deals. If you want to double your business, answer calls right away. If you can’t, at least send a text message saying you’re sorry you missed the call, and that you’ll get back to them ASAP. You can also hire virtual assistants to help you out with phone calls. Lots of folks use technology tools to keep everything organized as well, but you don’t have to get fancy if that’s not your style. In fact, one of the most successful guys I know does it all with an assistant and a pad of paper in his car.

Listen and learn:

What’s inside:

  • Why answering the phone is the secret to doing more deals.

Mentioned in this episode:

Download episode transcript in PDF format here…

Joe: Hey, what's going on? Joe McCall, REI In Your Car Podcast. Good morning. It's 6:40 a.m. and it's 46 degrees outside. It is cold. And I say that it's cold because yesterday it was in the mid seventies and for November it was really unseasonably warm here in Saint Louis, Missouri. But anyway, it's back down to normal. And I'm just heading home from the gym. And I wanted to talk about something really important, and it's about answering your phone. And I think we have forgotten the lost art of answering the phone or returning calls back quickly. Like it's a common courtesy that people have forgotten. And it really hurts your business if you don't do it. Now, what's the, let me give you some context here a little bit. We need new siding and new gutters on our house. So the other day, I don't have a whole lot of time, right? Like it's not, I get frustrated because I have to set aside time to make a bunch of phone calls sometimes. And so I sat. I set aside finally some time and did some research on there's a great app called Next Door, the Next Door app. If your community is in that where a lot of people ask questions like, I'm looking for a handyman, I need somebody to help replace some windows, or does anybody recommend a good plumber, whatever, so you can look up these keywords in past conversations where people have asked, you know, plumber and so you can search. So I did a search for siding and I found about five or six contractors that people recommended that they've used for siding before. And I made a list. And then I also had another friend who his community over on the other side of the river. They're bigger on Facebook groups. Right. And so he gave me he looked in this Facebook group for the word siding and found some roofing contractors that a lot of people used and recommended and liked. Okay. And then when you call these guys, by the way, you tell them, hey, I saw you recommended in next door in the next door app or in this Facebook group or on Angie's List. And so when you do that, you I have found I tend to get better service and better pricing because guess what? I'm going to be recommending them again in that same app. They know they're getting a lot of new business from that app. They want good recommendations from that. Right. So you tend to get better service, better pricing when you tell them that in most cases, because the last thing they want to lose is their reputation on these platforms because they're really valuable and it's free advertising. Right.

Joe: So anyway, I called about six or seven siding contractors and they all called me back pretty promptly and I called on like a Friday at 5:00 or something like that. It was like at the end of the week after hours. So I got mostly voice mails. A couple of guys did answer, which I was impressed with, but one guy took about three or four days to call me back and he called me back and is apologetic and is like, I'm sorry, I somehow I missed your voicemail and I get it. But here's the thing. Do you think I'm going to do business with that guy? No. No way. Why? Because what's going to happen if I hire him to do the siding on my house and something happens on the job and I am going to call him, leave a voicemail. He's not going to answer. I'm going to text him. He's not going to respond. And then two or three days later, he's going to be like, Oh, I'm sorry, I've just been so busy. So it's not like, you know. Sometimes, you know, people obviously they make mistakes. They're busy. I'm definitely not the perfect shining example of this. But how many times have you guys also when you're in a new neighborhood, you're in a new city, you move in, you're looking for a house to buy or an apartment to rent or something like that. And you find a place online and you call the number. Nine times out of nine, you're going to get a voice mail, especially if it's a real term. You're going to get a voicemail, right? You're going to leave a message and they probably will not call you back. And if they do, it'll be a day later, two days later. How many times have you seen bandit signs? You know, we buy houses and you call that number. It goes to voicemail. They never call you back. You know, when you if you own rental property, you probably get a bunch of mail. You should go through that and call ten called ten different phone numbers. And I'll bet you a glass of iced tea. I'll bet you 100 bucks if you call ten numbers. Only one or two people will answer the phones and then you'll get eight or nine voicemails. And I bet you 100 bucks, only half of them will ever call you back. It's just crazy. It's maddening. I just don't get it. Especially realtors. They're the worst. And they're. I've said it. The realtors are the worst. If guys if you're a realtor, license agent and you just want to double your business overnight, if you want to go for making the average salary of a realtor is what? I think I read one time $15,000 a year full and part time realtors. All of them.

Joe: If you just want to double your business, answer the stupid phone when people call you or if they leave a message, text them back right away. Say, Hey, I'm sorry I missed your call. I call you back as soon as I can and then call them back. It's like simple business one on one. It's etiquette, one on one. I don't know. Maybe you hate money. So that's just a huge pet peeve of mine because I've called so many realtors. You know, you're moving into a city, like I was saying before. And you you were looking for a place to rent or a place to buy, and you call a realtor. They just don't answer the phone. And then when they call you back the next day or the day after. I got your message, and you don't even remember what house it was that you're calling about. It's just maddening and frustrating. Well, there was a few years ago I was looking to hire an acquisitions manager. And what do you want in an acquisitions manager? You want somebody who's accessible. You want somebody who's nice, who's good on the phone and is accessible, like when you call him or her. They either answer the phone or they call you right back. And so I've had really good success with acquisition managers. I've had two or three of them in the past. And you know, this the one thing I did. That was my really my main. Well, there's more than one, but like my main prescreening test was when I called them. To follow up with there, because what I did is I hired both of these guys as I put some ads on Craigslist and. On Facebook. Two or three guys that I hired when they messaged me back, right when I called them, they either answered the phone or if it went to voicemail they texted me back and then called me back within a few minutes. I thought, That's it. This is the guy I want to hire. If I call somebody, they don't answer the phone. I leave a message or I just texted him, Hey, I got your voicemail, call me back. And they don't call me back within. 15 minutes to 30 minutes, whatever. No, I'm not interested in hiring them, because what's going to happen if I spend a bunch of money on marketing and this guy gets calls and it takes him a day to call people back and then they don't do it right. So like both of these guys made a lot of money together. The two guys that I'm thinking of, in particular, Trey and Rick, we made a ton of money together, did a bunch of deals because these guys are accessible. I know if I called them today, they would answer their phones or they would call me back right away.

Joe: So my main my main point in sharing all of this is if you're in business and you're if you're in business to make money, then learn to answer the phone. Or if you can't answer the phone, get somebody who can you can hire call centers that can answer phones for you. You can hire virtual assistants that can answer phones for you. And if somebody calls you and you missed a call or they leave a voicemail texting back and just say, hey, sorry I missed you, I'm tied up right now. I'll call you back as soon as I can. I can't tell you how many deals we've done. And I talk about this, a lot of my partners, I feel like I'm beating a dead horse. I can't tell you how many deals we've done with sellers and with investors. Buyers, private investors, when they say, you guys, you're the only ones who answer your phones. I want to do business with you because I know if I call you, you will answer your phones. All of this fancy systems and technology, you know, I love FreedomSoft. I use it all the time. I think it's really important that you use it. But like, you can have the most amazing, awesome CRM in the world and it won't matter hill of beans if you don't answer the phones or you don't call sellers back right away. One of the powerful things about FreedomSoft is that you can set it up when that somebody calls, it goes to voicemail, it sends them a text back right away. Hey, sorry I missed you. I'm. I'm on the other line. I'll call you right back for our vacant land deals. We tell them, Hey, thanks for calling. What was the letter reference idea on that letter? And we'll send you an offer right away and then we can also text him back. Okay, great. We got your offer ready. What's your email address? We'll send you an email it to you. That's just a different strategy for houses, though. Definitely. You need to be answering the phones and calling sellers back. Simple business one on one. The money. Your money is made on the phone. It really is. So anyway. Your takeaway from this? Well, if you want to be a roofing siding contractor and you expect to get business after calling people back three days later, it's not going to happen. And maybe the guy doesn't need my business. Maybe he's super busy already and it's like he's already busy. That's good for him and he doesn't really need new business. And you know, it's not like I'm going to hold a grudge against him and not forgive him or whatever, like, okay, man, that's cool. Grace to you. I forgive you because he is really apologetic on his voicemail, but I'm not going to call him back. I'm just. Yeah, it's. It's it's a bad sign of things to come. If I'm going to be working for a contractor that is hard to get a hold of. I want a contractor to work with. That answers my phone calls, returns my calls, can answer my texts and things like that. It's the same with my landscaper right now. I pay this guy a lot of money. He may not think so, but I do. I well, I think he does realize how much I pay him because when I call him and text him, he's real quick to respond because there's the other guys like know that I could give my business to and would love to work for me. I got three acres that I pay these guys to mow. What am I going to tell you? How much it costs. But I spend an ungodly amount of money. I just it's horrible. But like, if I was going to do it myself, it's going to take it's going to take me all day to do my lawn and these guys.

Joe: Well, anyway, my point is, I give this guy a lot of money because he's responsive and he answers his phone or his text messages or his emails. All right, guys, that's it. Appreciate your real simple trick here. If you want to do more business, if you want to do more deals. Answer the phones. I remember what I was going to say and there was a guy talking about fancy creams and all that. This is important. I know this guy in Saint Louis who is one of the biggest wholesalers in town. Like, he just does a lot of deals and his phone, it's always on him, right? For most people, it is. But when a seller calls him on any of his direct mail campaigns that he does or any of his marketing, he has a special phone number that gives a special ringtone on his phone. Guess why this guy does so many deals? He just answers his phone whenever he gets a call. No matter who's he's talking to, he just answers the phone. And he doesn't have to have he doesn't have fancy creams. He just he has a pad of paper in his car. When a seller calls from his direct mail, he answers the phone, get some basic information. This is great. Let me do some research. I'll get back to you. He asks him some simple questions and that's it. But he does so many deals because he does what nobody else is willing to do it. It's a competitive market, but it's easy to stand out with your competition when you do what your competition is not doing. Like business one on one. Answer the phones. Call sellers back. All right. So I was going to talk about that guy. I forget his name. This real simple guy doesn't have fancy tools and systems and software, but he just does a lot of deals and makes a lot of money. He does everything from his phone. He's got an assistant, so he's constantly messaging his assistant with, Hey, send this seller this offer, put it on my calendar to go meet them. Go ahead and send them an offer. Send them a follow up, add them to our because he does have a database, but it's his assistant that is updating it. Your money's made on the phone. So that's it, guys. All right. Appreciate you all. See you. Take care. Bye.

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