Is a Sphere of Influence Approach Enough in Today’s Market?


posted by on Prospecting & SOI, Reflections From a Difficult Market

First, allow me to apologize for using that tired phrase “Today’s Market.” Real estate is most certainly local, so “Today’s Market” in Denver is much different from Today’s Market in Detroit, Dallas or Des Moines. I get that. But, for the sake of argument (or discussion), let’s just assume that in most US real estate markets, “Today’s” is not as much as fun as “a Few Years Ago’s.” Deal?soi

I’m just wrapping up the Savvy Prospector 12-week course, which was a live online program that helped real estate agents (and a few loan officers) create, maintain and nurture an effective prospecting strategy, which of course included a heavy dose of SOI. (Hey, it was my show and that’s what I believe in).  As always happens when I teach, I learn. Perhaps even as much as my students.

What did I learn from The Savvy Prospector program?

Well, I’m not sure if this lesson came from the program or simply from being out there in the world selling real estate, but I’ve decided that in “Today’s Market“, SOI alone is NOT enough to maintain the lifestyle I’d grown accustomed to. Now, before you (depending on your frame of mind) gloat and smugly say “I told ya so,” or conversely, burst into tears with disappointment, allow me to continue.

In the good old days (prior to “Today’s” Market), buyers and sellers were all over the place. Everyone knew someone who trying to buy a house (and getting outbid) or who had just sold their house with multiple offers. People were amazed at the equity that had built up in their recently-purchased properties. Anyone with a toolbox fancied him or herself a real estate investor. In other words, real estate was a hot, POSITIVE topic of conversation. All you really had to do was get your cute little backside out there in the world and you could pretty easily drum up a prospect or two.

In my first year back in 1996-97, I implemented a take-a-friend-to-lunch campaign which was wildly successful. I got a lead and usually a closing from every single lunch. Like I said… everyone knew someone who was thinking about “doing” some real estate. It was practically shooting fish in a barrel. Eat some sushi, sell some houses.

Today – eh – not so much. For various reasons we’re all familiar with, people simply aren’t buying and selling homes in the volumes of years past. Real estate is NOT the hot, positive topic it used to be and I’ll bet many of you have faced that sympathetic look when you tell someone you sell real estate for a living.

So, what’s a cold-call phobic to do? Just get over the fear of cold-calling or otherwise pestering people for business?


Stay tuned… I’m outta room on this blog. But don’t fret – those of you who favor a softer approach to building your business don’t have to abandon that approach until Tomorrow’s Market arrives! You can continue to be who you are and experience the success you desire.

I’ll tell you how tomorrow!

*SOI = Sphere of Influence = building your business based on the personal relationships in your life.