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Effectively Using Testimonials at MX1  The “Oprah Effect” – Effectively Using Testimonials in Real Estate for Extra Income – by Dana Sparks

Yeah yeah… you’ve heard it from Day 1 that you are to solicit referrals for easy business in real estate but are you doing this?  Is it effective? How literally are you taking this concept?  When you are a newly licensed agent, your “sphere of Influence” is absolutely the WORST source of business for you despite what every real estate new agent training program teaches!  Of course you are going to have your core group of raving fans who will support you in every way possible but for the most part, you will not get business as a new agent from those who already know you!  Think about it…. they know you relative to your former occupation and do not yet relate to you as a sharp agent who will protect their biggest investment!  Additionally, they interact with you in one realm of your life and don’t necessarily want you to know all the ins & outs of their finances.  After you have been in the business a while, then absolutely your sphere of influence and database of past clients is a fabulous source of business for you if you “work it” consistently and systematically.

This article, however, is not about working your database.  This article is more about the effective use of testimonials aka the “Oprah Effect.”  When Oprah Winfrey’s show was on television daily, one of her regular shows was her “Favorite Things.”  She would talk about (& give away) an item, book, etc. of a product or service that she had personally used and liked.  As soon as Oprah declared an item as one of her “favorite things,” the sales of that item skyrocketed!!!  If you think about, ANY celebrity endorsement of a good or service typically enhances the sale of that item!  Take advantage of that phenomenon and start garnering and using endorsements of YOUR real estate services if you want to see your sales skyrocket!

In general, people feel more comfortable about a person, product, restaurant, etc. if someone else says it’s good or recommends it – even if they don’t even know that 3rd party!  For example, how many times have you gone out to eat and you ask the server what they recommend or like?  How on earth do you know if they have similar tastes as you do?  They could simply recommend the most expensive item on the menu!  How many reviews do you read of hotels, restaurants, etc. before going there.  What about moving to a new area and needing a beauty salon…. sometimes you’ll go up to a complete stranger and ask them who does their hair!  It is human nature to seek endorsement and approval from someone else prior to embarking on something new!

Use this to your advantage!  Every time you get a new client or customer, ask them to write a testimonial for you!  If they are not sure what to say, then simply write your own testimonial and ask them to sign it if they agree!  Then pepper ALL of your marketing and advertising with these comments (or excerpts of comments) proclaiming what an amazing agent you are!  You will absolutely make your clients feel more comfortable and confident with you and will sign them to Listing Agreements & Buyer Brokerage Agreements quicker than without a 3rd party endorsement!  Be willing to give a potential NEW client the name and number of a previous client.  Include these written testimonial letters in your Pre-List packages and in your Buyer Consultation materials!  Learn to create your OWN “Oprah Effect” to earn extra income this year!

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