Branding Real Estate Thought Leadership

As I have discussed frequently over the years, creating a thought leadership platform is a crucial task for investors who want to achieve success in the real estate industry.

Doing so is not easy, however. Far from it. There is an overwhelming number of voices competing with you—some espousing good advice, others doing the opposite. Breaking through the cacophony and directing attention to your opportunities and ideas requires a lot of work.

Some of that work may come naturally to you. Some of it may require you to step out of your comfort zone. If organizing meetups and hosting real estate conferences are foreign territory for you, this is a chance to step up and grow, because being a leader requires you to get outside, meet new people, and command a room.

Additionally, in today’s market where so much can be accomplished online, I strongly believe that bringing your real estate leadership online is necessary to reach your potential. Indeed, writing blogs, marketing yourself on social media, creating YouTube videos, and composing newsletters can take you a long way.

All this may seem daunting, but I promise you it is worth the effort. By establishing myself as a thought leader, I have enjoyed many key benefits. I have built new friendships and business relationships. By constantly providing valuable and free information, I have kept my name in the minds of top real estate entrepreneurs. Moreover, I have been able to construct a global network, one that leads to new connections every day—even when I am not working.

Of course, leadership in the real estate world takes a lot of time to develop. To begin that journey, check out my posts below, and be sure to check out the Best Ever Show for daily investing advice.

Six Characteristics of a Great Leader

Six Characteristics of a Great Leader

When you see the word “leader” what pops into your mind? The President? The CEO of a billion-dollar company? The head coach of a championship sports team? A military general?

Most people have a similar concept of what and who a leader is. Determining the similar characteristics between this archetype can help us as commercial real estate investors build wealth, build a legacy, and do more good in the world.

Brandon Turner of BiggerPockets was one of the featured speakers at BEC2021. In his presentation, he provided the top six characteristics of a great leader, as well as how to become a better leader in your commercial real estate investing business.

 

A Great Leader is a Quitter.

“Find a way to quit your job as soon as possible by paying an expert to do it.”

There is a reason that all successful companies have countless Executives, Presidents, VPs, Directors, Associates, Analysts, etc. under the leadership of one CEO. It’s because great leaders work on their business, not in the business. And running a commercial real estate company is no different.

Sure, when you are first starting out, it might be just you and a business partner performing all the job functions. But a great leader hires expert team members to focus on the day-to-day tasks while they focus on the overall direction of the company. Or in the words of Brandon, “Your job is to be a general”. As a general, you lead the expert soldiers under your command into battle.

A Great Leader is a Cutter.

“Only focus on the one or two things you need to be doing.”

Any job function in a commercial real estate business can be broken down into a “dollar-per-hour” task. Every hour of work on said task results in X amount of dollars of revenue for the business.  Once you have hired expert team members to perform the lower dollar-per-hour activities, it frees up your time to focus on the higher dollar-per-hour activities. In fact, a great leader will focus on one or two activities with the highest dollar-per-hour output.

For example, a great leader will focus on creating multi-year goals for how to scale their commercial real estate company. Then, they may formulate an overall strategic plan for accomplishing these goals. But rather than acting on the strategic plan themselves, they assign the implementation of the strategic plan to an expert team member.

A Great Leader is a Caster.

“Write down the vision for where you want your company to go.”

One of the things Spartan Investment Group attributed to their ability to be named one of the nation’s fastest-growing companies by Inc. Magazine was their culture. A commercial real estate company’s vision is the cornerstone of its culture.

A vision is an image of where the company wants to see itself in the future. It will involve what success looks like to you, your team members, and your customers, as well as the behaviors you will need in your company to realize your definition of success. As a leader, you are responsible for casting a vision that is inspiring to your team members and customers, and you must ensure that you and your team members are living out the vision each day.

A Great Leader is a Coach.

“Ask the right questions to improve the performance of your team.”

In sports, when a team performs badly, the head coach is usually the first person to get fired and replaced. On the other hand, the greatest coaches win games and championships year-after-year, decade-after-decade, even though the team consistently changes. College sports is the perfect example with complete turnover every four years. That is because the coach is one of the keys to success. One aspect of great coaching (and great leadership) is the ability to get the most out of a team.

As a commercial real estate investor, a great way to maximize the performance of your team is to conduct frequent performance reviews – ideally once a quarter. A best practice is to ask each team member to analyze their own performance – what they did well, what projects they are proud of, and what they can improve upon. You should provide them with similar feedback – here’s what you did well and here’s what you can improve on. Then, come up with goals or tasks for how to improve their performance over the next quarter based on the combination of your and their feedback.

A Great Leader is a Scout.

“Find and attract top talent.”

Continuing with the sports analogy: Did you know that the University of Alabama’s football team spent 12.3%, or $2.6 million, of their budget on recruiting in 2019? Strong leadership is just one ingredient to success. The other is the ability to find and attract top talent.

Attracting and finding top talent presumes you know what “top talent” is. According to Real Estate InvestHER founder Liz Faircloth, the two biggest mistakes commercial real estate investors make when building a team are a lack of alignment and a lack of diversity. Top talent must align with your culture (mission, vision, and values) because when they don’t, they tend to get fired or quit, which wastes your company’s time and resources. Top talent also has diverse personalities and skillsets. Another important aspect of top talent is their character. Most skills and competencies can be taught, but character cannot. They are either a good person or they are not. Also, top talent has been successful because of skill, not luck, and a deep dive into their track record is required to determine which is the case.

The most important thing to know about attracting top talent is to make sure you are living out your culture. Don’t say one thing and do another, because top talent who were attracted to your company will quickly quit when they realize you say one thing but do another.

A Great Leader is a Student.

“Recognize you don’t know what you are doing and that you need to continually grow.”

Some interesting statistics: Tony Robbins read 700 books in seven years. Warren Buffet spends five to six hours reading daily. Bill Gates reads 50 books a year. Mark Cuban reads for three hours daily. Why are the world’s richest people reading so much? Because great leaders are continually growing.

Another great way to grow as a commercial real estate investor, in addition to reading, is to ask for feedback. However, due to the “success paradox,” the more success you achieve, the less feedback you will receive from others, which may stunt your growth. Therefore, a tactic to overcome this success paradox is to ask for anonymous feedback from your team using a Google Form. Also, find a few people in your circle of influence (the best would be a spouse or significant other) and ask for candid feedback.

What Makes a Great Leader?

A great leader focuses on the most important tasks and outsources the rest to expert team members.

A great leader casts an inspiring vision for themselves, their team, and their customers.

A great leader helps their team constantly improve and attracts the best of the best.

A great leader is also constantly improving themselves by being a student of their industry and of life.

 

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Five Evolutionary Ideas for Your Business

Five Evolutionary Ideas for Your Business

Joe Fairless, the co-founder of Ashcroft Capital and founder of Best Ever Commercial Real Estate, was one of the featured speakers at this year’s Best Ever Conference (BEC2021), which he also created and hosts. Ashcroft Capital has over $1 billion in assets under management, and the Best Ever brand includes the world’s longest-running daily real estate investing podcast, three best-selling books, a daily blog, an annual conference, and more.

Joe has learned countless lessons managing over a billion dollars in real estate and a popular real estate brand. In his BEC2021 presentation, Joe shared these five evolutionary ideas that he has implemented in his real estate business to continue to grow.

 

1. Protect yourself from the biggest liability you’re currently not paying enough attention to.

For 99% of syndicators, the biggest liability they aren’t paying attention to is compliance. Sure, they work with attorneys to create their investment documents (emails, investment summaries, PPM, operating agreement, subscription agreement, etc.) and entities. They will also ask their attorneys questions as they arise.

The liability is due to the questions that aren’t asked. Since most syndicators aren’t legal experts, they don’t know the right questions to ask their attorneys, which puts them at risk.

Joe’s solution:

Hire an in-house compliance person. This is a legal expert who knows what questions to ask to cover your blindside.

2. Bring the best out of your team.

When you are starting a new company, it is usually just you, your business partner, and maybe a few other people, like virtual or executive assistants. Job duties aren’t very defined since everyone is wearing a lot of hats.

Eventually, as you begin to grow, you bring on more team members and roles and responsibilities become more defined. This person is responsible for asset management, this person for investor communications, this person for underwriting, etc.

When it is just you and your business partner, compensation is usually tied directly to the number and size of deals completed. But once you become more like a company and bring on salaried employees, how each team member’s performance impacts the success of the business begins to blur. Also, their compensation isn’t directly tied to the number or size of deals. As a result, what motivates you and your business partner/s isn’t the same thing that motivates your salaried employees (i.e., the number and size of deals).

Joe’s solution:

Create a single KPI for each team member. That way, they know exactly what is expected of them and are motivated to exceed that KPI in order to receive a bonus.

3. Enjoy better deal flow, deliver better and more stable returns, and create more sanity.

Most, if not all, syndicators start off raising money for individual deals. They usually have a list of passive investors who’ve previously invested in a deal or expressed interest in investing. Once a deal is identified, the opportunity is presented to this list. While the syndicators secure commitments, they work with their attorneys to create the deal documents and form the entities. After the deal is purchased, the search for a new deal begins, and the process beings anew.

There are a few drawbacks when it comes to scaling a business by raising money for one deal at a time. First, it limits your deal flow, because you are usually hyper-focused on a unique asset class in a single market. Second, it is riskier for passive investors, because their entire investment is used to fund a single opportunity. Lastly, there is more pressure on you, because of the race to raise all the money between contract and close.

Joe’s solution:

Create a fund instead of doing single asset purchases. Creating a fund will increase your deal flow because you can be more flexible with the types of assets you target. It generates better and less risky returns because funds are spread across multiple deals and markets and less capital sits idle. And it creates more sanity for you, because the money is committed before a deal is identified.

For more on the advantages of a fund, click here.

4. Get better results on your thought leadership platform and in your commercial real estate business.

Something we focus on a lot at the Best Ever brand is the importance of a thought leadership platform. It is one of the best ways to build a reputation as an expert in your industry, which increases your credibility and ability to attract passive investors.

When you are first starting out as a syndicator, you are likely the main (or only) source of content. You are writing, editing, and posting the blogs. You are planning and hosting the meetups and conferences. You are scheduling guests, recording, editing, and posting the podcasts. You are the owner of one or more social media accounts. However, as your brand begins to grow, it can become a full-time endeavor. Eventually, you will get to the point where the time spent on maintaining and growing your brand is taking away from your focus on the real estate business. Either the brand suffers, or the business suffers.

Joe’s solution:

Transition your thought leadership platform to other people once it matures. This is more than just outsourcing editing. This means having people who create the content, as well as an editorial director to manage all the moving pieces. They will focus on growing your brand, so you can focus on growing your real estate investing business.

5. Overcome the success paradox.

Feedback from others is one of the best ways to improve and become a better real estate entrepreneur and person. However, the more successful you become in business, the less likely you will receive constructive criticism from your team members.

Joe’s solution:

Ask three people in your circle to provide you with honest feedback. Also, identify an event that occurred at least a month ago that didn’t go according to plan and think about how you were responsible for it taking place. Lastly, create a Google Form and ask your team members to provide you with anonymous feedback.

The Five Billion-Dollar Business Ideas:

Number 1: reduce your liability by hiring an in-house compliance person.

Number 2: set clear expectations and provide motivation for your team members with individualized KPIs.

Number 3: create a fund.

Number 4: focus on your investing business and hire others to maintain and grow your thought leadership platform.

Number 5: find three trusted colleagues to provide you with feedback, analyze past events, and ask for anonymous feedback from team members.

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Sacrificing Short-Term Satisfaction for Long-Term Happiness

If you are into investing and want to make the most from your effort, you must balance short-term satisfaction and long-term reward. Otherwise, you get stuck in a downward spiral from which escape seems impossible. The good news is that you can overcome that problem. Learning the difference and why you should keep an eye on the long-term is vital.

You achieve much more and gain true fulfillment, and you will know you did the right thing. You must explore both sides and gain a true understanding of how these concepts work. Even if you don’t get the outcome you want right away, learning about short- and long-term satisfaction goes a long way toward your goals. The key is to understand how your brain works and to craft a solid plan. With those things in mind, you should have no trouble moving forward.

Active Investor: Learn How Your Brain Works

Learn how your brain works for the best results. When it comes to short- and long-term satisfaction, you deal with the emotional and logical side of your brain. Your emotional side wants a reward right away. In investing, this happens when you want a path that leads to a faster payout. The logical side of your brain, on the other hand, wants you to wait longer for the larger payout. Also, most people look only at their short-term goals by default. You must train your mind to look at the benefits of overlooking short-term gratification in favor of long-term reward.

Make a Plan

Having a plan is vital. Many people go through life without a solid sense of direction. If you don’t have a plan, you have no way of knowing if you are moving in the right direction. You have no way of tracking your progress or knowing where you are. On the other hand, a solid plan keeps you on track and lets you monitor your progress. Every active investor needs a plan, and creating one is a powerful step in the right direction.

Think about what you would like to achieve over the coming months and years, and you won’t have trouble reaching your desired outcome. How much profit would you like to earn over the next five years? What steps should you take to get there? Make an outline of your plan for the best possible results, and you won’t have to worry about too many unneeded complications.

Don’t overthink your plan at the start. You can always change it as you move forward, and most people do. Review your plan all the time to make sure you are on track to reach your goals. This helps you maintain your motivation and ensures you don’t forget anything along the way.

Write Down Your Goals

Writing your goals down is another vital part of the process. Consider all the things you would like to achieve over the coming days, weeks, months and years, and you will have no problem staying on track. Create two lists if you would like to get the most from your effort. The first list should contain all the goals you would like to achieve within the next few weeks or months, and the second list contains your goals for the coming years and decades.

Your goals don’t have to stay the same for decades. If you learn new information or face unexpected issues, your long-term goals can change. Also, you could experience something that changes your mind about what you would like to achieve over the long run. The important part is having a solid starting point so that you know where to go and whether you are getting there.

Do your best to relate your short- and long-term goals. For example, if you would like to make a large purchase over the next several years, putting enough money to the side each month is a great short-term goal. Reaching your short-term goals gives you enough motivation to keep pushing yourself forward, and you won’t have trouble getting the outcome for which you have been hoping.

Consider Both Sides

If you want to achieve the most from your effort, look at both sides of the situation. Short-term satisfaction might be tempting, but it’s not as good as what you could achieve over the long run. Consider that many people get into active investing to make fast money, so they turn to short-term investments. Depending on where you are and what you would like to achieve, this might not be a bad choice.

But you should always take an objective look at both sides. Consider what you could gain by opting for long-term satisfaction instead of short-term gain, and you will be glad you did. Waiting for the long-term reward is not always easy. But you get a much greater benefit if you do it.

The path you take depends on your resources and why you got into investing in the first place. In some cases, you can take and enjoy both paths. Make several investments that pay off quickly, but you can also make at least one long-term investment that grows over the years.

Start Small if You Must

If you are just now learning about these concepts, setting long-term goals is not going to be easy. The way you act and behave conditions your brain. Consider someone who gets up every morning at 5:00 a.m. If that person gets a new job and no longer must get up that early, they still wake up at 5:00 a.m. even without an alarm.

If you spend a long time focused on short-term gratification, you must train your brain to look at the long term. Begin by slowly transitioning your mindset toward the long run, and you will get there without too many problems.

Look Toward the Future

Looking toward the future is critical if you would like to achieve the outcome for which you have been looking. Imagine you are several years in the future. How will that future look if you don’t work toward your long-term goals, and how will it look if you do work toward them?

Looking at the future this way is a powerful step in the right direction. Many people view the future as so far away that they don’t believe it’s important. But your stance changes if you vividly imagine your future. You know you will get there one day, and you get the required motivation to make it happen.

Reward Yourself

Working all the time and never taking time off causes you to burn out. Many investors with an eye for the future dedicate too much time and attention to working all the time. This path might look appealing at first glance, but you can lose your motivation faster than you expect. Avoid that setback by rewarding yourself as often as you can. Your rewards don’t have to be big. Try doing one thing you enjoy each day, and you keep stress under control and maintain your motivation to keep moving forward.

Review Your Progress

If you are serious about sticking to your plan, don’t forget to track your progress. Depending on the size of your company, review your progress at least four times each year. Look at your plan to see if you are on track for reaching your short- and long-term goals. If you are not, see what you can do to catch up so that you don’t stay behind.

Checking your progress from time to time is a powerful way to ensure you don’t go too far off the path you selected. Noticing that you are not on track is not always enough to reach the outcome you want and deserve. If you would like to avoid similar problems in the future, ask yourself why you are not on track and what you can do about it. You can then make the required changes to prevent additional problems from taking place.

Active Investing: Congratulate Yourself

Each time you complete a difficult goal, remember to congratulate yourself on doing the job right. Take some time to appreciate the effort you put into your goals, and you will feel much better about your journey. Depending on what you have achieved, reward yourself with a nice dinner or a vacation.

If you closed a major deal, buy yourself a new vehicle or home. Congratulating yourself is the smart way to maintain your motivation and remember how much progress you have been making. No matter what you would like to achieve, you take your results to a new level before you know it. The right approach gives you a great combination of short-term reward and long-term satisfaction.

Tracking your results ensures you are on track and that you don’t fall behind, giving you peace of mind. Review your progress so that you don’t make too many mistakes along the way, and you will be glad you did. Making the transition in your mind might not be easy when you begin.

Although you might have trouble getting started, things get easier when you gain traction. You will make your life much better and take your profit to where you have always wanted it.

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Top Takeaways From Every BEC2021 Day 2 Speaker

The Top 10 Things to Ask Before Investing

Ryan Gibson, Spartan Investment Group

How to find great operators

  • Online:(506 investor group, forms D)
  • Networking
  • Funds: fund of funds
  • Syndication groups: meetups groups
  • Projects: something you see in your area because most are syndicated
  • Referrals: from other operators

Your interview with the operator

  • Ask open ended questions: When interviewing operators, see if they are interested in what you have to say
  • Write down notes
  • Keep a log of operator Q&A
  • Portfolio projects
  • Referrals
  • Property location

Are they an operator or syndicator? Determine what role the company plays. How are they compensated, how are they aligned with you? Are they aligned with the success of the project?

Tell me about a deal gone bad? This is Ryan’s favorite question. Having no deals that have gone bad indicates low experience or a lie while having deals that have gone bad helps you judge the grit of the syndicator. 

What is their mission, vision, and values? Does their mission, vision, values, align with yours? Ask them to give an example of how they’ve used their values recently.

Who is on the team? Are they a one-man band or do they have a deep bench? Are they vertically integrated? Are they using the fees they charge to hire a great team or to pay themselves?

What is their core business model? Selling education? Working elsewhere? Focused on deals? Gurus?

What is your investor communication plan? Ask for last three communications to get a better understanding of their communication style. Is the plan in writing? Can you verify property performance against projections?

What is the performance of their portfolio?

  • Historical performance (proforma vs actual): comparison is more important than absolute return since it gives you the right context
  • Was it project level IRR or investor IRR: total project may look better than investor level
  • Consistent metrics: Ryan likes to use equity multiple and how long it took gives true time tested return, IRR might be misleading or not the best metric

Obtain reference and conduct a background check

  • Don’t ask for a reference, find your own, because no one gives bad references
  • Find others that have invested in the company
  • BBB, Google reviews, 506 Group, etc. – search for the company name and name of the principles

Insurance

  • Does SEC attorney provide E&O insurance to cover for lawsuits
  • What exclusions are included on their title insurance?
  • Is there property insurance at least from an A rated Carrier?

Decision to exit

  • What would make an operator exit early? What is their justification for selling?
  • Have they sold early in the past? How many time and, how did the actual returns compare to projections?
  • How do they brief investors?

Market-Driven Strategies for Investment and Operations

Greg Willett, Real Page Inc.

Where we are at right now

  • We suffered sizable job losses which have impacted real estate market. However, occupancy rates are at healthy level and we’ve experienced rent growth in some places. Overall, there is huge variability in results in one part of the country and product niche to another – the highest I have ever seen.
  • Best rent growth is about 8% – Inland Empire, Sacramento, Virginia Beach, Memphis, Midwest
  • Gateway metros are really struggling – Bay area and metro New York: rents cut 15% to 20%

Three Investing Strategies

  1. Throttle up your Sun Belt assets. Simply getting in front of renter demand can help fuel performance successReally solid demand results across state of Texas, Carolinas, Tennessee, Atlanta, Phoenix, and Denver. Be careful in Florida markets, because there are a lot of tourism centers. Places like Tampa, Jacksonville are doing well. Don’t rule out the Midwest. Demand is not as strong as it is in the Sunbelt but low supply will drive demand.
  2. Don’t bank on a flight-to-quality. Rent discounts at top-tier product are not delivering move-up renters to the extent experienced during previous economic stumbles: Renters have had the tendency to move down and downgrade to class B and C to save money.
  3. Explore a low capital value add strategy. Lower price points are boosting occupancy and supporting resident retention at lease expiration: Focus on maintenance issues and appearance but hold off on bells and whistles to keep property more affordable for bigger group of renters. Turn around on a vacant unit is faster for lower quality upgrade and leaves money on table for a future buyer.

Three Operational Strategies

  1. It’s the right time to adjust the recipe for your operational “secret sauce.” Measure what’s working now: You don’t want to be doing what worked well in the past, you want to be doing what works well now. Pay attention to what young adults are doing and how it impacts the types of units that are in demand. Then determine how this impacts your marketing needs, because certain strategies are better and worse. The bottom line is to measure everything to see what is different now compared to two years ago
  2. Focus on renewals. Resident retention at initial lease expiration has gotten harder to achieve in some locations and product segments, so make it a priority to hang onto today’s best residents: There is large variability in renewal rates across the country. But the goal is to hang on to the good residents who are making payments. Taking a hit on rents on a renewal lease might be a good thing. Pay attention to the type of units with lower and higher renewal rates and ask yourself, why aren’t they renewing? Pay attention to the non-pricing factors, like maintenance and customer service.
  3. Take back control of your brand. Know what you are selling and who the target for your product and message is in this marketplace: The overall message should focus on service, appearance, ease of living a the property, the location – don’t focus on price.

The Devastating Impact of Climate Change on Your Real Estate Investments in the Next 10 Years

Neal Bawa, Grocapitus

Impact of climate change in 2020 and questions to think about

  • 2020 had $95B in damage from climate disasters
  • What will happen to your investments when taxes increase to pay for massive sea walls?
  • Where will the money come from to fix Texas’s power grid?
  • In California, the six greatest wildfires happened in 2020, and will double in five years. How will this impact California cap rates?
  • Cities with sea level rise exposure are already priced at a 7% discount

Many climate risks may become uninsurable: Insurance companies are starting to buy climate data from Moody’s and creating city-by-city insurance plans.

Climate data is being used to downgrade entire cities: When a city is downgraded, their ability to borrow goes down, making it harder to fund re-construction projects. As a result, people move out, and it continues to spiral.

The end of the 30-year mortgage: Full cities may change to 20 year or 15 year mortgages options

The cities with no climate risk will be the next gold rush.

Overall, the people who set ratings, cap rates, insurance rates, mortgage terms, as well as cities are taking climate risk into account, and so should you.

The State of Fundraising in 2021: Key Risk Areas for Capital Raisers in Today’s Regulatory Environment

H. Gregory Baker, Lowenstein Sandler LLP

Capital raising regulations have been relaxed over the past presidential administrations, but that is changing.

Section 5 of Securities Act: One of the most important rules in the federals securities laws. In 2020, 1/3rd of all SEC enforcement cases concerned offering of securities. The SEC does not need to prove that you intended to violate the rule: they just need to show that you violated the rule,

A security must be registered or have an exemption. The common exemptions are:

  • section 4(a)(2) of securities act, private placement exemption
  • Rule 506(b) of Reg D, private placement safe harbor
  • Rule 506(c) of Reg D, general solicitation
  • Reg. Crowdfunding, 
  • Intrastate offerings

The consequences for violating Section 5 can be severe. The investors can get their money back from you. The SEC can fine you. And your reputation will be harmed.

How people or companies get tripped up on Section 5

  • Relying on 506(c) but failing to ensure that your investors are accredited
  • Relying on 506(b) but you advertise
  • Relying on intrastate exemption but selling to investors in multiple states

Expect to see more of these cases under new leadership. Gregory’s advice is to work with your attorney to ensure you follow rules, and document how you followed rules.

How to Scale Your Syndication Business

Michael Blank, Nighthawk Equity

Who should consider building a thought leadership platform? Anyone raising money for real estate. Anyone who has already raised some money 1 to 1. Anyone who is ready to scale capital raising ability. Anyone who wants to raise millions of dollars in a few days.

What will a thought leadership platform achieve? Automatically attracts the right investor, raise more money so you can do bigger deals, create more revenue, invest revenue back into market to do more deals, effortlessly scale and serve your investors

Three pillars of a thought leadership platform

Attract:

Identify your ideal avatar: in order to attract the “right” audience who is interested in what you have to offer, you have to identify your ideal potential investor

Capture leads: when you attract the attention of your ideal avatar you need to know who they are. The best way to do that is to offer them a “Lead Magnet” in return for their email addresses

Develop:

Serve and lead: Serve your audience and earn their trust with valuable free content that educates them about investing in syndications. Serving = content = trust

Lead them on their investing journey with continuous content

Scale: Make a compelling offer that generates revenue and reinvest a portion of your revenue to attract more leads

How to automatically attract more passive investors

Create a lead magnet: When someone downloads a lead magnet, they get tagged in system as “downloaded”, and put on email list to receive educational emails

Join the club: After downloading the lead magnet, they are invited to fill out a detailed questionnaire, and get tagged as “joined”.

Schedule a call: Included is the option to schedule a call after filling out the questionnaire. After the call, they get tagged as “deal ready” and are now prepared to receive upcoming opportunities

Follow up automation: Automatically send follow-up emails to people tagged with “downloaded” and “joined” until they move forward in the process and set up a phone call or unsubscribe.

Multiplying Your Real Estate Portfolio

Deborah Razo, Women’s Real Estate Network

The secret success system blueprint: find success habits, cultivate habits through repetition, achieve mastery. This is a system that deals with growing systems and expanding your mindset.

The success cycle: potential, action, results, belief. The more we believe in our potential, the more action we will take and the more results we will achieve. The more results we achieve, the more we believe in our potential.

How to cultivate resourcefulness: Write down a problem and come up with three effective, intelligent, and viable solutions. Because one choice is no choice. Two choices is a dilemma. But three options and you are in the space of choices

Accelerate Your Returns Through Construction Management

Ashley Wilson, Bar Down Investments

A team member with construction knowledge is critical to maximizing the investment’s returns

Get creative: There is more than one way to solve a problem, so your focus and end goal should drive your solutions

Balance between evaluation & equity: Your focus should be on increasing equity, not the evaluation.

Time is money: Figuring out ways to decrease the time construction takes will maximize your return on investment

Building a Social Media Content Engine

David Toupin, Obsidian Capital & Real Estate Lab

Social media = attention = influence = income

Where to start

  • Focus on 1-3 platforms at first to get traction
  • Create Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube account to start, or pick one or two that you like and want to go with
  • Block out one day every week to record a few hours of content to stock pile content and post throughout the week
  • Block out 2 hours every day to post and interact with followers: respond to every comment and direct message 

How to create a social media content engine

Create lots of content one or two times per month: Either by yourself of hire a videographer for one or two sessions each month, and upload all the content to a DropBox folder

Hire an editor to create a content database: Use month’s worth of content to create longer videos, shorter videos, and pictures with caption. The goal is to create at least 10 social media posts per one hour of video content

Hire a content manager: The content manager will use the content database to compile one month’s worth of social media posts.

Determine what the focus of your content is going to be: All posts should be directed towards achieving your end goal

You approve the posts: Once the content manager has compiled a month’s worth of posts, you review and approve

Schedule the posts: After you’ve approved the posts, the content manger schedules them throughout the next month.

Rinse and repeat

Top social media tips

  • The number one secret to social media is consistency
  • The number two secret is focusing your niche
  • Be yourself, people will recognize if you’re not being real
  • Interact with your audience
  • Tell your story
  • You will automatically attract people that like the same things you like. That’s how the algorithm works
  • You do not need a fancy camera or equipment. Any modern cell phone is sufficient
  • Don’t worry about your current audience. Create your desired audience over time – either create a new account or start on your personal account
  • Don’t worry about what people might think about you. Have fund with it and be yourself
  • Comment on posts of other big influencers

UTH Workforce Housing: Pairing Private Capital with New Construction Workforce Housing

Scott Choppin, Urban Pacific group of Companies

What is workforce housing?

  • Built-to-rent, non-standard MF in historical terms – SF and attached townhome rental product
  • Below market rate rents
  • Housing for working families at 80% to 120% of median income: service sector/blue collar, large multigenerational family groups with 4-7 people
  • Housing for professional “location agnostic” roommate groups working remotely: location agnostic and use extra bedroom for remote work
  • Locations: urbanized suburbs of most major cities, close to amenities but not central business district

Why chose workforce housing as an investment?

Recession resilient

  • Deeply undersupplied
  • Multi-earner households (families or roommates), 
  • Multi-generational households (reduces poverty rates)
  • Work-from-home is accelerating absorption and rental rates

Sticky, long-term tenant base

  • Strong social networks: kids in school, family nearby
  • Economic sharing lifestyle: share income and expenses across the group
  • Naturally affordable rents without government subsidies

What is urban townhouse (UBH)? Designed and built-to-rent but lives like a house

  • Five bed/four bath, 1750 sqft.
  • Three-story townhouse
  • Two-car direct access private garage
  • Multigenerational and WFH space ground floor bedroom/bath
  • Located in existing urbanized suburban neighborhoods where families and work from home roommates want to live
  • Rent on average $3500 to $4000 per month
    • Value ratio $2 to $2.28 psf. (average 50% below market)
    • Per bedroom rent $700 per (40% to 50% below market)

Extended Stay Model – A Hidden Secret in the Hospitality Industry

Jennifer Maldonado, The Art of Raising Capital Program

Profitability and resiliency are the foundations to long-term profits.

During the pandemic, the extended stay hotel model worked well for first responders and essential workers.

Economy Extend Stay Hotels performed the best during the pandemic.

  • Top tier: occupancy is down 29.7% and average daily rates (ADR) are down 17%
  • Middle tier: occupancy is down 14.8% and ADR is down 13%
  • Economy tier: occupancy is down 3.1% and ADR is down 3.1%

Don’t chase the herd! Chase the returns!

Ash Patel, Rivershore Capital

By searching the MLS five times every day, Ash was able to know about properties before anyone else, even the brokers.

Don’t make excuses when things get hard.

As a commercial real estate landlord, your only job is to make sure that you tenant is successful: treat your tenant like a partner and they will take better care of your property

Success follows selfless acts for others.

Look for unconventional ways to by real estate.

Bringing Property Management In-House: Why, When, and How

Frank Roessler, Ashcroft Capital

Why bring property management in-house

To improve performance: The only real reason you to it. If you can’t do it better, don’t do it at all

Alignment of incentives: Move away from issues of fee-based management. No other clients of higher priority.

Improve communication: Faster awareness of property vitals. More involvement in property operations.

When to bring property management in-house

Pros and cons of bringing property management in-house day 1

  • Pros: 
    • zero disruption
    • small overhead: won’t have to build out an entire organization, which is expensive and time consuming 
    • reduced upfront costs: offices and employee benefits
  • Cons: 
    • no best practices: you will be learning on the job at the detriment of the first few properties
    • starting at a loss: one property will not cover cost of managing the property, won’t breakeven until you have a couple thousand units 
    • no industry top talent: don’t have a track record to attract best of the best

Pros and cons of bringing property management in-house when you have scale

  • Pros
    • Ability to attract top talent: people were eager to jump ship and provide a business plan
    • Starting with a profit margin: breakeven or make a little bit of money
    • Best practices: because you have the top talent
  • Cons
    • Major disruption: terminating contracts, providing notice, transition process, a million moving parts
    • Significant startup costs: hiring a full team before you even have revenue
    • Relationships can be hurt

How to bring property management in-house

  • Create a policies and procedures manual: a how-to guide for every single department and staff member in your portfolio
  • Hire a president to run the company: don’t reinvent the wheel, leverage that person’s knowledge, experience, leadership, and contacts.
  • Build out each department slowly and carefully before you take everything over: learning and development director, digital marketing director, revenue management, CFO, IT, HR, regional and area manager, regional maintenance director
  • Culture matters
  • Provide sufficient notice

Six Lessons in Becoming a Better Leader

Brandon Turner, BiggerPockets

The Four “Therefores”: Happiness and fulfillment is found through growth and achievement therefore, in order to grow, I need to focus on my superpower and less on other tasks therefore I need to hire a partner or outsource my non-superpower tasks, therefore I need to lead those people to where I desire therefore leadership is not an option for an incredible life

How to change your identity: mindset -> actions -> identity -> confidence -> actions …

You can be anything you want to be if you change your identity through your mindset actions and confidence

Brandon’s new mindset about leadership

  • My job is to be a general
  • Management is not leadership and leadership is not management
  • When you work with people you love and care for, it’s not work, it’s a beautiful life, a symbiotic relationship of mutual growth and respect
  • Leadership is the most manly of skills
  • Freedom is found through great leadership
  • Leadership is a skill

6 characteristics of a great leader

  • Quitter: find a way to quit your job as soon as possible by paying an expert to do it
  • Cutter: the one or two things you need to be doing
  • Caster: write down the vision for where you want your company to go
  • Coach: ask the right questions to improve performance of team
  • Scout: find and attract talent
  • Student: recognize you don’t know what you are doing and that you need to continually grow
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Top Takeaways From Every BEC2021 Day 1 Speaker

Four Steps to Build a Team That Lasts

Liz Faircloth, The Real Estate InvestHER

Step 1: Map out where you want to go: Determine your short-term (1 year) and long-term (3 and 5 year) goals. Define an overall vision.

Step 2: Take a personal inventory: Spend half a day figuring out everything you bring to the table from a credit (asset and liabilities), time, experience, skills, personality, and leadership perspective.

Step 3. Determine WHO you need to meet your goals and vision: Based on your business model, figure out the major roles you need to fill. Based on what you bring to the table, determine which roles you will fill and which roles you need a team member to fill

Step 4. Find people to gain alignment and diversity: The biggest mistake when building a team is lack of alignment (values, goals, expectations, entrepreneurial spirit) and lack of diversity (personality, risk, tolerance, skill set, experience). Leverage personality assessments to identify hires who complement your skills and gaps, and who are in complete alignment with your value.

Beyond the Pandemic: Adapting Investment Strategies to the New Normal

John Change, Marcus and Millichap

Vaccines are the key to the economic recovery: The amount of money in money market mutual funds and saving deposits are very high. There is the potential for $4.5 trillion to enter the economy once things are “back to normal” after the roll-out of the COVID vaccine.

Job growth and COVID: A record number of jobs were lost as 10 years worth of job growth were wiped out – 22M jobs. About half those jobs have come back. Hotels and restaurants were hit the worst and have yet to recover.

Retail and COVID: Retail was a mixed bag. It took a hit at the onset of the pandemic, hit a high after economic stimulus and has started dropping again. Restaurants, bars, electronic, and apparel sales were hit the hardest while home repairs and internet sales are at an all-time high.

Huge GDP growth forecasts: GDP is forecasted to grow between 5% and as high as 7.5% in 2021, which would be a 30+ year high.

Top myths of the pandemic

  • Huge wave of evictions are coming: rent collections are down YoY but are much better than expected due to economic stimulus
  • Widespread distress will spark significant discounting: distressed sales are 1% of total transactions, and delinquencies are well below distressed market levels
  • The retail apocalypses: rent collections on retail have surpassed expectations and are being dragged down by entertainment, restaurants, and health centers

2021 Trends

  • Class B and C multifamily: due to record levels of construction, Class A vacancy is increasing while Class B and C vacancy is at record lows
  • Self-storage: occupancy hit all time high Q3 of 2020

 

Seven Lessons Learned With $2.8 Billion of Real Estate During COVID

Jillian Helman, RealtyMogul

Lesson #1. Play defense before an economic crisis, not during a crisis: Three things to do during economic expansion to prepare for economic recessions: underwrite well and don’t do deals that don’t met your underwriting criteria; have a strong property management team in place; have open conversations with your lenders to ensure they will pick up your call during a recession.

Lesson #2. The proforma is always wrong: When creating your proforma for a new opportunity, have a minimum contingency budget of at least 10%, scale back the number of units you expect to renovate and lease, assume an exit cap rate that is 1% greater than cap rate at purchase, and increase vacancy and bad debt to stress test.

Lesson #3. Take a breath and be deliberate: Jillian’s top priorities are the health and safety of residents and team, keeping occupancy up, and shoring up cash reserves. This involved taking a deep breathe and deliberating to determine how to best focus on these priorities. She decided to halt renovations, rent increases, and all nonessential repairs.

Lesson #4. Don’t be afraid to innovate: For example, Jillian began using virtual, self-guided tours.

Lesson #5. Do experiments and test the market: In the example above where Jillian experimented with virtual tours, the conversion rate was higher than in-person tours with a leasing agent. Since the experiment works, she doubled down.

Lesson #6. Be a stellar communicator: Provide detailed monthly updates to investors, communicate what you are proactively doing, and be available and receptive to investors.

Lesson #7. Take a position: During COVID, this started by overcoming fear. Then, Jillian took an offensive position, assumed the world wasn’t ending, that the world would recover, and that data supported that investing still made sense.

What makes her afraid?

  • Silicon valley tenants/master leases with no credit quality a la We Work
  • Office with significant roll over (exception if the cash flow is strong enough to return full principal prior to roll over)
  • Retail unless it is main-and-main
  • Hospitality in all markets
  • Impact of insurance costs rising in markets like Florida and Texas
  • Modeling a refinance with Fannie Freddie debt less than a 4.5% to 5% all-in rate
  • Sitting in cash when inflation starts to rise

Where does she see opportunity?

  • Well-occupied apartments with reasonable bad debt financed with long-term fixed rate debt
  • New construction in growth markets with a late 2022/2033+ delivery
  • Growth markets – Austin, Dallas, Denver, Raleigh, Charlotte, Columbus, Phoenix, Jacksonville, Salt Lake City, Nashville
  • Office with long term credit tenants and a functional need to be in an office
  • NNN with great tenants
  • Retail at main-and-main trading at a discount
  • Not yet, but NYC, LA, Miami in 2022/2033

 

How to Bulletproof Your Mind for Extraordinary Real Estate Success in 2021

Trevor McGregor, Trevor McGregor International

Your mind is like a fertile garden. Whatever you plant, the soil will return, and your thoughts are the seeds. Plant positive powerful thoughts. To avoid too many weeks growing, you must stand guard at the door of your mind.

The two things that happen during the prime years of your life: The prime years of your life are between 25 to 65 years old. This is when you have the most opportunity as well as when the most regrets are formed.

TFEMAR: a thought turns into a feeling; feeling into an emotion; emotion into motivation; motivation to take an action; the action has a result. Therefore, your thoughts equals your results.

The 4S Success Formula: To be successful, you need to be in the right state, have the right story, the right strategy, and the right stands. Your state is your physiology, focus, and language. Your story is your identity – you are either a victim or a victor. Your strategy should be based on a character trait integration – what would so-and-so successful person do?

2021 Forecast for Apartment Investing

Brad Sumrok, Apartment Investor Mastery

2020 performance highlights

  • 2020 ended up a pretty darn good year for apartments
  • Lost 22M jobs and now down 10M – correlated with apartments
  • Occupancy dropped 60bps
  • Rents went down only 1%
  • Price per door went up and cap rates went down, so investors ‘net worth went up by owning deals

Jobs and population growth are the top two economic factors that make multifamily tick: Migration growth is important but the market must also be landlord and business friendly

Sumrok process for double digit returns

  • 1st investment is specialized education
  • Define why, SMART goals, investment criteria
  • Stabilized and value-add
  • Select the right market
  • Leverage OPE, OPT, OPM (including syndication)
  • >60 units for economic of scale
  • C and B class
  • Be dynamic (i.e., now A Class in recessed markets)
  • Exponential and expansive mindset

How to select the right target market

  • Landlord and business friendly
  • Above average cap rates
  • Above average job growth
  • Above average pop growth
  • Above average affordability gap: rent of median apartment unit < PITI of median SFR
  • Understanding local “markets” and cycles: boots on the ground
  • =highest returns and lower risk

2021 Forecast

  • 3,695,100 new jobs up 2.6% and 2.9% in 2022
  • Job growth strongest in white collar (Class A)
  • Occupancy down 40bps due to new supply
  • Rents up 1% in 2021 and 4.1% in 2022
  • Construction up 14.5%
  • Top 2021 markets: Atlanta, DFW, Austin, Houston, Tampa, Jacksonville, Phoenix, Columbus, Denver, CO Springs, NC, Nashville, Knoxville, Indianapolis

In one year from now, if you waited, you will regret it.

How to Write Off Almost Anything

Karlton Dennis, Karla Dennis and Associates

The two kinds of tax payers you don’t want to be

  • Ultra-aggressive: don’t know how to leverage tax codes but goal is pay least amount of taxes as possible
  • Ultra conservative: don’t want to take any of the deductions they qualify for and are afraid to reduce taxes because they’ve been living in fear (listening to info online, news, past CPAs, etc.)

Four simple steps to following the tax code

  • You must have a business: run your business like a business, have a time investment in a business, have a mentor or coach, have a business and strategy
  • Your business expenses must have a business purpose: there is not a list in IRS handbook that says what you can and cannot write off. If it is ordinary, necessary, reasonable in pursuit of income, it can be deducted
  • Proof of payments: keeping copy of receipts is important because it is documentation of exactly what you spend your money on – what is business and what is not business. Take pictures of your receipts
  • Expenses properly reported: If you are trying to do tax planning on your own, you will fail.

Most common tax nuances

  • Not keeping property receipts
  • Recording keeping is muddled
  • Miscategorized expenses
  • Late on bookkeeping

How the wealthy stay in the 0% to 15% tax bracket: organization and a strategic tax plan.

Passive Investor Tips for Investing in Multifamily Syndications

Travis Watts, Ashcroft Capital

What is financial freedom? When your passive income exceeds your lifestyle expenses.

What is the right investment criteria? There is no right or wrong investment criteria. What matters are your goals and your risk tolerance.

Difference between passive and active investing

  • Passive: Lacks time, enjoys reading financial news, likes to own a little bit of a lot, seeks to match not beat the stock market
  • Active: Enjoys the business of real estate, may not value diversification as top priority, seeks to control investments, has an advantage of competition, seeks to beat the market
  • Active is hands on, passive is hands off

2021’s Place in the Housing Cycle

John Burns, Burns Real Estate Consulting

High demand: 

  • Consumers made $1.03T more than usual last year due to government stimulus 
  • Consumers spend $535B less than usually last year, despite spending more on goods
  • Consumers saved an additional $1.6T in 2020 compared to 2020
  • Most homeowners and potential new home buyers are far better off financially today than a year ago
  • Google search has risen 56% for new homes, 9% for new homes
  • Millions of workers no longer need to commute

Low supply: 

  • Home listings are down over 40% YoY
  • New supply has fallen – 10% fewer communities to sell from YoY
  • Unsold new homes dropped 69% YoY

High demand + low supply = 2021 housing boom: John says we are clearly in an upcycle.

Unlocking the Fund of Funds Model

Hunter Thompson, Asym Capital

Traditional real estate partnership: Capital partner and operating partner form management LLC that purchases real estate

Co-GP model: multiple capital partners and operating partner form management LLC that purchases RE – SEC doesn’t like, especially with increasing number of capital partners

SPV/Fund of Funds:

  • SPV: special purpose vehicle
  • Considered a pass through entity
  • Doesn’t mean there are multiple assets
  • A bunch of investors invest in a SPV, there is a manager of the SPV (placement agent) who invests with another operator

Why would anyone invest through an SPV instead of investing directly with an operator?

  • Your clients desire your expertise
  • Gives them access to otherwise unavailable operators: high minimum investment
  • The dream clients you have attracted have picked you to rely on
  • Provides investors an opportunity to defer to your due diligence
  • Most investors are not like you 
  • The economies of scale are not necessarily less favorable

Preferential treatment of SPVs

  • Operators prefer to focus on implementing the business plan not investor relations/fund administration
  • You can leverage what you are bring to the table as a negotiation tool to receive preferential economic treatment
  • Many operators are willing to forego some of the economies in order to receive larger checks

Three Things it Takes to Make the Inc 5000

Defining your culture: Start with your why. why do you do what you do? Why do you go to work in the morning? Then, transcribe your why into a one or two sentence mission statement to inspire you and your team to show up.

Next is to know where you are going and what the end state looks like. This is your vision – what does success look like to you.

Third is to define your values. These are the behaviors you want to see in your organization.

Last is to avoid the say-do gap. Be care that you don’t say one thing and do another, because then your culture isn’t believable.

Developing your plan: Understand what you are going before you do it, but set a time limit. A good rule of thumb is to understand and education yourself for 90 days, develop a plan for 90 days, then go out and take action.

A good strategic plan includes three goals, three to five objectives, and multiple key results over a three year period.

Assemble your team: First, understand your strengths and weaknesses. This is best accomplished by asking your friends, and especially your spouse. Then, find people who fulfill your weaknesses.

When hiring people, focus on their character more than their competencies. You can teach competencies but you cannot teach character. Then, focus on experience but understand their track record to ensure they were successful because of skill and not luck.

Why Consider Industrial: The Case for Industrial Syndications

Monick Halm, Real Estate Investor Goddess

What is industrial real estate: all land and buildings which accommodate industrial activities

Why consider industrial real estate

    • Escape the feeding frenzy that exists in other asset classes
    • Diversify your portfolio
    • Long-term NNN leases with excellent tenants
    • Increasing demand by companies (especially e-commerce)
    • Strongest performing asset class throughout the pandemic

What is the current state of the market for industrial real estate:

  • Industrial spaces are being used by essential businesses –
  • Industrial has been the strong asset class during the COVID pandemic
  • Rents are going up and occupancy is going up

Institutional Capital Demystified

Lance Pederson, Verivest

Having a fund is a more efficient way to capitalize.

Being an operator is like owning a trucking company and having to own a refinery create your own fuel. 

Institutional capital is the equivalent of owning a job

There’s a reason why you’re seeing sponsors with 30+ year track records raising capital on crowdfunding websites because the cost of capital is much cheaper

Create Class A and Class B shares to attract HNWI, SPVs, institutional investors, etc.

Institutional readiness checklist

    • Conviction/differentiated strategy
    • Polished online presence
    • Pitch deck/executive summary
    • Due diligence questionnaire
    • Verified track record
    • Investor references
    • Secure data room
    • Quarterly reporting

If you focus on building your HNWI base, the rest well come.

Five Evolutionary Ideas for Your Business

Joe Fairless, Ashcroft Capital

Protect against biggest liability you’re currently not paying enough attention to: For 99% of syndicators, compliance. Most securities attorneys are really good at answering the questions you ask, but your are still at risk when you aren’t asking the right questions. The solution is to hire a an in-house compliance team member and acquire the proper insurance.

Bring the best out of your team: create a single KPI for each team member or a one sentence description of what their roles is so they know exactly what is expected of them and to motivate them to exceed their KPI for a bonus.

Enjoy better deal flow, deliver better returns, and create more sanity: create a fund instead of single asset purchases. It increases deal flow because you can be more flexible with the types of assets you target. It generates better returns because you can commingle capital within a fund, so there is less ideal capital.

Get better results on your thought leadership platform and in your commercial real estate business: Once your thought leadership platform matures, transition it to other people. They can focus on growing the brand and you can focus on growing the investing business.

The success paradox: The more successful you become in business, the less likely you will receive constructive criticism from your team members. The solution is to find three people in your circle who will provide you with honest feedback. Also, identify an event that didn’t go according to plan and think about how you were responsible for it taking place.

Intellectual Debate: Interest Rates Will Be Higher in 24 Months

Hunter Thompson, Asym Capital; Neal Bawa, Grocapitus Investments; John Chang, Marcus and Millichap; Ryan Smith, Elevation Capital Group

Winner – Interest rates will not be higher in 24 months

  • The question shouldn’t be, “will interest rates be higher,” the question is “how low will interest rates go and when will they go negative?” Hunter says many industrials countries already have zero and negative interest rates.
  • Japan is the new mode: in response to an 80% drop in their stock and real estate markets, they decided to print money to halt unemployment. This money printing will not end in the foreseeable future, and is being mimicked by other industrialized countries. Therefore, rising interest rates would blog up the global economy
  • The trend is your friend and don’t fight the Fed. The trend has been down and to the right for more than 40 years. Fed said they will keep the funds rate at 0% through 2024

Losers – Interest rates will be higher in 24 months

  • There isn’t evidence that the Fed will continue lowering interest rates. The prediction is based on the desire of real estate investors to see lower interest rates
  • Fed will rise interest rates to control inflation: $5 trillion in stimulus money was injected into the economy, increasing the money supply to an all-time high. GDP is forecasted to grow between 5% and 7%, which means inflation.
  • Fed always rises interest rates after recessions
  • Fed sees pandemic as a short-term risk, which means the Fed has changed its position

State of Multifamily Market: Apartments in the Age of COVID

Robert Calhoun, CoStar

The spring leasing season wasn’t lost: It was just pushed back later into the year. We lost 61k units in demand between March and June 2020 and gained 69k units in demand between July to November.

Demand in the suburbs are strong while multifamily continues to underperform in downtown areas

  • One bed rent: drop overall at onset but suburban bounced back while downtown dropped significantly 
  • NYC rents by commute time: 12% increase in rents in areas with 51 to 60 minute commute times, 9% reduction in rents for areas with commute times less than 10 minute
  • Densely populated metro areas had really bad net absorption
  • Change in asking rent from March to Dec: Downtown markets top list of markets with greatest decrease and suburban markets top list of markets with greatest decreases
  • 2021 YTD rent change: mix of downtown and suburban areas with increases in rents
  • Concessions: nearly triple for downtown and only slightly higher for the suburbs
  • Availability rate: spiked nationally, getting better which was driven by suburbs. Rates were massively elevated in downtown areas but improved quickly
  • Rent trends by unit type: two-bed are in more demand than one-bed, underperformance of studios
  • Starts and under construction: massive supply wave over last five years but constructions have rolled over in 2020 especially starts
  • Under construction by star rating: vast majority are high end expensive properties largely in downtown areas, lack of supply of affordable housing
  • Rents by star rating: 3 star rents returns to normal seasonal patterns while 4 and 5 star has underperformed
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My 5 Takeaways from BEC2021 Day 2

The Top 10 Things to Ask Before Investing

Ryan Gibson, Spartan Investment Group

Your interview with the operator

  • Ask open ended questions: When interviewing operators, see if they are interested in what you have to say
  • Write down notes
  • Keep a log of operator Q&A
  • Portfolio projects
  • Referrals
  • Property location

Are they an operator or syndicator? Determine what role the company plays. How are they compensated, how are they aligned with you? Are they aligned with the success of the project?

Tell me about a deal gone bad? This is Ryan’s favorite question. Having no deals that have gone bad indicates low experience or a lie while having deals that have gone bad helps you judge the grit of the syndicator. 

What is their mission, vision, and values? Does their mission, vision, values, align with yours? Ask them to give an example of how they’ve used their values recently.

Who is on the team? Are they a one-man band or do they have a deep bench? Are they vertically integrated? Are they using the fees they charge to hire a great team or to pay themselves?

What is their core business model? Selling education? Working elsewhere? Focused on deals? Gurus?

What is your investor communication plan? Ask for last three communications to get a better understanding of their communication style. Is the plan in writing? Can you verify property performance against projections?

What is the performance of their portfolio?

  • Historical performance (proforma vs actual): comparison is more important than absolute return since it gives you the right context
  • Was it project level IRR or investor IRR: total project may look better than investor level
  • Consistent metrics: Ryan likes to use equity multiple and how long it took gives true time tested return, IRR might be misleading or not the best metric

Obtain reference and conduct a background check

  • Don’t ask for a reference, find your own, because no one gives bad references
  • Find others that have invested in the company
  • BBB, Google reviews, 506 Group, etc. – search for the company name and name of the principles

Insurance

  • Does SEC attorney provide E&O insurance to cover for lawsuits
  • What exclusions are included on their title insurance?
  • Is there property insurance at least from an A rated Carrier?

Decision to exit

  • What would make an operator exit early? What is their justification for selling?
  • Have they sold early in the past? How many time and, how did the actual returns compare to projections?
  • How do they brief investors?

 

The Devastating Impact of Climate Change on Your Real Estate Investments in the Next 10 Years

Neal Bawa, Grocapitus

Impact of climate change in 2020 and questions to think about

  • 2020 had $95B in damage from climate disasters
  • What will happen to your investments when taxes increase to pay for massive sea walls?
  • Where will the money come from to fix Texas’s power grid?
  • In California, the six greatest wildfires happened in 2020, and will double in five years. How will this impact California cap rates?
  • Cities with sea level rise exposure are already priced at a 7% discount

Many climate risks may become uninsurable: Insurance companies are starting to buy climate data from Moody’s and creating city-by-city insurance plans.

Climate data is being used to downgrade entire cities: When a city is downgraded, their ability to borrow goes down, making it harder to fund re-construction projects. As a result, people move out, and it continues to spiral.

The end of the 30-year mortgage: Full cities may change to 20 year or 15 year mortgages options

The cities with no climate risk will be the next gold rush.

Overall, the people who set ratings, cap rates, insurance rates, mortgage terms, as well as cities are taking climate risk into account, and so should you.

How to Automatically Get More Passive Investors

Michael Blank, Nighthawk Equity

Create a lead magnet: When someone downloads a lead magnet, they get tagged in system as “downloaded”, and put on email list to receive educational emails

Join the club: After downloading the lead magnet, they are invited to fill out a detailed questionnaire, and get tagged as “joined”.

Schedule a call: Included is the option to schedule a call after filling out the questionnaire. After the call, they get tagged as “deal ready” and are now prepared to receive upcoming opportunities

Follow up automation: Automatically send follow-up emails to people tagged with “downloaded” and “joined” until they move forward in the process and set up a phone call or unsubscribe.

How to Create a Social Media Content Engine

David Toupin, Obsidian Capital & Real Estate Lab

Create lots of content one or two times per month: Either by yourself of hire a videographer for one or two sessions each month, and upload all the content to a DropBox folder

Hire an editor to create a content database: use month’s worth of content to create longer videos, shorter videos, and pictures with caption. The goal is to create at least 10 social media posts per one hour of video content

Hire a content manager: the content manager will use the content database to compile one month’s worth of social media posts.

Determine what the focus of your content is going to be: All posts should be directed towards achieving your end goal

You will approve the posts: Once the content manager has compiled a month’s worth of posts, you review and approve

Schedule the posts: After you’ve approved the posts, the content manger schedules them throughout the next month.

Rinse and repeat

When to Bring Property Management In-House

Frank Roessler, Ashcroft Capital

Day 1: Pros and cons

Pros: 

  • zero disruption
  • small overhead: won’t have to build out an entire organization, which is expensive and time consuming 
  • reduced upfront costs: offices and employee benefits

Cons: 

  • no best practices: you will be learning on the job at the detriment of the first few properties
  • starting at a loss: one property will not cover cost of managing the property, won’t breakeven until you have a couple thousand units 
  • no industry top talent: don’t have a track record to attract best of the best

When you have scale: Pros and cons

Pros

  • Ability to attract top talent: people were eager to jump ship and provide a business plan
  • Starting with a profit margin: breakeven or make a little bit of money
  • Best practices: because you have the top talent

Cons

  • Major disruption: terminating contracts, providing notice, transition process, a million moving parts
  • Significant startup costs: hiring a full team before you even have revenue
  • Relationships can be hurt
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Beyond the Comfort Zone

Stephane Rochet shares how making a plan for success also means creating a plan to push your own boundaries

In the early 2000s, Stephane Rochet worked as a police officer in his community. During his shifts and interactions with his fellow officers, he noticed many of them were often discussing their real estate investments and what was happening in the world of “alternate investments.” After leaving the police force in 2007, he still recalls that environment as the place where he first learned about the potential of real estate investing.

“It was just a realization that the traditional stocks, bonds, put money into your 401(k) and hope for the best, wasn’t working for me,” remembers Stephane. “So, I started to look for other alternatives, and that’s where it started me [into real estate investing], and then the journey continues.”

Stephane moved with his wife and two children to San Diego, California, to pursue a career in the field of athletic performance, specifically around the strength and conditioning of athletes. He also started investing in single-family houses, kickstarting what would become a very active interest in multifamily syndication and the alternate investments he used to hear so much about.

To grow, Stephane began to seek networking opportunities to build relationships and connections with like-minded investors. After several lackluster experiences with local meetups, Stephane realized that the Best Ever Conference presented serious options for personal growth and learning opportunities.

“I made three simple goals. I’m a little bit of an introvert, so going to this, I said, ‘Hey, look, you have to get out of your comfort zone and meet people.’ There were a few people that I had met with or talk to, or emailed or Facebooked before going, and I said, “Well when I’m there, I’m going to actually meet them in person and talk to them.” remembers Stephane. “I had a list of about four names of people who I had contacted previously, had been in touch with, and I sought them out, met them, we had discussions, and they introduced me to other people.”

Meeting people beyond Stephane’s known network was the ultimate goal. He found it easy to achieve, given the conference’s tools, to connect with attendees and plan your experience before arriving on-site.

“I was just determined to meet five new people every day, and that was easy because you had presenters. You’d go sit in a room with presenters, and you just talked to the people beside you while you’re waiting,” said Stephane. “Because I’m new and learning, I wanted to make sure to take advantage of the presenters that were there, so I looked at the schedule beforehand and set out my schedule and made sure I got to see all the presenters that I was interested in.”

As with most conferences, the real test is what you’re able to do with the knowledge you gained once you arrived home. For Stephane, it was not only useful but remained to be empowering on his real estate journey.

“I don’t know if I really realized it until I was on the flight home, but I just felt really excited and a lot more confidence that A, we could do this thing, B, we were on the right track, and C, you didn’t need to be, especially gifted,” said Stephane. “I mean, obviously, you have to get the knowledge, and you have to have some skills, but there were so many regular people just like me out there that were plugging away and doing the same thing.”

In the landscape of COVID-19, Stephane believes that the environment of meaningful relationships and networking comes slightly more complicated. However, not all things have to get harder. In fact, it’s Stephane’s philosophy on real estate investing as a whole that truly relies on keeping things simple.

“It’s so easy to get into the weeds, but an investor doesn’t really care about that, especially on the first call or anything,” said Stephane. “Just remember to keep it a simple, broad picture, and explain things in a way that people can just grasp it and understand why it’s a good investment or why it’s a good path to follow.”

This year at the Best Ever Conference, taking place February 18-20th, there is a full day dedicated to networking. Start networking now and use code WINNERS30 for 30% off your ticket! Register here.

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Networking in 2021

As any real estate investing pro can attest, networking is an irreplaceable factor in the success of active and passive investors. In a world catapulted into the virtual space during 2020, many investors have struggled to find how to network impactfully.

With meet-up groups delayed and in-person meetings on hold, the virtual space is now the only space to network. While many are postponing conferences, some are taking advantage of the opportunity to join in on virtual networking from right where they are.

A previous conference attendee said, “This is the lowest barrier to entry because you don’t have to leave your living room. You don’t have to buy a plane ticket. So if you’re thinking about going, you really don’t have an excuse.”

The goal of our virtual Best Ever Conference is to provide maximum value to each attendee in both insights and networking opportunities. The conference is filled with speakers and content focused on our audience’s curated needs and interests. We have a whole day set aside for networking and we strongly encourage you to take advantage of our exceptional platform that makes virtual networking easy. Some of the ways you can connect:

• Set 1-on-1 Meetings with Other Attendees
• Join Q&A Rooms for the Latest Topics
• Enter the Networking Lounge with Custom Table Topics
• Speed Networking to Make as Many Connections as Possible
• Playback Any Keynote Speaker on Demand

Our platform is open to attendees NOW. Start your networking. Use code WINNERS30 for 30% off your ticket! Register here.

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To Create Something Meaningful

How artist-at-heart Marc Cortez evolved his technology and media business success into a passive investment career

Creativity and connection fueled the early stages of Marc Cortez’s career. He thrived in competitive, start-up environments where the stakes were high, but the growth opportunities were endless. After building thriving social presences for some of the world’s biggest brands, Marc evolved his business savvy into advising budding entrepreneurs to raise capital and develop their business plans. It didn’t take Marc long to start formulating business plans of his very own.

Almost ten years and several successful ventures later, Marc finds himself exclusively in the investor seat at his firm Cortez Holdings Group. The creation of this investment group was made possible by the successes achieved in his earlier career.

“I’m an artist at heart, but my passion for real estate was inspired by the freedom I can create in my life,” said Marc. “Professionally, I spent the last ten years in tech and media turning big wins into passive investments by way of syndications. I’m consistently pursuing ways to grow my portfolio and increase my cash flow.”

Growing his portfolio and increasing cash flow has been significantly impacted through attending conferences like the Best Ever Conference. A long-time attendee, Marc began attending as a volunteer to help a friend. What started as a simple act of friendship turned into a consistent presence each year, where Marc now ushers VIP guests throughout the event.

Beyond simply attending the event, Marc’s most memorable takeaway is essential for investors of all skill levels to keep in mind.

“Make one really good friend. It’s easy to run around dropping ‘cards’ off and playing the quantity over quality game. But one incredible connection can open up an entire world,” said Marc. “I’ve seen deals and business partnerships sprout and excel from these relationships. So build a healthy connection with at least one person and be amazed at the future potential.”

Personal connections have changed the way that Marc views his personal investments, finding that the personal element often helps propel deals far faster than they would otherwise go.

“Discussing a potential sponsor with people in the same sphere or community also helps with diligence. It’s easier to get a recommendation or review,” shared Marc.

Understanding another key component of relationships is critical in bringing value to investments: how people handle adversity.

“I have a longstanding relationship with the partners [at an investment group], and I trust that my best interest as an investor is a priority, but even more so that a great relationship is a priority,” said Marc. “I can recall countless examples of how they’ve supported me inside the investment and out.”

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Living Life Fully

Dave Allred discusses what it looks like to define a path for success while making the most of each moment along the way

Discussing finances was something that wasn’t done in Dave Allred’s family growing up. Having never had those critical conversations around money or money management, Dave realized in his early adult life that he wanted more for himself around financial understanding and financial freedom.

At age 21, he committed to becoming a lifelong student of finances and investing. While he actively continues pursuing knowledge and personal development today, he credits much of his success, both personally and professionally, to that commitment very early in his life.

“I think it’s really important in our personal development is that we’re always teachable and coachable,” shared Dave. “That’s just been a guiding principle of mine is to always be a lifelong student. Not only in finances but also in real estate, personal development with my own family.”

While networking may be a topic that can make some uncomfortable, Dave rethinks networking as truly prioritizing relationships. It’s authenticity and relevancy that distinguishes the development of relationships from mere networking, which Dave believes can often come across as “gimmicky” or forced in certain situations.

“I feel like relationships are the new currency in business. My best deals, the business that I’m most proud of, has actually been with my friends, with my network,” shared Dave. “They’re people that I trust and that we have similar interests; we’re on the same mission in life.”

Relationship building has never been more critical than in our current environment, where how those relationships are built has had to be rethought due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. While conferences like Best Ever Conference are transitioning to a virtual platform to foster a sense of community and connection, Dave believes that meaningful relationships can continue to form beyond these virtual events.

“The power of social media and staying connected through Facebook groups, my Instagram page allows me to put a lot of content out there just to keep adding value for others. I follow on Instagram a lot of the people that I really respect,” said Dave. “While that’s not as personal as meeting in-person or on a call, I feel like we can still stay very connected, know what we’re working on, what we’re up to. I’m inspired by a lot of others in the space through social media. It’s a very powerful tool to be able to still communicate, add value for each other, and really collaborate.

Beyond a continuous drive to learn also lives a desire to document and measure success. Dave spent a significant amount of time creating his “lifestyle design”, or what he calls a blueprint for his own life. By documenting his core values, mission statement, non-negotiables, and more, he could use those as a foundation to build financial success on top.

“People overestimate what they can accomplish in one year, but they underestimate what they can accomplish in three to five years. I found that to be true over and over,” said Dave. “If we can get clear on what we really want in the long-term and have the right habits and behavior then we can actually accomplish amazing, significant things, but it takes time.”

Start your networking today at the Best Ever Conference, taking place February 18-20th. Use code WINNERS30 for 30% off your ticket! Register here.

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The Art of Doing

Rob Withers explains how the world around him inspires his philosophy behind real estate

Born and raised in Arizona, Rob Withers moved to Colorado for college and found his home. He spent a large bulk of his life fully engrossed in all the outdoor activities that Colorado has to offer. From mountain biking to hiking to skiing, Rob took advantage of being outdoors whenever he could. The only time that seemed not to be possible was when he worked as a technology consultant for more than 25 years but discovered real estate investing on the side.

Only a few years out of college in the 1990s, Rob invested in several single-family rental homes in Arizona and Colorado. The time commitment of his family and a full-time job at a multinational consulting firm kept him from fully investing his time to learn what was necessary to attain true success and the desired returns on his investments. Leaving the investing world feeling discouraged, another opportunity presented itself that changed how Rob invested both then and for his foreseeable future.

“Around 2010, a good friend of mine who was a realtor said to me, “Lakewood Housing Authority is selling off all this inventory, duplexes, single-family homes. The income’s great. You should really look at this. I know you dabbled in real estate a while ago.” And he had the contract to sell off 40 or 50 doors,” remembered Rob. “And so at the time I bought three duplexes, and the math was totally different than it was in the ’90s. Since then, I expanded buying more rentals and developed a partnership with a builder to build single-family homes and duplexes in Denver.”

The transition from single-family properties to duplexes opened Rob’s eyes to the multifamily syndication model. Rob bought and sold a 64 unit multi-family property in 2019. Over the last few years, he’s been transitioning more of his time, energy, and financial resources to diversify his investment portfolio and develop relationships in the real estate investing community.

Attending conferences like the Best Ever Conference in 2019 was an easy decision for Rob to make, given his close geographical proximity to Keystone. He was also inspired to lean into his desire to learn and do more within real estate.

“I was impressed with the quality of the people at the conference. Many have had successful careers and are learning the business” said Rob. “But then there are others that are a little bit more mature and have been around the block a bit longer but are still very approachable and still willing to discuss deals. I feel like I learned a lot and met great people.”

When thinking about the impact of what COVID-19 has on the reality of networking in 2021, Rob believes there are definite impacts for new relationship building, especially if real estate investing is not your primary occupation.

“For me personally, I still feel like there’s so much more I could do on the real estate side, simply around networking if I didn’t have the challenge of 40 to 50 hour a week job. So that does impact me,” reflects Rob. “But there are certainly tools that can help; I think a key for a conference where there’s a larger group setting is to create a form of engagement where there can be joint participation.”

This year at the Best Ever Conference, taking place February 18-20th, there is a full day dedicated to networking. Start networking now and use code WINNERS30 for 30% off your ticket! Register here.

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Eyes on the Skies

Lifelong pilot Tait Duryea shares how his passion for real estate soared after the Best Ever Conference experience.

An active lifestyle was always in the cards for Tait Duryea. Alongside his avid love of flying, Tait had always been intrigued by real estate investing. Not long after he started his career as a pilot, he purchased his first rental property in Las Vegas, Nevada at the age of 24.

“It was just a single-family house in Las Vegas. I put a property manager between me and the tenants, so they wouldn’t know how young I was,” remembered Tait. From that single-family home onward, he fell in and out of real estate investments without a particular strategy. Being newer to real estate, he discovered the Best Ever Conference taking place in Denver in 2019 and decided to take part.

“The catalyst for getting me more active with [real estate] was Best Ever Conference. It was the first conference that I had ever attended and it just catapulted my career from being someone who was new to the ropes from reading books and listening to podcasts, to being someone who did real estate and had a real estate network, because it’s all about relationships,” said Tait. “It launched my true real estate investing career, got me out of single-family [investments] and into commercial and syndication.”

Passive investments, like multi-family syndication, weren’t something that Tait was even aware existed prior to the Best Ever Conference. During the event in 2019, a mock debate whether active or passive investing was better took place, prompting some new thinking.

To many, the concept of networking can seem artificial, forced, or even trite. However, relationship building proved to be an essential element that Tait took from the Best Ever Conference, retaining relationships forged over that weekend into his real estate transactions today. The absolute, exponential power of relationships in the real estate investing business is something that Tait believes is worth experiencing and contributing to.

“Just having a network of like-minded real estate investors who you know personally and that your friends with is rocket fuel,” said Tait. “And unless you’ve been to a conference and you start talking with other people who are doing things like you are and have ideas and contacts and people that can help in what you’re trying to do, it’ll change your investing career.”

Attending the Best Ever Conference ultimately changed how Tait invested, shifting 50% of his investment portfolio into finding, vetting, and investing in limited partnership syndication deals instead of all active investments in single and multi-family homes.

Tait believes there’s never been a better year to try it out.

“This is the lowest barrier to entry because you don’t have to leave your living room,” said Tait. “You don’t have to buy a plane ticket. So if you’re thinking about going, you really don’t have an excuse.”

Start your networking today at the Best Ever Conference, taking place February 18-20th. Use code WINNERS30 for 30% off your ticket! Register here.

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20 Out-Of-The-Box Gift Ideas for 2020

Research has found that experiences are what really make us happy rather than buying “things”. For example, looking forward to an exciting event or vacation will actually make us happier, compared to opening a gift box in anticipation to see what’s inside.

This holiday season, I compiled a list of meaningful gift ideas for your family and friends. These “out-of-the-box” gifts are an opportunity to show your loved ones how much you care, while going beyond sending another gadget or gift basket their way. These gift ideas are sustainable, environmentally-friendly, and require no shipping; something your postal carrier can be thankful for this year. Without further ado…

MINI VACATIONS & LOCAL TRIPS (SOCIAL DISTANCE APPROVED)
1. Take a road trip
2. Go on a hike
3. Take a lesson together
4. Hang out at the beach
5. Rent a cabin on Airbnb

CLASSES & LESSONS
1. Dance classes
2. Language classes
3. Yoga classes
4. Horseback riding classes
5. Tennis classes

MEMBERSHIPS & TICKETS
1. Membership to the science museum
2. Membership to the zoo
3. Season tickets to the opera
4. Season tickets to the local theatre company
5. Gym memberships

FOOD EXCURSIONS
1. Brunch on the beach
2. A romantic candlelight dinner at home
3. Cocktail (or mocktail) hour
4. A tin of fresh homemade cookies
5. A picnic in the park

Happy Holidays

Travis Watts

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10 Ways to Promote and Market Your New Book

Whether you are a multifamily investor, fix-and-flipper, real estate agent, or any type of real estate professional, publishing an ebook or hard copy book is a powerful way to grow your business.

The main reason why is because whenever you publish a book, you instantly increase your credibility and reputation in the eyes of customers (buyers, sellers, investors, etc.).

“Wow, they’ve written a 450-page book on how to complete an apartment syndication. They must be experts.”

By positioning yourself as an expert with your book, you build trust with your customer at an accelerated pace. And as Bob Burg says in The Go-Giver, “All things being equal people will do business with, and refer business to those people they know, like and trust.”

He is a real-world example of the power of writing a book: I recently interviewed Max Keller of “Deals Chasing You.” On the podcast. He wrote the book on senior housing. When he sends direct mailers to generate senior housing leads, he includes a note that if they call, he will send them a free copy of his book. As a result of this simply tweak to his marketing, he quadrupled his response rate.

Writing a book = increased credibility = increase trust = more business.

We have previously written about the logistics on writing a book, which you can read here.

The purpose of this blog is to outline the best ways to promote your new book before and after it is published to ensure a successful launch, getting the book in front of as many of the right people as possible in order to maximize its impact on your business.

When creating a marketing strategy for a new book, it is important to keep top of mind that there are three parties involved in the publication of a new book:

  • The authors: you and any co-authors or ghost-writers
  • The end customer: the people who will purchase and benefit from your book
  • The contributors: anyone who contributed to the information in the book, including editors, formatters, the person who wrote the foreword, people who give testimonials, people who are features in the book, people who provided advice that was included in the book, etc.

Therefore, when you are thinking about strategies for promoting your book, how to tap into the self-interest of each party must be top of mind.

Each of the following strategies benefits either the end customer, the contributors or both. Obviously, the authors benefit regardless from the book sales.

We marketed our most recent publication, Best Ever Apartment Syndication Book, in 10 ways, which I will outline below. However, one strategy that we didn’t utilize for our syndication book but do plan on utilizing for the book we are currently working on (the working title is Best Ever Passive Investor Handbook) is giving the book away for free.

This is the strategy Max Keller implemented (discussed above). Giving a book away for free adheres to something we consistently talk about here – adding value for free.

When Max Keller receives inbound calls from prospective senior housing leads, he not only sends them his book for free but also directs them to the chapter or chapters that will address a specific problem or challenge they are facing. By going above and beyond for these callers before they’ve even expressed interest in selling allows him to receive exclusive deals with no other active buyers or competitors.

Max says his goal is to give away 1 million books!

This is even something that can help you generate book topics. Do you receive the same questions repeatedly from customers? Right a book on the subject. Whenever you receive an inquiry, rather than answering the question (or in addition to answering the question), offer to send them the book for free.

As I mentioned above, we plan on utilizing this strategy for the passive investing book we are working on. Passive investors ask similar questions when presented with opportunities or when initial inquiring. Therefore, we are writing the go-to book on passive investing and will send a copy to investors.

In addition to sending the book for free, here are 10 other ways to promote a new book:

1. Social Media

One of the first ways to start promoting a new book is on social media. In fact, you can start marketing your book on social media before you’ve written a single word.

Here are some examples of social media posts ideas pre-launch:

  • Announce the topic of the new book you are writing
  • Ask for feedback throughout the process, like titles, questions to address, cover designs, etc.
  • Provide frequent updates on your progress (i.e., outline is done, first chapter is done, 50% done, etc.)
  • Provide advice on writing a book that you have learned along the way.

As an example of this last point, we created a post where I posted a few lessons he learned on how to effectively overcome writer’s block.

The purpose of pre-launch promotion activities is to engage your audience and would-be purchasers in the process of writing the book. That way, they feel as if they have a stake in the book since they were involved in its creation process. Plus, they are aware of the book and what will be included far in advance, which increases the chances of them buying (and maybe even promoting the book themselves).

Once the book is published, you can create a post on social, announcing that the book is now available for purchase. On Facebook, you can create a paid advertisement for the book. A 30 to 60 second spoken video explaining what people will learn from the book is the most effective type of Facebook advertisement.

You can also use social media to share some of the other promotion strategies I will outline below.

2. Pre-Order Page

Another effective pre-launch promotion strategy is to allow buyers to pre-order your book.

How to tactically setup pre-orders will depend on how you publish your book. If you are working with a publisher, they will likely need to be the ones who setup the preorder process. If you are self-publishing on Amazon, click here for the process we used to set up preorders.

Once the preorder page is live on Amazon (or somewhere else, again, depending on the publisher), you promote the page on social media.

3. Book Page

Creating a book page on your website is another way to promote your book. The timing of the book page can coincide with the preorder page going live.

Here are examples of the book pages we created for our three books:

Your book page needs to answer the question, “why should I buy this book?” Therefore, it should give would-be buyers an exclusive look, a sneak peek into the valuable information they obtain.

4. Free Giveaways

One of the benefits offered to those who pre-order the book, and something that should be presented front and center on your book page, is a free giveaway.

The free giveaway should be one or more resources above and beyond, yet related to, the book.

For example, for those who pre-ordered our Best Ever Apartment Syndication Book, they received eight free documents. We asked people to email us their receipt of purchase and in return we emailed them the documents.

I think this is the best strategy for promoting a new book. People are more incentivized to pre-order the book because of the fear of missing out (FOMO). Therefore, while writing your book, constantly think about excel calculators, PDF guides, eBooks, etc. you can create and give away.

So that people continue to purchase the book after it is published, you can still giveaway completely different documents or a portion of the ones given away to those who preordered.

Another twist on the free giveaways is to create a contest where people can win a free signed copy of your book. For example, when Theo and I used to do weekly Follow-Along Friday podcast, we did a Best Ever Trivia Question of the Week. The first people to email us (or comment on the YouTube video) the correct answer received a free, signed copy of our first book.

5. Reviews

For the people who organically find your book (i.e., people who are not already in your audience) will make their purchase decision on the reviews – both the quality and quantity. Therefore, you want to obtain many quality reviews as fast as possible after launch. The most effective way to accomplish this is to get reviews before the book is published.

You don’t want fake or generic reviews. These turn off would-be buyers. Instead, to ensure that the reviews are genuine, send a PDF of the book to people before it is published and ask them. Tell them when the book will be published and ask them to leave a genuine review within a few days of launch. Then, once the book is launched, follow-up with that person to make sure they left the review.

They benefit because they get access to your book before it is public for free.

For the Best Ever Apartment Syndication Book, each person on our team was responsible for getting at least five reviews and then following up to make sure those reviews were posted.

Once the book is published, you can generate even more reviewed by leveraging another free giveaway. For the Best Ever Apartment Syndication Book, those who left a review and emailed us a screenshot received a free document.

We were able to generate over 300 reviews for the Best Ever Apartment Syndication Book using this strategy.

6. Testimonials

Obtaining and putting testimonials in your book and/or on your book page is a great way to get other people to promote your book. Therefore, for whatever you are writing about, get at least five people who have already benefited from the advice in the book to write a testimonial. Or, even better, get one person who is well known. For example, I was able to get a testimonial from Barbara Corcoran of Shark Tank on my first book and Brandon Turner on my second book, which were featured on the front cover of the book.

They benefit by having their name and business included in a best-selling book. You benefit because you can use the testimonials to promote the book.

You can include the testimonials on your book page too. Then, people who view the page will not only learn what they will learn by reading the book, but also how the advice has already helped someone else achieve success.

Additionally, the people who wrote the testimonials are more likely to share the book on their social media and other platforms, allowing you to tap into their audience.

7. Foreword

You can use the foreword to promote your book in the same way as the testimonials. Except the person who wrote the foreword is even more likely to share the book with their audience. The foreword is usually multiple pages long compared to a one or two sentence testimonial, and their name is oftentimes included on the cover.

For example, Master Platinum Coach and former Tony Robbins’ Master Coach Trevor McGregor wrote the foreword to the Best Ever Apartment Syndication Book. As a result, we were able to get our book and name out in front of his high performing, large audience.

8. Other Contributors

In addition to the people who wrote the testimonials and foreword, anyone else who contributed to the book can be a promotion source.

This was how we were able to get exposure for our first two book – Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever Volume I and II. For both books, each chapter was dedicated to a real estate professional I interviewed on my podcast. Once the book was published, nearly all of them shared it with their audience. And why wouldn’t they? The book was basically a biography of their investing careers and their Best Ever advice.

Other contributors that can promote your book, as I mentioned in the introduction, are:

  • Editors: the proofreader and/or copy editor may share the book with their audience to promote their own editing services
  • Designers: the people who designed the cover and/or any interior designs may also share your book to promote their own design services
  • Acknowledgements: anyone who helped in any other way with the book are usually included in the acknowledgments section. Since their name is included in the book and they benefited the creation of the book, they may share it with their audience

Overall, the more you can include other people in the book, the more potential promoters you have once the book has been launched.

9. Your Thought Leadership Platforms

Using a similar approach to promoting your book on social media, you can promote your book on all your thought leadership platforms, like your newsletter, podcast, blog, or YouTube channel.

Once the book is published, you can do a mini-series about the book. For example, Theo and I did a 10-part podcast series summarizing the Best Ever Apartment Syndication Book.

10. Other People’s Thought Leadership Platforms

Another way to tap into other people’s audiences is to promote your book on their platforms. The simplest approach is to be interviewed on someone else’s podcast. You would want to make sure you request that the episode air the week of the book launch.

In addition to providing a sneak peek into the content of the book, offer to giveaway a free document to anyone who buys the book or provide an exclusive discount code.

Once the interviews are live, share them on your social medial and other thought leadership platforms.

In Conclusion – Be Creative

My last piece of advice for promoting your book is to be creative.

The examples above are the things we did to market our three books. But there are countless more ways to increase the exposure of your book. So, for each of the 10 categories, brainstorm other ways you can leverage them to promote your book.

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Real Estate Investing Advice from 7 US Military Veterans – Happy Veteran’s Day

Many former US military service members become real estate investors after transitioning to civilian life.

Discipline, a strong work ethic, loyalty, collaboration, leadership, effective communication, problem solving and many more skills obtained in the military are also beneficial to growing a real estate business.

Additionally, because of their background, they bring a different perspective to real estate investing – things that civilians like me may not have thought of. Fortunately for you and me, many veterans have come on the podcast to share these unique insights.

In honor of Veteran’s Day, here is the Best Real Estate Investing Advice Ever from 7 US military veterans interviewed on the podcast.

1. Think Big, Act Small

Seth Wilson: Founder and Managing Director of Clarity Equity Group

Military experience: Four-time combat veteran of 14 years, and currently serves in the Missouri Air National Guard as a pilot of the C-130 tactical airlift aircraft

Episode: JF2208 Veteran To Founder

Best Ever Advice: Thing big but act small. When setting goals, always aim high. But make sure that you paying attention to the details and taking massive intelligent action every single day in pursuit of your goal.

2. Get Out There and Take Risks (That Won’t Destroy You)

David Pere: Founder of From Military to Millionaire

Military experience: US Marine Corps since 2008

Episode: JF2102 From Military to Millionaire

Best Ever Advice: Just get out there, do it, and take risks. Having a safety net (in David’s case, his job in the military) can give you more confidence to take greater risks. But, David did put a ceiling to the level of risk one should take – if you take a risk and fail, it shouldn’t utterly break you. That is, you should be able to mentally and financially dust yourself off, recover, and get back in the game. The greater risks you can take, the larger the payoff.

3. Find Your Own Unique Niche to Reduce Competition

Phil Capron: Multifamily investors and Senior Mentor with Michal Blank

Military experience: Naval Special Warfare Combatant Craft Crewman

Episode: JF1984 From the Military to Multifamily

Best Ever Advice: When in the military, Phil’s smaller special ops unit did the missions other crews weren’t able to. The other, bigger units lacked the tactics, training, equipment, or personnel. Similarly, Phil pursues deals and strategies that other, large operators aren’t willing or able to do.

Whatever the big operator’s investment criteria is his is the opposite. As a result, he has access to deals that they don’t have access to, which has allowed him to do deals in competitive markets.

Therefore, if you are having a hard time finding a deal, ask yourself what you can do differently to create a niche for yourself with minimal to no competition.

4. House Hacking and the Real Formula to Success

Eric Upchurch: COO and Co-Founder of Active Duty Passive Income and Senior Managing Partner at ADPI Capital

Military experience: Army Special Operations

Episode: JF1890 From Military Life to Civilian Work & Real Estate Investing

Best Ever Advice: First is to use the VA loan if possible (the similar option for civilians is the FHA loan). Zero (or minimal) money out of pocket for a cash flowing asset. Target a four-plex, live in one unit for at least one year and one day, and repeat. You will live rent free(ish) and/or generate cash flow each month.

Second was Eric’s real formula to success: “Learn, network, add value, take action. If you do those things over and over again, success will hunt you down.”

5. Always Follow Through with Commitments

Jamie Bateman: Founder of Labrador Lending

Military experience: Captain in Army Reserves

Episode: JF2224 Note Investing Strategies

Best Ever Advice: Jamie’s best ever advice was three-fold. First is to focus on your strengths and outsource your weakness to others. Second is to consistently think about how you can add value and contribute to something bigger than yourself – both in business and your personal life. Third is to just do what you say you are going to do. Keeping your word is very important. There are many people who make a commitment to do something and then disappear, never follow-up, or follow-up too late.

6. Set 10X Goals Based on Your Potential, Not Current Abilities

Vincent Gethings: Co-Founder and COO of Tri-City Equity Group

Military experience: 14 years in Air Force

Episode: JF2204 Investing While Overseas

Best Ever Advice: Set goals based off of your potential and not your abilities. Many people have limiting beliefs, which force them to set goals based on what they think they can accomplish based on their current experience, education level, relationships, etc. As a result, they set the bar extremely low. They use the SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-based); Vincent hates SMART goals because of the R, realistic.

Instead, Vincent is more of an adherent to Grant Cardone’s 10X rule. Set big, scary, audacious goals, and then take massive action toward them. Don’t be realistic, because that doesn’t give you any chance to grow.

7. SHUT UP!

Bill Kurzeja: Owner and Founder of Professional Success South

Military experience: 8 years of service as a Sergeant

Episode: JF2155 sales Skills to Improve Your Business

Best Ever Advice: Shut up and listen. We have two ears and one month, so use them accordingly. In sales, most of the time people will tell us exactly what they want and how to win them over. We just need to listen, use the information, and apply it back. This starts by setting the table – that is, proper preparation beforehand, which includes research and practice.

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The Ultimate Guide to Publishing Your First Real Estate Book

Having a successful thought leadership platform is a must if you want to start and scale an apartment syndication business. As a reminder, the best thought leadership platforms are interview-based, online platforms that offer unique information, insights, and ideas to a specified target audience for free. The most common thought leadership platforms are podcasts, YouTube channels, and blogs.

It will allow you to build new friendships and business relationships, as well as strengthen and maintain existing ones. It will allow you to stay top-of-mind of real estate professionals and potential passive investors because you will be consistently providing valuable content for free. It essentially allows you to continuously network with people on a global scale – even while you are asleep. And it will allow you to create a reputation as a credible expert on the apartment syndication investment strategy.

In order to take your thought leadership platform to the next level and maximize its benefits to you and your real estate investing business, consider publishing a book on Amazon.

I have published three books and have a fourth book in the works. Here is my process for preparing to write my books, how I write and edit my books, my prelaunch preparations, and how I promote my books once they are published.

 

Before Writing   

The first step is to create a high-level outline for your book. The outline should include the titles of the chapters and a checklist of information to include in each chapter. This should take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks, depending on how complicated the book subject. 

Once the high-level outline is completed, the next step is to perform research about the items on your checklist. This research may include reviewing your thought leadership platform interviews and blog posts, performing more interviews with experts, or miscellaneous online research. This should take anywhere to one week to six to eight weeks, again depending on how complicated the book subject. 

The last step before writing is to create a more detailed outline for the book. This outline will include chapter titles, the section titles for each chapter, the information included in each section, and a one sentence outcome for each chapter. Since most of the work is already completed, this should take no more than two weeks to complete. 

 

Writing and Editing  

Once you’ve completed the research phase and created the detailed outline, the bulk of the work begins, which is writing the first draft of the book. At this point, I recommend that you focus on just writing the chapters. Depending on how much time you have to dedicate to the book and your writing skills, each chapter should take anywhere from one week to a few weeks to write. The ideal approach is to schedule a large block of time and try to write the entire chapter in one sitting. At the very least, try to write an entire section of a chapter in one sitting. For example, if chapter one has four sections, either write all four sections in four hours one day or write one section per day for four days. 

When writing the chapters for your first draft, don’t worry about editing. Just get words on paper (or words on Microsoft Word). Because once you’ve finished the first draft, you will then go back over each chapter and perform an internal edit. A good strategy is to edit one chapter per day. First, read through the chapter and make any major content changes, like removing large portions or adding large portions. Then, read through the chapter again and make any minor content changes, like grammatical errors, formatting or style changes, etc. These are internal edits that you or someone on your team performs. Depending on how long the book is, this step should take four to eight weeks to complete.  

Once you’ve completed your internal edits, send the entire book to a professional copy editor. If you do not know a copy editor, I recommend posting a job on www.Upwork.com. Ideally, the copy editor has experience editing books of a similar topic (i.e., has experience copy editing real estate books). The copy editor will review and correct your book to improve accuracy, readability, and fitness to ensure that it is free of error, omission, inconsistency, and repetitionDon’t worry about formatting, grammar, or misspellings with the copy editor. That will be covered by the proofreader. 

The best approach I have found is to have the copy editor track their changes in a Word document. That way, you can easily see what changes they made. You can review each of the changes and manually accept or reject their changes rather than comparing your draft to the edited draft, re-reading each word to see the differences. 

When we’ve written our books, we write the chapters first and while those are being edited by the copy editor, we write the remaining content, like the introduction and conclusions. Once we’ve written the introduction and conclusion, we send those to the copy editor. You can either follow this approach or you can write the entire book from start to finish before sending it to the copy editor. Make sure to send all content for the book to the copy editor, including dedication chapters, glossaries, biography pages, foreword, testimonials, back cover descriptions, etc. 

Another thing you will want to work on while the copy editor is working on the book is to create any designs you want included in the book. You may want to include nicely designed flow chart, graphs, data tables, etc. in your book. I recommend posting another job to www.UpWork.com  to hire a graphic designer. 

Lastly, you will need to create a front cover, spine, and back cover design for your book. At this point, you will want to make our first visit to the Amazon Self-Publishing page to find the requirements for the cover and spine designs. Here is everything you need to know about creating your paperback and eBook cover. 

Once the copy editor is finished and you’ve approved/rejected their changes, the next step is to send your manuscript to a proofreader and an interior formatter. I’ve found that using the same company for proofreading and interior formatting is ideal. We use the company EbookPbook. EbookPbook’s specific process is that you send them your manuscript in PDF form. They will first proofread the book, tracking their changes using the comment function in PDF. Once you’ve approved the changes, they will then format the book. They will ask you to send them an example book for inspiration (for example, we sent them a James Patterson book for our apartment syndication book). Once you approved the format, they will send you the final manuscript in PDF form (to post as a paperback) and/or MOBI form (to post as an eBook). 

 This is the process and services we used to edit and design our book. For more options, here is a list of providers that Amazon has on their self-publishing site. 

 Whatever servicer you use should be familiar with the Amazon self-publishing process. However, just in case, here is everything you need to know about how to format the interior of your book. 

Now that you have the manuscript/s, you are ready to begin the publishing process. 

 

Pre-Launch Preparations  

If you are interested in setting up your book for pre-order on Amazon, here is an article on the pre-order process.  

You will want to start the process of publishing your book on KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing) at least 1 week before your publish date. If you want to order a proof of the book prior to it going live, you will need to start the process at least 2 weeks prior to the publish date.  

To start the process, go to https://kdp.amazon.com/en_US/bookshelf. Once there, if you are creating an eBook and a Paperback, click “+Paperback”. If you are just creating an eBook, click “+Kindle eBook”. 

From here, the process is very straight forward. But here a few things to consider: 

  • Description: Make sure you have a description of the book written prior to beginning the publishing process. This is the description that potential buyers will read when viewing the book on Amazon 
  • Keywords: Amazon allows you to select up to 7 keywords 
  • Categories: Amazon allows you to select up to 2 categories 
  • ISBN: Amazon will provide you with a free ISBN. But if you use their ISBN, you can only distribute the book on Amazon. If you want to distribute the book through other channels, you will need to buy an ISBN from www.myidentifiers.com  
  • Book Preview: once you’ve uploaded the manuscript and book cover, you can use Amazon’s Book Preview software to check your book for formatting and print quality issues. I highly recommend checking each page in your book for issues that Amazon’s review team may have missed 
  • Pricing: here is the information on royalties for the paperback and eBook. 

 You will also want to create an Author Central account. This is where you create your author page, which will be included on your book page once it is live on Amazon.  

Once you’ve completed the steps on KDP bookshelf, click publish and your book will be available to purchase on Amazon.com. 

 

Promoting Your Book 

Promotions for your new book should start well before the book actually goes live on Amazon. 

Here is what we did to promote our best-selling apartment syndication book: 

  • Giveaways: We offered free giveaways to people who pre-ordered our book 
  • Newsletter copy: We included copy in our newsletter once the book was available for pre-order and again once it was officially live 
  • Podcast interviews: I was interviewed on other popular real estate podcasts, which aired the week the book was published 
  • Reviews: We sent the manuscript to 50 people so that we would have 50 reviews the first day the book was live 
  • Paid advertising: We paid for advertising through Amazon for select relevant keywords 
  • Book page: We created a landing page to pre-order and buy the book on our website 

Overall, the logistics for self-publishing a book on Amazon is straight forward. Amazon has a lot of videos, help topics, and downloaded how-to guides to guide you through the process.

 

Are you an accredited investor who is interested in learning more about passively investing in apartment communities? Click here for the only comprehensive resource for passive apartment investors.

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What Does it Really Mean to Have an Entrepreneurial Mindset?

You may think you have an entrepreneurial mindset simply because you’ve fallen in love with the perks that entrepreneurship brings, such as financial independence and, possibly, more free time. In reality, though, being your own boss can bring with it certain challenges you might not have thought of before.

Your stereotypical entrepreneur has several core qualities that simply cannot be denied. If you possess these qualities, then you might possess the spirit of an entrepreneur. And, in this case, pursuing a career as a real estate investor may be the smartest career choice you’ll ever make.

If you’re asking yourself “What does it mean to be an entrepreneur,” here’s a rundown on the key features that make an entrepreneur.

Having an Entrepreneurial Mindset Means Being Scared

If you’re looking at a prospective real estate investment or business partner, it’s good to be the type of person who is scared to make the wrong choice. Why? Because you’ll be hyperfocused and take whatever steps are necessary to make the right decision. In other words, vigilance can become the secret weapon you wield to succeed as an entrepreneur.

Be willing to complete careful and regular market research to find the best deals possible.

Having an Entrepreneurial Mindset Means Being Fearless

If you’re asking “What does it mean to be an entrepreneur,” you may, understandably, think that being fearless and being scared is a contradiction. The reality is that these two emotions can go hand in hand. After all, even though you may not feel 100% confident about a particular real estate deal, for example, you could still see its huge potential and, thus, be willing to pursue it with your resources of money and time.

So, if you’re the type of person who is carefully optimistic, then a career as an entrepreneur may be the perfect fit for you.

Having an Entrepreneurial Mindset Means Liking Challenges

When employees face problems, they often try to get out of these problematic situations as quickly as possible. However, entrepreneurs take on a different approach: They are driven to work harder when they face adversity. That’s because they inherently don’t see things as insurmountable; instead, they see the process of creating and growing a business as a challenge to successfully overcome.

Having an Entrepreneurial Mindset Means Being Flexible

If you’re the type of person who is quick to take action and make a necessary change, then you may find entrepreneurship to be an excellent fit for you.
As an entrepreneur, you should spend some time writing down your business plan on paper. In fact, setting clear goals this way can also be highly beneficial. However, there might be moments in which you’ll simply have to improvise as you embark on your business plan. Being inventive in this way is an excellent skill that will keep you moving forward rather than becoming stuck due to analysis paralysis.

Having an Entrepreneurial Mindset Means Liking Change

If you are averse to change, then a career in entrepreneurship—and especially in real estate investing—is not for you. That’s because fearing change is essentially self-sabotaging behavior.
The truth is, markets are constantly changing, and demand and supply in real estate can especially alter from one season to the next. To excel as an entrepreneur, you must embrace change and be willing to use it to your advantage.

Having an Entrepreneurial Mindset Means Being Resourceful

Being resourceful in real estate investing means knowing how to find out information that you desperately need before jumping on a deal.

For instance, you can join local real estate networking groups or attend real estate conferences to develop an understanding of sales. You could also gain information to help you to decide whether to target commercial real estate or residential real estate starting out. Or, you can talk to real estate brokers in your area to find out which houses for sale might be the smartest investments for you. No matter what it takes, you’ll find the information you need to make your real estate dream work out.

Seize the Day

Now that you know the answer to the question “What does it mean to be an entrepreneur,” it’s time to take a good look at yourself and be honest. Do you have what it takes to succeed as a business starter and manager? In other words, do you have an entrepreneurial mindset?

If the answer is “yes,” then it’s time to get started with living out your purpose and tapping into the potential that has yet to be released like a stream. Fortunately, I can help you to capitalize on your entrepreneurial spirit to generate robust levels of revenue in the real estate industry.

Get in touch with me now to find out more about how you can use your business-oriented mind to thrive in the potentially lucrative real estate field.

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A Guide to Branding Real Estate Investment Companies

Your real estate business name may be your last name, followed by “LLC.” But there’s much more to defining your company than simply giving it a name. The question you should be asking yourself is, “What exactly does my real estate investment company stand for?” How can you really “sell your face off” as a real estate entrepreneur?

The truth is, if you haven’t branded yourself or your venture, you may already be behind the other real estate investment companies you’re competing with. That’s because your brand provides a powerful sense of what your company represents and establishes the tone for the way your deals operate.

Give your business the direction it needs to prevail long-term by using the following steps and putting a strong and recognizable brand in place.

Size Up Your Competition

As you aim to figure out how to build your business brand in the real estate industry, your first step should be to evaluate your competitors. This includes analyzing the local real estate market and seeing what other local players are doing. This can help you to find out which strategies seem to be working well for investors, as well as which strategies appear to be a bust. By sizing up your market, you may gain unique opportunities that you didn’t know existed.

Another reason to evaluate your competition is that you can ensure that your brand is exclusive. You don’t want your brand to mimic those of other real estate investment companies, which can cause confusion. This is essential for credibility and building authenticity because, if you copy another company, this may lead to negative recognition for you, even if you didn’t do it intentionally.

Define Your Company’s Brand

Why did you start your company? What are your business goals? The answer to these questions will help you to define your brand and identify what your venture stands for.

For starters, put together a mission statement, along with a list of core values and a vision statement. These three items are typically included in real estate investment companies’ business plans and will keep you focused on solid goals.

Mission Statement

You can create a mission statement by listing all of your aims and then narrowing them to the one that best matches what you feel your purpose is. Ideally, your mission statement should be no more than a sentence long, and it should be straightforward enough for all your passive investors to understand it. It should also be simple enough that you can easily retain it; in other words, you shouldn’t have to think about what your mission is—it should be second nature.

Values Statement

An important step in generating a values statement is jotting down everything that real estate investment companies like yours stand for. Your business’s values may include, for example, integrity. You need a values statement because, without one, you may be tempted to make compromises that could end up harming your reputation, your deals, or your business altogether. This document will also help you ensure your values are aligned with those of the passive investors you want to attract.

Vision Statement

It’s also a good idea to put together a vision statement for your real estate investment company. The most successful real estate investment companies have a good idea of where they see themselves in the future. Write down what you would like to do in the next five or 10 years, for instance, and be sure to write this statement in present-tense—as though it has already come to pass.

Without a vision, you may find it challenging to keep moving your real estate business forward in the toughest of times. You need something to strive for. That’s what a vision statement provides for you.

Other Considerations

As a real estate investor, you’ll also need to define who your company’s target audience is before you start promoting your business brand and delivering your message. Which demographic are you aiming to reach? Of course, understand that this can change depending on the different deals and strategies you decide to focus on.

Also, take a look at your business and figure out which advantages you possess over the competition. The thing you can provide that other real estate investment companies cannot is what you want to emphasize in your marketing.

Develop Your Brand

This is the next critical step if you’re trying to figure out how to build a business brand that will help you to compete effectively. This step involves creating a logo for your company, as well as a slogan. You’ll also want to develop a presence online by setting up your own website and social media profiles.

Another way to create your brand is to create a buyers list. This is essentially a database filled with sellers and buyers who might want to take advantage of what you have to offer, or they may know somebody who’d be interested in working with you. Continue to add to this list as your venture grows.

Deliver Your New Brand

If you have a strong platform and clear message, your next step as you explore how to build your business brand is to implement your newly created brand. This generally involves taking part in networking events as well as real estate meetups in your local area. However, it also involves expressing your new brand via your social media profile, your website, and even a podcast. You could also deliver the brand to possible customers using the direct-mail marketing approach.

Refine Your Brand

All successful real estate investment companies’ identities were not forged overnight. So, don’t expect yours to be perfected in a jiffy, either. Instead, be open to making continuous improvements. In fact, you might have to rebrand yourself in your future, depending on your circumstances. Just keep in mind that, even if your brand evolves over time, what your company stands for and your message should remain the same; you’ll simply need to adapt how you deliver this message.

Start Branding Your Real Estate Investment Company Today!

If you want to stay ahead of competing real estate investment companies, it’s critical that you brand yourself effectively. Fortunately, you don’t have to figure out how to build your business brand in the real estate industry all on your own.

Get in touch with me to learn more about branding your real estate business. With my help, you may be well on your way to developing a positive reputation for yourself and maximizing this to grow your bottom line in the months and years ahead.

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free MBA

How To Get An MBA-Level Education For Free (Or Even While Getting Paid)

As detailed in a ThoughtCo article, the average tuition to obtain an MBA degree exceeds $60,000 and can be more than $100,000 for a top U.S. business school. Obtaining an MBA degree online can be cheaper, but expect to pay at least $7,000 to $120,000 or more on a top online program. Then add to that the costs of books, boarding and supplies.

Of course, you can obtain financial aid, but then you’ll have to pay back your initial loan balance with interest, leaving you in debt for years — maybe even decades.

But what if I told you there’s a way to obtain an MBA-level education for free or, even better, while making money? This can be accomplished by creating a thought leadership platform.

A thought leadership platform is an online networking tool where you produce valuable content about a specific business niche and share it with the world. Typically, an entrepreneur creates a thought leadership platform in order to build a reputable brand and/or promote their business. However, for the purposes of gaining an MBA-level education, the same thought leadership platform can be used to curate a customized educational program while also allowing you to network with business professionals who are currently working in the industry you want to enter. All of this can occur without having to go into debt — or even while collecting a paycheck.

Examples of thought leadership platforms include podcasts, YouTube channels and blogs. Regardless of which option you pursue, I would recommend having the platform be interview-based. That means you conduct interviews with business professionals who are currently working in your desired industry.

 

In my mind, this avenue offers four main advantages over an MBA degree:

 

1. You can build relationships with active professionals in the industry. For example, instead of going to business school for two years and sitting in a classroom, you could conduct one interview a week for two years with people who are active and already successful in the real world. That’s over 100 conversations or “lessons.” Or you can do what I do, which is to conduct daily interviews. That’s over 700 “lessons” in two years as well as over 700 networking opportunities to find a potential employer or business partner.

2. It can be significantly cheaper. Creating a thought leadership platform can be low-cost. If you decide to create a podcast, you only need a laptop and a microphone to get started — or for the most economical approach, all you need is a smartphone. Additionally, once you’ve built a large enough following, it provides you with the opportunity to make money through paid sponsorships.

3. You can add value to the interviewee. Since they work in or run a business, they’ll get free exposure. Also, you add value to the listeners because they’re getting the same real-world education from the people who are actually working in the industry.

4. You can position yourself as an expert in the industry. You can become known as the go-to resource for the best information and strategies for a specific industry. As your audience and reputation grow, you’ll attract better, more successful guests, which in turn can increase your audience, reputation and quality of business opportunities. Then, as an expert with a large following who is known to attract big-name guests, you can monetize your thought leadership platform by bringing on sponsors.

 

So, how do you get started on your MBA-level education?

 

1. Select a thought leadership platform. Choose a platform based on what you enjoy doing. For example, if you like speaking but are camera shy, create a podcast. Also, make sure you’re able to tap into a large built-in audience. Consider iTunes, YouTube or WordPress.

2. Set a consistent publishing frequency. Just like business school, you need to set a schedule. Weekly or daily is ideal.

3. Create a content calendar. This is like your business school syllabus that outlines a plan for the year. You should have your content planned at least a month in advance, which starts with scheduling interviews.

The type of person you’ll interview will depend on the specific industry you enter. The more specific you are, the better. For example, if you want to become an apartment syndicator (which is what I do), don’t just interview anyone who is involved in real estate. Instead, focus on the professionals who specialize in apartments, like other syndicators, commercial lenders and multifamily property managers and brokers.

Once you’ve specified an industry, find people in that industry to interview. Search for individuals or groups related to the industry on social media (Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn). Find other thought leaders in the industry on iTunes, YouTube, Google and industry-specific blogs and forums. Search Amazon for authors who write about the industry.

When you reach out, state that you’re interested in interviewing them on your platform. Tell them you created it to educate yourself on the industry, as well as to provide valuable content to others who may be interested in entering the industry.

 

I don’t have an MBA. But I’ve hosted a daily real estate investing podcast for nearly four years, which means I’ve had over 1,400 conversations with real estate professionals that have been listened to over 7 million times. As a direct result of the education I’ve received and relationships I’ve formed, I’ve gone from making $30,000 a year at a New York advertising company to controlling $400 million in apartment communities, as well as earning revenue from podcast sponsorships.

That’s the power of a thought leadership platform.

 

Want to learn how to build an apartment syndication empire? Purchase the world’s first and only comprehensive book on the exact step-by-step process for completing your first apartment syndication: Best Ever Apartment Syndication Book

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How to Create the Largest Real Estate Meetup in Your Market

In a previous blog post, which you can read here, I provided meetup three case studies that can be used as a guide, or replicated entirely, for creating your own meetup group in your market.

 

However, at the 2018 Best Ever Conference, I had an insightful conversation with Adam Adams, who created the largest meetup group in Denver. I walked away from that conversation with the four creative tactics he uses to quickly and continually grow his meetup group.

 

If you’ve already established a meetup group, no problem! Because these can be applied to both starting a meetup group from scratch or massively scaling an existing group.

 

1 – Host a Weekly Meetup

 

The first tip was to host a weekly meetup group, as opposed to monthly or bimonthly. The main assumption behind this tactic is that the more meetups you host, the faster it will grow. Therefore, by hosting weekly meetups, your group will grow 4 to 5 times faster!

 

This tactic is most effective when you are starting a meetup from scratch. The exception would be to ask the members of your existing meetup group for their thoughts on increasing the meeting frequency. Or, if you are in a larger market, you can continue hosting your monthly meetup group, but also start hosting three other meetup groups at different submarkets or neighborhoods across the city.

 

Also, this tactic is most effective when your meetup structure either involves inviting a speaker or is such that people have a reason to attend more often than once a month.

 

For example, one of the meetup case studies I outlined in a previous meetup blog post was on an investor who hosts his meetup more frequently than once a week (4 times a week). Even though most of the members only attend a few meetups per week, his success proves the weekly meetup concept.

 

On the other hand, each of Adam’s weekly meetups feature a guest presenter. Since you need to book a new speaker each a week, this structure requires a little more effort on your part. However, the reason why putting forth his extra effort is worth it ties into tactic number 2…

 

2 – Invite a Speaker

 

Inviting a guest speaker to present valuable information to the group is not only advantageous because it will naturally attract more people, but also because you can leverage the speaker to proactively attract even more attendees.

 

Out of all the tactics, this is Adam’s most creative. Let’s say you invite a multifamily investor to give a presentation on five ways to find off-market apartment deals. Once they’ve confirmed, go online, find local multifamily groups/networks and personally invite members of those groups/networks to that specific meetup.

 

On Meetup.com and Facebook, find the local multifamily group and message the most recent 30 to 50 members. On LinkedIn, either follow a similar approach or search for local individual professionals that are involved with multifamily and send them a message. On BiggerPockets, perform a search to find members who are local and involved with multifamily and invite them to your meetup.

 

Regardless of which approach you follow, you will send the same message. If you have a multifamily speaker, the message should say, “Hi. I host a real estate investing meetup group in (insert your city). At our next meeting, we have a multifamily investor that will be presenting on how to find off-market deals. I saw that you are involved in the multifamily niche and thought that you would find value in attending. Do you want me to send you a link so you can sign up for the meeting?”

 

Don’t just send them a link. Instead, ask them if they want you to send them the link. Adam has tried both strategies and found that messages where he asks to send the link have a higher response and conversion rate.

 

3 – Cap the Event Size

 

Another minor, yet extremely effective, strategy is to place a cap on the number of people who can attend the meetup. If you are posting your meetup on Meetup.com, you will have the option to limit the number of available spots.

 

The purpose of capping the event size is two-fold. One, it promotes scarcity. When someone visits the meetup page and sees that there are only a few spots remaining, they are more likely to sign up.

 

The other reason is to have a meetup that always reaches capacity. Now, you may be asking, “Well how do I determine the number of spots to offer in order to reach capacity?” Adam’s answer is that you don’t have to! Let’s say you are hosting your first meetup group. Once you create the invitation, set the number of available spots to 10. If the event sells out, you can manually move the people on the “waitlist” to the “attending list” or you can increase the number of spots. However, on the day of the meetup, before leaving your house, edit the number of available spots so that it equals the number of people attending. In doing so, you will technically always reach capacity.

 

The reason why you want to always reach capacity is so you can leverage that fact when inviting guest speakers. What invitation sounds more attractive, A or B?

 

  1. “Hi. I host a weekly meetup group. We currently average 10 members per meeting. Would you be interested in being our featured speaker next week?”
  2. “Hi. I host a weekly meetup group. Every meeting has completely sold out! Would you be interested in being our featured speaker next week?”

 

Positioning your meetup as always reaching capacity will increase its desirability in the eyes of potential speaker, which will also increase the chances of them accepting your invitation.

 

4 – What Happened and What Will Happen?

 

The last tactic is to continuously contact the members of your group. However, this doesn’t mean bombarding their inbox with useless emails. Only contact the members when you have a new piece of information to share. Adam broke down the times that it’s relevant to contact members of your meetup group into two categories: what has happened and what will happen.

 

For example, at each meetup group, take a lot of pictures. The next day, post those pictures to your social media page, tagging those in attendance and thanking them for coming. Or, if you had a presenter, write a quick blog post that recaps the top takeaways.

 

When you book at new speaker, send a message out to the meetup members, notifying them on who the presenter is and what they will be speaking on. Send a reminder a week and a day before an upcoming meetup. If you come across a piece of real estate content that will add value to your members businesses, send them a link.

 

The purpose of these messages is to create a sense of community. Because with a strong sense of community, members are more likely to continue coming back and are more likely to invite their friends or business colleagues.

 

 

Huge thanks to Adam Adams for providing these tips, and I am looking forward to hearing your success stories after you’ve applied these tactics to your meetup!

 

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How a $10 Million Agent Generates FREE Leads With Facebook

Spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on online marketing is a great way to obtain quality real estate leads. However, some real estate professionals – and I would say especially those who are just starting out and are strapped for cash – implement creative strategies to reduce or even eliminate their marketing budget, either out of necessity or to just increase their overall bottom line. But regardless of your experience level or spending capabilities, all real estate professionals and investors should be actively searching for ways to decrease their cost per lead.

 

Trish Williams, an agent and broker out of Las Vegas, started her real estate career in 2014. She devised a FREE marketing tactic which accounts for 90% of her $10 million in real estate transactions. Trish’s primary source of new customers are through referrals from Facebook. Essentially, she offers intriguing content on her personal Facebook page on a consistent basis, building up her credibility, so that whenever someone is ready to buy or sell their home, or personally knows someone who is, she’s the first person they reach out to. In our recent conversation, she explained her process for obtaining referrals through her personal Facebook page. You can apply these techniques to your business, regardless of the real estate niche you pursue.

 

How to grow your Facebook friend’s list?

 

One of the main focuses of Trish’s referral process is to build and grow your personal Facebook friend’s list. The more friends you have, the more potential direct and indirect referrals you’ll receive (as long as you’re posting the right kind of content, which will be discussed in the next section).

 

Besides organic growth, she has two active methods for adding new friends. First is through networking…EVERYWHERE. She said, “Every time when I meet somebody, if I meet you at the grocery store [for example] and we have a conversation, I ask you your name and I’m going to add you as a friend to my Facebook.”

 

Two is through her business page. She said, “I haven’t really figured out how to convert those people or grab them, so I add them as friends. I just add them to my personal page, because I have such a better conversation rate of converting people through that.”

 

Both of these tactics can be applied to any real estate niche. When you’re out and about, talking to people with passion about your real estate business, ask them for their name and add them to your friend’s list. Also, you should already have a business page or group on Facebook, so every time you receive a new like or a new member joins your group, add them as a friend.

 

What should you post?

 

The key to Trish’s referral process is the type of content you post. Since the goal is to establish credibility and trust with your followers, she said, “I’m not marketing. I don’t ever want to sound like a commercial. I’m just talking about what I do.” So, your content should be natural, genuine, authentic and add value, as opposed to gimmicky marketing or obvious advertising.

 

The specific content you post will vary depending on your niche. Since Trish is a real estate agent, her posts simply show what she is doing on a day-to-day basis. One approach she uses is to post pictures. “If I have an experience, if I’m out at a house and it has an amazing kitchen, I’m going to post it. If I see something that has great investment potential, I’m going to post it,” she said. “If I get an award, I’m posting a picture of me with the award, or if something happens – every success I’m posting about.”

 

Another approach that has a great response rate are videos. Trish posts videos all the time. She said, “If I’ve been out door-knocking, I post a video. I show people the yard of the neighborhood or the view of the street. If I’m at a new construction home, grand opening for a model home, I post a video of it.”

 

The video approach is a great way to build relationships without actually having to meet people in person. “People get used to seeing me,” Trish said. “They know me because I’m always posting videos, and they’re not professional videos. Sometimes my hair is crazy or whatever, but I’m still a person and people really like that.”

 

Since it is her personal Facebook page, not everything she posts is business related. She will post things about her personal life too. However, she did recommend that you avoid posting about divisive topics. She said, “I stay out of politics. I stay out of any kind of things that are controversial. I never ever post about anything that has to do with those. I don’t want to alienate people whatsoever, so I always keep a neutral stance, stay positive, and try to be that person that people really want to work with.”

 

When should you post?

 

Trish posts the type of content outline about at least every other day.

 

On top of that, she is on Facebook every day, commenting and liking other people’s content. However, that doesn’t mean she’s mindlessly scrolling through her news feed, liking and commenting on every single post. Remember, the goal is authenticity and genuineness. If you like every post, eventually people are going to catch on to what you are doing. Instead, Trish said, “I take interest in what other people are doing. I see what’s going on in their life and that helps me too to know who may need assistance. I do just make it a habit every day to scroll through, take a few minutes, see what people are doing. Whatever is at the top of my newsfeed.”

Finally, she always reaches out on birthdays. “Just Happy Birthday! If there’s something I know special about them, or what’s going on in their world, I mention it.”

 

Conclusion

 

Trish attracts the majority of her real estate business through Facebook referrals. She accomplishes this by networking to build her friend’s list, then posts genuine, natural content at least every other day, as well as likes and comments on other people’s posts and wishing people happy birthday.

 

Besides being simple and low cost, an advantage of this approach, as Trish mentioned, is that you’re establishing rapport with people before meeting them in person. It’s a completely different conversation when someone already knows you prior to sitting down or jumping on a call with them, compared to being complete strangers and then have to build up from nothing.

 

What FREE marketing tactic have you used with success in your real estate business?

 

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A Digital Nomad’s Scientific Approach to Promoting Your Personal Brand

In a well-known study conducted by Psychologist Dr. Albert Mehrabian, our ability to communicate effectively can be broken into three categories: spoken words, voice and tone, and body language. According to the study, when attempting to convey a message, only 7% of your success is based on the actual spoken words, while the remaining 93% is based on our tone and body language.

Amber Renae, a civil engineer turned branding expert, applies the conclusions of Dr. Mehrabian’s study to brand building. In our recent conversation, she outlined her three-pronged approach to effectively and efficiently promoting your personal brand to grow your real estate investing business.

 

Why Build a Brand?

Ultimately, the idea behind building a powerful brand is that it will allow your ideal customer to find you. How they’ll find you will vary, but generally, it’ll be through your website or social media platform. Once they do, Amber says, “they’ll immediately click over to the other one to see if there’s consistency. If they find that your social channels look like your website, then they start to see consistency. Then, they look for evidence of you showing up in person or in real life – on things like videos, live events, podcasts, speaking engagements, things like that. If all three of those are cohesive and consistent, then they start to depend on you, and once your audience depends on you, they have confidence in you. Once they have confidence, then they start to trust you, and you know what comes after trust…sales.”

Therefore, the key to increasing your bottom line is to create a cohesive and consistent online and offline person brand.

In order to tip that first domino in the buying funnel (i.e. attracting your ideal customer), Amber teaches a three-pronged approach that focuses on the communication factors that impact 93% of a message’s or brand’s success, which she’s broken down into presentation, performance, and publicity.

 

1 – Presentation

The first factor of a powerful brand is your presentation. More specifically, it is about forming a unique signature style.

Amber said, “some inspired actions that you can start taking today is to just start thinking of yourself through the lens of a personal brand – what makes you unique? What makes you stand out from the competition? What are you doing differently from the rest of the marketplace?”

Ask yourself these questions, write out the answers and use them to develop your brand objectives. Then, based on your personal brand objectives, start to think about how you can incorporate them into a signature style that is unique to you.

Amber says to take your signature style and apply it “across your body language, your vocal performance, how you engage in conversations, and how you treat other people.” You want to be that person who has great body language and who holds themselves with really high confidence and self-esteem, which is accomplished when you have defined a signature style and apply it to your online and offline presentation.

 

2 – Performance

The next factor is your performance. A performance is anything you are actually presenting to your ideal audience – podcasting, videos, public speaking, Facebook live, Periscopes, etc.

Amber said, “No longer can you just write a blog post or do a social media share and expect that your ideal client is going to find you and connect with you. As a society, we crave connection, and it’s our responsibility as entrepreneurs to create a brand that connects halfway with people. The way that you do that is by creating things like a podcast, videos, doing live streams, etc. Anything that builds authority and thought leadership, because this is the way that you ignite a movement. This is the way that you get trust with your audience.”

When “performing,” this doesn’t mean you’re being fake or unauthentic. But since the goal of our brand is to ultimately build trust and gain confidence from our audience, this cannot be accomplished without an online and offline presence. We must use our signature style to get our faces in front of our customers.

 

3 – Publicity

Finally, once we’ve identified our unique style and our presentation approach, the last step is to publicize our brand. Building your own platform will be time-consuming, expensive, and laborious. But a good shortcut is to leverage other people’s audience, which will get your message spread a lot faster and to a much wider audience.

“It’s really just a matter of finding people that are creating great content and reaching out to them and going, ‘Hey, I’m going something interesting. Do you want to connect?’,” Amber said. For an exact process for how to get on other people’s podcasts, for example, read this blog post – The Ultimate Guide to Getting Booked as a Guest on ANY Podcast – which is based on an interview I had with Jessica Rhodes, the founder of a premier guest booking agency.

 

Now that you know the three main factors to focus on, it’s time to build out your thought leadership platform. Here is a link to the “Branding and Thought Leadership” section, which includes multiple posts on creating and growing a thought leadership platform.

 

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8 Ways to Promote and Grow Your Thought Leadership Platform

After you’ve created your thought leadership platform (read here to learn how), one of the next steps is attract your target demographic. Through over a thousand of conversations with business and real estate thought leaders, as well as from building a large following of my own, I’ve discovered the most effective ways to attract people to a thought leadership platform.

 

Here are the top 8 ways to promote your thought leadership platform and grow your audience.

 

1. Build an opt-in page

 

First, build an opt-in page or button for your website. The main purpose of an opt-in is to capture email addresses and build an email list.

 

The key to a powerful opt-in page is the offering. You need to give people a reason to provide you with their email address. A poor opt-in page, for example, would read “Please enter your email address to be sent an update when new content is posted.” Instead, you want to create a piece of valuable content and exchange that for their contact information. For example, on the main page of my website, I have an opt-in banner presented front and center that reads “Free Download of 24 Proven Ways to Get Off-Market Deals” and a button that reads “Get Access!” I’ve also place the banner at the top of certain pages on my website, like the podcast and blog page. Once someone enters their email address, they are automatically sent a document with 24 ways to find off-market deals.

 

Additionally, I’ve created a pop-up opt-in that appears a few seconds after a visitor views a page other than my main page. Currently, the opt-in reads “How do I break into the multifamily syndication business? is the most common question I receive. These 6 amazing powerful ways are proven to get your foot in the door! Are you ready? Don’t miss this!” Again, once someone enters their email address, they are automatically sent a document with 6 ways to break into the syndication industry.

 

As you can see, both of my offerings are related to apartment syndication. That’s because my secondary target audience are individuals interested in becoming apartment syndicators. Therefore, you should create an offering that is specific to your target audience, rather than something general to real estate investing. That way, you’ll know that every email address captured is a qualified lead.

 

If you are an apartment syndicator, your primary target audience are accredited investors. So, you also want to create a lead capture page where accredited investors interested in passively investing in your deals have a way to provide you with their information. For an example, here is the opt-in page I have for my website: www.investwithjoe.com. It can be accessed either on my main page or by Googling Invest With Joe. Considering purchasing a domain name like www.investwith(your name).com. If you aren’t an apartment syndicator, create a separate lead capture form based on your target customer or primary outcome (e.g. a form for home owners who are interested in selling their primary residence).

 

2. Create a BiggerPockets Pro Account

 

A BiggerPockets Pro account is another great tool for promoting your thought leadership platform.

 

First, create a forum signature, which allows you to input your contact information, company name, logo and website/thought leadership platform link. Then, set up forum keyword alerts so that you will be notified whenever someone submits a post that is related to your niche. As an apartment syndicator, the important keywords I have are “market name,” apartment,” “multifamily,” “syndication,” and “accredited.”

 

Whenever you are notified of a new post that contains your keyword, you can submit a reply and anyone who reads that thread will see your response, as well as the link to your website or thought leadership platform. Also, you can start a forum thread of your own, making sure you include the relevant keywords so other apartment investors or syndicators who have keyword alerts setup will be notified and will read your post. Both of these strategies will drive traffic to your website or thought leadership platform.

 

Additionally, you can use the BiggerPockets member blog function to publish or republish your thought leadership content. You can even include crosslinks back to content on your website, but I recommend reading the rules of the blog before doing so.

 

3. Send out a newsletter

 

Generate and send out a newsletter to the email list you’re building from your opt-in forms. Since you are already creating valuable content on a consistent basis, the newsletter is an opportunity to repurpose that content. Depending on how much content you’re creating, you can start with a monthly newsletter, but the goal is to eventually work towards sending out a weekly newsletter.

 

A great tip for increasing the amount of content you create is repurposing previous published content. For example, if your thought leadership platform is a podcast, write a blog post that summarizes the main takeaways from the interview and include both the podcast and the blog post in your newsletter.

 

The service I use to create my newsletters is MailChimp. Click here for an example of my weekly newsletter, where I include all of the new content I created the previous week.

 

4. Promote content through others people’s platforms

 

If are doing an interview-based thought leadership platform, which I strongly recommend, ask your guests to promote your content on their website, social media and newsletter. Just be sure to include links back to your website or an opt-in button to capture email addresses.

 

I’ve found that having your content featured in other people’s newsletters is the best approach. So, when you are reaching out to individuals to be a guest on your thought leadership platform, ask them to commit to publishing the content in their next newsletter or simply sending the link to their email list after the interview has gone live.

 

5. Become a guest on other people’s platforms

 

In addition to having other people promote your content in their newsletter, you can also reach out to other thought leaders and become a guest on their platform – whether it is being interviewed on their podcast or writing a guest post for their blog.

 

I interviewed Jessica Rhodes, the founder of a premier guest booking agency for podcasters, on my episode 1013 of my podcast (click here for the full interview). From this interview, I created a blog post entitled “The Ultimate Guide to Getting Booked as a Guest on ANY Podcast” (click here to read the post) where I outline – as the title implies – how to approach getting on other podcasts.

 

6. Leverage social media

 

The simplest way to promote your thought leadership platform is to publish new content on social media. At first, you can manually publish content across multiple social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Or, if your thought leadership platform is a podcast, the hosting site you use should have a function that will automatically submit a post to the different social media sites each time you post a new episode. And you can do the same on YouTube.

 

As you build up a library of content, you can begin to republish old content. There are many online services that will allow you to create a schedule to automatically post old content at a specified time. Two providers that I’ve had success with are MeetEdgar and SmarterQueue. Currently, I have two older pieces of content scheduled to be posted on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn each day, on top of posting a new blog post and podcast.

 

7. Build a Facebook community

 

A great way to not only attract new listeners or viewers, but to also create loyalty with your current followers is to build a Facebook community. For example, I created a Facebook community called “Best Ever Show Community.” It is a place where the Best Ever listeners can interact with me, each other, and my guests.

 

My goal for the group is to create a community where everyone is helping each other reach the next level in their business and lives. Along with that, it is a place where I encourage everyone to ask and answer questions, add likeminded individuals, post any asks or needs they have, share insightful articles, books, videos, podcast, etc., tell us about themselves and their focus and post success stories. Additionally, a few times a week, I will create posts with the purpose of creating conversations within the group. For example, I will ask a question, like “where do most of your deals come from?”, and members of the group will provide their answers. The more interactions and conversations you have, the more valuable the community and the larger it will grow.

 

8. End with a call-to-action

 

Finally, for any content you create, end with a call to action. You should tell everyone listening to your podcast, watching your YouTube video or reading your blog post to perform a specific task.

 

Examples of call-to-actions are:

 

  1. A strong question to promote a conversation in the comment section
  2. A link to a related piece of content
  3. Send them to your website page
  4. Subscribe and leave a review
  5. Opt-in page that offers a valuable piece of content in exchange for their email address

 

For more information on how to increase traffic to your website and customer conversion, read this Q&A with Online Marketing Expert Neil Patel: 6 Ways to Increase Your Website Traffic

 

What have you found to be the best way to promote content?

 

Also, subscribe to my weekly newsletter for even more Best Ever advice: http://eepurl.com/01dAD

                       

If you have any comments or questions, leave a comment below.

 

 

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