Getting Your Real Estate Life Together: Q&A with John Grafft

Name, Location and how long have you been an Agent *

John Grafft, Chicago, 11 years

How would you describe your brand?

Raw and real urban agent without a car that sells cheap condos and million-dollar homes.

How do you differentiate yourself?

Being real - no fancy car, no sales pitch, just facts and knowledge to stand out.

What marketing method is most effective for you and why?

Video - It validates my expertise at the prospect's convenience in the comfort of where ever they are. I'm selling myself without the awkwardness of actually selling in person. When I'm in person I focus on the client, not myself.

What marketing method is least effective for you and why?

Traditional networking - I stopped doing this. Successful people aren't going to generic networking events. They already have the network or are too busy and don't see the need. It tends to be a room full of people trying to meet people for opportunities. It rarely pans out.

What are your three favorite ways to start a conversation?

Give a compliment - I like your....

Ask an opinion - What do you think of....

Random observation - Did you know...

How are you elevating the look and feel of your business? 

Why should it be elevated? If my target market is a volume business of ~250k highrise 1 bedrooms than I would alienate my client base by catering to "luxury". Side note: luxury has a different definition for everyone; most of what is marketed as luxury is a faux luxury. It's too subjective. It's the most overused word in real estate. We can put a pin in that...:). I've worn more gym shorts and branded wicking t-shirts in the last 3 months than I work suits the 3 months prior and am not getting any criticism. Showing the neighborhood you're a real person and not a douche wearing a uniform suit makes you more approachable. The higher-end business in my neighborhood is harder to get your foot in the door and the market time is 700 days vs 7. The high end is great, but it's better to be the second or third broker with the listing, not the first.

What's one piece of advice you would give a new agent?

Think long and hard about what you choose to focus on because pivoting from that later one might be more difficult than you think.

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