This week I'm talking with my good friend Kenny MacCarthy. The conversation turned into a really great example of how the first 4 profit activators (the Before unit) can work together in harmony to create exceptional results in an automated, predictable way.
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Transcript - More Cheese Less Whiskers 004
Dean: Hi, this is Dean Jackson. Welcome back to another episode of More Cheese, Less Whiskers, and today we're going to be talking with Kenny MacCarthy who's a realtor up in Cape Ann, Massachusetts. I've known Kenny for several years. We've been working together on a lot of his real estate marketing things. It's a funny story how he ended up being on today's episode and I'll tell you that when we get started, but this episode turned into a really great illustration of exactly how the first for profit activators, the before unit, can work together in harmony, can work together in an automated kind of way to create a result. I call that an algorithm.
When you've got the algorithm that you can select a single target market you've got a way that you've figured out to, in profit activator two, get people to raise their hand. You've got, in profit activator three, a way to consistently, patiently, systematically, educate and motivate people until they're ready to take action. That's profit activator three, and you've got some well thought out offers that will trigger people moving into your during unit. We really go in depth on how that all works in harmony, and that's my goal, really, for anybody with a desire to set up an automated before unit is that we get to a point where can describe the way that your before unit works just as if it were being featured on an episode of how it's made, that show on Discovery Channel where they narrate different manufacturing processes.
Your before unit system should be just as predictable, just as easily narrated and described. You'll hear in future episodes how people will be in different levels of their completion in that before unit and you'll be able to reference back to this episode to hear what it actually sounds like when you have a before unit that works. You'll see and hear now how Kenny talks about the ongoing, the return on investment over several years of running this what we call the "getting listings" system, and then we talked about how to now scale that and parlay that into a situation where Kenny could do what he loves to do which is make the phone ring and not have to be involved in actually doing any of the transactional stuff.
I think you're going to love this episode. Let me know if you do, and again, if you'd like to be on the show so we could hatch some evil schemes together just go to MoreCheeseLessWhiskers.com, you can download a copy of the More Cheese, Less Whiskers book, and if you'd like to be a guest you can click on the be a guest link on the site and maybe we can hatch some evil schemes together. Enjoy this episode.
Dean: Kenny MacCarthy.
Kenny: Dean Jackson, what's going on.
Dean: There we are. Okay, cut all that background noise out, we're recording right now.
Kenny: Okay. Didn't realize you were starting already.
Dean: We are recording. We keep it real. I have to tell the story about today because this is really, it's meant to be today, because I was in Punta Cana and Palm Beach this week, and I was going to record an episode while I was in Punta Cana. It didn't work out, and I woke up this morning, I got back from Palm Beach last night, I woke up this morning thinking, "Okay, I need to go through - I've got all of these people who have requested and filled out the form to be a guest on the show." I'm thinking that thought, "I need to look through, see who I can record with today," and this is 7:30 in the morning I woke up and literally at 7:20 your email had come through.
Kenny: You pulled me?
Dean: It was meant to be. Isn't that funny?
Kenny: I love that. Like Steven Wright says, "It's a small world, Dean, but I wouldn't want to paint it."
Dean: Wouldn't want to paint it, exactly. I'm excited that it's you. This is great because we have a lot of history and we've been working together for a long time. Let's talk about what's - because normally I don't know people, so we'll do an introduction to try to tell people who you are, what you do. Maybe we could talk a little bit about what's working right now and then what kind of evil scheme we want to hatch today for you.
Kenny: Okay. You want me to do the introduction?
Kenny: Who I am, what I'm doing?
Kenny: I am a twenty-five year veteran of the real estate business, and I was with RE/MAX for a long time. I moved to Sotheby's three years ago, and got a team. There are three of us. We've recently our own administrator. I love the business. I have been trying to work myself off of the street over the last two or three years. That was the impetus behind hiring the team at your urging and your advice, and it's been working. It's actually working very well. It seems the further away I get from the street the more money we make.
Dean: What's the correlation there, Dean?
Kenny: I'm in a market of - I'm in the Northeast, I'm north of Boston, in an area known as Cape Ann. A lot of waterfront property, open ocean property. Average price right now that I'm working on actually is right around a million dollars. I think we have fifteen active listings right now.
Kenny: Yeah, we have plenty of business, but there's room for more. There's room for more.
Dean: I think what would be a really good thing is you've been sharing with me in the last ninety days or so since you were down here in the spring that the ... it's a longevity here, the long game of doing the getting listings program. Just for context, how long has it been since when we talk about profit activator one you chose Cape Ann waterfront as the market? That was just three and a half years that you've been doing the waterfront?
Kenny: No, it's longer than that. I think it's probably - it was this time of year, and I think it was five years, might even be six years now but five, anyways.
Dean: Wow. Talk a little bit about what your strategy has been there and how that's working so far, because you've got some longevity with that.
Kenny: Sure. I started with a contained focused area of about a thousand - I think it was actually nine hundred, we'll round it to a thousand - a thousand waterfront addresses and mailed your postcards, the yellow postcards. Month two I had a listing from the postcard, a $600,000 listing. They continued to make the phone ring ten months out of the year - I was mailing them every month. I added to the list, changed from waterfront, I decided to change the focus. It was too hard to figure out which was waterfront and which wasn't, and my database here from the assessor's office I just picked a number, nine hundred thousand or eight fifty up that encompassed all the waterfront. Let's face it, if it's not on the water but it's eight fifty I wouldn't mind hanging my sign out front.
I ended up increasing my reach to almost two thousand homes. That's what I continued to mail and to this day I continue to mail to them. I can't tell you off the top of my head how many I've had this year. I know my dollars in to dollars out are at least seven to one.
Dean: Right, that's great. Over the whole period of time?
Kenny: Seven dollars out to a dollar spent. Yes.
Dean: That's a great example. When you and I sat down with the napkin and drew out the plan for that and drew, it's one of my favorite things to do is look at that, the ROI chart and start with -
Kenny: Mine, too.
Dean: Yeah, start from the very beginning and then look at how much money you're spending, because you've been mailing postcards now for five years pretty consistently eight or ten times throughout the course of the year. You mentioned that you did the first transaction in month two and it was $600,000. What I look for on those are where do you reach escape velocity? Where do you reach? When you closed on that first one, you already had a big ROI on mailing for two or three or four months by the time it closed. Everything from there forward is - it's pretty interesting to lay out a graph like that, to show how everything then is self-sustaining. That it's really you're playing now for the rest of this five years you've been playing with house money and letting your seed investment grow and grow and grow and reinvesting to let it go.
I love that you're one of the people who really likes to monitor that kind of thing, too. Tony Kalsi just sent me, he's a realtor in Toronto, sent me his two-year chart for getting listings. He's up to, I think, seven thousand homes now that he mails to, so he's spent $24,000 over the last two years but had made $270,000 from that. It was twelve point something, almost thirteen to one. I love that whole mindset of letting things parlay like that, and it's perfect profit activators. I always use the real estate stuff as an example of how the before unit to be narrated. I always use that example of that show on Discovery Channel How It's Made.
I ask people, "Can you describe to me how your before unit works as if it was a manufacturing process?" I explain to people the getting listings program as an example where we select a single target market, waterfront homes in Cape Ann. We, in profit activator two, how do we get them to raise their hand? We send an offer for the free August 2016 report on Cape Anne -
Kenny: Waterfront properties.
Dean: - waterfront house prices, and then that moves people who raise their hand into profit activator three where every single month we mail them a get top dollar newsletter and make offers for them to raise their hand. We talk about this idea of the "Would you like a cookie?" rather than if I brought you into the kitchen and said, "Hey, there's lots of stuff in the fridge," and we talk about that in the -
Kenny: Help yourself, right.
Dean: - breakthrough DNA book, but the offers that we make for on the getting listings side we know that people are either going to want to know how much their house is worth. They're going to want to know what they should do to fix it up, or if you had a buyer they might think of selling it, so we package up our offers and say, "Whenever you're ready, here are three ways we can help you. We've got a pinpoint price analysis where we can come out and show you exactly what your house would sell for compared to other homes on the market right now, we've got a room by room review where we can show you everything to do or not do to prepare your house to get it ready to get the most when you sell, and we've got a silent market where we may be able to sell your house in as little as twenty-four hours without even putting it on the market.
That system, I just narrate that to give people a context there, but what I was most excited about and what I've been sharing with people is how you shared with me in the last ninety days, sixty days or ninety days, you've had calls from at least two people that I know of that have been getting your newsletters for over three years now.
Kenny: Correct. There is definitely an incubation period.
Dean: What happened with those?
Kenny: I haven't tracked the period of time. I do know that both people that contacted me we have contracts with them, and they had been getting our Marketwatch they got the postcard first and then they got the monthly follow up, which was the second step of the activator, and they've been getting the monthly, the white envelope, the envelope that causes the mailbox excitement every month as you put it, they've been getting that ten months out of the year for three years, and they finally were ready. The statement that they made, both of them, when I spoke to them, I recognized their name because I've seen it on the list every month, and, "You're ready?" They said, "Yeah, and we've been getting things from you all this time. When can you come over and list our house?" It wasn't, "When can you come over and interview? We want to talk to you." It was, "We're ready, when can you come over?".
Dean: Kenny, as soon as they responded I imagine you jumped right on the phone and called them right away, right? Or, you ran over to their house to try and get them to list right now, didn't you?
Kenny: No. You're setting me up, Dean. I know you're setting me up.
Dean: I was setting you up for that, but the funny thing that that's the natural reaction that people generally when they are generating leads they want to jump right on them, but you never spoke to them until they called you.
Kenny: That's correct, that's correct.
Dean: And it took three years -
Kenny: I was following the plan, Dean. I was following your instructions. You told me at the beginning halfway through it, because I love to fix stuff, you know that. We've known each other for a long time. I want to fix it, Dean, and I think I should call them after they raise their hand or after a period of time, and you kept saying to me, "Kenny, Kenny, Kenny. Don't fix it, it's not broken. Leave them alone," and I did. I don't call them, I wait for them to call me. Sooner or later, if they're ready, they're going to call me, and if they don't, that's okay, too.
Dean: Exactly, and here are these people, now just those two that you shared with me in the last are combined five or six million dollars, isn't it? Is that the two were -
Kenny: Hold on a second, I can tell you. No, it wasn't that much, but one was just under a million and the other one was just under two million.
Dean: Okay. There you go.
Kenny: Almost three million, yeah.
Dean: The thing is that having that patience and knowing that just continuing to educate and motivate [inaudible 00:19:29] to doing it on there patiently and systematically. That's the words that people often don't pay attention to in the profit activators. We say patiently and systematically educate and motivate your prospects until they're ready - when they're ready, on their time.
Kenny: They create their own velocity and we can make it compelling - maybe that's the wrong word. I love that word, though. I love that word compelling -
Dean: No, the offers.
Kenny: Your offers are compelling.
Dean: You sent me the voicemail that the one lady had left you asking about the silent market, using those exact words and -
Kenny: Oh my gosh, I remember - yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, we're still talking. That's a four million dollar house.
Dean: Okay, so these are two other ones that you're talking -
Kenny: That hasn't happened yet.
Dean: - about then because - got you, so it's three then -
Kenny: These are two different ones. That one hasn't happened yet, so yes that's a third one.
Dean: And that one was a four million dollar house, right?
Kenny: That's a four million dollar house, yes.
Dean: But left a voicemail for you that says, "I get your paperwork." She sounded like a foreign lady from somewhere -
Kenny: She's actually from Brazil. She's from Brazil.
Dean: Okay, so she had an accent, but she said, "I get your paperwork every month and you talk about the silent market. Can you call me and tell me about that?" That's just fascinating, but I think that it's very telling that here's something that you've got that works without you, because I know I was texting you about what would it be like to talk about. Let's move now that we've established the backstory let's move into what kind of evil schemes you want to hatch today going forward.
Kenny: Sure. As I mentioned, I've been trying to get further and further off the street, as I put it off the street, and have my team, my partners, handle the people. I'm old and cranky and I would just as soon sit in my evil scheme hatchery and never come out if I don't have to. I've gotten to that point now where I do an awful lot more. I rarely show houses anymore, I rarely go on listings appointments. I may go and meet the new client once. I've gotten it to that point but I still want to get further off the street. I want to hire a couple more people.
The first episode of this series I just listened to with the immigration lawyer that you interviewed.
Dean: Yes, Jim Hacking.
Kenny: Yep. You were going through his numbers and my gosh, he had some fabulous numbers. I was drooling over his focused list of people.
Dean: Yeah, over a thousand people.
Kenny: Oh my gosh, that he had helped and that were - I'm saying to myself, "Knowing what I know now I want to go to law school and get that list." Lost it - where was I going with this? The takeaway from that episode was you said that so many practitioners, I'm paraphrasing now, but that one of the problems practitioners were afraid to take themselves out of the equation. We're afraid to not practice anymore. Good lawyers, good real estate agents, good dentists, whatever, they can put the plan in place, put the profit activators in place, but they're still practicing whatever the practice. I extrapolated on that, I said, "Oh my gosh, that's exactly what I want to do. I don't want to practice anymore, I just want to bang the drum." That's what I want to talk about.
Dean: It's really interesting because we're living in a time right now where the ability to get stuff done through other people has never been greater. The reason that I wanted to really illustrate what you were doing with the listings program, the way that it all works is that I wanted to point out that you're not really involved in any of that process.
Kenny: That's correct.
Dean: There's nothing magic about it. The interesting thing is postcards are going out and doing their job, the letters are going out and doing their job, and the phone calls act for the cookies that we're offering: the pinpoint price analysis, the [inaudible 00:25:22], the silent market are doing their job to get people to call and say, "We're ready. We'd like to sell our house."
The interesting thing is that I told you about Tony Kalsi who just sent me his chart for two years now and we've got countless people all over who are doing that same thing. There's really no magic to your name having to be on these letters that you're mailing and there's no magic that Tony Kalsi name happened to be on the newsletters that he's mailing. It's really you get to that point where it could be anybody's name on there and you could be - if you took that equation of what has to happen for a real estate transaction to take place, if you break it down, the first part of this is you would go out now and see ... But I get the sense, do you enjoy that part of it, doing the work?
Kenny: Not particularly, no. Once in a while, but not -
Dean: Okay, so the thrill is gone on that part.
Kenny: The thrill is gone, Dean. My thrill comes from when the phone rings after the system works. That still excites me. That excites me is when -
Dean: Okay, so it would be kind of exciting then if you could have somebody that now that you've fielded enough of those calls to know what to do and say when somebody calls you could imagine that somebody else does that. It's really interesting because it's no different than I get a thrill out of hearing you tell me the tale of you going out and getting all these listings and Tony turning a twelve or thirteen to one return. I get a thrill out of that because you're essentially running a system that I created, that I wrote the postcards, I wrote the newsletters, I developed the system and said, "Do this," and you did it and it's working.
Dean: Just like everybody around the country who's doing that, you could do that same of having somebody - you could be the beneficiary of that on your side where you could run that whole system.
Kenny: Yes, I could. I could go out and get more agents, I could send more postcards, I could…
Dean: There's the other thing is that what's the difference, so between you running with your two thousand and Tony doing his seven thousand or seventy-five hundred and all the other people combined you wonder how many postcards are being sent and how much cumulative multiple ROI there is. The only thing that would be any different is choosing another area and adding a zero. Imagine if you just added a zero to it, but we add a zero instead of two thousand you have maybe all of Cape Ann.
Kenny: That's in effect what we've done here is when I went from a thousand to two thousand, and I recently added another area, Marblehead, to three thousand. That in effect is what we've done. I can't help but think that there's another way to scale it.
Dean: Well, talk to me. In what way, what do you mean? It sounds like you're thinking geographically, though. You're thinking, "Okay, I've surrounded myself there," but what if instead of Cape Ann it's Cape Cod or an area where you won't physically be tempted to go, because it doesn't matter that your…
Kenny: That's right. It doesn't matter where it is, Dean.
Dean: Right, that's what I'm saying. You're licensed in the entire state of Massachusetts.
Kenny: That's right, so I'm thinking scale it to some other area where I'm not working, where I'm not tempted to go, and where I don't - I know agents all over Massachusetts, so I'm wondering if I could scale it with by saying to another agent, "I've got this amazing system and I would be happy to put it into play for you." Let's just assume that they say, I can sell them, they buy the idea from me that it works, they know that it works and they're interested. It's from that point forward what happens?
Dean: The reality is, Kenny, that there's not a single realtor in Massachusetts who does not have a working realtor who wants to do business. There's an insatiable appetite for a, "I got a call from these people. They'd like to sell their home. Can you go and meet with them?"
Kenny: Yes, you're correct. Yes.
Dean: There's not a single realtor in Massachusetts who would not like that phone call. Why do you need anybody else's permission or buy in to do it anyway? Why do you need that?
Kenny: I don't, I don't. All right, this is terrific, actually. What you're saying is I should just pick another town anywhere and mail to the people that I want to do business with, the price range that I want to do business with.
Dean: Why wouldn't you pick all the eight hundred thousand.
Kenny: That's correct. Let the phone ring and then call the agents that I know there and say, "Hey, I just a call. Do you want to buy this lead from me? Do you want to refer this to me? Here's a lead for you."
Dean: Or co-list this with me or whatever.
Kenny: Or co-list it or whatever, yeah. That's easy.
Dean: They would love that, right?
Kenny: Yes, that's a great idea.
Dean: It's interesting because ... I don't know if you've been on the last couple of go go agent calls that we've done. There's a new go go agent realtor in - is there an Acton, Massachusetts?
Kenny: There is, yep.
Dean: Okay, and it's a rural area, smaller town?
Dean: She's doing homes with acreage. There's some land around.
Kenny: A lot of farm properties in Acton, yes.
Dean: Okay, yeah. Right, and that's what she's doing. She's doing getting listings now for two months, so she's getting people calling and starting the ball rolling here. We did that same thing. She's already excited to do more properties, like go into the whole town of - there's Acton and then there's another town that's another small ... I don't remember the names of them, but yeah, that's the general idea. Your at the point where it doesn't matter where you are, you could do it from anywhere, and the reality is, too, that your - how much of what happens right now are you involved in? How much of the process of the mailing and all of -
Kenny: It's almost zero, because I hired our own admin two months ago and I've just about, this month will be the first month she'll be doing it on her own and all I'm going to say to her is, "Please do that today."
Dean: Yeah, perfect. Okay, good. You could completely eliminate yourself from it by saying, "Please do this on the first of every month," and then you never have to think about it.
Kenny: That's correct, yep.
Dean: That's just the way we did it with Julie Matthews when we took over doing the before unit and the after unit for Julie and we did it all from my office. That was when I first hired Lillian because Julie needed an assistant and somebody to run all of the getting listings and website and all of those things. We literally ran the whole before unit and after unit from my office for Julie, so she really had no idea what was happening until people called and said, "Can you come over and sell our house?"
Now you've got that opportunity there and for her it doesn't make any difference. For your assistant there, it doesn't make -
Kenny: No, it won't matter to her.
Dean: It won't matter because it'd be one more postcard or another few postcards depending on the areas. I would recommend that you laser target the areas, so you would be doing a specific postcard and a specific landing page but those are all easy to set up.
Kenny: Easily set up, correct.
Dean: Yeah, and then we administered. There's the thing, you've already got the system, it's just a matter of executing it at scale.
Kenny: Scaling it, right. Dean, I want to hang up and go start this.
Dean: That's funny.
Kenny: I hadn't thought of it in those terms, because I'm still thinking as a practitioner.
Dean: I was just going to say you're still thinking you-centric.
Kenny: I have to be there, yeah. I'm so self-centered. I can't help it, I'm sorry.
Dean: If you were, Kenny, to choose another area, if you were to choose another community, what would it be? Have you got some…
Kenny: You know where I went -
Dean: Where would be some high-end homes for you?
Kenny: You know where I just went, my head just ... I was in the moment, it immediately went to Manhattan because I was down there again in February at the Sotheby's headquarters, the mother ship, the and I pulled up on Zillow the number of ten million dollar plus homes, condominiums, that were there, and there were 551.
Dean: How many, sorry?
Kenny: 551 were for sale the day I was there. This was in February. The year before I was there there were over three hundred. That's a huge pool, and right now as we were talking about this I was thinking to myself, "I could just nail those five hundred people." Why not?
Dean: To mail those -
Kenny: I could pick any pool I want. I could pick any zip code, any group, any whatever that I want. It doesn't matter where they are.
Dean: Doesn't that feel free?
Kenny: Yeah. All I have to do is point at it. Go look those up and load that in please, and let's start the machine.
Dean: Yeah, because what would change?
Dean: Part of the thing there - yeah, nothing would change. There's no magic that you -
Kenny: I've got to change the name on the postcard, I've got to change the writing. If I'm a mailing to a specific, let's say a specific building, and there's three hundred units in the building but you want your report on the X, Y, Z building sales, go to the X, Y, Z landing page .com.
Dean: That's exactly right, which is exactly the - I showed you what we've been doing in South Beach. Same thing.
Kenny: Correct, yes.
Dean: The interesting thing if you start to think about some synergies, if you're thinking about Massachusetts, for instance, is there any, what will be the equivalent areas in Massachusetts since you're already licensed and you're already ...
Kenny: Okay, so I start doing Cohasset, Massachusetts, it's south of Boston. It's a waterfront community very similar to where I am now. I don't know how many homes there are that are over $900,000 or over a million, but it's easy to find out and I might have to go to the two adjoining towns, Marshfield and whatever else is down there, to get - because if memory serves you suggest a pool of a thousand to work from.
Dean: The only reason that I say a thousand is because I don't want people to get, that's to start. I don't want people to jump in and be over their head in the beginning. I want people to be able to pick something that they could comfortably mail for six months or more before they get their first -
Kenny: Make sure they don't get discouraged and they can afford it.
Dean: Yes, that's exactly it.
Kenny: They can afford it, yeah.
Dean: There we go. That's what I'm looking for is that -
Kenny: Well, I'm playing with house money now.
Dean: Exactly, and -
Kenny: I'll playing with house money now, so ...
Dean: Once you have the experience of it that you know you're playing with house money and you've had the experience of knowing first hand that it does work in your market. Even though with all the confidence and all the stuff of me telling people that this works and seeing other people have the same results, it's still you don't have the same confidence that you have now after three or four or five years of mailing it and knowing exactly how it works. But imagine if you had added a zero to those now. It's an interesting thing because it's the same. It's the same.
Kenny: What I'm thinking, and I love your idea of adding a zero, but I've taken email mastery, too, and I'm a total specialization freak now about what I'm sending. I'm designing everything, every piece that I put out there the voice is to that one reader, whether it be a printed piece or an email piece. Even my Facebook business posts now are conversational with that one person. We're hitting out of the park because of that stuff, so I'm thinking that I even want to specialize even more with the postcards. I've taken it a step further on one particular town. We found that our annual, we call it our off site, where we go over our numbers in every December. This will be the third one or the fourth one that we've done. We go over the numbers, we look at where it came from. We particularly look at the listings that we didn't get, the appointments we went on and we walked out without a signature, somebody else listed it.
Why? The overriding factor was that they had an existing relationship with an agent that wasn't us. The relationship was they knew the agent. It was a relative, they had done business with them before, whatever. We had been invited to the party because they raised their hand from a postcard or one of our other marketing plans that we had, whatever, and we were invited, but we didn't get the job because they knew somebody else. We didn't matter what we did, what we said; we didn't get the job because of that lack of relationship. I have started, I whittled down that list in one of the towns to only absentee owners.
Dean: Nice. See, there's an interesting approach, yeah.
Kenny: I just started doing it. It's too early to say. I just doing it; however, I just got a listing from it. The list went from a thousand down to three hundred people, and we just got a listing from it. It'll be interesting to see a year from now, but I think that the percentage is going to be much higher. I'm thinking I'm just going to go out, because people are people, and any other town that I try to do this in, like Cohasset, I'm going to look for the absentee owners. That's easy enough to do and those are the people that I'll mail to. What are your thoughts on that?
Dean: I think that's a good idea. We ran into something similar, and this all goes back to profit activator one, selecting your target audience and we want to stack the deck in your favor if you can.
Kenny: That's the low-hanging fruit.
Dean: Yeah. You want to at least not be wasteful. One of the things that we're finding in South Beach is getting to people. If you remember Olga has been doing the oceanfront condos in South Beach. There's twenty-two buildings, about four thousand, thirty-eight hundred units in their total, and the challenge is that so many of them are absentee foreign owned but they are owned through LLCs with an offsite mailing address. What we're testing right now, the next mailing we're testing, is isolating out the people who are owner occupied living in the actual unit with the mailing address matching the unit. Not trying to get to the people who are hidden behind walls of LLCs and the mail goes to their accountant or attorney or something like that. We're trying to get to the right audience.
Any time you can do any kind of pre work, once you recognize a pattern or once you recognize something that helps, that can be an amplifier. It's good. I'm excited to think how if you get out of this idea that it has to be you and you get into the idea of doing something with the express intention of absentee owning it. You're being an absentee owner in a way. You doing the mailing, running the system, and getting somebody involved right at the right time, and again, it's an experiment. Nobody knows how anything works and nobody knows any different until they call you. There's no magic about, because these are people that have a relationship with you, they're calling -
Kenny: No, they're not calling me. They're calling ... Yeah. They want to report just like anybody else.
Dean: They're calling the guy -
Kenny: The guy that sent the postcard.
Dean: - that's sending them information every single month. That's the guy they're interested in, and doesn't matter who you are, right?
Kenny: No, it does not. They just know that they like the information that they've been getting and they're ready, and they feel obligated, which is wonderful because. You must've spent so much time doing this and putting this together and sending this to me and oh my god, I can't believe it. I can just see them every month.
Dean: Yeah, I say that and people often ask me, "Are you sure? Can't we just email them? Can't we just send them an email newsletter?"
Kenny: No, don't fix it.
Dean: Exactly. Don't try and fix it.
Kenny: Don't fix it.
Dean: The difference is that you've got the experience now of having people call you with a file of information. There's visible, tangible evidence that you have been going out of your way to act as their advocate. You've been giving them information that they find valuable and doing it every month.
Kenny: I'm invested in them.
Dean: Yes. That goes a long way, that really does. Now, you could do that same thing it's just a matter of logistics, of handling the part of it. Joe Polish and I just recorded an I Love Marketing episode with our friend Ari Meisel and Nick Sonnenberg, but Ari wrote a book called "Less Doing" and they have now turned that into a service where they provide you with an infinitely scalable workforce, execution virtually. We talked about this idea that now it really is at the point where execution is becoming commoditized. Execution is easy, the easy part of getting stuff done now. What you've got, I was sharing with Ari that I'd look at the getting listings system, I'd look at that as something that I call a scale-ready algorithm.
What I mean by that is that that's something that I've figured out the recipe, the steps, the process, to go from choosing a group of homes to getting somebody to call you and say, "Hey, we're ready to sell our house." I've outlined, documented, a proven process to do that: that's scale-ready algorithm. For most businesses who have an opportunity there, they have to focus on that part of it first, just figuring out what's the -
Kenny: The algorithm.
Dean: - the scale-ready algorithm, but a lot of times people want to start with the scaling. They want to scale too soon, they want to go big and they want to -
Kenny: Yeah, they haven't figured out the process, the recipe yet.
Dean: - they want to expand, they want to figure out on a grander scale than is necessary. I look at things like there's no - I have this whole philosophy of looking at things and I don't want to spend $10,000 to answer a question that I could get the answer for $1,000. I'd rather invest the minimum to know. That's why when putting together new postcard campaigns I do test groups of a thousand instead of five or ten thousand, even though the universe that we could potentially mail might be hundreds of thousands or millions. I know in a thousand postcards whether something is a home run or whether it's a loser. You can't hide either one of those. If it's a loser, it's not going to get any better by mailing ten thousand of them -
Kenny: Nine hundred more or whatever, yeah.
Dean: - instead of a thousand. Right, exactly.
Kenny: Makes sense.
Dean: That's the cool thing that I think everybody will get from listening to this episode is hearing the what actually happens when you have that scale-ready algorithm.
Kenny: One algorithm is key.
Dean: When I first started getting listings I did it first here in Winter Haven. That was the first place. We cracked the code here and only when we figured out how it actually, that it works, then I was able to package that up and that scale-ready algorithm we've got thousands of people all over that use that same algorithm.
Kenny: You've applied it to different businesses, too.
Dean: I'm excited that now you've got this new vision of taking that and running with it.
Kenny: Yeah. My head is ticking right now with different focused groups. It doesn't have to be a town and a price range, it could be car collectors. If I could narrow down a list of people in Massachusetts that have, say, four or more cars that they own I could send them -
Dean: Talk to me about that.
Kenny: If you're looking for the latest report on real estate available in your area that could house your automobiles ... Horse properties.
Dean: I was just going to say horse properties -
Kenny: It could work for -
Dean: Look at those things. Horse properties, acreage, waterfront properties.
Kenny: Do you need a deep water dock?
Dean: Deep water docks, all of those things that are ... The interesting thing is when you can take things that are not easily algorithmed in terms of that they're not readily available otherwise unless somebody sets up the algorithm for them. It's easy to get all the information on homes that have four-car garages or more, or stores four to six cars or horse properties. I think in Florida here of orange groves or oceanfront condos or golf course homes or retirement communities or active adult communities. All of those things are all noble, and when you can select that target market the other benefit of it is that you get the horoscope effect where people are always more attracted to the things that are immediately applicable to them.
Kenny: Did you call it the horoscope effect?
Dean: I call it the horoscope effect because when you look at a list of horoscopes where do your eyes automatically go?
Kenny: To mine, Virgo.
Dean: Mine goes to Taurus because I'm a Taurus and that's what I know.
Kenny: Okay, I get it.
Dean: That's what I'm saying when - going broad, horoscopes wouldn't have the same impact if it was the same for everybody.
Kenny: I never read Taurus.
Dean: Exactly, why would you? Just like the person who owns a horse farm is never going to care about the condo property.
Kenny: That's right.
Dean: That's why when you narrow that down that's why it's so important in profit activator one.
Kenny: It's compelling.
Dean: As the commercial photographer that just shoots bottles and then has a sister site called WeShootCans.com, which is so much better than KennysCommericalPhotography.com, we do it all, big or small. We can do your product, we can do your package, we can do catalogs, we can do all this laundry list of things. People are attracted to the things that are specifically applicable to them.
Kenny: We also want it easy, Dean. I eat out a couple of times a week. I like specials because I'm special, why wouldn't I want a special? I love it when I go into a restaurant and they have three or four specials. If they don't have a special I say to myself, "Geez, maybe I'm not special enough." They'll have a couple of specials, and my favorite restaurant would have two or three specials and they would be out of all but one. Then I don't have to make a decision. I just sit down, "I'm hungry, what's the special?" They tell me and I say, "I'll have that." I love that.
Dean: Kenny, what's going to be your action plan here?
Kenny: I am going to pull a list of I think I'm going to do golf course communities. There's a ton of them, there's a ton of them. My primary's a golfer. He'll get into it, and I think that's what we're going to do. We're going to start mailing golf course holes. We've just done a couple of transactions, they were both over a million dollars so it fits price wise with our numbers, and I think we're going to offer a report on golf course homes.
Dean: I think that's perfect. If you can also go down to the community level on that, like it's for you there's something there, like you're going out to for buyers that's a great thing because we always want to look at how…
Kenny: Right, but that would be the buy side, correct.
Dean: The buy side would be the golf course house prices -
Dean: The guide to golf course prices.
Kenny: The guide to golf course prices will be the community itself.
Dean: Yeah. If I live in Cypresswood I don't care what the prices are in Oakwood because I don't live in Oakwood, I live in Cypresswood. But if I'm considering buying a golf course property, I want to know that while I could choose Cypresswood or I could choose Oakwood or I could choose Lake Region, whatever, I want to have the options.
Kenny: That's right.
Dean: Are there golf course communities on Cape Ann? Are there more than one there?
Kenny: They're not actually on Cape Ann but in what we call the North Shore of Boston there are several. I can think of five or six immediately and those five or six will have two thousand homes, I'm taking a stab. It's a terrific idea one, thank you, and two, it's a great fish bowl, it's a great targeted market. I guarantee you nobody's doing it. You're not going to put this on the Internet or anything, right? This is just between you and I, this call?
Dean: Just you and I having this conversation, yeah.
Kenny: It's private. It's on the Internet, nobody else will know it.
Dean: That's so funny. Nobody will listen to this. Nobody listens to podcasts Kenny, you know that.
Kenny: No, no, no. Did you hear Tim Ferriss recently? They interviewed him out at the Googleplex.
Dean: I'm not sure that I heard that one. What was he talking about?
Kenny: It was very recent, but it was very good. He was talking about his what turns him on. He was talking about why he started podcasting. He wanted to scratch an itch.
Dean: Podcasting, I'm really such a fan of podcasting, and it's becoming so much more popular now. There's more and more -
Kenny: And easy.
Kenny: Easy to get.
Dean: Yeah, and that's where I think it's really going to be a situation where the content is going to really matter and make a difference.
Kenny: Yeah, it'll have to get better or nobody will listen to it.
Dean: Right, but they might listen once because of the artwork or the name of it or something, but to build that longevity it's got to add value and there's nothing like a podcast, as you were talking about, as a profit activator three tool. That's the thing is that people often go into starting a podcast thinking that it's going to be a lead generator for them, which it really isn't. That's not the highest value for a podcast. It's really a profit activator three thing where you're demonstrating keeping in touch with people. I've got a few of the people that I'm going to be talking with on More Cheese, Less Whiskers, a lot of the strategy that we're going to talk about is in incorporating a podcast into their mix.
Kenny: I'm looking forward to hearing that.
Dean: Kenny, you feel like -
Kenny: Thank you, Dean.
Dean: we hatched an evil scheme for you today?
Kenny: I definitely did. I definitely do feel like, I'm feeling very evil right now and it's all due to you. I appreciate it, thank you.
Dean: I had fun. That's great. I really enjoyed it.
Kenny: Me too, man.
Dean: Thanks for playing along.
Kenny: All right, talk to you later.
Dean: There we have it. Another episode complete. If you'd like to keep the conversation going you can go to MoreCheeseLessWhiskers.com, download a copy of the More Cheese, Less Whiskers book, and if you'd like to be a guest on the show you can click on be a guest and we'll be able to hatch some evil schemes for your business. I'm really excited to get as many different types of businesses as we can and all different sizes of businesses. You'll see coming up here we've got some businesses that are very big businesses that have lots of employees that are working with lots of different types of industries, and I'd love to get some startups, some people who are just getting started and seeing how we can use the eight profit activators to deploy a system that can get your business up and going and growing as fast as we can.
If you'd like to get more depth on how the eight profit activators all work together, you can go to breakthroughDNA.com and you can watch, there's a video that explains - it's a one-hour video. It's a presentation from our I Love Marketing conference that Joe Polish and I did in Phoenix. You can see, get a great overview of how all the eight profit activators work together. You can download a copy of the Breakthrough DNA book, and that will be sent by email to you right there, so you can really get a depth of understanding of all the things that we talk about on these episodes.
If you'd like to get together in person, I do the Breakthrough Blueprint live events where we have a small group of people. We have ten or twelve people in a board room for three days just hatching evil schemes and talking about applying the eight profit activators. I do those events in Florida, in Toronto, in London, in Sydney, Australia, going to be leaving in a couple of weeks to come to Sydney. If you'd like to come to a live event where we can hatch evil schemes for your business over a three-day board room style event, you'll get the opportunity by going to breakthroughDNA.com. I put all of the details of the upcoming dates and I would love to see you together and spend some time working on applying the eight profit activators to your business.
There you go. That was a great episode this week. I will look forward to talking to you next time.