Real Estate Webmasters doing better than ever!

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I had another call today (I've had a few since we started running promo's in July or whenever we started) where the customer was concerned about the financial well being of Real Estate Webmasters. Basically the assumption some have made (which I totally understand) is that if we are giving away such good deals or running so many promo's we must be in some kind of financial trouble. Nothing could be further from the truth.

REW's best quarter in history

When I ran my "too busy to sell hours" promotion in July I did so because I honestly and truly was concerned that I would not be able to keep up with my usual sales volume due to my commitments in putting on the REW Conference in September (oh yeah, and there was the slight detail of my getting married on August 15th) – I had never done anything like this before so the result was extremely unexpected (and appreciated). What happened was that we sold something like 1600 hours of billable labor (I can't remember the exact number) in less than a week (and I was only trying to sell 1200) – the end result (because my other sales staff were still working of course) was that we shattered all previous sales records at Real Estate Webmasters for a given month (by over $50,000 I think). Needless to say, I didn't mind this at all – although it did mean lots of overtime and a very busy billing / HR department. The end result was that I learned that even though we were billing less per hour, with the time we saved in terms of processing and sales etc, we actually managed to be more profitable – so I figured, "Heck, if that worked so well, why not run more of these?"

The next major promo I ran was for $2000 USD off the setup of CORE IDX – people were like "WHAT? You must be going under...". Nah – let me share some insight into my thought process (I was right btw). First and foremost it is true that in selling built-in CORE IDX's at $500 a pop we lose money, but what I was thinking / planning on is that we would land a ton of "new" customers (that didn't have REW sites / hosting accounts, etc, which we do profit on) so it was a pretty good experiment to see if, with the right motivation, we could dramatically increase our customer base. Once again, it worked (and we sold out plus a lot more than we meant to). I also counted on (and this happened as well) customers taking those savings and investing in upgrades (at full price) thus making the IDX a very effective loss leader.. and how many of you reading this, who bought during the IDX promo, spent a bunch of $ on extras? Virtually all of you – pretty smart, huh?

So I was 2 for 2 with amazing sales (and record months) with promo's - I should keep this up! I am working less (on the sales end) which was buying me more time to work on the technology side (where I am happiest, and also where I can build you all new and exciting technology like the calendar functionality upgrade I am currently working on for CMS 2.0). So I ran the 25% bonus on your order promotion - and it flopped! The concept was good (and the justification was great – I mean shoot, we were used to getting par on the dollar, and all of a sudden we are gettting $1.20 per dollar). Even with the discount to US customers, we are stilling making the same coin - seems logical right? Wrong! For some reason the promo didn't take off and I basically just let it fizzle out because it wasn't generating any more orders than our normal course of business and I am not running promos just to be a nice guy (they need to be of mutual benefit - better bottom line for us, better deal for the customers). After this one I said to myself, "Okay, too many promo's – obviously if I run them too often, they don't have the same impact (and I need to switch them up)." Thus I have decided to run less promo's and only use them when there is something I really want to push (such as the new LEC program) OR when I need some time away from the sales floor to work on technology.

Which leads me to our last promotion of the year (sorry, there won't be any more this year I don't think, unless you guys don't mind waiting until spring for your projects). I REALLY want to push hard for our LEC program (it's one of those win-win products for us and our customers) so I ran the promo to push (first and foremost) the LEC's (I needed to get some out there as examples for my sales team to use in their pitches) and the other items I tossed in because we are still kicking butt with the dollar and I figured it would be a nice thank you for all of our customers who have been so good to us all year long. (Thank you again btw.)

The end result (again a complete success) was that I was able to process 25 new orders of just the LEC 2.0 alone (never mind the rest of the items on the promo, and of course lots of these folks ordered other non promo upgrades at full price) and we are basically completely sold out (our custom department was already booked through February pretty much even before the promo, and now our products department is sold out for the entire month of December and have been before the month even started).

The best part! (for me at least) is that I will be fielding virtually no new leads or processing sales requests this month (with the exception of key accounts but even with these, I have even pulled another of my sales team into my office just to help out (thanks Ryland, you are doing a bang up job). This means that I am free to work on your new technology and some new initiatives at REW for 2009. For those of you who might be curious – here's what I'm doing:

  • LEC Program - once again, probably the most win-win website package we have ever offered (nice profit margin for us, immense cost savings to our customers even at full price). I am going to be working on the marketing materials and several add-ons for our current LEC's as well as completing both LEC 3 and 4 (both in the works already).
  • REWards program - the REW referral program. It has existed in secret (we have like 5 resellers) for quite some time but I am finally going to get around to finalizing the documentation and processes so that we can offer it publicly.
  • REWIDX (iFrames) - although built-in search engine friendly IDX is absolutely the best investment you can make - it is expensive. Not every Realtor can afford it AND we have pretty much already cornered that market - so we are going to take a run at a low cost iframe alternative (to be tested in MRIS / CRRA) - to be launched January '09 if I have anything to say about it.
  • CMS 2.0 Calendar / reminder system - everyone wants it, and I have been working on it slowly forever! I WILL be getting this into a beta this month dammit! Seriously though, it should be ready for purchase soon.
  • SEO / Key account attention - I am still the team lead of the SEO department, and I am looking forward to giving some extra love to my (full service) SEO customers and some of my key accounts as well (let's make sure we hit up 2009 guns blazing).

There's more on my December wish list – but my fingers are tired, and I have to head into the dev area to get back to work on this stuff.

For those of you that were worried about us (our financial situation), please don't be, we are more than just "fine" financially, we are having the best end of the year that we have ever had and ecstatic that we were able to achieve this while at the same time offering some nice discounts to our loyal customers.

Have a happy holiday and a great new year - I am looking forward to working with you all in 2009.

Comments

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SCP

Glad to hear the company is doing well. Keep up the great promotions!!!

I like the 2009 sneak peek. The CMS 2.0 Calendar is going to be a hit!!

mikepannell

V, Please Use me as a TEst Dumby. I will pay for it LOL DANG

FindCRE

That's awesome, Morgan!!!

As with all business, the cream always rises to the top. You guys are all great and we all know that REW will continue to grow and prosper, just as your clients will :)

To the most properous year to-date in 09!

BTW we need that CMS 2.0 with all the upgrades asap.

Dennis Pease

Keep me informed on the REWards program, we talked about it bit I need some more details. It might pay for an LEC2 for me. ;)

mikepannell

Richard you need to keep up. LOL Richard good job on the 87 sales this year. my goal is 300 next year. We only did 60 this year. How your next year is as goood as we think next will be.

Morgan Carey

Ummm I know that you are trying to pay that other poster a compliment, but I am not sure if it is "ok" or ethical to share someone else's private (as in non netris member) sales numbers with the public (I might be wrong here) - either way, cats out - congrats to both of you! Great job

Mark Wallington

Keep up the good work congrats to all the REW team.

FindCRE

Well, I guess he's counting the buyers side only, not listings nor commercial transactions. I would think that my transactions should be private, but whatever :)

Joshua Keen

That's great news. I'm really looking forward to the REWawards and SEO / Key Account attention. I know 2009 is going to be a great year for REW and all of here that love to buy up your promotions :)

mikepannell

Sorry about that, Yeah i was only talking about buyer side. Not sure that was even the right number but it was close.

thataway61

Good work! I know all the LEC2 customers I personally know are tickled! My items were put in place today. Your team must be knocking those orders out. It was amazing all the blog entry comment updates that came in the e-mail during thebig sale. KaChing!

Paul Caparas

That is great news! I also every now and then get a call or email checking how I am doing selling Real Estate and whats crazy is this has been my best year! One of the main reasons is because of REW.

Portland Real Estate

Glad to hear of your continued success.We are growing too and REW's rocking websites are a big part of that.

mikepannell

what is 2.5? Something else i have to upgrade to? lol

Adam Robinson Sarasota

Morgan,

I have thought you are a marketing genius and had these promos all planned out. I never would have invested in a site with REW if it were not for the first special. I have taken advantage of each promotion to build a sitie that is almost custom, with all the bells & whistles. Heck, I wouldn't have even known about half of the extras, if it weren't for the specials.

It has taken me a while to get used to REW & the benefits of using the forums . I am really excited that my site is going iive in the next couple of days. I am now a strong believer and look forward to the REWards program. I have already been referring REW to my friends.

I am saving money for the next specials on LEC sites and can't wait to see LEC 3 & 4.

I only have one big request -- Please, don't sell the company. (Especially not to Dominion)

One last question, do you have a date for the next REW conference? I like to get all my conferences on my calendar at the begining of the year.

Happy Holidays to everyone at REW.

Adam

Mike Trinchitella

I am REALLY hoping for another 50% special (LEC) as I want to order 1-2 if that special is run again!
Also to expand on the genius of REW... I think beyond what the obvious the one thing that to this day I find is the smartest thing you guys do in terms of creating more business is..... the open work order forum! I mean I "browse that isle" like a kid in a candy store when i see new requests from agents that I also want. I am the ME-2 of REW :)
BTW did I mention I am waiting for another LEC promo!!! :)

Morgan Carey

If you want to order 2 LEC 2.0's I will give them to you at the promo rate (because I can't sell any more in your market anyways so why the heck not right :-) - But only if you order 2 (And they were't 50% off, LEC 2.0 is normally $10,000 it was on for $6000 on the promo -

Same goes for anyone else btw, if you want to order 2 or more LEC 2.0 for the same market area I'll hook you up with the previous promo rate.

Mike Trinchitella

ahhh that is right, can't have more than 1 LEC in my area...I like that.... hmmm...I only have 1 site in mind right now and trying very hard to snag an expiring domain that I want for it, trying to get this url for years. As I said 1 is a definite 2 is the maybe right now.

Morgan Carey

Well let's see - 1 LEC 2.0 is definite (That's 10k) - 2 LEC's is 12k? (cmon Mike - you can do it! muahahahhaha)

PS if 1 is a definite, you might want to get your order in, because we do have interest from your area (he said you knew each other he ALSO said you told him your cousin did your site << I didn't know we were related hehe.

Mike Trinchitella

Um he's the one who stole my content and who I am going to be pursuing certain actions.... was hoping you do not deal with him/someone like him to be honest with you. Especially him and for what he has done.

Morgan Carey

Ermm - guy is from the same office, but I checked the name on URL that you sent me, and they had a different name (Does he go by an alias?) I thought it was weird that I got an inquiry right after you posted that.

Morgan Carey

Also just FYI this guy made it sound like you were friends.

Mike Trinchitella

Hmm sounds fishy..no one in my office would every copy me so you may be speaking about someone else but. I will PM you in a minute to confirm that.

Carolyn Gjerde-Tu

Mike you would so rock with 2LECs and a custom site.

I still think we as real estate sales people can learn a lot from watching you sell Morgan. lol

Mike Trinchitella

I have 3 templates and a custom site and plan on an LEC this year "maybe" 2 and maybe some upgrades to templates to the new template design. I am bringing on 2 buyers agents in the next month so I plan to allocate funds from their production for yet more web sites, 1 new custome or LEC site a year would be cool.

Morgan Carey

Thanks for the kind words Carolyn, I think Mike is already sold on the benefits of REW however as he has had a custom site with custom IDX for like a year now - It's no LEC 2.0 but it seems to be doing quite well if I do say so myself :)

Brian Talley

Hi Morgan. Just a quick note that after 16 month short months, which is when REW started building my website, www.regentpg.com has achieved a Google rank of 5. To everyone at Real Estate Webmasters, thank you for the role you have played in helping me build a great website!

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