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First Person

Stacie Staub on how to connect with your sphere of influence

"I’m absolutely a relationship marketer at heart," said Stacie Staub about the importance of connecting with your sphere of influence.

Here are a few highlights:

  • How community events can draw people to her brokerage.
  • Why you need something other than real estate to stay in touch.
  • Why scalable systems are the key to business growth.
“I love all things bright and shiny, but I stuck with the basics and it has really paid off.” Stacie Staub, West + Main

Rather read it? Check out the transcript here:

Mike Schneider: Welcome back to another episode of First Person and I'm honored to have Stacie Staub here, the Founder and Owner of West + Main.

Stacie Staub: Thank you.

Mike Schneider: Thanks for being on.

Stacie Staub: Thank you so much.

Mike Schneider: Well as always we start with a fun, quirky, little lightning round, see how many of these you can get in 60 seconds.

Stacie Staub: All right.

Mike Schneider:: You're first.

Stacie Staub: Okay.

Mike Schneider: What was your first job?

Stacie Staub: Washing dishes in a pizza parlor.

Mike Schneider: First car?

Stacie Staub: Nissan 200 SX.

Mike Schneider: Well done, SX in there too.

Stacie Staub: I wrecked it four days after I got it.

Mike Schneider: I want to hear more. First listing.

Stacie Staub: Short sale condo. It took me six days to get it under contract and two years to get it closed.

Mike Schneider:: But it sold.

Stacie Staub: It eventually closed.

Mike Schneider: First pet.

Stacie Staub: Dog.

Mike Schneider: First thing you say when you meet someone?

Stacie Staub: What's up.

Mike Schneider: What's up? Someone new?

Stacie Staub: Yes.

Mike Schneider: That's great. First thing you do when you wake up?

Stacie Staub: Facebook.

Mike Schneider: First album or record?

Stacie Staub: Beach Boys.

Mike Schneider: First computer?

Stacie Staub: Commodore 64.

Mike Schneider: First home you bought?

Stacie Staub: Little brick ranch in Arvada Colorado.

Mike Schneider: First phone number?

Stacie Staub: 420-8494.

Mike Schneider: Oh first website domain name?

Stacie Staub:

Mike Schneider: First flight and where did you go?

Stacie Staub: I went to London, all by myself to see my secret boyfriend.

Mike Schneider: Oh my goodness, these are great stories. Now people are going to be calling you up asking you, tell me the story. Well that's all we got in 60 seconds. That was really good.

Mike Schneider: That's amazing. I'm telling you there are more stories there than I think I've heard at any of these.

Stacie Staub: I didn't even peek at your phone.

Mike Schneider: So how did you get into real estate?

Stacie Staub: I started out working for a software company as their marketing director, and their main clients were large independent real estate companies. So they had clients, you know, in all markets across the United States, and they started complaining, this is shocking, that tech developers, tech people don't understand the mind of realtors.

Mike Schneider: What?

Stacie Staub: Like that is, I know, so I said I'll go get my real estate license. So then we can say we have a realtor on staff, and I thought, I'll never do anything with it. And then I was like we actually could buy another house. So I started looking at houses, and then had a couple friends want me to show them houses and then I was like, "I like this so much better than sitting in an office all the time." So that was my fast entry.

Mike Schneider: Wow, so from tech into real estate.

Stacie Staub: Yeah, but I actually came to Inman before I started selling real estate because I was in real estate tech.

Mike Schneider: You were on the tech side. Wow, and now you have your own brokerage.

Stacie Staub: I do.

Mike Schneider: So how did you get there? What was that like?

Stacie Staub: I worked at a couple different brokerages, one was very small. It actually closed when I left, sorry. Sorry not sorry, is that what the kids say now? And then I worked at the next brokerage for 10 years. I've sold full time for about five. Became a top producer, decided I hated it, and so I asked them if they could either create me a full time position, or I told them I was going to go work at Zillow. So they created a position for me.

Mike Schneider: Slam down the cards, I'm going to Zillow.

Stacie Staub: So they created a position for me. Yeah, I was like I'll go work somewhere else, you know, I just need to not sell real estate for a minute. So I was very grateful that I got to stay there and helped build that brokerage up, especially their marketing program. And then a couple of years ago almost now, I decided I need to take the leap, so …

Mike Schneider: Great.

Stacie Staub:Yup, built the brand from scratch. Grew a lot more quickly than we thought we would. If I looked back at my business plan from a year and a half ago, my reach goal, my stretch goal, was 25 agents, and we have 70.

Mike Schneider: Wow, congratulations.

Stacie Staub:Thank you.

Mike Schneider: So you have the technology, you have the marketing, you have the actual selling experience. We really focus on where relationships fit in all that. I've very curious, since you have all those pieces, tell us a little bit about relationships in real estate and how that drives the industry.

Stacie Staub:I am absolutely a relationship marketer at heart. We do a lot of community events. We do a lot of Ninja Training. So I've been through the Ninja Selling Programs several times. It's at the core of my real estate training, and it's how I coach and hold my agents accountable. And that's all about sphere building or training your sphere.

Mike Schneider: So for those that don't know, can you give us a couple of the key tenses. Like you said community events, but what are the other things you're doing.

Stacie Staub:So we do, we like to bring the community into our spaces. So with intention, we leased probably before are ready, two huge storefront spaces on either side of Denver. One of them is set up as an art gallery, so we bring in a different artist every month. Throw them a big First Friday event. Don't charge them when we sell their art and all of our agents invite their friends, and it's a good time. The other things we do, we did a big huge grand opening day event for Coors Field, it was a blizzard, and we still had 300 people there.

Mike Schneider: But that's a catalytic event where people can invite all their friends.

Stacie Staub:Oh totally, and that's always the intention is giving our agents something to talk about besides real estate but also letting them throw a party without having to throw the party, like we do that.

Mike Schneider: Sure, that's great, that's awesome. What's hard about that? One of the things that we're always interested in is you know, when you talk about the relationship, that's a long term investment in play. When you have hundreds of past clients and thousands of people you know, how do you handle that? What's hard about that side of it?

Stacie Staub: I think it's all about setting up scalable systems, right? We were really lucky at West + Main because we got to start from the ground up and choose platforms that really believed that agents would not only understand but actually use. So that was, there were some hard decisions made because I love bright and shiny, I love all the new stuff and I really stuck to the basics and its worked out really well. So I have systems for them, we use slack to communicate. So I'll Slack them and say, "You need to send out this invite today, here's a graphic, you can text this to all your friends." Things like that.

Mike Schneider: That's great, so keep it simple.

Stacie Staub: Yeah. Yes, yes.

Mike Schneider: I'm curious, if you have, we call these little sparks, you have someone, like maybe have them come to any of the events, but you sold them a house three or four years ago, how do you rekindle that relationship?

Stacie Staub: That's the challenge, right?

Mike Schneider: Yes, that is the challenge, we're curious on the how to's.

Stacie Staub: Yeah, so what I do tell my agents is that every single person should be set up on a property search. So when onboard them, and they learn our system, their homework is to put every single person that they know into our database and set them up on a property search. So that's like a natural drip. We also have regular email newsletters that we create for them. We have lots of cards and stickers and phone wallets and notebooks and onesies and hats, and all kinds of stuff in the office. Ready for them to pick up to try and surprise and delight their clients and their past relationships to try and get the flames going again.

Mike Schneider: Got it. So bring something.

Stacie Staub: Yeah, and it's always the challenge. So sometimes I put out a weekly challenge to the agents, sometimes that's add 20 new names to the database. Sometimes that's reconnect with 20 old names in your database.

Mike Schneider: Oh I love that. I love that, that's a simple like here's a twig challenge. Set yourself a goal.

Stacie Staub: Yeah, and then they get a credit to the West + Main Store. It's like this whole thing. It's like this whole thing, they get to buy swag. Yeah.

Mike Schneider: Very cool. Well, since you now have lots of agents, and you coach them. I'd love to hear one or two just pro tips on anything regarding relationships.

Stacie Staub: I think, one of my favorites and I'm going to totally steal this from Larry Kendall who created the Ninja Selling Program, he calls it, Call Roulette, I tend to use text instead, but I swipe through my phone, in my contacts, and hit stop, and I have to text whoever I land on. So sometimes it's challenging. If it's been a couple years they're way down the list. And I never delete any text from my phone for this reason.

Mike Schneider: Sure, because then you can see all the history.

Stacie Staub: Well and then you can also, and you hit stop and you remember like, oh you know what, I never followed up with them on that, you know, or maybe we had a conversation that came to a grinding halt because I was texting and not driving, but you know how that goes. So that's one of my favorite things to teach our agents to do as well.

Mike Schneider: That's a game.

Stacie Staub: That's a game. Yeah. It's a huge challenge too because what if you land on your dentist, you know, I'm like I am texting my dentist.

Mike Schneider: Yeah, why not.

Stacie Staub: Please don't ask me to make an appointment but I'm texting him, it's Text Roulette, that's the rule.

Mike Schneider: Well that's really helpful. Thank you Stacie for being on, for sharing some of your wisdom.

Stacie Staub: Thank you for having me.