The Sincere Introvert: Sincerity and Vulnerability in the Age of Personal Branding

As host of the PI Window on Business Show, I have had the opportunity to speak with The Twittering Granny, Canada’s Trade Minister, Maine’s gubernatorial candidate Matt Jacobson, bestselling authors too numerous to list and industry thought leaders.

Suffice to say each one provided invaluable knowledge, insight and great entertainment for all of us. However, and even with this great constellation of guests, in a world in which personal branding is the key element of building one’s profile and establishing an enduring presence, Jennifer Allan caught my attention!

Perhaps it was the fact that she is an admitted introvert? Or maybe it was the simple yet powerful expression of her belief that “the secret of success for real estate agents (Jennifer is a former top producing real estate broker), and other entrepreneurs is not in aggressive marketing techniques or hard-core sales pitches, but rather in being competent in one’s craft.” A quiet competency if you will that establishes confidence in those with whom she seeks to connect and serve.

A published author, a speaker and a trainer, Jennifer has written five books about the business of selling real estate, including her flagship book: Sell with Soul: Creating an Extraordinary Career in Real Estate without Losing Your Friends, Your Principles or Your Self-Respect.

Jennifer also has a new book that is scheduled for release in early 2010 entitled “If You’re Not Having Fun Selling Real Estate, You’re Not Doing it Right!”

In the context of the old saying “I can’t hear what you are saying because your actions are speaking too loud,” I cannot help but think that this champion of the “quiet” brand is perhaps on to something in what is the fast-paced world of social media and social networking.

I am of course pleased to be joined by Jennifer Allan on today’s show to talk about her version of building an effective personal brand.

Jennifer Allan, Sell With Soul

About Jennifer:

Jennifer Allan is a top producing real estate broker, a published author, a speaker and a trainer.

She has written five books about the business of selling real estate, including her flagship book: Sell with Soul: Creating an Extraordinary Career in Real Estate without Losing Your Friends, Your Principles or Your Self-Respect. Her book shows new agents how to jumpstart their career so that they can experience success before they become discouraged and risk being just another real estate statistic.

Jennifer began her writing career after ten years of selling real estate successfully in Denver, Colorado. She was dismayed at the low level of professionalism she frequently encountered in the real estate industry and, with her “soulful” message, hopes to encourage the real estate community to self-correct the negative stereotypes of the profession.

Jennifer’s message to agents is that they should strive to be competent real estate advisors, rather than competent real estate prospectors. Her books are written with this philosophy in mind. The title – Sell with Soul – is really just a catchy phrase for following the Golden Rule in the day-to-day practice of real estate. Treating clients and prospects respectfully, as the salesperson him or herself would like to be treated. Being competent, reliable and fair, and motivated by a true desire to earn a commission, not just show up at closing with hand outstretched.

During her real estate career, Jennifer worked at several brokerage firms and eventually opened her own company, New Precedent Real Estate, in 2004. From 1999 through 2002, she was the top producer in her office, and a member of the RE/MAX Platinum Club, which is awarded to the company’s highest producers. In her first year of selling real estate, she was the second highest producing rookie agent out of approximately 75 other new licensees.

She is a regular columnist at Realty Times and RIS Media, and one of the industry’s most popular bloggers.


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Interested in hiring Jennifer to speak to your group, association or company? Here are a few excerpts from her recent live standing-room-only presentation entitled: Selling to Your Sphere of Influence: No Sales Pitch Required!

Most Recent Book:

Even in so-called boom markets, rookie real estate agents almost always find their new careers to be harder than anticipated, but today, even experienced agents are failing in record numbers. Statistics quote figures ranging from 70% to 95% dropout rate for first year agents and it s common knowledge in the industry that only a small percentage of the licensed agents are making enough money to live on.

Why is the failure rate so high? Is it a matter of unrealistic expectations? Maybe. A lack of enthusiasm? Probably. A lack of support and training? Definitely.

What agents need is good solid training on how to competently sell real estate and Jennifer Allan s book Sell with Soul offers just that. The second edition of Sell with Soul has been updated to reflect the realities of today s more challenging real estate marketplace. The book takes on the tough issues of survival in a slowing housing market and provides a blueprint for success to help new agents navigate the critical first year and beyond. Sell with Soul comes complete with checklists to help agents keep on top of listings and contracts, step-by-step guidelines for building a thriving real estate practice as well as anecdotal examples of real world real estate dilemmas and solutions to them.

Yet the book is so much more than a rookie survival guide. The author discusses such touchy subjects as commission discounting (she s all for it), buyer agency (don t push it), prospecting at open houses (do so with caution) and generating bidding wars (it s your duty). Practical advice is offered on everything from building a loyal client base to marketing listings to negotiating inspections and even handling pricing objections.

Sell with Soul focuses on helping new agents become competent at their craft, so they can be confident with their prospects and clients. This confidence enables them to stay true to themselves because they will have no need for the Old School prospecting strategies and aggressive closing techniques that force many new agents out of their comfort zone.

Readers consistently praise the readability of Sell with Soul, commenting that it reads almost like a novel instead of just another business self-help book. The book is written in a casual voice, with a relaxed style that is noticeably different from the more authoritative voices of the competition.

Remember to use the On-Demand Player below to access the live December 15th broadcast at 12:30 PM EST.

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