The media buzzed. Eager buyers waited in line. They stalked storefronts. Camped out. The end result: 10 million iPhone 6s sold in the first week—Making the latest innovation from Apple the fastest-selling smartphone of all-time. Period!
Now here is my question for you.
Knowing what you know about [most] real estate agents, how many agents do you think heard this news and immediately asked, “What can I learn from Apple’s latest success, and how can it be applied to my client’s home sale?”—to a) get more buyers lined up, eager to buy, and b) to not care about the price, because let’s face it. There are many “cheaper” smartphones on the market. Yet, people want the iPhone, not its competitor.
You never hear about anybody standing in line for Samsung’s latest release. Or Nokia. Are they still around? How about Motorola? Nope! The news only makes a spectacle of Apple. In regards to these other companies. They don’t hover or speculate on rumors. You could argue, these companies and their products aren’t even a blip on their radar—the proof of this fact is how little you hear about them in the news.
So what is Apple doing so different?
This is the kind of question that smart entrepreneurs ask. Because if I’ve learned one thing about success in business, rarely is lasting success a fluke. Sure, there was the pet rock. A one-hit, 30-second wonder! But decade after decade, dominating success, that is no accident. Somehow, someway, it was engineered. It was planned. And, of course, it has been maintained—which may be the most difficult part, given the challenge of continually needing to “wow” consumers, readers, viewers, listeners, patients, customers, and clients.
Regardless of the business, “one upping” your last innovation is no easy feat. So those companies that are successful at it, deserve great study. This is how, bluntly, I’ve been able to deliver superior results for my clients over the years. I am always studying. Always learning.
3 Keys to Apple’s Record-Breaking Success:
First: Be strategic.
Apple doesn’t just manufacture a product, throw a box around it, rush it to store shelves, and expect it to sell. That is what all of Apple’s competitors do. But Apple does not. It’s starts with the design—from the perspective of the consumer. In other words, “Focus on the Phone, not the product.”
Rarely did you hear Steve Jobs ever talk about the various features of Apple products. Standing on stage, he didn’t push the speed of the iPhone’s processor or the screen resolution, for example. He knew most people didn’t care. And the ones who did, could easily find that information on Apple’s website or product literature. In other words, Jobs, and this has continued beyond his death—focused on the story. He went out of his way to emphasize how the product affects you.
Jobs talked about how annoying it is to carry both a phone, for example, and an MP3 player and how, with an iPhone—when it first released—you’re condensing them down to one easy-to-carry device. It’s about simplicity, productivity, style—all things he knows people were interested in. But don’t miss the big point. He focused on eliminating people’s problems, not on selling his product’s best features. This takes extreme discipline. Because when you launch a product, or when an agent works with a client, to sell a home, everyone, usually, is most excited by the technical specs or upgrades, and all of the different ways your product/home pushes the envelope or is superior, and it’s easy to assume your customer/buyer feels the same way. But, I will tell you, from experience, typically they don’t. They care about their problems and how your product/home is going to fit into their life.
This is why I cringe, when I see properties being marketed the way most agents market properties, because those homeowners, their clients, are losing profit. Instead of marketing like Apple. They are marketing like Nokia.
To read more about the importance of strategy and differentiation, back in June I wrote an article titled, “True
Differentiation: How it impacts profit and dictates strategy when selling a home.” For a free copy of that article, just send a request to: www.literature4charity.com.
Two: Be revolutionary.
When Steve Jobs took the stage, the whole world watched. This is because the world came to understand that Steve Jobs was different. He was a visionary. A leader. He lived and breathed innovation. He saw himself as an outcast, and as someone who went against the grain. Steve Jobs was no copycat. Nor/is any product Apple releases. When selling your home. The same principle should apply. Be different. Be revolutionary. To have your home be seen, as just another home for sale, I must admit, is a death sentence. In the sea of smartphones, you want to be sure your home is positioned as THE iPhone.
The importance of positioning—innovation versus commoditization—is something I talk about in my book, “The Value Driven Approach to Sell Real Estate: A practical guide to protect yourselffrom Real Estate Greed & bank an extra $30,000 by thinking like the great Warren Buffet.”
Three: draw out the suspense as long as your can.
Apple doesn’t release products. They release stories. Suspense is not something inherent to products. Suspense is something you build. Suspense, in literary terms, is a story element. And it is built, typically, through a series of well- thought/planned events. During this period—in the preparation/pre-release phase—is when that buzz peaks.
Anticipation grows. Buyers begin to line up. They camp out. The news media starts to speculate. And when this happens, suspense reaches its highest point. That’s when Apple releases the product.
How else does one sell 10-million iPhones in a week?
The real secret here, though, is the power of story. And, being smart enough to recognize that you must architect a series events to create this buzz.
Most agents, though, sadly, rush straight to listing the home for sale, prematurely, before this buzz can be built. I suspect this is because they don’t fully understand the impact that
‘the power of story’ can have on a home’s value. If you wish to learn more, back in May
I wrote a detailed article on this. “Four Stories to Higher Profit—from your home sale, and, anything else you sell in life.” For a copy of that article, just drop a quick note to: Stevew@literature4charity.com.
As I continue to learn more about Apple’s release strategies and, specifically, how they can be applied to real estate to obtain a superior result for my clients, you’ll be the first to know.
An entrepreneur and a relentless innovator of the real estate industry, Steven Weirich Is the co-creator of the “The Value Driven Approach to Sell Real Estate,” author of the infamous report, “Frauds, Lies,, Cheats & Unethical Scams,” Steven also founded Arlington Heights & Mount Prospects Nurse’s Only Program®, and is a licensed agent with Re/Max Masters. Weirch has been called “provocative and entertaining,” but also “a committed philanthropist” for his mission to raise/donate over $10,000 to local charities each year. Steven is a leader in the Arlington Heights-Mount Prospect business community as well, and co-founded ENG (Entrepreneurs Networking GroupTM) Arlington-Prospect Chapter-an exclusive group of business owners, sales professionals, and entrepreneurs, focused on three pillars of impact: Philanthropy, Business, and Growth.
For a FREE copy of Steven’s book, “The Value Driven Approach To Sell Real Estate: How to protect yourself from Real Estate Greed & bank an extra $30K in profit by thinking like the great Warren Buffet,” visit: www.literature4charity.com . Expect delivery in 3-5 business days via USPS Priority Mail.