Mindset, Marketing, Commissions and Chinese Food | #REalAdvice 3 with William Tong

What are you really good at in your business?

 Are you amazing at lead generation? Or are you great at closing the sale? Open house? No stress; you’ve got this!

These skills that you’ve developed are the cornerstones of your business, and help you to be GREAT at one thing, so that you can continue to keep your business moving and growing as you take the time to master the areas of business you aren’t so good at yet.

 By being really good at one thing, you’re also providing exceptional value to your clients.

 You know how commissions are in a downward trajectory? Not so when you are providing exceptional value!

 Ready to niche your business so you can become an expert at one aspect of it and make it a pillar? Don’t miss William Tong on this episode of #REalAdvice!


Guest Introduction:

This episode’s guest on the #REalAdvice podcast is William Tong. Located in Los Angeles, California, William has been working in real estate for years. In a time when realtor commissions are in a downward trend, William’s commissions are going up. That’s because he focuses on going above and beyond in serving his clients and adding value.


Highlights of this episode:

●     Jonathan introduces William, and they talk about the part of Los Angeles where William lives and works.

●     I think it's very important to find your niche, embrace it, and claim it for your own. You can’t be good at all the things; it’s best to find one thing; one area that you are great at, and make it the cornerstone of your business.

●     Make sure to have a mindset of collaboration and cooperation: you can’t do everything and be everywhere, so you want to have a strong network that you can reach into when you have leads in other areas.

●     “You can be a one man army, or you can be a team. Two people who collaborate will always achieve more than one person alone.”

●     Instead of driving back and forth to show a house four hours away, utilize your network, and use that time to build your business niche instead!

●     My ultimate goal is to help as many people as I can grow their businesses. My mentor told me, the more people that you help, the more that it will come back to you.

●     This business can be easy if you're doing the right things consistently. You're not getting distracted. A 19-year-old college student can be a top producer!

●     I believe the glass is 100% full, half full of water, half full of air, half plus a half is a full glass.

●     People need to be able to lock down in master certain pillars of lead generation as their foundation. Because if you don't lock one thing down, then you have no foundation. Once you lock down one thing, and get really good at it, you can start exploring other things. The thing that happens though, is that people try something new, and don’t give it enough time to start working before they give up.

●     Make sure you’re engaging with your community and those around you. It doesn’t have to be a sales talk; just make sure that you are present, and listening: when an opportunity rises to serve, you’ll be there and ready! Always be looking for opportunities to bring value to those around you.

●     Break past the perception that the broader the target, the more leads you will get. Have a niche, and target that specific person.

●     In 2018, most leads came from organic social media: get out there and tell your story!

●     Many agents have relaxed, and are providing less value for their clients. If you want a bigger commission, go out there and offer as much value as you can. Serve above and beyond.

●     If you only get one takeaway from this episode, here’s William’s best piece of advice: “Keep learning. Keep growing. Try seeking out people who are succeeding in the areas that you want to be successful in. See what it is they're doing. Ask them to mentor you.”


Special shout out to William Tong for being this episode’s guest for #REalAdvice!


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Audio version below!


Full Transcript

William: 00:00 Guac it up. Say that again. GUAC. Walk walking up. All right, we're going to start.

Jonathan: 00:30 What's up everybody? And welcome back to a really device. Today we are with Mr. William Tong, a phenomenal rock star agent from the city of

William: 00:40 Los Angeles. The Chinese food areas, the Chinese factories. That's right. The La Times calls my home city Arcadia, the Chinese Beverly Hills. There's a ton of amazing, amazing Chinese food in my area. So I figured I might as well say I'm in the Chinese food areas. Just call it.

Jonathan: 00:57 So if you actually look at a map, is there an actual Chinese food area on the map?

William: 01:03 Chinatown. It's not that. Yeah, it's everything east and north of Chinatown. Chinatown is basically right next to downtown. So for me, my areas downtown north of there and east of there, and when you go east of there, you find that a lot of Chinese immigrants have actually moved into the city over the last 30 years. And they've brought their culture, they brought their food with them. Uh, really love the food part so you can actually get down to the different provinces of China. So there's Beijing food, there's Songhai food, there's a sesh wants, it's fine food and there's noodles is rice as hotpot. There's dumplings, there's dim sum, there's barbecue, a charcoal barbecue. They're spicy food. There's not spicy or making me hungry. There's glass noodles, there's fun, there's a, I floods getting Jimmy's, but just in the Chinese food alone, the list goes

Jonathan: 01:49 on and on. Sweet. Well, jumping right into it, I think it's very important and you're actually talking about it right now on actually being that niche, finding that niche, embracing it obviously and claiming it for your own. I think a lot of agents that are out there are, you know, they want to claim an entire county, you know, and the entire state. Um, what, what, what would your piece, your piece of advice be to that? Let's say somebody out there advertising, Hey, I'm, I'm new to real estate and I'm x agent, which as you and I know is one that's impossible, but to, in their eyes they think, oh, you know, the broader, the better because I have a better chance of getting clients. If I worked in entire state, what, what would your piece of advice be to them?

William: 02:36 Somebody's doing that. When I first started out, I was, I worked at a really, really broad area and I think a lot of agents do as well just because business is so few and far between that they work as hard as they can on the leads and the business and the clients that they do get. But in the longterm, their business would actually suffer because if they can start building relationships as soon as possible with people in areas that are adjacent to the areas they're familiar with, then by making those relationships, they can refer to those agents and those agents ideally would reciprocate and refer back. So for me, I always try and have a collaboration sharing, cooperation mindset. And if those agents, when they first start out, if they have a lead in an area that they're not familiar with, they find the best agent in the area who was open to sharing, who's collaborative, who was a good person and honest and hard worker refer to that agent referred to Asian all day. Because in the future when that agent has a client for your area, the idea is that they'll refer it back to you. So I think in the long term, building these strategic relationships is much smarter than trying to work a really broad area. You know, you can be a one man army or it can be a team. And they always say that two people together who collaborate well will always achieve more than one person alone.

Jonathan: 03:43 Got It. So it's not about competition. It's not about looking at the neighbor that is not only in your office, but the neighbor multiple cities away and say, Hey, no, I don't want to work with those people. I want to do it on my own. I want to drive three hours this way, two hours back this way. Like I can do it. I can do, I can do it. I'm going to be the best, you know? No, no, don't work with them. You know, you know, they're four hours from me. I can totally do that. Like that's not the way. Well if they are driving two to four hours, I hope they're listening to your podcast that down. Thanks for that. Thanks for that. Uh, but yeah, it doesn't make sense because the two,

William: 04:17 four hours that they spend driving back and forth, let's say they go on five showings stats, anywhere from 10 to 20 hours, that time could be much better spent farming and working on their home areas and mastering their market. So until the agent has 50, 60, 70% market share in the market that they're in, it doesn't really make sense to expand to areas that they're not that comfortable with. Lock down your home area first. I think that longterm is much smarter.

Jonathan: 04:41 Sweet. While we jumped right into a question, but, uh, for everybody listening, why don't you tell us a, you know, a few sentences about yourself, who you are, what you like to do, maybe what you don't like to do. I don't know. So you said I'm a Rockstar Star match that just a guy. So you weren't jamming out when, when we started playing the music. I loved it. It was, it's

William: 05:02 brilliant. I love it. Yeah. The music. Super Awesome. Love the intro. Very, very classy, very, very trendy, very hip, which is everything you embody. Very innovative. I love it. Love the music. In terms of basically me, I'm just, I'm just a guy. I'm just a guy trying to work hard, trying to succeed, set up a good foundation for himself and his family so that in the future they don't have to worry about money. Money is not what I'm looking for, but I need to work hard so that I can be successful so that we don't have to worry about money. So that's one of the main things that I am trying to do, which is to work as hard as I can to accomplish as much as I can. So I can lay down a foundation of success for myself, for my family, for the people I work with in the future.

William: 05:39 My ultimate goal is to help as many people as I can grow their businesses. I was mentored by the amazing Andy see one of my mentors. He basically shared with me that the more people that you help, the more that it will come back to. And that's something that I've always believed, but to have someone to be able to articulate it was so successful on that level and continuing to up his game is just for me, very inspirational. So I want to be able to share as much as I can. I want the people around me to be as successful as possible. The more successful they are, the more they learn, the more they grow. Hopefully the more they can teach me, the more I can grow my own business.

Jonathan: 06:12 What about your personal side? Um, as far as you know, what is it that you'd like to do a hobby wise? Sure. I like to do pretty much everything. Snowboarding, surfing, basketball, rock climbing, indoor rock climbing. I love to eat. Love Board Games, love puzzles. I love hanging out with friends, love movies, a lot of things. I think a lot of people, they get caught up in the business business business, whether you're brand new, whether you've been in it for 5 billion years, it's it's business, business, business, business, and then life. Whatever's left. Hey, you know, work, work, work, work, work or work. Ah, I get it. I get a break, you know? And then they take a break and then they go back into this like long grind and hustle and all these other words that you hear out there. What is your perspective on, on those people that are putting their life in their personal aspects and their hobbies and the things that they like to do outside of business, they're putting that to the side. What, what would you say to those people?

William: 07:07 It has to be a balance. Otherwise you burn out. I've burnt out many times. And then to recover from a bird out yet you have to waste more time than if you had just planned recreation time and planned a vacation plan, something ahead of time. So there are times now where I can feel maybe I'm getting ready to burn out and then I'm going to take a couple of days or a couple of hours or half day and just basically chill out, relax, recharge. Just so I don't get to the point where I'm out for a couple days. So that's not what I'm looking for. I'm looking to keep growing, keep progressing. So I definitely think that you have to have a balance. I met this one kid, he's only 19 he's full time undergraduate school at Uc Irvine. He loves real estate. He loves it to death.

Jonathan: 07:46 He loves doing open houses, he loves meeting clients. He loves being a multi million dollar agent

William: 07:51 and he's just dominating these agents that had been his market for 10 2030 years because those agents see it as work, whereas he sees it as fun. So his full time jobs to be a student for him. Real estate is a side Gig. It's a side hustle. It's very, very fun for him. So for me to see it from his perspective, it reminds me that we need to remember, fine, identify the things that we love in this industry and then be able to really center our business around that. So if you think of this as a grind, as a work, as work, it's just going to be much harder. Glass half full glass half empty type of thing. For me, my, I believe the glass is 100% full, half full of water, half full of air, half plus a half is a full glass.

Jonathan: 08:32 And I think it's also very important that, you know, you said, hey, this guy is 19 years old, he's in school, he's got tons of things going on and a lot of people like to use excuses on why they can't do this, why they can't do that. Um, and then a 19 year old comes in and they're a top producer and then it's like, well, how the heck is that guy doing it? You know, I've been, I've been doing this and I've been doing that and I've been doing this and are blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. And I think the point that they're not realizing is, is that this business is, I don't want to say basic, but this business can be easy if you're doing the right things consistently. You're not getting distracted. You're not, you know, trying to do this. I'm trying to do that and trying to add this and trying to do all these different things.

Jonathan: 09:15 But you know that guy, whoever he is is that, I'm sure he doesn't have as much being thrown at him cause he's also a full time student. So he's like, hey, in order for this to work, I have x amount of hours, which are limited because I'm in school so I have to do x, Y, Z in these hours. And if I do that, I make money where I think there's a lot of full time agents who, you know, their calendar is open. So it's hey I do this, then I do that and then I feel this. And, and at the end of the day when they look at their business, it's like, oh crap, I didn't actually sell anything. I'm doing all these different things, but it's not working. And the reason is they're doing too much. Um, what would you say

William: 09:55 is it, what is that too much point for an agent when that's like, dude,

Jonathan: 10:03 don't try to add that like you're awesome at this. Why don't you just continue to do that? You get what I mean? Does that make sense to you?

William: 10:10 It definitely makes sense for me, goes back to my personality, my style. I would love to be able to be the focus guy that plans it out, that it's very strategic, but I'm more of a doer so I just do things. And then as I've progressed and learned over the years, I kind of just pick and locked down different things every year. And then as I, for example, really get to learn and master and execute open houses as I learn, execute expired's agent agent referrals in international, international clients. As I locked these different things in, I now have more time to focus on the things that I haven't mastered. So I wholeheartedly agree with you that people need to be able to lock down in master certain pillars of lead generation as their foundation. Because if you don't lock one thing down, then you have no foundation.

William: 10:55 You're building a house on sticks and mud and that rarely turns out well, especially if, uh, you know, big, bad wolf comes along and blows your house down, so you're 100% right. People need to lock down certain pillars of lead generation. Once those are locked down, then they can start exploring other things. The classic mistake is that people before they have launched something down, they think, oh, it doesn't work. They quit on it and then they try and shift to something else. So your perspective definitely, you know, really on point, if it's not working for you, figured out why isn't it working, lock it down and then move on to the next one. Or once you have a locked down, make sure that you maintain it and then move on to the next one. Don't just move on if you haven't locked one thing down.

Jonathan: 11:34 So for everybody listening, what's one thing that's working for you currently?

William: 11:39 One thing that's working for me pretty well is I would probably say open houses are working really well for me. It calling expired houses.

Jonathan: 11:46 Dos Dos don't work for anybody. Ah. So I'll sit there and you just stand and you just text people and four hours by then you go home and then you complain. And I thought, open houses don't work.

William: 11:56 This will be my gift to you and your audience. So I always say open houses don't work if the agents don't work them.

Jonathan: 12:04 And, and I believe me am, I'm a huge proponent and open houses. I think open hand are phenomenal, I think.

William: 12:11 Yeah.

Jonathan: 12:11 But most people that don't utilize them, it just makes the people that do look even better. So what, what would be a good piece of advice for somebody that's planning an open house that's, you know, they've already done open houses. Oh yeah. Open houses. Yeah. Those don't work. Waste of time. What's one thing that you know you can add to their toolbox in something?

William: 12:33 Try to make it a little bit better next time. The most important thing is, is rapport building cell from beginning to end. Whoever walks into that door has to trust you. If they don't trust you, if they think of you as a salesman, the night going to believe a word you say you have no leverage, no intellectual leverage. So you have to be able to build rapport. You have to be able to connect or at least just come across as nice and not offensive and not overly aggressive and not salesy and not pushy. So if, if I had to have when a one piece of advice, one of those were important, learn how to build report

Jonathan: 13:03 and let's say that I'm walking into that house and the agent or client or whoever it is that's walking into that open house comes in, let's take a few steps back. What, what are you doing marketing wise? What are you doing advertising wise? Um, that may be different than somebody else that's advertising and open house or not advertising and open house. And what I really want to get into the fact is, I know you do a lot of Facebook lives. Um, whether it'd be at a specific event, whether it be going to an event, whether it just be in the Chinese food areas, talking about different food. Um, how has Facebook lives, you know, helped you in your business and you know, been able to get you into a broader audience?

William: 13:46 Definitely. In terms of open houses, I'm going to have to listen to your podcast to get all the tips and tricks. I don't have, uh, any tips and tricks. I think most people don't utilize it ready for open houses. So, you know, Jonathan, you have amazing knowledge that you've put out there in terms of open houses. Um, it just really comes down to the classic stuff. Making sure that the pictures look good, that you're telling the right people, telling the neighborhood, you know, that you guys have an open house and to try and welcome as many people to come by as possible. In terms of Facebook lives, for me and social media, it just comes down to engagement. So it's engaging the people that are in my network, that are my friends, that are my family, that are my clients, that are agents that I'm trying to help or that have helped me just so I can stay top of mind.

William: 14:27 And that whenever I'm producing something or whenever I'm about to start a Facebook live, my perspective is always, if I was watching this, what would I think? Like what am I going to learn something? Is this interesting to me? So I don't, although I do a number of Facebook lives, I try not to do it randomly. Um, I know that the idea is you just trying to do as much as you can, but I think at this point there's so many people doing as, as they can that it's diluting, um, you know, just people's attention. So I call it the attention economy. So for me it's about trying to be on point as possible with my Facebook lives. Try and keep it super short and just put stuff out there that I think people will enjoy and that people are like, but at the same time, I'm no expert in social media. I have no idea what I'm doing.

Jonathan: 15:10 I'm just playing Facebook lives. So if you learn anything, let me know. So, so let's, let's flip the script then. If you had a specific social media question that you wanted to ask me that I can help you or maybe our audience can help you or your team or whatnot. Do you have any social media questions? I can answer. How do I get more social leads? How do I get more? How do I get more seller leads from social media? Okay. How do I get more seller leads from social media? I think that there's multiple ways to get sorrow. Leads. Let's talk about open houses. You're saying, hey, open houses is doing pretty good for me. There's a huge opportunity to get more seller leads. If you're working open houses and you're utilizing digital marketing. And what I mean by that is, you know, a lot of people want to do postcards and they want to do all these different things, but they don't really have a place to drive somebody to.

Jonathan: 16:07 And I think that it really starts off with one, identifying what your goal is. You, Hey, I want to get seller leads, people that want to list their house. So what I would do first off to say, okay, I need to make sure that I'm including the people that are likely to sell a property. What that means and what it's hard for people to understand is that means that your ad is not going to be seen by as many people. Why? Because you're, you need to get the buyers out of there and you need to get the random people out of there and you need to get people that want to sell a house. Well, when I start bringing people's numbers down and say, Hey, look, your ad can go to 1500 people, or your ad can go to 500 people, but those 500 people are likely to sell their house.

Jonathan: 16:48 Most people would still want those to go to 1500 people because the perception is the broader my message is, you know, the more likelihood that I have of attracting a lead, which we've already discussed is that's absolutely not the case. You should, you know, have that niche and target that specific person. So one of the cool things with Facebook that you can do in Facebook and Instagram when it comes to seller attraction is you can actually geo fence or you can draw an area around a specific neighborhood and you can specifically tell Facebook, hey, tell me the people that are living in this area. Okay, well great people that are living in this area. Maybe they have a house to sell. That's somebody that you would put your ad in front of. Okay? Now if we take it a step further, you can now say, tell me this.

Jonathan: 17:42 You know, in the people that live here, show me the people that are currently searching on Xyz site. You fill in the, okay. And if you have a seller, or excuse me, you have a client that is living in set area that is searching not just on your website, but searching on these huge websites out there that are then selling the leads back to you. If they're living in an area, they're searching on these sites, you can put an ad directly in front of them that's saying, Hey, are you looking at selling your house? And I would not initially go there because I like to kind of warm somebody up. And the best way to warm somebody up when it comes to selling is to show what you do selling a house and listing a property that most people don't do, or at least most people aren't showing that they do it.

Jonathan: 18:30 So I was talking on the last episode with Kevin and we were talking about all these different things that you can do just from a branding awareness aspect that yeah, you're going to get a lot of likes and you're going to get a lot of views and whatnot, but you're not going to get leads. But if you're getting 11 cents per engagement in that specific area for an ad, those are phenomenal people. Now to then show them the, you know, what is your home worth and all these different seller leads. But I think that in order to actually get somebody that wants to give you their home address, there's tons of way to get home address. But somebody that is saying, Hey, I'm actually thinking about selling. I think it's imperative to show them, hey, this is what I do. That's you phone calling. That's you door knocking.

Jonathan: 19:15 That's you doing marketing. That's you documenting all the things that you already do and putting that out on social media. So that way when it comes to an ad directly in front of them, that is very direct in, you know, you trying to get a specific ad, that's fine. Um, they then they know you, they say, Hey look, William Tong, this is what he does. This is the market that he works in. This is all of the things that he's doing currently for his listing on one, two, three main street. Oh Wow. I am actually thinking about selling my property. I would rather go with this person because I know his story. I know that, hey, he's doing this for a bigger goal. I know that, hey, he's working towards something larger than himself. I know all of these different things. And you know, I'm a huge proponent on agents telling their story and whatever their story is, that's their story.

Jonathan: 20:07 But when you hide behind your phone and you hide behind your ads and when you hide behind your postcards about being this perfect person who does so much, who's working and grinding and hustling and doing all these things like your forgetting about all the things that make you happy, you know, and, and that comes across to to, um, potential sellers. So I don't know if that answered your question or not, but I think that, you know, in order to start trying to get seller leads, you have to show your story because people want to work with people that they know, like, and trust. And that's not, hey, I know that you're looking to sell your house because I just duped you into some article. And to some ad that you didn't even know you were giving your address too, and now I'm calling you and threatening you to, you need to list your house right now.

Jonathan: 20:56 That's something that you need to start with and it may not produce a lien, but it's going to get your story heard and once your story is heard, you have a much higher probability of actually generating the lead. I tell this to every single person. Last year, 2018 nar digital age report says the number of leads that are out there, the highest percentage came from organic social media. Post 16% came from paid 46% organic, 30% higher organic. Why? People want to work these days with people that they know, like and trust. They've already been told all these different lies. They've been cheated. They've, they're being told they can go to these discounts and then the discounts don't work. And then they realized, well yeah, I went to the 1% guy but he didn't sell my house. I actually lost more money and now they don't trust us.

Jonathan: 21:47 They're working with agents that are telling him one thing and doing another thing. When they see you and they see that you're a shark diving, they see that you're a real person. They see that you're interacting, networking, communicating. They're like, this guy's the man. I'm being just guys. Just the guy. No, you're definitely more than a guy. So yeah, that was a long winded question, but hopefully it, uh, helped you out. I think there are a bunch of amazing gold nuggets in there. So really right now for that, one of the biggest things is story and connecting. Yeah. Then I have to get the story out there. So one of my goals for 2019, because I've picked a different thing every year. Open houses, expireds, agent, agent, frills. For me, 2019 is definitely storytelling and connecting more with the people around me. So I've just started a Facebook live as you, uh, you know, mentioned documenting.

Jonathan: 22:36 That was another nugget. And just basically I'm a, I'm an introvert. People don't believe me, but I'm an introvert. I've learned a lot of extroversion skills because in this industry and helps a lot. It's more of a survival mechanism. Extroversion for an introvert. So if you guys are introverts out there, you know, test your boundaries, get into uncomfortable spaces, I think that as you grow and you become more and more uncomfortable in those spaces, you will be more comfortable. Does that make sense? Definitely. Because we're now on a podcast. We have two cameras, three with a phone going around us. We've got professional equipment all around us. And about a year ago today probably I'd like that this would not have happened. Why? Because I didn't want to turn the phone on. I didn't want to start recording. You know, my wife would always tell me like, hey, your mouth is slanted.

Jonathan: 23:20 That's how I know that you're nervous. Now. Hopefully my mouth isn't slanted anymore, but you know, you just have to get started and you're going to get better. Um, and it's okay, you know? But if you don't, if you don't start anywhere, you're never going to get to that point. And when it comes back into the storytelling, it's, that's your story. That's okay. If that's your story, it may be good, may be bad, whatever it is, it's your story and you need to embrace it. If you don't like it. Yeah, you could definitely change different things that you do and whatever. But it's your story and it's your life. And if you like sports, great, tell people that you like sports, then hopefully you're going to attract people that also like sports. If you like sports, but you don't tell anybody likes sports and your buyer sell, buy or sell, buy or sell. And then you know you're working with somebody and you know you're going to a sports game. It's like, oh well why are you going to a sports game? You're supposed to be, you know, working on my house at nine o'clock at night. It's like, no, you don't get that when people already know you write. For me, it's definitely,

William: 24:23 it goes back to the balance like you spoke about. So one thing is I love playing basketball. So in a lot of my basketball, like type sessions where I go in and work out and play basketball, I try and talk to people and I'm never pitchy. I'm never like, Oh hey, have you been thinking of buying or selling a house? Uh, well I'll get to that later. But in those environments, I'm not pitching, I'm just always talking to people. And if someone mentioned something that, which is one thing I learned from Tom, if they mentioned, oh I've had a life change or basically I had a baby or I was thinking of moving or my lease is coming up, then that gives me an opportunity to kind of start the conversation and just basically add value to their lives. So I've know that if I know that someone is looking to buy property and for me I want identify what areas they're looking in and then basically try and help them prepare for the process as much as possible.

William: 25:09 So then this way they relaxed and not stressed. And also another thing that we do is that we try and find as many off market properties as possible because if you can find an off market property, then you're usually getting a better deal than a property that's on market. If a property is on market, you can pay market price or as close to it as possible. If it's off market then you're more likely to get a deal. So that's one way that I'm trying to add a lot of value. I recently had a case where one of my friends that I played basketball with, he had a house that he was selling in a in a city and it was represented by another agent who was a friend of the wife. The agent had it for two and a half months, no offers, price reduction.

William: 25:44 I took a look at it and I just said, look, you're marketing is not good. And you know when that contract ran out they switched it over to me. I took really nice photos. You know, we did the whole kitten caboodle, we did a bunch of open houses. We are very, very proactive with our marketing. And our engagement of the consumer. And within seven days, six days, we had seven offers. So with those seven offers, we were then able to push the price up and then we actually got into contract at a price significantly higher than what the other property cancel that, what the other property expired at. So it just kinda goes to show you the proper, the power of hard work and proper marketing. Like if this buyer had bought the house when it was on the market for two and a half months, they would have saved $10,000 $10,000. So appraisals, Thursday going to work hard, try and get as many jobs that value. Try and get that.

Jonathan: 26:36 I'm going to do a one 80 here cause I know you're super passionate about this topic. So I'm going to give you the platform to talk to all of the real estate agents that going to be listening to this podcast, um, on an organic scale and as I push ads in front of them so that way they'll hear this. So that way you can get your message to even more people. And this is going to go into the commission debate. And this is something that I know you and I have talked about. Uh, we've had it, you know, disgust at dinners and on a ship in the middle of the ocean and it gets heated and it gets heated. I'm really passionate and about my value. I'm going to, I'm going to lead into it saying that William is very strong in the fact that he thinks that agents should be taking x amount of commission.

Jonathan: 27:19 I'll let you obviously talk about it more and that it's something that, uh, you know, taking lower commissions and offering lower commissions to your cooperating brokers is something that's drastically hurting the market. And something that has definitely taken effect here in Los Angeles to where the norm now becomes something that's lower because hey, this is what other people are doing. And we've kind of gone away from what we would consider a full commission because the mindset of most agencies, I go in and I asked for x and then I usually will give x or hey, if I can make more than I can give this person. So why don't you go into depth a little bit more about that and you can speak directly into the camera when you are or are giving your plea to agents to stop taking lower commissions one and stop offering commissions. Um, lower commissions to cooperating brokers

William: 28:16 of say you're really putting me on the spot making me sweat except there's a camera right there. So they see I magically not sweating. Um, I'm a pretty cool and calm guy. Um, 90% of the time. So we talk about this topic. So yes, we have had many conversations about it. We obviously can't talk about the actual numbers for antitrust reasons. For me, it's not so much a full quote unquote for commission. It's whatever commission agents are worth. So as an agent, if you're really specialized, you're really good, you really trying to protect your client. Do you add more value than that x percentage of commission that you're asking for? It's kind of like when you have a job and your salary, are you adding more value to the company? Don't what your salary is. Because if you're not, then you're probably going to let go.

William: 29:00 But if you're adding the value, then it's awesome that you're there and you're contributing to the company and to the success of everyone on the team. So when it comes specifically to commissions, are you as an agent contributing the value that you are asking for it? I think in this industry the majority of agents are not. And that's why there have been a number of discount shops that have come up, a hundred percent commission brokerages where some agents in these brokerages, on their signs advertise x percentage commission that is significantly below what everyone else is charging. If everyone else is doing their work and you break it down to a per hour basis, there simply is not enough time and money that is being contributed to the deal to have a good outcome for the seller. Because a lot of agents have automated so many things that they just kind of put it onto the back burner. They hope the buyer's agent comes along, brings a buyer, and then they just go ahead and get their listing side commission. So as they have done this work, they're now willing to take less money. So I think that on an industry scale, as agents have stopped improving and have gotten really lackadaisical, for lack of a better word, lackadaisical lag.

William: 30:10 Oh, thank you. Try that. My jokes are terrible. I readily admit that. So in this industry, as agents have stopped, specializing has stopped improving a stopped adding, adding value, they commissions have come down. But in terms of me and my transactions, there've been multiple cases where I sell properties for more than an agent or company that had been hired previously. Or I'm selling for higher than the appraised value. The appraisal, ideally being an independent third party analysis of a property and what a fair market price should be, or I'm selling it significantly higher than what the seller was asking for. So for me, it's simply a case where I work extremely, extremely hard to have better results, better performance, higher net value, whatever it is more than they would have had with 99.99% of other agents and other companies. So in a market where we're starting to see commissions start to trend downward, I'm actually trending upward and it's not like I'm trying to take more money from my sellers. I'm, I'm adding significantly more value than other agents on a net like perspective. I'm netting my clients more and I have multiple cases to show this. So this is what I showed to sellers in listing presentations. Here's a property that was listed by another agent, two months, three months, no offers, no sales, multiple price reductions. Here's my property, my marketing, here's my strategy, here's how I sold it for more than your agent. It's black and white. It's numbers. So to wrap up,

Jonathan: 31:38 wrap that up. What you're saying is agents are acts asking, excuse me for x commission and hopefully that's what we would consider a full commission. That the issue with what happens after is that too many agents have gotten relaxed over the last few years. They've gotten comfortable with just signing a listing agreement, taking a few photos on their iPhone and then putting on the mls and then it sells with multiple offers, which we're not seeing as much currently that hey, in order for us to fully get what we deserve, we need to go above and beyond and look, somebody could go somewhere else and they can get that discount and they can try and save money in their eyes. And Yeah, they're definitely going to do that. If the agent that's sitting across from the table was going to offer the exact same thing that that person does and that company does, but when we can get the audience and our clients and everybody to see that, hey, working with an agent, not only are you going to get x, Y, Z, you're going to get a, B, c, d, e, f, g, you know, you're going to get all these different things and look at all the different benefits that you get while working with us.

Jonathan: 32:50 And what agents need to realize is that look, the, the moment that you take a lower commission, you're hurting your fellow brother. And sister to the left of you because that's now the norm. Hey, no, that's what this person does and they do x, y, Z for me. That's what this person has. They do x, y, Z for me. But if you stand your ground and you perform, you provide that value and then you go even higher than that, then everybody's going to see that hey one, yes, they took a higher commission, but to which is most important, I made more money and the reason that they made more money is no robot. No piece of technology can absolutely take away that agent to agent interaction, that personal relationship that an agent can provide. What? What are your thoughts on on that?

William: 33:46 So it definitely overall lines with my perspective except for the part about the money because for me it's, it's sincerely not about the money. It's about about the money for the, for the client we, oh yes. Okay. The net. So them, then I retract my almost eight years about the money. How much money you're making for them. Exactly. Yes. Because for a lot of our sellers, especially in your market, in my market, this could be the last large asset that they ever sell in their lives. And it's been the case for me multiple times where they're retiring and this is the last house they're going to sell. They're going to move into the next place and that's going to be it. So every single dollar extra that I can get them more than another agent would have, this is one extra dollar they have in their nest egg, in their retirement for the rest of their lives. So for me, it's deeply, deeply personal that I'm able to get my clients as much money as I possibly can. So overall on the very nice, friendly guy, 90% of the time, but there's that 10% where I can get really mean.

William: 34:45 Yes, the dude, dude, dude, dude, dude, that's a scary sound. That's my 10% as much of a set. So yeah, next time my 10% comes out, I'm going to play that sound. Okay.

Jonathan: 34:56 Well, what's one parting word of advice that she would give somebody who's been in the business for a while and they're now realizing that, hey, just being average is just not working. I'm not selling as much. I'm not doing as much. The last few years were great, but now crap, I gotta do more. I got to work more. Actually have to schedule and prospect and do all these different things that I hear top agents are doing. Now I need to do those. What's one piece of advice that you would give that agent? Just one thing that they can do today that is going to help them, uh, in their business, your business.

William: 35:33 The best piece of advice I can say is keep learning. Keep growing. Try seek out people who are succeeding in the areas that you want to be successful in. See what it is they're doing. Ask Them to mentor you. People aren't going to mean to you for free. Then I can mentor you just because you asked. You have to work hard. You have to add value to them. So do whatever it is that you can help them grow their business, and then ideally it's reciprocal and they're going to help you go yours. So always learn, always improve, always grow. Because if you're standing still, you're going to get left behind. And going back to all those agents that kind of have just let themselves become average and have stopped growing to them, I would say get better or get out.

Jonathan: 36:10 I like it. Get better or get out. Thank you so much for being with us again, William Tong from Los Angeles, California. William, where can people find you on social media?

William: 36:21 People can find me at g. L I. F I add Gliffy. You can find me on Facebook if you searched for William Tong. If you don't see my picture, just search for William J tongue, all one word, and I'm a pop up right there on linkedin. I'm William Tong. I don't use it at all. It's a graveyard, but like a Zombie movie. I'm going to have to revive that.

Jonathan: 36:41 William Tong Los Angeles, and now we rocked out Chinese food areas.