For you to win the note closing game, you need to make the shots, but before you can make the shots you will need to practice. March madness and the note business are pretty much the same because you don’t have to be the big hedge fund or the guy who buys a thousand assets. All you need to do is to be the best at what you do. Being good at closing notes means being consistent with follow ups, sending out emails, and making the phone calls.
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March Madness: Make Your Shots And Win The Note Closing Game
This episode is a little bit different than most. It’s good to switch it up a little bit. It is all about why your note in real estate business is like March Madness. If you don’t know what March Madness is, it’s this time of year where we have the NCAA Men’s and Women’s College Basketball Tournament. It’s always great to see a lot of the excitement that goes in the universities. A lot a lot of people get excited about it. Besides the Super Bowl, it’s probably the largest betting weekend amongst workers where people fill out their brackets to see who’s going to go from the 68 teams and make it to the NCAA tournament down to the final championship game.
My bucket is already busted. I watched as the first half of my team that I picked to win, Arizona, got kicked out or lost in the first round with 13-0. Arizona ranked fourth seed which means they are in the Top 16 in teams. They lost to a team that wasn’t even in the Top 30, Buffalo, a team that had no NBA superstars. The Arizona team, when they lost, they had two stars that immediately said they were going to go skip their sophomore, junior, and senior seasons and go straight to the NFL.
It’s an exciting time of the year. It’s also the biggest Thursday and Friday that people take off from work, specifically men, because they take Thursday and Friday off to go sit at home and watch basketball. There’s a lot of excitement going on. Out of 17 million brackets, some of them ESPN, only 10,000 are still good. A lot of people are already upset with a couple of the upsets. It was exciting to watch. I only watched the first half of the Arizona and Buffalo game because we went to a movie afterwards. I was like, “This isn’t looking good,” when the big team with two future NBA stars are down by two at the half.
You can see the passion of the Buffalo team rocking and rolling along and making up for their lack of talent compared to the Arizona team. They were hungrier. They wanted it more. That’s the thing that I love about March Madness. You have a lot of buzzer beaters. You have a lot of teams that make it to the tournament for the first time. Houston won for the first time in twenty years in NCAA playoff game. You have so much pride and excitement, not only by the players but the bench and the fans. It’s a great orchestra of entertainment to watch a lot of things. I don’t watch much college basketball. I watch Texas. I’m a Longhorns fan.
There’s a lot of awesomeness going on. There’s a lot of upsets. There are a lot of people that are excited to get to the dance. They’re excited to get in. You see them winning conference tournaments. If you ever watched the game called Hoosiers, it’s like Hickory making it to the big dance in Indianapolis, playing in Indianapolis High School, and Jimmy hit the winning shot to win the tournament. It’s a lot like that for us in the note business. A lot of people give up before they even get in the game. A lot of people might practice. They might make a couple of offers in the note business. They might reach out to asset managers once and then not get any response back so they don’t follow up with things.
If you’ve ever heard the quote by Michael Jordan, “I am good at what I’m doing because I’ve missed over a million shots. I’ve missed hundreds of game-winning shots, but have also made a bunch.” That’s the mentality I would love to see people have when it comes to the note business. Unfortunately, only 1% of people have the drive and the determination to make it where they want to go. Only about 1% of people out there will ultimately stick to what they are passionate about, stick to being mentally tough, and overcoming obstacles and doing things on a daily basis or weekly basis to make things happen.
I got an email from a lady who reached out to me almost a year ago wanting to work with us, “I love to come in and I’m not an expert on this stuff,” and I’m like “Great,” reached out, called twice, left two voice messages and an email, and never got a response back. Then out of the blue, “I’m ready.” I’m like, “No offense, I reached out to you a while back. We have since solved it.” I don’t need to work with somebody who’s not going to return phone calls or at least give me the courtesy to tell me, “I’ve taken a job somewhere else.” That’s completely fine. I don’t have any time for that.
If you want me to help you out now, you burnt that bridge on the frontend. You have to realize that if you want to succeed in this world, you have more resources than you’ve ever had before. You have less excuses and less bullshit you can feed yourself to find success in whatever your drive is or whatever your determination is. You don’t have to be a number one seed to win the tournament. Only about 60% of number one seeds win the tournament anyway. There’s still a variety of seconds and thirds. You don’t have to be the best at what you do to make an impact. That is the same thing when it comes to the note business.
You don’t have to be the big hedge fund. You don’t have to be buying thousands and thousands of assets. You can carve out what you need to call yourself successful. Success is what you determine it to be. You don’t have to buy 100 assets a year. Maybe you need to buy twenty assets a year, maybe you buy ten. Whatever that number is, you can accomplish it. What you don’t accomplish is if you give something a try and then don’t continue to follow up. This business is all about rinse and repeat. “I’m going to reach out to asset managers. I’m going to do some marketing and raise capital. I’m going to sell some assets. I am going to raise more capital.” That’s what it all comes down to, and then managing your vendors.
Many people buy assets. I see people that have bought assets initially and they stopped buying. They focus on the two, three, or four assets. I was talking to some students. They went back to work. I’m like, “What are you talking about? Why did you go back to work?” “Because I didn’t buy enough assets.” I’m like, “How many assets did you make offers on?” “Ten.” I’m like, “How many did you buy that time?” “Two.” “Why don’t you make assets? You had 90 plus days or 120 plus days. Why are you not continuing to buy? You had all the resources. You had all the emails. You had all the phone numbers?”
Some people aren’t comfortable trying to be a success. They’re scared of their own image. When I talk to people all the time and they’re saying that they’re struggling with their business, I ask them a couple of things. First of all, “How many emails do you send on a daily basis? How many asset managers are you reaching out to?” Usually, those two numbers are zero. You can’t expect to win the tournament or even get into the tournament if you’re not taking shots.
One of my dreams growing up as a young kid was to play football. My dad was very against it when I was a young kid. He didn’t want me to get hurt. Finally, I was able to convince the coaches in my high school to let me play. I played and excelled at it. I was a linebacker and did well. I was two-time Team Captain and won some accolades, Player of the Week, All District, and all that good stuff that goes along with it. Then I got a scholarship. I was one of the one-percenters that made it from the high school level to the college ranks. I played there. It wasn’t fun for me after a while because my knee was hurting and I lost interest in it.
I love football, still a big fan of the game, baseball, and sports, but it got the point where it was not fun playing any more. My knee was killing me. I knew that I wasn’t going to advance to the NFL. I wasn’t the fastest guy like I used to be. I got playing time but it wasn’t as much as I wanted to be, so I had to adjust my goals for awhile. I remember talking to my parents and I told them that I didn’t want to play anymore. It was very heart-wrenching to me because I was letting their dream die on me and I remember the pain.
If you have a dream, go out and get it. Your dream of financial independence isn’t limited by your ability to hit somebody or run for 640 or to catch the ball or throw up 225 pounds twenty times like they’re doing at the NFL Combine for college athletes. It’s not limited by that. You have your brain. If you can write an email, post a video, reach out to somebody, and go network, you can find success. You don’t have to rely on a job to determine that you’re $40,000 or $50,000 or $60,000 salary is what you are worth to society.
Those guys at Buffalo, when they walked in the room, the coach said something on the interviews, “Our guys knew we could play. Our guys knew we belong. Our guys thought we were better.” You have twelve to thirteen guys on the Buffalo bench who probably aren’t going to see the NBA. They have all the talent on the University of Arizona side. Two amazing guys that are going to make millions of dollars couldn’t wait for the newscast to be over to say, “We’re declaring for the NBA draft and won’t be back next year.” That’s what it comes down to. Those that have success in this business have a bigger heart.
You can have all the private money in the world, but it doesn’t mean you’re going to be a success at that level. I see more success coming from people that don’t have private money or don’t have half a million saved. I see more success from those people than I do those that have a lot of money. Those that have a lot of money hunt and pack, they don’t market. They may buy some assets, but at some point, they run out of their own money and they say, “I got to wait until I get my assets sold before I can go back and replenish the funds.” That’s not the case. There’s $7 trillion in private money sitting on the sidelines waiting for you to pick up the phone. There’s millions and millions of dollars at these self-directed IRA trustees just sitting there making zero, waiting for somebody to come and say, “I got a deal. Would you like to partner with me on it? I’ve got an opportunity here.”
I guarantee you can recruit the big boys, because those investors, those other asset managers at banks, they’re waiting for somebody to call them with an opportunity to get it off their books. They’re not waiting for the Blackstones, the Bank of Americas, the Chases, or the number one seeds, to come in and buy their assets. They’re looking for somebody who’s a thirteen seed or sixteen seed who’s making it to the dance for the first time and excited to be playing there. That’s why I love this business because it’s equal footing.
When I go to conferences like NoteExpo, IMN, or Paper Source, you see these funds that are there, these funds that are backing these employees. The nice suits that talk down to people, I want to smack them in their face because they don’t have as much on the line as the guy who’s there who saved money to get to the event, who’s as, if not, hungrier for success than some guy who’s making $70,000 or $100,000 salary. You have a bigger chance at success from being a scrapper than somebody who’s entitled to success, who’s entitled because they have a job.
They may not know it yet, but all those people that went through our workshops over the last couple of years or watching us on Facebook Live or listening to us on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play, TuneIn or watching the replays on YouTube or Vimeo, I challenge you to go do something. I challenge you to get in the game. I challenge you to grab a hold of that ball and go up and dunk it or lay it up if you can. Most of you are scared to take action or afraid of Shaquille O’Neil guarding the basket and wants to swat you away. That may happen occasionally in some businesses, but you can’t guard from the outside. You can’t guard when you’re outside of the basket.
The beautiful thing about us, smaller guys, is that we are boutique. We’re agile, mobile, hostile. We can make changes on the fly. We can adjust our markets to make sense of assets in different areas whereas the big guys, they don’t have the flexibility to do it. They have a lot of the resources but they’re too big. They’re like the Titanic. They can’t get out of the way of the iceberg that’s dead ahead whereas us as note investors, the smaller guys, the boutique guys and gals, we have a lot more flexibility. You have a lot more opportunities out there to reach out on a regular basis. You have to use the tools that are there for you.
In today’s market, there are so many tools available to you. There are so many things that you can use that are free, that are online. You have to do a search. You just got to think a little bit outside the box. You have to come up with a little bit of inbounds play or different pick and roll. What has been your biggest surprise as a note investor? What has been your biggest a-ha moment that wasn’t so difficult moment, that was an easy and unexpected moment? What has been your biggest surprise as you’ve been getting into this business?
When we get to the note business, we are dribbling that basketball over our feet out of bounds. We don’t know what we are doing, which is okay. If you don’t have any experience in the mortgage or finance industry, you keep working at it. You keep practicing, keep getting better. What I’m trying to get at is if you get a second this weekend and you flip on over to TBS, CBS, or ESPN, stop a second and watch and look at who’s playing who. It’s the David versus Goliath. It’s the higher rank stuff beating the snot out of the lower rank stuff. When the brackets came out, there was a lot of uproar that a lot of the mid-major, the smaller conferences got crappy bids, and the better-known teams, better-talented teams have more of pretty, cheesy, or easy schedule. That was the case for a couple of teams that lost that were predicted had higher ranking teams. That also was a case for those lower ranked team that pulled off the upset.
Keep that in mind. You have the opportunity, whether it’s only individual asset or smaller assets or reaching out to these asset managers of banks that have smaller portfolios or contract for deeds or other assets or reaching out like a great tip from Brent Garrett about how he reaches out to attorneys handling foreclosures on owner-financed deals to find deals. You’re not going to see a hedge fund do that. You’re not going to see a big bank do that. That’s a phenomenal idea. That was so well worth in the whole episode. That’s what I’m trying to get at. You have the opportunity to be the Diaper Dandies to be the people that are new on the block making things happen to pulling off the upset, the pulling off the buzzer beaters and advancing to the next round.
What’s been your biggest surprise as a note investor as somebody who’s brand new to the business? If you’re brand new to this, I get you’re like, “Big surprise is watching this guy every week on Facebook or listening to him.” One of the things that I get from people all the time is that it was easier than I expected it to be. They are surprised. Laura Blunk came to my office. She sent an email out to the asset managers. She was surprised that as she was driving from her house, an hour later, she got the asset manager to call her, “I got some assets,” and she’s like, “I’m blown away.” I’m like “One email already resulted in one lead.” That’s the thing I hear the most, “I was surprised when he actually called me.” I’ll give example. I’ve sat down with so many people and help them write emails out to a database and they get people to respond back they have money to invest, “This person has $20,000.” Yes, not $100,000 or $1 million, but they got some money to invest with.
An email is the lowest entry point for anything. Anybody can write an email. I would prefer that most people sent it from their email service provider like MailChimp. I use Infusionsoft. It’s important for me. One audience has done a great job of embedding himself in different virtual Facebook groups for different cities across the country. He has done a great job with the Memphis market, doing some email blasts out to his database and some social media posts. It’s not that hard. The hardest part initially is the creation of an email template or figuring out “what do I say now?” aspect of the business. The most difficult part for people is figuring out what do, say, and when to say it. If you can spend a little bit time and think through it, it’s usually an easier thing. You can be a sixteen-seed that beats the one-seed. You may not beat them long-term, but you may beat them in the individual aspect.
If you make a few great deals and some offers, you share that spotlight. You may be able to have some big bucks draft you as a funding partner, as a joint venture partner. There’s so much opportunity out there that if you’re not taking the action to make things happen, you’re only harming yourself. I was getting ready to get rocking and rolling, a video popped up from Will Smith talking about how 99% of people won’t do anything. People yell at him, “I want to be an actor, Will Smith.” He says, “Most people wanting to be dedicated to overcoming their mind games, being self disciplined in their mind to eat the right foods or to workout or not to eat or drink a lot of crazy stuff out there, if you want to accomplish your dreams of being an actor or an athlete, you have to put the work in on a daily basis. You can’t give up. You’ve got to have a sole focus of mind. You’ve got to have sole purpose to get things done.”
Everything else, if you want to accomplish you dream, putting in the sidelines is less. Many people, many entrepreneurs, the sidelines come in and overcome their dream goals or what they want to accomplish. They let all that noise block out their inner voice talking about “You can do it.” I don’t know what it is, but if you look back and you see little kids playing, they’re hitting the home runs. They’re winning the game-winning shots. They’re throwing the winning touchdown. They’re doing all these amazing things as kids because they have this great imagination, and nobody has told them that they can’t. As adults, we lose that ability to say yes or we start listening to the crowd, we start listening to the no’s. We start listening to this stinking thinking for people out there and it causes us to stop focusing on things. It causes us to stop chasing our dreams.
One of two things that is powerful is finding an image, find something that’s valuable to you. Even if you’re sitting there for a second, I want you to close your eyes and I want you to think of what success looks like to you. What does it look like? Think about it. I have to thank Michelle Young for talking about this. Michelle has been on before and is an amazing life coach and a dear friend of Steph and me, and Aaron Young, her husband who’s also a family. Think about what success looks like. If you had an ideal day, what would that look like? What would you do when you wake up in the morning? What would your activities be? Would it be getting up to get a coffee? Would it be getting up and going to the gym? Would it be getting up walking outside on your verandah, feeling the wind against your face, against your robe, your shirt, or your night gown?
What do you see? Do you see an apartment complex? Do you see a big city? Do you see the ocean? Do you see the mountains? Do you see the forest? What do you hear? Think about that. Are there wind chimes? Is your dog doing his or her business? Are there cars? Is there a mockingbird or the robin? Is there the sway of the trees and the wind? What do you hear? is it the sound of the ocean? The beach crashing? What does your day look like? Where are you living? What size is the house? What kind of car do you drive? Think about these things. These are the images of success. These are the images of what you want your to be.
My junior high and high school basketball coach, Marty Bell, used to tell us to do that. We would sit there before a game when we were playing basketball in high school and talked about dreaming, thinking about that, hitting those shots, sinking those free throws. That was a big thing I always focused on because I was never a good free throw shooter. I could rebound. Feel about the form. What does that form look like for your life? What does that success look like for you out there? Whatever that success is, you should immediately write it down or immediately go find a photo of something that you can use as well where you can see it every day, in your car, in your house, or in the TV, or the fridge, the bathroom, or by your bed.
That type of imaging will help you reprogram your mind. It’ll help you stay focused on things. It will help you accomplish bigger things and be direct and dedicated to that end game and I guarantee it. When you listen to interviews, when you listen to discussions with the players and the coaches after the winning games or the winning team this year from the different rounds, you’ll see that the players, the coaches, they saw it going in. I guess many of them walked in like Buffalo, walked into that stadium and knew they could play. They knew they could beat Arizona. They knew ahead of time.
They won that game before the first shot was ever thrown up, before that first tip ball, before the first rebound, before that first light, before that dunk, before that pass for the first dribble. They knew they could play with those guys and they knew they could win. They did their job. They knew that they’d be up. If you listened to the coach before halftime, he was upset because they had eight turnovers in the first half. They had been up by ten at the half versus two. How many turnovers they had in the second half? They had one turnover in the second half to beat their foe. They kicked Arizona’s ass. I’m an Arizona fan. They kicked ass because they visualized it.
Things start appearing when you’re planning. Steph and I are planning a trip to Hawaii. We haven’t gone to Hawaii for two years. We’re going out soon and I told her, “Just book it. Let’s schedule. Let’s go and get out of here. It’s not going to cost us that much. Let’s go ahead and do it. Let’s take the time away and visualize it.” Sure enough, what starts popping up are Hawaii images like I was getting on my computer and there’s an image of a natural-born crater that has been used by the military there from bombing. I’m walking into our grocery store and the lady in front of me is wearing a Mama’s Fish House shirt.
It’s one of the most amazing restaurants in all of the world as far as food. If you start chasing the right dreams that are set in place for you and doing the things that you should be doing, those things will start appearing. Those things will start showing up in your life as a sign, “You’re on the right track.” You don’t have to be a man of God or have big faith, but I’m a big believer that if I’m doing the right things, God will provide. God helps those who help themselves. I’m not being religious here. That’s my personal faith that if I’m doing the right things, God will put the things in my path to help me accomplish that because those are reminders, those signs, and I’ve seen those signs and stuff like that. I guarantee you will too. Sometimes it’s conversations you have with people.
When I went to Traffic & Conversion, Steph and I were talking about that. We always seem to adjust our business model. We tweak things, we add things. One of the biggest things we will be tweaking is somebody had an idea, they ran an idea, and it looks like it’s going to be a profitable idea. It’s going to be a great thing not only for us, but also for students because that’s ultimately what our goal is. Our goal is not to make money for ourselves. Our goal is to help our students make money. I have a civic-minded leadership that if we can make those around us successful, we naturally will rise with the tide as well.
I hope you guys enjoyed this. If there’s something that I can help you out with, do it. If you have a goal, something you want to accomplish, a trip you want to go or something, write it down, state it. Get your spouse and get your family involved. If your family has a dream, if your spouse is not the most encouraging person, but they have a goal they want to accomplish, find out what that goal is and make it a joint goal to help them get those things. If you help them accomplish something or see something big, they can help you too. Maybe it’s a getaway. Maybe it’s something you can help build that dream and test either both of you in using the business to accomplish that.
I hope this has been helpful. Visualize your success. Go out and visualize yourselves making that basket, making the game-winning shot, buying that asset that’s paying you $500 a month or making $50,000 a year or $100,000 in the note business, or making $10,000 a month on residual income coming off your performance. Whatever that goal is, you can reach it. I don’t care who you are, I don’t care what bullshit you tell yourself, what you’ve been through, divorce, bankruptcy, foreclosure. You can go out and accomplish amazing things if you set your mind to it, if you work on it on a daily basis, on a weekly basis. Don’t give up on your dreams. Don’t give up on the actions of what you can do. Don’t give up. Don’t give up and quit trying.
Sometimes you’ve got to take a job. Sometimes you have to take a step back from your dreams to regroup and re-attack it. You can do whatever you want to do. You just have to get busy doing it. Don’t give up. Go out and make something happen and I guarantee, if you keep failing forward, keep working towards your goal, eventually you will look back in three months, six months, or a year and say, “I’ve come a long way in the last year.” That’s when you know that you’re on your way to the top. Go out and make something happen and have a great day. We wish you the best and Steph and I look forward to seeing you at the top.