What I’ve Learned During Three Years Clubbing

Hello Folks, 

It’s our Estate Agent Content Club’s third birthday this month. 

We’ve got a few promotional things planned and have upped our charitable donations in September. 

But today, I wanted to share with you ten things I’ve learned from taking the club from six members receiving a weekly article, to serving on average 120 estate agencies a month with a wide range of content marketing services. 

Where we were 

When I had the idea for the EACC on a beach in Turkey, I was skint. 

The family holiday we were having was paid for on a credit card that was under more strain than a Premier League manager on a losing run. 

But things changed. Mainly because I did.  

Here’s what I learned that might help you. It’s in no particular order, but I feel all the points matter. 

  1. Don’t fear failure. I originally had the idea for a membership-based marketing service for estate agents back in 2015 when I was doing PR for agents. Fear of f’cking up held me back. Don’t fear failure; learn to love it.  
  1. Be ruthless with your time. I quickly learned to say ‘no’ a lot more. I now use a range of distraction tools and software to help me guard my time, but the key is learning to be disciplined around what you do. 
  1. Don’t deal with cheapskates. When I started the club, I let anyone join. And it was the agents who were buying the least and haggling constantly about prices that took up most of my time. After six months, I realised this was an issue, so we stopped dealing with this end of the market. This was a rule we successfully introduced to my removals business back in the early 2000s – it works on so many levels. 
  1. It’s an inside-out job. As I’ve alluded to earlier in this article, my fortunes changed because I did. Giving up booze on 2 April 2018 was the biggest (and best) thing I’ve ever done. Too many people think a guru, a training course, or a piece of software will change everything for them; I believe most of the answers you seek already lie within a person. 
  1. Get a coach/mentor. I got a coach in early 2020. I couldn’t really afford it at the time but thought it would make a difference that would reap dividends. It did. I still have a coach. I am also lucky enough to pick two of the brightest minds in estate agency on a regular basis. Seek people smarter than you to learn from. 
  1. Be more direct. This is something I’ve only got to grips with in the past year or so. It links to lesson number 2. I am naturally shy and hated asking for a sale/decision on something (most likely due to being scared of rejection). But now, I’m like, ‘do you want it or not?’ or ‘can you do this or not?’ (in more polite language, obviously). 
  1. Invest. I see so many agents and businesses stuck or going backwards because they don’t invest in themselves or their businesses. My life changed when I invested in getting a coach and started spending more money (especially in lockdown) on marketing than my rivals did. We’re now ploughing five figures into a bespoke software system that we believe will be what moves us on to the next level.  
  1. Treat yourself. When you work hard (there’s no escaping that part), make sure you reward yourself. I went 18 months just working like a mule without doing anything too exciting outside of work. I was feeling jaded, to be honest. My coach told me to treat myself to something. I’m not into cars, watches, or anything material, but I did want to experience more. Now we have more family breaks, hospitality at our local football club and other experience-based treats.  
  1. Protect your energy. This has echoes of my point about swerving cheapskates. Be careful who you share your energy with. When you come away from someone feeling a negative vibe, try to avoid them in the future. This can obviously be tricky, but remember, your energy is finite and needs to be expended wisely.  
  1. Life’s a team sport. I used to try to do everything on my own. It was stressing me out, and the quality of my work was suffering. Getting more people to join our team (a proofreader, reporters, designers, all-action assistants) has made a HUGE difference. Simply having a bigger brain pool is a massive plus, but also feeling part of a group of like-minded people is inspiring. I love the guys I work with. I can see our company values of Creativity – Community – Value in all of them, and we try our best to look after everyone.  

It’s been a brilliantly hectic three years, and I know the club can grow, and we can build on what we’ve achieved. 

Thanks to my family, our team, our clients, many of whom have become good friends, and everyone who has helped us get to this point.  

And thank you for taking the time to read this. I hope you found at least one point that helps.