2019 PM Grow Summit
April 17 – 19, 2019
Alex recently joined Jordan Muela on The Profitable Property Management podcast, and the discussion focused on preparing for the 2019 PM Grow Summit, and how they’re helping their property management clients act less like operators and more like entrepreneurs.
Other topics discussed include the sales and marketing outlook for the property management industry, and some new accounting standards that were recently introduced by NARPM.
2019 PM Grow Summit: An Intro
PM Grow began in 2016, when Alex and Jordan were looking at what was available for their clients in terms of education and growth. They learned that high-level property management entrepreneurs really didn’t have a graduate-level conference or resource that helped with growth and profit. NARPM has always done an incredible job helping property management companies manage their businesses. But, there was nothing that focused exclusively on growth, marketing, and profitability. So, PM Grow was born, and the third summit will happen April 17 – April 19, in Austin, Texas.
If you’re wondering whether you should attend, here’s how you self-qualify:
- If you’re an entrepreneur who is growing a property management company or preparing to grow, you should attend. You own a business that’s able to scale, and you want to learn how to do that.
- If you want to meet people just like you, with a passion for property management and a strong desire to make the industry better, smarter, and more service-oriented, you should attend.
2019 PM Grow Summit: Who Are We Excited to Hear?
When someone asks you how you attract new clients, is your default response to say “referrals?”
Sometimes, that response means you don’t have a formal marketing plan in place. Referrals can be a well-structured channel. That’s why Michael Maher is going to be an important speaker at this year’s conference.
If you’re in real estate, you have probably heard of Michael. He’s a trainer in the real estate industry, and he’s the most referred Realtor in America. He’s built this phenomenal network of referrals, and he has an interesting channel strategy. His program is structured and effective, and it got our attention right away. Check out Michael Maher if you’re not already familiar with him.
We’ve asked Michael to deliver a talk on how to think about referrals and how to put together a strong referral program. This is going to be an important guide to help you put everything together. We’re excited about this talk because no one in our industry is really doing what Michael does. No one is talking about referrals, so we’re introducing the structured strategy to property managers. It’s another innovation brought to you by PM Grow.
Another speaker who needs to be highlighted is Chris Clothier from Memphis Invest. He runs a turnkey operation and has been in business for a long time. He’s prolific in content creation and one of the best property management leaders when it comes to content marketing. He has an interesting model, and the way he uses data and platforms and partnerships to get the investor audience he wants is fascinating.
Chris will talk about what has worked for him, and here’s a preview: it’s more than a blog post. He’s hiring researchers to cold call investors and he’s really pushing his content. He’s on his own level, and this is a talk you won’t want to miss.
Chris will provide a playbook. If you think about content as being the fence around your property management company, or your moat, you’ll need to know how to build that. Property management is a local business. If you’re a top educator and people can recognize you from your content before they even call you to ask about your services, you’re going to win. If you have no content, you have no moat. That means you’ll have to fight your competition with bare knuckles on Google AdWords. It’s better to build your content and to be local. If you’re in Austin, you better be talking about Austin real estate.
A good marketing strategy is about more than just generating leads. It’s not transactional. It’s actually an extension of your values. Your marketing has to align with your customer and your business and your brand must add value. Do you just want to swipe a credit card and buy some leads or do you want to connect with your customers and talk about the journey you’re going to take them on?
That’s the difference content marketing can make. We cannot wait to hear Chris tell us more.
Danny Craig and Ray Hespen will be talking about data and trends in maintenance. For months, these professionals have been examining trends and patterns around maintenance and how it impacts profitability. We’re looking at it from both the perspective of efficiency for operations and a profit-based focus. You’ll get some interesting information from this session.
Financial Benchmarking and Standardizing Industry Reporting
Something exciting happened at the Broker Owner conference a few weeks ago, and that was the introduction of a new NARPM accounting standard. It’s being released as a series of four documents:
- Financial controls guide.
- Benchmark study.
- Metrics and definitions guide.
- Chart of accounts.
This can transform the property management industry. By standardizing how the books are structured while staying flexible with how you do business, we can radically simplify the ability to report on the financial stability of the industry.
If we want to be entrepreneurs instead of operators (and we do), this conversation is necessary.
These accounting standards matter the same way unit economics matter to your marketing plan. Once you understand your tolerance for customer acquisition costs, you can figure out what you are willing to pay in relation to the lifetime value of your customers. You have to build a marketing plan with intent instead of just throwing money at it. These accounting standards bring the same intention and the same strategic approach to the industry.
NARPM contracted with Profit Coach, Jordan’s company, to complete these standards. It’s a good example of how everyone in the industry has to be willing to get closer to the problems that we collectively share. Transforming the industry will have a huge payoff for everyone who leads it.
Take this lesson to your own property management company.
Jordan could have stopped at educating people about accounting standards. He went a little further and put together a lot of research. He validated that research and brought it to the largest property management association in the U.S. and offered to build something that would standardize performance benchmarks for everyone.
This establishes some massive authority.
You can do the same thing.
Customer Alignment: Same Customers, New Services
Are you solving the deepest needs of your clients?
This is an important question. When you can become more than one single service and transition into a more consultative role, you’re going to see a lot of validating results from your efforts.
A lot of us who start service companies are not marketers. We’re operators. We like to build the shoe, and we don’t like to market the shoe.
But, you need to provide an immersive service for your clients. It has to be holistic. At Fourandhalf, we want to be the single throat to choke. We are responsible for all the outcomes in your marketing campaigns, and there’s no hiding from the results. You need to do the same thing for your landlord and investor clients: take all the responsibility for their property’s growth and success.
Find the best way to service your client. Develop your perfect client profile. Then, service that client in multiple ways. Don’t just do the day-to-day property management. Build your CBUs – Complementary Business Units. You can advise your clients on their real estate portfolios. You can help them buy or sell or renovate. Identify the natural connections, and bring new services to your existing clients.
Are you interested in taking ownership for the outcomes you bring your clients, or do you just want to provide services?
It’s a high calling, and it’s not for everyone. But, if it provides you meaning and you want more than a transactional relationship with the people you serve, you need to go all in.
This relates to what Scott Fritz talks about when he suggests you provide a de-risking proposition for your customer. He’ll talk to us at PM Grow about tenant guarantees and other ways you can reduce a client’s risk. Your clients want a full guarantee, they don’t want a 10 percent guarantee.
Clients hire you for outcomes.
If there’s something in your formula that’s slowing your growth, make sure you’re addressing the right problem. Maybe you’re willing to spend $30,000 on marketing. That’s great, but if your conversion ratio is only 12 percent, and you’re not interested in fixing the conversion number, all of the flow that comes from turning on the marketing spigot will go right down the drain. Then, you’ll have lost a lot of money and you’ll feel discouraged about what marketing can actually do for you.
What Happens if I do Nothing? A Workshop on WHIN Methodology
Alex will lead a workshop at PM Grow on WHIN – What Happens if I Do Nothing?
The sales side of your organization is a critical aspect to growth. If you don’t know what motivates your prospect to move forward or remain interested in your company, you’ll have a hard time closing the deal. It should only take you a few seconds to figure out if your prospect is bleeding from the neck or just poking around to find out some information on what professional property management looks like.
Your first conversation could be a deal that won’t close for 10 years. If you don’t ask the right questions and you don’t position your discovery call to engage your listening skills, you’ll miss a lot of necessary information, and you’ll respond in ways that get you no closer to nurturing a lead or closing a deal.
Don’t be the business owner who is a master of talking. Don’t spend the first half hour with a prospect telling them how good you are. Don’t cut them off and finish their sentences.
In fact, stop talking.
You know your stuff, we get it. But, you have to be patient. This is what Alex and Jeremey Pound will discuss during this important sales-oriented workshop.
Preparing for the 2019 PM Grow Summit
By now, you’ve surely heard the buzz about PM Grow. If it sounds like something that you and your company are ready for, it’s not too late to get a ticket. You’ll be among the best in the industry, and you’ll be able to prepare your company for growth or continue growing it. It’s empowering.
Another session at PM Grow will surround EOS with Andy Moore. EOS is the Entrepreneurial Operating System. It was introduced in a book called Traction, and it’s a concept that may change the way you run your business. Alex has adopted it at Fourandhalf and Jordan is about a quarter of the way through the process at Lead Simple and Profit Coach. It’s worth checking out, and if you have time to read the book before the conference next month, do it.
EOS is a management framework. There are other management frameworks that may be as good or even better. But, if your company is growing out of the way things are currently done, you need a framework. You need structure and accountability and a protocol that the entire team embraces. It can have a radical impact on how decisions are made and work is produced.
What is the outcome you want from PM Grow?
We want to know. A lot of due diligence has been done choosing speakers and crafting agendas, but we know that each individual and every company comes here with a different set of goals and priorities. Tell us what your goals are. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Tell us why you’re coming and what you’re trying to get out of it.
Thanks for joining us, and we hope to see you in Austin in April.