Matthew Miller has been working with us for the past two years. He's a solo real estate agent and property manager in Jacksonville, Florida. Roughly half of his income comes from property management and the other half from selling homes. He hired us to help him get more listings and buyers from his existing list (lots of tenants who want to buy, too) with a consistent 36-touch marketing plan. "Your marketing plan helped me nearly double my business."
A quick thank you to Matthew...
Real Estate Agents! Did you like this interview? Matt was not paid and did this for free. If you know someone moving to Jacksonville, or who needs to sell their home there, he would appreciate your referral (and will make sure you get paid). You can call him directly at 904.574.1958 or email him at email@example.com.
Here are examples of Matt's marketing you can review:
Here are the timestamps of the interview so you can jump to want you like:
0:00 - Intro
1:41 Meet Matthew
2:30 - What did you do before Vyral?
3:51 - How much money do you make now?
4:02 - About Matthew's Work
6:02 - How Matthew found Vyral
8:33 - Why do you prefer videos?
9:50 - How did you find your audience?
11:32 - What are your most popular topics?
13:21 - How does this generate leads for you?
14:55 - How did you build your email list?
15:50 - Do you ever cold-call?
17:34 - How did you get comfortable spending money?
20:48 - How videos attract business
24:02 - Why did you stick with Vyral?
26:41 - How Matthew got into Real Estate
29:36 - Matthew's Social Media(s)
30:19 - Outro
Here's is the edited transcript so you can read the entire interview:
Frank: Hi, I'm Frank with Vyral Marketing. Matthew here is a client of ours in Jacksonville, Florida. Matthew is intentionally a solo agent. He doesn't have much interest in growing a team because he's unique. He got into the property management business and has a nice source of income managing rental properties. But he also realized that if you're going to do that, maybe he might as well sell real estate. So, he hired us to make his job easier, and instead of having to go out and find business, we do that for him. You're the pest; you want to be the guest.
He enjoys videos. He ran a podcast for quite some time. He wanted to get out of video and wanted to publish—publish enough to get meetings with people—and has been a client for quite some time. A couple of years, in fact. I'm going to spend some time here with Matthew to talk about how he's using the 36 Touch video marketing system to get listings and get business with a unique angle of how he's merging his listing and buyer-side business with his property management business.
On a side note, I think the United States is the only country where a brokerage doesn't do property management. It's like a totally separate thing here. In most other countries, property management comes with the brokerage. But in America, unfortunately—and I hate saying this, but I think we all probably agree—is on the road to serfdom in many respects as we're becoming a renter nation. First-time home buying is drying up, and there are more and more people who need to rent, so the demand for property managers will be going up, Matthew. Do you agree with me on that?
Matthew: Yes, I do.
Frank: But if you're looking to make a living in real estate, this might be something you want to look into—having a property management division and figuring out how you can finesse that into listings and buyers for you. So, Matthew, thank you so much for being here today. I appreciate it.
Matthew: Pleasure to be here, Frank. I appreciate you having me on, and hopefully, I can help someone join Vyral or help their business grow. I have been doing this for 10, 11, 12 years now. Somewhere in that ballpark. The years fly by, but every year, I've tried to add something to my arsenal in marketing, and Vyral was probably the most important thing I've ever added because not only did it obviously allow me to reach more people. But it also took time away from making my own videos or trying to be my own marketing agency, which I'm clearly not because I wouldn't be doing enough business if that was the case. So, Vyral was a huge help to me, and I'm excited to share my story.
Frank: Let me ask you the cut-to-the-chase question. Financially, what was your business before Vyral, and what is your business now?
Matthew: That’s a somewhat loaded question. There was a point in my life when I coached two high school sports, and I was working six-, seven-hour days and then coaching because I enjoyed it. But, at the same time, there was also a point when I thought, Man, I need to grow up and make some more money and take my business a little more seriously.
That obviously happened—not with Vyral but prior to that. I just decided to go full-time and not coach anymore, which I still love. It was just a lot of time, a big-time commitment, especially coaching high school kids with our schools getting out at two o'clock.
Speaker 1: Two o'clock?
Matthew: Yes. I could work from 7 a.m. to 1:30, and then I was gone for the rest of the day. So, it didn't really work out well schedule-wise, but there was a time when I decided, hey, I’ve got to take this to a little more legitimacy, grow the business, find a way to employ more people, and obviously, use Vyral or other technologies in the business to ramp it up a bit and follow the J-curve. Once you get going, you really get going.
Frank: How much more money are you making now that you put this in place along with other things than what you were making before?
Matthew: Probably close to double. Obviously, it's hard to track the property management piece, so that is the one thing that's a little bit weird because I do a lot of things for customers on property management with videos. We'll break down fees, we'll answer the question, "Hey, what happens in this situation?" A lot of marketing is geared towards property management as well. But at the same time, my property management clients see that, and they see how much work I'm putting in on the property management side. So, when it comes time to sell that home, there's a good chance...
Frank: The landlords contact you to sell it.
Matthew: The landlords contact me, and I had developed a relationship with those landlords for three, four, five, six years sometimes, so I have a very good relationship with them. Property management is typically a much longer sales process and relationship than your average deal that may last for 30 or 45 days. You're really in a relationship for 45 days on a sale. Once the sale is done, you might fall in love with them a couple of times, and once every three or four months, you're calling them, sending them emails, doing whatever... You're staying in touch, but it's not a constant relationship like property management.
So, I really get to become close to a lot of my clients. I receive the first call they make when it comes to anything real estate-related because I've made myself very accessible as far as answering questions they may have when it comes to sales, when it comes to buying another rental, when it comes to, "Hey, I'm going to sell this one; do a 1031 exchange, and go buy two more."
Frank: Great video topics.
Matthew: Yeah, right? There's a lot of that stuff that happens throughout the process, and even when I started, it blew my mind. Of course, people were asking me all these questions, and when I was younger, I didn't know all the answers. So, I learned a lot, and now I can talk a lot.
Frank: So, you made the decision to work more, you put Vyral in place, you put some other things in place, and you've doubled your business since you started with us?
Matthew: Yeah, 100 percent.
Frank: That's awesome, dude. Congratulations. Now take me back to the decision when you realized you had to get some type of 36 Touch in place, whether it was you who was going to do it or you were going to hire somebody—when you realized the problem and the pain you were in and thought, I’ve got to put some resources and do a 36 Touch program. Tell me about that point in your business.
Matthew: When I started producing my own videos, what I realized was that I could produce a classic Vyral video that’s one to five minutes long, depending on the topic. Somewhere in that ballpark. The amount of work that goes into producing that video when you're a novice video editor...
Frank: A lot.
Matthew: It might be five, six hours... It can take half your day to do that, especially if you’re not as quick as someone on your staff.
Frank: Your mind has to be slow.
Matthew: Yes, and mine is not. I move at a very fast pace, and I probably don’t pay as much attention to detail as other people because I'm in sales, so that's pretty normal. But I needed a way to have somebody working on that for me, and Vyral came in because one of our agents was also using Vyral, and I saw his success with it, and I thought, You know, the cost is a little higher than I was looking for at the time...
Frank: Especially for a solo agent.
Matthew: Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah. As a solo agent, I thought, I’ve got to do something. I'll tell you what I did. First, I started shooting my own videos. Next was adding BombBomb. Sorry to mention another company that...
Frank: No, we love BombBomb. There's another option, Loom.
Matthew: Yeah, there are a couple of them.
Frank: But this whole video trend—I believe that Dubb I is one of the platforms—is huge. It’s one-to-one video communications.
Matthew: Yes, it’s awesome.
Frank: Think of Vyral more as a one-to-many.
Matthew: Correct. They serve two completely different points for me. They're not the same thing at all. I like to use BombBomb because, as you said, there’s a lot of the one-to-one. BombBomb has the one-to-many, but I don't think that is as good as the one-to-one contact. If I am sending an email to Frank about his current deal and it’s six in the morning, but he's on the West Coast, he might get it when he wakes up, but I don't have time for a 15-minute conversation at one in the afternoon. So it's about efficiency for me, and then Vyral came forward, and then I even did another selling video.
Frank: Why did you want to do video? Why did you even go down this path of wanting to get a 36 Touch?
Matthew: Because I don't like the type.
Frank: Hold on. Now I'm hiring Vyral, not video. Why did you even know you needed to put in place a Touch program in the first place?
Matthew: I'm a marketing guy by trade. So, with the advent of social media, if you scroll down your social media feed, what do you see? You don't see pictures anymore really. It's mostly video. I just thought, If you're not doing video, you're losing. For a lot of people, it's very uncomfortable to get on video and talk and know that you're sending it out to friends, family, and people you've never met before. What if I look funny? What if I have a zit on my face or whatever? But guess what? All those things happen in real conversation anyway.
You might be having a one-on-one conversation with somebody regardless and have something wrong with your hair, your eye, your beard, or whatever. But you’ve just got to get on video. I think that's content for people, and content creation is probably the key term for me, and it was a good way to do it.
Frank: How did you come up with your topics? Who is the audience you were speaking to with your first topics? Was it just the landlords you were targeting?
Matthew: Yes. But I also did a lot of property management stuff because at that point, obviously, that was a larger portion of my business. What I realized as I dealt with buyers and sellers, especially as we've gone through these last two years, is that I’ve gotten more business off of that, partly because our market is crazy hot.
But at the same time, it was more that I had to touch people in a different way. You can send a text message, an email, or whatever, but if you see somebody's video, it's a lot easier to watch a video than it is to read an email for the average human. I'm convinced of that. Maybe that's just pure laziness...
Frank: Or reading comprehension.
Matthew: Yup. It could be that.
Frank: That's the reason.
Matthew: That's the reason why. It's very easy to talk to people, especially for me because I talk a lot, and that's probably one of my downfalls. I talk about my personal life. I just talk too much. I don't shut up. But at the same time, in business, people do want to talk to somebody who knows what they're doing and is confident in what they're selling and confident in their services. That comes through in video, but that doesn't ever come through in an email or a text message or anything like that.
That doesn't come in a text or email, but it definitely comes through in video. That's why video is effective, and I’m talking about a 36-point touch system and all those things encompassed with video. I still do all the other things, too, but video is probably the most important thing that I do.
Frank: What are your most popular topics? Give us some examples of what you’ve sent out.
Matthew: It’s funny—my most-watched video, I believe, was not about real estate at all. It was the top five restaurants in Jacksonville that I liked. There are only so many real estate topics you can talk about in video before you exhaust people, but also, for me, I’m thinking, Hey, I'm selling the city of Jacksonville. I'm selling certain areas of Jacksonville.
So, I've done that. I also did a research project, of all things, on the topic, “Does the success of a professional sports team have anything to do with the morale of the city?" I'm a Jaguars fan, unfortunately. See the tile behind me? So, in 2018, the Jaguars played for the AFC Championship, and the city was buzzing. Everybody was positive, everybody was going out to eat that weekend. We go to the Jaguars game, and we're talking about it because the team is good, but then they suck, and everybody's just doom and gloom on Monday.
So, I was trying to figure out if there was any kind of economic gain. There's not. We researched it. Not a lot. But that was a really watched video because it tied in everybody who lives in this community, not just those who were looking to buy or sell a home at the time.
I just did one about five free things you can do in Jacksonville on Memorial Day. I had a really, really good reaction from that one. So, it's not always real estate topics. It's things about where you live. It's your neighborhood specifically. It's about where it’s best to work out and why. Just talking about the community in general, I think, is the biggest overarching thing that I always do.
Frank: How does this generate leads for you?
Matthew: Real simple: People call. People call, people text, people reach out on social media. "Hey, Matt. Saw your video. Been thinking about buying a house. Been thinking about selling my house. I had a quick question for you." Sometimes, I might even respond with a video that I already produced.
Frank: That's nice, isn't it?
Matthew: It's nice. Yeah. Evergreen content is a big thing too. If people aren't familiar with evergreen content, a perfect example is how to do a homestead exemption. I just respond and send them a link to my YouTube video in which I walk them step-by-step through the process of how to do a homestead exemption. I don't have to do any work, but I already have exactly what the client's looking for.
That is huge. At the same time, you will get people who are outside of my sphere of influence. For example, we all have Facebook friends. You might have 4,000 friends but only know 500 of them. But there are people among those 4,000 who will see posts on there, although as the algorithms have changed on social media, a little more work is required to get that done. We're still going through some of those changes. I feel like social media changes every four months in terms of who sees my videos, so I've had to change some things. I have a big email list too. That email list is very important to me.
Frank: How did you build it?
Matthew: Over the years, every person who contacts me goes into a database. I have two separate databases. Every single person goes into the one I use for Vyral, even tenants looking to rent a home. I have had tenants who have reached out to me—tenants I had never met and who had never rented from me.
They may reach out a year later and say, "Hey, Matt." I might not know their name at the time, but they've been getting my videos for the last two years. So, they know me already. I don't know who they are, but they already know me, and they'll reach out and say, "Hey, I thought about buying a house. I'm military, I got a VA loan. You just did a video on VA loans. Can you help me?" I don't even know they're watching it, honestly.
Frank: Do you have to do a lot of cold calling?
Frank: You do zero cold calling?
Matthew: Zero. I do none.
Frank: Can you talk a little bit about that? You know agents. They're out there just door knocking, facing the rejection, the chasing. It just ruins your emotional state. You’ve got to be crazy to go out there and just...
Matthew: It's exhausting to me, number one.
Frank: It is exhausting.
Matthew: The guy on the other side of the wall, right behind this wall, is a huge cold caller, and we have built our businesses, and he's also a Vyral client by the way. So he does cold calling as well as...
Frank: I'm not saying it doesn't work. I’m just saying it's painful.
Matthew: No, no, no. It doesn't work. My first job was in corporate America when I just came out of college, and I was required to make, at minimum, 50 phone calls a day. There was a good chance that 49 of those went absolutely nowhere, and I was told to stick it where the sun don't shine or whatever. That was demoralizing as a human. I couldn't do that every day. I'm a positive person, and I didn't like the rejection every day that you get through that.
There are certain people who can do that. I'm not one of them, so I had to figure out different ways to be successful. Video has been a huge part of that because I prefer not to cold call. What I do instead is a ton of follow-up, and I follow up with video. I follow up with a text message with a video link in it. I do a lot of that stuff, but cold calling is just something I prefer not to do. If I was ever going to employ cold calling, I'd probably hire a virtual assistant.
Frank: How did you get comfortable spending money on marketing? It's terrifying when you're a solo agent. Talk to me about that.
Matthew: At one point, it was very little, so I started doing my own, and then I hired a small company out of Orlando, and I went down there and filmed...
Frank: Like a video production and editing?
Matthew: Yeah. It was one day. I drove down there. They were super nice and made some really good videos for me. We did scripts and had it all set up. But, honestly, scripted video, to me, just comes off as blah. It just doesn't come off as genuine, so I didn't think that it was very good. I got some compliments on the video but not necessarily on the content. They were like, "Oh, I saw your videos. That's so cool." This was seven years ago. So, I was doing video pretty early on.
A lot of people say they'll do video. But are they consistent about it? That's probably the biggest key. That's one thing I really like about Vyral, on a side note, is the fact that there is an event on my calendar every week that keeps me accountable to ensure that I do my marketing. Marketing as a solo agent, well, it seems like you're spinning your wheels to a certain point. It's not one of the most important things you can do. If you're talking about an investment in your business, I looked at Vyral, and if you don't mind me saying so, my cost...
Frank: Talk about it. I want to hear about the money.
Matthew: When I first signed up, my cost for Vyral was about $5,500 or $6,500 for the whole year. At the end of the day, that's one deal, one house. If you can't afford to spend money on marketing and just act like you're going to get one more house, are you even in the business? That doesn't make any sense to me.
As a marketing person, in general, I see that. There's a reason why billboards on the highway still work. There's a reason why bus benches still work. People see them, and the more they see you, the more often they're going to like you, trust you, and maybe buy from you. Who knows? But you have to take that chance.
I had that realization after a friend through coaching told me that he and his wife were looking to purchase their first home. He had reached out because he saw a video about first-time home buyers. He was a fringe Facebook friend as well. Well, that deal turned into four. That one deal off of that one video that came from Vyral turned into four deals because I also sold his parents a house, bought his parents a new house, and sold his brother a house. Four deals.
Frank: Wow. That’s great.
Matthew: It's awesome. But at the same time, if I didn't do that video, would I have ever had that opportunity? Probably not.
Frank: How did you get comfortable making videos? You got comfortable spending money first as a solo agent, and then you got comfortable making video.
Matthew: Yup. Got to spend money to make money.
Frank: How did you get comfortable getting on video and integrating it into every part of your business? I'm guessing it just makes your job easier.
Matthew: It does, 100 percent.
Frank: What's the whole benefit here? Obviously, you doubled your business, but talk to me about attracting business, not chasing business, and how this allows you to do that.
Matthew: Correct. That is the key word: attraction. Anyone in the world who's going to buy a product or service is typically attracted to that product or service. When you're going to buy a new car, what's the first thing you say? "Oh, man. It looks so good. Look! That car looks sweet." It's an attraction. It's a real feeling inside your body that you are attracted to that F-150 or that Porsche convertible, or whatever vehicle. It might be a Kia Soul. I don't know. Whatever it is, you're attracted to it, and there could be reasons why.
You're attracted by the price, you're attracted by the appearance, you're attracted by the convenience. There are a lot of other things like that. So I always thought, I don't want to chase business, but I do want to attract people. I think the number-one thing that a lot of agents say is, "I don't like my clients. They're such a pain in the butt. They're running me ragged. They just don't have any respect for my time.” Yada, yada, yada.
Well, you fix that by finding people that like you, which is my biggest point. Work with people you want to work with. And you can do that through video by being genuine. That brings us back to the scripted video conversation and the fact that scripted video doesn't come off as genuine. It's scripted. It sounds like an informercial. But it doesn’t have to. When I first started doing video, I was a little clunky, for sure. I was clunky, I was slow, I stepped over my words, I was nervous—a lot of those things. I'm sure that many of those first videos aren't very good compared to what I do now. I'm sure they are.
I haven't gone back and watched many of them, but really, I don't care. I'd rather have the content there for people to see and to see me as a real human. If I have a real conversation at Chili's and I'm talking to Frank about buying a house, there is a good chance that I will stutter and stumble over my words. I probably do those things in a real conversation. But whether I'm having a real conversation with somebody or doing a video and stumble over my words, I don't necessarily stop and restart.
So, they're getting the genuine person, and that person who is buying, selling, or looking at property management think, He is real and genuine. I think that is probably the number one thing that, with video, I'm able to show that I would never be able to show unless I had 2,000 people in the same room with me, which is never going to happen. But at the same time, I can at least show who I am, what I do, and the mistakes that I make. I'm not perfect; we all make mistakes. But I'll admit to them, which allows me to be genuine.
Frank: Why are you still at Vyral? Why haven't you quit, canceled, hired someone else? Why are you still with us, man?
Matthew: Because I've had success. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. It's a pretty simple concept, and I think that Vyral, at the same time, has been just so quintessential to my business and the success that I've had that it would just be hard to walk away. That’s because, one, I love the staff, like Kaylee and Drew back in the day when he first started. I love all those people. They're awesome. They're truthful with you. They're real with you. You get to know them, and there's a relationship that's built.
Another thing about video is that every week, because I see Kaylee on a video, I now know Kaylee. We have a relationship. We joke around. It's fun. We have a good time with it. So, there's that and the fact that you can't stop doing video because it's only getting worse. Video is the only thing you should be doing. If you're doing print advertising, other than maybe some mailers or whatever, or if you're doing a graphic design on social media, people are going to scroll.
Frank: Not very social.
Matthew: No. Literally, it's called social media. But what is the most social of all the social forms?
Frank: Well, it could be metaverse surfing.
Matthew: Talking to people.
Frank: Talking to people.
Matthew: If I can get a video out there about how to buy a property or how to sell property in this market, I'm all in. I'm not getting one personally, but if you do, I'll get it in there somehow. But, yeah, it is the most important thing to be social and to see people interact. That is social. To me, there’s nothing social about social media and a picture. It's just a post, which is different.
Frank: I'm thinking of a headline for this interview: “How Matthew Doubled His Business in Real Estate Without Any Cold Calling While Actually Enjoying His Job.” It sounds like you enjoy your job.
Matthew: I do, most days.
Frank: Most days.
Matthew: We all have...
Frank: But at least you enjoy the process of getting clients.
Frank: For a lot of people, the process of getting clients is terrible.
Matthew: Exhausting, frustrating. It's the number-one reason why people leave our business.
Frank: But you have a way of getting clients that's not exhausting and frustrating.
Frank: I want to hear the method. Sum up the method of how you found a way to get customers that is not terrible.
Matthew: I always tell the story when people ask me how I got into real estate about how my grandfather was the only salesperson in my family. My family members were mostly coaches, teachers, things like that. My mom had a small business, but it wasn't in sales per se. Back in the day, my grandfather handled appliance sales for—I'm going to show his age, obviously—Montgomery Ward. When I was in college, my grandfather passed away.
I remember going up to his house about an hour away from my home and staying overnight because I was playing summer baseball up in South Bend, Indiana, which is where I'm from. We got to talking. I was the only kid who went into business out of all the grandkids. Only one out of eight went into business. Everybody else went to teaching or arts or chemistry or whatever. So, I was the only one who chose business, and he asked me why.
I said, "I like talking to people. I like helping people." That was the key, and it triggered something within him. By the way, he passed away about a week and a half after this conversation, which was awesome and really weird at the same time. But the one thing I took away from that is that he said he was a very successful salesperson. If you were an appliance salesman at Montgomery Ward back in the day, it was a pretty lucrative job because everybody was buying appliances for their new homes after World War II. Everybody because everybody was buying homes. It was a boom.
He was the number-one appliance salesman for Montgomery Ward in the country for three years running. Now, where that ties into it our discussion is that he said, "The first thing you have to do before you want to sell anything is you have to make that person trust you." I don't want to sound manipulative when I say that, but if that person doesn't trust the person they're buying from, there's a good chance that deal's never going to happen. I think that video, in summarizing my answer to your question, is the first step to doing that today.
Frank: Matthew, you nailed it. That's the sales process: trust, need, help, and hurry.
Frank: You have to develop trust, you have to identify needs, you have to show how you could help them, and then you move into a decision.
Frank: So, you've embraced the correct funnel for the sales process, which helps you attract, not chase.
Frank: So many people forget trust and need, and they just go right out with help, help, help, help, help.
Matthew: Help, help, help, help, help, or they see dollar signs. One of the two. We call that commission breath, or whatever you want to call it. But if you truly want to help people and garner trust from them, you’ve got to be real, you’ve got to be genuine, you’ve got to really care about that person, and it has to show somehow. But it doesn't show up in an email, it doesn't show up in a text message, it doesn't show up in a letter. It doesn't show up in any of those things, but it does in video.
Frank: Matthew, what's your video blog? Where can people go check out your video blog with us and subscribe to your newsletter?
Matthew: It's www.mattymillerrealestate.com. I have every video on there: buying, selling, property management. On the tenant side, I even do videos for tenants like how to make a tenant go from tenant to buyer. There are all sorts of ways that you can be a solo agent in property management and turn it into a lucrative business. It's been a fun ride. It's taken me a long time to get there, but without video, it would never have been possible, to be perfectly honest, nor would it have been possible without Vyral. It's been great.
Frank: Thanks, man. I appreciate that.
Frank: I want to thank all of you for watching. When you go to our website, you can download any of our workshops and our video marketing plan, and you can book a free strategy call. You're a client, so get on a call with us. Let's make sure you're executing the full program, and if you're a prospect, thinking about giving us money to help you, there's a 90-day money-back guarantee. We stand behind our marketing, and you can see the pricing and what we do. We can do the same for you that we're doing for Matthew. So, Matthew, thank you so much for your time today, man. I appreciate it.
Matthew: No problem, Frank. Appreciate it.