Making A Smarter Agent Episode 10 – Ana Bozovic

READ THIS INTERVIEW OR LISTEN TO THE PODCAST CLICK HERE

They real estate agents welcome to making smarter agents. Your program to find out all tips and trends as told by the great ones in real estate. What’s a great one. Someone that’s able to make money and still keep their head on straight. Let’s face it. This is a tough business. We interview tough people seem to make it look easy.

Today we have Ana Bozovic who is joining us from Miami. Great agent has a unique way of marketing herself. Anna welcome.

Ana Bozovic: Thank you very much for having me. Excited to be here.

I’m so delighted to have you tell us. You know I want to dig into analytics and real into real estate what you do and you know based on the stuff that I’m always reading about you on social media. Very clear you’re an athlete and I want to see how that plays in and I want to point out just what you’re doing.But why don’t you just give us the nine hundred could you tell us a little bit about you and what you do.

Ana Bozovic: Absolutely. So I have a business and a website called analytics that Miami where I publish long term trend analysis on the market. This research is publicly available and it’s my own creation no one pays for it I don’t make money off of research it’s outcome agnostic truth and clarity brought to market. And I started publishing this research I tried making it available publicly about two years ago when I myself was a little bit frustrated with some of the obfuscation or opaqueness and the reports that are put up on major brokerages. And I thought that there should be some truth especially long term analysis put out there I always show 10 your charts markets move in trends it’s very important to see that.

I started publishing that about two years ago publicly. It’s been carried in the press quite a bit the last year it seems to be resonating and that’s been very effective in establishing my brand. If somebody who tells the truth and in terms of distinguishing me in the market which I think all salespeople need to find a way to make themselves unique and to add value and to stand out the marketplace. So it’s been very effective towards that end.

And you know I really know you as the analytics that you have this stuff every time I see you online and that’s why prior to talking on the show I’m surprised to hear that this great data is not sold and it’s available for free.

Ana Bozovic: Yeah.

 You talk to. Talk to me about that for a little bit. How long have you been doing this type of analytics and exactly what is your what is your focus.

Ana Bozovic:  Yeah. So I started making it publicly available about just about almost exactly two years ago when I work with clients and institutions and acquisition. I do more specific micro reports as part of the acquisition process. But about two years ago I started making macro quarterly and yearly reports in the market. I’m residential the reports that I put out there for the ready markets because that’s what most people in the press and most mainstream interest lies there especially Miami Beach has a lot of attention Miami Miami Beach there’s a lot of attention paid to the condo market for instance.

And so and that’s actually there’s a lot of confusion in the market. So I started publishing those quarterly yearly reports about about two years ago. And it seems to be resonating because people people appreciate the clarity.

And so my background is in math and physics I say in math and physics at Columbia.

So for me that’s just kind of how my brain works I see patterns. I look at data and long term data and I think it’s just important to present it that way. So to me it’s a natural thing to do. And I just try to making it publicly available about two years ago.

That’s that’s amazing yeah. We’re going to get into your education and all that in just a little bit. But you know analytics at the end buyer is not at least most the end buyers that I know aren’t necessarily so appreciative of the analytics they just want to get a good price based on that. I mean if that’s accurate. Who ends up being the lead source you on the real estate end? So you’ve got this great press that really read by the end consumer you’re getting a lot of leads from people in real estate.

Ana Bozovic: Both those I get I get a lot of finance guys and real estate guys people who appreciate the approach and that’s actually the type of client that I like to work with. So it works for me. I get people looking for various deals. They tend to believe me when I tell them something is a deal.

So it seems that it resonates with a specific type of client. It’s mostly men mostly in finance and real estate.

Terrific. And you know if we back up and this is your own you’re your own broker. You have your license with another entity.

Ana Bozovic: I have my license with someone but it’s somebody who is basically my mentor and I work closely with him. But it’s not a large shop or anything like that. He’s my mentor.He’s wonderful.

Sure. Sure. So you know are you doing anything else to try and make the phone ring as far as business generation. So if I was saying people who live there was podcasts are veiled and I end I give them different ideas on how to go about getting business.

Ana Bozovic:  So yeah. Well you can share some of them. Yeah yeah. I play on a very simple level what I do more of. Back in the day is it for instance or the condo market. People really want to know on a granular level local local level what sells in their building this is a very simple thing that used to get me action like when I was more interested in this type of client a few years ago. So you pick a building for instance and you do some digging some data digging you get e-mail addresses you can do it through voter registration records you can do it through Winston find who is in the building and you spend some time you can outsource this do it yourself but a bunch of hours gather e-mail addresses gather evidence whatever it is and then consistently put out a market report for that building where it shows what’s sold in the building what and what’s for sale because nobody really knows.

People go to see what’s for sale but they don’t even really know what’s going on they’re building. They hear misinformation from their neighbors from whatever. So even a simple thing like that where you consistently mail an email a building a real market report on that building not just some fluff like look at a pretty picture of me next to whatever but actual information that they didn’t have delivering value to those people sitting in that building that will get you actually almost nobody does that.

Yes.

That’s and we say send is it being sent by e-mail snail mail both. How are you?

Ana Bozovic: I’ve got I’m a fan of. I’m a fan of e-mail and I’m very glad my background in tech so I’m very good at getting people’s electricity mail is a little bit of a mystery to me I almost never physically email things I like e-mail I use MailChimp I segment my list very heavily I know who clicks and what little things what I’m not saying that snail mail is ineffective some people use it to effect it’s just it’s I’m not comfortable with it I prefer not to suggest that maybe you know yes some people want something like chicken some people like steak I get it that.

Yeah that’s fine.

But because as you know I think you get my weekly email I’m not nearly as detailed as yours but I’d like to give the gated community report in Palm Beach County mostly in Boca Raton and Delray and I know where I’m looking at my thing right now I’ve got from today’s e-mail so far 15 percent open rate my average often 18 percent yes it is an awesome you don’t need to be nice to me I’m sure it’s much higher which are open right now.

Ana Bozovic:  OK good question. So on the trip to open rates or the reality of it is the more specific your email is the higher the open rate. So because people care about stuff that’s relevant to them. So if I’m sending my highest open rates are always when they’re super specific. If you have like 600 e-mails going to people who rent and own a building and you put the building’s name in the subject line and you say X Y and the building quarterly update I’ve gotten as high as 70 percent on that. When I send out very like general ones which are like Miami quarterly market report and I send that to my entire list I usually get around 35 percent.

OK. I mean. OK great. So in other words you’re kicking my ass. Yeah I did that’s right. But you do have better frequency than I do.

Ana Bozovic:  You have better frequency than I do. Yeah.

And I it’s not a race. I think not though it’s a different word. Yeah we are. We have a great so that’s great. I know

Ana Bozovic: The tricks open rates and segmentation and specificity. The more specific you are to what’s important to the person receiving the message the more chance they have you have of them opening it.

Well for the for the agents in Tulsa Oklahoma that’s listening to them right now and they’re trying to you know dig in and they heard the term click baiting that says What’s the price to my home and I click it even if they don’t fill anything out. They may want to sell their home. Right. Do you do any click baiting is there anything that you do within your email to try and get some rain down here.

Ana Bozovic: Yeah. When I would do one specific buildings I would have something where I would say you know click here and then still in basic information that would take them to a form where they would put in their unit number and a basic description of the condition of their property. And then I would tell them my thoughts on the value. So I would do that but within within the context of that click baiting Look I think it’s really important to deliver value. You can’t just ask people to do things you have to give them something.

And so all those all those assets were in the context of an e-mail that delivered value to them and give them information they didn’t have before. So you have to establish yourself as the expert and someone they trust not just someone who’s trying to get business from them.

Wow this is fascinating stuff. It’s fascinating stuff. I want to ask a little bit more but not before I make a couple point particularly to the northern agents and other agents that are listening that are now in your I will be hosting a conference a real estate conference at St. Andrews Country Club in Boca Raton Florida on February 18 from 430 to 630 my two featured speakers one of them is Howard Lauber chairman of Douglas Elliman and the other one is Bruce Hall the CEO of Toll Brothers. So if you’re happening to be listening to this and we want to come to the event please do drop me a line.

There’s multiple ways reaching me which you are probably seeing there. So with that little commercial pitch I’ll get back to AMA here. And I talked about a cool event. And I’d love for you to come if you’re free. It should be a really good. It should be very interesting to hear what these guys have to say but it’s taking down a little bit. People talk about you like. Are you a routine person? I mean do you wake up in the morning at like 3:00 in the morning and meditate in front of a Buddha.

You eat just granola and then workout to take questions.

Ana Bozovic: That’s just great questions.

I’m not a morning person. I am. I am very much a nice person and most of my heavy thought work right where I put out reports and do creative or intellectual work that happens at night. And so I try to have discipline where I shut off my computer when I am and if I’m in bed before 2:00 that’s that. That’s a happy day. But I am I train a lot. That’s actually what keeps me sort of sane and with mental clarity. Mike Mike these are all different depending upon if I’m putting out I put out big reports quarterly and yearly.

So during those weeks I have we focused upon that but that depends upon the clients and what I’m doing so that that type of thing various of what keeps me sort of in check is training. I run the one the 200 meters and that’s just track them training for world championships at the end of this coming August and I cross train I had the good luck of being able to train with a group of professional boxer the trains that have the famous history gym in Miami Beach and I’m running partners with them my friend Daniel is Cadena who is like 14 in the world now he’s 18 now he has a big fight coming up February 28 so like like clockwork I’m at the track Tuesday Thursday 7 p.m. and like clockwork I do weights with them Monday Wednesday 7 p.m. and then I train with my own track coach Jerome who is a friend of Olympic.

He’s awesome I train with him Wednesday and Saturday mornings

You see the correlation between success and sport I’m really impressed and that’s it. And yet when success in life. I know you’re my tenth interview now and everyone seems to have something like a passion for the passion that supports military religious belief. But there seems to be something greater than themselves. Is that you?

Ana Bozovic:  Yeah. So. So I was going to have my whole life. The parallel that I see are in the mental focus winning at a high level in sports is the same mental focus very similar mental focus to winning in at a high level in business and life. You have to have clarity of thought. You have to have focus and you have to believe you have to believe that you’re going to do it because to win at the end everyone’s talented everyone’s top everyone’s dream. That last football 5 percent that’s all mental.

And it’s creating a reality that you want in your mind and believing it. And it’s the same thing in business. So if that same type of focus. And so for me those things overlapped and the better I do in sports the better I do in life and then also I mean I’m so busy like what I eat when I go and train. It’s not like going to the gym. It’s very intense a trained professional athlete. So it’s very competitive it’s very intense and there’s no phone I can’t look at my phone I can’t talk.

So it’s a total shut off that’s like my meditation. It’s a total mental shut off you end at one 100 percent and it’s really what keeps me give me mental clarity on top of the physical.

It’s amazing.

I I’ve always been a big believer in working out even when I was at my heaviest I think you know and I mentioned I may not get before I had bariatric surgery to lose 100 pounds amazing and I’m extremely sexy right now. I think it’s important that the whole ordeal. But on a serious note I do think yeah you know I’m thinking about writing a blog called cut the fat bloke the profit. I think that the chef much said about about that focus. Anyway I just want to say that I’ve oftentimes read about your opinions on things even some stuff that you’ve gotten into that’s been somewhat controversial and I’ve looked at it.

I haven’t I agree with you if you’re reading it but I said here’s a woman that’s really passionate about it and I’ve always liked you as a result of that I’ve always felt that that was that was great.

Ana Bozovic:  Thank you so much. Sports has always been a big part of my life and no one has to be crazy competitive just going out and doing something physical that gets your circulation going gets the happy chemicals going in the brain and you think if it’s a good it’s a good thing to do.

Sure. So talk to me about business.

How are sales? How was 2019? 2019 you know without knowing how far deep we actually go into your own business plans. But how many units did you sell or what. How would you what did you grade yourself on and can you share that with us.

Ana Bozovic:  Yeah. I’m going to put this thousand 2019 was really really good year for me. I got a lot more press coverage which was really helpful.

It started getting bigger projects and bigger clients which has always been been in my end goal. So it was a it was an excellent year to 2010 is also an awesome start. So I think it’s just a matter of consistency which is very important this business consistency of message consistency and brand and just building it day by day by day and the momentum build. So it’s been it’s been very good.

I think it’s great to work with them assistant. Yes and he’s amazing. You have wonderful their team.

But talk to me about the structure in Agent listening in on this thing. Terrific. You’ve got the vehicles to get the press. Yeah you’re smart and you’ve got that stuff. And now you’ve got the stuff coming and what happens to lead when they come through. Walk me through the process.

Ana Bozovic:  Yeah. Good question. I also emphasized the press and expose and all that stuff.

The key to that really is it’s not magic. The key to that is adding value that you have to add unique value and that’s what differentiates you in the marketplace to clients to the media to whatever it is. You can’t just you know it’s one thing that frustrates in this industry. People think it’s cute marketing and you just put your picture an extra house. Everybody does that. The world is full of pretty girls and handsome guys who can do that. You have to find a way to add value and differentiate yourself and that’s what gives you that longevity and that’s what that’s what builds momentum.

So I so when I when I get a lead I’m the first thing that I do when I get a lead is I try to evaluate how serious and high probability they are because I don’t have a large target that’s actually part of what I’m doing this year is adding people and building a team I started doing that within the last year. And so for me to spend time on something I have to make sure that they’re real friends as much as sure as I can be at their buyer. Right. So the first thing I do is evaluate the lead.

I strongly suggest everyone do that we have some. We only have so many hours a day and you want to work on at high probability leads as possible.

So that’s the first thing

I guess is now that restricted to virally so early. I mean all of the above everything everything.

Ana Bozovic: So for sellers or for sellers like you want to make sure that they’ll listen to especially in the Miami market and the Miami market as I’m sure you know has an extreme over saturation of inventory we’re floating around all time high for inventory. So in any given building can have like 20 listings and 2 sales in the last six months. Right. And so taking the listing from a client who doesn’t trust you and who won’t price the way you think it should be priced is a complete waste of time. It’s actually a waste of your money it’s a waste of your time.

So you have to really evaluate to see if the content is if the client respects your expertise and your guidance or you’re wasting your time in a down market. So it applies to buyers and sellers.

Gotcha. And we’ll break it down for me. What percentage of your business are buyers and what percentage are sellers.

Ana Bozovic:  Last year was more buyers and sellers. I actually happen to like buyers. Most people will say that they like or you should be listing agent and I’m not going to contest that because I might my model is a little bit different than most people with all the data that I put out. I get I get a good number and increasing number of clients who are cash buyers who just call me asking for good deals because they believe they believe it when I tell them because they read my data. So I and I especially especially in this market in Miami where there’s such a glut of inventory the listings that I did do last year were from clients who trusted me and who who like we priced it to sell and those are like you know the two fields we’re building for the past six months right.

Otherwise I’m not going to touch it.

So with the time you have any data on the trends of commissions paid to agents again knowing who our audience is here and I’m in the midst of a deal right now. Of course the buyer brought it to me. And of course it’s the lowest commissions I’ve ever seen but the buyer wants it. So I’m doing the deal. What’s the trend in commissions for agents? Are We Getting Squeezed in Miami now and what’s happening there?

Ana Bozovic:  I personally haven’t seen it. The only real place I haven’t seen it was the only place I see a trend. I did I did some research for clients who were looking to buy a whole bunch of single family homes in Broward and I’m in Broward County. OK we talked about the glut of condos. Broward has like an undersupply of houses at around 300000 and there are tons and tons of listings of you know price attainable affordable single family homes in Broward County or paying to two and a half percent out and like flying off the shelves.

So in a single family home market more affordable price single family home market I’m saying yeah I did I saw tons of inventory like with the 5 percent total two and a half to aside or even 2 percent and that’s selling. Other than that I haven’t I haven’t SSD.

OK. And now that it’s a buyer’s market Miami do you see strategically over paid units and house prices strategically. Buyers don’t. Brokers bonus or anything that’s being put out there to kind of entice agents.

Ana Bozovic:  Yeah yeah.

I do see that most things. And also a lot of the new developments which are sitting on tons and tons of inventory like are advertising crazy like 8 10 percent commissions out I don’t think that in the regular summer when the broker remark shows like over and give you a ten thousand dollar bonus whatever it is the buyer’s agent. I don’t think that’s actually effective because as those units are usually overpriced and buyers aren’t that stupid they have the Internet they can see that they’re 30 that’s for sale in the building and if their agent is showing them an overpriced unit they’re going to be like Why are you showing me this one.

And they’re going to see in the closing box if it gets to that but they got a bonus for it. I don’t see that as being effective rather than giving out a bonus you should price the unit.

Now I hear that. Well that’s that’s that’s interesting. I think I talk about it a lot of times with colleagues who are really trying to come up with these suggestions. So there’s no data to suggest that if the seller is paying too much of a commission or much more of a commission that the place is going to sell that much faster.

Ana Bozovic:  No no I don’t see it. I don’t see it. I mean especially for expensive stuff. There’s just such an oversupply in downtown Miami has a I Edgewater and downtown had like 100 months of inventory at a million dollars. It’s colossally bad. So the only thing they’re selling are things that are priced really really effectively because people again. People aren’t stupid. They go online they see all the inventory. If you want to sell it you really have to price effectively those bonuses.

I don’t think they were because you heard it first.

Conversely what if the the commission is down to 2 percent or two and a half is there any it’s going to.

Ana Bozovic:  Well yeah it’s going to kill you. Right. So yes. OK. Because the value in the down market in the market of dropping transaction volume which is what we have in the Miami area is that a real buyer a legitimate buyer especially one with cash is very valuable. Right. So if you’re in a buyer’s agent and your clients are buying your client is serious and they have cash and they’re going to spend a million or whatever they’re going to sell whatever they’re going to spend Are you sure you have a whole city to pick from because there’s 100 months of inventory.

Are you going to take them to a listing paying 2 percent. Absolutely not. You’re going to skip it and go to one of the other 20 that are for sale.

OK. So so are you an MFA. It wasn’t me. What. You know what is true when it is true. Now listen do I think it’s real. And how about this is not a moral or ethical about it provided you still got the client to know who units both three bedroom three baths. Yeah. You know it’s not much it’s not unethical at all. Mission yes. You know you’re getting an identical product. So yeah no look I’m a big fan of agents getting paid. I want you to get what you want.

I want you to earn your you know make make the money that everything was intended. OK. So let’s give them an outlet for for 2020. Do we have any doom and gloom where we won’t get a real recession like what is your prediction for this year and beyond.

Ana Bozovic:  I mean OK so starting with the Miami markets I just have been doing a lot of interviews on this topic. It’s more more of the same. We’re we’re in an environment of decreasing transaction volume increasing or rather inventory is not pulling back. So it’s just downward pressure for the foreseeable future what’s what’s what’s unique about the Miami market is that it was heavily all cash at highs. So 2013 was like transaction volume highs and Miami Beach with seventy eight or six percent all cash buyers. So in this downturn there’s no debt service pressure.

Right. So people are like holding on it’s not selling but they’re not they don’t have a mortgage. So it’s like a slower trickle. But it’s it’s more of the same. So the high end is going to have downward pressure it hasn’t even finished getting back at the same time in this region in south Florida we have an undersupply of price attainable housing like the Miami Dade area has the highest percentage of cost burden renters in the nation people paying more than 80 percent in growth and rent. So anything that’s affordable is an undersupply.

Anything over five hundred grand for condos like around 750 for single family is an oversupply. And the higher you go in price the worse the market is. But we’re seeing that nationwide. There was an article in The Wall Street Journal two days ago that there was like seven or five whatever it was years of inventory and then Manhattan luxury condo market it’s the same thing. So all these things are symptomatic of end of credit cycle behavior right where we’ve had like the longest bull market ever. We had record low interest rates the Fed funds rate still super low.

So all this stuff is indicative that we’re at the end of the credit cycle. So when it turns I don’t know if this year is next year no one has a crystal ball but that’s where we are and that’s why we’re seeing a slowdown in New York City also. Miami is just a newer more volatile market. The downturn here started sooner than New York but it’s the same pattern

Sure.

How much. How much.

New York refugees. Are you seeing that when you make your sale. Do we have a lot of people moving from high tax areas to Florida.

Ana Bozovic:  You know it’s hard to know where everyone comes from but it’s whoever it’s coming they’re not offsetting the decline. We have another year of transaction volume decline. So if if if whatever new workers were coming they’re not taking up the slack transaction volume keeps dropping that that’s just the honest truth. So I don’t know where they’re going if they’re coming it’s hard to say but overall volume keeps dropping.

While you’re here and you know anything else I with your permission I want to monitor your contact info on the show note. So I feel you know people can know where to get in touch with you. It’s Ana. This has been a blast. I think you really do have some great insights and anything else you want to let the audience know before we conclude.

Ana Bozovic:  Yeah I would just say everyone out there just really really focused on adding adding value. You can’t just sell to people all the time. Add value then people come to see you as a resource for information that differentiates you. And then they trust you. Look markets always go up and down. I don’t mean it gloomy prospect is just the nature of market cycles. Know where you are in the market cycle add value and you can make money in any part of the market. If you’re seeing somebody who adds value people will come to you.

Thank you. We’re listening to making a smarter agent. Do me a favor if you like making a smarter agent please go to Apple podcast or any of the podcast services you might be listening through and give me five stars. I look forward to seeing you next time. And remember connect with rainbow nation that’s. REIGNation on Facebook. It’s part think tank part group therapy for realtors all coaching and it’s affordable. Please tune in again next week to listen to another exciting episode of making a smarter agent.

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