Purposeful | 2020 Blog Graphic | AprilNoelle.com

Purposeful

It has been almost a year since I wrote on this blog.

It wasn’t intentional.

I was wondering what I should do with this blog. Should I keep it? Should I let it go? Should I rebrand? Should I….

The questions don’t matter.

The fact is, it’s hard to commit when you don’t know what you want.

I didn’t know what I wanted.

More specifically, I didn’t know what I wanted my little corner of the internet to be. It hasn’t been “me” for a long time.

I did what paid the bills and made ends meet. I did enough to keep this thing alive. And I can tell you that it didn’t feel good. I didn’t feel like it fed my soul or kept me going. So I let it go.

Not intentionally. I stopped caring and when you stop caring things happen.

No one tells you as an adult that there are actions to your inactions and those actions are NOT what you want, because life keeps going. It doesn’t stop because you don’t decide to live it to the fullest.

So, this year, my intention is to be purposeful – intentional – nothing is to just happen to me in 2020.

Purposeful | Word of the Year | AprilNoelle
black woman working with laptop at the airport waiting at the window
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Brave | AprilNoelle.com

Brave

I’ve been ruminating on this word, BRAVE, for weeks as I’ve deemed it my “Word of the Year”. As simple as it is, my chosen word of the year has a lot of implications and requirements.

Unlike a previous choice, the word brave means “ready to face and endure danger or pain; showing courage”. Merriam-Webster Dictionary.

Honestly, I sigh with an overwhelming sense of pressure, even before I get start. I LOVE my comfort zone. My comfort zone is just living my day to day life. I take the kids to school, I go to work and connect with potential homeowners and sellers.

I would say that I have at least one luxury. I have a wonderful husband that affords me the ability to not work 9-5 in a job I hate. We also don’t live an extravagant life. We take one modest family vacation a year, eat out maybe once a month and take advantage of as many free activities as we can!

However, even with this simple change in my life, it also means that I don’t have to make much. No one is depending on my income. And back to the comfort zone I go.

But this year, I vow to be different because I want more. I want to do more than go on one vacation or eat out occasionally. I want to get comfortable with the idea of being uncomfortable.

But how am I going to be brave? My goal for this year is to say yes to more AND seek more opportunities to:

  • Become a public speaker
  • Connect with other entrepreneurs
  • Grow my marketing skills

So, what about you? Do you have resolutions or a word of the year? It’s already February, are you staying on target?

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The power of design in the startup ecosystem

The reason many tech companies fail is not a bad product/market fit, the wrong technological approach or lack of experienced CFO, but the design — not just the website UX but the design in its entirety. The way things are integrated together. The creative process.

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12 Key issues for SaaS startups seeking financing

The reason many tech companies fail is not a bad product/market fit, the wrong technological approach or lack of experienced CFO, but the design — not just the website UX but the design in its entirety. The way things are integrated together. The creative process.

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The power of design in the startup ecosystem

The reason many tech companies fail is not a bad product/market fit, the wrong technological approach or lack of experienced CFO, but the design — not just the website UX but the design in its entirety. The way things are integrated together. The creative process.

Read More

12 Key issues for SaaS startups seeking financing

The reason many tech companies fail is not a bad product/market fit, the wrong technological approach or lack of experienced CFO, but the design — not just the website UX but the design in its entirety. The way things are integrated together. The creative process.

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Six Steps to the Perfect Pitch | AprilNoelle.com

6 Steps to the Perfect Pitch

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Did you know, the perfect pitch is extremely important?

Why?

Because people have short attention spans. How many of you are skimming this article now? People do that while listening too!

If your 30-60 second pitch is disjointed, incoherent, or fragmented, PEOPLE STOP LISTENING! 

If they do listen to the end, do they know who you are and what you need? The answer to that question is often “NO”. 

I know you’re saying, “I do SO many different things.” 

What that says to other people is that you’re unfocused and likely unable to care diligently for their client. 

Let’s make this personal. I’m a real estate agent. I went to my coach just today and told her that I started helping women focus their networking to grow their business.

Her first question was “How are you going to stay focused on real estate?”

And she KNOWS me. She knows that if I’m taking something on, I’ll be able to divide my time well. What if she didn’t? Her first reaction would be to ignore me.

The next question is how do you put together a perfect pitch that encompasses everything you do. The short answer is you shouldn’t. I will talk about this in another post.

Let’s develop YOUR pitch. Enter your email address above to get the worksheet!

Step 1: Tell Us Who You Are and What You Do

The first part of your pitch should include all of the standard information. Name, your title, your company and what you do. You may think this is a given, but often everyone misses one key part. What do you do? 

Don’t assume that the person standing in front of you understands what an “accountant” does or “real estate agent”. 

Mine goes something like this:

My name is April Grant and I help people build wealth through the purchase and sell of homes as a real estate agent with Keller Williams. 

Step 2: Name three things that you do that sets you apart from your competitors.

In any field, the person in front of you has an idea of “who you are”. How do you separate yourself from their assumptions?

This will take you the longest to figure out how you are different. So take some time think about the three things that you do that you know your competitors do not.

My examples are:

  • I listen to my buyer’s needs to get to get them the home that they desire.
  • I price a home correctly to get my seller’s the most money for their home.
  • I educate my buyers and sellers so that they feel comfortable closing on their home.

Step 3: Choose three adjectives that you use in regular conversation.

Here’s the definition of an adjective if you don’t remember: a word or phrase naming an attribute, added to or grammatically related to a noun to modify or describe it.

My three adjectives are: awesome, excellent, fantastic.

Step 4: Rewrite Step 2 using the adjectives in Step 3.

This is better shown than explained. See my examples below:

  • I’m awesome at listening to my buyer’s needs to get to get them the home that they desire.
  • I’m excellent at pricing my seller’s home correctly to get my seller’s the most money for their home.
  • I’m a fantastic educator so that my buyers and sellers feel comfortable closing on their home.

Step 5: Tell the audience who your target market is. 

I’m looking for people who are willing and able to buy or sell a home within the next three months.

I’ll admit, this is a little broader than I’d like but it works in this situation. Target markets should not be generic and I’ll help you develop your target market in another post.

Step 6: Close with a tag line or salutation. 

In your closing, include anything catchy that’s in your pocket and your preferred method of contact. If you don’t have anything catchy, just close with a Thank You!

Texts are best and I’d love if you’d follow me on Instagram. Thank you and have an awesome day!

Here’s the final product:

My name is April Grant and I help people build wealth through the purchase and sell of homes as a real estate agent with Keller Williams. I listen to my buyer’s needs to get to get them the home that they desire. I price a home correctly to get my seller’s the most money for their home. I educate my buyers and sellers so that they feel comfortable closing on their home. I’m looking for people who are willing and able to buy or sell a home within the next three months. Texts are best and I’d love if you’d follow me on Instagram. Thank you and have an awesome day!

Leave your “perfect pitch” below or shoot me an email. Better yet, I would love if you would share it on social media and tag me @theaprilnoelle.

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Meet the Right People at Networking Events | AprilNoelle.com

Who You SHOULD Meet While Networking

It’s almost five o’clock and you signed up to go to a networking event that starts at six. What you really want to do is to go home, eat and go to sleep or take care of the millions of things elsewhere.

But…

You promised yourself you’d grow your business. It’s been stagnant for a while and it’s time to get more customers. You’re normally disappointed because you may get one customer, if you’re lucky.  Time is running out. So, what are you looking for? Who should you meet?

Typically, my goal is to get at least 10 business cards consisting of one of these two categories: prospects and strategic alliances. As a real estate agent, I am happy to collect ALL cards to build my database and reach out to the rest of the people in the future.

Prospects

Identifying prospects are the easiest. Prospects are your target client. Pay attention to these three traits when spotting a prospect.

A Prospect is the Decision Maker

The decision maker is the one who will make the FINAL decision on whether or not the company or person will use the product. As an example, in the real estate industry, you would need both the husband and the wife for any final decisions.

Companies will often send a representative to network at an event. With a few simple questions, you’ll be able to determine whether the person is a decision maker.

  1. Who else is involved in this process?
  2. Who will be using the product?
  3. Which evaluation criteria are the other stakeholders using?

Need more? Check out 25 Qualifying Questions to Identify the Decision Maker.

If any of the answers imply that another person is involved, you need a referral and this is not a prospect, but a lead.

A Prospect Needs What Your Selling

Not everyone needs what your selling, even if you want them to. Most people in their life will need a real estate agent. That said, if they aren’t needing a property within the next year, they are not a prospect for me.

A Prospect Can Afford It

As much as you want everyone to purchase your product, not everyone will be able to. You should have qualifying questions in order to determine whether or not the person in front o fyou can afford it.

Action Steps

So what happens when you find a prospect?

Schedule a meeting! Try to schedule one that night (without being too aggressive) or give them a call the next day. 

Strategic Alliances

Strategic Alliances are your partners. They are the network of people who will give you access and referrals to your prospects. 

The traits of a strategic alliance is as follows:

  • They are in a position to send your referrals. They know who you WANT to know.
  • They “get it”. They know how networking really works and are willing to send you a referral because they know you will as well.

There are three types of strategic alliances:

The Complement

They work in a different industry and have the same client. As a realtor, my complements are title, mortgage and homeowner insurance companies.

The Comparable

These alliances will have the same type of client yet in a different business. As a realtor, this would be financial planners and general insurance agents. People who could afford a home and likely are looking to protect their assets in the long term.

The Competitor

Yep, you read that right, your competitor can be a very good strategic alliance. Although in real estate, realtors are willing to take every client they come across, in other industries, your niche may not include a prospect. As an example, if you mainly deal with estate planning in law, you would not deal with a litigation client.

Action Steps

Schedule a meeting! These meetings are typically scheduled in a follow up phone call. Follow up within 3 business days. Bring your Top Ten List.

Any questions? Drop a note or an email.

Happy Networking!

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Top Ten List | AprilNoelle.com

The Only Top Ten List You’ll Ever Need

Have you gone to networking event after networking event, followed up with each person, only to NOT receive any business out of the process? 

I have.

Have you been in the cycle for a while wondering what’s the point of networking? 

I’ve done that too.

I know I’ve questioned why isn’t this working? Why am I wasting my time with all of this?

Let’s be honest, when you’re networking with potential strategic alliances, your voice is just one of many… send me “everybody who…” or “anyone looking to…” That’s what everyone says to them. So when it comes to talking to you, you’re not only in competition with whoever that “somebody” already knows, you’re in competition with everyone your contact knows too (i.e., other industry people). 

So, how do you differentiate yourself from the crowd?

The Missing Piece of the Puzzle

I realized I was missing a piece of the puzzle. Having a great conversation and leaving a positive and informative impression is just the start. 

The Top Ten List is the list that will change your business. 

So, what exactly is the Top Ten List?

The Top Ten List

It’s rather simple actually.

It is a mix of the top ten people or organizations or positions that you want to meet to make your business grow! 

For example:

If you own a product line of natural and organic vitamins and supplements and are seeking distribution, instead of saying “I’d like to meet anyone who likes natural and organic goods,” you would provide a list like this:

  • Jane Smith, buyer for MegaFoods
  • Jon Doe, buyer for NatureMade
  • Owner of a boutique that rents out shelf space
  • and more…

This shows your new companion that:

You have a vision

You know your industry

Evenmoreso, it makes it easier for them to have a clear vision of WHO to refer to you! Most likely, by the end of the conversation, you will either receive a referral or consideration for a referral. 

Do you have a Top Ten List? Do you know who you’re going going to add to yours?

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Your Network Is... | Networking Isn't an Event | AprilNoelle.com

Networking isn’t an Event


Your Network Is... | Networking Isn't an Event | AprilNoelle.comTrue networking isn’t an event.

It’s a call, a coffee, a drink.
Networking is building a relationship with the other person. It’s getting them to trust you and you to trust them.
 
I get frustrated when I hear people, especially entrepreneurs, say that they don’t get anything out of networking events. 
If this is you, you’re doing it wrong!
That’s typically because the relationship begins and ends in that 20 minute (or less) conversation. Both parties shared what their profession, stated some pleasantries then went off to the next person.
Grabbing a card is easy.
Attending an event is easy.
Building a relationship is hard.
 
The purpose of a networking event is to meet people. The purpose of networking is grow your influence, build trust, and get the other to trust you enough to (1) remember you and (2) refer people to you.
What have your results been?
Do you find networking events not worth the time you put into them?
Then, it’s time for a change. I am here to help.
You never know who someone knows. You don’t know if they are two degrees of separation away from Bill Gates or Martha Stewart.
 
How many business cards are in your pocket, wallet or desk? When’s the last time you reached out to them and found out what was going on in their life? If the answer is never, that’s who you need to call tomorrow.
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Run Your World | AprilNoelle.com

Sometimes It’s Not Your “Why”, It’s Your “What”

Podcast episode at the bottom of this post. This is not a transcript, this is a synopsis.

I know you’ve heard it – “FIND YOUR WHY and you can accomplish anything!”

I’m not going to say finding your WHY isn’t powerful, it truly is. Your why is your driving force.

But…

Your why may not be strong enough to push through your “what”.

What are you doing to make that money?

I’ve tried several side hustles using my “why”… and I fell flat. I never made much more money (if any) than what I put in.

I wanted to love the products, I did. I would spend tons of time and effort memorizing scripts and perfecting strategies for dominating the market.

Sounds good, right?

I worked hard, I followed the plan, and I failed over and over again.

Ultimately, I realized that I wasn’t passionate about it. I liked and used the product, but I also knew that there were other cheaper products. I knew that because I am cheap frugal and I knew if I wasn’t selling this product, I’d opt for something cheaper.

Now that I’m in real estate, I have passion. I have love for what I do. I am growing and making more now than I ever did with the other ventures.

So, I just wanted to send a reminder that sometimes it’s not your why, but what you’re doing that may limit your success.

Find your WHY, then find your WHAT!

I know yo

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