Guy Kawasaki’s Email Writing Strategy

If you are like me, email is still an important channel of communication. Unfortunately you may also suffer from the tendency to write lengthy emails that nobody wants to read. Yes you need to include detail, but the length of an email can turn off a reader as much as a spam hard sell sales pitch. Guy Kawasaki gives great advice for writing emails in his book “Reality Check.”

Guy Kawasaki’s Email Guidelines

  • Length: “The ideal length of an email is five (5) sentences
  • Content: “The ideal content level is one (1) idea
  • Identify: “Simply explain who you are in one (1) or two (2) sentences
  • Ask: once you identify yourself, “get to the ask”
  • Don’t Ask: “If it’s not reasonable (your request), don’t ask at all”

Real Estate Selling Strategies: Guy Kawasaki’s The Art of Selling

Guy Kawasaki book

Who is Guy Kawasaki and why is he telling you how to sell? Better yet why should Realtors or real estate professionals care about a man who has made his living in Silicon Valley raising money and capital for start up fame and fortune? Here is why: the man knows how to sell without angering his audience,  he knows how to inspire evangelistic behavior from the most reticent audience, and he knows why most of us do not understand how to sell. Please pay attention to the following quotes from Guy’s book Reality Check: The Irreverent Guide to Outsmarting, Outmanaging, and Outmarketing Your Competition

2 Guy Kawasaki Quotes on Selling

  • Sell don’t enable buying: ” An iPod is bought because people walk into the Apple store intending to buy it. They’ve already made the decision. The products and services of most organizations are sold, not bought. If you don’t have an iPod-like product, you need face-to-face, personalized, and intense contact. Advertising can’t do this, so for most organizations the best lead-generation methods are seminars, presentations by company executives, and schmoozing.”

    dg: Kawasaki’s notions of lead generation are absolutely correct. For Realtors or real estate professionals, lead generation is no longer a print advertising, newspaper or magazine play.  If you want to “enable buying” and you do not have an i-Pod like product:

    • You (the Realtor) must take your case (why I should hire you) live to the people
    • Speak in front of groups & organizations made up of your prospective  targets not your industry associations where you speak to your peers and competitors
    • Webinars are essential. Give free real estate webinars to large companies in your region who have an aggressive relocation policy for staff
    • Differentiate your messages or run with the pack that is dropping out of the industry

    • Make prospects talk:“If prospects are open to buying your product  or service they will usually tell you what it will   take to close them. All you have to do is (A) get them talking about their needs; (B) shut up; (C) listen; (D) explain how your product or service fills their need”

    dg: The following are things that destroy or hinder a sale

    • Lack of product knowledge
    • The person can not listen or stop talking long enough to listen
    • Lack of prepared questions for the prospect
    • Inability to think on their feet (if they had only been listening) and ask questions of the prospect based on the live conversation

    National Association of Realtors’ Twitter Strategy: Update

    A few weeks ago, I wrote an open letter to NAR asking them what their Twitter strategy delivers to their constituency. My point was to highlight the fact that NAR dubs itself “The Voice of Real Estate” yet they did not give Realtors a voice when on the social media site original post “National Association of Realtors’ Twitter Strategy” shows the following screen shot of NAR’s Twitter account:


    The date of this shot above was February 17, 2009 and it shows that NAR was follow 0 as in zero Realtors on Twitter.

    Strategy for NAR:

    The best strategy for NAR would be to follow what well known pundits like Guy Kawasaki and companies like Starbucks do with their Twitter strategy: follow everyone. On Twitter the best method to recognize your audience, and that is the main focus or should be for NAR, is to follow them when they follow you. Here is an example provided by Starbucks Coffee:


    Starbucks follows all the people and companies that follow them. They engage their audience and provide their audience, consumers, and evangelists the opportunity to directly communicate with them.

    3 Benefits For Following Everyone Who Follows You on Twitter:

    You can’t receive DM aka direct messages from your audience of Realtors UNLESS you follow them back. Simply put when a Realtor follows you, the ettiquette and strategy of following them back immediately opens the lines of communication. This allows you 3 advantages:

    1. You can receive feedback on your products and services
    2. You can measure your marketing and social media campaigns
    3. You can open a direct dialogue with the audience you claim to serve

    Update on the “New Strategy” at NAR

    Apparently somebody is listening but not really understanding. Whoever is in charge of the NAR Twitter strategy decided to follow roughly 6% of the Realtors and professionals who follow them. Here is the NAR Twitter page as of March 3, 2009:


    A Step in the Right Direction

    Although this is a step toward the strategy they should consider, following 42 out of the 743 followers that are your direct audience and constituency seems a tepid effort at best. At least NAR is making progress in the right direction.

    Job Seeker’s Guide to Making the Hiring Manager Happy ran a survey of 31,000 employers about their use of social media in screening and finding job applicants. The results include:

    • More than 1 in 5 employers use social media sites to screen job applicants
    • 22% of the 31,000 employers said they use social media to find human capital
    • 9% more said they would begin utilizing social media sites in 2009
    • 31% or nearly 10,000 employers will focus on social media as a recruiting and screening tool in 2009

    The writing, pardon the pun, is on the wall. If you want to make a hiring manager happy, and help yourself, you will adopt all of the steps outlined below to help you–stand apart from the competition.

    Silicon Valley star Guy Kawasaki did not intend for his chapter “The Art of Driving Your Competition Crazy” in Reality Check to be job seeker’s advice; yet the main theme is vital for any job seeker’s success. The chapter outlines 8 steps to drive your competition crazy aimed at helping entrepreneurs and corporations understand how to win at the art of business.The most valuable theme and step is “Focus on the customer.” Guy outlines the irony that entrepreneurs and businesses should not take action against the competition–don’t do anything to them but everything for the customer.

    Theme: Make the Hiring Manager Happy

    The idea and theme here is to ignore your competition and focus completely on a hiring manager’s happiness. Ignore the millions who are out of work and competing for the same jobs, ignore the pundits who continue to fuel the panic, ignore the negative naysayers who continue to bring your spirit down.

    Instead think about what makes hiring managers happy? How about taking the task of reading resumes off their plate. What about saving them time, energy, and focus by removing the screening process that entails resumes and cover letters. Why not remove the gray areas and guess work for a hiring manager by delivering a better more revealing resource than a resume which is simply a job seeker’s listing of their value? How about removing the issue of back checking aka background checks to validate claims on a resume? Why not attempt to reduce their time wasted recruiting and looking for the right candidate for the job when you are available?

    Most Hiring Managers Dislike:

    • Deluge of resumes create huge time crunch
    • Lost productivity in their own jobs due to resume review process
    • Tasking other people from their jobs to help in the review of resumes
    • Guess work involved in hoping they choose the right candidate
    • Decisions about new hires ultimately reflect upon the hiring manager’s own judgment
    • Lack of information or verifiable proof that job seeker can deliver their listed values in their resume

    Make a Hiring Manager Happy:

    • Craft your value message of expertise, accomplishments, and experience
    • Establish your “employment campaign” blog that delivers your value message
    • Research how you can provide value to targeted hiring managers then deliver your value message
    • Write a keyword rich, descriptive, and opportunity message Linkedin profile
    • Utilize Twitter to broadcast and deliver your value message
    • Research your target companies for their participation in Web 2.0 blogging, social media networking, and engage them through these channel

    Job Seekers Become Memorable Through Influence

    Beacon News member of the Chicago Sun-Times newsgroup published this deansguide article 1-06-09

    Chicago Sun-Times published this deansguide article 1-06-09

    The most compelling need for job seekers today, in one of the most highly competitive job markets in history, is to be memorable. If you do not stand out and differentiate yourself from your competition, your search progress will be delayed–indefinitely.

    What is influence and how does it pertain to your job search? If you are looking for ways to stand apart from the over crowded human capital pool, consider your abilities to influence others. In today’s job market, winning that coveted interview leading to a job requires the job seeker to become a target marketer.

    But even with the best research, including desired companies and hiring managers, job seekers must be able to influence people in order to capture the interview leading to that desired position.

    What is Influence?

    In his interview for Guy Kawasaki’s fantastic must read “Reality Check”, Dr. Robert Cialdini PhD, Professor of Psychology at Arizona State University, and one of the world’s leading experts on persuasion, compliance, and negotiation defines influence:

    “Influence means creating change in some way. Change can be in an attitude, it can be in a perception, or a behavior. But in all instances, we can’t lay claim to influence until we can demonstrate we have changed someone.”

    Influence a “Science” for All

    According to Dr. Cialdini the good news about influence is that it is no longer just for certain “gifted” individuals. Instead Cialdini insists:

    “For centuries, the ability to be influential and persuasive has been thought of as an art, but there’s also a science to it. And if it’s scientific, it can be taught. It can be learned. So we all have the potential to become more influential.”

    Influence Your Job Search

    With the trend for job search turning to proactive target marketing and social media tools within an employment campaign, the natural progression for a job seeker is influence. How to influence hiring managers and persuade companies to give you a interview is the ultimate goal.

    The true reality check is the fact that a Web 1.0 resume, with no measurement capabilities, is not the answer in today’s job market. The old method of response mode marketing via a resume must be replaced by a Web 2.0 employment campaign strategy.

    Six Principles of Influence: Create Change That Benefits Your Customer

    Influence is one of the most important factors in any business from the one-off entrepreneur to the largest global corporations. To understand the power of influence and persuasion, you must first understand the definition of influence.

    The best definition is offered by one of the world’s leading experts on influence, persuasion, and negotiation Dr. Robert Cialdini as told in his interview for Guy Kawasaki’s great book “Reality Check.” Dr. Chialdini, a psychology professor at Arizona State University and Phd defines influence:

    “Influence means creating change in some way. Change can be in an attitude, it can be in a perception, or a behavior. But in all instances, we can’t lay claim to influence until we can demonstrate that we’ve changed someone.”

    Six Universal Principles of Influence

    1. Reciprocation: People give back and treat you the same way you treat them

    2. Scarcity: People are motivated to “seize the opportunities” of a limited offer that you provide to them if they realize the supply of this offer is rare or in dwindling availability

    3. Authority: The greater your knowledge and credibility on a subject is the easier it is to persuade people

    4. Commitment: People will feel the need and obligation to “comply with your request” if it is consistent with what they have publicly agreed (committed) to in your presence

    5. Liking: The degree to which people know and like you is the main factor in their preference to say “yes” to you

    6. Consensus: People love company in most decisions. If you give them evidence that others, just like them, have said yes to you, they then “will be likely” to say yes to you more often than not