How to Fail at Land Flipping (CFFL 386)

How to Fail at Land Flipping

Jack Butala: How to Fail at Land Flipping. Leave us your feedback for this podcast on iTunes and get the free ebook at, you don’t even have to read it. Thanks for listening.

Jack Butala:                            Jack Butala with Jill DeWit.

Jill DeWit:                               Good morning.

Jack Butala:                            Welcome to our show today. In this episode, Jill and I talk about how to fail at land flipping.

Jill DeWit:                               Oh, this aught to be good.

Jack Butala:                            How to fail?

Jill DeWit:                               I have a lot of things I can say about that.

Jack Butala:                            I can’t believe that you allowed this show to even hit the airwaves, Jill.

Jill DeWit:                               I have a lot to say.

Jack Butala:                            Before we get into it, let’s take a question posted by one of our members on, online community, it’s free.

Jill DeWit:                               Okay. Micheal asked, “Why is social media so important? I have a seller, and a buyer website, and a Facebook page. Do I need more?” I love this. You want to answer?

Jack Butala:                            You answer.

Jill DeWit:                               You want to go first, or you want me to go first?

Jack Butala:                            You go first.

Jill DeWit:                               Yes.

Jack Butala:                            Yeah, I agree.

Jill DeWit:                               It’s just the good old-fashioned, we talk about it sometimes a lot, which is reach. You never know where you’re going to reach that one person that you need to reach. It might be, as crazy as it sounds, an Instagram photo of your property for sale. You never know, a Tweet about your property for sale, just to reach that one person. Once you get into a system, this is a Jackisim coming out of me here.

Jack Butala:                            Uh-oh.

Jill DeWit:                               Once you have this into a system, then it’s not going to be that hard. You can schedule this stuff, too. Maybe that’s something that we didn’t talk about, too, that you don’t need to beat yourself up over the head trying to make your properties show up at a certain time, and be home at dinner time to say, that’s when most people are on, “I need to have this drop into everybody’s thing at this time.” There are a lot of things out there, like Hootsuite, and some other ones.

Jack Butala:                            Hootsuite, specifically.

Jill DeWit:                               That coast schedule, exactly, that you can go in and schedule when you want your properties to hit and where you want them to hit, and all that good stuff. Don’t worry. You don’t have to make a big deal about it and get hung up on it, but the answer’s yes. You do want to reach all those people. The other thing is what you’re doing as a seller is you’re creating your own following. You have us behind you, and because I know there’s Micheal’s in our world, you have all of our buyers and everybody in your world, but you’re going to be building up your own following.

Maybe, Micheal, your focused on the certain part of the country, and you got your own buyers that all love that hiking Montana property that you deal with, just whatever it is, so you might build up your own buyers list, and, gosh, maybe do your own blogs, and different things like that, and you will have customers for life.

Jack Butala:                            Yeah. I’m going to say a few cliches here.

Jill DeWit:                               Okay.

Jack Butala:                            There’s no such thing as bad press.

Jill DeWit:                               Yeah.

Jack Butala:                            Here’s the caveat. In the beginning, and it sounds like you’re relatively new at this, Micheal, you need to reach as many people as you can. I talk about it in the Cash Flow from Land Program to the point of nausea.

Jill DeWit:                               It is. That’s why, as I say the word, I’m like, “Oh, I’m going to say it now, reach.”

Jack Butala:                            What’ll happen is this: Jill’s 100% right. You want to use as many venues as you can. What’ll happen is you’re going to take a look at the analytics on who you reached in all those venues and you’re going to find out some patterns. Fortunately, for you, we’re in the same business, so I can tell you what they are.

Here’s a real-life story. Jill and I spent a lot of time and energy in Facebook early on. We figured that that was a great way to sell property, and it turned out that the Facebook, for property, it didn’t work as well. It works great, and we got a lot of traffic and lot of notoriety, but they weren’t buyers. People on Facebook don’t buy rural land.

I’m not saying, across the board, that’s true, I’m just saying there’s other venues that do better, like, let’s say, LandWatch.

Jill DeWit:                               True.

Jack Butala:                            If you write articles for LandWatch, or Land And Farm, that’s just as good as social media. Jill nailed it, and this is my final point, you have to make it a machine. You have to do it. It’s really easy to find tools on the internet and software to automate this.

It just so happens, in our case, that we do a daily show, a podcast, and that ends up hitting every type of social media possible. Because of Hootsuite, it’s all automated. When this show’s done and syndicated, it’s over. It goes everywhere automatically. We don’t even think about it after it’s all produced.

Jill DeWit:                               I don’t.

Jack Butala:                            No, jill never has.

Jill DeWit:                               I know. I don’t think about it after we hit the “out” button.

Jack Butala:                            Jill sits down in front of the mic when the alarm goes off on her calendar, and that’s it.

Jill DeWit:                               The red light’s off, I’m out.

Jack Butala:                            God. It’s so nice for me to do that. Anyway. Make it a machine, is what I’m saying. It’s not hard.

Jill DeWit:                               I have Jill in a machine.

Jack Butala:                            Some people don’t like to write blogs. Jill in a machine?

Jill DeWit:                               You just kind of said it. It makes me feel really good because I set alarms that pop up on our phone.

Jack Butala:                            Hey, for the record-

Jill DeWit:                               That’s true.

Jack Butala:                            -I don’t set anyone’s alarms.

Jill DeWit:                               We just heard one of yours a few minutes ago.

Jack Butala:                            We did. We did, actually. I set a lot alarms myself.

Jill DeWit:                               You have a lot alarms.

Jack Butala:                            If I don’t have alarms, and stuff, I get off track.

Jill DeWit:                               I know you do. Just the other day, you said, “Well, lunch is not in the calendar.” I said, “You’re right.”

Jack Butala:                            Jack the ogre.

Jill DeWit:                               Lunch is not in the calendar, and I’m going to go eat.

Jack Butala:                            You need more. Micheal, you need more. You should check Twitter and the whole thing. All of it, even some weird ones. Dude, write some articles for LinkedIn. It’s all good. You’ll find out exactly who listens to you and who doesn’t.

I don’t mean to bang Facebook. Maybe you and your personality, and the Facebook, it works great, it just didn’t for us.

Jill DeWit:                               Okay.

Jack Butala:                            If you have a question, or you want to be on the show, reach out to either one of us on Today’s topic: How to fail at land flipping. You know, we talk about how to succeed all the time, let’s talk about how we can fail. I should’ve titled it how we have failed in the past because that’s really what this show is about.

Jill DeWit:                               Oh, there we go.

Jack Butala:                            Go ahead, Jill. I know you have notes and stuff. I can see them.

Jill DeWit:                               I was thinking about this as I was watching a Grant Cardone live event. He was doing a Facebook Live thing recently, and I was watching. It was just an open forum, like, “Hey, here I am. Ask me any questions.”

He had between 700 and 900 people at a time chiming in, and I was there as a fly on the wall, and just seeing, what are these people asking? What’s everybody looking for? What’s everyone searching for? It tied into this. Whether it’s land flipping or, I really am not sure what all he does. I know he does real estate, but I don’t know what else he does.

Jack Butala:                            I thought he was a sale’s consultant.

Jill DeWit:                               He is. He does that.

Jack Butala:                            He just helps sales professionals.

Jill DeWit:                               Yes. He’s talking about failing in your business, and bigger pictures, other than just selling. One of the things he said was, “I wish I would’ve thrown more money at this in the beginning, and I wish I would’ve learned from some experienced people, and I didn’t try to reinvent the wheel,” and I’m like, “Oh, that was good.” That’s one thing that I’ve seen people that fail, and then they wonder why they don’t get the results. Yeah, I got it.

They hear one little thing, “Send a mailer, okay, I can do it better and faster,” and in the very end, how do I say this? It took us years to get where we are. We tried them all. That’s what we do and we save people. Here’s the best mailer.

How about a handwritten one? Nope, tried that, here’s why. How about a postcard? Nope, tried that, heres why. I can save everybody, a lot of time and a lot of money, and failing, because we’ve done it.

Jack Butala:                            One of my unconfessed hobbies is to make things more efficient. I think it’s just a guy thing. Every single time, along the way, we’d run into some kind of problem. We would just make it a machine. Make it more efficient somehow.

This whole thing started in the 90’s for me because I was tired of cold-calling. This is before the internet, or before the internet really kicked in.

Jill DeWit:                               People are still cold-calling.

Jack Butala:                            I can’t believe that.

Jill DeWit:                               Isn’t that funny?

Jack Butala:                            It’s amazing to me.

Jill DeWit:                               I’ve seen people going, “Can we get phone numbers on this list?” I’m like, “Why do you want a phone number?” You don’t want to do that.

Jack Butala:                            That was the first hurdle I had to get over. In the long chain of failures, that’s how I devised the mailing system. Seriously, I didn’t learn that from anyone else, and then on and on and on. Now, I’m not saying we wake up and smile every day. There’s still issues that we really have to work out because technology advances faster than we can all keep up with it here.

How to fail is to not adapt. That’s how you fail at this, and really at anything. You also can fail, like jill said, just to synopsize that, by not learning from people. You don’t have to spend any money. Just listen. The show is free.

This show’s free. I don’t know if our competitors have stuff free.

Jill DeWit:                               I don’t know. I don’t think of anybody as competitors. I don’t think we really have any.

Jack Butala:                            Here’s an example, Jill, very often, as she should, goes and listens to Greg Cardone’s stuff, and there’s stuff that she likes and stuff that she doesn’t. There’s things that she brings back to what we do here at Land [Pan It 00:09:30] and at Land Academy. She brings the good things and keeps the stuff she doesn’t like out.

Jill DeWit:                               You know what’s really funny? When I first listened to him, I thought, “Oh, my God. He’s just too much.”

Jack Butala:                            That’s what I thought.

Jill DeWit:                               I want to say I’m noticing a shift. I think he’s getting it. I think he’s realizing the take a step back, help more people, seriously, not charge, and really, sincerely help.

Jack Butala:                            Like us.

Jill DeWit:                               Right?

Jack Butala:                            I’m glad about that. He is really salesy. He’s kook sometimes.

Jill DeWit:                               He’s figuring it out, and I’m like, “Good for you,” because you know what? That’s the thing. The more you give, the more you get back. It’s a fact. We’ve tested that, too.

Jack Butala:                            Yes, we have. We didn’t fail at that.

Jill DeWit:                               No.

Jack Butala:                            Turns out, people like stuff for free.

Jill DeWit:                               Exactly. Here’s my second point on this how to fail, is if you don’t have any tenacity, you got to hang in there, man. You got to bounce back. You can’t give up. You’ve got to expect things to not work out.

Jack Butala:                            Teflon Don.

Jill DeWit:                               Teflon Don? What the heck?

Jack Butala:                            It’s a mafia reference.

Jill DeWit:                               Oh.

Jack Butala:                            The Teflon Don, you know?

Jill DeWit:                               Oh, okay, got it. Got it. I’m trying to think of a girl version of that, and I have none.

Jack Butala:                            Shattered dreams, that’s the girl’s version.

Jill DeWit:                               Shattered dreams. The unopened hope chest.

Jack Butala:                            This is a phone call that daughters call their mothers every day, it goes like this: Mom, why didn’t you tell me that he wasn’t going to change? Stuff like that.

Jill DeWit:                               I thought you were going to say, “Mom, this one really is the one.”

Jack Butala:                            Oh, that call goes on, too, but I’m talking about two or three years after that.

Jill DeWit:                               All the time. Oh, yeah. Exactly. That’s so funny. That’s good. The last point I had about how to fail land flipping is when you’re not properly prepared, you haven’t done your research, you haven’t carved out the time that you need to do this, and you haven’t put away any money to buy the property. Those are some. It seems basic, but you’d be surprised.

Jack Butala:                            Again, I’m going to say that in one sentence, you’re not doing it. You’re going to fail at this if you don’t do it.

Jill DeWit:                               Yeah. You got to go all in.

Jack Butala:                            Yeah. I’m not saying 24/7, I’m just saying you got to put yourself a calendar together with little milestones, deconstruct the whole thing. Little milestones, we could do that. We’ve talked about that for a while. We could put a calendar together for you, and we could spoon-feed you, too. I just don’t think that’s the right way to do it. We provide the tools, we provide the education, but you have to do it.

Jill DeWit:                               I did one last fall in our newsletter where I did a six-week series. Remember that?

Jack Butala:                            Yeah.

Jill DeWit:                               It was how to buy and sell out your first property in 45 days.

Jack Butala:                            Oh, yeah. I do remember that.

Jill DeWit:                               Everybody’s like, “What? That sounds crazy.” I’m like, “Okay, everyone, this is not crazy.” We did a show, and the show was so great that I went back and said, “All right. Well, I’m going to do this in a newsletter,” and I did week one.

Jack Butala:                            I do remember that one.

Jill DeWit:                               I did not only that was how to buy and sell your first property in 45 days, and it was only spending a few hours, no more than four hours, on a Sunday, or whatever your weekend is for you.

Jack Butala:                            I remember writing that with you.

Jill DeWit:                               Thank you. I sat and said, “All right. The first one, all you’re going to do is sit down with your stuff and identify a target market. That’s it. You’re going to spend four hours doing this research, look at all this stuff, we spell it all out, and then the next week, now you’re going to go and put together your mailer, and then the next week, you’re going to push the button on the mailer.” It was really slow.

When you sit and look at it like that, you go, “Oh, okay. It’s not that crazy.” Like what you just said, setting out real clear consistent goals and milestones. We’re going to talk more about that on the show coming up at the end of this week, too.

Jack Butala:                            Right. Yeah. People ask me all the time, “What is it? You obviously have a lot of members. The ones that do really, really well, and the ones that don’t, what’s the difference? Fill us in. What’s the secret?” There’s no secret, by the way.

Jill DeWit:                               No, there’s no secret.

Jack Butala:                            I quote Ross Perot from a lot of years ago, and I’m not a fan, I don’t care either way. I truly don’t care about politics, any of it, quite honestly. When someone asked him the same question, he said, “When folks don’t know they’ve been beat, then they’re going to succeed.” Where they just keep going 100 miles an hour, and it’s like, “That’s not going to work.” You know what? Those are the people that end up doing it.

Jill DeWit:                               That’s why you and I are successful, too. You and I. I don’t know if I’ve talked about it on this show here, but my parents, I drove them crazy.

Jack Butala:                            Oh, really? You?

Jill DeWit:                               Oh, yeah. Right? Yeah. Shh. That’s not funny. I wish you could see the look on my face right now. All right, Jack.

Jack Butala:                            I can see the look on your face.

Jill DeWit:                               Thanks a lot. Yeah, no, but everybody else. It’s good.

Jack Butala:                            You know what’s great about having a show with your spouse? You can do a lot of stuff on the air that you could never do behind closed doors.

Jill DeWit:                               Yeah.

Jack Butala:                            You’d get in so much trouble.

Jill DeWit:                               You can say things that I can’t come back on right now. Oh, but I can later, because I’ll remember that. Just kidding. I don’t remember anything. Okay. I almost forgot what I was going to say.

No, my point is, my parents told me, who knew it was a good thing, but my parents said a long time ago, “Holy, cow, Jill, you do not know the word no,” and I didn’t, and I still don’t. If you tell me no to, I’m trying to setup, say, this credit card process, or, I don’t know, dream it up, and someone says, “No, you can’t do it for real estate.” Fine, then I’m going to go find another way. I will find somebody who does, and if I can’t, we, this is you and I, Jack, will create it. That’s you, too.

Jack Butala:                            In the long list of things that I love about you, Jill, that’s pretty high up.

Jill DeWit:                               Oh, good.

Jack Butala:                            I’m like that, too.

Jill DeWit:                               Exactly.

Jack Butala:                            There’s not a lot of people. We just don’t get discouraged.

Jill DeWit:                               No.

Jack Butala:                            Here, I’ll give you an example. A very quick example, we’re running out of time here. A lot of people, I talk about back tax tax sale lists in the Cash Flow from Land Program, and Tax Sale List has since been sold and defunct. Right? We have not updated the package, so people come in and they ask all the time, especially new members, “What do we do with this back tax, this piece, because it’s gone?”

I went onto the internet and said, “All right. We need to find a replacement for this.” There’s a site called that is defunct. I keep trying to contact the people. I said, “Great. I’m just going to buy the whole thing. We’ll find a replace.”

Well, I can’t find the guy, so it’s just sitting there dormant. It has nothing to do with us. If you go there, it’s funny, it’s just like a ghost ship.

Jill DeWit:                               It’s like a what?

Jack Butala:                            Like a ghost ship.

Jill DeWit:                               Oh, okay.

Jack Butala:                            Do you ever hear of a ghost ship?

Jill DeWit:                               Yes.

Jack Butala:                            It’s a ship in the middle of the ocean that’s abandoned.

Jill DeWit:                               Oh, everybody just jumped off and it’s just floating?

Jack Butala:                            Yeah. It’s been resting in the middle of the ocean for 25 years.

Jill DeWit:                               Exactly.

Jack Butala:                            What did I do? I stayed up till 4:00 in the morning, this was two weeks ago, and recreated, it’s called I went out and got the .com, and it’ll be released later this month. That’s a perfect example of what you’re saying. We don’t take no for an answer. You just do it.

Jill DeWit:                               Exactly.

Jack Butala:                            We’re not going to charge for that, at least in the beginning.

Jill DeWit:                               Yeah.

Jack Butala:                            It was ridiculous how much those guys charge. Well, that’s why they’re out of business.

Jill DeWit:                               There we go.

Jack Butala:                            Join us in another episode where Jack and Jill discuss how to use information, that’s me.

Jill DeWit:                               And inspiration, that’s me.

Jack Butala:                            To get just about anything you want.

Jill DeWit:                               We use it every day to buy property for half of what it’s worth and sell it immediately.

Jack Butala:                            You are not alone in your real estate ambition. You want to know what else is on the list about stuff that I love you?

Jill DeWit:                               Yeah, I do.

Jack Butala:                            Let’s see. There’s a lot of stuff, but I’ll come up with a couple of really good ones.

Jill DeWit:                               Do you want to know one of mine?

Jack Butala:                            Yeah.

Jill DeWit:                               You stand up for me.

Jack Butala:                            Oh, yeah.

Jill DeWit:                               If I ever say, “Hey,” which is very rare, fortunately, “Something didn’t go the way I wanted. That person really wasn’t respectful,” you’re on it, man. You do not mess around, and I appreciate that.

Jack Butala:                            You’re exactly right, by the way, and everybody who works with us. I don’t know if that’s Italian, or Detroit, or man, or what, but that just gets under my thing, man.

Jill DeWit:                               It’s all a little bit.

Jack Butala:                            The whole disrespect thing. Thank you. That’s a nice compliment.

Jill DeWit:                               Thank you.

Jack Butala:                            I love that you can get up and really not get dressed at all and do a show.

Jill DeWit:                               Yeah. You like this?

Jack Butala:                            Information and inspiration to buy undervalued property.


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