DGS 154: Doing The Unscalable Is What Scales Your Property Management Business

What unscalable things are you doing, but none of your competitors are doing, to scale your property management business? Do the unscalable things because that’s the strategy that scales companies.

Property management growth expert and founder/CEO of DoorGrow, Jason Hull talks about doing the unscalable to help your business grow. If you want to scale your business, do the unscalable things that nobody else is willing to do but what the customers want.

You’ll Learn…

[02:25] Secret to Scale: Grow your business by doing the unscalable things.

[03:00] Real World Examples: Blanketing adverstising strategies, such as PPC, SEO.

[04:06] Top Strategies: Do unscalable things to grow and add doors via referrals.

[06:25] What is unscalable? Personal one-on-one interactions to make more money.

[06:50] Referral Results: Online reviews grow your business, reputation, retention rates.

[08:25] Opposite Direction: Build relationships and scale systems to get revenue results.

[13:15] Unscalable Things: What’s the least scalable thing you can do to add doors?


“The problem is that everybody is looking for the scalable solution.”

“It’s all about creating more depth and connection on a one-on-one individual basis with potential referral partners.”

“If you do warm, personal outreach, you’re going to create a lot more reviews.”

“Do the unscalable things, and that’s what scales companies.”


DoorGrow and Scale Mastermind

DoorGrow Academy

DoorGrow on YouTube







Grant Cardone


Welcome, DoorGrow Hackers, to the DoorGrowShow. If you are a property management entrepreneur that wants to add doors, make a difference, increase revenue, help others impact lives, you are interested in growing your business and life, and you are open to doing things a bit differently, then you are a DoorGrow Hacker. DoorGrow Hackers love the opportunities, daily variety, unique challenges, and freedom that property management brings.

Many in real estate think you’re crazy for doing it. You think they’re crazy for not because you realize that property management is the ultimate high trust gateway to real estate deals, relationships, and residual income. At DoorGrow, we are on a mission to transform property management business owners and their businesses. I’m your host, property management growth expert, Jason Hull, the founder and CEO of DoorGrow. Now let’s get into the show.

For today’s topic, what I wanted to talk with you about is doing the unscalable. A lot of times in businesses, everybody’s looking for what’s the scalable option, which means what’s the shortcut? What’s the hack? What’s the fast way to do this so we can just do as little work as possible? How can we just hit a whole bunch of people? Here’s how that tends to look. We do that in our advertising, we do that in marketing a lot of times.

A lot of people are trying to figure out, how can they create some sort of shortcut? Let’s direct mail everybody. Let’s see if we can just blanket text message everybody. Let’s set up automation. A lot of people come to me and they’re like, what’s the secret? How are you helping your clients add 100, 200, or more doors in a year?

How are they growing right now because our company is down about 200 doors over previous years because all the owners are selling because the market’s hot right now? They want to get out of these properties and cash out of their investment. But the problem is that everybody’s looking for a scalable solution, and here’s the secret. If you want to scale your business, do the unscalable things that nobody is doing.

If you want to stand out in the marketplace, do what nobody else is willing to do that the customers really want. If you want to scale your business in sales and improve sales, do the unscalable things that nobody else is willing to do. Instead of automation, go in the complete opposite direction. How can we have more depth and connection? Let’s throw out some practical, real-world examples of this.

One example that I refer to a lot is a lot of people will try to grow their business through these blanketing strategies of advertising. They want to blanket the world and just spray and pray. So they’ll use strategies like let’s focus on pay per click, content marketing, or SEO. Why? Because these are the things they can throw money at and have somebody else maybe do for them, they hope.

The challenge is when you try and create a system where you think you’re going to have a lot of leverage, hey, we’ll just throw money at this problem, the challenge is, usually, you get more work in exchange. For example, those are all cold leads. Cold leads take a lot more time to deal with. They take more nurture, they take more follow up time, there’s less trust involved.

If there’s less trust involved and there’s more follow-up time involved, then it’s actually going to take more work. It’s going to take more time. Advertising is expensive, so it costs more money. One of the things that our clients do, our top strategies for growing and adding doors is to do the unscalable things. For example, something that usually people try to do to grow the business is they go and get referrals from other people, from real estate agents, for example.

They try and just say, hey, if you ever run into somebody that needs property management, refer them to me. Here’s the problem. The best prospects, the people that actually might need property management, most of them are not looking for property management. They’re not going to go up to a real estate agent and say, hey, I need a property manager. That just doesn’t happen.

Usually, by the time they do think they need a property manager, they’re in a world of hurt, they’re in a crappy situation, something you won’t even want to take on. Then you’re getting the garbage, so then they’re connecting you to the garbage that exists in the marketplace and the biggest problems. The best clients are people that don’t even yet know they need property management, capturing them way earlier in the sales cycle before they become price-sensitive, and you’re the first person they’ve heard of or talked to related to property management. Maybe that’s a better idea.

You’re closer, it’s going to be a lot higher. There’s a lot more trust in that relationship, and that’s going to be more effective than doing cold leads and spending time prospecting directly to potential investors, for example, where the close rate is typically really low like maybe 1 out of 10 or worse. Why not create an outbound prospecting program towards real estate agents?

This is one of the things that we share in our program of how to make that really effective and how to create the right incentives so that people are actually referring business to you. Without going into too much detail, it’s all about creating more depth and connection on a one-on-one individual basis with potential referral partners.

Other people are like, hey, I’m going to go present to a whole real estate morning office meeting, high leverage, lots of people, and you’re going to talk to all these people in pitch, and then guess what happens? They’re all looking at their phones, nobody thinks about you, and you never get a referral. But hey, you got to talk to a lot of people. It sounds very scalable, high leverage.

We want to focus on what is unscalable. That would be the personal one-on-one interactions with each of those agents. That would be the goal. I would love to meet with each of you individually, let’s set up a time, and connect with them and create a deep, personal, and more intimate relationship and connection, that’s where you make more money because it’s the thing people are not willing to do.

Let’s talk about online reviews, for example, a great strategy for growing your business. A lot of people will just use something like tools like our GatherKudos tool, they’ll use something like Birdeye, or some sort of system where their goal is like, hey, we’ll just send out emails, text messages, or whatever. What I teach in our program, in our Training Reputation Secrets is if you do warm personal outreach, you’re going to create a lot more reviews.

It’s not scalable, but you get a much bigger result. Is it worth the time investment? Is it worth the additional staff and resources you might need to implement that strategy? Absolutely. And you will crush your competition. There’s a lot of other stuff that I talk about in Referral Secrets of how to make that really effective, how you can set it up so it increases retention rates with your clients, et cetera.

The general principle in each of our most effective growth strategies is to do the unscalable things, and that’s what scales companies. If you want to grow your business right now, take a look at what are you trying to do right now that is a scalable version, a scalable solution? Like you’re trying to hit a lot of people through some sort of email newsletter where you got a list of thousands of people. Or are you trying to just go and throw out an advertisement on Facebook or Google ads where you’re trying to just hit tons and tons of people and get lots of eyeballs?

What if you went in the complete opposite direction and you did something that was the most personal, the most intimate, the most connecting way of reaching out and creating relationships with people in order to achieve the same result? What if you went the complete opposite direction and then you started to build and scale your systems related to doing more of that? Which means hiring more people instead of more technology and automation.

I have a friend, one of my mentors. He has a business that does a lot in revenue—really, really big company. I believe they do like $100 million a year in their business. It’s ridiculous. He has really savvy skills, is a really great marketer, great with technology, and yet, he could automate his whole sales process. He can’t have a funnel, have videos, and all this stuff, yet he has a really large sales team. Why? Because that’s what’s most effective to get to that level of revenue.

He has a large sales team of setters and a large sales team of closers because it’s the most effective. It’s more effective than having a funnel, a video webinar, and trying to automate all this stuff. And you’ll hear lots of people saying you’re just one funnel away, you just need this marketing piece, if you just do a newsletter, or just do social media. These are all scalable solutions. They’re scalable. You can get people in place, you can hit a lot of people really quickly.

Scalable solutions can be effective. Some of them can be effective. But in general, if your business isn’t growing, I’m guessing you’re already doing some of these “scalable things”, but you’re not doing the unscalable things. What are the unscalable things that none of your competitors are doing? Are they doing warm personal outreach with every new tenant and every new owner to get a review?

Are you doing warm personal outreach with every real estate agent, lender, handyman, attorney, lawyer, anyone that helps investors in your market to create a referral relationship and partnership with them? Probably not. That’s not scalable. We don’t want to do that. Let’s go do advertising. And yet the companies that are doing advertising right now, they’re usually spending about $300–-$5000 a month, and they’re probably down about 200 doors over previous years.

If you have between 600–1000 doors, my guess is you’ve lost maybe about 200 over the last year because you’re not doing the unscalable actions that are more intimate. So focus on greater depth and greater connection. That’s really what property management is. It’s a business of connection, depth, and relationships.

People are trying to turn it into a business of automation, technology, and tools. I do like technology, don’t get me wrong. I do recommend that you use and create leverage where you can technologically, however, if you want the biggest result when it comes to getting referrals, with getting reviews, with getting on more deals, the more personal approach and the more depth is going to be the most effective strategy, and nobody else is doing it.

This allows you to create market share while everybody else is fighting over this red bloody water where everybody’s trying to spray and pray and hope they’re going to get some sort of return on their advertising dollars. Stop falling prey to marketers that are just selling advertising. What I teach is to do the right actions and you will spend less time than you would dealing with cold leads, and it costs you $0.

I had a client today on our coaching call, a really cool guy, Michael Sullivan. He was talking about how he added eight properties in the last 24 hours. His phone is ringing, he said, constantly. And I said, how are you doing? He’s just doing the strategy that I told him to do and doing this outbound method. I said, how many thousands of dollars in marketing have you spent to get on all these doors that you’re adding right now?

He looked really confused because it was a loaded question. But he looked really confused and he was like, I don’t understand what you’re saying. And I said, you’ve spent $0 in advertising, correct? And he said, oh, yeah, $0. How many of you are spending $0 and you’ve added eight properties just in the last 24 hours and your business is growing really fast?

Another client showed up, he had added 13 doors. Another client showed up and said he added eight doors on that call. This is a weekly call, weekly check-in. How many doors have you added this week?

If you’re not adding doors as quickly as you want to, and you don’t trust me enough to come into my program and let us help you, that’s cool, but start just focusing on what’s the least scalable thing I could do. It’s probably that thing you’re avoiding. Maybe it’s too personal, maybe it’s uncomfortable, go do that thing. What you’ll find is your business will start to grow really rapidly.

Anyway, if I can help you go faster, focus on the unscalable things in business. The reason I want to talk about this today is it keeps coming up for me. I get questions all the time. Even a client today is like, how do I leverage this list I have of 4000 emails. I’ve got this other list of this. Again, what I taught him was to figure out what’s the least scalable thing you could do.

What everybody else would do is do a newsletter. He says, I’m doing a newsletter. How often? Every week. Cool, are you using a system to do that? Yes, MailChimp. Okay, cool. In MailChimp, what are your stats on the open rate? 10%. That’s email, right? It’s scalable, but it’s really […] results, 10% open rate? That means 90% are not even opening the email.

The challenge there is I said, cool, what if you took all of those email addresses of different either investors or real estate agents on your list and you send out a personal email to each individual one? You did like maybe 50 a day or whatever your email system, but you do it from your personal email account, not from an email system, and just reached out to them and said, hey, how are things going with your rental properties?

Hey, do you need anything from me today? Or hey, would you be interested in getting a call to find out how I could get you some more real estate commission because I have this cool new program? These kinds of things, like if it was to a potential referral partner. Give them a Calendly link or something to schedule with you and that sort of thing. That’s the kind of conversation. How can you take this thing you’re trying to do that’s not really working, but it’s very scalable and do the unscalable thing?

Even if it’s a little bit of that, you’re going to get a much bigger return on that time investment, and you don’t have to spend a whole bunch of time drafting up a big newsletter. Just do a little bit of outreach with a really short one-sentence email and you may start getting some real responses and initiate some conversations.

It keeps going back to this. My own mentors, every method that I tend to hear or see that works, it’s always going back to what’s the least scalable thing. It’s not, how can I do this with less people? It’s, how can I do this with more? You can sometimes double your close rate like I talked about on a previous podcast episode, just by getting a setter involved. That’s adding more people.

Having a setter and a closer increases the conversion rates and increases the close rates, even though it’s more people and you’re spending more money on staff. But a lot of people are looking for a way, how can I decrease the need to talk to people or how can I systemize this or how can I automate it or leverage technology?

I hope this was a helpful conversation. Do the unscalable things. The unscalable things are where you show care. It’s where you invest in people. It’s where you’re human. It’s where you love people. This is where you build relationships.

I think it was Grant Cardone, he said, “The difference between a contract and a contact is the R, and that’s relationships.” Focus on making relationships and you’re going to get a lot more contracts. This is what most business owners and businesses are unwilling to do. If you do it, you’re going to have results that other businesses are unable to achieve. That’s my message for today.

I hope this is helpful for those of you. If you want a little bit more help, if you want some accountability, if you want some new ideas, if you want to inject some life into your business, reach out to DoorGrow. We’d be glad to help you. This is my passion. This is what I love to do. I love coaching and supporting clients and helping them grow their companies.

My goal is to turn you into the entrepreneur that can have the business of your dreams. If you don’t have the business of your dreams right now, one of my mentors would say, you’re not yet the person that can run it yet. So let’s turn you into that person. Reach out to us, check us out at doorgrow.com, or join our Facebook group doorgrowclub.com. We’ll get you to our community and that’s it. Until next time, to our mutual growth. Bye, everyone.

About Jason Hull

Jason's mission is "to inspire others to love true principles." This means he enjoys digging up gold nuggets of wisdom & sharing them with property managers to help them improve their business. He founded OpenPotion, DoorGrow, & GatherKudos.