Being a brand new wholesaler isn’t an excuse to not start marketing, and TV marketing is a great place to start. Adam Rothenfluh is a newcomer to real estate investing. Today, he joins Chris Arnold and Tony Javier on the show to walk us through his journey. He also talks about teaming up with Tony and how he uses television ads on top of other traditional marketing methods to generate leads. Tune in to learn what Adam was able to accomplish in his first 60 days of wholesaling through hard work and proper coaching.
If you are just starting out in real estate and looking into television as a way to elevate your business, then this is the episode for you!
How A Brand New Wholesaler Used Television To Generate $101k In Profits With Adam Rothenfluh
Adam Rothenfluh is a newcomer to real estate investing (just 6 months in!). Today, he joins us on the show to walk us through his journey. He also talks about teaming up with Tony Javier and how he utilizes television ads on top of other traditional marketing methods.
As always, we’re excited that you are with us. You guys know my style, come out straight and tell you what you’re going to get from the show. We brought TV on the scene. I have a lot of people asking me like, “Chris, we want to hear from people that have stepped into this TV world. What success did they see? Is it working? Is it not working?” What I find is you get few early adopters that are like, “I’m willing to go for this. I don’t need to see anyone else that’s done it.” There’s a good majority that kicks back a little bit and say, “I’m going to watch and see.” There’s nothing wrong with that at all. You want to make a calculated move. I have Adam Rothenfluh, and I got Tony Javier as well. What we’re going to talk about is Adam’s journey.
This is an interesting case study. I love what Adam said. He said, “Around Christmas of 2020, I didn’t know anything about real estate.” Now, he’s already launched his television, already closing deals. A lot of people always ask this about radio and particularly television. When I do other show, people are always like, “Isn’t this for the advanced person?” I always go, “No, it’s not.” If somebody has a marketing budget, you don’t have to sit around and do cold calling or text blasting. If you want to shift from the outbound prospecting more to the inbound marketing, there’s nothing that’s saying you can’t move that timeline up and go for it, and Adam’s done that. We’re going to walk through his story, his background, particularly around his numbers on TV, and what Tony has helped him accomplish in his first 60 days being live on television. Adam, welcome to the show.
It’s an honor to be here. I want to say thank you to you, Chris, and also to Tony and how much respect I have for you both and the whole Wholesaling Inc community and about you guys bringing to light these marketing channels that you have for us. You didn’t have to do it. You could have kept it all to yourself. Thank you for doing this and I appreciate you.
I appreciate that. Let’s jump into your story. Background, people want to know where you’re living, where you are doing deals out of. Give us the context geographically of where this story starts.
I’m right in the middle of California in the Central Valley, the town is Fresno. That’s where I’m at. What’s happened over the last several years is that I’ve watched my brother-in-law exit the rat race through real estate in the San Francisco Bay Area. I’m watching him flip and fix, buy and hold. Whatever made sense, I’ve watched him do it. He lived below his means while he did it, and now he’s reaping the rewards. I’ve been on the employee track the entire time. Going side by side with him, it’s been a great comparison. After the pandemic year, 2020, being an employee realizing that things can change for employees. We’re not always in control of our situation. I went to my brother-in-law and I said, “I’m ready to get involved with you. I’m ready to look into real estate.” He said, “What you can do is bring me deals.” I had no idea what that meant.
What does that mean? It sounds clear, but how do you do that?
How in the world am I going to bring you a deal? I don’t have any connections. I’m not involved at all. What he had done, for many years, was he purchased most of his properties at the auction. For those that know, a lot of the auction stuff is drying up or they’re just not as lucrative as they once were. He needed a way to get deals. He said, “That’s the way we can work together.” I came away from that meeting, not wanting to ask what a deal is, how do I even do that. I said, “I’ll go home and try to figure this out.” Luckily, about a week later, this was around Christmas time. My wife was watching a real estate seminar on Facebook. I was watching over her shoulder and I heard somebody describe what wholesaling was and how that works. I said, “That’s what he was talking about. This is what I need to get involved in.”
At that point, you have to figure out, “How in the world am I going to rapidly educate myself in this process?” What was the first step that you took?
I’m a podcast junkie at heart. I immediately downloaded all of the wholesaling podcasts that I could get my hands on and very quickly, I realized that Wholesaling Inc was the best one, at least for me. The information that was being brought forth, the coaches, it’s such a go-giver mentality and community. Every coach that’s on there is giving out so much free information. I was hooked on that podcast right away. It took me about two weeks to realize I needed to get into the Wholesaling Inc. Beginner’s Course, which it’s Rafael Cortez’s course.
Rafael’s course is Wholesaling Blueprint.
They’re calling it the Business Blueprint course now. I got into that right at the beginning of 2021. I had no idea what a VA and dialing software was. I had no idea what any of this was. I just jumped in. Thanks to that course, he lays it all out for you. He helps you get all the software up and going to CRM, how to cold call, all the things to get started out and the traditional way of doing it these days. I got into the course, he got me going. By March 2021, I had my first couple of deals. I’m doing it the traditional way with the cold caller, buying the lists, organizing all that information, and everything like that.
I got a couple of deals under my belt. That was around my area. That was in my backyard because I knew I couldn’t just jump into the Bay Area, which is one of the most competitive markets. That’s where my heart was. I wanted to do something with my brother-in-law in the Bay Area, but I knew with my skill level being zero, there was no way I could jump into these cold calling there and tried to compete with everyone else. I did some stuff in my backyard, continuing to listen to the podcast religiously. I was listening to an audiobook, Never Split the Difference, the Chris Voss negotiating.
I was away from the podcast for a week. I remember it vividly. I was doing yard work. It was a Saturday morning and I heard the podcast, probably a week or two after you guys aired it with you and Tony. You were introducing Tony and the TV program. The light bulb went off like, “This is the way that I can get into a hyper-competitive market with very little skill level.” I saw the light. I called Tony right away. I had to convince him that I was all in being a new investor and not having a lot of skills on the acquisition end but we had a good conversation, and the rest is history.
Also, you’re married, you have two kids. You’re working a 9:00 to 5:00. Give a little context, because depending on what people have going on in their lives, that can make this journey a little bit more difficult to balance all of that type of stuff. Talk a little bit about your family and your personal life.
My motivation is to create some freedom for my kids and us. Obviously, we all want to give our kids the best and things of that nature. That’s the motivation behind this. I still have a full-time job. I was doing everything I could between the hours of 4:00 and 7:00 every day. I’m doing my cold calling before I got cold callers, trying to figure this whole thing out. As most entrepreneurs know, things are going to be out of balance before you get them in balance. I’m still trying to get my business in balance. I still got my child banging on the office door. I still got all the other responsibilities. I see all your coaches and people that have families and young families, you guys are doing it and you’re figuring it out. It’s very inspirational to see that.
Tony, this is interesting. You get this call from Adam, newer to the game, grinning, charging in, going, “Tony, I want to do TV.” What was the conversation that went down, Tony, on Adam coming you in convincing you like, “I know I’m new but I can make this thing work, give me a chance?”
It’s interesting because anybody who schedules a call with me or my team, they have to fill out an application. We want to make sure that we’re not jumping on a call with someone we don’t feel is ready or qualified. Adam applied, it pretty much been all experienced investors that applied, guys that are doing tons of deals, 50 deals, 100 deals, 100 plus deals a year. When I saw this application come through that said, “I’ve done no flips.” I thought, “I’m going to cancel this call. I don’t feel like they’re going to be right for it because they’ve never done a deal.” I’ve done coaching with people that have started out the real estate investing business. A lot of you guys probably know the statistics. When someone buys a product and gets into something, it’s typically a 1% success rate or less. One percent is probably generous. It’s probably way less than 1%. I’m thinking, “Do I want to handhold this guy through the whole process?”
Make sure that you’re not jumping on a call with someone you don’t feel is ready or qualified.
Anyway, I get on the phone with him, I take the call, and I loved Adam. He had good energy. He told me he was a Division 1 quarterback in college, which that by itself tells me like, “If anybody’s going to do this, it’s going to be this guy.” The toughest position I feel like in sports and he’s doing it at a high level, the commitment, the dedication you have to have to that. I played college football myself and I know what it takes. I’m thinking, “I’m going to give this guy a shot.” He was the first new investor that I got into the program. Fast forward, super easy to work with. I didn’t have to handhold a lot. I’d help him with his website and some things that I’ve got to help a new investor with.
After I’ve started seeing his results, the light bulb went off. He worked a program and he’ll tell you his results here. The first month, he crushed it in the most competitive and arguably the most expensive real estate market in the US. I’m glad I did it because it opened up my eyes. If other people are charging $20,000, $30,000, $50,000, $75,000, the most expensive program in my program was about a little over $100,000 to get into and you get no leads. You get a system, handholding. I’m like, “If Adam, a new investor can work this program, spent a fraction of the money that he would have on it on a high-level program, get leads to him right away.” It’s like, “Maybe I need to start letting new investors into the program.” I’m glad I let Adam into the program. He’s been a blessing. It’s been great to work with him. He’s now jumping into a second market here. He worked it. I’m glad that he jumped on board and he’s having success with the program.
We know Adam is a sales guy if he got in and convinced you to do it as well. I learned the same thing about radio. I assumed that radio was going to be for the high-level person. What I began to realize quickly through students coming through that have been in the business less than 24 months, they’re like, “We can do this.” At this point, I can speak for radio, say about 80% of our students have probably been in the business less than 12 to 24 months and they just rock radio. You’re going through the same evolution that I did where there’s an assumption that you got to be super seasoned to do this but you got a marketing budget. You don’t have to sit around and wait for five years as an investor to make this move. Adam, I want to get into the numbers. Everyone’s reading, going, “Break this down for me. How long you’ve been advertising? What’s the cost?” Let’s break this down. You have been live on radio in the Bay Area for how long now?
Today is June 4, 2021, our first ad ran on April 5, 2021. We are exactly two months in.
You meant TV right, Chris? Not radio.
Yes, I’m so used to say it. Tony always has to correct me. Thank you, Tony. Television for two months. With that, you said call volume-wise. You feel like you’re roughly getting about one call a day. Is that right?
Yes. The phone rings from the TV Ad about once a day. About half of those are very motivated sellers who are reaching out to find out what they can get for their property. Those are great. Obviously, you get a couple of people who may want to work with you or other radio stations or people reaching out to try to get business.
You’re a player now. They’re like, “This guy is advertising on TV again.” That’s what we call that instant credibility, that celebrity status that begins to snowball pretty quickly. You’re getting about one call a day. You’re finding those calls to be high quality. Same thing we experience on the radio side as well. What is your budget? Tony already said, “This guy is advertising one of the most expensive markets in the country.” How much are you paying per month for your television?
It’s about $9,000 a month for our television, which Tony can probably speak more to that but it’s probably the highest in the country in terms of geographical area.
It’s pretty expensive but I won’t argue that. I know people spending more than that on their current direct mails/cold calling, whatever they’re doing, PPC so it is high. In the grand scheme of things, it’s not like it’s $20,000, $25,000 a month, which I would consider to be hot. So far deal-wise, you’ve already closed your first deal been paid out. What was your profit on the first deal?
The first deal profit was $61,000 and that call came in. We started April 5, 2021 that call came in April 11, 2021. We started Monday. It came in Sunday night. It was the first.
You got to be feeling pretty good about that. Let’s do some quick math. If you’re spending $9,000 a month, two months is $18,000. You did a $61,000 profit deal, I’ll average that. If we do that math, Adam, that’s like a 1 to 5 return. Fundamentally, for every dollar you’re spending, you’re getting five times return on that. Here’s my question. The first deal that you did, people will want to know like, “What kind of deal was that?” Was that a wholesale deal? Did you do a fix and flip? What did that look like?
It’s a straight wholesale deal. Right now, I’ve only got one tool in my tool belt and it’s called the cash offer hammer. If I’m being honest, I’ve got two other deals in my CRM coming from TV that I don’t have the education on creative finance yet. I’m sure there are some other ways that I could make it happen. We’re either too far away on price or there’s some other things that I don’t have the skill level yet. I’m working hard to get my skill level up as an AQ Manager and figure this thing out. I don’t flip properties yet. I haven’t done any of that, but hopefully down the road.
On top of that, you have two pending deals. The total in the pipeline for that is $50,000. You’ve got a $20,000 deal and a $30,000 deal.
A typical wholesale. I was able to assign those right away. We’re just waiting for the escrow process to close.
Those already have a buyer on them in escrow waiting to close. If we add those numbers together, then that puts you at $101,000 in profit come just a couple of weeks down the road?
If you have that right mindset, you can’t go wrong with TV because the leads will be there.
Yes, I’m very happy with that, obviously. One thing to mention, too, when comparing side-by-side to the traditional way I’m doing things in my backyard, I’m spending 95% of my time on the traditional way. Buying lists, sorting lists, stacking lists, and managing my cold callers. Following up all the time that it takes to get something like that across the finish line compared to maybe 5% of my time in the virtual market with TV. That’s the part that I love. That’s true freedom for me.
In the market in which you live in Fresno, you’re doing cold calling, but then, you’re doing television in the Bay Area. If we’re looking at your cost per labor, the actual labor time that you’re putting in, you’re saying it’s 95-5, 95% of my actual time is going into my cold calling system, and only 5% of my time is going into TV. Is that right?
That’s right. If you were to look at my CRM, you would see 95% of the leads in there are from the traditional way of doing things that may take 10 to 20 touchpoints to get them close to a place where they’re ready to sell compared to 5% of the leads that are in there that came from TV that are already hot. You don’t even need to warm them up. They’re calling me. The babysitting, the following up, all the different touchpoints. You don’t need to go through as much of that. They might even be less than 5%.
I’m curious though. If I were in your shoes, would I be processing? The people that are reading are like, “Are you going to continue to cold call?” What conclusion do you start to come to when you find yourself in that much of a difference than in the sense of what is taking time? What are you processing at this point?
There’s a lot to process in that. That’s exactly what I’m thinking about because in the Bay Area market with the TV, I have a partner, and that’s my brother-in-law. We’re doing this together. We’re building up a company to acquire more real estate ourselves. In the local market that I’m in, it’s just me. That’s the money I’m living off of and the extra living expenses and things like that. I want to continue with it. I want to give this a good year to do a side-by-side case study. Take a look at it at the end of the year and say, “What do I want to do to invest with my marketing dollars and my time? Where can I make this the most efficient all the way around for my lifestyle?”
That’s an interesting place to be. I love your answer and that is, “I’m not going to make any quick decisions yet. I’m going to ride this thing out. I’m going to analyze the data after twelve months and figure out what’s best.” Taking a step back. Being on television, what are a couple of the characteristics you’re personally enjoying the most about TV? “What I like about TV is this at this point?”
It’s that time that I’m putting into it. It’s truly a set it and forget it system. Especially the way that Tony has the whole program set up. There weren’t a lot of deliverables for me. I didn’t put even a lot of man hours into getting the few bits of information and the commercial shot. Tony’s media buyer takes care of everything for you. It’s truly set it and forget it, which I love. I want to spend my time with my kids not stacking lists and making sure I’m following up on all of these CRM follow-ups that are coming from the cold calling and the texting and things like that. I know I’ve got to put in a big chunk of time on that to get a deal across the board. Where with TV, it’s a very minimal amount of time that I have to put in to get it across the board. I love that.
I know, Tony, one of the cool things about your program is it’s a done-with-you system. In this scenario, you’ve got a media buyer that’s going to come in and take a lot of the heavy lifting. Somebody like Adam, who’s got a lot going on, family, kids, launching new business, and managing cold calling, he can pretty much come in, pay for this thing and you guys are going to do most of the set-up.
That’s why our success rate is high. Chris, you and I probably have the two highest success rates in the country with programs. For us, a lot of it’s because we do a lot of the work for you. You talked about the media buying, we do the editing, the production, add a bit test to this. He’s got to get his logo and his domain, which he has a great domain, by the way. He has to shoot the commercial. If he doesn’t want to shoot the commercial, we can shoot the commercial. I do commercials for people all the time. I’ve done it for several years. I can go in the studio and pop out a commercial quickly. Our success rate of getting people on TV is pretty much 100%. There are 1 or 2 people in our program that have bought in and dragging their feet and not doing much. Other than that, everybody is getting on the air. It’s almost 100% success rate getting on the air, getting the program going, and getting leads.
The other side of it is the success rate of people getting a return on their money. The data is changing a little bit because now we’re getting to scale. Seventy percent of the people that are in this program, are getting a return on their money within 30 to 60 days. I’m not even counting long-term, the people that may not be getting quite the results that they need to. It might take them six plus months to start getting good results. We probably have one of the highest success rates because we do a lot of the work for you. You have to get us some information. You have to shoot the commercial, if you want to. Obviously, on the backend, we’re not going to do the deals for you. You’ve got to work the deals and work the leads to make it happen on the back end. We love that part of it. I love the fact that when I’m talking to someone and I get them into the program, I know there’s a 70% chance within the first 60 days, they’re going to start making money on our program.
Adam, you can tell us how long it took for you to get your first call. Literally, most people within a day or two are emailing us and saying, “We got five calls our first day. We got three calls our first day. We got ten calls our first three days.” With mass media, you would think it takes 3, 6 plus months to get traction. When I launched the program, I thought the same thing. I thought a small amount of people would get results up front. A lot of the people would get results three months plus down the road but they’re getting results within the first 30 to 60 days. Mostly it’s because of the formula we have for the TV commercial, the production, the ads we’re buying, and the spend. My media guy that’s been in it twenty plus years, that adds a ton of value to our clients. I can’t be happier with Adam and the clients that we have in the program that are doing well with that.
I do love that about you and I’s approach. The umbrella that you and I are under together, which brought us together is mass media. Mass media is television, it’s radio, and it’s billboards. It’s pretty cool to have a program that returns deals quickly. The one thing I have learned about students, and this is true about myself, I’m an entrepreneur, we’re extremely impatient. We want results fast. It so happens that mass media is one of those marketing channels that will pull in results pretty quickly. As soon as you go live on television or live on the radio, it’s the same for us. The call start coming in immediately. Most people that I find are doing deals literally in that same time frame, first 30 to 60 days as well. If you’re reading and you’re like, “This is interesting, I did want to know some additional testimonials or kick back and see how this is working out for people.”
Adam is an interesting case study for a couple of reasons. He’s brand new to real estate. That removes a lot of excuses in the minds of us that are reading this. He’s doing it in Cali. Not just California, which is a tough state, he’s doing it in the Bay Area, which is arguably, probably one of the top five most competitive markets in the country. Adam, for you to come out swinging like this and already showing these results. Even though I know this and Tony, you know this as well. As I do these interviews, I sit back and I’m like, “I’m listening. I know this, but I’m still inspired by this. This is cool.”
A lot of times, there are many things out there that aren’t working as well. As always, if TV is bouncing around your head and you’re like, “This might be the fit for me.” As I always tell you guys, find the channels that best fit you. Adam’s story is he was out mowing the yard and you heard it and you knew. You’re like, “TV is the thing for me.” If this is a channel that you’re interested in, as always, we would love be able to help you set it up. Go and book an interview. You can talk directly with Tony and his team. Go to RealEstateMastersTV.com/chris. Book a call and we’d love to help you out in any way we can.
Adam, last question here. If somebody is newer to the game and they’re like, “Can I go for it? Can I do this TV thing?” What would you tell that people reading? There’s a lot of fear there. Spending some additional money when you start speaking into the thousands. That’s not cheap. What would you tell someone that might be newer to the game that might go, “This Adam guy is getting me to rethink this thing?”
I would draw it back to what you always say, Chris, about being willing to pay for speed and being impatient as an entrepreneur. I’m as impatient as it gets. I didn’t want to wait around or figure out how many years it was going to take me to be good enough to get into that market. I knew this was the way to do it. I was willing to pay for the speed, jump in with two feet. If you have that mindset like I did, I don’t think you can go wrong with TV because the leads will be there. It’s up to you to be decent enough to get the deal across the board and I’m still learning. I’m such a rookie and trying to be as humble as I can and learn as much as I can. This is the way to get good solid leads right away coming right to you without a whole lot of the groundwork that goes into it. I encourage people.
Adam, thank you so much for your time, willingness to come on, and sharing your story. If you look at all the dynamics of what makes up your story so far, I feel like there’s a lot that we can glean from, even your short journey. To the rest of you guys, as always, thank you for tuning in. We will catch you soon when we add more value.