RG 244 – The Complete Guide to Online Real Estate Syndication w/ Jacob Blackett

Reed Goossens
January 27, 2021
Jacob Blackett of Syndication Pro

Over the past few years there has been an explosion of crowdfunding sites combining with online investor portals & softwares to create a one-stop-shop for investors looking for CRACKING deals, but also providing syndicators a secure platform to onboard and communicate with their investors.

This week on the show I am chatting with the founder of SyndicationPRO.com, Jacob Blackett. Jacob saw a gap in the marketplace; Real estate syndication software was too bulky, complicated, and cost too much. SyndicationPro, the real estate syndication software company, was founded to provide more features to syndicators, better experiences to investors, in one all-encompassing platform.

We Deep Dive Into:

  • How to stand out from the competition when attracting investors and syndicators to the platform?;
  • The importance of alignment of interest between online syndication software and raising capital;
  • he evolution of one of the fastest growing industries within the real estate space.;

and much, much more.

So what are you waiting for?

Be Bold, Be Brave and Go Give Live a Crack!

Listen to Podcast

Podcast Transcript

Jacob Blackett (00:35):

Uh, your typical crowd funding site is more, more of a middleman. So they’re getting their investor base. They’re finding the sponsors and operators and they’re kind of acting and it’s middleman type approach. And so through the years, I think when people considered and registered for us and started learning about Holdfolio, they, they learned that there was no middleman, you know, it’s our deals. Uh, and so that was probably our biggest competitive advantage and something that really resonated with people is that, uh, they didn’t have to think about all these different operators and, and kind of that, uh, any deal that you invest in it’s as important, maybe more important, probably more important. The operator, the people behind the deal

Reed Goossens (01:53):

Good day. Good day, ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to another cracking edition of investing in the U S podcast from Los Angeles. I’m your host, Reed Goossens good as always every with us on the show. Now, I’m glad that you’ve all tuned into learn from my incredible guests and each and every one of them are the cream of the crop here in the United States when it comes to real estate, investing, business, investing, and entrepreneurship. Each show, I try and tease out their incredible stories of how they have successfully created the businesses here in the U S how they’ve created financial freedom, massive amounts of cashflow, and ultimately create extraordinary lives for themselves and their families – life by design, as I like to say. Hopefully these guests will inspire all of my cracking listeners, which are you guys to get off the couch and go and take massive amounts of action.

Reed Goossens (02:40):

If these guys can do it. So can you now, as you know, I’m all about sharing the knowledge with my loyal listeners, which is you guys, and there’s absolutely no BS on this show, just straight into the nuts and bolts. Now, if you do like this show, the easiest way to give back is to give us a review on iTunes. And you can follow me on Facebook and Twitter by searching at Reed Goossens. You can find the show, every podcast on iTunes, SoundCloud, Stitcher, and Google play, but you can also find these episodes up on my YouTube channel. So head over to Reed goossens.com, click on the video link, and it will take you to the video recordings of these podcasts, where you can see my ugly mug, but the beautiful faces of my guests each and every week. All right, enough of me let’s get cracking and into todays show.

Reed Goossens (03:28):

Today I have the pleasure of speaking with Jacob Blackett now Jacob and his original business partner. We’re back on this show way back in episode 93, I very highly recommend going and checking that out and giving it a listen to what they were doing then. And now we have him back on the show by himself. Um, and for those people who don’t know who Jacob is, Jacob is a real estate sponsor, and he’s a software entrepreneur who currently owns and manages over 1100 multi-family units across a portfolio worth over $190 million. He currently focuses on multi-family and specializes in online syndications, which is what we’re going to talk to him today about. Um, but he’s most passionate about creating profitable partnerships and ways to innovate through automation and technology and creating simple systems and structures in order to be more profitable for his investors and his portfolio. So really excited to have him on the show today by himself. He’s no longer with, uh, with his business partner. We’re going to talk a little bit about that, but you know, nothing, nothing major, but, uh, I’m really excited to have him on the show and I’ll get him out of here in a minute. But, um, but nothing to me, that’s gonna make him get a Jacob, welcome to the show how you doing today, mate?

Jacob Blackett (04:31):

I’m doing well. Thanks Reed.

Reed Goossens (04:33):

Mate. I just mentioned that we had you on the show back in episode number 93, we were at 220 now or something. So that’s over two and a half years ago. Um, and we you’re originally on with your business, your former business partner, Sterling White. So maybe you want to give a quick rundown what’s happened in the last two and a half years for the listeners.

Jacob Blackett (04:54):

Yeah, well, a lot, uh, two and a half years is a long time. Uh, even though, uh, even though it might not seem so a lot can happen. So really when, when we had caught last time Reed, we were focusing on single family homes as a, and building up a single family owned portfolio. We had purchased, I believe an apartment by that time one apartment. But, uh, since then we’ve pivoted, uh, to 100% multi-family, uh, acquisitions. We, uh, we continue selling our single-family homes and, and hope to be divested from those by the end of the year. Uh, and as you mentioned, um, my partner back from the starting of Holdfolio, um, Mr. Sterling White, uh, we, we went separate ways at the end of last year, uh, and, uh, luckily remain on great terms. Uh, we had five-year run together and it was amazing. Um, but you know, he’s, he’s definitely a person to sail his own ship and chase, you know, his own ambitions. And so we had a great run together.

Reed Goossens (06:03):

Yeah, it’s, it’s an interesting, um, thing, the evolution of partnerships and they, they always come to not necessarily an end, but they evolve and that’s, that’s how people grow. Right. And, and I think as confidence grows and as people listening to the show, as they start going out in the world of becoming an entrepreneur, particularly in the real estate space, you partner with people, but over time you grow like in you, you have different aspirations, you have different drives and that’s okay. Right. And it doesn’t have to be, um, all the partnership didn’t work. It’s one of the partnership and the work is just that we did ruin different directions and that’s, and you’re still remain friends today. And I think that’s really, really important for so many people out there. Is there any sort of lessons you can just, you know, a couple of top tips that you can give to the folks out there listening about making sure that you are okay with the evolution of partnerships?

Jacob Blackett (06:50):

Yeah. I think the going into any partnership with the mindset that you just laid out, the fact that we are evolving humans. And so we may be 100% on the same page today, but that doesn’t mean that as years and years progress, that you’re going to stay in sync. And so I think the most important thing, and what I learned about my partnership with Sterling over the years is that, uh, the reason I was attracted to working with him in the first place is that because is that he’s a go getter. You know, he, he is out there. He’s very extroverted. Uh, I’m more introverted. I’d rather kind of give me a spreadsheet, let me, let me analyze something. And, and let me stay behind the scenes. Sterling was, uh, kind of the opposite, you know, I’ll kind of I’ll do anything. Uh, it takes very motivational, um, and just an excellent person to, to be, to be in, grow a business with. And so, uh, so yeah, I think that one takeaway there is that we didn’t really over, we didn’t step on each other’s toes, uh, on many things. And, uh, and just being able to work with someone who’s open-minded and flexible. I mean, it’s, it’s a two way street. And so, uh, so yeah, we found a lot of success in that.

Reed Goossens (08:11):

Yeah, no, I want to just, I don’t want to dwell too much on partnerships. I know same similar type of scenarios happened with me and my business partner. And I think as the evolution of becoming an entrepreneur and I keep using that word evolution, I’ve got to stop, but as we evolve and grow as human beings in the beginning, there’s so many things to do, right. And you need that partner to come in, who is the yin to your yang, who is, who do, who does have complimentary skill sets? I know with my business partner and I, the reason we were attracted to one another was one, because we could both hustle, but two, we had complimentary skill sets and exactly the same as what you’ve just described. You think that I’m the outrovert and I am, but I actually do the numbers. I’m the, I’m the operations guy behind our operations that are bought on capital.

Reed Goossens (08:55):

And Andrew is his, he’s not in the details. And he’s more of the, I always said, you know, he shakes the tree or the lemon tree, and I determine if we make lemonade or lemon juice. And so, um, I just, I say that because I wanted to mirror back the fact that I’ve been in that situation, a lot of people have been in that situation. And you need to, when you come into partnerships, you do it in order to distribute the workload, because it is easier to have two bums in seats than just one. Right? And I think as you grow, you see your different strengths and weaknesses, and then you ultimately golf and, and pursue other things in the future. And that’s okay. And that’s, and so many people are, you know, I, I talk about, um, my mentors are on this show as well, a lot.

Reed Goossens (09:39):

And the same thing happens with mentors. You will use them in partners, very similar departments. You will use each other as mentors, as partners for a period of time, but you will grow and that’s okay that in 10 or viable, 10 years time that you change. Um, because that is the, that is the evolution of business. And you have to be an entrepreneur, you know, reacting to that change and sort of surfing the wave. And if you stay stagnant, you’re going to get sucked out the back and you won’t ever grow. So, um, kudos to you guys for realizing where you’ve come from and where you need to go to.

Jacob Blackett (10:08):

Yeah, it was good. Uh, and you also acquire partners. Uh, I have a partner today and Holdfolio, Vanessa. She she’s amazing. She, uh, I’m very operational focused. And so one of my primary responsibilities was the overseeing our property management. We take a very hands-on approach. So we manage most of the properties. We own directly ourselves. We have a construction company, it’s, it’s a lot of moving parts. And, and so there was a point in time there where we started working together with Vanessa as a, as a more, uh, an employee, just a hired on employee role, but realized the value in talent there. And just having a plus rockstars on your team is just invaluable. So, uh, so I ended up making her partner in the company just to solidify, uh, solidify that relationship and, and it just so, so important to the company’s health.

Reed Goossens (11:05):

Yeah, no, I completely agree. And, um, so tell me how you’ve pivoted over the last couple of years into what you do today.

Jacob Blackett (11:11):

Yeah, there’s, there’s probably two, there’s two biggest pivots. Uh, number one, we stopped buying single family homes completely and started actually selling off that portfolio and focused on multi-family units. Uh, so we went from over the last few years, uh, zero multi-family to, well, I think we had one duplex, uh, to over 1100 units today. And, uh, that’s just been a breath of fresh air as our goal has always been recurring income and cashflow and having the, the scale and having, uh, the, all of the benefits of, multi-family, and financing, uh, just lenders want to want to write loans on these assets. Uh, so, so yeah, it’s, it’s been great. So that’s, that’s one big pivots asset class. Um, the second pivot for me is starting another business, a new venture. Uh, we through Holdfolio, Holdfolio It was really born because back in 2012 and 2013, the very first crowdfunding sites were coming online for real estate investing.

Jacob Blackett (12:24):

And this was because of the jobs act that was passed in 2012. And it was just catching my eyes, seeing these crowd funding sites, raising capital online, and just people being able to jump into a website and place equity into a, into a real estate deal. I thought that was fascinating. And so I had built that, built that up through Holdfolio from day one in terms of being able to raise money through the website and get commitments. And so that through time grew into a whole new business, a separate entity that, that I founded and just having a blast running, uh, today.

Reed Goossens (13:02):

And talk to me that, because it sounds like you’re doing a lot of stuff, a lot of moving pieces, you just mentioned, you’ve got your own property management. In-house you have your own construction, you have 1100 units, which is nothing to sneeze at, but also very you’re doing it very early on. Like I know we were over 2000 now and we still don’t know, I haven’t got that in brought that in-house yet. And we’re actually thinking more it’s coming when it comes to 3000 units. Um, probably in 12 months time that we would start to bring it in house just because you get the scale there. So, and then you add to that on top of that, you’ve got the technology side of it. So how do you manage all of those moving pieces and make sure that you are the master of one thing and not just a Jack of all trades?

Jacob Blackett (13:40):

Yeah, it, it comes down to a big, important piece to me is technology, uh, right. So there’s so many different, different tools and things we can use, but they’re really hone in and, and seeing, and finding things that work for you. Uh, for example, I use task management. That’s built into my inbox with G suite. So a lot of things today of course, are revolve around the inbox and just being able to manage that and have task and plan your days, right. And control your time. And, uh, also for example, you could sit in your inbox all day, uh, you can just sit there and just, just maintenance it and respond to things and, and find things to do. Um, but,

Reed Goossens (14:29):

And that’s what, and that’s what the majority of us do, right, is just literally sit on emails and just play gatekeeper to whatever comes through, but I interrupted you.

Jacob Blackett (14:37):

I still catch myself doing it, but, but really being able to batch email, for example, uh, like just, just leave it alone for an hour or two, come back to it and then just focus on, on just getting those replies and then, and then go away from it again, you know, and, and focus on those projects and those, those high level tasks that are going to move you forward in life. So, uh, and in business. And so that’s been very important to me, uh, in, in the real estate business. Uh, it was important to be able to streamline our capital raising and our investor relationships. So we have, uh, 18 partnerships that we manage today. Uh that’s, you know, that’s a lot of different deals, a lot of different investors, it’s over 600 investments. Uh, and so you, you have a lot of things to do from updates and, and taxes, and, when you’re raising capital in the first place, uh, having a place to streamline that. And, and so, um, so yeah, that’s, that’s my answer. And being able to delegate, right. Uh, it’s, it, 100% comes down to the people that you’re able to attract and work with in the business. And so it just wouldn’t be possible without great partners. Uh, and, and just a plus team that’s working on it.

Reed Goossens (16:04):

What’s your philosophy on attracting the right type of partners in employee, because that’s such a big piece. And particularly as young companies where the revenue, you talk about recurring revenue, and it sounds like you’re controlling as much of it as you can with 1100 units, which I think is very, very key for those people listening out there that instead of paying the two and a half or 3% asset manager, a property management fee somewhere else, it’s, it’s now coming direct to Jacob and his team. But at what stage did you think, okay, I’ve got enough runway here to bring on a couple employees to help me scale, because you talk about the delegation piece that you can’t be when you got what sounds like four different re re revolving businesses, the, property buying the assets, the assets themselves, you’ve got the property management construction, and you’ve got the technology piece. There has to be a come a point where you’re like, okay, let’s like, let’s put our big boy pants on. And at what stage were you when you decided to double down and say, okay, I’m going to bring on some employees. I’m going to bring on some people, because I know that I’m investing in the business for the longterm.

Jacob Blackett (17:05):

Yeah. So my experience, uh, I had the fortunate ability to work in a property management company when I was straight out of college. And so I had a lot of experience in the trenches, this property management company had a thousand single family homes that they’re managing. There was a lot going on. And, and, uh, and for whatever reason, I don’t even remember contemplating this thought, but when I, when I started building my own buy and hold portfolio, I just did it myself. I, you know, I, I had, I knew all of them. I knew all the moving pieces, um, early on, I just did it myself. You know, I’m young hungry, I’m working from, you know, eyes awake to, eyes shut basically, and just loving it. And so, so early on I did everything, uh, and, and with my partner, uh, Sterling, uh, we, we delegated between the two of us.

Jacob Blackett (18:03):

And then I think our first hire came when we had a portfolio of about 50, about 50 single family homes. We went ahead and hired a, a leasing slash property manager in house, and kind of just scale it up from there, really from a property management perspective, uh, we didn’t really cash or make money from property manager. We still don’t really, uh, it’s, it’s certainly covers its expenses, but any profit is really negligible, uh, for us, it’s, it’s really just about control. Uh, we just, we just had, had some experiences with third party management. Um, you can do it 100%. You can find good third party management. I’m not gonna say that’s impossible, but it’s not an easy task. And, uh, and we just felt like, we just felt like, uh, no one, no one was going to manage those properties. Like, like we were going to.

Jacob Blackett (18:58):

And, and, and also, um, the, the type of asset class that we were purchasing early on, uh, it, it was, we were purchasing in, in working class areas. You would consider C, C minus areas where you can definitely find good tenants. Uh, but you’ve got to filter through a lot, you know, it’s, it’s not, it’s not easy management. Uh, and so, uh, on some of our nicer properties, it’s way easier to have a third-party manager. Cause, you know, there’s, it’s, it’s not as much of the management tasks, but on those kind of lower end properties where, when you’ve got a potentially higher crime or, or just, you, you’ve got to, you’ve got to really go through 20, 30 applicants to get a good one. And you’ve got to be really stringent. Um, and with the single family homes, having them all over town and, and trying to cut down on, on paying third-party vendors and those upcharges, just trying to keep an eye on margins. Uh that’s you know, that’s kinda what drove us to doing all of that ourselves. So it’s just kind of crazy thinking back on it, but, um, but yeah, that’s what we did.

Reed Goossens (20:06):

And how what’s the company look like today? Like how many employees do you have across those four different business verticals or call them, um, and how, how, where is it? Where’s it going? What do you want to grow it to?

Jacob Blackett (20:18):

Yeah, yeah. We have, uh, between 12 and 14 individuals actually hiring, uh, for our position now. Uh, but there’s two, two key principals, myself and Vanessa. And then underneath that we have, um, most of it’s related to property management. So we have anything, you know, from those, those, uh, leasing agents and maintenance personnel onsite, uh, personnel, uh, and, um, yeah, so kind of a small, small knit team.

Reed Goossens (20:51):

Yeah, but I think it’s still, it’s impressive that you brought that in house enabled to do that across, you know, 1100 units. So I think it’s, it’s, it’s awesome. So now when we pivot to the, the online syndication platform, so we’ve spoke a little bit in the green room before we press record here that, um, you’d experienced back in the day, these online platforms that were, seemed to be very, and in my experience as well, my view of the space back in 2012 to 2016, was a ton of people coming up to market with these online crowdfunding platforms that seem, at least in my layman’s opinion, have gone away in recent years.

Reed Goossens (21:56):

I don’t know if you would agree with that. So how have you made yourself different in order to attract the more customers to use your platform in order to be the best in the biz, if you can.

Jacob Blackett (22:09):

Yeah, I think, I think, um, since we were so early to raise money online, we did get lumped into the category of crowdfunding site. Uh, your typical crowd funding site is more, more of a middleman. So they’re getting their investor base, they’re finding the sponsors and operators and they’re kind of acting and it’s middleman type approach. And so through the years, I think when people considered and registered for us and started learning about Holdfolio, they learned that there was no middleman, you know, it’s our deals. Uh, and so that was probably our biggest competitive advantage and something that really resonated with people is that, they didn’t have to think about all these different operators and, and kind of that, uh, any deal that you invest in it’s as important, maybe more important, probably more important, the operator, the people behind the deal, uh, the deal metrics make sense.

Jacob Blackett (23:08):

You’ve got to vet that the deal makes sense that resonates, but it’s really the people that are going to make or break that. Uh, and so I think that’s, that’s what, uh, early on people, liked about what we’re doing from an investor perspective. And, and as I mentioned, we had built out our own site to raise capital and streamline these processes. Uh in-house, actually what the web development company, I spent so much time and money, uh, doing this. This is crazy. Uh, and it was actually an early 2018 that I started learning about investor portals and, and software that wasn’t available for this. And when I first, first kind of saw those options, I was thinking, you know, it’s time that I check this out. Um, maybe it’s maybe it’s time to get off the home-baked site. Um, there’s something, something better here.

Jacob Blackett (24:04):

So I took some demos and, and it was interesting, actually, it, I, after the demo, I felt like what I, what I had was shown and what I saw was, was really kind of bulky, uh, complicated. Like I was on the call for an hour, and I still felt like there were things I was looking at that didn’t make sense. Um, and it felt like a lot and in the price tag was, was pretty crazy too. Right. So, uh, so that’s where I kind of scratched my head and I looked at what we had built already. And I was thinking, you know, I like this. I like what we have here. And so, um, it was around the same time that I kept having colleagues ask me, Hey, how do we build what you’ve built, basically, how do we raise money online without paying this huge price tag to this investor portal.

Jacob Blackett (24:54):

And, and so, um, I pitched the owner of the web development company, and, and said, Hey, I’ve got, I’ve got colleagues and friends who are looking for the solution. Uh, I’ve just demoed kind of the industry leaders. And I think that, I think that what we built already is, has some really unique advantages. And I think that we could Polish this up and have a pretty interesting go, uh, pretty, pretty interesting business model. So, so we polished up the corners. We launched a beta version, onboarded, friends and colleagues, and kept things quiet. And, and it went really well on. I think that the thing that we continue to focus on is, is ease of use, uh, simplicity. Uh self-service so it’s really, I think what the feedback that we continue to get from, from new clients is that they, they sign up, they start using it, it’s intuitive, they feel empowered by the software, right. I mean, that’s the best thing you can do is deliver a product that, that people, uh, can easily use. And, and, um, and so I think that’s our, our biggest competitive advantage in the marketplace. And, and, uh, it’s been, it’s been going really well. I have a knack for technology and systems and automation and, and it’s just really fun.

Reed Goossens (26:19):

That’s awesome. I think that’s, uh, well, kudos to you mate, for taking the plunge, because it is a, we use an online platform right now, uh, and it’s been a bit clunky and growing pains and all that sort of stuff. So I know where you come from when it’s, when you’re trying to get that user interface to be really seamless, because trust me there, ain’t no time like testing out a user interface when you got a live deal and things have gone wrong and it links don’t work.

Jacob Blackett (26:45):

Yeah. And I think that’s the other thing is, uh, I, since I had been personally raising money online for seven years now,, and over 18 deals and 600 investments, uh, I I’ve heard from the investor right. When, when they, something didn’t make sense or they didn’t know what the next step was. And, and so over this entire period, that’s what the platform reflects that it provides an experience where investors aren’t calling you. They’re not asking questions. They’re not confused. Uh, we’re supposed to, we’re supposed to fund now, or we’re not supposed to fund, or you, you know, I can’t find the, can’t find the investment or having trouble gaining access. Like those are, those are all things that, that you want to avoid. You want, you want just a nice seamless experience, uh, for the investor and the sponsor.

Reed Goossens (27:36):

And I think at the end of the day, people are so expectant of that right now. Like I know, you know, making sure that it works on, it might work on a laptop, but it might not work on your phone yet. Your mobile for the mobile phone app hasn’t been developed. So like, but people are trying to sign these things on the fly. So it’s, it’s been very, I’ve been at the coalface as well, working with our, the group that we use, making sure that every single deal is getting better and better and better and easier and easier and easier for our investors because you don’t want clunky technology as your forefront or for facing, I should say, image of your business. And it’s good. It’s clunky. They’re going like, Oh God, imagine this is clunky. Imagine what the deal is going to be like, you know what I mean?

Reed Goossens (28:15):

So it’s already that subconsciousness of making sure everything is seamless from the beginning. So you can have that image of that you’re professional and you’re up-to-date, and that takes work, right. It doesn’t just snap your fingers. And I’ve learned very quickly through coding that I’m not a coder, but when you ask for something to be done, you’re like, yeah, that can, can you just fix that? Like now, like hurry up. Like, it doesn’t just happen overnight. And, uh, and that’s, that’s a, that’s been a definite learning curve for me as a, as a sponsor.

Jacob Blackett (28:43):

I was just going to mention, I think one thing that I’m proud of is that we have remained so agile in our development process and, and our team just continues to surprise me, uh, with how quick, uh, we’re able to do something like we are working on so much at any given point in time. Our team is like just, you know, kind of, uh, stressed out and crazy. But when, when there is a little something that wasn’t working as expected, uh, and, and it just is fixed, you know, within an hour. I just, I just love that, uh, experience for, for our clients as well. You know, I just customer service first.

Reed Goossens (29:25):

And so with the online raising portion of it, are you going through any regulations with the sec? Like how are you making sure you’re compliant on that side?

Jacob Blackett (29:33):

Yeah, we, we provide the tools to, uh, to help guide you depending on how you’re raising capital. So of course, the two most popular 506C and 506B and reg D exemptions. And so the software is, is very, uh, is very helpful depending on how you’re raising your money to help guide you. Um, we don’t necessarily tell you like, Hey, these are what you can’t do. This is what you can do. Um, but we, we provide the, the automations and the tools. Uh, we know how it’s supposed to go, that the platform was built with securities attorneys. Uh, and so it’s, it’s all there, but we’re not going to proclaim that hey, raise money on the software and you’ll be compliant. Uh, cause a lot of intricacies.

Reed Goossens (30:20):

There are, there are there, but I guess from a business point of view, has that, has that gone for you? Making sure you are as quote unquote compliant from providing the tools to capital raises or to, uh, sponsors in order to be that you’re not stepping on over the line to the sec and all that sort of stuff, but I’m sure that in itself would have just been complex.

Jacob Blackett (30:39):

Yeah, quite honestly, the, the biggest consideration and something that is the most important thing on our perspective is security making sure that investors and sponsors are signing in, in a fashion that is secure through two factor authentication, uh, making sure that it’s end to end encryption. There’s a lot of, there’s a lot of personal information, important information. And so we take, we take the same steps as banks do, uh, to ensure security. And so that was really a starting point, uh, for the platform. And then, uh, from a compliance perspective, uh, like I mentioned, I’ve personally done 18 syndications and, and we have now a few billion dollars being managed on the platform. Uh, and so yeah, there, there’s definitely the tools there to make sure that you’re verifying accreditation, if you need to, or investors or self accrediting, um, or you’re, you’re verifying that you have relationships and you have track record of their relationship, right? Like, like the audit of, of all every, every single step. So that if you were ever in that position that you had to say, yeah, we had a relationship, uh, it would be easy, easy to do that. Easy to prove that case.

Reed Goossens (31:58):

How do you think the, with COVID and the future of this sort of online crowdfunding is going to evolve to, do you think this is now the new norm? Because I know years ago when I started doing real estate syndications, they, we didn’t have portals, so it’s a relatively new technology. And do you think it’s going to be around for the longterm?

Jacob Blackett (32:16):

Yeah. It’s, it’s new you’re right. Um, and, and it’s what we’ve seen as rapid adoption. Uh, any, anyone who has raised a dollar offline and raises that money online, it’s, it’s a, it’s a shift, it’s a paradigm shift, uh, in terms of just realizing the power, the time savings, the customer service, it’s, it’s a 100% here to stay. I don’t think it’s going anywhere. Just, there’s a lot of growth though. There’s a lot of adoption still to be had.

Reed Goossens (32:49):

Right. And it’s like the, uh, the crowdfunding has all the crowdfunding sites that seem to be pivoting to portals now. Right. And so, so does your portal have any of the SEO stuff built into it to attract investors because you spoke about white labeling before, which is really what you were talking about. I know some of the big companies out there, um, do it, I think it’s crowd street, one of the sales and sales of white label product. Um, do you integrate with the sponsor’s website or do you have a sort of standalone website that everyone’s going to come to and sign up? And then the second question is, do you, do you have a system on the backend to help the sponsors with the SEO part, you know, drive more traffic to their website in order to see the past deals or whatever it might be if they’re raising through 506 C for Charlie, which you can advertise on?

Jacob Blackett (33:36):

Yeah, it’s, it’s a good question. Uh, number one, you want to provide a very, uh, a very natural experience from a brand perspective. So we give, uh, we give our users the ability to, uh, of course upload their logo and, and have that feel, uh, so that when someone’s coming from your site and your brand, and now they’re logging in, it’s, it’s really seamless. Uh, it doesn’t feel like, Oh, I’m using this different, you know, what’s going on here. It’s, it’s really a seamless solution. And we continue to develop more kind of, uh, more tools and ways to go about making that even more seamless. So that’s definitely one thing we focus on and just try and make it feel, uh, as much as part of your brand and your company and your website as possible. And then when it comes to SEO and, and, uh, which is really coming into the marketing side, uh, we, we make the tool and the CRM built in so that it, so that it can integrate with many other tools, uh, so that it’s marketing friendly. Uh, and w we continue to build that out with, with that in mind, knowing, uh, knowing what it’s like to attract investors and, and get your brand out. Uh, we’re taking that one step at a time in terms of making that more and more friendly, uh, and, and getting more of those optimizations. But, but we don’t, we don’t provide any marketing services ourselves.

Reed Goossens (35:08):

Got it. Is there any future where that would be a tool in your belt?

Jacob Blackett (35:13):

I think certainly we’ve been working with, uh, some marketing providers, uh, who, who work with people to attract and acquire investors. And so they’ll probably, they’ll probably be something in the line of a strategic relationship with a firm that, that we believe in has a really good track record, and is familiar with syndication pro and the tools and where it fits in the funnel. Um, but, but yeah, we probably won’t get into that ourselves.

Reed Goossens (35:45):

Right. No, I think, and I think it’s an interesting business angle, right? It’s combining the two where you really want you talk about raising money online. Well, let’s talk about raising money online. Like you have to, you’ve got your existing investors now into a platform, which is great, but how do you get more people into the funnel and you do podcasting and books and branding and all that sort of stuff, but also having that SEO piece of it where it’s sort of a one-two punch with the portal and the SEO. I think it’s just, excuse me, it seems like a natural progression for most online portals that your clients, at least, I know I want to do it with, with mine, that like, that’s where the feedback and I’ve heard from other operators, that’s where they want to keep that funnel other than the tap turned on and then get all the leads that come to the website, but having some sort of funnel where they can sign up for an email list, they can sign up to see some few videos.

Reed Goossens (36:37):

They can get the email campaign going, the drip feed going, and then they can have a phone conversation, which also then goes back to helping with the, getting to know one another. And then they could look at like past deals, like there’s all these different ways in which you could use the online marketing tools. And it just makes it, it’s just, it’s, it’s a natural fit that the yin and the yang go make that yin and yang scenario where you’d bring that SEO part of marketing part into the portal part as well, or not in, but, but being at least a complimentary of one another.

Jacob Blackett (37:05):

Yeah, we, we do provide, uh, those mechanisms for people to sign up and opt in and, and kind of that really top of the funnel, uh, on the, on the first relationship. And then, and then, uh, automate things like scheduling that introduction call. Right. So if you’re meeting someone out of the blue, most naturally you’re probably looking to get in touch with them. And so we automate things like that as well within our CRM.

Reed Goossens (37:35):

Yeah. That’s awesome. Well, Mike, at the end of every show, we like to dive into the top five investing tips. You ready to get innto it?

Reed Goossens (37:41):

What is a daily habit you practice to keep on track towards your goals?

Jacob Blackett (37:53):

I have a hot sheet and it’s a note pad and, uh, it’s actually in Google Keep, and it lists out my highest value activities, what I’m grateful for, uh, and some value propositions. And, that’s something that I check into, try to check into every day to kind of get centered and, and, on the right page for the day.

Reed Goossens (38:19):

That’s awesome. Yeah. I think having the importance of having a one, the one thing, you know, in the day that you have to get achieved and not having 20, right? Because sometimes those 20 little activities don’t actually ever get fully resolved and then they just keep dragging on today two day three and day four, and then none of them get actually done by the end of the week. So being really methodical about understanding what is that one task that you need to get done everyday or a couple of tasks and get it done for the day and then move on to task Tuesday and to get another two tasks done. So I think people sometimes forget that, and I’m sure with your business mate, with all the ecosystem that you’ve created, there’d be a lot of moving pieces that you’d have to be very, very disciplined on. Question number two is who is the most influential person in your career to date?

Jacob Blackett (39:08):

Well, great question. Um, you know, the first person that might come to mind would be, um, probably probably Tim Ferriss, you know, um, I his kind of philosophies and I, and I caught on to them maybe close to four years ago. I think that was a big shift for me personally, in terms of thinking about how to control your time, how to, uh, empower partners and employees. Uh, I think that has been very, very influential.

Reed Goossens (39:49):

Yeah. And for those people who missed it, uh, there’s a glitch in the agent there, it was Tim Ferriss of The 4-Hour Work Week. Another book I can recommend to you if you’re interested is Key Person of Influence, written by an Australian author that talks about 24 assets, he writes about, um, the different assets in the business, everything from branding all the way through to the documentation, it would be something probably just to take a look at very aligned with taking that sort of more practical step from Tim in Dan Priestley’s, the author. He sort sorta takes that automation systems into what are the actual assets you’re building. And he comes up with 24 of them. The magic number is 24 and through different elements of the business, everything through marketing all the way through do standard operating procedures. So just something to check out there. Uh, question number three is what is the most influential tool in your business that you use on a daily basis? And when I say tool, it could be a physical tool like a notepad or a computer, or it could be a software that you, so what’s the number one tool?

Jacob Blackett (40:51):

You know, I, I can’t imagine running Holdfolio without the software. Uh, I, in it every day, it’s, it’s such a, such a foundation to that business model. Uh, so, that’s probably what I use the most and also without task management, I think that my head would literally explode. So, uh, so I use Google tasks. Uh, it’s integrated right with the inbox. How does the app on the phone, but it just lets you get the task off, clears your mind, uh, lets you schedule your days, pick the things that you’re going to get through. And uh, I just don’t see how I could, how I could push through, productively without, without that.

Reed Goossens (41:39):

Right. No, I think that’s, that’s incredible. And it’s such a being organized. It sounds like the big takeaway there, like making sure you having the right systems and tools in place to be organized. So you don’t, you get it out of your head and it’s on the paper it’s on, it’s on the software. So, um, and, and keeping organized each and every day is the key towards making sure you’re progressing towards your successful goals, uh, in the future. Awesome stuff. Uh, question number four in one sentence, what have been the biggest failure that you’ve learned in your career? Uh, and any again, what was the takeaway from that failure?

Jacob Blackett (42:12):

Success is a hundred percent a mindset and a hundred percent technical ability. So, uh, a great mindset and just ability to go take action and do things is required, but it’s not the only thing that’s required. You need to have some expertise from the technical knowledge, some savvy, uh, as well. And, and that really goes all the way to my first couple of deals. I was really hyped up, had a really good mentality mindset that I was just going and taking action and just being a doer. Um, but I didn’t know what I was doing. And so that got me into trouble on my first two flips that I did simultaneously. Um, and so that was, that was a good, uh, learning point and really, a good answer to that is just if you’re starting something new, you’ve never done it before the, of course you can learn how to do it by yourself. There’s so much knowledge and resources out there, but really the best thing is to put yourself on a team of someone who’s doing it successfully and use their experience as a springboard, and to learn and to be successful.

Reed Goossens (43:36):

Love it. Yeah. I think that’s super important. Um, making sure you having the education piece and surrounding yourself with people who can guide you along the way, but also having the get up and go type attitude. So I think combining those two is really, really important. And so I guess the takeaway from there is that you needed to be more self-aware that you didn’t know everything and you thought you did. Is that what it was?

Jacob Blackett (43:56):

Yeah, it was that, having self limiting beliefs and, uh, not having a growth mindset – that will hold you back. Uh, so you, 100% need to have that, go get her. I can do this mindset, but you also need to have the knowledge, the partner, the actual executional experience. So the takeaways you need both, it’s not mindset, it’s not the know-how, it’s both, you’ve got, you need them both.

Reed Goossens (44:27):

Maybe dangerous enough to know what you’re doing and not make those mistakes. Right. Yeah. My last question is where can people reach you to continue the conversation they want to be in your circle? They want to find out a little bit more about what you do, where do they go?

Jacob Blackett (44:40):

Well, two businesses – holdfolio.com and syndicationpro.com. Uh, my contact info is live on each of those sites, cell phone number and email. So, uh, so if you want to get in touch, check those out, get in touch with me. Uh, and if those of you out there who think that syndication pro might be a valuable tool for you, mention my name, get in touch with me. Uh, we’ll get as being a friend of, uh, read here with the 30 days free.

Reed Goossens (45:10):

Awesome. Awesome. Well, look, I want to thank you for jumping on today’s show. I think I just want to reflect some of the things that I took away from today’s show, which were really important and something that, you know, for you, you seem like you’ve figured out a systematic way to approach the business, and you’re not afraid to roll up the sleeves and take on control of property management or construction, or the big task of doing, developing an online software business in and around helping support the main business of buying real estate. And I talk a lot about on the show about the power of ecosystems and really ecosystems in business, create the long-term wealth. Yes, real estate in itself. If you just buy real estate, you will create long-term wealth, but you can 10x it and get there a lot quicker when you have all the other different pieces of the business, like the property management, construction management, the technology piece, um, you know, maybe sourcing product from China, you know what we do on our side, but that’s really important.

Reed Goossens (46:02):

I think you embody that Jacob in a huge way. Uh, and then you’re just not afraid to go out and learn about it, right. And you might not know exactly what to do with, you know, exactly example, you know, building the software, but you had the idea and then thus you approached the right people in order to partner with so they could build it for you. And then you could go off and have this tool that will only make you more successful in the future. So, from that point of view, well done. And secondly, did it leave anything out?

Jacob Blackett (46:31):

No, thanks. Thanks a lot Reed. Um, what you’ve brought here, I think, uh, I’m going to have to re-listen to it because, uh, you know, I’ve, I’ve enjoyed this conversation and you’ve brought a lot of great nuggets to the table along with kind of, my experience has been great.

Reed Goossens (46:47):

Awesome, man. Well look, thank you so much. Enjoy the rest of your week and we’ll catch up very, very soon. Well, there you have it another cracking episode jam packed with some incredible advice from Jacob. If you are interested in any of his websites, please remember to go over to syndicationpro.com or holdfolio.com and check him out. And he’s got some incredible software systems that can help scale your business. I want to thank you all again for taking some time out of your day to tune in, to continue to grow your financial IQ, because that’s where all about here on this show and easiest way to get back to this show. If you do like it is jump on iTunes and give it a five star review. It was all about there over there. Also. I want to let you know that right now you can get on. Amazon is my new book on the audible.com. It’s called investing in the U S the ultimate guide to you as real estate is now live on audible. So go over there and get your hands on a copy today. It’s all the best episodes from this show jam packed into a book which was launched two years ago. It’s an Amazon best seller, and now it’s on audible.com. Um, I want to thank you again, as I said, for taking some time out of your day, we’re going to it’s all again next week. So remember be bold.

 

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