Finding Qualified Prospects to Cold Call and Network in Commercial Real Estate

Business Woman Reading
Preparation and research are the keys to Prospecting and Cold Calling in Commercial Real Estate.

Some commercial real estate salespeople struggle with the issue of finding people to call as part of a call contact and prospecting process.  They see that finding the name and address of just one property owner is such a task that all subsequent prospecting is put off.  They do not want to spend time in research to get the numbers and make the calls.  Here are some tips from our newsletter.

Prospecting is not hard, you just need to find out what works and start doing it.  Creativity and consistency are all part of the process.  Here are a few facts about the call contact and prospecting process:

  1. Research required to make the calls always takes time, but that is only with property owner contact details.  There are many other things you can do that take less time.
  2. Local businesses are either tenants or they own the property in which they are located.  On that basis they should be contacted because you can find out so much about their needs with property.  With the right questions they will give you a lot of information.  Use the business telephone book to contact business owners and tenants.
  3. Get out into your sales territory to do some ‘drop in’ contact.  This also helps with local market intelligence.  Business owners know far more about their street and location than you do.  Ask the questions and all will be revealed.
  4. You must make the call contact time a central part of you diary day and time commitment.  In that way you will build a habit that can grow your market share.
  5. The most successful salespeople in the industry have a great database that they keep up to date.  It takes hard work but it is worth the effort.
  6. Practice in the call process will build your confidence and momentum.  You simply have to challenge yourself to improve.
  7. It takes about 3 weeks of real effort to build call momentum.  That process is up to you in all respects.  With a little creativity you can find 30 people to call on a daily basis.  Soon you will find new property opportunity.

So just who do you call?  Try this list for starters:

  • Business owners
  • Tenants
  • Landlords
  • Property owners
  • Solicitors
  • Accountants
  • Developers

All of these groups need help and assistance with property from different angles and at different times.  Some of these sources of business are easier to locate and some are harder, but wouldn’t you expect that?  When you put in the effort you get results out the other end.

Yes the process takes effort, but for those that break through the barrier of contact and prospecting on a daily basis, the property market is your oyster.  I like salespeople to give me solutions and not obstacles.  Prospecting is an obstacle for some, so find your solution that really works.

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Commercial Property Agents – Sales Team Management

Salesperson Meeting
Manage your commercial property sales team in segments. It makes life a lot easier.

It is really hard to monitor and then enforce the performance of a large commercial real estate sales team.  A large team will have diverse sales people each requiring special attention or guidance given their stages of market share and industry knowledge.   There are also the characters of the team to take into account when addressing progress and activity.  All these variables need to be taken into account so you can achieve momentum from each person.  Here is an extract from our Newsletter.

The secret to the process is to split up the team into 3 categories of sales performers.  When you do that you can drive the team in its separate groups.  Each of the 3 groups will take your training and guidance differently.

Keep your high performers away from the newer team members.  Invariably we find that the top performers are not good role models to explain their activities and encourage new recruits.  Top performers are too busy getting on with their own business and normally they do not want to be tied down with average people to train or coach.  Do not frustrate the higher performers in the group as it will impact your commissions.

So you can split up the larger sales team or group into 3 segments such as:

  1. New Starters – these are usually members of your team that are still learning the ropes and have not yet established reasonable levels of personal market share or market knowledge.  I would expect that members of the team would stay in this group for around 12 months.
  2. Improvers – these are people that have graduated from the ‘New Starters’ group after they have proven themselves with new business, listings, client contact, and commissions.  You can also put people into this group if they have just joined your business from another agency.  This then gives you time to assess how they do business and relate to clients.  It would be normal for members of this team to stay in the group for 12 to 18 months.  Beyond that time they should have graduated to the top level or high performer’s team.  Some people will never graduate out of the ‘Improvers’ team, and if that is the case then they soon become people that have limitations and need special attention.  You can then choose to train them and or help their self-confidence and market knowledge.  If they still fail to improve then they become an economic decision at the next staff review.
  3. High performers – these are the members of your team that have really made it to the top of the team in commissions and listings.  As to what levels of performance sets these people apart from the rest is up to you as the team leader, but the benchmark should be realistically high in the current local property market given your office activities and market share.

As to what criteria you set to split up the groups is really up to you but in most cases it should be based on results in listings and commissions.  These 2 facts go hand in hand.  Clearly a person that only has listing results and low commissions also has a problem to address.

So the message here is for the office principal or sales manager is to split up a large commercial real estate sales team to the smaller groups.  Each group can be coached and helped into the requirements of the local property market.

When you take this approach with the team, sales and leasing results become easier and simpler to enforce.  You can soon see people that are just not reaching the benchmarks you have set and deal with it appropriately.

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