In your role as a broker or agent, your client contact model will be indispensable to your business growth plans. Client and prospect contact is necessary and crucial to your attraction of listings and eventually the commissions that you require.
The primary focus of your business day should be to talk to the people that you know now, and those that could be clients over time. There are no shortcuts to that requirement. Conversations create leads and the interest of other people in your real estate services.
Smart Contact and List Building Ideas
So, I call these the ‘smart contact ideas’ for brokers and agents. These are ways of connecting with people regularly and not being ‘excessive’ and overdone in your commercial real estate prospecting or client communication.
Help people to understand the property market; that is a good way of approaching contact and prospecting activity. These are the ‘smart contact ideas’ that you could merge into your business model:
Examples and Case Studies from property activity in the local area – a successful transaction is a good story to share. Providing you are not breaching any client confidentiality, a sale or lease transaction is worth talking about and communicating to other interested local people. You can also do an article or press release and publish it on your blog, website, and or in the local newspapers. You can add to those alternatives, your social media channels. Spread the word about property activity; show the people in the property market that you have plenty of coverage and activity now with good quality listings.
Listings in the zone or precinct – break your local area and your listings down into groupings so you can look at the momentum with inspections, enquiries, and marketing choices. Local listings will be attractive and interesting to investors or other business leaders. Share the information about the properties on the market now.
Review of supply and demand for buildings and land – as the local economy changes, there will be requirements for land and developments. What is happening with land supply that could impact future construction and the availability of quality buildings? Look for the land and consider the zoning issues that will strengthen or weaken property construction and supply. Talk about the supply trends of local property.
Changes to cap rates and yields – some towns or cities are ‘better performers’ when it comes the cap rates and yields on a commercial and or retail property. There will be ‘averages’ to look for when it comes to the sale and leasing of investment properties. Most properties will have factors of attraction and some weaknesses when it comes to investment. What are the indicators that apply now to purchase and ownership of local investment property? What could a property owner expect from the purchase of a property and its retention for several years?
So, these are valuable things to talk to your clients and prospects about as you connect in regular ongoing ways. Provide locally based sales and leasing information comprehensively; that is the foundation of client contact and professional services as a broker or agent.
In the commercial real estate industry, you will get plenty of pressure from your clients and prospects to reduce your commission or service fee. If you truly believe that your services are superior in your location and with your property types, then fee reduction is not an option.
Ask for the appropriate fee for services to be rendered. Talk about the value that you provide to the client and their property challenge, and then wait for an answer. Be prepared to walk away from a fee reduction request if it is unfair or too onerous.
Desperation is not a good look in commercial real estate nor should it be the basis of your commission or listing agreements. If you truly believe that you are offering a top-quality service, then ask for the fair fee, and stick to your request.
One thing should be remembered here when thinking about listing fees and commissions. The client needs your services to resolve their property challenge to get the best outcome achievable and to do so in a timely way. If you sell your services through those two points of focus, the conversion of the listing at a fair commission is quite achievable.
Who Do You Work For?
You do not want to work for clients that are unrealistic, or not aligned to the property market situation today. Local area investigations will show you and the client what the chances may be of getting property enquiry and inspections underway.
So, a focused listing approach and presentation process will help you achieve better outcomes with your clients and with your service commissions. Try these ideas for starters:
Show that you understand the facts. That then is those facts relating to the client and their property and its position in the location. Inspect the property with the client to discuss presentational issues, strategies, improvements, and tactics.
Define a clear target market. Every property will be suited to certain target markets. The more direct that you are in defining that fact will then help with client engagement and decision making.
Tell a few stories. Property stories always help with a client conversation and decisions required. Choose the stories that are best suited to the property type and the challenges faced by the client in today’s terms. Show that client that you understand the solutions required. Talk about how you will direct your efforts towards solutions.
Choose the best method of sale (or lease). There are different ways to approach the marketing of any property. Make your choices for the client and give them some alternatives to work with. It is then easier for the client to decide what they are doing and why they should act in a way as part of moving on your recommendations.
Give real strategy to your professional approach. Don’t be generic in your business approach to listing or selling a commercial property. The ‘common’ approach to marketing and negotiation should only apply to ‘open listings’.
Give timelines to the campaign and marketing process. There are many things to do in marketing a commercial, industrial, or retail property. Show the clients the stages of your approach and how they are so relevant to moving things forward. Put yourself in the equation of property marketing and negotiating.
Seek exclusivity for work to be undertaken, as that is the only way you can devote the required time to the client and their property. Show the client why your exclusive listing processes are superior in resolving their challenge today.
If you follow these rules, it helps you convert listings and achieve better commissions. Always document the sale or lease agreement comprehensively and legally, so you do not have to revisit the commission discussion again. Simply put, get into the marketing of the property and resolving the client’s property targets and obstacles in a timely way.
In commercial real estate today, your contact system is critical to the results that you seek with listings, clients, and commissions. The property market will change throughout the year and your database list is the one consistent process that can take you across and into all types of properties and opportunities. NB – you can get plenty of client contact ideas here in Snapshot – its free)
There are plenty of ways to establish and run a contact management system in commercial real estate brokerage. Similarly, there are plenty of software programs to support the client list process. Whilst you can always choose a good and well proven CRM package to support your contact processes, everything still comes down to personal momentum and commitment as part of a prospecting model.
Growing your business?
If you are looking to build your real estate business, seriously consider your database activities and your prospecting model. Establish a system that works for you comprehensively and consistently across the location and your targeted groups of clients or prospects.
Understand who your clients are by type and by location. Understand the targeted properties that you should be working on overtime. Define your territory and your priority buildings. From that point on, your prospecting model can take shape and the database can grow effectively and directly.
In this audio, I share my thoughts about contact management and list creation. Grow your list of clients and prospects and put more ‘logic’ into the process.
You can talk about recent levels of enquiry, trends in prices or rentals, the best methods of marketing, and feedback from recent inspections. You can display your information graphically, as statistics in the form of the chart, and also pictorially. Recognise the different ways to engage your client in the listing presentation with valuable local property market information.
In this audio by John Highman, you can learn some of the very specific ways to improve your sales pitch and presentation with a new client when it comes to listing their property in today’s market. You can listen to the audio below, where you can download it as required.
There are things to practice and things to learn. Don’t put off the process of cold calling for too long, develop the practice that you require to generate conversations with new people in your territory or client list.
Factors to Learn
In this audio program, John Highman talks about the factors of cold calling that are important to converting listing opportunity today. It doesn’t matter with you work in sales, leasing, or property management. Calls need to be made to new people on a regular daily basis. In fact, cold calling should feature in your diary as part of your brokerage activities. It should be a priority process each and every working day.
Learn the strategies behind cold calling and prospecting as a broker or an agent. Develop the skills required to connect with new people each and every working day. It doesn’t take too long to find the opportunities that you are looking for with listings and clients.
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