I like to think that every property taken to the market for sale or lease is handled with a direct and deliberate strategy; that is my rule and process, and that is why I will not take on open listings. As busy as we can be in commercial real estate brokerage, the promotional strategies that we adopt are unique.
Every listing deserves the ‘deliberate’ approach to marketing and engagement with potential buyers or tenants. When you focus on the quality side of our business, you can achieve more results over time.
When you look at your average working week, where are the priorities? There should be only three or four things that you do every day, and those things should take precedence in your business activities. Sure, other things will have to be done, but the four main things will always take precedent.
Marketing Rules for Enquiry Attraction
So, the marketing process can be refined back to simple rules. Here are some of those rules that I like to work to:
Set a clear target market that applies to the listing. Where can you tap into that target market? How can you tune the marketing campaign to reach that group of targeted people? When you know those answers you can drill down on the campaign timing and media channels to be used. There are always different and better ways for us to do things. The clients that we serve like to hear fresh ideas and strategies; that is how you win more listings over time.
Use some different approaches to your promotional processes. The owner of the property can likely share some stories with you about the property and the location that would be valuable in your editorials and articles about the listings. A story makes a property more interesting. Historic properties are also valuable to helping you build a local profile that is different and perhaps specialized.
Build a matrix of marketing that can change and adjust every few weeks. It takes about three weeks for the first level of marketing to be assessed; from that assessment, you can modify adverts, media choices, and photography. Every website advert for each listing can be slightly different in layout or property facts. That then builds the attraction factor for better property inquiry.
Knowing the value of inbound inquiry, look at your listing groups so you can feed inquiry across the locations and the property types in positive ways. One inquiry can be directed to several properties and inspections. Do more with your inquiries. Track your inquiries so you know what is working for you with inbound property inquiry.
Take every property to the market with deliberate promotional strategies. Build some momentum with your listing activity and target marketing.
In commercial real estate brokerage, the best way to structure and implement a marketing program is to comprehensively cover a geographic location in many different ways. Don’t make the error of working with too many properties over a large location.
Drill down into smaller location with a greater level of coverage and connection. Get to know all of the property owners within a small location; the same principles apply when it comes to.
What Can You Do?
So there are two directions to consider when it comes to establishing a specific marketing program to help you win listings and client opportunities. You will always need to know plenty of clients and prospects as part of your database coverage. You also need to know the property owners by location, Street, and building type.
The research that you undertake will help you find the right people to make those very important connections. That research can take time given that some people are harder to locate and connect with.
Diligence and drive will get you through the research process. Remain on task and highly organized as you question the property ownership records and the businesses locally.
Here are some ideas to help you establish the system and find the opportunities:
Understand the property activities in your location. Some precincts will be more desirable than others for business occupancy and investment property. Determine where those locations are, and then drill down into the ownership and occupancy factors. The property precincts will also have trends that are essential to know when it comes to prices and rentals. Look at how the transaction results have been changing over time. Local market information and intelligence will always help you as part of your prospecting model.
Set specific criteria when it comes to targeted properties and targeted clients. Try to focus on the best clients and the best properties so that the level of quality that you create with your listings is always desirable to the market generally. When you have a good quality property to work with from sales or leasing perspective, take the property listing personally to the location and talk to plenty of property owners and local business owners. Every property listing can give you plenty of reasons to talk to people in the location.
Look at a map for your location and the positioning of roads and freeways. Understand how people move in and around the city when it comes to business activities. You can set a primary zone of prospecting where most of your business will be identified and created. Outside of that zone will be the secondary zone of prospecting where you may still be comfortable in taking listings, although you may not be highly active in prospecting through that region. When you compare the two zones, you will need about 2000 or 3000 properties in the primary zone to generate plenty of property churn and opportunity. That number can also be varied based on the number of businesses and also the property types that you focus on for the region. When you set the primary zone of prospecting activity, consider those specific elements.
Undertake an assessment of other listings and competitors in your primary zone of prospecting. When considering the competing brokers and agents, look at why they are currently active and what property types they specialize on. Are there segments of the market that you can service more successfully? Can you do things more comprehensively than your competitors locally?
When it comes to property marketing you really do need to stand out in a relevant and real way to the local business owners and the property investors. Your marketing has to be of the highest quality to be seen and to activate the levels of inquiry that you need. Every high-quality property should be the subject of a well-staged marketing campaign. Every exclusive listing should be taken through that process.
In commercial real estate brokerage today every exclusive listing should be part of a staged marketing campaign. In other words, the listing and the advertising should be shaped and released strategically.
In a staged marketing campaign, you can create significant market suspense and better inquiry. Avoid being ordinary when it comes to commercial real estate marketing and advertising. Stage every exclusive campaign so that you can pull in more inquiry over the duration of the promotion.
Strategy is Everything in Marketing
So there is a strategy here. Every advert builds towards the next promotional message; every advert leads to the next advert releasing more information and enticing the tenant or buyer to make an inquiry. Here are some ideas to help you do that with commercial real estate listings:
A typical marketing campaign for an exclusive listing will be structured over a period of two or three months. Over the nominated time the advert should feature alternative copy and a good selection of professional photographs. Every 30 days the advertising copy should change as would the digital images. In that way you are attracting different levels of inquiry, and hopefully better interest. You are making people think about the listing and the advantages of inspecting the property.
A timed campaign such as that for an auction or expressions of interest, will have a shorter campaign duration of around 4 to 6 weeks. The same strategic process applies in that the advert should be staged and shaped for different times within the campaign. You have a beginning, a main promotion, and then a summary reminder to the property listing or release. You see this process quite often with project sales and leasing. The same rules apply with investment property promotions or vacant properties for owner occupation.
You can consider the different target markets that apply to the particular property listing. When you have identified the different target markets, you can specifically design adverts for special release. Those efforts can be released into the media channels and newspapers serving the chosen target markets.
You can mix and match your advertising through different media outlets and types. Consider using preliminary adverts to be followed by the major adverts, and then to be followed up by smaller summary advertising at the end of the campaign.
The first two weeks of a property release are quite important to make sure that you have the promotional strategy correctly balance during that time. The first two weeks of every campaign are the real foundation and will be critical to the momentum of promotion from that point onward. The advertising should be carefully crafted to create maximum levels of interest and inbound telephone calls. Use facts and figures together with a good balance of written content and digital images to do just that.
Always track your advertising results through levels of inquiry, inbound calls, hits or clicks on the Internet, website referrals, website hits, and property inspections. In that way you can understand where the results are converting through the different elements of your marketing campaign. When you know what works, you can repeat the process.
You can create variations in the marketing campaign so that the inquiry rate can be optimized and shaped over time. Soon you will know how to best approach the promotion of a particular property type in your local area.
Here are some tips that I recorded in MP3 format for my commercial real estate friends. These ideas and comments relate to marketing and branding activities for top agents. You can get some ideas from how you can improve market share.
In commercial real estate advertising and marketing, you need to carefully consider the channels of media that you use for your agency and for your listings.
On that basis you should also be tracking the advertising responses that you achieve in all the different channels of media. Some will be more relevant than others for the listings that you take on and your region.
This then says that your promotional activity will have a specific focus of encouraging interaction with the buyers and the tenants that are in the market. You will also be encouraging interaction with the sellers and the landlords that are looking for property assistance. Tracking and measuring becomes a very specific process to help you see what is working from a promotional viewpoint. How and why are people contacting you? That is a really important question and key fact to monitor.
So your advertising and marketing efforts will encourage results and feedback from the right people looking for property assistance. They will come to you through various systems and processes that should and will all be tracked.
Here is a list of the things that should be utilized in most agencies and tracked for promotional feedback:
Out of every campaign for a quality property, you will get people looking for more information to be sent out. Each exclusive listing should be tracked for this. A follow-up telephone call should occur in each case after the information packet or email has been sent and received.
Understand the number of inspections that have occurred within property types and with particular listings. You will soon see the properties and the regions that are more popular than others.
Keep a tally of inbound telephone calls that apply to the agency and also to each listing. The same can be said for particular salespeople as some will be more successful than others when it comes to creating enquiry.
With some larger and more exclusive properties you will be sending out information memorandums to qualified prospects. These requests should be tracked and then followed through.
Each day you will receive requests via e-mail for property information. Keep a tally of email requests for all of your campaigns and exclusive listings.
Your newsletter should be sent on a regular basis to qualified prospects. Track the growth of your newsletter subscription list on a weekly and monthly basis. Keep in personal contact with the people on your list.
Put an offer on your website for a free report relating to the local property market. That free report will or should encourage subscribers to join your newsletter. Track the activity and the requests for this free report. Ensure that the report is of relevance and attraction to the local area and property market.
Track the number of website hits that you are getting each week. You will find that certain days of the week will be better for website marketing and property listing. Understand the differences between new visitors and repeat visitors to your website. Look at the bounce rate that applies to people coming in and moving around the pages of the site.
Track the numbers of people involved in your social media activity. You should have a social media platform for the agency and also for the individual salespeople in your team. It is questionable whether you will actually make a sale or lease as a direct result of social media usage. Social media is more effective as a community involvement tool. It helps people remember you for the future when they are ready to lease, buy or sell commercial and retail property.
You may add to this list based on your property type and your location. You can however see the importance of tracking numbers so that you can see and determine the things that are working for you. When something works well as promotional tool, it should be repeated or utilized on a regular basis.