In commercial real estate brokerage most of the new business that you create will be through ongoing prospecting and appointment creation. If you are finding that the property market is a bit tough or slow, then take a serious look at your prospecting model and activities on a daily basis.
Can your processes be improved?
Can you spend more time on connecting with the right people in the right way?
How will you show them your relevance as an agent for the location and the property type?
They are interesting questions that all require specific answers.
The ideas will help you get back in to the key issues of the market and property opportunity existing. There will always be people looking for solutions and strategies surrounding office, industrial, and retail property. They need experts to help them move through the challenges and the stages of investment property improvement or occupation.
Why are you special?
The clients and the property prospects in the market today need to know who you are, why you are so special, and how you can help them specifically with property market trends and opportunities. The personal marketing process and requirement in today’s commercial real estate brokerage is very high and specific.
The skills required in selling, leasing, or property management activity today are quite specific and direct. Gone are the days of generic Property Marketing and openly listing properties. Exclusivity is the only way to dominate market share over time. Actively pursue the Appointments are Everything in Commercial Real Estate as part of your property presentation pitch and presentation.
In this tougher commercial property market there are all sorts of pressures and hurdles to handle in agency on a daily basis as you look for the right prospects and deals. Importantly each and every day your system should take you forward a bit further towards the targets that you are chasing.
In saying that there are some really important observations that will help you understand the bigger issues and then help you get somewhere.
Many agents and salespeople have very little system. They do not do the right things every day and on that basis they struggle. They take each day as it comes. Very few salespeople have a personal business plan that they stick to and modify as they go through the year. That is a massive opportunity. You can quickly get past the competitors that have no base plan or focus.
Most towns and cities have elements of activity to tap into. You just need to know what to look for. If you can move from sales to leasing, you will always find property listings and business to tap into. On that basis become very versatile with the property services that you offer.
These two simple facts will set the scene for new business. Stop working for others and start working for yourself; when you really accept and understand that the process of new business comes from you personally, the doors to new listings and deals open very quickly. Property business is always out there; it is just a matter of what you can do about it. Stay away from any negative and poor performing salespeople in your team; you do not need to travel their road to destruction.
Self-belief is a wonderful thing; self-action is even more powerful. You need both to get somewhere in commercial real estate.
If you have not got a base plan for your working day, here is a simple one that works for some agents that I know. One of those agents earns 7 times more than anyone else in that office. Here is their plan:
Start the day on the telephone doing some prospecting. That means a time frame of about 2 hours that can take you through to 10:30 am in the morning.
Move all your meetings beyond 11:00 am every day.
Leave your paperwork to the time beyond 5:00 pm every day.
Get your of the office when and only when you have finished your prospecting.
Visit your territory and sales patch every day to meet new people and to door knock new businesses that you have not called on before.
These 5 simple things are not done by most salespeople every day. That shows just how easy it is to be better than the others that you compete against.
When you work as a salesperson or agent in commercial real estate, the prospecting process can be very frustrating. That is because it is not easy and it does require practice and real focus. Some people find those two things really hard to achieve on a regular basis. Here are some tips from our regular bulletin for Commercial Real Estate Agents.
The good agents prospect every day for about 2 or 3 hours. When this becomes a habit in your business processes and diary, the market opportunities start to evolve. Given that your salary usually revolves around commissions, this is a good thing.
Having seen many salespeople struggle with the issue and most not handling it well, I have developed a set of rules to help the process for those that want to get ahead.
When you follow the rules, things start to happen. I want to share those with you now:
Prospecting and cold calling is the single most important thing that you should do every day. There are no short cuts; just research and do the work. That being said, it is best to get your ordinary business day very organised so that the same time frame is set aside for you to prospect and cold call. Research does not fit into that time frame; researching the people to call takes time and should occur in the evening the night before you make your calls. The internet and the business telephone book will be good sources of opportunity if you use them methodically.
There are only a few simple things that will make a lot of difference to your career in the industry. Prospecting is always number 1 on the list. Presentation and negotiation skills fall at numbers 2 and 3. As you can see, the industry is quite simple if you break it down to the main categories. So what should you do with items 1, 2, and 3? You should practice them on a regular basis. The process of practice will fast track the results that you get.
The process of prospecting involves contacting lots of people on a regular basis. Some of those people will have no interest or need for your services and on that basis should be dropped from ongoing contact. Others will have a need one day, and on that basis you will need to talk to them at least every 90 days until you can get a meeting and put a ‘name to a
face’. This industry is all about relationships, and meetings are really important to start that.
As you prospect with new people, expect that most people will not want to talk or meet with you. That is quite OK given that you do not want to waste your time (or theirs). Look at ‘rejection’ as a simple process of advantage that allows you to talk to other people and find the right opportunities.
If you prospect well, you will build a good market share faster than those that struggle to organise themselves. Are you up to the challenge? I hope so.
Need some more tips to handle prospecting in commercial real estate sales or leasing? Get our bulletin here.
There are lots of commercial real estate salespeople and agents around the local property market. Some of them are less professional than others, and the best top agents will be few and far between. When it comes to a sales pitch for listing presentation, you have to connect with the client and convey your credibility and experience in an effective way. You will be up against some top agents.
The good thing is that most agents take a generic approach to the sales pitch process. That means your presentation can be more successful if you choose to make specific steps in building your credibility and showing it in your sales pitch or presentation.
What Does the Client Want?
When it comes to selling and leasing commercial or retail property, the one thing that really matters to the client will center on the success of the process. They need to see that you have the experience, tools, and strategy to make the sale or leasing process as fast and as painless as possible. They want the right agent with the dominance in the market and the credibility to make the process work.
Ultimately they want the best price or rental, but they also need a reasonably short time on market. They understand that the longer the property remains on the market, the more difficult it will be in attracting new and fresh inquiry.
To lift your credibility as a specialist commercial agent in your sales pitches the following factors will be of great assistance.
Show the client similar properties that you have successfully transacted in recent time. Give them details of the time on market, the starting price or rental, and the end result. Emphasize the strategies necessary to complete the transaction quickly and effectively.
Show the client some comparable properties in the local area that are just not selling or leasing. These properties will be with the other agents in the local area and on that basis should be suitably explained. Tell the client why you believe these listings are not moving and how those other agents have got the wrong processes underway.
Explain to the client the recent levels of enquiry that you have had from buyers and tenants for similar properties. You should be able to provide specific case studies of the requirements of some of these parties. Show them the size of your database.
Pricing and rentals should be broken down to a unit level; in this way you can compare properties of different sizes in the same general location. That analysis will be per square foot or per square metre as the case may be. You can then also relate to the cost of replacement of the improvements on various properties; split the properties into levels of relevance.
Take digital photographs around the client’s property and then compile a slide show of photographs that can run on your laptop whilst you are making your presentation. Make sure that the slides running automatically are only photographs. Do not attempt to put any words into the slides process; just use the photographs as trigger points for discussion and let them roll through continually during your presentation. For a typical commercial property, a selection of 30 or 40 photographs will be adequate.
Show the client how you will be inspecting the property with potential tenants or buyers as the case may be. Give details of the features of the property that will be emphasized in your inspections and in the marketing process.
Give samples of relevant advertising that can apply to the client’s property when you take it to market. Itemize the trigger points and focus points that should be featured in the advertising.
Provide a timeline to show the client exactly how you will be preparing the property for marketing and how you will then be taking it to the market as part of a dedicated and specially designed campaign.
All of these things help you build credibility as a specialist commercial agent. Show that you are fully prepared to take on the subject property with all its challenges and attributes. Confidence and strategy will underpin your market knowledge and allow the client to see that you are really the agent of choice when it comes to the property solution that they require.
In commercial real estate today, we see far too many agents offer discounts and marketing cost benefits as part of the sales presentation or pitch. If the client is looking for a discount before they will make a decision on the listing, then they are not the client that you need. It is better to walk away from these clients. If they are basing their listing decision on ‘cheap’ and ‘shortcuts’ they are likely to be difficult clients when it comes to negotiations with serious and reasonable prospects. Here is a tip from our Newsletter.
In this market buyers or tenants are very aware of market conditions, and they will not offer above market prices or rents, or enter into unrealistic negotiations with unmotivated vendors or landlords. There are lots of other properties to choose from today.
The reality of commercial real estate market today is that sales and leasing transactions are slow and difficult to put together. The average transaction does not occur quickly or easily. Real focus and effort is required on the part of the salesperson or agency to resolve the property pain for the client, and that takes time and a strategy. The word ‘discount’ doesn’t feature as a requirement or have any relevance.
Discounted commission or discounted fees in the sale or lease process create the following issues:
The agent will be more inclined to work on properties where the fee is more realistic and appropriate for the volume of work concerned.
The agent knows that the client is not totally committed to the sale or lease process and on that basis it is more likely to be an adversary in the marketing and negotiation activity.
Sometimes a client will look to the agent to cover the marketing costs as part of the promotional campaign. Most agents in that case will selectively and restrictively market the property within a small budget.
The reality of property sales and leasing today says that we have fewer buyers and tenants to work with for the average property listing. Levels of enquiry are slower and negotiations are longer. Getting the message out to the marketplace is more important than ever before.
So the best agents today in their sales or listing presentation will firmly commit to the following process in front of the client.
They will define the best strategy and timing to take the property to the market. This will include due consideration for market conditions, competitive properties, methods of promotion, levels of enquiry, and pricing or rental strategy.
They will comprehensively determine the target market that best suits the property to be promoted. When the target market has been defined, it is much easier to create a specific marketing campaign and seeking vendor paid marketing funds.
They will recommend the marketing campaign across a number of initiatives relevant to the target market. Most marketing campaigns run for a period of six or eight weeks and then slow right down. A full 60% to 70% of the marketing funds should be spent and committed to the first half of the campaign. This is how you build momentum and enquiry. It should also be said that the every aspect of the marketing campaign should be tracked for results; if something is not working, you change it.
Good agents will personally commit to direct marketing including canvassing the streets and businesses, cold calling, and database contact and review.
There are many more reasons to appoint an agent on a full commission than to provide discounts. Clients should be given the specific reasons why discounts and shortcuts do not work in this market.
When it comes to your career in Commercial Real Estate Agency, you really do need to know how to motivate yourself each day and stick to a system. Here are some tips for building the right attitude in commercial property sales and leasing. When you achieve the right momentum here you can build a better business for yourself and increase your commssions and listings. You can join our Commercial Property Agents Newsletter here.