At different times of the calendar year there will be good opportunities to run a sales listing drive. As part of that you will be choosing the best methods of marketing and sale. Business and investor sentiment will also have something to do with the choices made here.
So you have some sales listings? Maybe you want more of that? Either way, here are the main factors of opportunity to tap into as you drive the sales momentum forward locally:
Timing for season and location – look at the property activity for the year, and reflect on the history for the area. Most sales calendars are best commenced just after the Christmas break and also just after the change in the financial year. In each case you have a few months to build momentum on listed properties, and the people looking to buy are not generally distracted in local business issues or holidays.
Best methods of sale for the time of year – you have a few methods of sale at your disposal. Choose the right ones that match the property and the client’s needs. At the basic end of the equation you will have auctions, tender, expressions of interest, and sale at a price. One or more of those methods will be the right choice for your listing. Talk to the client and get their commitment to your recommendations; explain the issue to them, and convert them. Match some vendor paid marketing into the right method of sale, and the exclusive listing process.
Talk to the right investors and property owners – every listing will be more or less attractive to certain segments of the local property market. Find those people by directly target marketing at an individual level. Get involved separately in doing that. Make sure that you meet with the right people in the right places. You want them to know you and remember you as the industry professional that they require.
Repeat contact 300/90 – in our industry, regular contact will always help listing momentum and conversion. All of the people in your database should be spoken to regularly. The 90-day cycle works well. The way to achieve that level of contact will be through deliberate calls, letters, and meetings. The database that you use should be adjusted to bring up that 90-day process of contact automatically.
Track your streets and location progress – when you have anything to sell or market, review the streets and the competing listings. Get very involved in local area marketing. Know what is happening in the streets and do something with that knowledge.
These simple strategies are all relevant and special in the sales drive that you may create in your commercial real estate business. Optimize the process of promotion and property momentum. The first few weeks of any sales campaign are the most important. Get involved and get active.
A sales team in commercial real estate brokerage is typically (or should be) a group of like minded sales professionals in control of their market, their clients, the territory and their special property types. When you look into the team there are special indicators to watch and track as the team gets results in listings, clients, commissions, and referrals.
Commercial property today is as competitive as ever; top sales teams should be working to a plan and strategy for their location. The real estate ‘year’ is most commonly between February and November each year. Most of the sales and leasing transactions will be done in just those 10 months.
In this audio program, John Highman talks about the importance of tracking and monitoring the performance of the sales team.
In commercial real estate from time to time, you will get a slump in sales. That will come from a variety of challenges and market changes. When that occurs, it is important that you adjust your prospecting processes and market focus.
A slump in sales is a reason to shift your personal business practices and market segments. If the sales activity is genuinely slower for a long time, then you should start to look at the alternatives of helping landlords with leasing activity in the local area. Invariably you will find that a new commission opportunity still exists, albeit in a different way.
Here are some rules that should apply to the changing market conditions and a personal slump in sales:
A slump will only continue if you fail to adjust your prospecting and business efforts. In many respects, the downturn may have been created through a lack of personal prospecting and client connection. It is easy to stop prospecting when you have plenty of business on the go. That is the most common problem we see when it comes to this type of industry downturn.
Review your activities when it comes to new business generation. Take a serious look at your database to ascertain that it is up to date and accurate in every respect. If your database is lacking in any way, it will require immediate attention and that will involve plenty of phone calls talking to those people that you have overlooked or not connected with recently.
Talk to all of the clients that you have serviced over the last five years. It is a known fact that property owners and investors work to a cycle of ownership and disposal. Many property owners will act on a property decision or transaction once every 5 to 7 years. That is why the cycle of contact is so important to the business that we generate.
Ask for referrals from the clients and the prospects that you know. This is the easiest relationship building process available to us.
Get back into your sales territory and the streets that contain the quality properties. Door-knock the local businesses to introduce yourself and question them about their current property needs and activities. Most business owners and proprietors will know a lot more about their immediate local property market than you do. They are likely to share some of that information that can lead to some good leads and other connections.
Look for any new property developments and any rezoning applications. You can get this information from the local planning office. Whilst some of these transactions take months if not years to come to fruition, you can position yourself to help those property owners impacted by the changes.
Lift your presence on the Internet through social media activity and also specific property blogging activity. Show the online world that you are a real expert when it comes to the property type and the location.
To get over a slump in sales activity, it is simply a matter of changing your focus and your business habits. Put yourself back into a prospecting mindset and reconnect with the market in every way possible.
In a commercial real estate agency you have to be really careful how you integrate the sales and agency team with the administrative team. The job roles and specifications must be carefully set so that both arms of the business work to the common goals of market share and commission.
The administrative people in your agency are the ‘processors’ of the business whilst the agents and salespeople are there to bring in the new business. I know that statement may upset some very hardworking administration people; the fact of the matter is that they would not have a job without some successful salespeople bringing in the listings and the leads.
There are a couple of problems in the commercial real estate industry that need to be made clear:
Top agents need support. If this is not done they will either lose focus on the paperwork that has to be done, or they will spend too much time on the paperwork and the commissions will fall away.
Many top agents are not good at the paperwork side of the business. Whilst there is no excuse for this, it is a common problem in the industry and team leaders should deal with the problem. Everyone in the team has to work together in harmony.
The administrative staff should be chosen for their ability to support the sales team. On that basis they should be checked out as to a character of ‘cooperation’ and their administrative skills. Uncooperative administrative staff can destabilise the business and the output of the sales team.
The members of the sales and agency team should respect the value and services of the administrative staff. In this way more work and better results will occur.
The salespeople that you employ in your real estate business are there for one thing and that is to generate business. Every day they have to prospect, cold call, market properties, meet clients, take inspections, and process listings. In all of those things there is a lot of paperwork.
You cannot have the sales team ‘bogged down’ with paperwork. Yes, they do have some paperwork to do and it must be accurate. The burden of mundane and ordinary paperwork can be lifted from the team with a good administrative support team.
How many salespeople should you have for one administrative person? With ordinary salespeople that are not yet at the top of their game, the ratio is about 3 salespeople to one support person. With more sales and listing success that ratio will change. Top Agents will usually have one totally dedicated support person working for them.