Venus Williams said, “You win or lose the match before you even go out there”. It’s the same in real estate – a presentation to potential clients via Zoom or in-person is actually only part of the process, what you do before that meeting is usually what wins you the business.
You should never just go in there and ‘wing it’, relying on your charm to win them over. To use an old saying, “forewarned is forearmed”, which basically means some advanced knowledge gives you a tactical advantage.
- When someone calls in to make an inquiry or appointment, use a call-in questionnaire to ask the right questions so that you go in armed and ready for every situation – this may highlight that they’re divorcing, under mortgage, stress, having a third child and looking to upgrade, downsizing to be near the grandkids etc. In most of these cases, you can relate to or at least sympathize with their situation, and this can be a great opportunity to build rapport. Some agents use gifts. I’m a big advocate of that to invoke the law of reciprocity, providing it’s tasteful. You can also do an email pre-presentation, sending an email linked to your website and other sales that you have made. Or do both.
- Once you have the appointment, it becomes all about building rapport. People come before business, so take the time to get to know your potential clients, focus on their interests and make sure you are being genuine. An easy way to do this is using the techniques in Dale Carnegie’s book How to win friends and influence people. To help, I’ve broken it down into ten very simple steps.
- Create a detailed agenda for the meeting. Make it their agenda, make it about them. Ask them what they want to cover, which is obviously how much is my property worth, how long it’s going to take to sell and how much is this going to cost. But there are a few other things you should include, such as the strategies you want to walk them through. This could be the method of sale – such as some sort of five-stage selling strategy, or a strategy that offers deadlines, whether it be set date sale, auction/online auction, or something to that effect. These sales strategies fast track the result and give the seller dates they can work on, where decisions need to be made, good, bad or ugly. You also need a strategy to open up the conversation about fees and commission where you invite objections and talk openly and proudly about your fees. That way you can find the gap where you can close and win the business. Use the agenda to tick the boxes as you go so there doesn’t end up being a hard obnoxious close at the end. It’s just simply ticking boxes and then when you get to the end it’s about moving forward based on what makes them comfortable.
- Be prepared to wait. You may be happy to meet people and show them homes and have home opens now, but your sellers may not be ready for that, even in a month or two months’ time. They might want to take it slow – this happens under normal conditions, but now you may be dealing with people who are elderly or know elderly or medically compromised people and have concerns about having strangers coming through their home. Hopefully, your pre-presenting questionnaire highlighted this and you can address some of their concerns, but at this stage, it comes down to what they want and what’s important to them. You may need to wait for them to be ready. You also need to nurture them during that period – don’t forget about them and let some other agent swoop in.
- Follow up. We’ve all been there, we’ve gone through everything, things look good, but the client just doesn’t want to sign as they have an appointment with another agent. Don’t be pushy and try to insist they go with you, but make sure you find out when that appointment is and then follow the client up. Find out how they felt about the other agent, what the agent said – you may be able to counter it. If they didn’t sign up with them you’re still in with a chance. They may not sign for many other reasons too and you should also follow up with these people and keep in touch. Here are a few post-appraisal tips from a previous blog.
Use these steps to set yourself up to win now and in the future. But if you want more detailed information or help, we have pre-listing, pre-presentation and post-appraisal systems ready to go at Real Estate Brilliance. You can find out more by attending my upcoming FREE 2-hour webinar.