on the Markets Shopping List
the extremely competitive real estate market the key is
to be the consultant on top of the prospective vendors shopping
list or better still the only person on their shopping
Without a dominate position in the mind of the prospective
vendor you run the risk of your appraisal and presentation
being one where you compete for the listing on the vendors
Yes without a unique relationship or proposition you will
be ranked against the competition on the following basis:
What price are you promising me?
What fees will you charge me?
What marketing am I getting and who is paying for
If the above three factors are the keys to your presentation
then you naturally run the risk of being eliminated because
someone else is liked better than you, or they out-bid you
on price or discounted their fee or marketing.
So why not set about creating a presence in the market place
based on strong relationships and an ever-increasing network,
where you are seen as the competent and professional realtor?
So rather than trying to build your business based on the
people you find, why not turn this around and grow your
business with people who find you.
It is, but consider the difference between a referral
and a preferral.
The preferral is a referral where you are already the preferred
consultant because of the quality of the referral and you
are the only one invited in to make a proposal. This type
of business is taken under your terms and rarely will they
ask for a discount. So if your sales business is based on
competing for new clients take a look at the following pointers
and see if there are some new tactics you could introduce
to create a flow of preferrals for you.
Initially you would have set up a contacts database of all
the people who know you. On a regular basis you are reminding
them that you are still in real estate and how well you
are doing. Do this at least monthly! This is a simple marketing
strategy followed up by at least 10 phone calls a day to
that database to ask for any referral business.
But lets now take a client view and see if there is
another approach that might work even better where you are
the only consultant called in to handle the business:
So how might people choose consultants?
1. The most comfortable way to locate a new consultant for
a lot of people is by Word of mouth. If a colleague
or friend can endorse someone for them they can be encouraged
to select because it saves time and reduces any risk.
Yes a recommendation from one buyer to another is the number
one referral strategy you need to try and create.
Apart from simply doing a great job, following up later,
handing them spare business cards etc, the number one strategy
here is to simply ask for leads from everyone you do business
What other people do you know that might need some
real estate help? Do you mind if I use you name as a reference
when I call them?
2. A great reputation is the next strategy.
Different from 1 above as the person selecting you may not
have got your name from a past client of yours. The strategy
here is to be famous or dominant in the market with all
the marketing tools at your disposal. This means you have
to regularly publish Newsletters and pass on information
of value related to real estate. This strategy is not as
powerful as 1 above as it may only serve to get you in the
door. You will still have to perform.
3 Load their files with bits about you.
Dont hold back from continually sending out material
about you and what you do. Not just the newsletters above,
but continually send out letters, property catalogues, postcards,
calendars, etc and look to add more and more useful information
about the market , property values and trends and produce
these with such quality and credibility that they
are kept. When they need a consultant they can simply pull
you out of their filing cabinet. So repetitive mailings
that continually update people, on you and the market will
get you on the shopping list first.
Be part of your local professional network.
From the outside looking in, the people you are seen to
associate with may tell me a little about you and your abilities.
Coupled with that, the other members of the network can
also be clients in the first sense or referring contacts
in the second sense. So take steps to be part of both the
local real estate institute and then part of a professional
association in your community. Look at your local Chamber
of Commerce, Rotary, BNI, Business Assoc., Retailers Assoc.,
Property Investors Assoc., etc
5 Only promote property with large advertisements.
Its pretty clear from client surveys that the consultants
promoting property with larger advertisements are more competent
and better at finding buyers.
Consultants who attempt to build their profile, reputation
and referral business with small adverts are simply making
it harder for themselves to grow their listing base as other
agents present a perception of greater skill and panache,
and therefore more buyers. If you were selling your house
which one would you choose?
There are a lot more prospecting methods than these listed
here, but all too often we get caught up in the detail of
a specific prospecting task and run the risk of looking
at the big picture. It may be that you are focusing on a
specific suburb or group of people, or databasing intensely
to your own personal network, and it is paying you dividends.
Now add the above 4 strategies to the mix and watch your
business fly. By relying on the geographic and database
strategies you may well be earning opportunities to make
a submission, but the more you do of the 4 above the more
you will get to make a submission without competition.