In commercial real estate brokerage the customer inquiry system for the office should be automated for the direct handling of inquiries and inspections.  The process should be quite specific given the property types and the listings handled in the brokerage, so the inquiries coming from the active and most recent marketing activity can be understood, optimized and inspections controlled.

Plenty of Listings Brings Plenty of Database Challenges

When you have a lot of listings and property promotions running at the same time, the process of taking and processing inquiries can be quite complex without a dedicated customer inquiry system in the brokerage.  Every property inquiry should be fully qualified before any inspection is arranged.

To a degree and within reason, any information about the property listing should be withheld until the inquiring party has been fully qualified and questioned.  You never really know when you are talking to another agent across telephone, or perhaps an adjoining property owner seeking more information for their own private and specific reasons.

Protect your property listings so that you are not sharing listing information without being fully aware about the circumstances, requirements, and relevance of the people that you talk to.

Customer Inquiry System

Here are some specific strategies to help you with your customer inquiry system in commercial real estate brokerage. See if you can add to the list based on your location and property type:

  1. INFORMATION: At the beginning of the conversation, get the basic information sorted. That will include email address, name, telephone numbers, business name, and location.
  2. INQUIRY BASE: Understand how the inquiry is coming to you so that you can track your marketing methods and marketing solutions. Soon you will know the best levels of marketing that work in today’s property market and within your location.
  3. FORMS: Use a standard form to capture information directly during any telephone call or conversation. At the end of the day the standard form can be loaded into the database with all other inquiries from the day.
  4. FILTER FACTS: Categorize the inquiries so that you understand how you can filter opportunity into the future. Category should include buyers, sellers, landlords, and tenants. You can break the categories down into locations, prices, and rentals.
  5. PIPELINE: Establish a pipeline of contact so that you can talk to people in a regular ongoing way. It may take several conversations before a person is moved to the next level of contact and communication.
  6. GOOD QUESTIONS: Ask plenty of questions with every client or prospect conversation. Capture the information into the database at the earliest possible opportunity. One small and simple conversation today can be an opportunity in the future.
  7. GROUPS AND CATEGORIES: Use a database that allows you to tag inquiry comments and prospect comments into certain groupings and property types. When the next relevant listing appears on your books, you can tap into the people already identified in the database within the tagged groups.
  8. SPECIALIZE: Any property buyer or tenant will have certain requirements when it comes to property type and property improvements. If you specialize within a particular location and property type then you can really drill down into the facts of every property requirement. As a case in point, medical tenancies and medical properties can be quite specific when it comes to fixed improvements and fit out configurations. When you are working with buyers or tenants within this or any other specialized category, you will need to know a lot about improvement requirements, property configurations, and usage capabilities.