Listing Realities in Commercial Real Estate Brokerage

In commercial real estate brokerage there are two very important rules that will impact your career.  As an agent you constantly need fresh new listings, and you must get controlled stock as part of that process.  That leads to the some critical facts:

  • Controlled listings allow you to build your market share.  Those listings should be controlled by ‘exclusivity’ in the listing process.  The levels of service that you provide with exclusive listings should be superior in every way.  The duration of the listing exclusivity should be at least 3 months and preferably 6 months.  Your marketing campaign then can be built around the term of the listing and the priorities of the client.  Vendor paid marketing funds should also be sourced.
  • Good quality property listings will increase the levels of inbound property enquiry that comes to you.  Systemise your enquiry process so any new enquiries coming your way will be entered into your database and comprehensively serviced into the future.

When I talk about ‘exclusivity’ in getting listings with some agents, they will tell me that they cannot attract those exclusive listings simply because the property market in their town or city does not accept the process.

Many will say that ‘open listings’ are the norm for them and the only way to get the new business.   The observation is very common with new agents and those servicing industrial properties and suburban office properties.   How wrong they are!

The agents that take the ‘broad brush’ approach to the property market will usually only pick up an ongoing selection of general ‘open’ listing stock.  Yes, some of those listings will eventually sell or lease through a process of luck, whilst most of those listings will become ‘stale’ and stall or stagnate on the market.  If this is the market that you want to work in then you will need lots of ‘open listings’ to get some commission heading your way.  Top agents don’t operate this way.

The problem of attracting ‘open listings’ starts at the personal level; low agent skills, and generic marketing drive the problem.  There is no reason for a client to give ‘exclusivity’.

Here are 2 important facts about listing conversions:

  1. You will start to win more exclusive listings when you are recognised as an ‘industry specialist’; that is usually when your marketing campaigns are special to the property type and client focus.  Are you the ‘go to’ real estate industry expert that local people know about?
  2. The pitch or presentation to a client today for any listing is likely to be competitive and against several other agents.  If you are not winning a good share of your listing presentations (over 60%) then something is wrong with your presentation and marketing process.  Generic agents with a standard listing pitch generally convert only ‘open listings’ and rarely command majority market share.  How can you improve your listing pitch?

The ‘front end’ of the real estate marketing process is more important than any of the other segments.  When you focus on the ‘front end’ you will convert more listings and win more prospects or clients.  So how can you do this?  You can focus on improving your relevance and skills with the clients that you serve and the property type; you can then market yourself accordingly and directly every day.   You can (or should strive to be) the best real estate agent choice in the local property market.  How can you do that?