Cold calling is and should be a critical part of the commercial real estate business particularly if you want to create more listings convert more clients. If you want to achieve real results as an agent or broker then master the skill of making new calls to new people and door knocking businesses locally every day.
It should be said that the cold calling process is quite difficult initially for many agents, given that it is a new skill requiring development. It requires a particular mindset, regular practice, a process, and ongoing consistency at a personal level. Most agents neglect one or more of those requirements and therefore struggle when it comes to getting results and improving conversions from making telephone calls.
Many agents think that they have enough knowledge and professional skill to get the results in making the calls. Perhaps they will have some usable skill, however practice will always improve telephone prospecting results and call conversions.
11 Specific Strategies to Make Cold Calling Work
Here are 11 specific strategies to help you improve cold calling new people in your local area. Use these tips as part of prospecting for new business in commercial real estate brokerage:
- Start Practicing: Practice your call contact script every morning. The practice process should continue for a period of two or three months or until such time as you can see you are getting traction calls that you are making. Given that you are talking to many different people you will find that focus and interest will vary between every call. For that reason there is really no specific script to use other than the first two or three sentences to get the conversation underway.
- Research Your Targets and List: Research your list and call targets so that you can reach out to new people that have an interest in property locally. In undertaking the research, you are lifting the chances of getting results from direct calls. Research does take time and certainly will need to occur every day. The best time to do the research is at the end of the day or in the evenings when other business pressures have declined.
- Track Your Numbers: Keep a track of results and ratios from all of your call activities. Every day keep track of the number of outbound calls being made and the results that you are achieving in creating meetings.
- Quality Conversations: Start interesting and relevant conversations rather than pitch for a listing on the first call. In commercial real estate most of the business that you convert will occur through established relationships and ongoing contact.
- Quality Questions: Ask questions as part of the call process. In approaching any new person you really do not know the level of interest that they have with property, and the pressures they may be experiencing at the current time. Sensible conversation supported by direct questions will help you move further into valuable client contact.
- Make Plenty of Calls: Keep your numbers up in making plenty of new calls. Set a call target that you can achieve every day. It is very important to make the cold calling process part of your diary and business activities. Results start to come when you devote the time to the process and supporting everything through practice.
- Personality and Professionalism: Be friendly in the connection. Most of the people that we work with in commercial property sales, leasing, or property management are experienced business people. They are very familiar with working with agents and brokers. Show professionalism and respect in the direct calls that you make. You are entering their world as part of making the call. They may not want to talk to you at that time or may have other priorities. I go back to the point that your conversational skill will help you move the contact forward. Practice the words that you use and the conversations that you can create.
- Help People: Be helpful as part of making contact. Provide information that will be of use and of interest. Offer to meet the person that you have been talking with so that you can put a name to the face, and in that way they can remember you in the right way at the right time.
- Repeat the Contact Over Time: Repeat the process of contact into the future with interested people. It may be some months if not years before someone will take action in commercial property locally. Help those people remember you at the right time by undertaking a regular call contact cycle or establishing a meeting request. Connect with the same people at least once every 60 to 90 days. Over time they will remember you based on the value that you can provide to them.
- CRM Database: Use a good database software program to maintain records of contacts and conversations. There are plenty of database programs to use. Choose the program that suits your requirements in property activity and type. It is preferable that the program is ‘cloud based’ so that you can access your data and information regularly.
- Personal Information and Value: Provide personal value as part of making the fresh contact. Far too many agents make calls without offering a value statement or spending time in talking about something of interest. Understand the factors of interest and activity in the local property market; focus your conversation on the things that are of value and of interest to business people and property investors.
So there are plenty of things that you can do here to improve your call contact activities in commercial real estate brokerage. Take the time to improve your skills and your systems at a personal level.