As an agent or a broker in commercial real estate, you should be selecting your clients carefully with due regard to ongoing business, the size of the property opportunity, and the realistic expectations of the clients. When you select a prospective client to work with, make sure that you are relating to the right decision maker in each case, and that you can create a strong relationship with that person over the long term.
To identify the top decision makers to work with, research is required and a directed prospecting process will be ongoing. Approximately 30% of your day should be devoted to direct prospecting activity and client contact.
There is no easy way to do this other than a diligent ongoing contact process at a personal level; that will involve understanding and identifying the right property owners, the people that run the major businesses, and the local property developers looking to seize upcoming opportunities with new projects. Each day you can talk to more people in your target market, industry segment, and location.
It is the case that every agent should have a small group of VIP clients and prospects. They are the people that can bring in diverse and frequent commission opportunity over time.
Connecting with your VIP clients and prospects should be a very special process so that you can understand exactly what those people are looking for, in what timeframe, and how they can move on the property opportunity. From just a few VIP clients, significant commissions can be earned over time. That then makes the commercial real estate business a whole lot easier.
Here are some rules that can apply to the higher end of the property market and particularly the best people that can bring you the larger opportunities over time:
- Their Property Position – In identifying these particular high value clients, understand their property position today when it comes to property ownership, income pressures, development opportunities, and portfolio expansion. In that way you will avoid any mistakes when it comes to property support. Ask plenty of questions; that’s where you will find opportunities to help.
- Develop Some Trust – Some clients can be quite wary of working with an agent until such time as they have developed the right levels of trust, and understand that the particular agent has the right relevance and skill. In establishing connections with these clients, provide unique services including price updates, rental updates, development changes, and property changes. The top decision makers are quite interested when it comes to recent deals, local area updates, and zoning changes.
- Repeat and Referral business – Repeat business can occur with the same client across sales, leasing, and property management. There can also be supplementary services such as vacancy management, and rental strategies. You can also find referral leads with the right clients. Ask the referral questions at the right time when you have completed a meeting, negotiation, or successful deal.
The message out of all of this is that you should not wait for new clients to walk in the door or call your office. Go out and find the best clients and the top decision makers in commercial property.