In commercial real estate brokerage, you can and should prospect around new people every day. That being said, within that process you should develop a ‘Top 25 Prospect List’ of those key people that have a real interest and activity in the property market. They should become your ‘VIP List’ of important prospects. You will treat them differently and you will spend a lot of time getting to know them. You know that they can give you a lot of valuable and quality property business if you can ‘open the contact’.
Selecting those people will come from setting criteria around your market speciality and location. Generally those people will be similar to the following:
- Property investors that own a number of important properties in the local area
- Those landlords and owners that change property investments frequently
- Big business leaders and CEO’s that have a lot to do with commerce and business in the local area
- Larger tenants that take up significant space in prime buildings
- Some property developers that are proven performers in the local town or city
- Professional people such as solicitors and accountants with good property related clients
Within this simple list there will be 25 people that you should connect with frequently and directly in your town or city. You will know that these key property decision makers will give you a lot of opportunity when and if they ‘open the doors’ to using your services as a real estate agent.
So let’s say that you define and locate these people. The next problem is that they are likely to be already involved with other agents and brokers already. It’s going to be hard to ‘crack the contact open’ and get to know these top property clients and prospects. You will need a real strategy of contact with this ‘VIP list’.
Here are some ideas to help you with this special group of ‘high value’ prospects.
- Send a letter of introduction (not an email), and enclose your business card. In the letter you should ask for a meeting.
- Follow up the letter in a few days to see if you can meet with the prospect.
- If the meeting is declined, try the same process again in 3 months. The second to third approach to the prospect should improve your conversions to meetings.
- It is likely that the prospect will have an in-depth knowledge of current property activity and systems, so your meeting will need to be planned around ‘relevance’. Go prepared to the meeting with some recent information on the local area that the prospect may not know much about.
- Most ‘high end’ clients and prospects are very experienced business people and will not be pushed by any ‘cheesy’ pitch. Focus on getting to know their property needs and activity. Build the relationship so you can talk to them again at any time if the right property opportunity or need arises.
So these ‘VIP’ clients and prospects are quite special. Treat them that way and build your long term relationships around ‘relevance and speciality’. They will know a top agent when they meet one; it is your job to match their expectations.