In commercial real estate, every client will have different needs and timing factors that apply to sales and leasing activity. Those agents that build long-term relationships will find greater opportunity for listings and commissions. Whilst the concept is simple, many agents struggle with the discipline behind the idea.
Staying in touch with clients is a strategy and requires a system of relevant contact. In many cases, it takes about 3 or 4 approaches to a client or prospect before you will get a meeting. Beyond that meeting, the relationship has to be built.
Given that the activity cycle in commercial real estate is so long, it can be months or years before the prospect or client is ready to do something about a property. Top agents stay with the client relationship for the long term. As part of that process, you will need to know your client’s needs and focus factors when it comes to upcoming property changes.
Here are some ideas to help you with your client contact processes:
- Your database is quite an important factor in your ongoing contact system. Take ownership of the process. You are the best person to enter and edit your activities into your database. In that way, you will commit to the follow-up process and know what you have in the pipeline of ongoing opportunity. Each day the database can build and be shaped by the business that you require.
- Get to know the right people in a personal way. Over time you want to be able to make a telephone call and get through to them directly and easily. To achieve this level of access it takes time to build the trust with these people.
- Understand what these prospects and clients do with property now. They are likely to own other assets in the local area. Find out what those properties are and what could be needed by way of service over time. Be open to the variations of sales, leasing, property management, tenant mix, tenant retention, redevelopment, and relocations. One transaction can lead to another.
- Create property market updates that you can supply to your clients and prospects as part of a networking and contact strategy. You can distribute that information via email, newsletter, direct mail, one-on-one contact, blogs, and social media. These methods of contact are all different but each offer channels of opportunity. Ensure that your system uses as many of these processes as possible.
In our industry, opportunities always exist for the active and driven agent. You simply need a reliable system to market yourself and your relevance to your market. Take action every day for more opportunity.