If you are a commercial real estate broker, you know how competitive and challenging the market can be. At this time, plenty of change is going on, so get involved with that change. Choose the best clients to work with and attract over time. They can be your key accounts.
Refine your prospecting systems. You must constantly prospect new clients, negotiate deals, manage contacts, and close transactions.
What if you could leverage your existing relationships with your most valuable clients and grow your business with them? That’s where key account services and management should come in.
Selecting Key Accounts
Key account services and management (KASM) is a strategic approach to building long-term partnerships with your top clients.
It involves identifying your key accounts, understanding their needs and goals, providing customised solutions, and delivering exceptional service and value. Doing so can increase client loyalty, retention, and referrals and generate more revenue and profit.
Factors of Change
Some clients come and go from the property market based on investment potential. You can work with buyers, sellers, or investors when it comes to sales.
Here are some things to help you progress with this. What would be the ideal critical account for you or the team across the following select criteria?
- Property type(s)
- Types of real estate transactions
- Frequency of transacting in sales or purchasing
- Fee potential by volume and frequency
- Historic investments or property activity
- Any involvement with other agents
The Systems of Account Management
Review all those items above, and then locate the people you want to put on your list of key accounts. Then you can start the process of building your plan. But how do you implement KASM in your commercial real estate brokerage sales? Here are some steps to follow.
1. Segment Your Clients and Lists
Not all clients are equal. Some are more profitable, loyal, and influential than others.
You need to segment your client base into categories based on revenue potential, strategic fit, growth opportunity, and relationship strength. This will help you prioritise your resources and efforts on the most important clients.
2. Select Your Key Accounts
Based on your segmentation, you can identify your key accounts and priority people.
These are the clients that have the highest value for your business and that you want to develop long-term relationships with.
Who are they? Where are they? They may not be the largest or the most frequent buyers or sellers, but they have other qualities that make them desirable.
Review each client. Consider client factors or benchmarks such as trust, collaboration, innovation, and advocacy. Choose key accounts from your allocated territory based on your set ‘client profiles’.
3. Allocate a Top Agent to the Account
Assign a dedicated account manager from the real estate team. That may be you or an associate. Each critical account should have a dedicated account manager responsible for overseeing the relationship and ensuring client satisfaction.
The account manager should be an experienced and skilled broker who can communicate effectively, solve property problems, and deliver investment results. Have access to the necessary resources and support from the rest of the real estate organisation.
4. Develop a Key Account Plan
Every client is different as will be their property choices. A key account plan is a document that outlines the objectives, strategies, and actions for each critical account. That will be your objectives, and that of the client.
Build the client contact plan. It should include the client profile, needs analysis, value proposition, service offerings, pricing strategy, communication plan, performance indicators, and action items.
The key account plan should be reviewed and updated regularly to reflect changes in the property market and client expectations. Connect with the clients across an entire year or years.
5. Execute and Deliver the Plan
The key account plan is only as good as its execution. The account manager should follow through on the action items and monitor the progress and results of each key account.
How should they do that? The account manager should maintain regular contact with the client and provide real estate feedback, updates, and reports.
Seek property opportunities to upsell and cross-sell additional property services and products that can add value to the client.
Remember the service links between sales, leasing, and property management.
6. Evaluate the Account and Tune Your Services.
Evaluate the key account performance a few times each year (quarterly is good). The key account performance should be measured and evaluated.
Evaluate the client and their situation; that will be against the real estate service objectives and fee indicators. You would have set those facts previously in the key account plan, so monitor that original plan.
The account manager should collect data and feedback from internal and external sources to assess the effectiveness and efficiency of the KASM process.
Take action. Identify areas of investment improvement and real estate best practices that can be applied to other vital accounts or clients.
Differentiate Yourself as a Top Agent for Key Accounts
Key account services and management are a powerful way to differentiate yourself from competitors and grow your commercial real estate brokerage sales.
Condsider the future with your clients. Try to build lasting partnerships that benefit both parties. Focus on your most valuable clients and providing them with tailored real estate solutions and exceptional service.