How to Get Clients for a New Commercial Real Estate Business

When you start a career in commercial real estate brokerage, the ‘fast track’ to listings and commissions involves several things, the most important of which is your client list and the connections that you make with the people in that list over time.

The time factor of connection is sometimes lengthy so be prepared for that, and the growth of relationships will be required in many ways.  Be prepared for the systems and organization of all your client contact and networking.  There are rewards to be gained through systemized and professional contact.  (NB – if you are looking to grow your client list, you will get plenty of ideas from Snapshot right here – its free)


Target the Best Local People

Know who you are going to connect with and why you would be doing that; be very clear on the conversations that you want to have with new clients and prospects in your location.  Systems will help you take your momentum forward.

So, we all accept that the client connections are required, but the types of people for you to relate to should be looked at and targeted.  Don’t connect with all the local people that you can find; refine the process to just those people that you know are real value and the specific targets for commercial real estate activity of the type and volume that you are seeking.

Here is a list to help you get started (or at least make some decisions with):

  1. Specific property owners – target buildings and streets to find out just who owns the better properties locally. When you know who the people are, get on the telephone to create a conversation and or seek a meeting.  Don’t expect that you will win a listing immediately but open the relationship up with communication and ongoing contact.
  2. Business owners – with this group of people, I like to survey the businesses locally through a canvassing and street analysis. Look for the bigger businesses and those that appear to be ‘successful’ or very active.
  3. Property related professionals – these people will be the property attorneys, solicitors and accountants that would have clients owning local property. There are many different services that you can offer into this ‘prospect segment’.  Try sales, leasing, and property management across the property types that you know and understand. Offer the specialized processes such as income improvement, vacancy solutions, tenant mix changes, and lease negotiations.  Versatility will help you with conversions; use your local property knowledge as part of the process.
  4. Funds managers and financiers involved with property – you can have a good number of services available to work with these people; be clear on how you would work with them and why they need your services. Direct mail, emails, and telephone contacts will help you tap into the people in these categories.

The three groups of people are the sources of most of the local business in commercial property in a town or city.  It directly follows that your contact processes into the list will help you move ahead and grow market share.  Get organized and get active in building your list of important clients; don’t waste time with the ‘small fish’.  The professional approach is part of the ongoing business contact.

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