Many times I am asked about ways of finding clients and listings. Those commercial real estate agents that don’t do enough prospecting will always struggle with listings and commissions and yet they look for answers in the wrong places. The fact of the matter is that prospecting is quite easy as a personal system, but then difficult for most agents to sustain. Lack of focus and discipline destroys momentum and any system that they create. This can be turned around with the right effort and understanding.
What most agents need is a ‘custom designed’ prospecting system that they use every day; you can do the same. It doesn’t matter if you work in sales, leasing, or property management; you still need more clients and quality properties to work on. A segment of your working day should be devoted to finding those opportunities. Even as you proceed in the market and develop your ‘brand’, it is still necessary to find and talk to new prospects and clients. Whilst you may have plenty of listings currently, that can and will change. Prepare for the future by systemising your working day in finding more new people to serve.
In every calendar year, the ‘seasons’ of property selling and leasing will shift focus and activity. The only consistency you can apply to that seasonal shift is in the way you spend time in finding more listings and clients. You are the key to the process.
So I can help you find more new business and listings. Here are some tips to help you custom design your focus and client contact plan. These tips apply to the general part of the property market with prices of up to $10m.
- Understand the business and the listings that you require. What do you specialise in by property type and exactly where? Define a geographical territory of properties and property owners to research and connect with. Ideally that should be a zone of about 1000 properties.
- Within that zone (or town or city) define the precincts of higher activity and better properties. The quality properties in those areas will be prime targets for long term prospecting and special focus (once every 60 days). The other properties and property owners will be subjected to ongoing general prospecting (once every 90 days).
- To win new listings today, you will need to know more people and contact them in different ways. It takes regular ongoing contact to create a meeting and then convert a listing opportunity. Focus on knowing people and their property needs; ask questions about their property situation and how that can change for them over time.
- Make it a target to contact at least 5 new property owners per day directly; that can be by telephone, meetings, or in direct mail (if you send direct mail, make sure you follow it up on the telephone). Seek to meet with new property owners and as part of that strategy, create at least 2 new meetings per day. When you control the property owners, you control the listing stock, and others will come to you with property needs.
- Watch other listings, agents, prices, rents, and the property market generally. Drive and walk through your territory each day. Look for the changes to the market and how you can tap into them.
- Make 40 calls to the local businesses and tenants in your ‘zone’ every day. You will soon get some leads and opportunities to work on. Include in that contact group the local franchise groups that could be looking for property change or acquisition.
- Track everything you do in a database. Understand and record who you speak to and why. Keep in contact with the qualified prospects and property owners that you connect with or find.
So you can take this plan and shape it to your town or city. This is a system that you can shape to your needs. You can add elements to it based on your property speciality. This can become your ‘custom designed’ prospecting plan in commercial real estate.