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Commercial Property Agents – Use Checklists to Develop Your Sales Pitch and Presentation

In commercial real estate you need a top sales pitch to help you convert more business than the competing agents that you are up against.  In many respects you will only have 30 minutes with the client to convince them that you are the best agent solution to take their property to the market.

So many agents just ‘wing it’ when it comes to the sales presentation.  If you want to win more business the best thing you can do is create a great presentational model that is built on a ‘checklist’ approach.  Over time this will help you stay on focus and allow you to refine your approach when you find extra things that will work for you.  Soon the whole process of pitching and presenting will be so efficient and focused you will be winning more business of the quality that you require.

Your property market is something that you should know very well.  This knowledge and relevance has to get to the client in the presentation.  It can help you convert the business in a powerful way.  They need a local agent and that can be you.

Here are some ideas to help you build a presentational process and checklist that can really work well.

  1. Engage the client with relevant questions at the start.  To do this you should have comprehensively inspected the property and the general area.  In this way you can talk to the things that are important in the marketing campaign.
  2. Competing properties will impact your marketing campaign.  Show the client where those properties are and tell them of the pressures those properties present to the subject property.
  3. Every client will have issues and concerns.  You have to find them and the only way to do that is through questions.  Each question you ask should be taken to the next level when you sense that the client has some facts of relevance.
  4. Give facts about the market based on real evidence.  Those facts are likely to influence price, rent, marketing, methods of sale, and methods of lease.
  5. Tell the client where you see the campaign heading and why.  Clients like to see that we have a solid set of solutions and not just a generic approach to helping them.  Be very specific to the property.
  6. As a general rule, always seek vendor paid marketing and exclusive listings at all times.  These two facts will help you build market share and that is what you need to make your career strong and successful.
  7. Do not be afraid to walk away from a listing.  If the client is unrealistic or centred on facts that cannot work, do not waste your time in helping them. Let some other agent struggle with the difficult client.

Simple facts like these can help your presentational model and sales pitch greatly.  As the base of your presentation improves, you can modify the checklist approach so that you are moving to the next level of listing conversions.  Top agents do this all the time.

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Commercial Real Estate Agents – Cold Calling Frustration

Many commercial real estate agents find the cold calling process very frustrating.  They generally have a lot of reluctance to the entire concept and will avoid it at every opportunity.  The fact of the matter is that cold calling really works; it does however require personal skill and correct focus.

If you can develop a cold calling process that works for you as a commercial agent, you will find more prospects and better quality listings in the local area.  Generally you will find them faster and more effectively than the competitors and other agents in your area.  Isn’t that what the industry is all about?

To beat the cold call reluctance problem, there are a number of key factors to help you get the system underway.  Here are some tips to help you establish your prospecting model using the telephone:

  1. Perhaps the biggest single issue to get under control is that of creating a new habit.  The cold calling process has to be a new habit in your daily diary.  After many years of doing business in a different way, you now need to change processes to ensure that cold call prospecting features in your business system.  This single factor can take some weeks to achieve.  Habits take time to modify and improve.
  2. The successful prospecting process is actually built on a conversation; it should not be built on the pitch.  There is no point in pitching for something unless you know there is a need.  Given that most calls made will be to people who have not spoken to before, you will really not know if they have a need or a requirement in commercial real estate.  Questions are the key to creating a conversation.  The conversation is the key to understanding future opportunity.
  3. Many salespeople make the common error of driving the conversation from the first point of contact and talking about what they do.  The conversation, if you can call it that, quickly becomes single sided.  The people that you are approaching over the telephone soon understand that they are being subjected to a poorly skilled salesperson.  The general result is that the call will be terminated within the first minute.  The successful mindset of the call contact concept is that of questioning to see if the other person has a requirement.
  4. Some of the best agents are great conversationalists.  They don’t pitch.  They know that the conversation correctly formulated, will open the door for future opportunity.
  5. Define your territory and property type so you can focus your efforts in prospecting.  When you do this, you methodically move through the streets and the businesses to identify commercial real estate opportunity and intentions.  Some of the people you talk to will be tenants in occupation, whilst other people may own the property outright.  Either way you can help them at the right time.

Generally speaking, the prospecting process is not that hard.  It is just a mindset that holds back salespeople from attempting the skill development required.  Challenge yourself, change your mindset, and improve your client contact system.

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Shopping Centre Leasing Tips for a Better Tenant Mix

When you as a retail leasing agent are to lease a retail property, the terms and conditions of the negotiation will involve more things than a standard office or industrial property to lease.  That is because the typical retail business will have factors of trade and opportunity to consider.

The typical tenant will want to know all the factors of the property before the lease negotiation will become real and relevant.

You will need to tell them about the ‘big’ property issues that impact a retail tenant including:

  • How the property operates and how it is maintained
  • The prevailing vacancy factor in the property and how it is likely to change
  • The profiles and trade of the existing tenants (suitably generalised for confidentiality)
  • Who the landlord is and what their targets are
  • How the anchor tenant (or tenants) benefits the property
  • How the existing tenants specialise and attract customers to the property
  • What the levels of asking rent and outgoings are for the property
  • Where the competing properties are and how they impact your property in the sense of trade and customers

Could a poorly managed retail property with a landlord that is income focused, ‘wreck’ a retail shopping centre tenant mix?  The answer is certainly ‘yes’.   Some landlords do not have a real appreciation of the retail trade process and priorities.   Retail property investment, leasing, and management are really special parts of the property industry; they are not for ‘first time’ investors.

As a specialist retail leasing agent you could find some ‘retail landlords’ are quite inexperienced when it comes to the performance of a retail property.  If the landlord or property investor has just ‘graduated’ from industrial or office property investment, they will require some education when it comes to the dynamics and functions of a retail property.

Links and Relationships

In retail property, everything is linked, and a weak link in the chain of relationships can threaten the success of the property.  Here are some of those relationships.

  1. The anchor tenant attracts customers to the property.  What are the intentions of the anchor tenant?  How are they trading now?  How do they interact with the specialty tenants?
  2. The speciality tenants support and grow the attractive nature of the retail property to the customer base.  Are those speciality tenants successful now?  Are there any problems in the tenant mix that should be addressed?
  3. Has a customer survey been done for the property and what are the factors of property function that were identified?
  4. The trade or success of the tenants will underpin the level and sustainability of the market rental for the property.  The landlord for the property should encourage the property profile and marketing processes so the tenants can be successful.
  5. The well managed outgoings for the property are a part of the tenants occupancy cost.  The outgoings should support sustained successful trade and not become a burden on a struggling tenant mix.
  6. Is the property marketed into the local customer base and demographic?  If so, is that process successful and should it be reviewed?
  7. How the property is maintained now, and is there any need for property change or upgrade?  That will include expansion, contraction, and refurbishment.

The proprietor of the business entering the property as a tenant is going to need to understand the functions of the property, the landlord, and the customer factors of the local area.   Shopping centres are very unique, and the way they are managed and operated will have a great impact on the customer base and the tenant mix.