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:
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.