When you systemise the listing process in commercial real estate today, you can improve the quality of the listing, the marketing, and the future negotiation. The best listing process involves a checklist procedure. Commercial real estate agents should optimise the listing process in this way.
Today we find that most listings are competitively tendered between several agencies. This means that your sales pitch for the listing may be the only opportunity for you to convert the business. Everything has to be prepared and aligned for the sales pitch and presentation process.
A good listings system will involve questions, checklists, and a gathering of the relative facts. When this is professionally done, the client cannot help but be impressed with your thorough and detailed approach.
Clients like to choose the agent of skill and experience. The only way you can help them do this is through displaying your comprehensive property procedures as part of the sales pitch and listing presentation.
Here are some ideas to help you establish the listing process and improve on your listing conversions. This can be the start of your listing system.
- The gathering of property facts will be the start of the entire process. That will be the information relating to the property itself, improvements, the property owner, the general precinct, and any leases or tenants in occupancy.
- Inspect the property prior to the meeting with the client. If you can meet the client on site, this will be even more productive and help the eventual sales pitch or presentation process.
- Get the history of the property and ask the client about their reasons for sale or lease today as the case may be. They will have specific needs in taking the property to the market today, and you need to know what they are. This will then help your final listing pitch and negotiation.
- Most properties today will be impacted by encumbrances, property interests, rights of way, leases, adjoining properties, tenants, risk, permitted use, and other things such as property improvements, design, and building compliances. Many of these facts will be influenced by the property type and the property location.
- Some precinct or geographical issues such as flooding, services and amenities, highways, transport, car parking, and raw materials may also have an impact on the property occupant for the property owner. It is important that you observe and question everything relating to the property.
- When a client takes their property to the market they will have an ultimate goal or target to satisfy. That fact will influence the listing process, the marketing, and the negotiation when it occurs. Work through these issues with the client so you can get to the real facts of the property as it is today and their needs.
The listing process should be highly professional. This will then help your ongoing business opportunities.
The commercial property presentation today for sales and leasing has to be quite specific to the challenges in the property market. Every client that we present to should be under no misunderstanding when it comes to the prevailing market conditions. It is your job to tell them exactly how the market reacts at the moment to properties similar to that owned by the client.
The property sales pitch or presentation therefore needs to be comprehensive and specific to the property type. When you do this correctly, you will achieve a listing that is matched to the market and a client that is receptive to the required ongoing marketing and negotiations.
Here are some tips to help your property presentation process today.
- As a first stage of the client connection, it’s desirable to meet the client on site and go through the property together. This then allows you to ask questions of the client relating to the property history, the usage, and their motivations for sale or lease today.
- Following that property inspection, ask the client for at least 24 hours of time to allow you to research the prevailing market conditions, and provide the best recommendations to resolve their property challenge. Use that time to correctly structure the strategies and recommendations that should be put to the client. Be quite specific and not generic when it comes to those factors and your final proposal or recommendation.
- At the start of the actual presentation, explain to the client the prevailing market conditions as you see them relating to the property and it’s location. Provide evidence from competing properties on the market today as to time on market, pricing, and best methods of sale or lease as the case may be.
- Over the last two years, there should be some market evidence relating to the achieved prices and rentals for that property type. Whilst each property result will depend on improvements and location, it is worthwhile graphing the property market trends when it comes to results, prices, and rental. Make sure you have inspected each comparable property so you can relate the facts to the client from a personal level.
- Be prepared to tell a few stories relating to other clients and market situations. It is surprising how stories will gain the attention of the client and help your presentation overall.
- As part of the presentation, use plenty of digital photographs on your laptop computer. Those photographs can be rolling automatically as a slide presentation whilst you talk to the client about their property. Most of those photographs should be of the clients property, the surrounding locations, and competing properties. In this way the client will be connecting with their property and your conversation. Avoid slides with any words. Pictures will help grab the clients attention.
Top agents today take deliberate effort when it comes to the property presentation and connecting with the client. Everything needs to be specific in content and accuracy. Expect the other competing agents to do their very best to derail your property presentation. You will not have a second chance to meet with the client, so every presentation needs to be the best.
When it comes to weigh commercial real estate listing, presentation, or inspection, it is quite likely that the parties will give you a few objections in the negotiation. Objections tend to be a testing process to see if you satisfy the necessary factors that the other party requires in making a decision.
Top agents in commercial property know that practice is always required when it comes to negotiating and handling objections. You can never do enough of this type of practice when it comes to commercial and retail real estate. Build some of those topics into practice and role playing in your team meetings on a once a week basis. Current market conditions will always give you lots of factors to work with and debate as part of offsetting objections.
So here are some strategies to help you handle the objections that will arise from property sellers, landlords, buyers, and tenants.
- When the objection is raised, you need time to think about your response. Some agents will take notes as part of the negotiation and response process. As you take the notes you can consider the alternatives in responding. Solicitors do this all the time as part of working with difficult clients and customers.
- Some agents will go for the strategy of a pregnant pause. This may only be a few seconds, but in reality it will seem like half an hour. When the client has given you the objection, consider the response before you come back with the comment.
- If you need more time, you can ask the client to qualify and explain their position further. Again, this is a strategy of delay allowing you to consider your response. When you ask more questions, the client can invariably give you some leverage to respond. This process is called a Freudian slip. It is used by the top agents all the time; it is simply a matter of asking questions and digging deeper. As you get the greater levels of response you can interpret the answers from the other party.
- If the client or the customer has particular concerns, you can acknowledge them and then restate them in your words. In this way the client or the customer will then understand that you can relate to their situation.
- Break the concerns down into single factors and matters. One big problem or objection is actually a number of issues, some of which can be resolved easily.
- Respond to the other party with confidence and local market knowledge. It is very hard for the other party to refute or reject prevailing market conditions and market evidence.
- Give the other party some clear stages of resolving the problem. Show them how you can move ahead and help solve the overall situation. Determine what their best fallback position may be if it exists. Tell them that they may only have one chance to close on the transaction. If the chance passes them by, they may lose the property enquiry or the initiative entirely.
In commercial real estate today it is incumbent on us to be confident and connecting when it comes to negotiating and handling objections. This process and practice takes time to perfect. Learn as much as you can in this specialist part of the sales and business environment.
In commercial property today, just about every listing will go to some form of competitive pitch or sales presentation process. This then says that you will be up against a number of other agents in the process. You will only have a short period of time to convince the client that you are the best agent of choice and relevant to their property needs.
There are some key factors to incorporate into your sales presentation to ensure that the client really appreciates the value that you bring to the process. Here are some of those key factors to help you structure your next sales pitch or presentation.
- At the early stages of the presentation, ensure that the client can see that you totally understand the property and or their current situation. Go through the elements of the property as you see them today, and restate to the client the focus or the requirement that they currently have.
- Every property will have distinct features and improvements that are relevant to a target market. Be quite specific in establishing that target market to the client, and give them some solid recommendations relating to how you will attract the enquiry from the market.
- It directly follows from the previous point that the property marketing campaign should be quite specific to the listing and the prevailing market conditions. Give the client some distinct recommendations and alternatives when it comes to property marketing. Get away from the generic advertising and promotional campaign. Give them something specific that they can see that is different and unique to your approach.
- Every client likes to be ‘special’ when it comes to engaging your agency and services. They like to know that you are committed to them in the listing, marketing, and negotiation process. They are three distinct stages that all have elements of engagement and specialty.
- You cannot achieve the levels of commitment to the client without having an exclusive listing. Make sure the client understands how an exclusive listing works and the types of feedback and interaction they will receive. If they still choose an open listing, then it is really just a matter of whether you really want the listing. Open listings will detract your focus from other exclusively listed properties. The client needs to understand that. If they are genuine in the listing process, they will choose an exclusive listing.
- Any strategy involving an open listing is really a waste of time for both the client and for you. Top agents will walk away from open listings. You cannot control your market, the enquiry, and the property promotion when it comes to an open listing. It is no secret that today most properties take time to sell or lease. The commitment and the marketing effort can only be directed through an exclusive listing.
- When it comes to connecting with the client as part of the presentation, some elements are not negotiable. Most particularly they are your market knowledge, confidence, and enthusiasm for the property situation. All three of these factors need to be correctly conveyed to the client so that they know that they will be making the correct choice when it comes to signing off on the listing with you and your agency.
At the end of any presentation, it is critical that you ask for the business. Top agents always ask for the commitment from the client as part of the close of the sales pitch. Don’t give the client an opportunity to avoid the process and seek further time to call and connect with other agents. Ask for the business.
In commercial real estate today, every service that you offer should have specific value related strategies. It doesn’t really matter whether you sell, lease, or manage commercial real estate, but it does matter that you understand the valuable outcomes that you provide to the clients that you serve.
Every person in your agency should understand the values that are provided by your agency and business. In this way every sales pitch and presentation can be improved and optimized. Consistency in your message is really important.
To win a listing in today’s property market, your services are to be of the highest value and of great relevance to the client. The generic approach in commercial real estate will give you poor results. There is no point in being like every other agent.
Why are you the best agent in the local area? It’s an interesting question. When you know the answer, it will be very easy for you to pitch and sell your services in sales, leasing, or property management. Top agents know how to do this and you should also understand the process.
When you look at the differences in service that can be provided, you can see specific values that are real and relevant to the clients that you act for today. Here are some cases in point.
Commercial Real Estate Sales
- The ability to tap into some comprehensive database that is real and up to date. That database will help you minimise time on market and create property inspections conveniently and effectively.
- The right methods of sale to attract the appropriate enquiry in today’s market. The method of sale should be relevant to the property type and the levels of current property enquiry. The ways in which you take a property to the market will send a message to the local property investors and business owners.
- The marketing systems that can help spread the message into the target audience for the particular property. Those marketing systems should be specific and not generic. They should reach the target audience effectively and comprehensively over a well-directed marketing campaign.
Commercial Real Estate Leasing
- A comprehensive list of all the business owners and business proprietors through the local area. That list could be updated continually to ensure that you know when those businesses need to expand, contract, or relocate into other premises.
- Tenant advocacy services that can help tenants to find the right properties in the right location. Tenant advocacy is quite a specialised service and it requires the services of a highly experienced leasing professional. They understand the lease strategies, rental types, and occupancy costs. They know how to put good leases together and can serve their tenants well. That being said, the tenant in such situation is the client.
Commercial Real Estate Property Management
- Commercial property management is quite a specific service and should not be undertaken in your agency unless you have the right people. A good property management service will include income control, expenditure management, risk management, property compliance, maintenance strategies, lease documentation, and tenancy mix management. Make sure that you have at least one highly experienced commercial property manager on your team that knows what to do and how to do it. They can then train other more junior people that come through the ranks.
- Retail property management is distinctly different than commercial property management and to a large degree is more intense. In retail property and with shopping centres, you will find that the intensity of management service is higher and therefore the fees are higher. You need the right people that have experience in managing shopping centres with large numbers of tenants. The fact of the matter is that a good retail property manager will help build your business due to the experience and relevance they apply to the properties that they manage.
So these are some points of difference that can be built on. Specialisation in the industry will always give you leverage. Make sure that your people provide the specialisation that your clients need and then send that message out into the market at every opportunity.