Tips for Finding and Working with More Clients in Commercial Real Estate

A good client in commercial real estate can be a massive opportunity in commissions and repeat business over time.  Finding the good clients to work with can take time, but the process is necessary and should be done on an individual basis by all agents.

The agents that struggle in any commercial property market are invariably those that do not do enough prospecting on a daily basis and therefore do not have a good source of clients and contacts.  It is a simple equation but it does require personal effort.

When you know what a client can do for you, the process of ongoing contact becomes a logical process.  Here are some ideas to help you:

  1. A prospect may not be a client today, but they may certainly have all the attributes of a good client in the future.  Comprehensively cover all the possibilities in sales, leasing, and property management.  Be prepared to talk across all disciplines.   A leasing opportunity today can be a sale or a property management appointment tomorrow or in the future.
  2. Some property developers and property owners have a number of properties across their portfolio so investment needs can be quite diverse.  When they own more than one property, the challenge of keeping up with rents, vacancies, rent reviews, new tenants, and options can be daunting.  Market your services to their broader property requirements and challenges.
  3. When you consider a property with multiple tenants or available premises, the tenant mix analysis and strategy can be quite special.  The facts are very apparent with retail property and shopping centre performance.  If you provide property leasing services, take the time to understand the strategies behind tenant placement, leasing and clustering.  Any tenant that you choose for a property should be well selected given the requirements of income, profile, permitted use, compatibility to the property and the other tenants; consider the long term occupancy potential.  Your leasing services should be quite special taking into account these unique factors.  Show the client some real reasons as to why you are a top leasing agent.
  4. A good client will have certain future property needs and targets.  On that basis you can seek to satisfy those requirements with some planned ‘off market’ transactions and targeted solutions.  Help the client with where they want to head with the right property types and income growth.  Remove the pressure from the client’s investment strategy.  Show the client what they need to do to stay ahead of the market today and in the future.

Seek to understand your property clients in all respects.  A good client relationship may take months to nurture.  Trust and respect has to be there before the larger clients will work with you.

Myths About Commercial Real Estate Agency

In commercial real estate agency today there are too many ‘myths and rumours’ around generated by agents that are the ‘poor performers’.  They are usually the agents that are looking for excuses for their inaction or poor outcomes in listings or commissions.  The market is the market, and we cannot change that; we can however take the right action to suit the situation.

Today’s commercial property market is something that requires understanding and adjustment certainly, but good commissions can be had by active and professional commercial real estate agents.  You need to know what to look for and how to tap into it.  Action it then required.

So what is it about all those ‘myths’ that we keep hearing about?  I guess you would have heard some of these comments from your fellow salespeople and competing agents:

  • There are no buyers around to purchase
  • The client will not listen
  • Tenants don’t want to move
  • Property listings are hard to get
  • There is no enquiry coming in from advertising
  • The client wants too much money
  • Other agents are taking my listings
  • Business is slow
  • It’s time to take a holiday

The property market changes and on that basis we need to change.  Every year there will be challenges with prices, rents, enquiry, listings, and clients.  The fact of the matter is that poor agents without a good database of clients and prospects to talk to will struggle.

Those agents that have continually built a great group of contacts will always have fresh business.  Certainly client conditioning will be required as the market changes condition, but today is an ‘agent’s market’ and on that basis we need to act.

Find those good listings and tap into them.  Quality listings will always create better enquiries in any market.  If you are not getting enquiries coming in, then take a look at your listings.  If you have poor listings then have a look at your prospecting efforts.  Everything is linked.

It is a fact that top agents attract the business in all markets.  The quality listings will go to them most of the time. So how did they reach this level of success and listing attraction?  They did the ‘hard work’ with prospecting and connecting with fresh people that are interested in commercial real estate.

The property cycle in commercial real estate is quite long.  It takes months if not years for some clients to act on a property issue.  This then suggests that you need to be building the right client relationships from the very start and keep the ‘door of contact’ open with the prospect.  That’s how you become a top agent.  Work hard and the business will come.  Forget about those ‘myths’ that low quality agents like to circulate to support their inadequacies.  Make your mark on the commercial property market.

Commercial Real Estate Agents – The Fortunes in Getting to Know Your Commercial Property Market

As an agent in commercial and retail property, you need to understand your local property market comprehensively and fully.  In achieving this level of focus, you will find opportunities for leasing, sales, and property management.

The commercial property market is largely based on relationships.  When you get to know a lot of people locally, the listings and opportunities start to evolve.  That being said, these clients and prospects do need to trust you as the top agent of choice in the local area.

Here are some tips to help you get to know your local property market at the appropriate level.

  1. You will need to maintain a database of contact information.  This is not something you should delegate to another person in the office.  The fact of the matter is that the database is your foundation of business and goodwill.  When you take personal ownership of your database, the information becomes more meaningful and relevant.  On a daily basis you should be frequently moving in and out of your database to make calls and capture information.  This then says that you will require the necessary computer information and computer hardware to do the job correctly.
  2. Split your area into zones of priority.  Some of those areas will be very active and desirable from a business and client perspective.  Review those areas so that you can understand and quote the levels of activity to the right people when you are presenting or pitching your services.
  3. Your property precinct, suburb, town, or city will have a property history that is real and relevant to your activities today.  You should identify the types of sales, types of leases, time on market, levels of enquiry, and region demographics.  That information should be relative to the last five years and be particularly accurate over the last two years.  These figures will show you trends of opportunity and change.  Top agents seize the opportunity and move their market focus as required.
  4. Get copies of the local development plans as they apply to commercial and retail property.  Understand the differences between the property zonings and the property locations.  A property location or zoning can have significant impact on the listing and marketing of any property.
  5. The supply and demand for commercial and retail property will change throughout the year.  An oversupply of space will saturate the market with excessive vacancies and empty properties.  You can stay ahead of this change by monitoring the new property developments that are being considered at the local council or municipality.  Whilst a new property developments are an opportunity for listings and fees, they can also skew the market when it comes to pricing, rentals, and incentives.
  6. Check all the listings locally that are held with other agents and with private owners.  Over time some of those listings will be an opportunity for change and perhaps listing with your agency.  Whilst they remain available for sale or for lease today, they will give you an indication of what prices and rentals are doing.
  7. Network into your area on a daily basis.  This means making the necessary cold calls and dropping into local businesses on a daily basis.  Through this personal contact you will generate opportunity and fresh listings.  Top agents are very visible to the local community of business owners and property investors.

You can’t win many listings by sitting at your desk.  Desk time is actually downtime.  You should only be sitting at your desk to make the necessary cold calls or to have meetings with the right people.  Every other part of the day should be outside of the office meeting with people and checking on properties.

No Brainer Top Marketing Tips in Commercial Real Estate Agency

In this commercial property market, you really do need to market yourself comprehensively and consistently to the clients and prospects that you deal with.  Your competitors will be doing everything possible to undermine your listings, attract your clients, and interfere with your leads and opportunities.  It’s a tough industry, but it is also very rewarding for those agents that can systemize their actions and keep up their focus.

What’s New?

There is nothing new here of course when I say that it’s a tough business world today; our industry is competitive.  Before everything else in commercial real estate, you must be a good marketer of your skills and services.  Every day you should be reaching into your database of contacts to consolidate your brand even further.

Here are some tips to help you consolidate your personal marketing plan as a top commercial real estate agent.

  1. From a marketing perspective, you will always get more leads and opportunities from quality listings.  This then says that most of your listing efforts should be directed towards properties of quality and desirability.  If you list low grade properties, you will attract low grade enquiry.  Get to know the right people with the best properties locally, and network them regularly.
  2. Each listing that you take on should be a controlled listing.  This means that your listings should be ‘exclusive’ by nature.  You should have control of those listings for a reasonable period of time.  Avoid open listings unless you really believe you can find the right person to take the property on.  Open listings are generally a waste of time given that you have no control over the stock.  In the open listing scenario, the clients are always listening to many agents at the same time and are therefore quite untrustworthy.
  3. Every quality controlled listing should be supported by a dedicated marketing program and vendor paid marketing funds.  This then goes back to the point and the importance of exclusive listings.  The equation is quite simple.  When you control the stock, you control the enquiry, and therefore you can close on more successful transactions.
  4. A successful sales or lease transaction should be communicated into the local business community and the surrounding property owners.  Any success that you have with a listed property is an excuse to spread the word of the positive result.  Be known as the local real estate agent of success and results.  Spread the message of your success locally.  Most of your leads and opportunities will come from the local property market exclusively.
  5. Every quality listing and exclusive listing should be personally marketed into the surrounding property owners and business community.  This means lifting the telephone to talk to the right people, and door knocking the streets surrounding the listed property.  Use every listing as an excuse to talk to more people.

In this property market today, there is an abundance of stock and a shortfall of qualified enquiries.  Some buyers and tenants cannot act in a market like this today.  For this very reason, every listing that you bring into your books should be optimized for maximum enquiry and market penetration.  Use that quality listing to get the message to the market.

You can get more tips like this in our Newsletter right here.

Top Commercial Real Estate Agents Need a Top Prospecting Model and Here is Why

When it comes to commercial real estate sales and leasing, you really do need to consolidate your territory around you as the agent of choice.  In most cases you will have many other agents in the same patch chasing the same listings.  This then says that you should have total focus on your marketing and prospecting efforts.

Given the law of averages that applies to sales people today, most of your competitors will be fairly ordinary and underperforming when it comes to prospecting and territory building.  Most commercial real estate agents lack a consistent and relevant plan of attack when it comes to building the local territory and market penetration.  I guess they would say that they have too many other things to do.

This then says that systemized agents can consolidate their market faster and more effectively than their competitors.  Whilst it is easy to say, is difficult to do; difficult in the sense that personal commitment is required on a daily basis to a plan of self-promotion and client contact.

You cannot list a property if the decision makers do not know who you are.

If the next year is important to you when it comes to quality of listings and growth of commissions, it is really important for you to now formulate your plan of attack when it comes to the listing territory that you control.

Here are some ideas to help you consolidate your market share and grow your listing opportunities.

  1. When one of your competing agents puts a signboard on a property, talk to all the adjacent property owners and business proprietors.  It is quite likely that those adjacent property owners or business people may like to compete with the existing listing nearby.  Whilst the competing agent should have already spoken to those groups, it is quite likely that they have not.  With a little bit of effort, you can open the door of opportunity around all of the other agent’s listings in your area.
  2. Check out the history of property sales in the area over the last 7 to 10 years.  The people that purchased property approximately four years ago and beyond are those people that are likely to again soon act when it comes to property sales and or leasing.  Determine that group of people and establish contact in an ongoing and relevant way.  Consistent regular contact will help you brand yourself as a relevant agent in the local property market.
  3. When you take a property or listing to the market, contact all of the local business proprietors personally together with all of the property investors.  This personal marketing process will open the door on many other opportunities and leads.  You need to get your name and face in front of more people to grow your market share.
  4. Every successful sale or lease transaction should be communicated into the local area personally and directly.  This means placing telephone calls and letters to the right people and the business owners.  When you create a successful transaction, it can help you consolidate your brand as a top agent.

Most of the business people that purchase and lease property today are locally based.  They know the local area, and they also know what their clients require as to access and property type.

Keep your personal marketing program specific to a defined territory and property type.  This will help consolidate your database and your local market knowledge.

You can get a lot more tips and ideas in our Agents Newsletter right here.

High Quality Lead Generation Systems for Commercial Real Estate Agents Today

In commercial real estate the prospects and clients that we serve are quick to judge you.  They will judge you by what you do and what you say.  They will also judge you on what you do not do.  For this reason it pays for you to be absolutely focused on positive connection and communication with all the people in your database and your client records.  Systems and relevance will help you with all your connections and leads.  Here are some tips from our Newsletter.

Relationships Are the Key

The main reason we win listings is through relationships.  Those relationships are with the right people locally.  Commercial real estate agency is built around the trust that you establish with landlords, tenants, business leaders, and property investors.

I was recently talking with a fellow agent that was just moving from residential property into commercial property.  The question he raised was ‘How do you establish your database and client base?’   The fact of the matter is that a system is required to take you forward as an agent in your local territory.  Without a system of client contact your career will go up and down like a roller coaster.

Massive Opportunity

Don’t make things hard on yourself with listings and commissions.  You have chosen a career of massive opportunity; you just need to the required focus and momentum.  Start today to deal with the contacts and database that you require.  Expect that the process will take time, but the results will come.

Here are some ideas to help you deal with the leads and prospect list that you require.

  1. Business leaders will be a good source of business in one form or another.  They may own or lease the premises that they are in; either way you can help them.  Business owners and leaders are easy to find given that you can use the telephone book and door knock on a few business doors.  These people are the easiest to network with and make contact.  You should be talking to 20 business people per day.  Ask the right questions and you will get some valuable information that you can do something with.
  2. Property investors will come to you from other marketing efforts, or perhaps the branding and marketing of your office or agency.  Get to know these people and the type of help that they require.  As a local investor they like to work with agents that really know the local area and how to tap into the deals.  Even in the toughest of property markets there will always be property investors looking for good quality property or tenants.
  3. Property developers come and go from the market based on the supply and demand for leased space and property ownership.  You can get good property business from them, however they require understanding and they should not be trusted until you have their name on a valid appointment to act.  Property developers are very good at using agents without paying fees.  Don’t fall into the trap of service without fees.

With these three groups of people you can develop your lead generation system and market share.  Prospect into these groups every day; soon you will see your leads grow and the listing opportunity open up.

You can get more tips for commercial real estate agents in our Newsletter.

Two Words That Can Change Cold Calling Results Forever

In commercial real estate agency today so many salespeople and leasing executives struggle with cold calling.  They find it frustrating and quite soon they will find something else to do.  Unfortunately cold call prospecting is then avoided for the future; they incorrectly move away from the one thing that can change their lead conversions forever.

So what stops you from making the calls?  Here is a good list:

  1. Poor organisation
  2. Call reluctance
  3. No dialogue
  4. Distractions
  5. No momentum
  6. No database
  7. Lack of a prospect list
  8. Meetings
  9. Clients, etc

Make no mistake, cold calling is hard but it does produce volumes of results when you improve your call contact systems.  It takes a mindset and a process that should be practiced.

All of this being said, there are some very simple things that you can do that will help you radically with the call contact process; one of the most effective is based on two simple words.  The words are ‘stand up’.

When I say ‘stand up’ I am referring to you standing up when you make your contact and cold calls.  So many top real estate agents do it; you probably do it now when you are making a mobile telephone call as you walk!

The fact of the matter is that your call quality and conversational ability is a lot higher when you stand up and talk on the telephone.  There is something in moving and talking at the same time that goes well together.  Whatever the secret is, you should try it and use it.

The benefits here are quite clear:

  • More call confidence
  • Better conversational ability
  • Better tonality in the call voice
  • ‘Right brain’ thinking as you talk

If you put all of these factors together you will find that those hard to make cold calls will be a lot easier for you.  It really doesn’t really matter if you have clients and prospects in commercial or retail property sales, leasing, or property management, the fact of the issue is that you should be making lots of cold calls each week to people that you have not spoken to before.  That’s how you build market share.

Start to work on you mindset and use the ‘stand up’ process to improve you call conversations and dialogue.  Quite soon you will see some new confidence in the calling process; when that happens you will convert more meetings.  A good result, don’t you think?