Posted on

Getting Better Marketing Results for Commercial Real Estate Clients

To a large degree, the marketing results that you get today in promoting commercial real estate will help you with negotiations and client conditioning.  The property market is forever changing.

Seasonal inquiry will reflect in both the time on market for the listing, and pricing strategies.  The impact of seasonal marketing should also help you with the correct decisions when it comes to the method of sale.

In receiving the inquiry from your marketing campaign, you will soon know whether you are achieving the necessary volume of inquiry and the type of inquiry.  Don’t let a marketing campaign continue for too long without appropriate assessment and marketing or media changes.

You only have a short period of time where you can generate the necessary inbound inquiries to achieve inspections.  Here are some further thoughts when it comes to assessing the campaign for your quality listing:

  • If the volume of inquiry is too low, it will be necessary to recommend modifying and increasing the marketing package to capture more people.
  • If the type of inquiry is incorrect as to its demographics, you will need to adjust the marketing so that it reaches the right people more successfully.

At the end of the first week of the campaign, you should have seen significant results and obtained buyer feedback which will allow you to understand if you are reaching your marketing objectives and targets.  Depending upon the outcome from inquiries, you will make the adjustments as mentioned earlier.

It is important not to allow the marketing campaign to proceed without monitoring and without adjustment.  In most cases, the optimized promotion of a property will be for a period of six to eight weeks at the very start of the campaign.  Beyond that time the property listing will soon become stale and unattractive.  If the property has not sold during that initial promotional period, it is better practice to remove the property from public promotion for one or two months and then start again using a different strategy or method of sale.

It is standard practice with commercial property to seek vendor paid advertising with any quality listing.  This then gives the agent some guarantee that the client is serious about selling the property; it also helps the agent when it comes to controlling inquiry, creating inspections, and negotiating directly with the client.

It is essential to seek payment from the client for the advertising campaign prior to its commencement.  Many a client has delayed or avoided payment at a later time when it comes to marketing funds.  Don’t start to advertise until such time as the promotional money has been paid by the client and is held in the bank account.

As a basic strategy, keep in contact with the client on almost a daily basis from the start of the campaign to keep them fully appraised of promotional activity.

Posted on

Technology Tips for Commercial Real Estate Brokers Today

Every commercial real estate broker or agent today should have a technology plan to help them build market share, and customer contact.  We have so many great tools available to assist with the process.

The essential focus here is to allow technology to simplify your business life and grow your market share.  Certainly it can do that, as long as you establish the plan and a process.  Make commercial real estate easier for yourself in so many ways.

Here are some specialized tips relating to technology and marketplace communication today:

  1. Every opportunity in all your conversations and meetings, capture the e-mail information and the mobile telephone information from the prospects and the clients that you talk to.  Get their approval and consent for ongoing contact.  Remember that in any client or prospect today is likely to bring the value over time.  It simply a matter of remaining in contact for the correct and well-timed opportunity.
  2. Understand the challenges that apply to e-mail marketing and e-mail communication.  Ensure that you do not breach the spam legislation that applies in each case.  You must have the consent of the person that you are connecting with.  You also need to allow them to easily opt out of the process if they choose to do so.  It is worthwhile noting here that a professional approach to communication will usually minimize the loss of people.
  3. You should have a plan that relates to cold calling and prospecting.  The telephone numbers that you use should comply with the local communication laws and the do not call register.  Understand the differences in laws that apply between telephoning a business, and telephoning an individual.
  4. You can get a wide variety of auto responders on the Internet today to help with your management of your database and your newsletter.  All of the auto responders are very user friendly and relatively cheap to use.  You can create a banner for the newsletter so that your branding is consistent to the image that you wish to spread.
  5. Establish your blogging platform so that you can write articles and provide information relative to the local property market and the industry trends.  As part of that process, you can obtain a domain name that can be pointed to your blogging platform.  Choose a domain name that is either relative to you individually, or relative to the property speciality and location.  A well-chosen domain name will help people find you.  On your blog, make sure that you have an entry point to your database and auto responder.  Write a blog so regularly so that the search engines start to notice your relevance and experience.
  6. Get involved with social media and use a number of platforms to do so.  Choose two or three platforms that can work for you.  Link your blogs back to your social media activity.  You can also link your quality listings back to your social media activity.  Every prospect or client should be invited to join your social media group.  Update your social sites regularly with meaningful and interesting information.

So there are many things here for you to do when it comes to technology and commercial real estate brokerage.  Use the technology to market yourself personally to the people that you can serve.

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

Posted on

Energize Your Commercial Property Presentations

As a general rule in commercial real estate brokerage, every proposal that you put together should be benefit focused on the client. Show the client exactly how they will benefit from using your comprehensive services as a marketing specialist.

Use a Gantt chart to show the client the stages of listing, marketing, inspecting, and negotiating. This illustrative charting method is very effective when it comes to helping the client through a comprehensive and complex marketing process. It can also be a major point of difference in your proposal layout.

In today’s property market, the generic listing and marketing approach really doesn’t work. The competition in the marketplace is significant from other listings, and the experience and expertise of your competing agents and brokers will also place pressures on your listing conversions. Give the client some real reasons to choose you as the top agent of choice to solve their property pain.

It is worthwhile remembering that the client doesn’t want to be an experiment in marketing. They want their property to achieve the best levels of enquiry in the most effective and direct way. You hold the keys to the process and your proposal will need to clearly outline the strategies and recommendations.

Here are some tips to help you with constructing and submitting a proposal to sell or lease a commercial property today:

  1. Stand out as uniquely qualified to handle the property type in the town or city. You will need some testimonials and market evidence to help the client understand those situations and recommendations.
  2. Review the property for the strengths and weaknesses that will have an impact on the marketing campaign. The weaknesses may need to be addressed prior to the commencement of promotion. The strengths can be helpful when it comes to advertising layout and points of attraction.
  3. Determine the target market that will have a keen interest in the property type. Build your marketing campaign around the target market using specific points of difference and promotional processes that clearly tap into the target audience. Help the client understand those strategies and the reasons you are making the recommendations.
  4. Show the client how they will clearly benefit from utilizing your brokerage services and market coverage. Use your database as a point of difference when it comes to creating enquiry and spreading the message about the property. Create a shortlist of buyers or tenants as the case may be from the database; tell the client how you will be connecting into the short list of qualified parties as a priority as soon as the property is released to the market.

The focus of your proposal should be to attract the correct level of inquiry and generate inspections as soon as possible. When you get the inspections underway, you have something to work with and can then give the client feedback from those inspections.

Posted on

Getting Negotiation Leverage in Commercial Real Estate Agency

In commercial real estate agency each day, we are negotiating with many people across a number of challenging situations.  Our ability to negotiate is a key part of growing market share and improving our commission opportunities.  This then says that we should practice our dialogue and a negotiation skills at every opportunity.

A good negotiator in commercial real estate is one that understands the circumstances, the market, the documentary processes, and the intentions of the parties.  It is sometimes a difficult equation to bring together.  The clients that we serve expect their agents to be experienced and experts when it comes to the negotiation process.

So what are the negotiation stages and situations that we strike?  Here are some of the main ones:

  • The cold calling process is really a negotiation to establish a meeting with a new person.  Your dialogue needs to be exemplary when it comes to communicating and connecting across the telephone.  It is a specific skill that requires regular ongoing practice.  In this way you can build connections with fresh prospects for your pipeline of new business.
  • A cold call can also be something that applies to dropping into a local business to introduce yourself as a property specialist.  The dialogue in that situation is totally different to the telephone process.  This strategy can also reap significant rewards through practice.
  • A sales pitch or presentation with a new prospective client is a negotiation to achieve a listing.  That listing will involve a marketing package, marketing strategy, and listing process.  It is interesting to note that the top agents within the market are very good at converting a new property to an exclusive listing.  Those more ordinary agents in the market usually take the lesser alternative of an open listing.  Unfortunately the ordinary agents struggle with market share as a result of this, and have little control over the deal that could possibly evolve.  The message here is quite clear.  If you want to convert more exclusive listings to grow your market share, then you need to refine your sales pitch and presentation process.  A role playing strategy in your sales team meetings will help.  Personal daily practice will also be necessary.
  • When you find a suitable tenant for a buyer for a property, another negotiation stage will evolve between the parties.  It is wise to remember the requirements and intentions of your client as the negotiation proceeds.  Every stage of a negotiation should be carefully checked and documented.  When you get to the final stages of offer and acceptance, the agreement document between the parties should be legally accurate, comprehensive, and correct.  Some property transactions can be quite complex and for that reason you will need outside assistance to formulate the final document from the offer and acceptance situation.

Given these very common negotiation situations, you can see why dialogue improvement will help you strengthen your market share and commission opportunity in commercial real estate agency.  Practice is required.

Posted on

Tips for Managing a Commercial Property Today

The management of a commercial property can be a complex issue.  There are things to consider and plan for.  The management process simply doesn’t just involve the collection of rent.  There are many other things to do.  A skillful property manager has to be chosen for the property type based on experience.

The larger the property, the more demanding it can be when it comes to property activities and management structures.  The larger properties have complex lease structures, tenancy mix strategies, property business plans, and lease strategies.

Here are some things to merge into your property management processes whilst helping your clients to move ahead with overall investment performance.

  1. Most clients will be focused on the rental as the foundational issue for property benchmarking.  The rental will be in the form of gross income and the net income.  From the gross income there will be deductions for property running costs and expenditure.  The expenditure needs to be well managed so that the net income is equal to or better than the other properties of the same type in the same area.
  2. The type of property will dictate the levels of enquiry and benchmarks of market rental.  Review the local property market regularly to understand that your property is similar to others when it comes to market rental.
  3. The expenditure for the property should be managed to a business plan.  Every expenditure structure should be split into the categories that apply to each property.  That will include municipal rates and taxes, insurances, fire and safety, security, energy, and repairs and maintenance.  As you split the expenditure, you can see where the averages are appropriate for the property type.  If that is not the case, then changes need to be made.
  4. The tenancy mix and the lease structure will be quite important when it comes to the overall cash flow.  A tenancy mix should be supported by a good standard lease document that covers the requirements of the landlord and the property as an investment.  The landlord should consult with their attorney or solicitor to create a lease that is suitable for the long term cash flow that they require. A good property manager will understand lease terms and conditions and just how to administer them.
  5. The tenancy mix and the vacancy profile for the asset will need to be carefully tracked.  The vacancy profile should be reduced whilst the tenancy mix should encourage ongoing tenant success.  This then suggests that a lease negotiation is not a separate and individual thing.  A good lease is created to integrate into the surrounding tenants and the property tenancy mix overall.
  6. The maintenance for the property will be ongoing and should be manage to the expenditure budget.  Keep in close contact with the contractors for the building so that you can understand where the major items of expenditure can have an impact on property cash flow.  Preparation is the key to success when it comes to expenditure and maintenance.  Large costs should be managed to a time where the property can afford the expenses.

So these are some of the big things that will have an impact on your property management structure and service.  Take these things and refine your services to help every client improve property performance.

Posted on

Time Management Tips and Tools for Commercial Real Estate Agents

As commercial property agents, we cannot manage time but we can manage ourselves.  When it comes to succeeding in the industry, you really do need a solid system of control when it comes to your business day.  When you get this right, you will drive better business for yourself in any market.

If you think any local property market decline is removing your market share and not giving you leads, take a look at what you are doing on a daily basis when it comes to networking and prospecting.  Top agents prospect every day and in any market, and they do it well.  Top agents do not suffer the same pressures as ordinary agents and the reason for that is their prospecting model and database.

Systems will take you forward, and will help you connect with the right people in the right way.  It all comes down to what you do with your time each and every day.  Many agents struggle with the pressures of the day and the market.  They have no system to ‘stick to’ and consequently cannot improve their market share.  Without consistent market share, your listing leads will decline as will your commission.

So if this sounds like you may I suggest that a solid ‘dose’ of prospecting will help get you back on track?  To get things going, here are some ideas.

  1. Review your market to see what is active and what is slow when it comes to property types and locations.  Look at all the listings on the market now and determine what marketing and agency strategies are applied in each case.  You will soon see that ordinary marketing does not produce results when the property market is sluggish and tougher.  Direct personal market is far more effective when general advertising and market fails.
  2. Let’s set some rules for direct marketing.  Focus on getting out of your office for at least two thirds of the day.  The other third of the day can be spent in the office with cold calls.  Paper work can happen after hours.  Similarly you can talk to clients at the end of the day when you have more time.  Property inspections occur in the afternoon on most days as required.  Prospecting occurs in the mornings.  As you can see, this is a routine.  Perhaps you can design a variation of this to help you in your market; importantly however, the system that you create must give you a solid focus on prospecting outside of the office.
  3. Keep in contact will all previously established leads and prospects, however make sure that you are adding new ones every day.  That is why cold calling is so important to your business model.

Top agents get frustrated when people impose on their time and waste it; generally they will not let others destroy their focus and momentum when it comes to a daily plan of action.  You should be the same and protect your business time in all cases and situations.   Devote time to the things that are really important.  This will help you consolidate your listings and new business leads.