Top 3 Listing Scripts For 2020

Top 3 Listing Scripts for 2020

How many real estate listing appointments have you been on in the past month? How many did you close?

For most of us, it’s crucial that we nail each and every listing appointment we get.

At Creath Partners, our associated brokerage, co-owner and listing expert agent, Garry Creath, used to go on a listing appointment every day, six days per week. He and his business partner maintained between 50 and 75 active listings at any given time.

During that time, Garry perfected the scripts he used through continuous testing and improvement. And now, he’s revealing exactly what he said to win those new listings, over and over again!

Out of all of Garry’s scripts, we picked the top 3 to share with all of you (plus a special bonus).

 Script 1: Closing the Deal 

At the end of the listing appointment is where a lot of Agents start to fall off of…

It’s not enough to just have a killer listing presentation, you also need to closing script that leaves your prospective clients with the memory of how competent you are and exactly how you’ll sell their home. 

This script provides exactly what to say AFTER the listing appointment when it’s time to make the agreement and get your prospective client to sign on the dotted line.

For what to do DURING the listing appointment, check out our blog post on Your 2020 Listing Presentation.  

PRO TIP: Use the information from this blog in conjunction with what we gave you in the blog “Your 2020 Listing Presentation” and really SHINE on your next listing appointment! 

Script 2: Expired Listing 

As real estate agents, we are often taught to reach out to expired listings in the MLS as a way to prospect for clients.

You may have even been given this script in the past, “Hey I saw that your home is no longer available for sale. I have a buyer who may be interested and I’d like to come by and preview it.”

Perhaps you didn’t really have a buyer, but were told this was a good way to get your foot in the door. However, in many cases, the seller has already gotten calls from 10 other Realtors claiming the exact same thing.

Instead of starting out with the same boring gimmick other Realtors use, Garry uses a different approach. 

PRO TIP: Interested in expired listings being part of your specialty? Check out our blog post “Scripts and Templates to Turn Expired Listing Leads Into Clients” and download our free report, “How to Turn Expired Listings into Clients”.

Script 3: Discounting Commission

In any marketplace, if consumers believe that everything is exactly the same (i.e. a commodity) they choose what they are going to buy—or who they are going to work with—based on price. If all real estate agents are the same, they’re going to hire the one who discounts their commission the most.

As a professional, we never want to be in a position where we are forced to give up our hard-earned commission to win a new listing. That’s why it’s so important for us to compete on value rather than price. We need to create a story for our clients to illustrate how we are different from the competition, and how those differences will benefit them.

In fact, don’t leave it to chance and have only ONE thing that differentiates you. Differentiate yourself at every step (even with how you say “No” to discounting your commission) so that the customer will remember you for everything that is different.

PRO TIP: Make sure to do your homework (and the math) before-hand so you’re able to answer any questions they throw at you. Even if you don’t think you’ll need it, it’s always better to have it on hand than to be stuck trying to get out your calculator during your appointment! 

Bonus Script: Online Contact

How many times have you gotten the message (or a variation of), “I’m just looking for information, but I’m not ready to make any moves quite yet”…?

Two of the absolutely worst ways to handle this situation (yet, unfortunately, two of the most common) are to: 

  1. Overwhelm the prospective buyer by moving too fast or trying to pressure them into meeting before they are ready. This can turn them off to you as a realtor completely before they’re even ready to make a decision. 

  2. Ignore the prospect completely, or send a one-off message of “When you’re ready I’ll be here”, without any other information or help. 

Instead of scaring them off, or ignoring them completely, give them some information they can use and a reason to come back to you. 

Garry likes to offer his Buyer Direct Program and then obtains the prospects email address to add to his database and make sure they get the information they need. 

PRO TIP: Setup your social media direct messaging to be automatically respond to messages so that you’re not constantly tied to your phone or computer. 

Now that you know exactly what to say, you’ll be armed with the perfect response to any situation. 

If you’re interested in more tools, scripts, and strategies to help you with your real estate business you’ll want to tune-in to our next FREE webinar training! 

Author
Sarah Dibiasi

3 Ways Real Estate Agents Can Utilize Digital Marketing to Improve Sales

3 Ways Real Estate Agents Can Utilize Digital Marketing to Improve Sales

It’s no secret that, when it comes to the real estate market, competition is the name of the game. So, in an age when prospective buyers can see inside the living room of a home for sale 2,000 miles away, adapting your online marketing strategy to highlight your services and secure a sale should be at the top of your priority list.

An extension of your sales skill set, digital marketing will see you refine your strategy in line with this century’s digital shift, helping you hone your craft to the benefit of your sales figures. From optimizing your onsite content to targeting your audience through email campaigns, in this article, we’ll offer a range of actionable tips to help boost your sales ratings and future-proof your career this year and beyond.

Invest in email marketing

According to Smart Insights, a successful email campaign should expect to achieve a click-through rate of between 10% and 15% and, according to the email benchmark compilation from IBM, those sent from businesses within the real estate sector currently have an average click-through rate of 10.2%. While this is encouraging in theory, for those of you just starting to integrate email campaigns into your digital marketing strategy, competition is fierce and you may not be able to expect these sorts of figures immediately.

Email campaigns are a valuable marketing tool used to connect with new leads and nurture existing ones, but it’s not quite as simple as sitting down and creating your first campaign, then sending it out to your subscribers. An effective campaign will make use of well-researched audience segmentation and personalized content that engages the recipient providing them with the vital trigger needed to contact you in an offline capacity..

Focus on user experience

How likely would you be to close down a website upon discovering that it doesn’t load quickly enough? We’d guess pretty likely. With so many elements on a real estate website being used all at once—from photos and videos to contact links and maps—these sites can, in many cases, be incredibly slow to load on both desktop and mobile platforms. Understandably, this can cause users to bounce straight off your site and click the next search result in pursuit of a more satisfying experience.

With this in mind, it’s crucial you consider how well-optimized your website is for the user. This should be done by thinking about how easy it is to navigate (through filters and category pages), how fast your pages load (on desktop, mobile and tablet) and how relevant and engaging your content is (does it compel the user to get in touch with you?). By focusing your online strategy on your user’s experience as opposed to your inevitable sales intentions, you’re more likely to create a natural, engaged customer base built on trust, helping you guide users through your sales funnel with ease.

Consider your content

In the real estate sector, more so than in many other industries, communication is key. As such, when it comes to communicating with potential clientele via your digital marketing strategy, content really is king. Be it the written word or video and imagery, you need to focus on creating high-quality content that captures leads by communicating a powerful and distinct brand voice.

To do this, you need to pay equal attention to search engine optimization (SEO) and user experience (UX). Professional content creation specialists are equipped to support you in this quest, creating custom content that targets high-value search queries as well as including relevant calls-to-action (CTAs) that prompt sales leads.

Digital marketing is a broad term and, within the saturated real estate market, it certainly comes with its own nuances. While, naturally, your end goal will be to generate more relevant sales opportunities, an initial focus on user experience to establish an online presence that ultimately helps you build an engaged following should remain at the top of your priority list. By fine-tuning how your brand is portrayed online, you’ll be in the driver’s seat when it comes to guiding leads through your sales funnel—remembering all the while that digital marketing is a marathon, not a sprint and patience in this industry is a virtue. 

About the Author: Tori Atkinson is the lead content creator for Paragraft, providing custom content writing services for ambitious brands looking to find and nurture their brand voice.

5 Reasons You’re Losing Clients

5 REASONS YOU’RE LOSING CLIENTS (AND DON’T EVEN KNOW IT)

It happens to the best of us. You see a hot lead come in, you reach out, and then….crickets.

Your first instinct is to probably write it off as a bad lead. But the truth is, “ghosting” could be a sign of a larger issue.

From the smallest mistake to a bigger picture problem, there are a number of reasons real estate agents lose clients before they even get a chance to talk to them.

Here are the top five.

You’re Out of Touch with the Market

Sure, this may not be your first rodeo. But even veteran agents can come across as amateur if they aren’t in-the-know on what’s happening in the market. When a client hires you, they trust you to be a market expert AND a real estate pro. This means staying up on local and national real estate trends, news and insights

Not only does keeping current make you better at serving your clients, it will make you a more confident agent. An easy way to keep yourself and your clients in the loop is by subscribing to real estate news sites like Keeping Current Matters

Add the articles to your website, share them on social media or follow-up to a client’s question through email. This is a great way to stay fresh and prove yourself as a relevant and reliable real estate expert who cares.

Your Commission Doesn’t Match Your Value

Any commission-based job can automatically get the stigma of being too salesy (ahem, car salesperson). Commission objections are a frustrating reality of the job, but an easy way to combat this is by making sure your clients know you are the trusted real estate advisor in your area. 

Become a market expert, know your neighborhood and constantly monitor trends and insights. You can do this easily by subscribing to real estate news sites like the KCM blog, getting involved in your community, becoming a regular on Nextdoor.com, and signing up for your local board of Realtors’ market updates. People will always pay a premium for a high-quality experience. 

You Bit Off More Than You Could Chew

You took on one client too many, and there aren’t enough hours in the day to cover everything you need to do. You slip up once or twice, and before you know it, a client has walked away. Raise your hand if this has happened before.

Ambition is an admirable quality, but it can backfire if you have way too much on your plate. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to help as many people as possible achieve the dream of homeownership, but it’s most important to make sure every client is getting your absolute best always.

That way, you’re the agent they recommend when asked, “who’s the best agent in town?”

Your Website is Outdated

If your website looks like it was built circa 1999, it’s probably time for a reboot. According to Business.com, 75% of consumers admit that they judge a business’ credibility based on their website design, so an outdated or poorly navigable website can turn away even the warmest of leads.

Thankfully, it’s easy to keep your marketing modern with today’s resources. Unlike the old days, you don’t need to spend $2,000 hiring a web developer to build it out for you. Tools like Squarespace, Wix, Weebly and Placester make it easy to build, customize and maintain your own website for 1% of the cost of what you would pay a professional. You can even easily link it to your KCM membership to get an instant blog.

Here are a couple more ways to brand yourself as a market expert with content.

Your Social Media is Nearly Non-Existent

If clients are checking your website first, they’re checking your social media next. Instead of filling your feed with real estate memes and home decorating tips, keep it professional by positioning yourself on social media with:

  • Your listings
  • Market news
  • Local events
  • Local businesses
  • Client success stories

Yes, it shows that you’re social media savvy. But mostly, it shows that you care.

BOTTOM LINE

Sometimes the simplest faux pas can result in a big listing loss. By avoiding these common mistakes, you could not only keep current clients but also make yourself more appealing to future ones.

Remember, recruiting new prospects costs five times as much as retaining the ones you already have. 

Building and nurturing relationships through content marketing is an easy way to make sure you stay the trusted advisor for your clients. Keeping Current Matters makes this easy with ready to-share market insights that position you as a real estate expert.

Author:

Keeping Current Matters

Excellent Customer Service=Meeting Needs and Exceeding Expectations

Excellent Customer Service=Meeting Needs and Exceeding Expectations

Here is something I have always found a little odd. Most businesses are aware that meeting customer needs is critical to their survival. As a matter of fact, on the sales and marketing end the focus is strongly tied to understanding what the customer needs so product solutions can be offered that are meaningful and valuable to him. Why is it then, that so many companies ignore customer needs when they design their customer service models? If it was important on the sales end, shouldn’t it still be important on the service end? Of course it should. If you are looking to improve your customer service program, look no farther than this vital principle: The key to excellent customer service lies in partnering with your customer to help him achieve his goals, to help solve his problems, and to address his needs. When you work hard to help your customer find solutions that will satisfy his specific needs, you are not merely solving a problem, you are solidifying a strong business relationship that can last for years.

So the next question is: How do you go about identifying your customer’s needs? Believe me, the last thing you want to do is run the risk of assuming you know what his needs are before you give him the time to tell you. So, you must start by asking a set of clear, specific questions covering issues like his problems, expectations, results, timetables, people, fund allocation, and level of tolerable disruption related to his organization or his life. For best results, listen patiently and carefully to the answers rather than simply quoting company policy. This is the first step in working with your customer to find real solutions to his problems.

There is another important principle to remember when it comes to providing outstanding customer service. Great customer service certainly means meeting the customer’s business or practical needs, however, what many customer service representatives fail to recognize is that they must also meet their customer’s personal needs. Many times, his own personal needs are more important to the customer than the business solution you help him to search out.

Each of your customers has four main personal, or “human,” needs:

1. The Need to be Understood – when someone contacts customer service, the first need they have is to be heard. They need confirmation that someone is taking the time to really listen to them in order to respond to their need.

2. The Need to Feel Welcome – anyone doing business with you who end up feeling like an outsider will not return. People need to feel that you are glad to help them and that their business is important to you.

3. The Need to Feel Important – ego and self-esteem are powerful human needs. We all like to feel important. Anything you can do to make a guest feel special is a step in the right direction.

4. The Need for Comfort – customers need physical comfort: a place to wait, rest, talk, or do business. They also need psychological comfort: the assurance they will be taken care of properly, and the confidence you will meet their needs.

If you intend to provide the kind of service that will keep customers coming back again and again, then your highest priority must be to focus on these needs.

While many aspects of customer interaction have changed over the years, especially with the advent of the Internet and email, there is still nothing more valuable than building a good relationship with your customer.

A strong customer relationship consists of the following four key elements:

Rapport – rapport is not as simple as just “getting along” with a person. Rapport is a mutual understanding and compatibility between you and your customer about each other’s key goals, problems, and needs.

Value – your customers need to see that building a relationship with you is valuable to them, both in business and personally. Developing effective solutions that truly solve their problems and address key needs enhance your value as a consultant.

Respect – also, your customers have to respect you in order to seek your advice as a consultant. It is impossible to build trust or a relationship if others do not respect you or your advice. Respect is built by exhibiting competency and consistency in everything you do with your customer.

Trust – if you consistently offer your customer rapport, value, and respect, you will EARN his trust completely. Trust is vital for establishing a long-term business relationship, but it is not something you can demand from your customer. Instead, it is something that he extends to you as a result of the way you respond to him over time.

If you want to build a solid bond of trust between you and your customer, then never deliver less than he or she expects of you. The better you fulfill their expectations, the higher the trust level they will have for you in the future. And don’t forget: it only takes a few incidents of failure to meet their expectations to cost you their trust, respect, and most likely their business as well.

 

By James A. Baker
Author, The Anger Busting Workbook,
Finalist, Book of the Year, Foreword Magazine
Founder and CEO,
Baker Communications

Eleven Habits of Highly Successful Sales Professionals

Eleven Habits of Highly Successful Sales Professionals

There is probably no more competitive or potentially lucrative profession than sales. Of course, the work is not easy: the hours are long, dealing with the unique expectations of customers and sales managers can be frustrating, and the pressure to perform and drive revenue is relentless. For these reasons – and many more I could enumerate – selling isn‘t for everyone. If there is one master theme that defines highly successful sales professionals, it is their focus on continually elevating their performance by identifying and deploying best practices in all aspects of their business, in order to effectively overcome these obstacles day after day and call after call.

It is quite possible that there are more books, videos, training seminars and websites devoted to improving sales performance than to any other business-related topic. At Baker Communications, we have more than 30 years of experience in helping strengthen the sales performance of many of the world‘s top sales organizations, having impacted over 1,000,000 sales professionals during our history. Over the next 12 weeks, we are going to distill that insight into the 11habits of highly effective sales people, and discuss how you can deploy them to boost your own performance.

Here is a quick summary of the habits we will be discussing:

1. Get in the habit of asking yourself, “How can I help?” Instead of, “What can I sell?”

Highly effective sales professionals differentiate themselves from the average sales pro right from the beginning by the perspective they have regarding their customers. For any sales pro, the pressure to sell and close the deal is very strong; almost all-consuming. For this reason, they tend to view their customers as means to an end. It is like there is a voice in the back of their heads saying, “If I can sell this customer something today, I can still make quota for this month.” In a way that is slightly counterintuitive, highly successful sales pros tend to approach customers from a very different direction; instead of asking themselves, “What can I sell this customer?” they are asking, “How can I help this customer?” This difference in perspective is quickly obvious to the customer, and this simple shift can lay the foundation for a long-term business relationship.

2. Get in the habit of asking more questions and listening more carefully

If there is one mistake that typical sales pros make with customers on a daily basis, it is assuming that they know more than they really do about the customer‘s situation and the solution that will best meet their needs. Because the typical sales pro is focused on the wrong internal question (“What can I sell?”) they tend to only ask enough questions to set up the offer they already intended to make before they even called the customer. This shallow approach will almost always cause the pro to leave money on the table, not to mention risk losing the opportunity altogether. Highly successful sales professionals come prepared to ask a comprehensive set of questions and then listen carefully and analytically to each answer so they will know how they can best help the customer and offer solutions that have real value.

3. Get in the habit of selling value over price

Because of the relentless pressure to drive revenue and close business, all sales pros are very familiar with the temptation to discount or give ground on other terms and conditions in order to win the business. With the customer right there dangling the deal carrot, and the end of the month closing in fast, most sales pros will take the money and run, especially in a down economy, even if it means giving up margin to do it. Highly successful sales pros understand that their company relies on margins and brand reputation to maintain viability in the market place. They also know that customer are more than willing to pay a premium for extra value, if only the sales pro will take the time to connect the value dots back to the customer needs.

4. Get in the habit of being flexible and creative

It is often said that customers don‘t by products, they buy solutions. This is where the average sales pro falls down, because average sales pros are too focused on selling products. Even in the most commoditized industries, highly successful sales professionals understand that when you can create options that are aligned with the customer‘s needs, you can make your product a part of a larger solution which the customer will find more appealing. Never hesitate to explore ideas and options that are outside of the box.

5. Get in the habit of building relationships across the customer organization

In a typical sales process, the focus is generally on identifying the decision maker and doing whatever you can to get in front of them with your offer. Certainly, it is true that it is hard to close a deal without the support of the decision maker. However, in most organizations, the decision maker is connected to and supported by a larger network, at least consisting of a gatekeeper and probably others. Highly successful sales professionals never underestimate the need to build relationships and trust with the larger network in order to gain insights into the organization and create credibility for their offer when they finally get in front of the decision maker.

6. Get in the Habit of Setting Goals

Typical sales pros too often let their pipelines set their agenda, doing the best they can to follow up on whatever leads fall into their laps and working hard to close whatever business they can however it comes to them. By contrast, highly successful sales professionals are outcome-driven. They define what they want to accomplish through a series of measurable goals, and they plan their customer strategies and activities to focus on achieving those outcomes. They certainly use pipeline as a guide and a resource, but they also refine and prioritize that pipeline in order to achieve the outcomes they are aiming for. For highly successful sales pros, time and territory management is not a buzz phrase used in sales meetings, it is a focused planning tool that defines what accounts they will pursue, and when and how they will pursue them. If at any point they determine that their activities are not meeting their goals, they quickly revise, reload, and start all over again. They never waste time on activities that don‘t produce immediate, measurable results.

7. Get in the habit of regularly, honestly measuring results

Some average sales pros can‘t handle the truth. They are uncomfortable with pipeline reviews and evaluation sessions unless they have had a good month and the forecast is positive. When the numbers are off, they feel like failures and their anxiety level goes way up. Highly successful sales professionals understand that the secret to success is in the numbers – good or bad – because those numbers always have something to teach us. Are the numbers up? Good, find out why and keep leveraging that for more success. Are the numbers down? Don‘t panic, find out why and fix it. Highly successful sales professionals measure everything, not just the value of the deals at the end of the month. Quantifying and evaluating every sales activity with every customer will help uncover the truth and point the way to more success in a way that simply counting the money can never do.

8. Get in the habit of cultivating commitment

Typical sales pros are excited (and a little relieved) whenever they close a deal. Highly successful sales professionals are usually just as glad, but they understand something that a lot of less successful sales pros don‘t realize: closing the deal is simply one step along the road to even greater success if they will only stay committed to following through with this customer.

Highly successful sales professionals spend 10% of their resources educating the universe, promoting the business to the community at large. They spend 30% of their time cultivating relationship with prospective customers. But they spend a whopping 60% of their time and creative energy continuing to cultivate trust and explore opportunities with existing customers. It costs five times as much to sell a new customer as it does to make the same sale to an existing customer. Typically, the 10th purchase from an existing customer is 80% larger than the first purchase. For this reason, successful sales professionals will stay in regular contact with their existing customers to make sure that the solution they bought is working well, and to quickly address any questions or problems that arise. They treat customers more like friends than as sources of revenue. Somehow, it always pays off.

9. Get in the habit of maintaining a positive attitude

We have already pointed out that selling can be a tough business. When the economy is down or the deals aren‘t closing as well as forecasted, sales pros start hearing a lot of “Nos,” which can be devastating at times. It is not unusual for the average sales pro to lower their aspirations, and begin to doubt their abilities at times like this. Highly successful sales pros, however, don‘t allow temporary setbacks to define them. Instead, their confidence in themselves, as well as in the organization they represent and the value they have to offer serves as an anchor to steady them. Their unique blend of confidence, optimism, and enthusiasm, even in the face of short-term challenges, drives them to look for opportunities when others are making excuses.

10. Get in the habit of doing all things with integrity

There is a slightly uncomfortable dynamic that seems to run in the background of many relationships between customer and sales pro. Most customers don‘t like being “sold to,” so they can be a little bit closed and even suspicious early in a sales relationship. To overcome this resistance, sales pros sometimes feel the need to resort to subtle forms of manipulation to help close deals. Unfortunately, the sales pro may win a few deals this way, but he is not likely to win many long-term customers. Highly successful sales professionals realize that it takes openness, honesty, and a distinct lack of self-interest deployed over time to create the level of trust with a customer necessary to build a solid relationship. This includes not only delivering great products and services on time and as promised, but it also includes stepping up to the plate and working with the customer to fix problems quickly and without making excuses.

11. Get in the habit of continually learning and developing your skills

The sales field is full of people who consider themselves to be experts. They have many years of experience and they have amassed a great amount of product knowledge. In spite of that, many of them consistently underperform, and in many cases this problem is caused by the fact that the sales pro believes himself to be such an expert that he doesn‘t feel any need to expand his skill set or learn anything new. This not only leads to complacency, it also leads to the real possibility that the sales pro will be passed up by other people who constantly sharpen their skills and leverage new technologies to create advantages where others find obstacles. We call these other people, “highly successful sales professionals.”


Author Information
Walter Rogers is the President and CEO of Baker Communications. Baker Communications is a sales training and development company specializing in helping client companies increase their sales and management effectiveness. He can be reached at 713-627-7700.