Dave Eller takes a look at what makes people really want to do business with you.
Would you say that your business is listing and selling properties? What is going to make people want to do business with you?
Generally, people do business with the people they know, like and trust. We call this the friendship factor and it is a vital ingredient in any relationship: business or personal. In Real Estate, knowing you will get you the listing opportunity, liking you will get you the listing, and trusting you will help with your negotiations.
How do sellers get to know of you? Through your marketing (whatever form that may take): brochures, open inspections, personal branding, social media or even word of mouth. Face to face meetings with potential sellers is probably the most important.
Once they have met you, they mentally form a connection with you. Then they start to notice you everywhere; your signs, your ads in the paper. You may have noticed this phenomenon yourself. Have you ever bought a car, and then suddenly you see that car everywhere. They have always been there, but you just now notice more of them. That’s your Reticular Activating System kicking into action. It’s the part of your brain that determines what you notice in this world. It works the same in a sellers’ brain once they connect with you. So even though you may have the same amount of signs and ads as another agent, the sellers perceive that you have more. And remember; their perception is their reality. If a seller calls three agents to talk to them about listing their home, there is now an increased chance that you will be on that list: because now they know you. Then its up to you to get them to like you: you need to sell yourself.
When you are trying to SELL yourself…many people will put up a brick wall; they don’t like to be sold to. You bring down that wall by NOT doing the hard sell. This is why our personal branding is very important. It is image building. And we must be aware of everything that we send out as part of our image. Therefore we need to ask ourselves “How does my marketing, my dress and my conduct reflect on me?”
Do we need to tell people how professional we are in order to get their business? Do we need to tell them how much we know? Do we need to scream out Mohammed Ali style ‘I am the greatest’? Does our marketing need to say ‘we are an office with integrity’ or ‘we work hard for you’?
I recently received a flyer in my mailbox from a young agent that I do business with. It was a professional looking flyer telling me all about the three awards he had just won at the quarterly awards night for his franchise. The problem with the information on this flyer was that there was no WIIFM (What’s In It For Me): there was nothing explaining the benefit to the homeowner. To me, as a potential vendor, it was WAFFLE: information that did not convey any real message. Rather, it was a real estate agent blowing his own trumpet.
I met with the agent and we brainstormed some ideas to assist him in getting his intended message to his audience; to help him connect more. We explored the meaning behind the awards and what benefits he could offer a vendor. This was the WIIFM. This now became the main text of the flyer. The secondary text mentioned the awards; acting merely as reinforcement to the service he could offer.
What you put out there is crucial. It demonstrates your level of professionalism. It can show that you are the go-to person. WHAT you do and HOW you do it shows your level of integrity. It can show you work hard. It says “I AM THE GREATEST!”
Mohammed Ali was more than a boxer. He was a product. Think of a great boxer…. think Ali.
Think a of cola ….
Think of a burger franchise ….
They are all products, just as you are a product. Like any product you need to be marketed and branded the right way.
Ali connected with people. That’s why they loved him. In fact, it is the athletes and sport stars that we connect with the most that we like the most. When we connect with them we feel we know them a little better.
Coke and McDonalds connect with people via their marketing and advertising: they sell the fun and excitement. They connect with us in a way that makes us want to be a part of that fun and excitement.
We also need to make that HUMAN connection when we sell ourselves:
- in our personal brochures
- in our videos
- with emotionally engaging marketing
- even at our face to face meetings.
Another agent I conduct auctions for told me the story of how he recently gained a listing (and a sale) simply from a phone call he made one year earlier. Simon was selling the home at number 4 in a particular street. An older couple came through the open home inspection. They made it clear to him that they were not buyers; their daughter lived in number 12, and they were just ‘sticky-beaking’. Simon conversed with them during their inspection and learned that they were about to become grandparents for the first time. In fact, their daughter was due any day. Simon rang the couple two days later merely to ask them if their daughter had given birth, and to congratulate them. He wished them the best for the rest of their holiday and let them know that he had received offers on the property at number 4 and was negotiating the way to a sale.
One year later, the couples’ daughter, who lived in number 12, rang Simon to have him sell her property. She remembered the story her parents had told her about Simon’s phone call to them.
It’s all about the connections that we make. Your efforts may not see an immediate result; however building relationships is important; making connections that last. It’s called building a pipeline.
When you connect with people they feel they KNOW you. Connect ….. and they will LIKE you. Connect …… and they will TRUST you. The more you connect …… the more you will do business.
So what is your core business? I believe that the core of any business is CONNECTION.