It is an exciting year to be a real estate agent. Every day is the best chance you have to do something new, differentiate from your competition and build authority in your local community. To sweeten the deal, you have more technology and tools than ever at your disposal to achieve your goals.

But there is a skill you need to learn in order to leverage all of these tools, and you can even have a hand in creating new ones.

Learn how to complain creatively

Here are four tactics you can use to develop sales copy, work smarter and answer clients’ questions before they even think to ask:

1. Pay attention to the pain.

“The best way to complain about software is to build build better software.”

This is my favorite quote on creative complaining. It’s easy to complain and gripe about things that don’t work. What’s difficult is creating a better solution. It’s also what inspired me to build software that helps people fix their painful problems. Paying attention also creates an empathy that drives your interactions with other people and helps everyone learn more about what’s motivating their decisions. 

Using this same skill to listen and find the pain of your clients is where you can really discover the issues that help people overcome the objections they have to buying homes. Even if they don’t buy initially, I’ve found clients are more likely to return to the person who listens. 

2. Solve your own problems.

The next step is solving the problems and overcoming the objections you discover. Because you have the most control over your own pains and problems, let’s focus there. If you had trouble thinking of any, here are a few prompts to get you started:

  • What repetitive tasks do you spend the most time on?
  • Are there any connected tasks you wish were automated?
  • Is there anything you do offline you wish you could bring online?

Once you have the answers, find a developer or programmer who can help solve these problems for you. Anything is possible when it comes to software solutions, or you can hire a productivity consultant to point you in the right direction of existing apps that can do the job.

You can use a similar framework to solve your client’s problems. What worries them? Why are they moving? How do they envision life in the new home? By deeply understanding the issues, you can begin to solve them.

3. Share your knowledge.

One of the biggest opportunities for agents is in sharing their vast local knowledge with buyers. By consistently delivering value, you establish yourself as a trusted local authority. 

I don’t know if you’ve looked at the research lately, but “real estate agent” is pretty low on the trust spectrum. People assume we are withholding valuable information that could make or break their decision. The best way to adjust your personal ranking is to share all the value you can find.

Tell your community about fun events, farmers markets, new restaurants, reliable handymen, updates in the housing market and pertinent law changes. 

Why do this if you’re not assured a commission at the end? Because you’re smart enough to play the long game. Assume that one day, readers will become leads and leads will become clients because you’ve built up trust over time. 

Think of it this way: Mechanics are also low on trust, but what do people do when they find a trustworthy one? Tell everyone they know. You have the same opportunity to rise above the chaos. 

4. Keep asking questions.

As you become more fluent at uncovering the problems and challenges people have in your area, don’t forget to keep asking questions and seeking solutions. 

It might sound silly, but I’ve seen how individuals and companies continue to base their decisions on an initial data set, instead of consistently returning to the clients and workplace to find the needs and stay informed.

One of the best ways to do this is to get out of your own sphere of influence and pick the brain of a customer. It could be over coffee, lunch or shuttling between potential. Don’t be afraid to show interest in helping people solve the problems that keep them up at night. I’ve found that people’s actual struggles are much different than the ones I project on them, so I would have never known unless I asked.

By applying these four methods to your business and learning how to complain creatively, I believe you’ll find more empathy, awareness and opportunities than you ever thought possible.

What is a problem that you sought a solution to, and how has it helped your success? Please continue the conversation in the comments section below.

Matt Ragland is a brand and content strategist based in Nashville, Tennessee. If you would like to learn more about how content marketing and social media engagement can help your agency grow, visit You can also follow Matt on Twitter @MattRagland.

Email Matt Ragland.

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