When you meet with a seller, what do you do to distinguish the services you offer from those of your competition?
One of the biggest complaints that I hear repeatedly from owners of real estate companies across the country is, "We provide our agents with these amazing tools and they never discuss them with their clients."
If you want to get more listings at the right price and the right commission, here are some simple steps to take that can make a substantial difference in your conversion rate.
1. What will you do to help the seller obtain the highest possible price?
Virtually every seller has the same goal: to achieve the highest possible price in the shortest amount of time with the least amount of hassle. The way that you help the seller do this is by providing maximum exposure to the marketplace. The greater the exposure, the more likely you are to find the right buyer who is willing to pay the best price for the property.
2. What all companies do
The old way to market properties was to use the "4P" approach. "Put a sign in the front yard, put the property in the MLS, put it in the paper, and pray it sells!" Today we would add two more P’s: "put it on your website and put it on social media."
If this is all you’re doing, you’re falling short in terms of helping your sellers achieve the highest possible price. Also, you’re probably receiving considerable pressure to reduce your commission because you haven’t differentiated yourself from the competition.
3. What does your company do that distinguishes it from your competitors?
The major real estate brands often spend millions of dollars providing great tools that are designed to help you obtain more listings. Do you know what those tools are? Moreover, are you discussing these tools when you meet with your sellers?
For example, I recently spoke at a company where they provided sellers with a daily e-mail update on their listings, including which properties had sold, which properties had price changes, as well as what was new on the market.
In addition, they also provide detailed Web tracking on a daily basis. For example, if I had listed with this particular company my property would have been viewed 182 times yesterday and more than 2,000 times in the last two weeks. Again, if your competitors are not discussing this service, there’s a high probability that the agent who does so will get the business.
4. Your unique selling proposition (USP)
The most important thing in persuading a seller to work with you is to make sure you discuss the services that will give them maximum exposure combined with maximum lead conversion. Here are a few ideas.
First, did you know that 90 percent of the calls that come into most real estate offices are lost because the person answering the phone cannot get the caller’s phone number? The simple cure is a toll-free call-capture phone number.
Call-capture systems have been around for more than a decade and provide users with a main number plus multiple extensions. You record a message about your listing and post it to the system. When someone calls, they hear the message.
As soon as they hang up, the system immediately sends the caller’s phone number to you via e-mail or text message. This allows you to respond quickly, often when the leads are still sitting outside your listing. Because you paid for the call, you are entitled to their contact information. This method of contact falls outside the "do not call" list because you can prove that they initiated the contact.
It’s also critical to syndicate your listings to multiple places. Many companies and multiple listing services are now offering syndication to real estate Web portals. It’s important that you share with your sellers exactly where their listings will be posted.
The best syndication services serve places such as Craigslist, FrontDoor, Google, Trulia, Yahoo and Zillow, among others. If possible, include a graphic illustrating where your listings will be syndicated in your pre-listing package.
Another sure-fire way to win sellers is to offer what is known as a single-property website. This is a website that focuses exclusively on a single property and uses the property address as the URL. Most sellers are extremely impressed when you set up a website that is devoted exclusively to their property.
A fourth strategy is to use video. NAR says only 1 percent of all agents are using video to market their properties. This means that if you incorporate video into your marketing plan, you automatically beat 99 percent of your competitors.
To make this even more valuable to your sellers, syndicate your videos. TubeMogul.com offers free video syndication services to sites such as YouTube, Google and Yahoo, and there are other online tools for video syndication.
If you follow this simple plan that shows the sellers how to get the highest possible price through maximum exposure to the marketplace and you demonstrate how you will do it, there’s a high probability you’re going to be converting many more listing leads into signed listings.