Just when you think you’ve laid out the best marketing plan to get a property sold- and everyone is just about ready to sign on the dotted line, that dreaded request comes from that seller. “We’ll give you the listing, but we want you to reduce your commission. ”Why is it everyone wants to cut your paycheck? The question might never come up if you do an effective job of setting up the value of your services at the get-go.
Far too many agents continue to rely on what has “always worked.” You know the drill: your company creates a lovely marketing package that explains their extensive network, MLS exposure, national marketing and more. Herein lies the challenge: Today’s sellers have heard it all and remain unimpressed with a long list of features, but are more focused and interested on what is in it for them and how you plan to market their “special” property.
As interest rates rise, and the competition for inventory continues to grow, listings become tougher to list. Today’s agents face adapting to more targeted and measurable marketing that also must be more revolutionary and differentiated in the process and results.
If you expect to get paid- think about this. You must consider most consumers look at real estate services as a commodity– a basic service available from multiple sources. There are over a million licensed agents, and a plethora of online do-it-yourself sites, discounters and more. What the consumers see is multiple options to get their property sold. The problem is most sellers don’t have a clue what questions to ask to make an informed decision. NAR reports over 62% of listings come from referrals. But that certainly doesn’t guarantee the agent services they choose are the best solution for their needs.
What are you doing to be better than or different from your competitors? How you address this concept is the difference between premium and standard. How you respond will pay you your “value” through the eyes of the prospect. Your job is to demonstrate beyond the ordinary what you do and how you do it. Literally knock their socks off and impress them so much they don’t even consider the issue of compensation! Here are some top tips to help you create a WOW experience at your next listing appointment:
1. It starts with how you respond to the initial inquiry. Demonstrate your immediate response program that connects your prospect to you in real time.
2. Develop and deliver a pre-appointment package with a delivery that requires a signature. If the seller is out of town, use an electronic version. But initiate a process that clearly shows your interest, and helps you to stand apart from your competitors. Include seller’s homework sheets, and set the seller up for expecting contacts from your team.
3. Develop a premium marketing plan. A visually stimulating slide show or marketing booklet that visually shows what you do. If you simply rely on MLS exposure, company networks, etc. although great, it limits you to what everyone can offer. Depending on the property type, offer programs that target and attract the niche buyer for their specific property.
4. “Wow” them with your unique video marketing. Include drone technology or high-level views for tough-to-see gated communities or waterfront properties. Virtual reality or 3D video tours are always something that blow the clients away.
5. Provide a retail value document of all the marketing activities and what each of them actually costs and add up all the retail dollar investment you are risking into the marketing of their property whether it sells or not. Ask them what items they would like you to remove to cover the reduction in commissions.
6. Go into the listing thinking their listing should offer a higher than the going commission rate to compete with the other properties in the market place and the little extra offering to the cooperating agents will make their home more compelling to other agents and not just competitive. It really isn’t much more but the impact to the cooperating agents is huge!
7. Have visual samples of all the marketing pieces you provide to sell their home for more and “don’t tell them” but “show and sell” them! Actually demonstrate the virtual reality technology, mobile lead capture technology, physical brochures, sample drone video etc. This is show time and not tell time. The more they are wowed and awed the less they even question the price they pay for your marketing plan.
8. Have written, or even better, video testimonials of past client experiences with you and your marketing plan. Let them share what they experienced and what was unique about you and your marketing plan and the value they received in return.
9. Explain to them the single most important skill in protecting your own pay check is the same skill they will want in protecting their own home equity in the negotiations. Someone willing to freely give up their own money will freely give up theirs in the negotiations’. How you do anything is how you do everything.
Stand out and offer such a specialized, value-loaded proposition that sellers need to have you as their agent!
Strength and courage,