Cold calling can be one of the hardest aspects of being a successful real estate agent. It can be tempting to think you can skip it, relying on mailbox drops and other traditional advertising to build your brand and generate leads.
That may get you by when the market is running hot, but when things shift and competition for listings intensifies some classic old-school cold calling becomes very important. The good news is there are some simple ways to prepare that make cold calling less daunting and more effective.
Practice and preparation
Confidence is important when it comes to cold calling and that comes from practice. Work with your colleagues, family and friends to refine your cold calling scripts. Just remember: everybody is different so be ready to deal with different reactions and responses.
And don’t forget that it’s not just what you say but how you say it. Start by being polite, enthusiastic and interested in the person you’re talking to. Try not to concentrate so hard on your practised script that you sound over-rehearsed and forget to listen to the person you’re engaging with.
It’s also a good idea to be prepared with helpful answers to common questions like:
What are your commission rates?
What will marketing cost?
How much will I get for my property?
How long will it take to sell?
Warm up your prospects
With effectively-targeted, automated digital marketing campaigns on platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Google, you can start to build awareness of who you are with some of your cold calling prospects before you pick up the phone.
With contact details like a phone number or email address, these prospects become part of your target audience for branding campaigns that showcase your expertise, your recent sales, customer testimonials and your local knowledge. They can become an audience for your company’s Auto-Sold campaigns showcasing successful sales and they can become an audience for local listing campaigns.
With your ads finding these prospects online before you cold call them, your call may just be a bit less “cold” because your name will be familiar.
If you weren’t able to secure an in-person meeting with your prospect during your call, in your CRM or database write down notes from your conversation that include any additional information you learned about that prospect and their intentions regarding their property.
Put an appointment in your diary to follow up, and some suggested reasons for calling again. These might include shifts in the market, recent sales in their area, or other factors related to their specific circumstances, like an upcoming change in job or school. Having a good reason for a follow-up all that benefits the person you’re calling helps break the ice.
Refining scripts is a big part of successful cold calling. Research what other successful agents use and adapt them to suit your market and your personality. Being yourself is important. If you simply parrot somebody else’s words people will often pick up on it and you can seem less confident or trustworthy.
Here are some elements that all scripts should include:
A goal. What outcome do you want from the call? Is it to secure a new listing or an appointment for appraisal? Or do you simply want to sound out their future intentions? Do you want to gauge a potential buyer’s price range for the local area, or vendor’s sale price expectations?
Enthusiasm. Be positive and upbeat about the possibilities and show you're excited about working with the person you’ve called in the real estate market.
Empathy. Listen and show an understanding for your prospect’s pain points and road blocks.
Ask questions. As well as helping you find out more about your prospect, it also demonstrates you’re genuinely interested in that person and their situation.
Solutions. Don’t just hard sell your real estate business and your successes, talk to your prospects about how you can help them solve a problem.
Top tip: Learn from each cold call to refine your scripts and your approach.
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