Five rules to win you better business
Speed is not entirely something you associate with estate agency. But believe it or not, the best of us move incredibly fast.
More than 50% of instructions won in situations where the client has had no previous relationship with an agent are won by the agent that responds first. In a world where stock levels are low and the gap between reality and expectations is wide, maximising every opportunity you’re presented with is an absolute must.
The early bird gets the worm is a cliche for a reason.
Here’s five rules to follow that will give you the jump on your competitors.
- Act immediately
Customer service isn’t rocket science.
Simple, repeatable tasks are the hallmarks of service excellence and they are are surprisingly clear.
Estate Agents who communicate promptly and get back to their vendors or buyers are perceived as more trustworthy, reliable and ultimately a better bet.
One of the biggest complaints (and this is backed up by countless companies who thrive off mystery shopping Estate Agents) is the delay, or complete failure, of agents to get back to enquiries quickly enough.
There’ll be Agents reading this that immediately think ‘yeah but we’re busy’. Get rid of that as an excuse today, or shut up shop - they are your only two options. There is enough technology available to you that if you don’t want to employ someone whose job it is to be the ‘Chief Customer Service’ officer then you can readily find affordable software that, while not giving you the most human touch, does the job for you.
- Leverage the best tech
Be aware of apps and time-saving software that can make your life easier, you’ll be hard pressed to find an estate agency that doesn’t say ‘property is about people’ and it’s true.
Tech is there to compliment what you do well, not replace you.
There’s a number of data (wink), marketing and productivity tools that can set you apart from your competition.
Consider dedicating a couple of hours each month to reviewing new tech built to help streamline your agency. You could even suggest to your team that everyone reviews their own piece of kit prior to one sales meeting per month to share the load and get real-life feedback from your staff.
We’ve seen it happen over the last 12 months with Homesearch in that early adopters are identifying themselves as unique agents and winning more business.
- Put your faith in video
The power of video lies in the high emotional content and engagement it offers.
The return video gets you, in terms of engagement and enquiry, is so disproportionate to other forms of media it’s almost ludicrous.
Use video in your marketing, use video for your instructions, use video for your prospecting and follow up and most importantly, when you’ve done an outstanding job, use video for your testimonials.
Customer testimonials can be transformed from lifeless words to heartfelt stories told by real people. Video is modern day word of mouth at scale.
Video is what gets your phone ringing.
- Be remarkable
By this we mean be yourself.
It’s harder than it sounds. There’s so many different people to learn from and so much content you can devour and look to replicate but it’ll never have the same effect if you’re just copying someone else.
You need to adopt the message and make it yours. This comes with trial, error and practice.
Consider creating a monthly market report (on video) as your first project. Or maybe a “Your Town’s market in 60 seconds” and putting it out on a Friday every week.
Content like this positions you in the eyes of your viewer as an expert, and if you’re consistent enough with the content and timing, you’ll build up your reputation as the agent that not only knows everything, but shares it willingly (something agents are NOT known for doing).
- Measure and get strategic
Measuring your activity, learning what’s working and strategically doubling down on that is key.
We all know Pareto’s 80/20 rule.
At the start you’ll do a lot. If you don’t measure what you’re getting results from then you’ll have no idea what to drop and you’ll end up running around in circles wondering what else you should add to the mix.
If you do measure, you’ll very calming understand what to take out. Do more with less.
Aim to review your lead gen activities at least once a quarter. Here at Homesearch we work in two week ‘sprints’. We track everything and learn what we did right (and sometimes what we should throw in the bin and light on fire!).
Make a list of all the things you do to get your name out there and win business, then get real about how effective these activities really are.
Can you identify a sale or client won by a Facebook campaign? Or from direct mail (still a thoroughly underrated activity if done right in my opinion). Do pretty pictures on Instagram work? What about emailing market reports?
Set a time to back in each activity for and give it the focus it demands. Once the time is up, step back to review what’s working. The data won’t lie.
Bringing it all together…
Something to remember throughout all of this is that when people get into ‘real estate mode’ they want to know two things.
- That they’re not crazy
- That they’re not the first people to feel the anxiety they do about the decisions they’re about to make
It’s your job to make sure they know these things. It’s even more your job to articulate that to them before they’re ready. That’s how you become the agent of choice.
Video works. It doesn’t matter if you don’t think it does, it does. It doesn’t matter if you’re scared to do it. Everyone sucks the first time. If you want your business to survive, you have to do it.
Remember to have fun and experiment to see what works and what doesn’t.
There are enough market leaders here in the UK literally showing you what they do day in day out for you to learn from. Don’t miss your shot.
To your success.