Have you ever been working with a client only to find out that you have different belief systems? I’m not talking about politics or religion – just that the information you’re trying to provide isn’t getting through because your client has heard different things from less trustworthy sources.
If we want to be effective, we need to slow down the process, do our homework, and meet our clients where they’re at in their own beliefs. That’s where we can begin to start changing their minds.
For this week’s blog, I’m going to give you four steps that will help you go from sales to service and establish trust from the very beginning of your working relationship.
Step 1: Stay Up to Date with the Data
When you’re sharing market knowledge, make sure it’s either recent or historical for the use of context, but never outdated. What was going on in our market four months ago is certainly not what we’re experiencing today.
As I hope you already know, David Childers runs a site called Keeping Current Matters, which provides real estate agents with the most recent, relevant market insights. If you haven’t subscribed to them or some other reputable market updates channel, I highly recommend that you do so.
And speaking of David Childers, if you haven’t seen our last episode of This Week in Housing, we laid out an incredible amount of useful information and went even further in showing you how to apply it.
In short… Make studying the market a part of your morning routine so that you can bring up the stats naturally in any conversation. And if you haven’t watched This Week in Housing, get on that.
Step 2: Have Visual Aids Ready
In a world filled with all kinds of fictional data floating around, your sources matter. Having a visual representation of the data shows your clients that you are connected to something bigger than your own voice – you are speaking for the market.
Also, isn’t it just comforting to see the statistics in front of you, neatly designed into graphs? It makes it possible for us to wrap our heads around it.
In step #1 I told you to watch This Week in Housing, and when you go to the video you’ll see a link to some free slides which will help you convey all the data easily to your clients.
Print them out, download them to your phone, and have them ready to pull up whenever you need them.
Step 3: Get on the Same Level
So, you’re all prepared. Now, it’s time to sit down with your client.
Before you jump into explaining the market, you first need to establish what they currently believe about it. There is a simple trick for finding out what kind of misinformation they may have been given…
Ask them! Step one in the actual conversation is to ask them. As she shared on This Week in Housing, super-coach Tausha Fournier uses a very simple script to get to the heart of the matter: “Mr. and Mrs. Seller, what is your understanding of the market today?”
By learning what they think, you’ll be able to pinpoint exactly where you need to start so that they are receptive to what you have to say.
David has a great follow-up question: “Tell me why you believe that.” It’s non-threatening and opens the floor for a constructive dialogue instead of a sales pitch.
Step 4: Share the Truth
Now that you know what your client is thinking, you’ll know how to address their hesitancies. If they’re worried about buying now because they don’t believe it’s their forever home, show them the equity they could build in five years. If they believe that interest rates are too high, show them that they’re still historically low.
Handle the clients’ main issues first before moving on to anything else. This is where your graphs and charts will be a huge benefit to you both.
To Sum it Up
Transactions are decreasing in number, but the key here is you don’t have to take part in that. You can choose to work harder, to stay up to date with the market, to constantly be refining your skills, and do better than ever before. The top agents will sail through this, and the rest will sink. But it’s up to you which category you’re in.
If you’re have any trouble connecting to your clients, run through these steps:
- Watch This Week in Housing and keep up to date with the latest market trends.
- Download the slides and relevant data charts to your phone and have them ready to show at any time.
- Ask your clients what they believe and why they believe that.
- Give a thoughtful explanation with visual aids.
When you go through this process, you’re serving your clients instead of selling to them; getting the sale is just an almost guaranteed side-effect.