When it comes to prospecting for new leads in Commercial Real Estate, the process of getting to know each other is a lot like dating.
You have to spend a lot of time together, so respect, trust and simply getting along are a must. You want a long-term, professional relationship that also brings you a new word of mouth business.
Here are some key things to remember when trying to get the attention of a prospect and how to ensure you are top of mind when it’s time to do business.
Getting out there.
Both prospecting and nurturing have changed a lot since the old rolodex days of CRE. And just like dating, the pre-sale process can now start online. Start by researching some new tools that speed up the process of finding intelligence on the decision makers that you need to meet. In the dating world, there’s Tinder and a variety of other tools to find your future match. You might have to test a few until you find the one that works for you. But make sure it is simple, yet accurate.
Lead with your best self.
Both sales and dating are still a numbers game, so you have to figure out how many attempts it takes before making a connection. To make the prospecting process scalable, use your professional niche. Network and share information on that niche to help attract leads.
Then, when you meet someone, don’t start by telling them all the things you struggle with. You lead with your best self to show confidence that you can get the job done and what you bring to the table. Share the stats and show off your successes, but don’t be narcissistic! Come up with a simple, but engaging message, because sometimes, less is more.
Getting to know each other.
You got out there, you found someone – good for you! And just like you did some research on your prospect, they will check you out online too. Make sure you have some content to share or, even better, online reviews from previous satisfied customers. This will provide them assurance to continue the conversation.
You can learn more about their professional life, hobbies and other interests that might help build a connection. But don’t get too personal and scare them away. Just enough information to get acquainted. Also, don’t come off desperate by sending a bunch of sad attempts at getting attention, like one of those cheeky emails about being eaten by zombies…true story. These things take time. Especially in a business that has a long sales cycle.
Listen, listen, listen.
Now that you have made a connection, pay attention. Make time to keep in touch with intentional messaging that you know they will find interesting. Now’s the time to send that invitation for coffee, ask some questions and let them tell you all about what they need. And during that personal time, you will find out what makes that person tick so you can figure out how to provide the most value.
It’s not me, it’s you…
So you met up, heard their story and realized it’s not a love connection. Don’t waste your time on the wrong one. You just might let the right one pass you by. And if it’s meant to be, they will come back!
Build Trust for the Long Term.
Previously, I said to lead with your best self, but now’s the time to start being totally honest. Start showing that they can trust you. Sure, everyone wants to hear only the good things, but providing honesty will reassure them you won’t try to pull one over on them during a deal. Building that trust will help this relationship go the distance.
Never stop dating.
Keep in touch, stay interesting and stay interested! In my 5 years at Ascendix, many of my leads and prospects went with the competition. Promises of easier and cheaper options were made, but I was here with open arms when it didn’t work out. Building trust allowed us to get the business for the long term because we proved to be both knowledgeable and reliable.
Ascendix is co-hosting a webinar to review Prospecting and Nurture Marketing Tools and Best Practices for Commercial Real Estate. With words like “Prospecting” and “Nurturing”, it just made sense to host this event on Valentine’s Day!
CRE Tech subject matter experts Duke Long and Wes Snow are going to share best practices and tools that can help you streamline the process, while increasing your prospects. They have worked on different sides of CRE Tech so you will benefit from their unique points of view of how you can automate the prospecting process, even when all of your time is currently taken up by a deal. Good luck out there!