Two concepts that will thicken your wallet
While some real estate professionals focus on the shiniest gadgets or trendiest conferences, there are two simple concepts I use to immediately increase my batting average and I’ll give you a hint- neither involved a gadget or a light up pen from a vendor booth.
My batting average skyrockets when a client is in their cocoon of comfort (that zone in which they’re most relaxed and more or less free of significant anxiety). Have you ever wondered where some of the screwy reasons for not doing things come from? You’ve taken them to a land far, far away and deposited them on an unfriendly planet. You may even be doing so unintentionally with their best interests in mind, but let me tell you from sad experience that your good intentions don’t matter a whit when they’ve left (read: been forced out of) their own personal Kansas.
I’ve lost count of the number of clients who’ve acquired much less than they could have, even when using very conservatively prudent guidelines. Yet, due to their personal comfort zones, they simply cannot pull the trigger. You must let their sense of tranquility rule the day. It is their money, their lifestyle, and their potentially sleepless nights – not yours. What you’ll observe over time, is that they’ll see it differently when two major factors are brought into play.
Concept one: establishing trust
First and foremost, clients must know that you’ve got their back — period — end of sentence — no debate — case closed. People use agents to buy their family home or to invest for retirement for just two main reasons with trust being paramount. If they know in their hearts that you have their backs and their best interest as your marching orders, your relationship will be, at least for many, a new experience. Once they understand that you’re not going to let them do something silly (or worse, guide them there), trust grows tremendously. How do you do that though?
One way is to supply answers to questions they wouldn’t have known to ask in a hundred years. In essence, you show clients where the booby traps are hidden. If they ask a question with an answer they won’t like, give it to them straight up. It will shock them, because most folks in our business are too busy making everything seem like milk ‘n’ honey. Once clients know that your answers will be the truth, the whole truth and nothing’ but, they’ll relax like you’ve never seen before. Yeah, we humans want to hear what we want to hear, but when it matters greatly to us, what we really pine for is the unadulterated truth, warts and all. Once I learned that lesson (boy, was I stubborn), my day to day dealings with clients blossomed like a meadow on a spring day.
Concept two: undeniability of expertise
Your expertise must be unquestioned, but relationships don’t start out that way too often, do they? You must establish your superior knowledge and expertise calmly and with deliberate purpose. Have you ever noticed how doctors don’t get all excited when explaining why we’re wrong or misinformed about something? They don’t need to because they know what the heck they’re talking about, right? So do you. Grandma pounded into me as a child and teenager that whenever I began raising my voice, she’d calmly intone, “Point weak, shout loud.” You must always know that your point isn’t weak, it’s ‘what is.’
One of the most valuable lessons I was ever taught by one of my mentors was that truth doesn’t need to be sold. It needs to be disseminated, then supported by empirical evidence. Put yourself in your clients’ shoes- is it any wonder they’re a bit skeptical about what they hear from most real estate agents? It’s not that as a group agents aren’t trustworthy, because in my experience, most are. It’s that most agents simply don’t trust naked truth; they believe it must be dressed up to look its best. What they sometimes (most of the time?) don’t understand, is that truth, when dressed up to look better, isn’t the whole truth anymore. People know that. You lose. There goes their comfort level.
If you’re able to consistently demonstrate your superior knowledge and expertise, while giving them the straight unadulterated facts, your credibility will skyrocket. These concepts sound so simple, but are so rarely put into practice.