At the Massimo Group, and personally, no topic gets more questions than that of prospecting.
I’ve heard stories about how animals can smell fear. I think prospects can too. The truth is, there is only one thing you are almost guaranteed to be able to say on a prospecting call – the opening statement.
I know there are people out there that like to work of scripts – where they decided beforehand everything they are going to say. I’ve read books about prospecting and different ways to do it. Most I would not recommend. The best prospectors are those that get into a call asking questions and guide the conversation based on what they are learning.
Conceivably, no two prospecting calls should sound the same…save for the opening statement. This is your opening line. This you should script. This you should practice…and then practice some more.
This benefit statement should communicate who you are, who you work with, and why you are calling. It should share with them the benefit that lies in their future should they give you more time.
The entire purpose of this benefit statement is to earn the right for more time – that’s it.
Here is the template of my opening statement:
Hello Mr. [Prospect]. My name is [Your Name] with [Your Company]. The purpose of my call is to share with you [benefit you are offering to entice them to agree to meet with you].
The benefit you are offering them needs to be compelling. Maybe it is a market report (boring). Maybe it is a recent deal you did that is a comp for their property (exciting). Maybe it is some juicy market info that will affect the value of their property. Regardless, it needs to be enticing.
So I want you to script your opening statement. Practice it until it is as natural to say as it is to breath. When you get to that point, you can begin your calls with confidence – and not timidity and fear – knowing you are going to nail the one thing you know you will get to say.
After that – it’s up to you!
I’ve written a couple of posts on how to write a world-class prospecting system. You can find them below:
What I want to do in today’s post is share with you how to systematize it. It makes all the difference.
In fact, sales professionals should systematize for maximum efficiency with these 4 tips.
4 Tips to Systematize the Use of a Great Prospecting Letter
- Write one letter to many prospects – The purpose of the letter is to warm up the call. Therefore, you don’t want to spend a bunch of time you should use calling writing letters. You need a letter you can use over and over again. In reality, you probably will have a couple of different letters that work for different geographies or submarkets.
- Customize the first paragraph – A best practice here is to write the first paragraph in a way that can be customized. Use the address – sometimes that is all you need. Then write the rest of the letter that can stay the same for the rest or your prospective buildings/prospects in that market.
- Delegate as much as possible – We used to send 30 letters a week on average. My assistant printed the letters, hand addressed the envelopes, sent them, logged that they were sent and to whom in ClientLook, and then created a follow-up task for me to call them the following week. All I did was write the original letter and physically sign the letters she printed. The entire system was almost entirely executed without my involvement. After we set it up, I spent zero mental energy on it.
- Decide how many each week (it shouldn’t be the same) – A key part of the letter is to inform the reader you will be calling. Because of that, you never want to send more letters than you can call the following week. So keep an eye on your capacity. Do you have a particularly full week coming up? Going on vacation? Adjust accordingly.
If you would like a copy of a letter I used years ago with great results, just click the button below. Keep in mind that this letter is very simple. But simple works and can be very effective. In fact, I was taught the original version of this letter from a friend and colleague.
Download My Prospecting Letter
There is so much written about crafting a value proposition – or an elevator speech. I’ve written about it in the past as well. You can read that post here for information on how to craft it.
What I want to share with you in this post is how dynamic a value proposition can be – and the different version you need at the ready.
A value proposition communicates three things: why you, why your company, and why now. It does so in terms of the benefits for the prospect.
But it can’t be rote memorized. Your value proposition needs to be dynamic. When you explain why you, you need to do it in a way that speaks to your audience. In other words, if I’m speaking to an institutional investor, I may communicate how I produce returns for my clients. If I’m talking to a widow, I may communicate how I take the headaches out of a real estate transaction and simplify the lives of my clients.
You don’t commit intellectual suicide when you are prospecting. You have to think and anticipate. And then act accordingly.
One of any Marine’s favorite movies is Full Metal Jacket. If you haven’t seen it, know that it is very R rated. It is also a very accurate picture of what Marine Boot Camp was like.
In one scene, the recruits are reciting the Rifleman’s Creed. I, along with all my fellow recruits, had to memorize and recite this creed when I was in boot camp as well. It is one of the ways the Marine Corps indoctrinates its recruits. You can read it by clicking here.
I’ve taken the liberty of writing the Prospector’s Creed. Instead of a rifle, we have our CRM…
The Prospector’s Creed
This is my CRM. There are many like it, but this one is mine.
My CRM is my best friend. It is my business. I must master it as I must master my life.
My CRM, without me, is useless. Without my CRM, I am useless. I must use my CRM true. I must dial more than my competition who is trying to beat me. I must out dial him before he out dials me. I will…
My CRM and I know that what counts in business is not the calls we make, the noise of our presentations, nor the smoke that we blow. We know that it is the meetings that count. We will have meetings…
My CRM is dynamic and changing, even as I, because it is the foundation of my business. Thus, I will learn it as a brother. I will learn its weaknesses, its strengths, its parts, its features, its functions, and its benefits. I will keep my CRM updated and ready, even as I am poised and ready. We will become part of each other. We will…
Before God, I swear this creed. My CRM and I are the prospectors of my business. We are the masters of our competition. We are the benefactors of my life.
So be it, until the business is mine, and there is no competition, but complacency!
Lists. Anyone who sells anything needs a list. A list of prospects. A list of influencers. A list of connectors. Your database is where those lists live.
I have a coaching client who has a complete database mess. He literally has 3 different databases that live in different places. One list lives in this CRM. One list lives in that CRM. His other list is an excel spreadsheet.
But at least he has a list.
My first years in commercial real estate were full of fits and starts. I didn’t prospect. I simply relied on our company’s presence in the market. Business would just walk in the door or call. Or it wouldn’t. Even if I wanted to prospect, I didn’t have a database.
Again in 2010, I restructured my prospecting focus. I didn’t have a list. So I built one (actually, my assistant did most of the work. I hope you all have a Teresa.)
Regardless of where you are in your career, you need a database full of all the people, prospects, and/or properties in your farm area. It is crucial that you can go pursue the business you want. To do that, you need to know who they are and how to contact them.
My most popular post ever is on the 3 ways to build a database. You can read it here. As a recap, here are the three ways to build your database:
I am a Dave Ramsey fan. I think I started listening to him on the radio when I was in high school. His latest book, Entreleadership, is outstanding. I would highly recommend it if you haven’t read it already.
Dave has this saying about momentum. He says that momentum is focused intensity over time.
I love that.
Don’t we all want a little more momentum in our lives – or a lot? Momentum is that mysterious force that makes things go your way. If you share my worldview, you would call it favor. Regardless, it is a great place to be.
I’m challenging you to manufacture some focused intensity – over the next 30 days. Each weekday over the next 30 days, I’m going to publish a blog post. Understandably, these posts are going to be a little shorter than what I normally post. However, they will be packed full of tactics and best practices you can instantly apply to your business.
I’ve written about this before, but I get asked about my recommendation on CRMs more than anything.
And rightfully so. A great Customer Relationship Management application is a crucial part of the technology backbone of any business – especially commercial real estate.
I’m really excited to announce my first webinar with ClientLook this Wednesday, August 19 at 3pm Eastern.
Claim My Seat for the Webinar!
You want to be on this webinar if:
- You are frustrated with complex CRMs that suck your time instead of save your time.
- You want all your data with you at all times so you can maximize your productivity on the move.
- Or in other words…never feel chained to your desk again!
- You waste too much time with data entry – ClientLook has a brilliant solution for this.
- You spend too much time reporting deal activity to your clients and owners.
- You want a CRM that will not only help you find and track, but will actually help you win business.
- …and so much more!
John Dawson, VP of Sales for ClientLook, is going to join me on the webinar to give a product demonstration. If you have ever wondered what ClientLook looks like behind the curtain, or what it can do, this is your opportunity.
I’ve also negotiated a special deal with ClientLook that you can only take advantage of on the webinar.
So I hope you’ll join me on Wednesday at 3pm Eastern. You will be glad you did as ClientLook is everything you need in a CRM, and nothing you don’t.
Claim My Seat for the Webinar!
I have poison ivy. Both arms. My stomach. And my ear. I kid you not. I have poison ivy on my ear lobe.
The reason? I love my wife.
Earlier this week, she asked me if I would help her trim the landscaping in our back yard. Evidently – there is poison ivy back there.
When I do yard work, I binge-listen to podcasts. This week, I was listening to Michael Hyatt’s podcast – What if the Barrier’s Were Only in Your Head? It got me thinking about the things we believe in our minds.
Some of those beliefs are rooted in truth. Some are not. What we believe is true about ourselves has a tremendous impact on our performance. Our mindsets are rooted in truth, or they are rooted in a lie.
Commercial real estate is changing. The internet has helped in leveling the playing field. Best practices are now easily shared – within companies and without. It is now harder than ever to differentiate yourself from your competition.
This month’s webinar with my friend Kris Krisco of Buildout.com
is all about how your marketing should actually win you listings. You can register for the webinar – at 3pm Eastern on August 5th – by clicking here
by ShadeON via iStock.com
The marketing of your listings is for the purpose of finding the most potential buyers. The more buyers equates to more offers. More offers, if the listing is priced right, can generate a quasi-auction environment. So not only do you find a buyer, but the best buyer – and, get the most out of that buyer.
But you can also use your marketing to win listings.
I’ve recently had a number of my New to the Business (N2B) coaching clients ask me for prospecting scripts. They are new clients, and they are new to commercial real estate (CRE). Had they been with me for a while, they would have known not to ask. I want to share with you why in this post.
But first, a story…
Image from shironosov via iStockPhoto.com
I’m in my 15th year of marriage. I love my wife more today than I ever have. She is incredible, and I count myself one of the most blessed men on the planet.
But…we still deal with conflict. She is not married to a perfect man. And despite her awesomeness, she isn’t perfect either.
Recently, we were dealing with some conflict in our marriage that had gone on for a number of days. My wife was frustrated with me. I was frustrated with the situation. Life in the Barron household was not smooth or enjoyable…at all.