We caught up with estate agency trainer Tony Morris last week for a kerfuffle kampus training session to get some tips on how to thrive after lockdown. Tony shared with us 7 strategies that negotiators and valuers all over Europe are doing right now.
Ultimately there are two things that all agents should be focusing on now and everything they do should be broken down into these two categories:
1) Income-generating – what is earning your business income
2) Opportunity generating – what is creating opportunities that should lead to income
If you can focus on these two priorities, you will thrive now and out of lockdown.
The message here is simple – if you don’t have a goal, you can’t score. Set three achievable goals every day to keep you focused and to make you feel like you’ve had a good day when you complete those goals – there’s nothing worse than finishing a day and feeling like you haven’t really achieved anything. These goals can be really simple – here’s an example:
1) Call one existing vendor to see how they are
2) Call one past client to see how they are
3) Call one of your landlords to ask them about when they last reviewed their buy-to-let mortgages
Dress for work
Tony isn’t suggesting you put a suit and tie on but wear something that different to what you wear during your downtime. Dress how you want to feel so that you can be the best version of yourself. So basically, get up and get dressed – don’t wear your pyjamas to work in. Subconsciously this will have a big effect on your productivity.
If you don’t have one start working on one. If you do have one, it’s a good time to review and update it. Tony has a single page business plan that he’d be happy to share with you – get in touch to request a copy.
Knowledge bible for your business
Think of this scenario – a guy calls you who is thinking about selling and he asks you what the market has been doing over the last 6-12 months and what you expect to happen over the coming months. Are you confident that you and every single one of your team could answer that question, and give the same answer? If no, you need a knowledge bible. Include in it market insights about what has been going on in your area such as average rental prices and list out local amenities such schools, sports clubs etc. You could have a weekly quiz with your team based on these questions. You should also keep a log of frequently asked questions from customers, or just good or challenging questions you have been asked and note down a good answer in your knowledge bible so that you are always prepared and confident.
Instead of thinking about your USPs (Unique Selling Points) thinks about your UCBs (Unique Client Benefits) - what are they gaining from you that really make you stand out from your competition? Once you have decided on these things, when a client gets in touch to book a valuation, send them an email with a list of suggested questions they should ask their agent on a valuation. You then know that if they use these questions you will be asked them on the valuation so you will be prepared and ready, but they will also ask your competition those questions too. The questions should be designed to highlight your strengths and your competitions’ weaknesses. For example if you are a multi-branch agency where all of your branches are linked and you’re up against smaller agencies, one of your questions could be ‘how many negotiators will be helping to sell my property?’ This helps to justify your fee structure too.
Search for Google Alerts on Google. To set up your alerts it will ask for your email address and for the key word you would like to be alerted about. You will know what your landlords do for a living, so set up alerts on their businesses so that you can keep up-to-date with their news and updates. This will allow you to do things like send them a branded congratulations card if they win an award, or a bottle of champagne if they’re celebrating a birthday or a bouquet of flowers if they open a new branch. It shows you’re in the know and it gives you some really nice touch points with them that they’ll remember. This all contributes to them remaining loyal to you.
Success library and content
Your content needs to appeal to lots of audiences so you should be using different media to create your content. Video is massive right now. Property Video Solutions and Chris Watkin are helping agents create some great content. Right now, you could be creating a video on each of the streets in your local area that you could film yourself on your camera phone or with basic kit. Create a library of success stories in your agency on why sellers, buyers, landlords and tenants have used you and how you helped them. Think of it like this – when your customers tell everyone how good you are it is proof of you being a good agent. Join the Estate Agent Video Group on Facebook to connect with these guys and to get regular great video content tips.
Branded ‘I am moving’ cards
When a buyer or sellers is moving house, give them 50 ‘I am moving’ cards for them to send out, and a digital version too. This will have their new address on it and ticks off a quick box for them by helping them quickly share their new address. It works for tenants too – even if you just do a digital version for tenants. This gets your brand out there via an independent source to a load of people who might move house in your area one day too!
If you’d like to arrange some training sessions for you and your team with Tony get in touch – he works with lots of great agents across the country including Manning Stainton.