In last month's article, I gave you seven practical tips for conducting highly successful Realtor meetings. However, meetings in and of themselves won't buy you a coffee at Starbucks. The key to turning meetings into money is the close. In other words, the trajectory of every contact, including your face-to-face meetings, should ultimately culminate in a decision to partner or not to partner. Here's how you do it...
STEP 6 – Get a Commitment
Obviously, you're not just meeting with Realtors for the fun of it. What a sad life that would be. Your goal is to get the right commitment from the right Realtor. After all, who wants to be married to a nightmare Realtor? One of my favorite sayings is, "It's better to be alone than to wish you were." So, during this initial courting phase, your job is to weed out the weenies and keep the keenies. Or put another way, sift out the duds and keep the studs. You want to partner with someone who is an asset, not a liability. With that said, here are...
Four Tips for Getting the Right Commitment from the Right Realtor:
Tip 1: Speak to their hot buttons. In last month's article, I talked about the importance of using a "Needs Assessment" during your initial meeting in order to identify your Realtors' pain-points, challenges and goals. By using that approach, you're going to find out a lot about your Realtors' hot buttons -- what they really care about. Once you have that information, you can line up a second meeting, which I call the "Show 'n' Tell" meeting. This is where you can present effective solutions to their biggest problems. Do this and they'll be hot for what you got!
Tip 2: Use scarcity. Studies show that people tend to want things more when they're in short supply. No one wants Tickle Me Elmo unless it's on backorder. Strange, but true. Now, here's how you can harness that law of nature to work in your favor: limit the number of Realtors you work with. Yes, really!
Keep in mind that if you're averaging $2,100 per transaction, all you need is four solid Realtors to send you one measly referral per month to add an extra six figures to your bottom line. The point is, it's more about quality than quantity. It's better to go narrow, deep and rich with just a few Realtors than it is to go wide, shallow and skimpy with a lot. That's why you want to limit the number of Realtors you work with to a select few. If you position yourself properly, the way I teach you, Realtors will start to see you in a totally different light. In fact, they'll even consider it a special privilege just to have the chance to work with you. How's that for a breath of fresh air!
In this case, there are two primary ways to create scarcity. The first is to offer exclusive, high-level partnership benefits that are only available to one Realtor per market area. For example, you would only allow one Realtor per municipality, county, jurisdiction, etc. The second way to do it is to simply limit the number of partners you will work with at any given time. For example, you could say, "I'm only allowing six Realtors at the 'VIP Partnership' level. Once those six VIP spots are taken, I'm not accepting any more at that level. It's going to be first-come, first-served based on those who qualify. And once I hit my six VIP partners, I'm closing the doors."
As you can see, both of the above strategies are strongly contingent upon your ability to provide extraordinary, unique value no one else is offering. If you're just another replaceable commodity hawking "great rates" and "great service," it won't take long for their B.S. detectors to sound the alarm and you'll be laughed right out the door! To make this work, you've got to position yourself as an irreplaceable, indispensible asset on their team. Period. Anything less is doomed to failure.
One of the unique advantages of using the area-exclusive strategy is that when it comes to referring clients to your Realtors, they will each get exclusive rights to your referrals based on their market area. So if the client resides in North Vancouver, they will be referred to the North Vancouver Realtor. This keeps things clean and simple.
Tip 3: Get Them to Sell Themselves. As a cautionary note, this takes some guts. Again, you can't assert this kind of posture unless you're the "only show in town." Once that prerequisite is fulfilled, it becomes a lot easier to do what I'm about to recommend with a straight face.
So, how exactly do you get your Realtors to "sell themselves"? Well, it's actually quite simple. Just say something like, "Ralph, due to time constraints I can only offer this VIP partnership to six qualifying Realtors. What would you say are the TOP three reasons why I should consider choosing you to be one of my six?" Then just shut up, listen and take notes. Now all of a sudden, instead of you trying to sell yourself to them, they're trying to sell themselves to you. What a world of difference!
Tip 4: Start Small. Don't ask for marriage on the first date. Start small with an easy yes. Ask your Realtor for one listing that you can help promote. You might say something like, "If I can't prove to you without a shadow of a doubt that my marketing systems can help you sell your listing faster and for top dollar, I won't bother you with this ever again. Fair enough?" Nine times out of ten they'll oblige. And once they see the improved results, they'll naturally want to hand over ALL their listings!
Now, perhaps you're wondering why the heck you should be helping your Realtors market their listings anyhow. I mean, isn't that the Realtors' job? Well, yes. But what if you're able to turn your Realtors' listings into a flood of red-hot mortgage leads? What if you could get your Realtors to pay for your lead generation? That's exactly what I'll be sharing with you in next month's article. In the meantime, just trust the system. It works!
The VIP Partnership Agreement
Remember, the "VIP Partnership" should only be presented to top-notch Realtors who meet your specific criteria (hopefully more than just having a pulse and fogging a mirror). This exclusive opportunity should be reserved for those special "gems" you respect and admire -- the kind of people worthy of your time, energy and money.
Once you have someone who meets the above criteria, preferably at the end of your "Show 'n' Tell" meeting, you can present the VIP Partnership Agreement. This is a document that delineates what exactly each party in the partnership would be bringing to the table. It's not a legally binding contract; it's just a simple agreement of understanding that outlines the key benefits of the partnership.
After you walk through the entire VIP Partnership Agreement and you can tell they understand how it works, the next logical step is to ask, “Would you like to be considered as a candidate to claim one of the last remaining VIP Partnership spots?" If they say "yes" then you follow up with the question I gave you earlier: "What are the top three reasons why I should consider you over all my other options?" That's how you get them to sell themselves.
Now, the only thing left to do at this point is to close the deal. You can say something like, "You know what? I have a good feeling about you. How soon would you like to get started?" It's as simple as that! Then you just pull out the pen, sign the agreement and you're good to go.
So there you have it. I've just given you a step-by-step game plan for taking Realtors who don't know you from a hole in the wall, and turning them into highly committed, loyal, high-level referral partners. In next month's article, I'll teach you some of my best strategies for helping your Realtors sell their listings FAST and for top dollar, and most importantly, generate a steady stream of motivated buyer leads for you. Stay tuned… ¨
Doren Aldana is considered by many to be the nation's leading Mortgage Marketing Coach. Since 2005, he has been dedicated to helping mortgage professionals attract more clients with less effort, regardless of market conditions.
For a free online workshop on "How to Turn Your Realtors' Listings into a Flood of Red-Hot Mortgage Leads," visit: www.UltimateRealtorMarketingSystem.com