In an expansion market buyers have to act; every three months they wait for properties to rapidly increase in price, in a contractionary market, every three months a seller remains their sale price declines. In a slow-growth market, neither the buyer or the seller are compelled to act financially.
To win, you have to be an agent for all markets. The secrets to pipeline progression lay in a simple three-part formula. The client has to have a problem, a timeline and a destination.
There are 11 different problem types (Deceased estate, divorce, nursing home, job relocation, bankruptcy, investor, developer, tree/sea change, downsizing (kids have moved out), aspirational and growing family. 'What's the reason for the move?' If the client blocks with a vague answer, try one more time with 'why's that?'. If you know the problem type, then you know what to do next. Each one brings with it a specific set of jobs to be done.
A Deceased estate customer has the following problems:
Have they been an executor before?
Are there any beneficiaries?
Does anyone in the family wish to buy the home?
Is their sentimental value?
How do they determine the value of the assent? Is it based on market price or what the beneficiaries each need to be motivated to sell?
Does everyone get along?
Has probate been granted?
Does the family live locally or do they need someone to look after the home during the sales process?
Never nominate a timeline, test the client first. 'When did you need to do something by? Did you need to be in before or after Christmas?' This forces the client to commit. The problem type will drive the timeline - i.e. job renovations are very specific, whereas downsizing is financially motivated to maximise the value of the asset base.
People need clarity on what vision is, on what success looks like, on the problem solved. 'What locations are you considering? How much would you like to spend?'. When a buyer walks through an open and says 'this isn't it, but when I see it I'll know', what they are saying is they are unclear on their vision. Book some private appointments and show them three homes. That's a buyer who's unhappy and want's to be sold.
To progress your pipeline review your Hitlist, write out their problem, timeline and destination. What's been sold? What's been listed? What's in the media? Is there anything you should be talking to them about that would motivate them to transact sooner?
To drive buyer urgency, you need a very specific set of criteria to move buyers to your buyer Hitlist. I look for triggers that move the client and shows genuine motivation. If they've booked a private appointment, coming back for a second appointment, made an offer, registered to bid, attended an auction, bid at auction, needs to buy by a certain date, or has already sold, then they make it to my buyer Hitlist.
Understanding buyer urgency changes how you negotiate. We call it negotiation leverage, the more you know about why the clients buying, the more you can apply your negotiation tools.
The digital world is also rapidly changing the way agents play the game. The goal is to subscribe buyers to receive your buyer alerts; then we can measure if they open emails, watch videos, forward properties to friends, research recent sales or competing homes. Digital amplification tools then allow you to generate automated call lists around who's the most likely to move into an 'offline world' transaction.
Those that master markets drive their offline activities like market appraisals, buyer appointments and listing appointments. Combine that with the right online systems, and you'll have an incredible pipeline that produces year after year.
The best thing you can do to drive your business is to schedule a 20-minute meeting each week where you review both your buyer and seller hitlists. Remember, if you don't know them, then they don't know you. The easiest way to progress a client is to meet them face to face.
And that's the critical skill. The ability to qualify, to know what to do next, and how to approach each customer by driving their urgency.