Do you find that the mere thought of prospecting for new clients makes everything else on your calendar seem incredibly important?
Prospecting is one of the most important tasks that every real estate agent must spend time on, but when it comes down to actually picking up the phone to cold-call prospects, the phone invariably feels infinitely heavier.
In an article by Dr. Maya Bailey, she shares common misconceptions and self-limiting beliefs that often plague real estate agents. She describes them as the difference between just getting by and making a very comfortable living.
Dr. Bailey’s common misconceptions include:
- “I won’t know what to say”
- “I don’t have time to prospect”
- “I’ll be seen as a telemarketer”
Dr. Bailey’s self-limiting beliefs are:
- “If I prospect, I will be bothering people”
- “If I prospect, I will be judged and rejected”
- “If I prospect, I will be seen as a pushy salesperson”
After reading that list, is it any wonder we have such a hard time picking up the phone and prospecting?
Dr. Bailey goes on to say that we have been conditioned from birth to leave people alone; the exact opposite of prospecting. We learned things like “don’t talk to strangers, it’s not OK to ask for what you want, and if you call people, you’re bothering them.”
What Every Agent Needs to Know About Prospecting
1. Banish Self-Limiting Beliefs
Many real estate agents I speak to are carrying the belief that if they call, they are bothering that person. Dr. Bailey reports about an agent who was able to fight through this belief, and is now making $35,000 a month working 5 hours a day. How did they do it?
This agent beat those limiting beliefs by training himself to believe that he had a valuable service to offer and one that people would be eager to hear about.
Remember, you are not a telemarketer trying to schlep a product. You are a real estate professional offering a valuable service along with the knowledge and know-how you have amassed over your career.
Understanding and believing in your value can make any average agent into a market-leading powerhouse.
2. Set Yourself Up for Success
An underutilized strategy that boosts confidence and banishes common misconceptions is call scripting. I know that the benefits of scripting have been widely discussed, but have you actually taken the next step and created scripts? And I don’t mean one script for everyone you call. I’m talking about a different script for each type of client that you will be calling.
Think about your contacts and how they are categorized within your contact management system. Each of those categories should have a unique script. For instance, if you are calling on empty-nesters, make sure your script appeals to their specific needs and wants. Downsizing, retiring and traveling should be included as key talking points.
Now before you begin a rant about the robotic nature of scripting, let me remind you that a script is just a crutch that allows you to pick up the phone and express your thoughts in a warm and inviting way. Your goal is to make prospects feel comfortable and relaxed rather than off put and irritated at the time you are wasting.
3. Overcoming the Objection Blues
Each of us has experienced rejection in one form or another and it is never fun. But here’s the real secret and it’s something agents spend years learning.
There is no such thing as rejection when it comes to prospecting.
That’s right! Stop looking at it as rejection and instead view those calls as a non-match. What do I mean by this? Whether the prospect does not need your services at the moment or there’s no synergy between your personalities, it’s simply a non-match leaving you free to move on with your prospecting.
Dr. Maya Bailey’s sums it up beautifully.
“Change your focus to one of being of service to people. We all have a need to contribute. You have valuable skills and expertise and you can make a valuable contribution to people’s lives. Whenever you set out to prospect, remember the skills you offer and how valuable they are in helping people with their real estate needs. Visualize people being happy to hear from you!”