Yes, you read that right, we’re now living and working in the ‘Relationship Era’ where selling is all about connecting. Nobody (including ourselves) enjoys the hard-sell or the generic marketing approach taken by some firms. It’s proven that once you have connected with someone you can better understand their needs, establish trust and ultimately work with them to find their real estate solution.
Fact 1: casual conversations can eventually lead to business
Fact 2: opportunities exist everywhere to start a real estate conversation
With these two facts in mind, here are just a few ideas to get you thinking about how to better connect with people – you just never know where an unexpected listing might come from.
Share a Part of Yourself
Small talk is often dull so why not use the opportunity to truly engage with someone by sharing a part of yourself and see where the conversation goes? Here’s an example.
Bob: How are you?
Jane: I’m really good thanks. I spent the whole weekend building a pergola.
Bob: Wow! That’s amazing, I actually built one myself a while back, we use ours a lot and it’s great when friends come around.
Jane: I just sold a property that had one and I thought it was a great use of their backyard and everyone that came through the open home really liked it too.
Bob: I didn’t know you sell real estate. Which company are you with?
Ask Better Questions
People are full of stories so try fishing for one by asking open-ended questions which are easy to answer. Here are some simple examples so you get the gist of how to deepen your connection with someone.
- What’s the strangest thing about where you grew up?
- What’s the most interesting thing that happened to you today?
- How’d you end up in your line of work?
- If you weren’t doing this, what would you rather be doing?
- Who do you think is the most fascinating person in the room?
Don’t be a Parrot
Parroting in conversation is simply repeating another version of what the other person has just said. It may demonstrate that you are listening but be aware that too much of it doesn’t add anything to the conversation and can often leave the conversation at a stalemate – and the end of a potential connection.
Find Common Ground
From walking the dog, going to the gym, school pick-ups, BBQs or out and about in your local community these encounters, where the common ground has already been established, make it easy to connect with potential customers.
Take advantage of technology and social media. Looking at LinkedIn profiles might reveal some similarities in background, education, employers and contacts. Facebook profiles can reveal insights to their social background, family, values and interests.
In real estate you are probably aware of new developments in your area, what’s for sale and the current market conditions, so do your homework and have some facts on hand to boost your credibility. Aim to become the go-to person for everything real estate in your area and the conversation will take off from there.
And lastly; be real, be reliable and be patient.