Saturday, February 1, 2014

SEAHAWKS WIN! and 7 simple ways to make more #CRE deals!

Let's face it, we ALL could benefit from a few more CRE deals this year...especially with the market tightening in some areas of the country and with values increasing. With that point in mind, making more deals, just what do we need to do? This post will outline several simple...not easy...ideas to help you make more commercial real estate deals in 2014.

As a disclaimer, I provide Location Advice to owners and occupants of industrial buildings in southern California...AKA...I lease and sell commercial real estate for a living and have since 1984.

Learn to "work out loud": My wife, Carla, coined this phrase and it speaks volumes! Working out loud is akin to doing things once so that you can access the work in the future. Here is what I mean. There are a multitude of tasks that we repeat daily as CRE practitioners...tours, proposals, processes for repping occupants, previewing buildings, etc. If you preview a building and video tape a "virtual tour" while previewing, you have just "worked out loud"! You now have a tangible record of the preview that can be shared with clients, prospects, other brokers, etc. If you create a blog, with your occupant rep process or your vacant building marketing process, these links can be sent to owners, occupants, and fellow brokers...thus saving you time in re-creating this EVERY time you get a request for proposal or a request for information.

Expand your network: Let's get really strategic here. What is the best referral source of new biz for you? The answer could be what has your best referral source been? Is it bankers, lawyers, wealth advisors, material handling reps, commercial insurance brokers, CPAs, other brokers? You should be able to quickly elaborate on this referral source. Whatever the answer is, my suggestion is that you multiply your outreach to the referral sources that you identified...simple, huh? If you received three referrals from CPAs, ask your existing clients if they can provide an introduction to their CPA. This is an easy ask. Plus, your client's CPA and you have something in common...your client!

Fire a client or two: Tough to do...but SO necessary! As vibrant as our markets are these days, we cannot afford to waste any time with unrealistic, unreasonable, unqualified, or unappreciative clients...period! So here is a suggestion. Rather than forever discontinuing a bad relationship, simply refer this client to someone else in your office and retain a referral position. I recently did this, the other broker in my office was appreciative, and I just received  referral fee for the firing.

Get to know your competition: Who are the real deal makers? How well do you know them? Have you ever invited them to lunch, coffee, breakfast, a networking event, golf, etc? Some might call this sleeping with the enemy, but my experience is that the more you are connected with the competition, the better. These are the people that are making the markets and just may provide you with a new means of doing deals, a new outlook, or a great referral source...see paragraph above.

Establish a means to contact past clients: We all understand this, but so few of us do a really good job of it. Here's an suggestion that has worked for me: Create three lists...one of folks you have done deals within the past, one for referral partners (network), and one for folks you would like to do business with (prospects). I would suggest limiting the lists to a maximum of 100 names for each list. Each month of the year, alternate contact with one of the three lists...thus each will be contacted four times a year. Don't just call them...but don't avoid calling them. I would suggest a different method each month. One month could be a lumpy mailer, the next could be a small gift, the following a call, the next a blog post, the following a short video, the following some market info on avails and comps...you get the idea. Your goal is to establish several touch points throughout the year so that you stay top of mind.

Use social media: If you are reading this, then you are a consumer of social media content. If you forward this post to a client or colleague...you are my best friend...but also, you are a curator of social media content. If this post inspires you to shoot a video, create a blog, or tweet a status, CONGRATULATIONS! You are now a social media content creator. Here is my recommendation to you. Move up the ladder. If you consume, make it your goal to curate. If you curate, try creating your own content...it is that simple...and before you know it, you will discover great ways to incorporate social media marketing into your CRE practice...and create more engagement!

Listen more than you speak: So true in face-to-face networking, social media marketing, and life in general. No one enjoys the company of anyone who is one sided...talks too much! Actively, and with genuine interest, listen to the people you encounter...you'll be amazed how much you will learn!

Best of luck in 2014 using these simple suggestions!

Image courtesy of www.dalediaz.com