It is no secret that the commercial property market is a challenge at the moment for real estate agents as property owners struggle with high vacancy levels and unsold listings. This then says that we need to be proactive and productive when it comes to building relationships and opportunities for our clients. The referral process should be a formal part of your marketing strategy and used in your real estate business.
So many referrals can come from people that you know or have had something to do with as a specialist commercial agent. They people to provide you with leads would normally be:
- Previous property owners that you have acted for in the sale of a property
- Property Investors and portfolio owners that own other property in and about the local area
- Previous landlord clients that you have supported in property leasing and or property management
- The maintenance contractors that look after your managed properties for the landlord clients within your agency
- Tenants that you have successfully placed into other commercial or retail properties locally
- Tenants in your managed properties will always know a lot about the local business activity and other businesses nearby
- Engineers, architects, solicitors, and accountants, that have something to do with property activity in the local area
- Local councilors or members of the municipal level of government
- Previous people that have enquired about other listings that were on your books for sale or for lease
This list can be expanded given your local property precinct. Who do you know that can be a source of leads?
Property developers that you know and have served with regard to other transactions locally will be prepared to share information with you providing you have established a good foundation of trust with them.
When you have listed a property locally for sale or lease, the other businesses nearby will be a significant source of local market intelligence and potential referral. The listing on your books gives you an advantage to network and a reason to talk to all adjacent property owners and occupiers. Ask them about the local property market any changes that they are aware of.
Property planning consultants that have been involved with property changes or challenges in some of your listings are another source of opportunity. These people understand the changes that are active in the local area and they can give you significant leads.
The local planning committee or planning authority is constantly dealing with property changes and property zoning issues. Keep close to the activities of the planning committee to check on any pending approvals or current issues under discussion. Normally there are publicly available minutes from the Planning Committee of current matters of consideration.
So this is a significant group of people to network and seek referrals from. They will all know other people that have links to property activity. The referral opportunity that exists within this list is significant. To tap into this opportunity is just a matter of asking the right questions wherever and whenever possible.
Business conversions from a referral are much higher in success than that which you get in a cold call contact. Referral opportunity is based on relationships and those relationships can help you open doors with new people. To convert more referral business, you simply need the mindset and the ability to ask the right questions in every meeting.