Real talk: hopefully it isn’t news to you that real estate agents in general don’t have the best reputation. There’s a lot of reasons for this.
Perhaps someone experienced a horror story with an agent in the past, or maybe they just don’t like having a “middle-man” in control of something so HUGE and personal like their current or future home.
There are a few reasons in particular that people generally don’t like agents, but luckily, YOU can fix it.
Read the tips below and think about your own real estate business and marketing. Dig deep, because it can be hard to be honest with ourselves.
Reason #1: People don’t like feeling only like a “sale”
I’m putting this one at the top for a reason—it’s important that agents learn empathy and how to genuinely show it if they want consistently positive interactions with potential clients.
Real estate transactions are all about building and maintaining relationships. when you’re working with a new potential client, make sure you START the relationship with 2 things right off the bat:
- Asking questions
- Providing value
If you front-load the value and provide solutions to what they need, not only will you be connecting with the client on a meaningful level, but you’ll also help exude more trust because they’ll *know* you’re truly interested in solving problems.
Here’s what that could look like:
First of all, if you do any kind of advertising, how can you provide value? I realize this could be more difficult with say a billboard or magazine ad, but generally, instead of directing someone to your website or to contact you, invite them to contact you in exchange for something.
Some examples: a book on how to get the most money for their house, your top renovation ideas for home buyers, your 5-step DIY listing strategy, etc. The goal is to give them something so valuable that they’re intrigued, and gain confidence in your ability to create solutions.
Secondly, always start by asking questions instead of listing off your credentials and accomplishments. Before you find out if they’re a good fit for you, find out if you’re a good fit for them.
Reason #2: People don’t like feeling “out of the loop”
The second reason a lot of people don’t have happy-good-feelings about real estate agents is that they *hate* feeling out of the loop and out of control.
Part of an agent’s responsibility involves communicating between parties, setting up showings, ad negotiating.
So…if a client wants to see a house and its pending or sold before they can get to it, or if they miss out on a deal because their offer wasn’t presented soon enough, or the offers are coming in below what they want for their house…
They’ll blame you.
And that’s why its critical that as an agent, you focus on education and very open communication. Most people don’t know what goes into being an agent. They don’t understand the legalities, need for detail oriented, and risks if everything isn’t done properly.
So, part of your job is to educate buyers and sellers regarding everything involved in the process and help set clear expectations. If its a competitive market and you know they’re going to hear “no” a few times to something they really wanted, prepare them for that and let them know you’ll be with them every step of the way.
Most people aren’t very financially literate either—so help them understand the lending process and make sure they get approved for financing so that they’ll be connected with a lender who can educate them regarding the fees and true cost of selling or buying.
Reason #3: People don’t want to have to pay a commission
This next reason stems back to the previous one in regards to transparency and education.
People don’t like that they have to pay you a commission. A home is a very personal thing, and sellers feel pride in the fact that they purchased and cared for their home. They also don’t understand what goes into selling a house.
Your job is to educate them through kindness and empathy. Help them understand that there are many intricacies when selling a house.
By working with you, not only do they get the benefit of working with someone familiar with the market, they also get the benefit of the support of your broker for any questions they have. They’ll have a partner throughout the whole process that enables them to focus on what they should be focusing on: getting ready to buy or sell the house!
I hope these 3 reasons listed resonate with you and give you a clear idea on how you can improve not only your marketing, but the way you work with people.
As real estate agents, you are your brand. So, its easy to get lost in self-promotion without considering how to solve problems for buyers and sellers.
The bottom line is this: think about the problem behind the problem your clients are facing.
For example: the problem is that your seller needs to sell a house. But the problem behind the problem is that they need to sell it during a slow time of year and are afraid they won’t get the best price for the house.
In this case, your job is to educate them on getting a house ready for a quick sale. Staging, pricing, marketing, etc.
By starting with the education, instead of self promotion, you position yourself as a trusted expert instead of someone just looking for a sale.