The Art of Turning a Conversation into a Listing! Phil Herman is “Licensed to Sell!”

Conversational Hooks that turn Strangers into Prospects.

Over the years, we’ve preached the importance of changing from a “sales mentality” to a “marketing mentality.” A sales mindset is basically chasing prospects who are ready to sell now, while a marketing mindset is all about setting up a system where you brand yourself and work that brand to create a steady flow of business coming your way. A marketing mindset puts you in the minds of consumers long BEFORE they need to sell. (I can’t tell you how many times clients have told me that they go to take a listing and the homeowner says, “we always knew we were going to use you when we were ready to sell, and now we are!” That is the type of result you’ll see by moving to a marketing mentality.)

However, like many things in life, it’s easy to say, but hard to do. Building a brand that generates a steady flow of business takes time, money and effort.  That is why you also need great sales skills.  Today you are going to have conversations with a number of people.  What is your strategy to turn those conversations into listings?

Sales Skills and Marketing Programs Must Work Together

In the 35 plus years, I have been working with agents helping them build marketing driven real estate businesses I tell them they need to not only work on their long term marketing but they need to also work on their one on one sales skills.   A strategic branding campaign and marketing plan that is correctly implemented is designed to be a semi-automated way to create a steady flow of clients coming your way. It allows you to create a flow of leads so that you are not spending so much energy chasing and prospecting for leads; they are coming to you. But it takes time and money to establish an effective brand. That why you also need to hone your sales skills so that every opportunity that comes your way can be turned into a transaction.

Marketing & Prospecting

A perfect example is Dayton, OH agent, Phil Herman.  He has spent over 25 years working with us at MegaAgentDesgin.com to build his brand and create optimum name recognition. Many years ago, he went through that “sweat equity” phase of building the branding and marketing, just like many agents have to. Over time, he has built his brand into a lead generating machine. He now spends more money on his marketing and advertising budget than the vast majority of agents earn in commissions North America (remember the adage, it takes money to make money!). That being said, one of the things that strikes me about Phil is that even though he has this big marketing machine working for him, and brings him a steady flow of leads, he is still hungry and looks for every opportunity to prospect. He makes follow up calls every day that his team could easily make. But he wants to stay in touch with what people are saying.  This week, he shared with me that he had 15 listing appointments on his calendar for this week and I have a feeling he will get them all.

A Superstar at Both

Phil completes on average about 450 transactions a year and has been doing that production for many years. What has made Phil’s rise so remarkable is that he is both a consummate marketer and a consummate salesperson. It’s a powerful combination.

One Great Example

An example of this “consummate salesman” is his commitment to making calls every day, even when he has clients calling him every day asking Phill to list their home. Another example is Phil’s ability to turn ordinary daily encounters with people into business. Here is an example: Phil has a life and business philosophy built around the Japanese mindset of “Kaizen.” That is the philosophy of “constant improvement” through constant learning. He actually got a personalized license plate with this word. Phil shares with me that people constantly see his plates and then ask him “what does that mean?” He quickly explains the philosophy, then says striving to live “Kaizen” has changed my life for the better in every way and helped me become become a better person and businessman, if you give me your email address I would be happy to send you an amazing article about “Kaizen”, I know you will get great value from it.

Guess what?  He gets almost everyone’s contact information. Once he has collected the person’s contact information he hands them a copy of his personal brochure and says here’s a little brochure about who I am you will be able to see how “Kaizen” has made a huge difference in my life. I will email you the article, I would love your feedback on it.  Without fail, Phil sends out an email with the article with a request for feedback. He does not mention real estate he just provides valuable information.  Then over time, he follows up consistently with two marketing touches a month forever.

Conversation=Listing

For instance, Phil was filling his car at a gas station. A man approached him and asked about his license plate. Phil explained the philosophy and told the man that it’s an important part of how he approaches daily life. Phil also explained that the philosophy is exactly what Phil and his business team embrace. When Phill offered to email the man an article he gladly “took the bait” and gave Phil his name and email information. That’s how Phil turns conversations into prospects.  It turned out that four months letter the man decided to sell his home and Phil got the listing — from a casual conversation at a gas pump!  A simple conversation started the ball rolling; great sales skills turned the conversation into a lead. Then Phil’s follow-up great marketing follow up plan starting by giving the person a copy of his brochure and emailing them the  “Kaizen” article and sending out his professional and useful bi-weekly follow-up materials turned the lead into a listing.  Phil says many people have told him they were so impressed that as successful as he is that he followed up. They tell him that when they read his brochure, they felt like they have a relationship with Phil and knew they would enjoy working with him.  Phil calls the people his new friends farm.  Together great sales skills and great marketing are a very powerful force.

In fact, that is one of the most effective ways to do this is to have something of great value that you can offer to send to anyone you talk to.  Your offer should not be real estate related. If should be something that will truly help people live a better life.  The goodwill and relationship you build will generate more business than talking about real estate.

MARKETING TIP:

When you do have a face-to-face encounter, (whether or not you were able to turn the conversation to a lead) be sure to pass out your personal prospecting brochure as you disengage from the conversation. If you made a favorable impression, your brochure will solidify your relationship in the mind of this prospect! In fact, we have always coached our clients to carry a stack of personal brochures and hand them out instead of business cards. It’s an essential and effective part of a successful marketing campaign. In fact, it’s an integral factor in my E-Book, “How To Generate 10 Transactions in 90 Days with Your Personal Prospecting Brochure.”

The point I am trying to make in this article is that it is important to switch from a sales mentality to a marketing mentality to grow your business and take control of your time. It helps you get off the “hamster wheel” of chasing deals and looking for the next hot prospect. However, as Phil has shown, even though you have established a successful marketing campaign and system, you should never stop your daily prospecting, always be ready for the face to face encounter, and have an interesting conversational hook that will lead to collecting that person’s contact information.  Don’t force it. It takes practice. You may want to explore several scenarios you might encounter, and craft some ideas how to turn the conversation gently and naturally so they can send them something of value. Once you have this down, you will find you enjoy prospecting in social settings.

I would love your feedback on what your conversational hook is and what you offer to send people, so they are happy to give you their contact information. Please post comments below.

Greg Herder
CEO MegaAgent.com

PS:

If you Want A free Copy of my e-book “How To Generate 10 Transactions in 90 Days with Your Personal Prospecting Brochure.” Click Here.  If you want to see samples of personal brochures go to PersonalBrochures.com