When Buyers Fall Through the Cracks
Prevent Losing Contact with a Buyer by asking for a Virtual Appointment
I am not perfect! There I said it! It said it more for me than for you. In any case, my name is Angie Perez of Agent Know How. I’ve been in the real estate sales business as a real estate agent for 6 1/2 years and training/mentoring other agents since 2007. I have come to terms with a couple of things in my business. Being a Buyer’s agent is damn hard work, more work (imho) than being a listing agent. And, my biggest challenge as a lead generating buyer’s agent is appropriate follow-up.
This is the first installment of the Agent Know How Training Minute. This week’s topic is: how to get face to face remotely. I am convinced that with our hectic lives and schedules, one of the primary reasons buyers fall through the cracks is we close immediately for the face to face appointment when a remote (virtual) meeting might be a precursor to creating that warm and fuzzy feeling, a feeling that eventually leads to the buyer giving us their loyalty and hiring us as their real estate agent of choice!
So how exactly do you get face to face remotely and what do you do on that first virtual appointment?
- Face Time: If you are an iphone with face time capabilities and the buyer has one as well, set up that first appointment (the buyer’s consultation) via face time. Iphone users (and I am purposefully generalizing here) are cell phone enthusiasts, which is to say, they may in fact be open minded to set up a face time appointment with you. According to a study report collected by MobileThinking called the 2011 Global Mobile Statistics Report, US consumers use their mobile devices for banking, travel, shopping, local info, news, video, sports and blogs and prefer apps for games, social media, maps and music. This is good. It means iphone users would enjoy engagement using their smart phone device. Therefore, ask for a virtual mobile appointment and you might just get it assuming the potential client doesn’t want to meet face to face immediately.
- Screen Share: I was an early adapter of Skype when it first came out, which is to say that I’ve been using it for years; but just recently I discovered that I can have the ability to share my screen with another skype account holder for free. SWEET! I am a big fan of screen shares. On that first appointment, I do a property search via a skype screen share. I do this for two reasons. First, I am an auditory learner and I spend a lot of time listening to what my clients say and don’t say about homes that they like and dislike. This format benefits me and the client alike because I am able to identify my client’s trends.
During our mutual property search, I ask the client to bookmark the houses they want more information on or houses they would like to see in person. If, for example, the client does not pick out any bi-levels homes, I generally ask say, “Hey I have a quick question for you. I noticed that you did not pick out any bi-levels from our property search. Have you ever been inside of a bi-level home? Bi-levels generally offer a family room and possibly a 4th bedroom in the lower level. . .The lower level room might be nice when guests come over. Should we look at at least one bi-level to determine if this is a good match for you?”
Another Example: “I’ve been inside house xyz and that 3rd bedroom is more like an office or den. You might not like the size of it.” And finally, here’s another example and one that is more common for this real estate market. “You know you mentioned you are looking for a smooth, quick closing? Of the 8 houses you selected, 3 are listed a short sales. These type of transactions, in my experience, take longer to close and aren’t always smooth. Should we revisit the list and select other houses?”
Overall I enjoy my virtual buyer appointments. The appointments help me to select and narrow down the buyer’s home search based on likes, interests, and comments as we are speaking. Also, when I do the showing appointments, I have a higher probability of writing a contract since I spent time with them eliminating what we don’t want to see.
That’s Your Agent Know How Training Minute of the week. Enjoy and get virtual on your next buyer appointment!
GoToMeeting, Teamviewer might be other alternatives to screen sharing if you don’t use Skpye. Just friendly FYI.