Who Do You Trust?

May 08, 2014

By Mike Pallin, Master Trainer and President of The Floyd Wickman Team

Whose opinion do you trust? Whose advice do you seek? Whose numbers are the most accurate?

When the question is, “How much can I get for my home?” - the answer for most homeowners in North America is still – consult a local real estate broker.

Almost all home searches by prospective buyers that once began with a local real estate broker, now begin on the internet. But people who are thinking of selling look to local real estate for an opinion of value.

Yes, it’s true that many people visit one of the websites that promise a price opinion (and usually deliver more spam than accurate data) – some use the old ‘ask your neighbor’ approach – and some brave souls still, believe it or not, test the market waters themselves by trying to sell by owner.

But the most common method of finding out current market value is to invite three or more brokers over to the house, one at a time, to take a look and give an opinion. While the vast majority of buyers usually work with the first agent they meet, sellers are interviewing multiple listing agents before choosing.

With the current inventory shortages, the competition is fierce, but it can be won more often than not if you remember three sure-fire tie-breakers. Each of these tie-breakers can put you ahead of the game, but all three in combination are unbeatable.

The first tie-breaker is relationship.

How many people think of you as “my Realtor,” and regularly refer you to their friends and family? As in, “Oh, you're thinking of selling? You should talk to my Realtor!”

The secret is not in how many people you know, but in how many people the people you know are willing to refer to you. That is a trust that is earned by taking really, really good care of the people you know. By always doing what you say you will do, sometimes more, just never less, to paraphrase Floyd Wickman’s Core Values.

People will refer you as a favor, not to you, but to their friends and family, when you deliver what you promise. When you keep in touch. When you ask. When you prove yourself trustworthy.

All things being equal, if I am competing with two or three other brokers for a listing, but I have been referred in by a friend or family member, that’s a real and distinct advantage.

The second tie-breaker is bells and whistles. (I was going to just say technology, but that’s so trite, and bells and whistles sounds cooler.)

Bells and whistles mean things like innovative marketing approaches. Take a good, hard look at your marketing presentation and ask yourself, “What differentiates me from my competition?” Sellers expect all the traditional marketing tools to be part of the picture, but I think they are also looking for a “wow” factor. Like a virtual tour put together on hdhat.com. Like a lead capture system. Like a web syndication. Like a network of strategic relationships.

All things being equal, if I have been referred in AND my marketing plan is customized and cutting edge, that’s a double whammy to your competition.

The third tie-breaker is skill. Selling skill.

Realtionships have to be earned over time. Technology has to be invested in. But skill has to be developed and mastered with practice.

Out of every 10 really successful people, one gets by on dynamic personality, or natural charisma, or luck, or dogged persistence alone. But 90% of the really great salespeople have added history-proven selling skills to their repertoire.

Relationships and technology won’t convert leads to appointments, or put you in positive control, or show you the art of questioning to discover needs, or deliver a professional presentation, or price it right, or handle hesitations and stalls, or get signatures. Only skill can do those things for you.

All things being equal, even if I am brand new and my competitors are credentialed veterans, when I am referred in AND I have a wow factor AND I am skillful at presenting, then I really have no competition.

By the way, if you’re looking for a training program that will give you all of the how-to’s, and develop all three tie-breakers simultaneously, look no further than The Floyd Wickman Program.

Happy listing!

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