Is “comfortable prospecting” an oxymoron?
I don’t think it is!
Yet the top thing I hear from agents all across this great land of ours is that they can’t prospect because it is too uncomfortable.
Most find it uncomfortable because they feel as though they’re bothering people, being sales-y, or just being irritating. Does any of this sound familiar?
True, if you call someone out of the blue and read off some slick script without any real understanding of his or her needs, situation, or psychology, you’re going to come across badly. That’s exactly what has given salespeople a bad rep.
I even invented a word for it: silicious, which comes from the root “solicit”.
There’s another way to prospect – one that isn’t silicious. High-level real estate sales is about having engaging conversations with people about real estate. These conversations must be natural and deliberate. They need to be about the prospect, not about the agent.
For instance, “I sold the house down the street for 99.8% of the asking price” is not as effective as, “Your neighbours just sold, and they received an amazing price for their home. How long have you lived in the neighbourhood?” The difference between these two approaches is significant; one evokes the prospect’s defenses, while the other evokes his or her curiosity. It’s easy to see how it works – grab a colleague and role-play it to see how it feels to be on the receiving end.
If you feel uncomfortable prospecting, I have something for you to try. I call it “Out and About”, and I believe it is the simplest portal to achieve high-level sales skills.
Here’s how it works: make an intention to have three deliberation conversations about real estate while you’re out and about. The coffee shop checkout lineup, the neighbour planting a new rose bush in her front garden, the server at the restaurant – these are all Out and About opportunities. Any person that you come across during the day counts. Choose a mindset of curiosity, ask simple questions about the other person, and keep your ego out of it.
You’ll be amazed at how effective it is!