What is the best way of conducting a listing presentation? Most agents ask themselves this question from time to time. How do you decide if you want to have this lead as a client or if this is someone you would hate working with? How do you convince them to sign a contract with you? The answers are in the strength of your listing presentation: specifically how well practiced you are, your ability to stay calm and confident in a conversation, your mastery of handling objections and your closing skills. All this is only important if you are presenting your story to a qualified lead, which takes us to your ability to pre-qualify.
Let’s start with the pre-qualification script. Do you pre-qualify every single lead before committing to seeing them in person? If you want to save yourself the disappointment of going to a listing appointment just to find out that they are really thinking about selling in 2 years after retirement or that they are thinking about getting a price that is 25% above market value, you have to pre-qualify. Another benefit of pre-qualifying is minimizing wasted appointments. With all the preparatory work, driving back and forth and the appointment itself, you are looking at 3 hours minimum. A 10 minute pre-qualification phone call can save your the unnecessary trip, will improve your overall efficiency and will help you establish better rapport with your lead without even seeing them. How about a boost to your self-confidence, because your conversion numbers are going to be higher? No matter what pre-qualification script you are using, you goal is to answer at least two main questions. One: motivation to move and two: pricing expectations. If there is no motivation and the price is off - don’t go. If the motivation is there, but the price is off - go see them in person and your job is to educate them on the price. If there is no motivation, but the price is within the market realities (most often happens in the seller’s market) - go see them in person and take the listing. If they are motivated and the price is right - go and see them today. At least on the basis of these two parameters they seem to be a client you want to work with.
Now that you have pre-qualified them, it is time to prepare for the listing presentation. The listing presentation is your show. Your lead has bought the tickets and ready to see you perform. Their signatures on the contract is your standing ovation. The listing presentation should be delivered in such a convincing, engaging and confident way there should simply be no question in their mind if you are the right person to get the job done for them. There are just few pre-requisites for a good listing presentation structure: 1. It should be logically consistent and take you from “Hello” at the door to the signed contract within the hour that you talk to them. 2. It should be question based. 3. It must focus on their motivation, the price for their property and your ability to deliver what they need. That’s it.
Do you use a script every time you see a client or you are free-forming it? A canned listing presentation script will allow you to control the conversation better and will give you a much better conversion ratio. Most listing presentation scripts I’ve seen are a variation of Mike Ferry’s script, which though old (may be mature and proven in this case), will still help you deliver the punch necessary to take a listing. The structure of that script is like this:
- Go through the “one minute” listing presentation. This is where you suggest to the client that they sign within the first 5 minutes of a conversation. If you have pre-qualified them well, sent them a package with your marketing information and deliverables (pre-listing package), they might be ready to sign as soon as they see you.
- Repeat pre-qualification questions and talk about their motivation - serves as a reminder of their own intentions to sell.
- Give example of typical buyer considerations. In Mike Ferry’s version it is about cars. If talking about cars is not your thing, your lead is over 100 years old and does not drive or lives in the city and does not believe in driving, you can substitute this part for anything that strikes your fancy. Just remember that giving an example of a typical buyer behaviour and their considerations is important at this stage of a presentation. This sets the stage for a pricing conversation. Also, make sure that you don’t scramble for an example by winging it in front of your client. Have two or three canned alternatives ready and practiced before you step into the house.
- Have a pricing discussion. All question based as well. Make sure your client is even more involved in the conversation than you are.
- Handle objections and close.
That’s the whole script. I suggest you download and use Mike Ferry’s script first. If you develop a strong disagreement with the script or your ability to deliver it, practicing is the best answer. What I often see, is that agents are claiming that the script is too strong for their liking and that they need to water it down by skipping questions or arbitrarily omitting parts of the presentation. If this is how you feel about this script - you are the problem. Keep practicing until you can deliver the whole thing with confidence and without your palms sweating. When you are at this stage and can reliably take listings using Mike Ferry’s script, you may consider alternatives. I doubt they will work better, as you will already have the most important skills engrained in your by this time. You will know how to go deep into their motivation, how to conduct the pricing conversation with confidence and how to handle objections and close them for signatures. Variety is the spice of life and using alternatives from time to time will keep you entertained.
Lastly, you need to role play and practice your listing presentation script before you ever use it on clients. Don’t be sitting all by yourself, reciting the lines aloud. Practice with your role playing partners until your performance is automatic and authentic. Practice objections and closing while role playing the entire script, but also separately - to make sure you have an arsenal that is wide enough for anything your client might throw at you and for every personality type you encounter.