Have you ever noticed that one
agent who always seems to be selling more, always seems to be in first place,
and tends to always have the highest production numbers? They appear to have it
all together and sell more than anyone else. Oftentimes, we assume their
success is attributed to how long they have been in business, or that customers
tend to flock to them to buy. That could not be further from the truth.
In reality, the habits of high
producing agents are so tiny and minute, they are not observable by the average
salesperson. Most of the time, even the managers can’t pin down exactly what it
is they do that causes people to buy from them. In the past 30 years, I’ve identified
seven traits that all successful agents seem to possess. These are those seven
tiny secrets and skills that I’ve seen first-hand help certain agents to rise
above the rest.
Don’t underestimate the ability of
these small things to turn a customer’s passive awareness into an active interest
in your product. Adapt and incorporate all seven of these tiny secrets into
your daily sales process for maximum impact and added bonus, known as a force
multiplier. This is just another secret of top producing agents.
1. Everyone is
not a buyer.
first got into this business, I was taught that everyone walking through the
door was a buyer. I found myself wasting a lot of time. I have since discovered
that top producers have an uncanny ability to qualify quickly, get a sense of
reality, and balance their time between those who are simply looking for
decorating ideas and the ones who have a true need and desire to buy a home
now. The top agents know who to spend time with and who not to. They give their
time and attention where it’s most needed and become laser-beam focused on true
specials are killing you.
builders habitually throw out monthly specials or incentives to close deals and,
sadly, many agents depend on them as their primary closing strategy. When incentives
fail to help close a deal, the average agent wonders why. On the other hand,
top producers realize that it’s not about the gimmicks, it’s about the
investment in time. Today’s consumers are pushed for time. Master influencers
understand and respect that. They use incentives (i.e. whether the buyer will
get a new refrigerator) as the “icing on the cake,” not as the basis of the
3. Stop saying
there’s a problem, a hiccup, or mishap, I’ve noticed that most agents are quick
to apologize to customers and say, “I’m sorry.” I suppose that’s the right thing
to do. We make a mistake, or something goes wrong, and we apologize for it. Here’s
the difference: top producers never say,
“I’m sorry.” The only words you’ll ever
hear from a top producer are, “Don’t worry, I’ll take care of that.” Today’s
consumers expect you to solve problems, not apologize for them. So take it from the masters – stop
apologizing and start remedying.
4. “But what
about my days off?”
a lot of agents who are overly concerned with their weekends, days off and their
next vacation. They remind me that they don’t want to get burnt out, and I get
it. True sales masters understand the 25/8/366 factor: the highest producers make
themselves available to their customers 25 hours a day, 8 days a week, 366 days
a year. They’re on alert and ready to
write deals and answer questions no matter the time of day. You’re probably
thinking, “OMG! I don’t want to work like that!” And that’s okay! Just don’t
expect to join the 2% club of top producers.
noting that those top producers are not actually putting in much more time –
they just understand the importance of being available at the customer’s
convenience. They get deals done when they need to be done. It’s a mentality,
not a physical commitment.
5. You are not
a tour guide.
many agents meet and greet their customers, begin some form of qualifying, and walk
customers around their models talking about how great and wonderful everything
is (including themselves). They hand the customer a brochure and tell them to
call if they have any questions. What they fail to understand is that, in most
situations, the first visit is all about closing on the second visit. Masters
of influence understand this tiny subtlety in the process, allowing them to plant
the proper seeds to make the shift from a passive interest into an active
involvement. They don’t just listen to the customers, they actively interpret
what they are saying in order to make their sales presentation far more
effective and powerful.
6. Stop using
the wrong word.
This is another tiny difference between the average agent and the top producer that
is hard to detect, but so important. Top producers start their presentation
using the right words and continue to do so during their entire presentation.
Here’s a simple example: the average agent gives a demonstration, explaining
that “if” the customer buys this home they will get …” Maybe you didn’t even
notice, but top agents use the right language and the right syntax. Here’s the
tiny difference: “When you buy this home …” By simply infusing more of this
type of language, you begin to set up your customer’s sense of ownership very
early on in the game. Does changing one or two words actually cause them to
buy? Well, when you add all of these tiny strategies up, the simple answer is
yes. It can make all of the difference in how the costumer sees you and the
product and their mind shifts from one of a looker to one of an actively
pressure, no diamonds.
There is plenty
of sales training out there that still teaches a lot of old school techniques
for closing the deal: The Alternate Close, The Ben Franklin Close, The Takeaway
Close. To get more commitments and close
more sales, you must understand the difference between high-pressure selling
and letting pressure occur organically. It is human nature to want to acquire
goods. It’s also human nature to say, “No.” Today’s masters of influence
understand that creating urgency is the top priority during the sales
presentation. And urgency combined with the enhanced presentation skills will
simply mean you stop applying pressure externally and allow the pressure to
occur organically and you sell in the theater of the mind. When executed
properly, you will have more customers giving you the buying signals that it’s
time to close – not because of any tricks or gimmicks, but because they came to
the conclusions logically and rationally on their own; which are the true
results of your enhanced presentation skills.
Adapt these simple mindsets and tiny
strategies and I can assure you, you will see your closings increase as you get
better and join the masters of influencers at the top.
John A. Palumbo is an
expert in the science of influence and persuasion and a highly sought-after
marketing strategist and global speaker. He has been invited to lecture around
the world including Ukraine, Mexico, Poland, Canada, and Jamaica, on his unique
perspective on consumer psychology and human behavior. He is author of eight
best-selling books, including Sell the
Results, John’s newest book that managers are calling, “The best thing to
ignite our sales results in a long time.”
[This is an excerpt of an article that originally appeared in the NSMC Sales + Marketing Ideas magazine app. Download the app on iTunes or GooglePlay.]
Hear John speak at IBS 2018.