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The Two Most Important Activities in Commercial Real Estate Brokerage

By Jim Gillespie | May 14, 2010

In its simplest form, your success in commercial real estate brokerage comes down to doing these two activities outstandingly:

1. Finding the people you want to work with who will be closing commercial real estate transactions

2. Getting these people to work with you exclusively

This presupposes that you already have both the knowledge and the ability to successfully initiate, negotiate, and close commercial real estate transactions from beginning to end.

So if you’re having difficulty developing more business for yourself, the true problem will most likely lie within one or both of these arenas. You’re either not finding enough prospects, you’re not getting your prospects to work with you exclusively, or both of these.

Finding more prospects has to do primarily with both your prospecting and your marketing, while at the same time today’s economy is having its own impact, too. But let’s focus here on what you actually have control over, and that’s doing your best and doing everything you can to find the greatest number of prospects imaginable.

With this in mind, ask yourself the following questions:

1. Are you prospecting 10-12 hours or more every week?

The more you prospect, the more prospects you’re going to find. And if you’re not finding enough prospects to work with, while not prospecting at least 10-12 hours a week, you really need to just get this amount of prospecting done with no excuses.

2. Are you mailing to your clients and prospects two or more times every month, providing them with important trends, information, and observations on the marketplace they’ll want to know about?

I know that the money for spending on marketing may not be flowing as easily as it was before, but the best marketer I know of in commercial real estate brokerage is still spending his normal $100,000.00 a year on marketing, even though his business is down by 30%.

In addition, there’s only one residential agent who’s mailing to me at my home right now, and it’s no surprise that he’s got the only two listings on my block. In fact, he’s the only agent in my neighborhood whose name even comes to mind right now, and this is what you can accomplish in people’s minds by mailing, too.

One commercial real estate broker who I’ve coached put together a system of prospecting, mailing, faxing, and E-mailing all of his clients and prospects 105 times a year, and it’s no surprise that he soon became the #1 multi-family broker within his state. He even bought his own private airplane to fly his clients and prospects around in to look at properties.

Marketing isn’t just an expense. The returns in commissions will come back to you many times over, even in this economy.

3. Are you constantly improving your presentation skills?

Your presentation skills get your prospects to work with you exclusively, or they get them to work with your competitors instead of you. And unfortunately so little time is spent working on presentation skills within our industry. With this in mind I recommend that you videotape your listing presentation, or your exclusive right to represent a buyer or lessee presentation, and have someone role play with you as the decision maker. Go through your presentation as you normally would from beginning to end, then leave the camera running and get the person’s feedback at the end of the presentation. You’ll be amazed at what you’ll discover, and this one process alone can greatly assist you in landing a higher percentage of exclusives in the future.

If you’re doing something in your presentation that’s interfering with landing more exclusives, wouldn’t you want to find out about this, make the correction, and successfully land more business because of this? I had one coaching client do this process and he found that he was constantly tapping his fingers on the decision maker’s desk, something he had been completely unaware of, but something he realized had probably been a huge distraction to every single decision maker he had made presentations to.

Your success in this business comes down to effectively doing activities like the ones I’ve been describing, and the better you become at mastering these activities, the more successful you’re going to be in your brokerage business.

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If you’re interested in one-on-one coaching to take your commercial real estate brokerage business to the next level, click here to send me an E-mail.

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Marcus & Millichap

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