By now you are well into prospecting for new clients and you have some meetings on the calendar.
The purpose of the first meeting is to build momentum. It’s all about discovery: find out where your prospect is in the process and what their needs are, what opportunities may exist, demonstrate your knowledge of the market, and establish next steps to keep momentum going.
Follow these quick steps to make your initial meeting a success.
Do your research
Revolutionary, right? Almost all brokers do this, but how can you make yourself stand out?
The first thing to do is check the company record in Apto. Contact Relationships can tell you if anyone has already worked with your prospect or has any connections within the company. If so, who was the most successful? If only the contact or meeting stage was reached, why?
To access Apto's contact relationships feature, open the subject Company, scroll down to the associated Contacts list and click "View Contact Relationships".
Here you'll see which one of your teamates or officemates has been in contact with this company, how far they got with them and when the last time they had recorded any activity with them. You'll also be able to connect with your officemate with a single button click.
You also need to understand the market, your prospect’s property and your prospect’s current position. There will be certain problems that most business owners or property owners are struggling with; identify those issues. Maybe the owner is not happy with the valuation they got from previous meetings. In this case, you can present them with comps and an appraisal of their property. This also provides a reason to have another meeting.
Reference your prospecting activity: what got you the meeting in the first place? Discover your client’s pain point and come prepared with at least two ways to address it.
To access the history of events up to the point of your engagement, open your subject Contact and scroll down to the "Activity History" section. Here you'll see all past phone calls, meetings, emails and tasks associated with your contact.
Get them talking
This is one of the best ways to get information on a potential deal, but you need to ask the right questions. Your goal from this meeting is to understand your prospect’s motivations and uncover all opportunities for business. Make sure to ask open-ended questions. What are their frustrations? What excites them?
Don’t only focus on business. CRE is about relationship-building; try to connect on a common interest. Ideally the first meeting will occur in their office. Make sure to look out for pictures of family and pets, awards, diplomas, etc.
When discussing their needs, you should cover current market conditions and get a better understanding of their thoughts and hopes for their property. It’s an opportunity for you to provide insight: use your knowledge to validate their needs or help them understand what they need.
Incorporating your Apto database into your meeting can help you demonstrate your expertise. Project your screen and actually show potential clients your knowledge of properties, the market, potential buyers/sellers, and tenants whose needs match those of your prospect. All that information can help them throughout their property campaign and sale or lease requirement.
Schedule a follow-up meeting
In the meeting, find or create a reason to schedule another meeting. Look for opportunities to send them something of value, whether it’s a BOV or an employee commute map. It should be something tangible and specific.
Following your initial meeting, spend time reviewing your notes and build a custom pitch based on the need analysis. When you are properly prepared, you can win their business down the road.
Once you have a solid game plan, create tasks and activities to make sure you deliver. Creating activities is done through the same process as the commonly used call logging feature. In fact you going to want to click the "Log a Call" button under Activity History to create a new meeting event. Click the button and then change the subject to one of your choosing like "Meeting Notes". Fill in the rest of the information and make sure to fill out the bottom section to create a follow-up task.