Don’t assume that buyers are paying attention. The human attention span generally lasts about eight seconds, a finding that highlights the effects of an increasingly digitalized lifestyle on the brain. As a seller, you must recognize this to position your sale for success.
As a population, we’re over-stimulated and constantly feeling a restless anxiety. We multitask, we work through lunch, we’re always rushing. We’re unfocused much of the time. This is a huge problem because to sell your property, you must first gain the attention of the likely buyers.
The days of sticking a sign in the ground and waiting for the phone to ring are over, and one ad online isn’t enough. These approaches are too passive. Like it or not, people are more distracted than ever before. Their attention is so fragmented that you shouldn’t assume they’re going to find your property on their own. Here's what you should be doing instead.
Push your property directly to its likely buyers.
Your property has to find them — not the other way around. Most sellers and their brokers fail on this count for three reasons:
• They don’t know how to do it right. They don’t have the skills, tools or experience.
• It’s a lot more work than simply installing a sign or posting an ad online.
Know what your likely buyer looks like.
Is it an investor? Is it a business owner who would occupy the property? If you know the marketplace, then you should know what your likely buyer looks like.
Get their contact information.
Now that you know what your likely buyer looks like, you need to get their contact information. You should have a database tool that provides you with segmented names, mailing addresses, phone numbers and emails. You’re going to need them all.
Craft your “property story."
Before you start contacting buyers, you need to know what you’re going to tell them. Here’s the wrong opening line: “Hello, we just listed a property that I think you might be interested in. Do you have a few minutes for me to tell you about it?”
People are busy. You just interrupted them — don’t bore them to death now. Be interesting. Craft a “property story” that engages them. Is the property priced to sell because of a divorce? Are there substantial value-add opportunities? What do your likely buyers care about? Here’s an example of how to do it right:
“Mike! We just listed a property similar to the one you own on 18th St. I’d really like to get you all the information today because it’s priced to sell. The seller relocated out of state and he’s ordered us to sell it fast. This is one of those opportunities to get a great property at a great price. Can we send you all the information including the 3D virtual tour?”
Give them the information and the media they want.
Today, the property specifications alone are not enough. You must give potential buyers high-quality photos, video, a 3D virtual tour, floor plans, drone aerial video and site plans. Buyers want to see it, not just read about it. Don’t make them work hard — that’s your job. Let them tour the property at their convenience from the comfort of their office. Give them the information and the media they want, instantly if possible.
Finally, don’t sell — start conversations instead. There are many ways to do this but here’s the method we’ve been most successful with:
Lead with a direct mail piece. Then, follow-up with phone calls, emails and text messages.
With each communication, direct the likely buyer to a property landing page with its own unique URL where they can take a 3D virtual tour, see photos and watch aerial video. Once you've sufficiently piqued their interest with the media, lead them to a full and comprehensive package of property information.
Set up a notification to alert you when a buyer downloads the information. Then, put them on a short list of legitimate buyers and follow up to scheduled call to talk through their remaining questions.
Do we have signs, social media, online ads, press releases and every other tool? Yes, of course. And sometimes we get lucky and that’s how we find our buyer. But to rely on them completely is a mistake that costs the seller money. In today’s age of eight-second attention spans, you must go directly to your likely buyers. The sellers who understand this win.
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