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Winning Over The Whales - How To Close Top Teams and Brokerage Deals

Updated: Mar 6, 2023

You’ve done all the hard work. You’re in the door with a top producer, a worthy team, or even a big brokerage. Now, it’s all about closing out. Here’s exactly how, from pitching a room of agents to securing a deal with a one-on-one meeting.

In addition to founding and building marketing agencies like ACRE Partner and Aerial Canvas, Brendan Hsu is passionate about mentoring up-and-comers in the industry.


The thoughts and strategies outlined in this article are taken from two coaching sessions Brendan held with ACRE partners eager to nail an important brokerage meeting.


In case you missed it, here’s Part 1 and Part 2 in the series on Winning Bigger Clients.


The Big Group Meeting


From cold calling potential clients to navigating through all the “no”s you’ve been told, you have done a lot of work up to this point. Finally, you secured a meeting with a brokerage.


But the task at hand isn’t finished.


So, what now?


How to Tell A Story to Clients

You want to start the meeting making sure everyone feels good. Don’t be afraid to get personal — that’s where you can form a true connection. Ask them where they’re from, what their passions and hobbies are.


Then, transition into the start of your meeting. Right off the bat, tell the agents and brokers in the room your “why” — why you went into this business, some industry connections you’ve made to establish a reputation, and most of all, what your own story is.


Tie yourself to a larger, transformative vision that everyone can align with.


In a group setting, the best way to secure a partnership is using a story. Story sells. Your story should tie together with your journey, your why, your mission and vision for your business and your clients.


It’s not just about increasing your sales by “X” amount. Numbers are needed to back your services up, of course. But save that for the one-on-one meetings you’ll secure from this group presentation, particularly if the client is a practical type (more on that later).


Instead of “My marketing agency has increased revenue by x% based on Package #1,” say “I’m here to change the way real estate marketing is done — and I want you to be on that journey with me.”


And don’t stop there. Throughout the presentation, continue selling your story.


Pitch yourself, not just as a vendor, but as a long-term partner. Someone there to help them maximize marketing and consult them on better solutions.


Tell them your services are all about connecting them with their ideal audience, engaging with clients better and taking their agency to the next level.


Help them realize all the potential you can help unlock: “When you're in the same room as your competitor, I want marketing to be the very last thing that holds you back from winning that listing.”


Connecting with Clients in the Room

It’s just as important to connect with your clients on an individualized basis. One quick and easy way to do that is to change your language. Instead of saying “you guys,” say “you.”


Another way is to engage with your audience through interactive questions. After a show of hands, take that feedback and translate them to showcase why you are the best for the job.


“Who here has a go-to photographer?”


Their relationship with their photographer doesn’t need to be cut off if they start doing business with you. Instead, help them understand you are there to enhance that relationship. As a growing agency, you can possibly hire those photographers or work with them on a contract basis. Or coach them on creating better content that works on social media.


“Who here has worked with video before? What did that do for your listings? Was there anything you wished went better with your experience?”


Their prior experiences with video, whether good or bad, can be used to your advantage. If it drove sales, leverage that knowledge as proof of concept that marketing with video sells listings quicker. If they had bad experiences, showcase your emphasis on customer satisfaction and consistent product quality. And most importantly, video works. Top brands and agents are all consistently investing in video because it is creating a ROI.


The One-on-One


From your group presentation, you should secure a few individual meetings with different brokers and agents. You’ve conquered the group dynamic. Now, it’s time to shift your focus — and close a client. Keep in mind, closing means building a long-term relationship.


Know your Client

The business of sales is about people. Understanding how they behave and think.


You’ve probably heard this saying before. Understanding your client is foundational in every step of this process. It’s even more important in the last leg of the race.


A simple system to read your client's personality type and adapt accordingly is called PASE, this is used by Charlie Munger, a business investor and business man. And I learned it from Tai Lopez. PASE stands for: Practical, Action, Social, Emotional.


These are the four types of potential clients. Every person carries shades of all four, but honing in on the primary type is key to angling your pitch.


Remember, knowing your client isn’t just about knowing what type of person they are. It’s also about what they envision for their brokerage. Key into their expectations, their price point, their niche, and most importantly, their needs.


But how do you do this?


Ask the right questions to get a sense of who they are as leaders and decision-makers.


Feel free to use these as guiding questions or even a stepping stone:

  • What do you think has made you and your brokerage successful so far?

  • What can we do to make your brokerage stand out more and be exclusive to be a part of?

  • What are some other brokerages or real estate companies you aspire to be like?

  • What type of agents are you looking to attract?


And the golden question: What is your current situation, and what is your ideal situation?


Then, tell them how you can bridge that gap.


If your client is practical, they’ll be down in the nitty gritty — the numbers of their business. Emphasize how your product can increase their brokerage numbers and return on investment.


Are they action-oriented? Then lean into a more aggressive marketing style and give them a deadline — attached with a promotion, if necessary — to sign with you.


Clients that are social like to do business with their friends. Work hard to foster trust and friendship, so they can invest in you as a person.


Emotional clients are even more invested in a story. Align with their brand values and show them you understand the team dynamic they bring for each agent or customer.


Don’t Show Your Cards Too Early

At this point, many of you are now eager to give your client a good deal. We’ve all made that mistake — hoping to wow a client but instead, coming off as cheap.


Don’t push discounts too early. You want to show you are in high demand. Marketing your own value is just as important as the value of your product.


By presenting your normal price point, you’re giving yourself wiggle room to negotiate later.


Let your clients squeeze you when you set the benchmark. Don’t let them squeeze you when you’re already at your minimum.


Chasing the Win-Win

When working with brokerages, you can even structure discounts to work in your favor.


For example, rather than giving a $250 discount on all packages right off the bat, leverage a discounted price in order to secure more business.


If a broker recommends your services to all of their agents, then you can offer a discount.


OR


Discuss a rebate program with the brokerage. The broker can offer a subsidy of $250 on your services to their agents, incentivizing agents to work for their brokerage. Then you can return a rebate of $125 to the broker, given that a certain number of agents sign up for your services.


You’ve now created a win-win situation with your business acumen, rather than showing your cards too early at the table and losing out.


Coming out of a meeting, a deal, you name it — everyone wants to feel like they just won. Use this knowledge to make strategic promotions.


Create Custom Packages

Don’t overload your client with custom packages at the very start.


Instead, incentivize them to choose to invest in you and your product. The steps are Sales 101:

  • Plant the seed

  • Give them motivation

  • Establish a target to hit – products to try out


This doesn’t mean don’t be prepared. Make sure you have suggestions or even custom packages ready to go, geared toward your client’s specific needs.


Don’t be a restaurant that only has the buffet option. Diversify your product line — add in some steak, pasta and seafood options, and see what your clients like. And you can even throw in some deserts at the end to sweeten the deal.


Plant the seed by introducing your normal pricing. Then turn the tables back on them. Ask: “If you’re looking to do something innovative, here are some custom packages I’ve prepared. What do you think this is worth to your business?”


Then, give them motivation. Encourage your client to utilize your services to the fullest. Ask: “How many agents do you think can benefit from my services?”


Lastly, establish a target. This goes back to creating win-win situations. Offer a discount, but make it contingent on the amount of business they can get you.


And remember, photo and video packages don’t only need to apply to real estate listings. Many brokerages need to recruit and retain agents.


So, instead of — or in addition to — offering discounts on your services, you can throw in a team recruitment video.


This is going above and beyond for your client. It not only emphasizes the quality and service you can offer as a partner, but also shows you understand exactly what they need.


Closing the Deal

I’ve talked a lot about knowing your client. The last piece of advice I have is your clients must feel like they know who you are.


No one cares what you do until they know how much you care.


You can throw as many custom packages and discounts at them. But showing you care about them and their business, about long-term growth together, about going above and beyond — all of that goes a long way.


With these steps and strategies, you’re even closer to closing that deal with your dream client.


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