We just can’t help but spread the good news! If you’ve been to our Katy office in the last two and a half years, you’ve probably seen Erin Brown’s beautiful smile! We’re thrilled to announce her promotion to our Business Development team. Erin joins Keri Burdette to complete our dream team!
Let’s face it – not everyone is a natural salesperson. For those uncomfortable with the stereotypical style of a hard sell, business goals may seem out of reach. Never fear! You can achieve sales success without compromising your personality by following some of the guidelines below!
George Dudley and Shannon Goodson have developed a six-factor model of selling that takes into account different personalities and comfort levels.
The six styles they outline are:
Competition-oriented sellers are persistent in persuasive efforts. They don’t take no for an answer and will do everything within his or her power to close the deal.
Sellers who are Image-oriented rely on their reputation and credibility to help them stand out from the crowd. Their reputation has done most of the work ahead of time and customers usually seek out Image-oriented salespeople.
Need-oriented sellers focus on, you guessed it, the needs of the customer. They are diplomatic, quick to respond, and start relationships by asking questions meant to discover the customer’s real needs. They are problem solvers and are skilled at calming fears of reluctant clients.
Product-oriented sellers are extremely knowledgable about features and benefits of the product they are trying to sell. They are educators at heart and good at explaining complicated processes to their customers.
If you walk away from transactions with new friends, chances are you are Rapport-oriented. These kinds of sellers build and develop relationships with their clients, gaining trust and almost becoming business partners with their customers. Communication is key for this personality.
Service Oriented selling.
Service-oriented sellers fall somewhere between Rapport- and Need-oriented sellers. These sellers are able to explain and follow through on exceptional services, unique to their personality and brand.
SOURCES AND FURTHER READING:
When most people think of LinkedIn, they think of finding jobs or hiring employees. However, the social media platform offers so much more. It’s a great opportunity to make real connections and generate leads. When used correctly, creatively, and consistently, it can give your business a big boost.
Your Online Business Card
Treat your profile like a business card – you’d never attend a networking event without up-to-date and professional cards. Your profile should get the same attention. Make sure all of your information is current, including your profile picture. Take a good look at your online presence across social media, web sites, etc. Make sure that the pictures, logos, and other information are consistent across all platforms.
A well-written summary can represent you well. Use first person and conversational language. LinkedIn users will scan a resume, but will dig into a well-crafted paragraph. Take this opportunity to let people know who you really are. If you’re looking for leads on LinkedIn, avoid industry terms that prospective clients may not be familiar with and speak to them on their level.
Your Pictures Is Worth A Thousand Words
Because LinkedIn is a site meant for professionals, your profile picture should reflect your business persona. Snapshots, cropped photos, and family or vacation pics are not welcome here. Use your professional headshot. If you don’t have one, it’s time to invest in some good photography!
Finish What You Started
Everything on LinkedIn is searchable. The more complete your profile is, the easier it will be for prospective clients, business partners, and vendors to find you.
As you fill out your profile, think of your target connection. Are you looking for potential team members? Prospective clients? What words will they use to search for you on LinkedIn? Pepper your summary and experience with these search terms to optimize your chances of making good connections.
You have the opportunity to get the word out about your business by posting links, articles, status updates, and blogs. Do not pass up your chance to let the professional world know what you do! Show off your expertise and business savvy by contributing to the global conversation!
Social Media is all about participation. It’s reciprocal – you get out what you put in. Comment on posts, congratulate your connections on their new positions, anniversaries, and promotions. You never know where your next lead will come from. A simple happy birthday message could lead to a big sale!
John Rampton at Entrepreneur.com recently published a list of 15 must-have qualities for successful salespeople. You can see the full list here, but our five favorites are listed below!
Being conscientious means that you pay attention to what you’re doing, approaching each task with the intention of doing your work well and thoroughly. A conscientious attitude will shine through to your clients and prospects. They’ll appreciate the pride you take in your work, and it will give them confidence that you’ll approach their needs with the same diligence.
People can have different views of what it means to be respectful, so it’s a good idea to take a look at your actions and habits and make sure you’re considering the needs of the people around you. Do you respect others’ time by being prompt and prepared? Do you respect your clients’ needs by listening well and implementing their ideas? Do you respect the capabilities of your team members by asking their advice or delegating tasks to those who need experience? People who respect others earn respect back.
Persistence is a necessity in sales. Between cold calls, lukewarm clients, and sales slumps, it can be difficult to find the strength to keep going. Face rejection head on, take it as a necessity of the industry, and keep going! Rampton’s best advice here is “in lieu of the hard sell, lead with kindness and consideration.”
People who get things done rarely wait for others to take the lead. Instead of waiting for directions from your team, be proactive about your approach. Read everything you can about your business, and look ahead to what problems might arise so you can tackle them before they become issues. Your clients will certainly appreciate the forethought you have when it comes to dealing with their needs.
As important as it is to be persistent and take initiative, the best leaders know when they need help and advice. Rampton writes that “being energetic, willing to learn and having the ability to adapt” are all crucial skills. Constantly seek for ways to improve. Find a mentor to connect with if you haven’t already, and let them guide you through the next steps of your career.
Postcards, websites, knocking on doors…while these ideas are tried and true, marketing ideas are changing quickly. Below are some unique selling ideas that we’ve been seeing and hearing about – let us know what you think!
Text Message Marketing
By using a service like TextRock.com you can get a unique text code that sends home information to users’ phones – they opt in by texting your special number, found on the for sale sign in the yard. You can help prospective buyers learn about open houses, price changes, and more, while building your list of leads. A service like TextRock costs around $99/month.
Let people try before they buy by using Airbnb. This is truly unique and requires an open-minded seller, but it’s a plan that would definitely make a splash. The current homeowner would need to make their home available through Airbnb, but this isn’t difficult. Airbnb is such a trendy service – this kind of offer makes you appear to be a cutting edge agent and gives buyers confidence in their purchase.
With blogging being big business these days, it’s a great idea to seek out partnerships with local home decor and design bloggers. If you’ve got a beautiful or unique home, ask one a blogger to view the property and post a review of the home. You’re instantly getting new, interested eyes on the property.
Part of selling a home is selling the neighborhood, right? Take your social media followers on a virtual tour of the neighborhood. Move beyond the features of the home and take some live videos of restaurants, stores, playgrounds, and other nearby features of the neighborhood. Live videos are all the rage on social media – viewers spend 3x the amount of time watching live videos than they do watching uploaded videos.
Spring is here! While some are getting the itch to declutter and clean, it’s a great time to declutter what isn’t working in your business and make some new marketing plans!
Start (or beef up) your Instagram account
Here’s some big news – Instagram is now featured and shared on more websites than Twitter. While Twitter still has more account holders, this news means that Instagram is still growing steadily and more and more businesses and blogs are turning toward this trend. If you haven’t already set up an Instagram account, now is the time to do it! With a visual business like real estate, you’ll be missing out if you don’t.
What’s Coming Up?
April has some fun you can feature on social media and other marketing. April Fools Day, is of course, a lot of fun. Passover begins on March 30 and Easter falls April 1 this year. But don’t miss out on sending your clients and followers tips on green home living and recycling as Earth Day approaches on April 20.
Social Media Focus: Green Living
As we mentioned above, Earth Day on April 20 will have a lot of minds turning toward recycling and green living options. Highlight your local recycling center, tips on conserving water and energy at home, and growing your own vegetables. The spring season will have your followers craving this info.
Social Media Challenge: Make a Plan
Some entrepreneurs may like to “wing it” in their social media marketing. But in this day and age, social media provides the most affordable way to reach your followers. You can get in on their everyday conversations and promote your business, free of cost (unless you choose to run an ad). Your social media marketing should receive just as much attention, if not more, than your other forms of marketing. Sit down and ask yourself what you want to accomplish on social media? More followers? More leads? More visibility? How will you get there…by posting more regularly, by running occasional ads, and by developing a strong and consistent presence online.