Viewing by month: November 2012

Tips for dealing with customer complaints

As a real estate agent, you will likely have to deal with unhappy clients at one point or another in your career – sometimes for reasons within your control, sometimes for reasons that aren’t. Whatever the case, the reality remains the same – if you want to successfully foster long-lasting client relationships and maximise your business potential, you have to know how to effectively deal with complaints.


Here are five quick tips to help you deal effectively and efficiently with client complaints: 


1.       Respond quickly: when a client is angry, the worst thing that you can do is give their anger further time to escalate; the longer you leave it to contact them or implement a resolution, the more likely it is that they will conclude you don’t care about their issue. If – however, you contact clients quickly and display a willingness to solve their problems, you’ll likely find that many of them forgive mistakes and stick around;

2.       Always let clients speak first: when communicating with an unhappy client, it is always best to first gain a full understanding of their perceived problem; this can only be done if you allow them to speak first. In addition, it is always wise to maintain eye contact (if in person) and refrain from speaking until the client has finished explaining their issues; this will demonstrate that you value their feedback and are engaged with their concerns;

3.       Always apologise: apologising to the client, whether you are responsible or not, communicates an important level of empathy and appreciation for their concerns. This often works to diffuse the client’s anger and re-establish a level of rapport, both of which are necessary elements of working effectively towards a resolution;

4.       Explain and update: this is your main chance to give the client a reason to continue their relationship with you. As such, you should attempt to detail the various processes that will be involved in resolving their issue, as well as the likely outcomes attached to such (this is an important part of managing their expectations). From then on, you should ensure that the client is given regular updates until their issue is resolved;

5.       Learn from the experience: once the complaint has been dealt with, take some time to reflect on how you handled the process and the lessons that you can draw from such. Very few – if any real estate agents enjoy dealing with client complaints; nevertheless, if you can effectively manage the resolution process and learn from these experience, customer complaints can be one of the greatest catalysts for improving your owns skills and services. 

0 comments | Posted by Reality Bytes - Real Estate Training Blog on 30/11/2012 at 12:00 AM | Categories:

The place of social media within real estate

Some commentators have predicted that social media will become the dominant marketing channel for businesses in the medium-to-long-term future. If this does eventuate, real estate agents across the board are going to need to consider not only whether to implement a social media strategy, but also, how to effectively do such.


Here are three key factors that agents should keep in mind when assessing potential social media strategies:


Social media strategies must be inherently ‘strategic’


For social media marketing platforms to work, they need to be backed by clearly rationalised and executable strategies; without such, agents can place themselves at risk of doing more harm than good to their reputations and marketability. Given such, it is always a wise move to consider your marketing objectives before implementing a social media strategy and then, in light of these objectives, assess whether your strategy is both feasible and appropriate. For example, if you are an agent looking to target pensioners in retirement areas, a rigorous social media campaign may not be the best use of your time and resources.


 Social media strategies require time and maintenance


To be truly worthwhile, social media strategies must engage audiences in a way that traditional media platforms can’t; that is, they need to foster interactivity and discourse with followers. As such, it is vital that agents properly maintain their social media pages. This includes uploading regular content, monitoring feedback and promptly responding to comments. For agents that fail to execute these fundamentals, there is a strong possibility of their pages becoming redundant – or worse, of them receiving some form of backlash from their followers.


Social media strategies must be consistent and integrated


Successful implementation of a social media marketing campaign requires a high level of consistency between an agent’s online and offline presence. As such, agents must take care to ensure that the messages they project – be it in person, on advertisements or in the media – are reflected in their social media output. Without such, agents can potentially undermine the own credibility and/or cause confusion amongst their followers. 


For real estate agents, the decision to implement a social media marketing strategy should not be taken lightly; not only do social media platforms necessitate a considerable amount of time and maintenance, but they also require agents to communicate effectively and quickly – obligations that are not always easy in the busy and often time-scarce profession that is real estate. Nevertheless, if agents can successfully manage to execute all of the required social media marketing elements, they may be able to unlock a cost efficient and powerful medium for connecting with target markets like never before. 

0 comments | Posted by Reality Bytes - Real Estate Training Blog on 23/11/2012 at 12:00 AM | Categories:

Strategies for improving personal job satisfaction

The recently released 2012 Insync Surveys Retention Review has found that 51 per cent of Australians rate job satisfaction as the most important factor in determining their career pathway. The survey highlights that many professionals are becoming increasingly disengaged from their workplace due to a lack of career prospects and professional development opportunities. While employers must arguably play a significant role in helping to remedy these problems, employees themselves can also implement strategies to improve their job satisfaction levels.


Here are five tips to help you improve your job satisfaction levels:


·         Try to pinpoint areas where can enhance your job performance:  if you actively set professional performance goals, you are more likely to have a sense of purpose and progress within your work, which is conducive to increasing one’s job satisfaction.

·         Where appropriate, collaborate with other staff members: it is commonly the case that when a worker engages with others, they experience greater levels of engagement, creativity and positive reinforcement. Therefore, if opportunities do arise to complete tasks in a team environment, it is often a smart idea to take them up.

·         Maintain a work-life balance: most people would agree that it is difficult to enjoy your work if you have absolutely no down-time. As such, it is important to make time to decompress with your family and friends, and participate in activities that bring you happiness and relaxation. If you do manage to maintain an appropriate balance work-life balance, your time spent in the office will likely be much more fulfilling.

·         Strive to turn disappointments into constructive action: take the time to reflect on how you can use negative experiences to affect positive changes in your professional life, and then work with your manager to devise strategies towards achieving such.

·          Deal with issues as quickly as possible: if there is something that is inhibiting your performance at work, discuss this with your superior; it is in your best interests and the interests of your employer for you to remain motivated and dedicated to your job.

0 comments | Posted by Reality Bytes - Real Estate Training Blog on 09/11/2012 at 12:00 AM | Categories:

Five quick tips for converting prospects into clients

To survive and excel in today’s increasingly competitive marketplace, real estate agents need to be making full use of business opportunities that come their way. Despite this, the reality is that a large number of agents will fail to meet their full business potential; while many agents might be great at creating or identifying leads, they often don’t harness the right approaches for converting prospects into clients. 


Here are some five simple tips to help you nurture leads and increase your listing portfolio:


1.       Once you have made contact with a prospect and secured their initial interest it is important to follow up promptly; in the digital age, most clients and prospects are accustomed to receiving immediate responses and information and, as such, if you can’t demonstrate you’re ability to be highly contactable and communicative from the outset, you are going to place yourself at a disadvantageous position;

2.       Look to create opportunities to demonstrate your competitive advantage: chances are that if a prospect is speaking to you, they are also speaking to a few other agents. As such, it is important to be able to identify not only what makes you and your services unique but also the most effective ways to articulate these qualities to your prospects;

3.     Attempt to give your clients an immediate picture of what working with you is going to be like. For instance, you may want to consider creating a personalised information pack to send out either electronically or via mail. This could include previously sold properties within the prospect’s area, a resume of your experience, sample marketing materials and a ‘teaser’ pamphlet outlining some potential strategies for selling the prospect’s property;

4.     Consider creating two databases for prospects – one for those that are looking for agents immediately and another for prospects that are at the beginning of their search; this may help you to develop specialised conversion strategies for prospects based on the stage that they’re at within the selling/purchasing process;

5.     Look to demonstrate your expertise regarding the local market; prospects will almost invariably feel most confident going with an agent that appears to be well informed about their area of interest. As such, before you enter into detailed discussion with prospects, you should always aim to ensure that you are equipped with relevant neighbourhood information. This should include, but is not limited to, median house prices, demographic information, amenities, historical data and capital growth prospects. 

1 comments | Posted by Reality Bytes - Real Estate Training Blog on 01/11/2012 at 12:00 AM | Categories: