What is Prospect Pollution?
It may surprise you to know that new enquiry has a fresh shelf life of around 48 hours before it becomes polluted.
How do we know this? Because we are professional property prospectors, who have followed up thousands of this type of enquiry across countless residential projects.
If a prospect has made a web enquiry, it is safe to assume they will be expecting a call from consultants of every property they enquired about. Sidebar – we refer to these types of calls as solicited calls, as opposed to following up of ‘aged enquiry’ that are referred to as unsolicited calls. Back to it then; be warned, unless you are the very first consultant in their property research journey, it is best to assume you will be met with some resistance.
Let’s explore this further.
John has contacted you as part of his first step in the property research journey. John is a little green, and during discussions, you have provided options plus raised some issues that now arm John with a little more knowledge that he is keen to explore. John then picks up the phone and contacts other projects, or organisations, that appear to have a product which falls within the parameters he thinks will best suit his means.
Now, buckle in as this is where the sales pollution and buyer confusion begins.
The following are just some of the contamination issues that John may experience when speaking with competing consultants, and all within just hours or days of his initial enquiry.
- The competing consultant warns John about your project, whether true or false and plants seeds of doubt as to its credibility,
- They apply harsh and dubious tactics that not only add stress but also raises questions about the industry as a whole,
- They deploy overwhelming communication tactics e.g. relentless calls, emails and text which now confuses John to the point of flight, fight or freeze.
As you may now understand, your once keen-as-mustard John has justifiably developed some resistance to follow up calls, and all within such a short time.
Now that you have considered what John and others may endure during these early stages, the smartest approach is be prepared for resistant behaviour.
What can you do?
You would be well advised to have a script that warms and wins trust first before you proceed with any salesy talk, and be prepared to invest discussion time until the party conveys interest with a question. Their first question is usually a subtle sign that they are willing to continue the discussion, but you must still tread cautiously.
With new enquiry some of the advantages are;
- they are more likely to recall the details of each property they have enquired about so far,
- they are more inclined to answer unfamiliar call numbers as they wait for a response from vendors,
- they are more likely to nominate a genuine time for your call back if they can’t speak at the time of your initial call, plus
- they are more receptive to site visits and turn up for these.
…now it can even get trickier from here, so stay with me.
Aged enquiry is where you are following up days weeks or even months after their initial enquiry and the further out your responding call from the original enquiry the stronger the resistance you’ll likely be met with.
It is safe to assume your enquiry has experienced all the earlier issues mentioned but now on a greater scale. The difference is, over time they will have rehearsed a repertoire of their own, i.e. a well-scripted rejection response to your call. After all, they are likely expecting to be badgered.
With aged enquiry you will likely experience the following;
- they may have forgotten the names of the development/projects or specific property detail they were so keenly focused on initially,
- they are less likely to engage in follow up calls with most advising ‘now is not a good time to speak’ and despite their volunteering a time for your call back are likely to practise call avoidance,
- plus they are less likely to turn up for site visits that you so keenly organised with them.
So how do we soften this initial resistance long enough to establish rapport?
The first few seconds of the call are critical. Your language must be precise, convey respect for their time, and clearly state the name of the project.
The following is an absolute fail-safe introduction script:
“Good morning/good afternoon John – Holly Go Lightly – Rembrandt Luxury Apartments – Brisbane – just a quick call.
I understand – you may have – recently enquired – about our Rembrandt apartments.
We just wanted – to quickly ascertain – whether your property needs – have now been met – or perhaps your needs – have since changed?”
Note, the last part of your introduction has a double-barrelled question. Always finish your introduction with one of these to ensure the discussion continues a little further. Also, note we use hyphens (-) to suggest a half breath. Half breaths will help pace your speech, so that the prospect can keep up.
Now let’s go back to the beginning of the introduction.
- “Good morning or afternoon” is a formal greeting and will capture the parties interest by simply sounding a little more professional, therefore, standing out from the usual everyday type of greeting.
- Always introduce yourself by your full name. Only telemarketers, or people who see themselves as less important, use their first name only.
- The name of the project or property location is more relevant than the company you represent. Further, the enquirer will more likely recall the project and location as opposed to your organisation.
…hang in there you’re nearly at the home run.
- By stating “Just a quick call”, you are conveying respect for their time regardless of whether the call extends to minutes or just a few seconds. This will also place the party at ease, particularly if they are time poor.
- “I understand you may have…”, avoids your stating fact, e.g. you made an enquiry. If the party doesn’t instantly recall the project or property you are referring to and you’ve stated fact, their thoughts will spring into recall mode reviewing their research trail for evidence of the enquiry, and as a result, you have now lost their engaged listening.
- “…quickly ascertain”, again respectful of their time plus the word ascertain is not in common use and will slightly prick their attention.
Now remember this is only the introduction, but it will buy you valuable seconds. From here, you will need to script your questions to ascertain their level of interest and take the enquiry to the next level. Further, keep the questions soft as in not too salesy, plus be authentic.
A final warning!
Do not be tempted to add words to the script provided. A single additional word could detract from the strength of the script. The only changes should be replacement words to customise the script to your name, project or property.