Cold Calling Techniques in Commercial Real Estate Brokerage

In commercial real estate agency and brokerage, cold calling is an essential part of the business building process.  Every agent and every broker should undertake a number of cold calls every day to build their market share with new people and new prospects.

In any property market and at any time, there will be new people to approach regards the professional services that you can provide in sales, leasing, or property management.  At least 25 new calls should be made every day to new people that you have not spoken to before.  It will take you 2 hours to make those calls.  From doing that, you will nearly always reach approximately 10 or 12 people in one sitting and from that you can get one or two new meetings.  That is how you get the new relationships started.

So you need to establish your cold calling process to take your business forward as an agent or broker. You should also practice your dialogue.  Here are some ideas to help you with that:

  1. It is hard to get traction in the cold calling process without practice.  This means that you will need to refine your dialogue and improve it over time.  This can be done each morning as part of your preparation for the working day.  You can practice call conversations as you drive to work.  Without any other person in the motor vehicle, you have the opportunity to refine your scripts and your conversational ability for the cold calls that need to be done.
  2. Each evening you can prepare a list of 25 people to call and approach the next day.  Given that we work with mainly property investors and business owners, it is really quite easy to establish a list of contacts to call.  The business telephone book will give you plenty of telephone numbers.  In addition to that, you can research one or two property owners each day to add to the list.
  3. Split your prospecting territory up into zones.  That will allow you to focus your call processes to particular streets and business types.  As a general rule, you should be travelling through the streets of your territory each day to identify any opportunities that you can see.
  4. It is best to get the calls done first thing at the start of the day.  In that way nothing can interfere with your progress and prospecting system.  Avoid making or attending meetings at the start of the day so that you can get your prospecting done efficiently and effectively.
  5. Track your call progress in a database that you personally maintain.  Where possible, use a computer for this process, and have a telephone and the computer in front of you as part of making the cold calls.  You can then enter the results of calls into the database immediately.
  6. Purchase a headset to use as part of the call prospecting system.  The immediate advantage here is that you will have your hands free to record the results of the conversation.  One other clear advantage is that you can stand up as part of the calling process.  It is well known that call conversations made from a standing position are far more effective and connecting than those from a sitting position at a desk.
  7. Understand the rules that apply to the do not call register in your area.  Ensure that you are adhering to those rules in making the calls.
  8. Track and measure your call activity and meeting conversions.  The primary object of making a call should be to create a meeting with people that have a future or current need in commercial property.
  9. Collect e-mail addresses and mobile telephone numbers as part of the prospecting activity.  Get the permission of the person that you are speaking to for ongoing contact so you can send relevant property information and advise them of market activity.

The prospecting process does not need to be hard.  The telephone can be a distinct advantage when it comes to building better market share and growing your database.  That being said, it does require a diligent focus and ongoing activity.  That is a personal skill and a personal process.