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Why You Shouldn’t Bash A Potential Client Online

Real Estate Agent Comments OnlineWhat is an expectation? Maybe a better question, what is an expectation to you? To take it a step further – what is an expectation to your client? You may think you know what an expectation is, but does your client? I find that many problems in the real estate space between you as a real estate agent and your client could have been overcome or prevented entirely if expectations were properly set. Let me explain.


Expectation:
1. A strong belief that something will happen or be the case in the future.
2. A belief that someone will or should achieve something.

The other day I came across a blog from a real estate agent discussing a problem he/she had with an out of town buyer. The gist was this: the agent was venting that the client was not respectful of his/her time. The agent was venting [on a public forum I might add] that his/her client was not getting back to him/her in a timely fashion. The agent showed the out of town buyer some homes and even wrote an offer – well below the list price at the clients request – not surprisingly the offer was not accepted. The buyer then went back to wherever they were from. The real estate agent kept in touch through email and calling, keeping the client updated with new properties that met the clients needs – always leaving a voicemail and never getting a call back. Time goes by with no response from the client when on a Sunday, the client sends a message that they are in town and would like to see more homes. The agent was rather put off by this stating that Sundays are their family time – understandable right? The real estate agent, venting to the rest of the real estate community listed some of the challenges he/she has had with this buyer including being stood up. This post was on a real estate forum that allows other real estate agents to comment. Not surprisingly, many of the other real estate agents took the opportunity to make the client wrong and therefor make the real estate agent right “you tell em”, “our time is valuable”, “they are definitely not worth the time” etc.

While I was reading this post there were a few things that stood out to me that had me scratching my head. First of all, I think most of the challenges the real estate agent had with the client could have been avoided or mitigated if he/she had only set the proper expectations. I will find a home for you that fits your needs and I will communicate with you in this fashion, I only show homes between X and Y on these days, this is what I would expect from you. That expectation could have been to email what you like and what you don’t like about a home, any changes and/or modifications to the request from the initial consultation [if there was one].

I saw another thing. Value or possibly lack thereof. The buyer could have not responded to the real estate agent because the real estate agent did not properly state their value. Value in this case would be the reason(s) the buyer should work with this real estate agent. Without the presence of value, this real estate agent looks exactly like one of the other million+ real estate agents in the country. If the buyer believed they could get the same knowledge, experience and service levels from any real estate agent would there be any rush, or dialogue or even feedback? This could have been handled in the initial consultation, even if is directing the buyer to a link on his/her website that speaks to the services and the value the real estate agent offers to that buyer or any subsequent buyer. If the expectations are not agreed upon – the agent or the buyer walks. In the end the real estate agent said they would not show the buyer homes on a Sunday standing on the position that his/her time is valuable [I believe it is]. In doing so he/she could have cost him or herself a client, a transaction and any future referrals from this buyer.

There is another thing that stood out to me that is more devastating to this agents business than letting the buyer go. He/she aired this clients [perceived] dirty laundry in a public forum. While the buyers name was not mentioned, reducing the likelihood that the buyer would find the post, it did not escape the eyes and ears of big brother – Google. This real estate agent has tied him/herself to a rant about a buyer! In today’s hyper, ultra connected world, tech savvy consumers rely on Google for research, recommendations, referrals, and of course information. A simple Google search for this agents name could reveal this rant and the comments of the other real estate agents that decided it would be a good idea to join in on slamming this buyer. Like I said, the chances of this particular buyer finding this post are remote at best – but if you Google’d this real estate agent and found this rant – would you want to work with him/her? The post has since been removed from the forum but not from Google.

What happens in Vegas doesn’t just stay in Vegas and what goes online will likely stay there forever, just waiting for another potential client to find. My attitude is, if I am going to take the time to put something online, I will do my best to make it unique, dynamic, engaging and most importantly of value to my ideal client, increasing the likelihood that they will find it.

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Stephen

Hi I'm Stephen Garner, I'm just a guy in the title industry {in Phoenix} trying to change how real estate agents market themselves and their services. To that end, I teach my clients HOW TO leverage sales technologies like WordPress, Content, Video, Camtasia, Final Cut X, iMovie and indexable IDX solutions to convey value and help your ideal client find you online when they are most interested in learning about you and your services. I work for escrows. Hire me!

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