Perception is everything and some businesses are completely at it’s mercy especially in the services sector. This saying comes to mind: “you’re only as good as your last sale”. In sectors like recruitment and real estate, customers will gravitate to the sales people they perceive as the best. Customers want the best and it’s your job to make sure customers believe their perception of you is good.
Here are three tips on how to manage perception so you can get and retain a healthy customer base.
1. First Impressions Are The Most Lasting
More likely than not, a buyer’s first impression of you and your business will more than likely now come from the internet and this is good as it provides a level playing field irrespective of the size of your business. Managing your reputation and brand online is key to making a great first impression and build trust online. As Realtor Mag reports, survey respondents identified “consumer opinions posted online” and “branded websites” as two of the most trustworthy promotional media (at 70 percent and 50 percent, respectively).
Consumer surveys like the aforementioned; present supporting evidence that your website is the new virtual handshake and elevator pitch all in one. No longer are you able to create a positive firest impression in person as your prospective customers have already created their own first impression of your business online. Therefore your website has to stack up against your competition. Your website needs product and service listings, simple navigation and optimized web design, remember it’s the display window to your business and perception is everything so via your website you’re establishing credibility in the eyes of potential clients. Likewise, while you can’t control what people say about you on review sites, you can respond professionally and politely to reviews (positive or negative). This will show people that you care about your customer service and go the extra mile to build trust with clients.
And of course, in real life, business operators like realtors can also make a strong first impression on visitors by preparing properties for tours and making listings as attractive as possible. This extra effort, combined with strong interpersonal skills and a helpful nature, will provide a great jumping-off point for a lasting customer relationship.
2. Why Using Management Systems Create A Good Impression
Managing your workflow will show your clients your professionalism and attention to detail. Avoid paper trails that are disorganised, you want to show your customers you respect the business you’re in and that you operate in efficiently. Avoid leaving yourself dozens of scraps of paper with cryptic little notes, you’ll lose them and vital information will slip through the cracks. Forgetting to call, email or text a customer will harm your relationship and customer’s trust in you to deliver.
As The Balance points out, failing to use effective contact and task management systems can be a huge time and energy waster especially when it comes to time management in the real estate industry. For example, there are a lot of software management systems for the real estate industry now including content management systems (CMS) and customer relationship systems (CRM). A popular CRM in the real estate industry is a realtor CRM called chime.me and it’s popular as it’s helps keep track of leads and develop an efficient communication strategy that’s great for building a rapport with clients. Using systems can minimise the administrative work load so sales people can spend more time doing what they love doing the most – selling.
3. Being Punctual Is A Sign Of Respect
Punctuality shows respect and there’s never a time you can drop the ball on it. After you have created the right first impression and you’re following through with sound business practices you must follow through with punctuality. Being late to a meeting or event is not a good look show you’re committed and give your clients a great reason to keep working with you. As Phoenix Business Journal writes, “Being late for anything—a business meeting, a luncheon, an appointment with a client—suggests a gross lack of integrity. Being fashionably late is neither fashionable nor profitable. It’s inconsiderate, discourteous, and often, insulting.”
Showing up early enough to prepare for tours, open houses and in-office appointments will score you major points with clients. Conversely, showing up “just five minutes late” time after time will convey that you’re either disorganized or uncaring in general. And you have to face it, that’s not who anyone would choose to find or sell them a home.
Earning your clients’ loyalty is half the battle in competitive industries like real estate that are essentially driven by one person – the sales agent.