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Cold Calling Tips for CRE Professionals

November 18, 2020 4 mins

Most commercial real estate professionals would agree that cold calling can make a huge impact on your business. However, cold calling is not easy for everyone and it is a skill that needs to be practiced over time. Picking up the phone and calling prospects is the perfect way for you to be proactive, and it puts you in the driver’s seat for finding potential new clients. To get the most out of your efforts, use these cold calling tips for CRE professionals: 

Identify your prospects

The best way to turn your cold calls into clients is to target the right people. If you specialize in industrial spaces, focus on calling tenants who lease industrial spaces or current owners of industrial properties. As an industrial expert, you’ll be able to answer any questions they may have and provide value to the person you are calling. Create a few different lists based on specific categories so you spend your time calling the appropriate people. 

Start with a script

There is nothing worse than sounding unprepared when someone answers the phone. So it is helpful to write a quick script and practice before you make the call. You will have to revise the script as needed, but it will provide you with a great starting point. Plus, knowing what you are going to say ahead of time can help you feel and sound more confident. 

Keep in mind that you will need to create a few different scripts based on different scenarios. For example, you may want one script for leaving a voicemail and another script based on if the person answers the phone. Plus, a conversation with a property owner would flow differently than a conversation with a prospective tenant – so have multiple scripts based on these scenarios. 

Get their attention

When cold calling, you want to immediately get the recipient’s attention in a way that offers them value. Most people are busy, and they do not want to waste their time if there is nothing in it for them. Put yourself in the recipient’s shoes and think about how you can help them. What problems are they facing that you could solve? Be genuine when speaking with people, and show your sincere interest in providing value. It is best to ask questions that will get the prospective client talking. Avoid questions with “yes” or “no” answers and ask open-ended questions to keep them talking. The more details you receive, the more you will be able to help them. 

Be respectful of time

The last thing you want to do is call people too early in the morning or too late at night. It’s generally best to cold call between 10am to 5pm. While there is no perfect time to sit down and make calls, you may have good luck when you vary the time you call. For example, make calls one day in the morning and the next day in the afternoon to increase your chances of speaking with the most people. 

Leave a voicemail

If you want the recipient to call you back, you need to leave a voicemail. Keep your message under 20 seconds or so, and be concise. Clearly state your name, your company, how you think you can help them, and the best phone number for them to call you back at. Keep in mind that it may take a few attempts to get in touch with the person, so don’t give up after the first call. Schedule a follow-up call and reach back out in a few days. 

Use a CRM to stay organized

Keep track of your cold calling efforts with a commercial real estate CRM, like ClientLook®. Add new contacts to your database, and include notes about your call. If you left a voicemail, put that in your notes and schedule a task to follow up with them again. If you speak with the prospective client and they do not need your services, request their permission to follow up with them at a later date. Include notes in your CRM that you can easily reference when you call them back in the future. 

Remember that the main goal of cold calling is to set up a meeting with a prospective client – so ask for it! Offer to stop by their business or set up a formal meeting. If the timing isn’t right at the moment, ask the prospect if you can add them to your email list, so you can keep in touch with them. With these tips, you will be on your way to feeling more confident and successful with your cold calling efforts. 

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