Now that busy season is complete, you have time to review with your staff what did and did not work this time around. This is great as it will allow you to clean up your pitch to make sure it is creating value for your residents and prospects.
Seek first to understand then to be understood. You can start by asking your favorite residents questions to determine why they chose your community amongst the many other choices. This will help you avoid regurgitating old school sales techniques that are no longer effective.
Below, we will discuss some techniques to avoid and other, better options.
Tip #1 Ditch the Pitch
Your prospects do not care about your product like you do; apartments are a commodity. Find out what their problems are and attempt to solve them. For example, they may not like that they could not pay their rent online at their last community. How can you solve this issue or help them with this at your property?
Tip #2 Focus on Your Ideal Prospect
Focus on selling to your ideal community prospect; choose to sell to their needs. Do not attempt to market to those that do not fit into your ideal prospect characteristics. Don’t worry, this will not narrow your market. Others will still naturally reach out, even if they do not fit your ideal prospect’s image.
Tip #3 Persuasion Rather than Qualification
Qualify rather than persuade others. Your prospects are smart and do not want to be pressured or persuaded into a choice that is not a good fit for them. Use your questions about their needs and wants to help qualify or disqualify whether your property is right for them and they are right for your property.
Tip #4 The Sales Voice and Smooth Talking
This may be the most important one to ditch immediately. It is old school and most people will be able to flag this type of voice right away. Most sales people are not aware of how their voice is changing over the phone or with a prospect sitting right in front of them. Ask your peers to listen and tell you, after the visit, how your tone and pitch changed during the leasing tour.
Tip #5 Begging for the Lease
This includes the fear tactics like warning people that the unit will not last long or you already have three prospects looking to lease that apartment.
Tip #6 Not Outlining Next Steps
Make it clear how you will follow up with them. Remember to let them know what needs to be completed, on their part, as well. This allows them to know what to expect from you.
Tip #7 Old School Sales Language
Do not use sales word or words that will lead you into the “spam folder” of the prospect’s brain. It is no longer popular or required to be pressured or persuaded into a sale. Pay attention to the adjectives you are using in conversations with prospects. If it feels like something a car salesman would say, get rid of it and do not use it. A good start is to avoid using “prospect” or “resident” when directly interacting with them as it feels rather formal and impersonal.
Do not overuse exclamation points; it is ok to use a period when necessary. Think about whether you would truly verbalize what you are saying in a tone that would require an explanation point. If you wouldn’t, then do not write with it.
Tip #8 Prospects Care About Seeing Your Amenities, Not Reading About Them
Remove adjectives like “amazing” or “great” when describing your property as they are not helpful or necessary. Instead, take them and let them see for themselves.
Tip #9 Personalize
“Prospect Name” – Make sure to fill in all templates with the proper information personalized to the prospect.
Overall, choose to collaborate with over pitching to your prospects. Create a conversation rather than a sales pitch.