No leads to yes . . . Does it?

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Cornerstone Business Group Inc 0225086119

I've often heard that no leads to yes, and in the sales business, that can happen. But, does it always happen. Of course not, but it does happen. No leads to yes was the philosophy of the young salesman who called me last week. He wants me to sign up with his company to build a new website.

He had called me last year and tried to coax me into a new site then, but I had a new site that was unproven, and I didn't need two. I declined his offer and moved on. He called last week acting like we were old buddies. He asked how things were going and made it sound like we had worked together on a real estate deal. When I posed the question, "Did we do a real estate deal together," he came clean, gave me his name and his reason for calling.

I wasn't in the middle of anything, so I took a look at his product. While we were on the phone, I searched the Internet for reviews of his company. I found multiple sites that hosted reviews and his company came in at about 50% bad and 50% good. That didn't seem a like a good margin to me. I mentioned that to him and he excused it away as disgruntled employees flaming the company.

He spent the majority of the time explaining why my site looked nice, but was a terrible site compared to his company's product. I made him an offer of three months free service including setting the site up and if I had one good sale in those three months, I promised to sign up for a year. 

Of course, unless things have changed a lot, it takes about 3 months, or maybe a little more, for Google to think you have something worth sharing before it starts recognizing your site anywhere near page one. We left the call at the point because he couldn't take my challenge. I did ask, "If you don't believe in your product, why should I?" Nobody ever takes my offer. I may have given him a trial run if he had been honest from the beginning and if he hadn't trashed my site provider.

Monday, he called to tell me he would take the offer. He stated that he had talked to his boss, and they would accept my offer with a few changes. I had told him last week that he would need to send me a list of all the charges that would ultimately be associated with the site and the details of my offer. He said he emailed it to me. I quizzed him a little further and he asked, "Would you confirm you email address?" Not trying to be a jerk, I said, "Wait, you sent me the email with the details. What address do you have?" I could hear the panic in his voice as he formulated an email.

I was kind of pulling for him. I was really hoping he wasn't lying to me and that he really did send me the email, and sadly, I was disappointed. He came up with a crazy email that was nothing like any of mine. I can't even imagine how he thought he could slip that one by me, but if your philosophy is no leads to yes, the goal is to keep the client engaged. But, there is a difference between engaged and annoyed.

Unfortunately, most sales techniques don't work on me, but it taught me a good lesson. Stay in touch with past prospects. Have a great product that is highly praised in online reviews (his wasn't), and don't ever assume your potential client is stupid and susceptible selling techniques. Don't trash your prospects current . . . . (whatever), and, above all, be honest. No leads to yes sometimes, but not today.


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Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

I love your last sentence especially, Mike!  If I learn someone is being dishonest with me, they will have lost an important factor with me.  And, that is credibility!

Jan 25, 2019 04:15 PM #1
Lottie Kendall
Compass - San Francisco, CA
Helping make your real estate dreams a reality

What a shame, Mike. That salesperson did a good job with a lengthy follow-up period, but then blew it.

Many years ago I had a call from an insurance company; I told her I had just renewed my existing policy and wouldn't change at that time. 11 months later she contacted me again; I met with the lead agent, and have been with him for 30+ years now. I learned a good lesson about the importance of follow up!

Jan 25, 2019 06:22 PM #2
Peter Mohylsky. The Santa Rosa Beach Expert
PrimeSouth Properties - Santa Rosa Beach, FL

Great ideas here about negotiation and follow up.

Jan 26, 2019 05:22 AM #3
Karen Rice Madison AL Realtor
Keller Williams Realty Madison - Madison, AL
256-348-1527 Call/Text

Mike Cooper, GRI I think you were very generous in giving the guy your time and a chance to prove his product.  He shot himself in the foot; no one wants to do business with a liar.  It's refreshing to read Lottie Kendall positive experience with her (now) long-trusted insurance agent.  It just goes to show the power of follow up, but also the power of integrity.

Jan 26, 2019 05:22 AM #4
Kat Palmiotti
406-270-3667,, Broker, Blackstone Realty Group - brokered by eXp Realty - Kalispell, MT
The House Kat

"No" can lead to a "yes" but not always. Follow-up is definitely important, as is follow-through!

Jan 26, 2019 05:41 AM #5
Mary Hutchison, SRES, ABR
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate-Kansas City Homes - Kansas City, MO
Experienced Agent in Kansas City Metro area

Quite a story...and sad..too many pp feel the need to make money by being dishonest and connning pp.  HOpe this guy learned a lesson

Jan 26, 2019 06:51 AM #6
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello Mike-  -  -I tend to look at a "NO" as 'next opportunity' ever since hearing about it in a coaching seminar many years ago. Sometimes it can lead to a YES but moving forward is a good next step.

Jan 26, 2019 08:34 AM #7
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

You make many important points about how NOT to make a good impression - and a sale.

One of the first things I think sales people need to learn is to avoid trashing the competition. Even if they were honest and had good reviews, I'd avoid them.

Jan 26, 2019 10:19 AM #8
Anne Corbin
Long and Foster - Lake Anna - Spotsylvania, VA
Serving Lake Anna & Central Virginia

What a great story!

Jan 26, 2019 07:33 PM #9
Mike McCann - Nebraska Farm Land Broker
Mike McCann - Broker, Mach1 Realty Farmland Broker-Auctioneer Serving Rural Nebraska - Kearney, NE
Farm Land For Sale 308-627-3700 or 800-241-3940

Great story Mike Cooper, GRI   I many times use the "new" guy with companies.  Sometimes it works well and sometimes it is messy...but always it better be honest.  It is so easy to repeat the truth...and so easy to panic in a lie.

Jan 27, 2019 08:05 PM #10
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Mike Cooper, GRI

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