Business 101: Do What You Say You Are Going To Do; CALL When You Say You Will

By
Real Estate Agent with Casa Latino Four Corners, REALTOR, CDPE

Well, I just met a prospective Buyer last weekend and, sad to say, she had LOW expectations of me and my profession.  Or, maybe I should say that I'm HAPPY to say that she had LOW expectations of real estate agents?! 

Okay--here's the story:

Prospective Buyer contacts real estate agent.  Agent has good phone conversation with Buyer, asks some questions about what Buyer is looking for, says, "I'll get right on it and CALL YOU BACK."  Then, NOTHING HAPPENS.  Agent does not call.  Buyer waits for a week or two; also does nothing, doesn't call that agent, really b/c it's very early in the buying process but Buyer has a poor outlook on real estate agents in general due to non-communication with her by the agent.  LOW, LOW expectation about real estate agents is now set.  :( 

Buyer gets up the nerve to contact real estate company #2, which is GREAT b/c it's MY company.  Speaks with a Relocation Specialist, THEN is told that an agent (ME!) will contact her--AND I DO contact her.          I e-mailed with my contact info and hours of operation.  I then called but she was at work, so asked me to call back later that night, which I also do.  No answer, so I leave a message.   I get an e-mail from the Buyer and call back the next day and we have an awesome, LONG-ish conversation.  I get a little more info from the prospective Buyer.  She gets some info from me.  Everything is cool.  Then, I ask "HOW AM I DOING SO FAR?"  Buyer responds:  "Well, you're doing great--YOU CALLED ME BACK."  I ask what she means by that and the Buyer relates the (above) story of the previous agent not ever calling back! 

I am sorry to say that, in this Buyer's estimation that "Great" is merely contacting her back and has nothing to do with what a terrific job I can do for her.  I think it's sad that returning a phone call is considered wonderful for me as an agent, without even discussing all the cool things I can do in terms of consulting, negotiating, or organizing on the customer's behalf.  I guess I'll really WOW her when the time comes for me to actually BE a real estate agent.  :) 

WHY do real estate agents NOT call back?  There are a variety of reasons (too busy, afraid to talk to people, wrong contact information given, just don't want to call, property called on wasn't in a good price range, wrote down the info on a small piece of paper and lost/misplaced it, didn't get the "warm, fuzzies" on the phone with the customer, don't want to pursue a business relationship with customer, unsure if customer is a "real" customer, etc.) but I don't think that's the right question to be asking, really.  The main fact is, when advertising works and people contact you and you are not able to answer the phone when they call, you MUST contact them back!  Or, have your assistant call them.  Or, just give the contact information to another agent in your office and have THEM call the prospective customer back. 

In the (true) story above, if the initial agent had gotten the Buyer's snail mail address even and sent something in the mail, then he probably would have been able to help the customer.  Or if he had e-mailed her, he may have helped himself out.  The Buyer waited a week or so before contacting my company, so the initial agent had all the time in the world to make a move but for some reason didn't. 

Unfortunately, non-communication is a complaint that many customers have about agents in general.  I don't really see how some agents stay in business.  If you say you're going to DO something, then DO IT.  Under-Promise and Over-Deliver.  It's Business 101.  When you follow-through with doing what you said you would do, that typically makes customers/the public happy.  When you don't follow-through, that sends a very bad message.  You can't please all people, all the time.  But, you CAN at least contact them back and see if you and they are a good fit to maybe work together or to see if they would be better served in working with someone else. 

If now is the time for you to look for help from a real estate agent that will communicate with you regularly, whether you are buying or selling, check out my websites, look at my customer testimonials, call for my customer references, and contact me for an interview.  We'll see if you and I are a good fit to maybe work together. 

--Lisa Spalding, Watson Realty Corp.

www.WinterParkHomeFinder.com

 

 

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Location:
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Groups:
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Tags:
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Rainmaker
1,073,964
Gary White~Grand Rapids Home Selling Pro Call: 616-821-9375
Flexit Realty "Flexible Home Selling Solutions" - Grand Rapids, MI
Real Estate Services You can Trust!

Hi Lisa, it shows how meeting a real professional can change the image of our profession and create a long lasting client.  Great post and thanks for sharing.

Oct 11, 2008 01:57 PM #1
Rainmaker
251,783
Katrina Madewell
Charles Rutenberg Rlty- More than 5,000 agents(813) 777-1196 - Tampa, FL
Tampa FL Homes for sale | Tampa Bay - (813) 777-1196

I supppose it was easy to exceed her expectations then hum??

Are you going to bankable results summit?  I am with my friend Crystal Brummer, she is BRO too and shes on here as well.

Katrina Madewell

Oct 12, 2008 03:03 PM #2
Rainmaker
1,017,021
Rob Arnold
Sand Dollar Realty Group, Inc. - Altamonte Springs, FL
Metro Orlando Full Service - Investor Friendly & F

It isn't that difficult to be good at what you do, is it?  I'm sure you will WOW her with all that you will do for her.  Hopefully she turns out to be a viable buyer for you.

Oct 13, 2008 02:03 AM #3
Rainer
68,711
Lisa Spalding
Casa Latino Four Corners, REALTOR, CDPE - Longwood, FL
REALTOR, CDPE

Gary-  Yes, I do intend to help her out.  :)  Thanks for the comment.

Katrina-  EXTREMELY easy to WOW someone when she has low expectations!  I think we hit it off great.  Now, I gotta actually find her a place. 

Rob-  Yep, it's sad that, even with being just average or okay at what you do, you can still stay in business.  I plan on going the next step, though, and being superlative at what I do.  Have you ever read the book, "Raving Fans"?  Cool book.  And, turns out, she probably IS a good Buyer.  Has a house to sell out of the area, but it's paid off already. 

Thank you ALL for the comments.  :) 

Oct 13, 2008 04:34 AM #4
Rainmaker
2,189,507
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Realtor Top 1%
RE/MAX Gold - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

Sometimes buyers garble their phone numbers and call from a blocked number, so how can you call them back if you don't know what their number is? Agents do the same thing.

But I know what you mean. I get half of my business because I answer my cell phone when it rings and I get the other half because I do what I say I am going to do. Sounds simple, but a lot of agents don't get it.

elizabeth weintraub sacramento real estate agent in land park

Oct 14, 2008 05:05 AM #5
Rainer
68,711
Lisa Spalding
Casa Latino Four Corners, REALTOR, CDPE - Longwood, FL
REALTOR, CDPE

Elizabeth-  Oh, I feel so PRIVILEGED that you stopped by for a comment.  :)  Yes, I get plenty of THOSE calls, too, that are blocked and I don't know if it's a solicitation call or someone who needs help.  And, if it's not a solicitation call, sometimes the person just asks, "Uh, what is the price of the home at XYZ St.?" and then, CLICK, they're gone.  But in terms of legitimate almost-business, we as agents sometimes really drop the ball. 

(BTW--LOVE your blog!)

Oct 15, 2008 08:58 AM #6
Rainmaker
236,386
Debbie Summers
Charles Rutenberg Realty - New Smyrna Beach, FL

Lisa - I called a REALTOR in SC that didn't reply to my response to an email...  I caught her at a bad time and she said that she would call me back the next day...  Still haven't heard from her = FAIL! 

Oct 16, 2008 05:00 AM #7
Rainer
68,711
Lisa Spalding
Casa Latino Four Corners, REALTOR, CDPE - Longwood, FL
REALTOR, CDPE

Debbie-  I know that things like this happen all the time.  I have even DONE these (bad) things a few times myself.  But, if that is your initial glimpse into an agent's way of doing business, then YIKES!--RUN!  :)   Thanks for the comment. 

Oct 16, 2008 07:22 AM #8
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Rainer
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Lisa Spalding

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