How to Create an Awesome Listing Presentation

iStock_000003377492XSmallChris Smith loves to crowd source. And who can blame him? Its a great way to tap into the resources of a community, assemble information, and then develop whatever it is you need. Chris has a great community that is very responsive because he has been a high profile member through his work at Tech Savvy Agent, Inman News and now as a product evangelist and coach. Recently Chris Posted a request;

Looking for the best listing presentation in the business. Modern, clean, beautiful graphs and charts, showcases the importance of digital marketing, social and mobile etc… Preferably iPad ready too. Easy ask right? If you have one you think fits the bill let me know. I want to steal it, tweak it and then give it away to the entire community to use for free.

Not only is the request , on the surface, easy, it is generous since Chris will bring back the new and improved  listing presentation to be shared by the community. The problem is Chris is asking the real estate community to deliver him a Unicorn (or a Jackalope, a Yeti , or an honest politician  – pick your mythical creature) so he can dress it up and give it back. I don’t think that can work and I’ll tell you why.

Listing presentations are very personal. Listing presentations are not about price, cost, technology or “sizzle”, they are about answering four questions;

  1. Why should I use a REALTOR?
  2. Why should I use your brand?
  3. Why should I use your company?
  4. Why should I use you?

The questions get modified a little – if you’re a multi-office firm, the question might be ;

  1. Why should I use a real estate professional?
  2. Why should I use your brand?
  3. Why should I use your company?
  4. Why should I use your office?
  5. Why should I use you?

If you’re not a REALTOR they might be ;

  1. Why should I use a real estate professional?
  2. Why should I use your brand?
  3. Why should I use your company?
  4. Why should I use you?

The purpose of a listing presentation is to present a value package to the consumer that will explain to them the benefits of listing their property. As a result an effective listing presentation must answer these questions. To be most effective, they need to be answered in order, so the answer to each question (though they will vary from company to company and agent to agent) supports, leverages and prepares the consumer for the next question, reminds them of the earlier benefits posited  and helps them walked through the mental process  of choosing the presenter as the real estate professional to represent them. Why can’t they be answered in a really snazzy template? Because the answers to each question differs more and more as the presentation becomes more and more supportive of the strengths of the brand , the company, the office and the agent are developed into a logical presentation.

Answering the first question is the closest to generic, since we assume everyone making the listing presentation is a REALTOR or real estate professional. But even that one needs to be customized to the needs of the consumer. The conversation might be need to stress the benefits of third party negotiation. It might be about the additional safety a consumer receives when potential visitors to their home are screened through the qualification process. If the seller is considering listing the home privately, it might be about the additional exposure that is obtained by utilizing the network of MLS members as opposed to the one sign, one ad, one website approach of a FSBO. Or perhaps the benefit that needs to be stressed are the legal, financial and title expertise the real estate professional brings to the process.

The second question has far wider variations. The Brand may be independent , regional broker, or a national franchise. Each one has things to recommend themselves, and therefore the presentation of each one would differ. But the benefits of the specific brand need to be added to the already demonstrated benefits of the use of the real estate professional.

The specific company benefits are then added to the mix, with the value package being further refined. For example of you are a multi-office firm with a large national franchise, your value package is different than if you are a large regional , or perhaps a national firm like the NRT. Then the benefit of the local office location, or neighborhood experience, or history comes into the mix.

The final question, answered only after you have answered all of the above questions, is why use the specific agent, and the reasons for this and the value package involved varies from person to person. Perhaps the benefit is that the agent is new and aggressive  and the listing will be an important part of their inventory, providing the seller with more attention, and more effort. Or it might be that the agent is older and more epxperienced, with an in depth knowledge of the area and the property type. We could go on and on, but I’m sure you see the point by now.

There have been attempts to create generic listing packages for years. From simple flip charts, to customizable multi-media laptop presentations to PowerPoint and Pdf table presentations, someone always seems ready to provide a template for real estate agents to use for a small or reasonable fee. None of them are complete, and none of them are really more than templates for salespeople to use after extensive customization. Butas long as there are people that don’t understand the purpose of the listing presentation clearly,people will look for simple answers to the complex questions that consumers need answered. And while they do that, people that answer the questions above will be out making presentations to answer those questions, and them listing the properties they want.

 

 

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13 comments for “How to Create an Awesome Listing Presentation

  1. February 24, 2013 at 9:09 am

    Thanks for writing this.  Listing presentations are personal and they need to be somewhat flexible.  However I have to say it is easier to put a listing presentation together than to give it.  Chris has an advantage in that he just knows how things should be done but doesn’t ever actually have to do them.

  2. February 24, 2013 at 10:09 am

    Thanks Teresa – somehow you and I agree more frequently than not when it comes to the day to day grind of real estate. Its a job like any other and it takes effort to get it done right.

  3. Terry Burgess
    February 24, 2013 at 12:18 pm

    Most folks don’t care about brand or company.  They want to know why they need to pay a Realtor commission and why you would be a great choice to be that Realtor.  

  4. February 24, 2013 at 12:40 pm

    Please forgive anything stupid I’m about to say because, as I am always saying: I have never bought or sold real estate.

    Given the goals of a “listing presentation” outlined above, is there any reason why there is a presentation (iPad/Laptop, keynote/pdf/ppt) at all? 

    My (admittedly limited) understanding is that listing presentations are usually given in person. Wouldn’t all of those questions be answered through conversation anyway? What is made better by disintermediating  oneself–sticking a screen between the presenter and the 1-3 person audience–during that live presentation?

    These are sincere questions; I’m trying to understand this process more myself.

  5. February 24, 2013 at 1:54 pm

    Terry, with all due respect,though the commission conversation is the one that the consumer often starts with, the reason they do so is because they think that all real estate salespeople and companies are the same. A good listing presentation helps the consumer understand the differences between each brand, company, office and agent, and by doing so creates an easy way to help value exceed the cost – which is where contracts get signed. I say this as an individual that listed hundreds upon hundreds of homes one at a time. If you allow the focus of a listing appointment to be on the value of the home or the amount of commission, you have done the seller a true disservice and you will probably not be listing anywhere near the amount of property you could.

  6. February 24, 2013 at 2:03 pm

    Gahlord – the question is a really good one – in fact, the purpose for a listing presentation is to make sure that among other things;
    1. Inexperienced agents remember to mention all of the points regarding brand/company/office and agent to explain their value package.
    2. TO remind experienced agents to mention all of the points regarding brand/company/office and agent to explain their value package.
    3. To have an easy structure to allow agents to create a (here’s another word that sparks conversations) script or framework for consistent presentation
    4. To allow for the graphics and text to reinforce the verbal accompaniment (all sales are some form of learning for the consumer, and not everyone learns the same way – some people need to hear, some to see, and some to be actively involved – different sales techniques employ more than one modality)
    5. To assure a consistent brand message for the franchise, company and office
    6. To minimize potential misunderstandings about the listing process and company policies
    7. Using a presentation helps avoid interruptions and side issues being brought up by the consumer which would confus the process.
    just to name a few of the immediately apparent reasons – I’m sure that with a little bit of time I could think of more – In fact, one just occurred to me – Because people that use thoughtful presentations are more effective salespeople.
    All of that being said, the presentation is a way to help structure the conversation in a thoughtful and useful manner for the salesperson – but the salesperson needs to be smart enough to know when the presentation needs to be center stage and when it does not.

  7. Vbramson
    February 24, 2013 at 7:46 pm

    Terry, you are wrong!   All professional service providers charge a fee.  Lawyers, accountants, insurance agents, tax preparers, dentists, doctors, musicians, tutors…Realtors provide services to  consumer-buyers &  sellers as their fiduciary agent, contract negotiating,  previewing properties, marketing the listings, paying for their local MLS, realty boards, E&O insurance, office expenses, gas, continuing education, sending their children to school, paying medical expenses,  and zillion other things.  Educated consumer cares about your brand, familiarity with RE laws, the localities and what type of visibility your company gets (sellers want to see how technically and digitally savvy one company is compared  to another).  Fact is our commission rates are flexible, in short “you get what you pay for.” Do you want a gold level service or a flea market deal?”  Most people want a realtor to help them in a real estate transaction to avoid all errors, possibly to their interests.
    WHAT DO YOU DO FOR A LIVING? Pity how some people are ignorant, even in 21st century!

  8. February 25, 2013 at 10:10 pm

    Hi Gahlord – That’s part of our debate as well.  I think listing presentations are boring.  If I don’t want to look at it, I’m not sure why we would expect the client would either.  I find that it’s the human to human interaction that is important.  In my experience, the presentation is used as a reminder of the points we need to make.

  9. February 25, 2013 at 10:14 pm

    I agree with Terry; I don’t think most people care about the brand or the company.  They care about the person who’s helping them.  Generally people don’t hire me because I work for RE/MAX.  They hire me because they trust that I can get the job done.  As a consumer, I don’t care if my attorney has E&O insurance or has to take CE classes.  I want to know if they can get the job done and how much it’s going to cost me.

  10. February 25, 2013 at 10:48 pm

    Hi  Vicki – Listing presentations shouldn’t be boring, they need to be structured  but the agent should be able to gauge the response of the seller to speed up or slow down the presentation  As Gahlord points out, this is about a conversation – the presentation material is there to assure that the agent presents the material in a structured and logical manner 🙂

  11. February 25, 2013 at 10:50 pm

    Terry, with all due respect,though the commission conversation is the one that the consumer often starts with, the reason they do so is because they think that all real estate salespeople and companies are the same. A good listing presentation helps the consumer understand the differences between each brand, company, office and agent, and by doing so creates an easy way to help value exceed the cost – which is where contracts get signed. I say this as an individual that listed hundreds upon hundreds of homes one at a time. If you allow the focus of a listing appointment to be on the value of the home or the amount of commission, you have done the seller a true disservice and you will probably not be listing anywhere near the amount of property you could.

  12. February 25, 2013 at 10:50 pm

    Gahlord – the question is a really good one – in fact, the purpose for a listing presentation is to make sure that among other things;
    1. Inexperienced agents remember to mention all of the points regarding brand/company/office and agent to explain their value package.
    2. TO remind experienced agents to mention all of the points regarding brand/company/office and agent to explain their value package.
    3. To have an easy structure to allow agents to create a (here’s another word that sparks conversations) script or framework for consistent presentation
    4. To allow for the graphics and text to reinforce the verbal accompaniment (all sales are some form of learning for the consumer, and not everyone learns the same way – some people need to hear, some to see, and some to be actively involved – different sales techniques employ more than one modality)
    5. To assure a consistent brand message for the franchise, company and office
    6. To minimize potential misunderstandings about the listing process and company policies
    7. Using a presentation helps avoid interruptions and side issues being brought up by the consumer which would confus the process.
    just to name a few of the immediately apparent reasons – I’m sure that with a little bit of time I could think of more – In fact, one just occurred to me – Because people that use thoughtful presentations are more effective salespeople.
    All of that being said, the presentation is a way to help structure the conversation in a thoughtful and useful manner for the salesperson – but the salesperson needs to be smart enough to know when the presentation needs to be center stage and when it does not.

  13. Bill Lublin
    February 26, 2013 at 8:09 am

    Vicki – I think the decision is not that simplistic. In fact, I think that all of the factors are part of the process for most consumers. The reason for the four questions are to help establish differentiators in competitive situations, and to leverage the strengths of the brand/company/office along with the agent’s differentiators to establish a value package for the seller. They should not be either the brand or the company or the agent, it should be the the brand AND the company And the agent 🙂

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