At the beginning of the pandemic, we talked about how to navigate our “new normal” – working from home (with kids), virtual appointments, different processes and scripts around talking with our prospects. Now, how do we shift back? What should stay and what should go? As the world phases back to normal – visiting beaches, finally being able to get our hair done again, and opening up our model homes – here are some things that online sales pros need to think through as we transition along with the rest of the world.
These are here to stay as backup options and as great communication tools. I believe the best opportunity for converting an appointment to sale is still an in-person visit. Buying a home is one of the biggest investments in our lives; however, it’s still important to leverage virtual tools for pre- and post-appointment follow-up. For Phase 2 – eventual shift back to pre-COVID rules for setting a virtual or phone appointment – only use for customers not within reasonable driving distance or as a secondary option when it is too inconvenient for the buyer. Count these appointments and compensate for them differently; the goal is to get the prospect to an in-person visit.
The “no prospecting” order has been lifted! It’s time to begin communicating with ALL of our prospects again, not just our responsive ones and real estate agents. Definitely ease into this. Not everyone is at the same comfort level so you still want to maintain an empathetic tone as you begin picking up the phone again and making outbound calls. Here’s what you can say when you call an older non responsive lead, “I know you probably weren’t expecting my call today, but I wanted to reach out to you and see how you’re doing and if you are at a point where you’re ready to continue your new home search with us?”
If your builder has decided that it’s cool for you to continue to work from home – great! We believe that an Online Sales Specialist can work from home, but only if you follow the WFH guidelines. To be successful and to continue to have this privilege (yes it’s a perk) here are some things that must be in place:
No need to continue to report your numbers on a weekly basis. As we return to normal, you can return to normal reporting which includes logging your appointments daily, and monthly summaries of lead counts, lead sources, appointments, and sales. Continue to differentiate between the type of appointments you set – in person, virtual or phone.
Most importantly, during COVID, the curtain was pulled back to reveal just how important the Online Sales Specialist is for an organization. I encourage you to continue to be that leading indicator for your company. Set the example for how to effectively work virtually, leverage all the tools, report the metrics that matter, and be an incredible “first phase” of contact for your customers.
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