There’s nothing quite like the feeling of having your endless hours of phone calls payoff with a prospect agreeing to meet you for a listing presentation. Once you’ve made it to this stage, you can feel pretty confident that you’re a solid step closer to a transaction. And transactions are the name of the game.

Of course, you’re super-prepared for the meeting. It starts off pretty strong. But then, you begin to notice that your hot prospect seems to have cooled off. Perhaps they are disengaged, pre-occupied. They look at their watch, a sure sign that things aren’t going the way they should. They might even cut the meeting short before you get to the close, coming up with some excuse about a “thing” they forgot about.

Really, regardless of how long you’ve been in the real estate business, these meetings happen. It’s a frustrating feeling to know you’ve gotten so close, but then it doesn’t work out. There are any number of reasons your prospect might have pulled back. Below are just a few of the common reasons. Perhaps some of these resonate with you?

  • Your focus on building rapport didn’t work. You noticed a set of golf clubs in the hall closet saw a photo of the family out on their sailboat. Given that you enjoy both of those leisure activities, you jump in, using the cues as your opportunity to maybe create a new BFF. It’s natural and understandable to want to build rapport. But the reality it, your prospect isn’t looking for you to be their friend. It’s OK to acknowledge similar interests, but you’re there to convince them that there is nobody better equipped to sell their property. Stay focused on their needs.
  • You focus too much of the conversation on YOU. The prospect doesn’t need to hear a litany of your real estate experiences or triumphs. Stay focused on the salient facts about your experience in selling homes in their area: how many, what was the average time the house was on the market, what price did you get for the seller. Try not to share much more than those facts, otherwise you might lose their interest. Listen to what they have to say and ask good questions to keep the dialogue going.
  • You were being a little argumentative. Sometimes we tend to want to prove we’re the smartest person in the room. Or, in other words, we are quick to push back on a prospect who might have strong opinions about aspects such as pricing. Always remember: your prospect wants to be heard and, at this stage of the game, it’s your job to listen. Pushing back, being “right” isn’t going to get you too far. You’re there to present your credentials, gather information and build trust. It’s difficult to build trust when you are disagreeing with someone you’ve just met.
  • You weren’t fully prepared. You’ll likely lose your prospect if you show that you don’t know much about their neighborhood. Even if you never sold a property in a specific neighborhood, you can gather your information and be prepared to answer, honestly, but with enough authority to let them know you care.
  • You didn’t move in for the close when you had the chance. We all have made this mistake at one time or another. Instead of closing, you let the conversation drift. Once everything is said that needs to be said, close the deal! Agents often make the mistake of droning on or inviting more questions. By not cutting to the close, you open up the possibility for more objections.

Your job on a listing presentation is to find alignment with your prospect. It’s important to be smart (but not too smart), focused (on them, not you) and efficient with your time. And their time. This is the perfect was to build trust and forget a strong, initial relationship with your soon-to-be client.