Last week, in THE POWER OF QUESTIONS: PART 1, we provided an overview of the importance of asking great questions on the journey to super-success in real estate sales. We reiterated the point (made frequently in this blog) that the best way to create rapport and trust with a prospect is to ensure THEY do 70% of the talking. And the best way to push your prospects to do more talking is to ask excellent questions.

We covered the most basic types of questions in last week’s post. Today, we move on to “advanced questioning.” These are the questions that press your prospects to dig a little deeper, and to think a lot harder about what they are looking for in a relationship with a real estate pro. More importantly, these are the types of questions that give you important information that can help guide the discussion and, ultimately, your listing presentation.

As we review these questions, you might notice the similarities between certain types of questions. Indeed, there will be overlap. But, again, these types of questions are all intended to lead you down the path toward closing the deal.

  • ANTICIPATION: These questions dig into a prospect’s motivations and emotions, dreams and even their fears:
    • What’s exciting you about this (i.e. potential move to California)?
    • What if it works out exactly as you want? (Or doesn’t work exactly as you want?)
  • ASSESSMENT: These questions elicit answers that help the prospect feel more in control. They force homeowners to think more deeply about things:
    • What do you think is best?
    • How do you feel about it (great question for expressives and amiables)?
    • What are your thoughts about this(for drivers and analytical types)?
  • CLARIFICATION: People often communicate in generalities. These questions push the homeowner to provide more specifics:
    • What do you mean when you say (i.e. “we like a quiet neighborhood”)?
    • What’s the part that is not clear to you? This is the perfect question to ask if the prospect appears baffled or lost by what you’re saying.
  • ELABORATION: If the prospect is holding back, you can probe by asking:
    • Can you tell more about that? And if they’re on a roll…
    • And what else?
  • EVALUATION: Here are a few questions that work with analytical types:
    • How does this fit into your plans?
    • What do you think will be the best situation?
  • EXPLORATION: What are FSBOs thinking about?
    • What are some of the other options you and your partner are thinking about?
    • What could be another possibility?
  • HYPTOTHETICAL: A few good questions to ask frustrated expireds:
    • If you could change the situation, what would you do differently?
    • If the market suddenly changes, what would you do?
  • HISTORY: Again, expireds have obvious history, so these questions might be effective.
    • What do you think stopped your home from selling?
    • What have you tried so far (also for FSBOs)?
  • IMPLEMENTATION: These are more closed-end and can work with procrastinators:
    • When will you do it (move, change jobs, scale down)?
    • What will you do (once the kids graduate)?
  • INTEGRATION: These are more advanced versions of implementation questions:
    • How will you get it all done (FSBOs)?
    • What will you take away from the experience you just had? Perfect for expireds, because the answer will help guide you on how to position yourself to be the solution.
  • LEARNING: Sometimes people need to vent, especially expireds:
    • If you had to do it all over again, what would you do?
    • If the same thing happens again, what would you do? Again, the answers set you up as the person who would do things differently from the start.
  • OPTIONS: People like to know they have choices. This helps them define what those choices might be:
    • What are the possible solutions (to your not having sold on your own)?
    • What are your options (for listing again)?
  • OUTCOMES: The answers to outcome questions often tell you everything you need to know to help your pitch:
    • What would be the ideal situation for you?
    • How will you know you made the right decision?

We’ve said it many times, but it bears repeating (again and again): the MORE your prospects talk (70%), the more you learn about their fears, frustrations, dreams and motivations. And the only way to get them talking is to master the art of asking questions: the right questions at the right time in the right situation.

Start asking… and start selling today!