Customer validation

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From Matt Giffune
Assistant Vice President
Jones Lang LaSalle

This post also appears on Matt’s personal blog

It is widely believed that real estate is a “relationship business.” While I’m a believer that relationships are the cornerstone of success in any business endeavor, it is shortsighted to subscribe to the notion that if you simply “cultivate” relationships that you will reach a level of success that is the admiration of your peers.

Sure, commercial real estate decision makers aren’t constantly thinking about their next move. It takes some wooing to get their attention. In order to truly identify where a relationship can start, one must qualify leads like any other salesperson.

My esteemed colleague Brooks Murphy bestowed onto me the idea of the six boxes of love. The concept is simple:  is there an opportunity right now to help a company with it’s real estate decision? This should be the first thing any broker asks herself when qualifying a prospective client. Too often I find myself looking for reasons to keep a prospect in my hit list, only to have wasted valuable time in justifying my pursuit.

The six boxes of love are loosely as follows:

1) Is the potential commission large enough to justify your time spent pursuing and executing the deal?

2) Does the company need to make a real estate decision within the next 18 months?

3) Do you have the resources and market knowledge to provide top notch service?

4) Are they going to hire a broker?

5) If they hire a broker will it be on an exclusive basis?

6) Will you be protected by the landlord or your client if they decide to renew their lease?

If the answer is no for any of the boxes of love, take it off the list. Rinse, repeat.



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